If you were a free black person in America in the early 1800s, what might your life be like? It couldn't have been easy. I have read accounts of free blacks being kidnapped and taken into the South and sold despite their protests. And, even though blacks in the north were free, it was still difficult to make a living and participate in society. Despite being free, their skin color still marked them as second-class citizens. So, what's a freeman to do? In 1820 the answer was to leave and the first organized emigration back to Africa occurred.This Day in History: On February 6, 1920, the Mayflower of Liberia sailed from New York with 86 freed slaves (and maybe their families, although the account I read didn't specifically say so). They were headed to Africa - but, where?
Also, on this day in 1867, the Peabody Fund was established. It was the first fund of it's kind, designed to provide grants to communities to help educate the formerly illiterate slaves. George Peabody is considered to be the father of modern philanthropy. His aims were to improve society, promote education, and provide the poor with the means to help themselves.
Labels: Black History