Beginning in the mid-1860s, the Christian Recorder published hundreds of ads placed by individuals seeking family members, friends, and acquaintances. The content of these ads provides insight into the lives of formerly enslaved people and other members of African-American communities during and after the Civil War.
As part of an ongoing project at Villanova University, students explored many of the ads and compiled data on both the advertisers and the people they sought. The resulting data includes information from ads that ran between 1863 and 1869 and provides students with opportunities to explore research questions related to the these often very personal requests for information.
The below articles summarize several digital research projects based on exploring the Christian Recorder ads.