Millennial (born 1982 - 1998)
Adrienne Abiodun was born in Angeles City, Philippines. Her mother was born in Hollywood, California and both of her fathers were born in Mississippi. Her mother and biological father were in the United States Air Force and her dad retired from the United States Army Signal Corps as a Lt. Colonel.
Growing up, Adrienne lived many places as the daughter of parents serving in the United States Armed Forces. She lived in nine different states across the country and attended too many schools to count. Adrienne graduated from high school in Honolulu, Hawai'i.
Adrienne attended the Art Institute of Los Angeles and majored in video production, earning an Associate of Science degree. Before becoming a mostly stay-at-home mom, her career included doing short stints in experiential mobile marketing campaigns, event promotion, and commercial and music video production in entertainment.
As a professional genealogist, her niche areas include African American genealogy, deep south United States, and genetic genealogy. She is a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists, Florida Genealogical Society, the Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War (DUVCW), and Sons and Daughters of the United States Middle Passage (SDUSMP) for which has served on the board. Adrienne has been the keynote speaker for multiple lineage society conferences, conducted statewide DNA workshops in Florida, and organized genealogy events. She also published the children's picture book Isaac and the Bah Family Tree by Adrienne Wilson.
Adrienne enjoys fitness and exercise, capoeira, running, reading, travelling, learning Farsi and bits and pieces of other languages. She has sought out off the grid destinations and travelled globally to over 20 countries including Romania, Tajikistan, Ethiopia, and Kenya as a volunteer for Habitat for Humanity.
Adrienne is most proud of her accomplishment as a mother to her two children Naomi and Oneil.
Oral History Summary
- Adrienne Abiodun's oral history podcast episode Part 1
- Adrienne Abiodun's oral history podcast episode Part 2
Off the grid globetrotter. Enduring loss. Overcoming generational shame.
Adrienne discusses the need for greater suicide prevention support for military personnel after she endured losing her father, who served in the U.S. armed forces, to unaddressed mental trauma; losing her hearing at 16 years old from a car accident; how her off the grid exploration in Tajikistan’s Wahkan Valley in the Pamir mountains led to her interest in DNA testing for genealogy and a search for her heritage after having learned that her dad was not her biological father at 10 years old; beginning her career after studying video production at the Art Institute of Los Angeles; interspersing volunteering with Habitat for Humanity in Romania, Ethiopia, and Kenya among jobs in mobile marketing including her walking from New York to California for Steps Across America; leaving the workforce to raise her children; enjoying playing capoeira, fitness, botanical gardens and learning Farsi in her free time; discovering the realities of using DNA tests to research genetic ancestry; becoming a professional genealogist; her family not knowing or talking about their past; how family history was lost by fleeing Mississippi for California and never returning; descending from Revolutionary War patriot Christopher Guice; discovering that the black man listed as the father on her grandfather's birth certificate was a lie but instead was a white man named James Moffett from 1924 segregated Mississippi; working through generational shame, anger and pain about her slave owning white ancestry; her grandfather's connection to Revolutionary War patriots; the story of how the family of George Leighton, son of her Revolutionary War ancestor Samuel Leighton, in Massachusetts, wrote him off because he married into a slave owning family in Mississippi; connecting with white relatives who shared stories of her Revolutionary War lineage; informing the leader of the Connecticut State Society Daughters of the American Revolution that they share ancestry with Revolutionary War patriot James Collins and subsequently being invited to be the keynote speaker at the state conference during which Adrienne presented their mixed race family connection; using DNA to help point toward more record sets; the variations in DNA connections versus genetic heritage versus traditional paper research; Commander James Collins's Revolutionary War service and his letter scolding the British; joining the DAR by a white Moffett cousin providing an affidavit of family relation for her application in support of his Y-DNA test results; amending her grandfather's death certificate to name his true father; giving herself permission to explore her own history; potentially caring for the gravesites of the family of her ancestor's enslavers; her brother joining The Society of the Cincinnati; taking leadership roles within the Children of the American Revolution and Daughters of the American Revolution; assisting members with DNA lineage research.
Adrienne Abiodun's oral history was recorded on August 22, 2020.
Membership State: Florida
DAR Patriot Ancestor(s)
Collins, James: Massachusetts
European Descent Male
Leighton, Samuel: Massachusetts
European Descent Male