Our Let's Talk Programs focus on starting conversations, opening new lines of communications and learning about our community.
Diverse Voices Book Club
Join along all month as we led a book discussion on Facebook Groups. 

In April, Join our discussion of The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead.

In May, Join our discussion of A Long Way Home by Saroo Brierley

See details here or join the Facebook Diverse Voices Book Club here.

The following Webinar Series is sponsored by the Kellenberger Room and are online only. Register for these online webinars at the New Bern Library's Kellenberger Room desk, by calling 252-638-7818, or email the This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Upcoming Webinars:

“Colored News” presented by Diane L. Richard
Monday, May 23 at 7 p.m.
Don’t Miss Out on This Hidden Though Invaluable Goldmine. The reality is that effectively until the Civil Rights Act of 1964, “white” newspapers printed little news of the African American, Colored, Negro, Black, etc., community. Crimes by “negros” and other sensational news are the type of article typically found. That said, some “white” newspapers did publish “colored news” or similar columns in their newspapers. This talk explores this aspect of African American newspaper research. Register for the "Colored News" Webinar here.

African-American Genealogy Methodologies and Strategies  presented by LaBrenda Garrett-Nelson
Monday, June 27 at 7 p.m.
The Genealogical Proof standard has universal application, and this lecture will highlight the sources and strategies available to meet its requirements in the case of African American ancestors who lived in the antebellum period. Topics covered will include the process of developing a research plan to answer a focused genealogical question; the identification of potentially relevant sources based on historical context (e.g., dates of settlement, origins of major migrant groups, and boundary changes);  and applicable laws for time and place (e.g., the legal aspects of the treatment of enslaved people as property).

Migrations 1: Many Arrive presented by Diane L. Richard
Monday, August 22 at 7 p.m.
Early Migration In, Across and Out of North Carolina -- Many individuals and families migrated into North Carolina, especially in the colonial and pre-Civil War time period. Depending on who was immigrating and when, different locales in NC were hot spots for emigrants from abroad either directly or via Virginia, South Carolina, Pennsylvania and beyond. As the state developed, resources were depleted, productive land was becoming more scarce, settlers considered it to be getting too crowded, and we see a pattern of western migration. This migration often did not stop at the state borders. Many families spent a few years, a generation or a few generations in North Carolina, often hopscotching across the state, east to west, before migrating to adjoining states and beyond. Let’s explore these years of migrating North Carolinians – the history of the times and the documentary trail left behind. 

Property Rights and Wrongs: African Americans at the Courthouse presented by Judy G. Russell

Monday, September 26 at 7 p.m.

From being treated as property to having their children and their property stolen by those who used the law against the freedmen, African Americans’ experience at the courthouse had only one bright spot: it created records for the genealogist-descendants of enslaved and enslavers alike. 

Migrations 2: North Carolinians on the Move  presented by Diane L. Richard
Monday, October 17 at 7 p.m.
Reconstruction and early 20th Century Migration -- Throughout history many of those who stepped foot in North Carolina have migrated into, across and out of the state. Reconstruction and the early 20th century accelerated certain types of out migration from the state. The economic devastation created by the Civil War and the needs of those formerly enslaved to reconnect with far flung family members resulted in many leaving North Carolina. Increasing discrimination against African Americans, World War I, and the depression found many more North Carolina families fragmented as some members moved to the Norfolk-Portsmouth area, or New York City, or locations with robust factory-based economies – either as part of the “Great Migration” or those just seeking opportunities unavailable in North Carolina. We’ll explore the factors leading to out migration from NC, efforts to replenish the workforce, and how we might link “back to NC” from where its former citizens ended up.