All Weekend, Every Weekend. On C-SPAN3.

The Slavery Experience

Anthony Cohen talks as an audience volunteer tries on a slave collar

Anthony Cohen talks as an audience volunteer tries on a slave collar

Alexandria, Virginia
Friday, March 26, 2010

Historian Anthony Cohen, a fourth-generation descendant of a runaway slave, talked about his work exploring the American slavery experience, from his 1996 retracing of the Underground Railroad by foot to being shipped inside a wooden crate like Virginia fugitive Henry "Box" Brown. He also talked about the work of The Menare Foundation which he founded, including the Button Farm Living History Center. He used a PowerPoint presentation, including images from a 1998 mock slave auction held at the former Franklin and Armfield slave trading office in Alexandria. Mr. Cohen also demonstrated a replica of a type of slave collar and responded to questions from members of the audience.

"Unshackling History: Recreating Experiences from American Slavery" was a program of the Alexandria Historical Society held May 26, 2010, at the Lyceum Theatre in Alexandria, Virginia. This annual meeting of the society began with society business and the election of officers.

Updated: Thursday, July 26, 2012 at 8:31am (ET)

Related Events

American Artifacts: Mount Vernon’s Slave Quarters
Thursday, November 24, 2011     

We visited George Washington’s Mount Vernon, where visitors find newly re-interpreted slave quarters and a more historically accurate and nuanced depiction of slave life in 18th century Virginia. We hear from Dennis Pogue, Vice President of Preservation, and curator Susan Schoelwer, who tell us what archaeological research reveals about the enslaved people who worked Washington’s plantation.

19th Century Slave Trade
Saturday, June 23, 2012     

Albany Law School professor Paul Finkelman talks about the practice of kidnapping freemen from the North and sending them South during the 19th century. He also discusses the wide-spread practice of renting slaves and how this tied non-slave owners to the slave system. Paul Finkelman has taught classes and written about the slave trade for many years. This interview took place at the Organization of American Historians meeting in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
 

Honoring Slaves Who Built the U.S. Capitol
Sunday, July 25, 2010     

Congressional leaders unveiled two plaques honoring African-American slaves who helped build the U.S. Capitol. Historians say those slaves worked 12 hours days, six days a week. The Federal government rented those slaves from local slave owners at a rate of $5 per person per month.

American Artifacts: James Madison's Slaves
Sunday, March 11, 2012     

James Madison, the fourth President of the United States & often referred to as the "Father of the Constitution," owned about a hundred slaves at Montpelier, his 4600- acre estate in Orange County, Virginia.  American History TV traveled 90 miles south of the nation's capital to learn about an archaeological project investigating the enslaved communities of James Madison's Montpelier.

Stories of Fugitive Slaves
Saturday, July 14, 2012     

Vanderbilt University history professor Richard Blackett tells the stories of fugitive slaves, examining how they used the U.S. Mail to communicate with other slaves and how they planned and executed escapes to Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean. This event was hosted by Penn State University's Richards Civil War Era Center.

Slavery at Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello
Saturday, July 21, 2012     

Lucia Stanton, senior historian at Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello, has been studying and writing about Thomas Jefferson and his enslaved community for more than 30 years. In this program, she argues that the President sometimes treated his slaves as human beings and at other times as property. Using thousands of records kept by the third president, Stanton attempts to imagine what life was like from the point of view of the slaves. She is joined by historian Dianne Swann-Wright to discuss their ongoing oral history project that has collected the stories of over 170 descendants of Monticello’s slaves.

George Washington's "New Room" Restoration
Sunday     

We go to George Washington’s Mount Vernon estate to see what he called the “New Room” – which, after 14 months, $600,000, and extensive scientific and scholarly analysis, is once again a room he would recognize. The Mount Vernon Ladies Association, owners of Washington’s estate since 1858, believe that a room long thought to be used for dining was actually more of a statement room – one designed to project Washington’s own sense of himself as a gentleman farmer, Revolutionary War general and first president of the United States. We get an up close look at Mount Vernon’s grandest room and hear from the team of historians and curators behind its restoration. This event was hosted by Mount Vernon.

Civil Rights Summit - President Speeches
Sunday     

President Obama was joined last week by three predecessors – Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush – to mark the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which was signed into law by President Johnson. They each delivered remarks at the Civil Rights Summit hosted by the Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library in Austin, Texas.

50th Anniversary of New York Times v. Sullivan
Sunday     

Decided by the Warren Court in 1964, New York Times v. Sullivan was a landmark U.S. Supreme Court case, upholding the freedom of the press and greatly reducing the number of libel lawsuits. Attorneys Lee Levine and law professor Steve Wermiel tell the story of Justice Brennan’s struggle to thwart efforts to overturn the Sullivan case. Their new book is The Progeny: Justice William J. Brennan’s Fight to Preserve the Legacy of New York Times v. Sullivan. The Newseum hosted this event. 

Reel America: "The Treasury Story" 1969
Sunday     

A history of the U.S. Department of the Treasury, which was founded in 1789. Funded by the Treasury Dept., the film includes reenactments and documentary segments of employees engaged in Treasury activities ranging from the IRS to money printing, to the Secret Service.

Share This Event Via Social Media
Washington Journal (late 2012)
Questions? Comments? Email us at AmericanHistoryTV@c-span.org