Monday 28 March 2011

Black History Month lecture

A special lecture sponsored by the U.S. Embassy

Professor J. William Harris (Univ. of New Hampshire)

"The Hanging of Thomas Jeremiah: A Tale of Race, Slavery, and the American Revolution"
Thurs. March 31, 4 pm, A7, Samuel Alexander building

In 1775, Thomas Jeremiah was one of fewer than five hundred "Free Negros" in South Carolina and, with an estimated worth of £1,000 (approximately $200,000 today), possibly the richest person of African descent in British North America. A slaveowner himself, Jeremiah was accused by whites of sowing insurrection among slaves at the behest of the British government. Among his accusers was Henry Laurens, Charleston’s leading patriot, a slaveowner and slave trader, who would later become the president of the Continental Congress. On the other side was Lord William Campbell, Royal Governor of the colony, who believed that the accusation was unjust and tried to save Jeremiah’s life. These three are the central characters in this little-known drama of the American Revolution.

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