The purpose of this project is to document and celebrate African American history through the lives of African American families. This endeavor is not a simple genealogical analysis, or a collection of short biographical entries, but a celebration of the collective achievement of entire families. Documenting these pioneering families of the past is not an exercise in self-admiration, or an attempt to indulge in nostalgic praise for a bye gone era, but ultimately, is meant to awaken, encourage and inspire today's African American families to persevere and reach for greatness. Historical African American culture and society has already set a precedent of success and achievement through the efforts and lives of proud families who have left an enduring legacy for today's black families to embrace and harness, not just as an affirmation of our past, but to use as a powerful wellspring to fuel the accomplishments of future generations. Some of the families presented here are historically well-known; however, many of the family surnames that will be profiled are families that are less heralded, but who have contributed significantly to African American history and culture overall.

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