Black History Month originated in 1926 by Carter Godwin Woodson as Negro History Week. The month of February was chosen in honor of Frederick Douglas and Abraham Lincoln, who were both born in that month.
Religion was used to rationalize slavery?
When the settlers of Georgia saw the prosperity of their South Carolina neighbors who used slave labor, they searched for a justification to introduce that practice in their own settlement. Thus the proprogating of Christianty among the "heathen Africans".
The German settlers were assured by their friends in Germany of its harmlessness. Word came to them in 1749: "If you take slaves in faith and with the intent of conducting them to Christ, the action will not be a sin, but may prove a benediction." The good men's conscience's were spared.
Leading men among the Scotch and Germans who opposed the introduction of slavery were threatened and persecuted. Under great pressure, the trustees yielded, and slavery was introduced on the condition that all masters should be obliged to compel the negroes to "attend, at some time on the Lord's day, for instruction in the Christian religion." In 1752 the charter was surrendered to the crown, the colony had all the privileges accorded to others, and flourished.
How about that. I knew religion was used to pacify the slaves with a promise of a better life in the hereafter.
Black History Timeline
My plan is to post a few dates everyday in addition to any other journal entries. I always learn something new whenever I revisit history. In addition I'll offer some little known tidbits and personal observations here and there.
1619: The First African Slaves
Slave labor introduced in America by a Dutch trader exchanging his cargo for food in Jamestown Virginia in August of 1619. The American slavery system became more developed and codified in its inhumane treatment around 1680. Slaves were denied the use of their native language, drums and other traditions, some practices were retained and became an important part of the American way of life.
Africans introduced the rice plant to North America and taught English settlers how to cultivate and irrigate the crop.
1773: Phillis Wheatley Poetry Published
"Poems on Various Subjects Religious and Moral" The first African American book published. Wheatley was subjected to an oral examination to test her knowledge and literacy because it was not believed that a Negro could write poetry. John Hancock
was among the group of examiners. Wheatley wrote a poem for George Washington's birthday, to which he wrote a letter of acknowledgement, "I thank you most sincerely for the ..elegant line you enclosed..the style and manner exhibit a striking proof of your poetic talents." You go girl!