"In the Beginning, all America was Virginia."
William Byrd II
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The African American Experience in Virginia: Slavery and Emancipation

This program examines the African American experience in Virginia from the earliest sighting of Africans in Virginia in 1619, through the seventeenth century beginnings of enslavement to emancipation. In addition to the history of the institution, this program will bring a focus on African cultural traditions like music, family celebrations, and foodways; students will learn some of the many African and African American responses to slavery, including Nat Turner’s rebellion, the Underground Railroad, and John Brown’s raid on Harpers Ferry.

This program involves the active participation of the entire class as students:

  • trace the history of slavery throughout the first half of American history and examine replica artifacts related to early African American life in Virginia
  • describe the interactions between the newly arrived Africans, the English settlers and the native peoples in 17th century Virginia
  • describe how the practice of slavery became codified through legal acts
  • discuss elements of African American life and cultural traditions
  • identify some of the many responses to slavery and the impact of those responses on Emancipation

Scheduling for this program is available through the Center for Interactive Learning and Collaboration (CILC) website.

Evan Liddiard

Evan Liddiard, Senior Education Specialist

Are you interested in learning more about our interactive video conferencing programs? I can help you schedule a program or answer any questions you may have. Feel free to contact me at eliddiard@vahistorical.org or 804.342.9689.

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