Kathy Marshall “Finding Otho: The Search for Our Enslaved Williams Ancestors”
Discussion and Book Signing


Kathy Lynne Marshall’s lifelong infatuation with African culture was challenged when a DNA test revealed just how much European cream was in her African coffee. That sent her on an intensive search to find out more about her family’s diverse ancestry. Focusing on her maternal great-great-grandfather, Otho Williams, Kathy only knew he was born a slave in 1834 in Maryland. But who were his parents and his owner? Exactly where was his home? What was his life like 150 years ago?In “Finding Otho: The Search for Our Enslaved Williams Ancestors”, Kathy imagined their lives through biographies of runaway slaves, stories about the 1700s and 1800s in Maryland, as well as learning about the Civil War Battle of Antietam. She felt like Henry Louis Gates Jr., sifting through hundreds of bills of sale, land deeds, and probate and census records to find her family. She was also a “boots on the ground” investigator in Maryland to experience first-hand where and how her black family lived.Kathy found her ancestors and you can too by reading this part-genealogy, part-storybook, part-guidebook. It contains a “Solve Your Mystery” section, numerous sleuthing techniques, and plenty of easy-to-read images you might find helpful in successfully finding your ancestors, whether they were slaves, immigrants, or adoptees. Several chapters explore DNA testing to help find African, European, and other relatives.A professional researcher, analyst, and technical writer, Kathy worked for the California Highway Patrol for 36 years. Exploring her family roots for four decades, her published works include “The Ancestors are Smiling!”—a book of family stories from the descendants of Otho Williams—as well as separate biographies on the lives of her father, mother, sons, and grandchildren. She is also the principal artist for her 25-year-old Kanika African Sculptures art and books business (www.KanikaMarshall.com).Kathy would very much appreciate your leaving a rating if you decide to purchase this book.