A troupe of "Masqueraders" carry whips and perform a parody of Irish dance steps, a tradition started by african slaves who were mocking their Irish slave masters.

Montserrat’s St. Patrick’s Day Commemorates a Rebellion

On March 17, 1768, the enslaved people of a Caribbean island planned a revolt, assuming the Irish slave owners would be drunk and distracted.
An African-American miner poses with a shovel in Auburn Ravine during the Gold Rush, California, 1852.

Slavery in a Free State: The Case of California

California came into the Union as a free state in 1850, but proslavery politicians held considerable sway there.
Pro-Trump protesters gather in front of the U.S. Capitol Building on January 6, 2021 in Washington, DC.

The Legacy of Racial Hatred in the January 6 Insurrection

The U.S.’s politics of racial hatred are sustained by a culture of making political compromises when bold action is required.
A 19th-century engraving depicting an Arab slave-trading caravan transporting black African slaves across the Sahara.

What Was the Zanj Rebellion?

A remarkable episode of Medieval Islamic history that often goes untold.
New York, 1855

How One Household Avoided Emancipation Laws

The Volunbruns enslaved twenty people and moved relentlessly between empires and states as more jurisdictions outlawed slavery.
A dramatic portrayal of the 1856 attack and severe beating of Massachusetts senator Charles Sumner by Representative Preston S. Brooks of South Carolina.

Political Divisions Led to Violence in the U.S. Senate in 1856

The horrific caning of Charles Sumner on the floor of the Senate in 1856 marked one of the most divisive moments in U.S. political history.
Ellen and William Craft

Passing for White to Escape Slavery

Passing for white was an intentional strategy that enslaved people used to free themselves from bondage.
Toni Morrison

Toni Morrison’s Operatic Life

Toni Morrison was renowned for the musicality of her prose, so writing lyrics for classical music wasn't a huge stretch.
Frances Wright, 1881

Nashoba: Not So Interracial, Not So Utopian

In the 1820s, Frances Wright established a community whose major project was the emancipation of enslaved people. Why did it crash and burn?
Writer Ta-Nehisi Coates testifies during a hearing on slavery reparations held by the House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Civil Liberties on June 19, 2019.

The Case for Reparations Is Nothing New

In fact, Black activists and civil rights leaders have been advocating for compensation for the trauma and cost of slavery for centuries.