Family tree of former slaves coming togetherBreaking News
Jennifer Farley, director of the Stagville state historic site, a plantation that once spanned about 47.5 square miles across parts of North Carolina's Durham, Orange, Wake and Granville counties, restarted the project two years ago, The News & Observer newspaper reported Thursday.
"We've just scratched the surface, I feel," Farley told the newspaper. "But if we don't have this, then these people will be forgotten. That is the worst thing you could do."
The first phase of the work started in the 1980s at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. A student who interned at Stagville sifted through all the Cameron-Bennehan papers on campus and documented the name of every enslaved black he came across. The thick binder filled with pages of names such as Orange, Toast, Mittie, Solomon, Moses and Little Lot sat unused until Farley arrived.
"I thought it was amazing that nothing was being done about it," she said.
The work is difficult, hindered by a lack of birth certificates, which often were not issued for slaves or were incomplete.
Farley has had an easier time than other plantation researchers because Cameron and Bennehan -- early trustees at UNC-Chapel Hill -- kept meticulous records of the plantation.
comments powered by Disqus
- Did Salmonella Kill Off the Aztecs?
- Jewish history is under siege in the middle east and these volunteers are risking their lives to protect it
- 'Amazon should stop selling Holocaust denial books'
- National Museum of African American History and Culture Reaches Milestone of 1 Million Visitors
- What Makes a President Great? Clipping? Sipping? Slashing?
- McMaster knows how national security policy can go wrong. Will that help him?
- Historian and Antiwar Activist Marilyn Young Dies at 79
- Trump Chooses Historian H.R. McMaster as National Security Adviser
- Holocaust Historian Deborah Lipstadt Explains Why People Believe Trump's Lies
- Princeton’s Harold James warns World War Three is now a "serious threat”