Black Christians : NORTH TO FREEDOM!? Slavery in the New England States...

Discussion in 'Christian Study Group' started by Chevron Dove, May 5, 2011.

  1. Chevron Dove

    Chevron Dove Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    NORTH TO FREEDOM!? Slavery in the New England States of Colonial America~


    I was just recently looking into some history about the New England states and stumbled across an unusual story about the life of a little slave girl who lived her whole life as a slave in New England and was never freed. My interest was further peaked when I had the chance to travel through a few New England states not too long ago. As I happened to drive through Connecticut, I became completely surprised when I saw an incredible number of Black people out and about in almost a completely black neighborhood. I couldn’t believe my eyes at first. I decided to just drive around for awhile to see what I could and after I turned down street after street in a certain area, all that I saw were Black people, mostly dark skinned Black people, in lower income neighborhoods where there were welfare buildings nearby, and many huge dilapidated homes and buildings as well. I was stunned to see that, although many of the gigantic old plank wooden styled homes were in real bad shape, they were so unique in their architecture. They reminded me of the huge many storied and multi-roomed plantation homes in the deep south built in slavery times yet in New England, they were dark colored and they had tall roof tops that covered huge attic rooms made differently from the southern homes. They were mostly gabled-styled arched roofs and there was so many of these houses built right next to each other, side by side. They lined the streets on both sides and were so enormous that they shaded the streets as if they were tall old oak trees but there were few trees, just these grand old-styled homes on street, after street, after street. It was nothing like I had ever seen before not even in the ghettos and project areas of the District of Columbia where I had once lived. I saw many Black people just walking down streets, sitting on porches of these large homes, or going in and out of markets and various other shops. Equally surprising too, most of the shops had names that either reflected a Jamaican, West Indies, or some other kind of African culture. It suddenly became apparent to me that because I am from the north, I assumed that I knew all that there was to know about being a northerner, but to my surprise I was mistaken.

    I now wonder if my preconceived notion of the north might be due to a deliberate design byway of our educational system. Also, by not ever visiting any New England state during my young years, I now realize the value ‘field trips’ and recognize too, that I have been deprived of knowing the total truth regarding America. Without this reality, that out of the original thirteen colonies, the New England country takes up a huge chunk of land mass and therefore should comprise a vast amount of unique history? Although the huge states of Maine and Vermont and other areas in that region were not known as such in early times, I now realize that they were still once considered to be parts of the other original colonies especially Massachusetts and, this information would be strategic when in later times many names changes took place that covered up history. Also, without knowing the uniqueness that would actually separate the New England country from the other northern states and the southern states of the thirteen colonies, a large part of the whole truth is missing! What makes the New England states markedly unique from the other northern states? What makes all of the northern states different from the southern states? Now I was taught that the main differences between the north and the south revolved around religion, trade, but most of all, slavery, meaning, slavery and the slave trade did not exist physically in the north--Oh but after seeing and reading about the history of New England on my own, I’m not sure. Something seems lacking in this part of history. The signs are there that there was slavery in the north, way far up north, but much of the history of it seems to have been hidden. This history seems to be slowly unfolding though, just as a recent book by an African authoress of whom recently wrote about slavery as it existed in Canada and of which I have just learned about in this forum!

    Research shows that much of the early presence in certain places in the far north like Connecticut of Black African Americans before and during colonial times and even as they did exist much later in time in the Civil Rights times have recently been overshadowed by a massive movement of Black African immigrants of whom have swarmed there at some recent point in time. Oddly though and after more research, I kind of feel like many of these newcomers may really not be immigrants after all. Some early American books written about northeast America recounted history about natives in this region and although subtle, many of these natives are seemingly Black natives, yes, Black African-typed people indigenous to this land and of whom were completely done in by the European movements who sought to obliterate them from their lands and from history. The adjectives that would have possibly defined their blackness though, have been downplayed under other selected names but nonetheless, there are some faint truths that seem to be evident in some stories. One book written that I have referenced called, Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, by Dee Brown, lays out general replay of what happened in these New England states and how the natives were so viciously attacked and pitted against each other to fight to the death. Although Brown too is a White man, he describes how the white Europeans targeted and attacked the native villages and spread all kinds of diseases in the attempt to genocide them all and when they could not succeed in this manner, they set the villages ablaze with fire when the natives were asleep, killing many in a great sweep. Lastly though, we need to ask what happened to the remaining survivors of all these massacres and large scale attack methods!? It was written by Brown and other authors as well, that the remaining survivors of all other methods of annihilation, were all gathered up, chained and bound, and shipped off from the cold snow driven north to be enslaved in hot humid places with cool tropical breezes like the islands of the West Indies! Cont.


    Dee Brown's Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee was first published in the United States in 1970.…

    Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee Summary
    Chapter 1: ‘‘Their Manners are Decorous and Praiseworthy’’

    Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee begins with an overview of the relations between Native Americans and white settlers from the late-1400s to the mid-1800s. Initially peaceful, these relations become more tense as white emigration from Europe to the United States increases.
    http://www.enotes.com/bury-heart-wounded-knee

    *Note: the Title of this chapter was further explained by Brown that it was the words of Columbus to the Spanish court about the first natives that he encountered when he went to the islands and then it was shown how Columbus and other Europeans totally disregarded the natives and severely entreated them, dominated them, enslaved them and devastated the lands.

    Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven. For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost.

    Even so it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven, that one of these little ones should perish.
    ST MATTHEW 18: 10, 11, 14.​
     
  2. Chevron Dove

    Chevron Dove Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    North to Freedom!? Slavery in the New England States of Colonial America~
    Cont.

    Aha!--So ironically, many of immigrants from Jamaica and other islands of the Caribbean (West Indies) today, may not be immigrants, in essence, at all! Wow! Seems like poetic justice to me! At any rate, long before these times and after many natives were indeed shipped off to become enslaved in the West Indies, White opportunist like the famous White man and writer, Mark Twain, came to live in what he describes basically as being his heaven, in the beautiful New England countryside of Connecticut. Ironically too, it was he who has been reportedly the one who wrote that famous quote in an 1882 article that “a lie well told is immortal”, and after research, I believe that this quote may not be so invincible after all. Could it be that due to some white guilt these Black immigrants from the West Indies have been helped to come back to New England and repaint history or, either out of sheer coincidence many of them just decided to leave the tropical islands in search of being in a region completely different from their enslaved past? Who knows? Someone knows but perhaps, they may have tried to hide the truth under well told lies.

    However, when these early victims were forced out of their lands to the West Indies, the details of their physical presence has been downplayed but today we can see for ourselves that many of the Jamaicans and Haitians that have come to the Americas are indeed dark skinned Black African-typed people! So something happened. What happened? Were all the victims that were shipped off ‘straight haired’ natives? This story about a little slave girl might shed some light on what happened and also reveal too, that many of these natives may not have been shipped out at all!--but rather some of them might have been kept right here in their own lands and forced down into slavery until death. And what about the age old practice of the White man when they swapped Blacks from two regions, a practice that goes way back to the Bible, to the Assyrians? Were Native Jamaicans shipped out of the West Indians and also forced into a life of slavery in New England with other Africans while the natives here in North America were switched and shipped out to Jamaica? At any rate many Black people from the West Indies today are in Connecticut in thick concentrations yet their presence though, does not cover up other early Black History either. And, another famous White author of whom also called Connecticut her home, in a strange way, might shed more light on this issue of slavery in New England; Harriet Beecher Stowe.

    Although I have not read her famous book yet, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, I was always led to believe that Harriet’s plight to end slavery was based upon the deep south and I was just not interested in reading another book from that perspective, but now after research, I am surprised to see that she being of the north, may have been sparked to fight against slavery not only by what she knew of that occurred in the deep south but also, by what she witnessed all around her right there in Connecticut! And this now brings me to the story of the little Black slave girl named, Nancy Toney, who was totally enslaved for her entire life right there in Connecticut and not too far away from the whereabouts of Harriet Beecher Stowe. I believe that a recount of this incredible sad life thrown away at the expense of White Supremacy might help to understand how we may have been misled about the true history of America, in that everything bad and awful happened in the deep south, when in reality, it had to have begun right there in New England in the far northeast as well. Just by looking at how our history came out of England, it seems obvious that New England was also a model upon which all other White Colonist aspired to be like. New England must have been viewed as being the glorious northern country to other states in the north as well as the south. In other words, it seems like the New England country was at once only considered to be the north, and an imaginary Mason-Dixon line for the south may have at once included states like New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, long before there became a real and accepted division much further south between Maryland and Virginia. If anyone has driven on the New Jersey Turnpike headed north and on through the fast and furious pace on the highways of New York and on highways like highway 95 and finally exit off and into the state of Connecticut, they might know what I mean when I say that there seems to be an abruptness to the sudden change of environment and for me the feeling was is exonerating.

    For me, it’s a sensation like going from hell to heaven on earth. I used to imagine on my way north that I was fleeing from the enslavement of the south headed to freedom and when I got to Delaware, I began to feel a sense of bliss and then I pushed onward northwards through New York until I had gotten to Connecticut and then it seemed like it was time to relax. But now after reading about this little slave girl, I feel like I need a new sensation of heaven, sort of like a lift off from this earth to another safe haven, and north to freedom in another direction to a real heaven that this earth can not provide for me today. Just when I think I’m okay and have come to terms with history, I seemed to always be faced with a new reality in that I have been deceived once again…So now I delve into the life of this little slave girl, Nancy in search of more answers.

    The details that revolve around the story of this little slave girl Nancy were scattered but after the pieces have been put together, it seems so incredible. Much of the details about her life had to be extracted from the bigger story of the grandeur of the lives of the white people that enslaved her and how they viewed certain issues with respect to American slavery and law. Therefore, her plight can perhaps be better understood based upon an understanding of the in depth stories of the highly cultured lives of the white people that took her freedom from her completely. Also, because of the jigsaw fashion too, of details presented about certain specific family members and others in how they directly related to her throughout her incredible existence, I found that in order to grasp a better understanding of her state of being and also of the justified mindset of White America at that time, it would be beneficial if I laid out the story by date and try to fill in some gaps by expounding on other bits of history during the long time periods in which she was made to exist on this earth. Indeed, she was made to live for a long time and died at the age of about 82 years old!

    One of the family members of whom became a famous painter was the man that actually painted her and he did so of her when she became a woman. And although all of the many internet links that featured this oil painting of her had basically been deleted, I searched and searched relentlessly until I was at least able to find a rough remake of her image on a community patchwork quilt reproduced from the actual oil painting. Once I laid eyes upon her image, Wow!--She remained on my mind continuously. All the while I read about her I wondered about each of the white people that lived around her and how in the world could they have justified destroying the life of this little Black African girl while being able to be free to do whatever it was that they had wanted to do and go wherever they wanted to go? What made this artist feel the desire to finally sit down one day and draw this Black African girl that grew up to become an old woman?


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  3. Light

    Light Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Nice work;

    I learned from you...
     
  4. Chevron Dove

    Chevron Dove Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    OH MY GOODNESS!!!

    Thank you!
     
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