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Slavery & Emancipation

Some five hundred years ago, ships began transporting millions of enslaved Africans across the Atlantic Ocean to the Americas. This massive population movement helped create the African Diaspora in the New World. Many did not survive the horrible ocean journey. The enslaved Africans represented many different peoples, each with distinct cultures, religions, and languages. Most originated from the coast or the interior of West Africa, between present-day Senegal and Angola. Other enslaved peoples originally came from Madagascar and Tanzania in East Africa.

Even though slavery existed throughout the original thirteen colonies, nearly all the northern states, inspired by American independence, abolished slavery by 1804. As a matter of conscience, some southern slaveholders also freed their slaves or permitted them to purchase their freedom. Until the early 1800's, many southern states allowed these manumissions to legally take place. Although the Federal Government outlawed the overseas slave trade in 1808, the southern enslaved African-American population continued to grow.

Abraham Lincoln and Emancipation

Abraham Lincoln and Emancipation

Adline White, an Ex-Slave

Adline White, an Ex-Slave

African American Heroes, 1881

African American Heroes, 1881

American Slavery, 1841

American Slavery, 1841

Benjamin "Pap" Singleton

Benjamin "Pap" Singleton

Cotton Gin

Cotton Gin

Cotton plantation on the Mississippi River

Cotton plantation on the Mississippi River

Dred Scott

Dred Scott

Emancipation

Emancipation

Escaped Slaves Follow Troops

Escaped Slaves Follow Troops

Former slave house, Dickerson, MD

Former slave house, Dickerson, MD

Frederick Douglass

Frederick Douglass

Freed Slave

Freed Slave

Fugitive Slave, 1845

Fugitive Slave, 1845

Harriet Tubman, "Moses"of the Underground Railroad

Harriet Tubman, "Moses"of the Underground Railroad

Landing with African-Americans at Jamestown, VA

Landing with African-Americans at Jamestown, VA

Missouri Emancipation, 1865

Missouri Emancipation, 1865

Plantation Life

Plantation Life

Plantation to Battlefield, 1863

Plantation to Battlefield, 1863

Reading the Emancipation Proclamation

Reading the Emancipation Proclamation