Last Seen is recovering stories of families separated in the domestic slave trade. Formerly enslaved people placed these ads hoping to reconnect with family and loved ones for decades following emancipation. The ads serve as testaments to their enduring hope and determination to regain what was taken from them.

Mapping the Ads

Formerly enslaved people placed ads looking for loved ones from all over the United States and sometimes from as far away as Africa. Explore the map to see the locations of those placing ads or locations where ads appeared.

The Interactive Map

Featured Lesson Plans
Created by and for Teachers

Explore lesson plans created and field tested by K-12 teachers.

How Teachers Are Using Last Seen Ads

Listen to teachers talk about their experience teaching the ads in their classrooms.

August 1, 2023
LaMonique Adom, 3rd Grade Teacher
August 2, 2023
Abigail Henry, High School Teacher

Short Stories for Children
10-14 years

Read and share these stories with your 5th to 8th graders.

Genealogists Finding Their Ancestors

Hear from genealogists about how Last Seen Ads are helping them discover new things about their families.

Tell Us Your Story

Did you find a family member? We love hearing from our users about how The Last Seen Project has helped them fill in their family tree. Share your story with us.