Thank you for your letter.
I appreciate your courage in starting this conversation.
Although our family has not, at least so far, uncovered any DNA matches with descendants of enslaved African Americans, we do have evidence (1840 Donaldsonville, LA census) of the fact of slave ownership (one so far, that we know of) by one of our ancestors, Levi Hess (1812-1882), born in Germany, died in San Francisco, but lived in New Orleans from 1835 to 1850, had 8 children with Theresa Sanger. With the help of the River Road African American Museum, we were able to find a conveyance document for the sale of a woman named Ruthe from M.W.S.Green to my grgrgr grandfather, Levi Hess. Reading the document was a sobering, painful but important experience for many in my family and we hope to learn more, both about what happened in the past and what we can do to help now. Other than the above named museum, two other organizations have been helpful: Enslaved. org and The Beyond Kin Project. A useful article is the following:
Eager to speak to you and others out there who are going through this essential discovery and education process.
Walnut Creek, CA
Searching for: FRIEDMAN (KOPAIGOROD UKRAINE), SHULMAN/SCHULMAN (KOPAIGOROD UKRAINE), SPECTOR, GOLOGORSKY, KANSTERIN/KANSTEROOM, LIPSON (JERUSALEM), ZASLER (JERUSALEM, ZASLOW), LEVY, GRATZ/GRATCH, EISENSTEIN (DROHITCHIN), BENIOFF (KIEV AREA), SILBERMANN/SILVERMAN (ZEIL GERMANY), DINKELSPIEL(BADEN, GERMANY), MAIER, WIEDERQUIST, HOROWITZ (KIEV AREA), HESS (NEW ORLEANS), SANGER (NEW ORLEANS AND ALSACE), MAROZ (Ignatovka, Ukraine).