From the front page of the New York Times this morning, one of the most important and compelling articles I’ve ever read about slavery, reparations, and genealogy, documenting Georgetown University’s Search for Slave Descendants.
In the fall of 1838, two of Georgetown’s Jesuit priests arranged for the sale of 272 human beings owned by the university. The slaves worked on a Maryland plantation and their labors supplied Georgetown with cash. When the plantation was no longer profitable, the university’s leaders arranged to sell most of the slaves, who were sent to New Orleans for auction.
An inspector scrutinized the “cargo” on Dec. 6, 1838. “Examined and found correct,” he wrote of Cornelius and the 129 other people he found on the ship.
The notation betrayed no hint of the turmoil on board. But priests at the Jesuit plantations recounted the panic and fear they witnessed when the slaves departed.
Some children were sold without […]