Posted on December 15, 2021 at 10:00 AM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek

Many of us have family legends that were passed down through generations.

And some of those legends can be proven (or disproven) thanks to technological advances.

In the case of Gayle Jessup White, that technology was DNA testing — and the legend was that she was descended from Thomas Jefferson … and Sally Hemings.

The story of how Jessup White first heard this claim, how it was eventually confirmed, and how she processed the uglier sides of her heritage is now out, in the form of the book Reclamation: Sally Hemings, Thomas Jefferson, And A Descendant's Search For Her Family's Lasting Legacy.

Jessup White previewed some of the key points of Reclamation – and explained why she works at Jefferson's home, Monticello — in an interview with All Things Considered’s Michel Martin.

You can read a transcript of it on NPR’s website or listen to their conversation below.

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Categories: Author Interview

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