AfriGeneas Press Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Launches Ancestral Cooking Forum

Web's Legendary Beacon for African American Genealogy

Marietta, GA -- August 17, 2006 -- announced today its latest forum centered on the diverse cultural cuisines of Africans in the Americas. The AfriGeneas Ancestral Cooking Forum will provide historians and genealogists with possible clues linking African regional cultures with African American regional culinary traditions. Nina Young-Bennett has been named as its Forum Manager. is the web’s legendary beacon to African American genealogy and history. “Our mission at AfriGeneas is to provide the resources for researching African ancestry,” says founder Valencia King Nelson. “Our forums are places for sharing research, networking and for advancing historical scholarship. The Ancestral Cooking Forum is an interactive exchange of regional foods and recipes and their historic connections to African American cultures.”

The African presence in the Americas is five centuries old. The enslaved and free people of the African Diaspora came with prized labor experience in fishing, agriculture, salt making, livestock and cattle raising. They also contributed to an important cultural legacy, which was a natural expression of their West African heritage: cooking. Over the centuries, African-ancestored communities throughout the US, the Caribbean and Latin America may have altered early cooking traditions, but all regions have retained some of their distinctive African heritage. Vegetables such as okra, greens, black-eyed peas, other food staples like yams, rice, and fruits such as coconuts, bananas, and watermelon have direct links to Africa and the Americas. 

The Ancestral Cooking Forum will explore traditional cooking methods (one pot meals and stews); utensils and artifacts; early black restaurateurs, entrepreneurs all connected to various eras in American history. “It’s interesting to note that one celebrated African American cook was Susan Baker King Taylor of Georgia," said Ms. Nelson. "Taylor served as cook for the 33rd US Colored Troops under the command of Union Army Colonel Charles Tyler Trowbridge."

The Ancestral Cooking Forum is the latest addition to the popular and informative AfriGeneas Message Boards. These interactive forums include subjects from Slavery, Reconstruction, the Underground Railroad, the Black Military, African-Native American Ancestry, Free Persons of Color, Book Reviews, Writing Family History and the Global African Diaspora, DNA Research, Genealogy and Technology, Family Reunions, to Genealogical and Surname Research. 

AfriGeneas, founded in 1996, is the premier website for African American genealogy and history. It is Google’s top-ranked African American genealogy site and has been named one of the top 101 genealogy websites for seven years in a row by Family Tree Magazine. 

For more information about The AfriGeneas Ancestral Cooking Forum please contact: Valencia King Nelson, Webmaster, 770-421-8432,


17 Aug 2006 :: 19 Aug 2006
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