In the News: America’s Other Original Sin

http://www.biography.com

Calhoun portraits removed

David Yaffe-Bellany | January 25, 2016| Yale Daily News

The students eating breakfast in the Calhoun College dining hall on Friday morning were not gathered there to witness the removal of a widely loathed work of 19th-century portraiture. They were focused more on oatmeal and coffee than on the vexed history of race at Yale.

But at about 10:50 a.m., Calhoun Master Julia Adams entered the dining hall, trailed by two men with a ladder and some bubble wrap, art technicians trained to haul priceless paintings from place to place. They had come to take down the glowering portrait of outspoken slavery advocate John C. Calhoun (photo) that had hung on the back wall since the 1930s.

Read more: http://yaledailynews.com/blog/2016/01/25/calhoun-portraits-removed/

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 America’s Other Original Sin

Europeans didn’t just displace Native Americans—they enslaved them, and encouraged tribes to participate in the slave trade, on a scale historians are only beginning to fathom.

By Rebecca Onion | Slate | January 18, 2016

Between 1670 and 1715, more Indians were exported into slavery through Charles Town than Africans were imported.

Here are three scenes from the history of slavery in North America. In 1637, a group of Pequot Indians, men and boys, having risen up against English colonists in Connecticut and been defeated, were sold to plantations in the West Indies in exchange for African slaves, allowing the colonists to remove a resistant element from their midst. (The tribe’s women were pressed into service in white homes in New England, where domestic workers were sorely lacking.) In 1741, an 800-foot-long coffle of recently enslaved Sioux Indians, procured by a group of Cree, Assiniboine, and Monsoni warriors, arrived in Montreal, ready for sale to French colonists hungry for domestic and agricultural labor.  And in 1837, Cherokee Joseph Vann, expelled from his land in Georgia during the era of Indian removal, took at least 48 enslaved black people along with him to Indian Territory.  By the 1840s, Vann was said to have owned hundreds of enslaved black laborers, as well as racehorses and a side-wheeler steamboat.

A reductive view of the American past might note two major, centuries-long historical sins: the enslavement of stolen Africans and the displacement of Native Americans.  In recent years, a new wave of historians of American slavery has been directing attention to the ways these sins overlapped.  The stories they have uncovered throw African slavery—still the narrative that dominates our national memory—into a different light, revealing that the seeds of that system were sown in earlier attempts to exploit Native labor.  The record of Native enslavement also shows how the white desire to put workers in bondage intensified the chaos of contact, disrupting intertribal politics and creating uncertainty and instability among people already struggling to adapt to a radically new balance of power.  (TOP PHOTO)

Read more: http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/cover_story/2016/01/native_american_slavery_historians_uncover_a_chilling_chapter_in_u_s_history.single.html

NATIVE AMERICAN SLAVES INTERACTIVE

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