History

South Carolina Negro Act of 1740: The Code that Prohibited Enslaved Africans from Learning to Read

Passed by the South Carolina Assembly on the 10th of May, 1740, the Negro Act was a comprehensive set of laws aimed at controlling and subjugating the enslaved population within the colony. Among its most notorious provisions was the...

Remembering George Meadows: The African American Man Lynched Under False Allegations of Rape and Murder in 1889

Lynched on January 15, 1889, in Jefferson County, Alabama, Meadows became a victim of a society plagued by racism, false accusations, and mob justice. The events leading to Meadows's lynching began on January 14, 1889, when a white woman reported...

Ahmadou Bamba: The Senegalese Leader Exiled by the French for Inciting “Anti-Colonial Disobedience” in 1895

Ahmadou Bamba, also known to followers as "The Servant of the Messenger" and Serigne Touba or "Sheikh of Touba," was a religious leader in Senegal and the founder of the large Mouride Brotherhood (the Muridiyya) who was exiled by...

The Volta-Bani War of 1915: French West Africans’ Rebellion Against French Military Conscription During World War I

The Volta-Bani War was a major yet obscure anti-colonial rebellion which took place in French West Africa, in the areas of modern Burkina Faso and Mali between 1915 and 1917. This conflict emerged as indigenous African forces, uniting various...

Arthur St. Clair: The Black Minister Lynched for Presiding Over a Mixed-Race Marriage in 1877

Arthur W. St. Clair was an African-American leader whose life was tragically cut short in 1877. His crime? Presiding over the marriage of a black man and a white woman. St. Clair was born into slavery on the May plantation...

Lacy Mitchell: The Man Lynched for Testifying Against Two White Men Accused of Raping a Young Black Girl in 1930

Lacy Mitchell, was a 53-year-old farmer residing in Gwinnett County, Georgia, who met a tragic fate in 1930 at the hands of two white men, Jack Bradley and O. E. Allen for testifying against two white men accused of...

Mandume: The African King Who Led an Uprising Against Portuguese Colonial Rule in 1914

Mandume ya Ndemufayo was the last king of the Oukwanyama people, a subgroup of the Ovambo ethnic group in southern Angola and northern Namibia. He is known for leading an uprising against Portuguese colonial rule during World War I.

Delphine LaLaurie: The Serial Killer Who Sadistically Tortured and Killed Her Slaves for Fun

Delphine LaLaurie was a prominent New Orleans socialite in the early 19th century who became infamous for the atrocities committed at her mansion, particularly after a fire in 1834 revealed the horrific conditions in which enslaved Africans were kept. Born...

Onesimus: How an Enslaved African Gifted to a Pastor Helped Save Boston from Smallpox

Onesimus was an enslaved African who, in the late 17th century, was purchased and given as a gift to Puritan minister Cotton Mather. His extensive knowledge of inoculation, a practice he had undergone in Africa to prevent smallpox, would...

James Gordon: The Reverend Who Led the Protests Against Ota Benga’s Exhibition in a Zoo in 1906

Born in the United States, James H. Gordon is best known for his courageous advocacy for social justice, particularly his efforts to end the dehumanizing exhibition of Ota Benga at the Bronx Zoo in 1906.
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South Carolina Negro Act of 1740: The Code that Prohibited Enslaved Africans from Learning to Read

Passed by the South Carolina Assembly on the 10th of May, 1740, the Negro Act was a comprehensive set...
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