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Jeffrey Green

Civil servant and author born in British Guiana (now Guyana). He became postmaster at Victoria‐Belfield in the 1890s, where he organized a black self‐help group with social and agricultural ambitions. He transferred to the Gold Coast (now Ghana) Post Office in 1902. With his wife, Caroline, and five children he settled in Acton, west London. Three more children were born, but five (and their mother) were dead by 1919, and in 1920, in London, he married Edith Goring (who was born in Barbados and had taught in the Gold Coast, 1906–20).

Barbour‐James'sAgricultural and Industrial Possibilities of the Gold Coast was published in London in 1911. In 1917 he retired from the colonial postal service, and he worked with the African Progress Union from 1918 (his friend Kwamina Tandoh was president from 1924 to 1927 accompanied South African delegates to meet the Prime Minister ...

Article

Jeremy Rich

antislavery activist and a pioneering African American settler in Sierra Leone, was born around 1760 to a slave family on a plantation located not far from Charleston, then the capital of the British colony of South Carolina. His father was born in Africa.

He worked as child as a domestic servant but then at the age of nine was reassigned to prepare cattle hide At the age of twelve King joined the growing evangelical fervor of the First Great Awakening movement promoting a personal and emotional tie to Jesus Christ and became a fervent Protestant Christian King s life as a young man was full of suffering as he worked as an artisan in Charleston He was assigned to watch over his master s tools and was regularly beaten by his owner During the American Revolution King s master chose to move King to an inland location out of fear ...

Article

Kari J. Winter

slave, Loyalist during the American Revolution, carpenter, Methodist preacher, and memoirist, was born on a plantation near Charleston, South Carolina, the son of a literate African slave who worked as a driver and a mill cutter and an enslaved mother who made clothes and tended the sick, using herbal knowledge she gained from American Indians. At the age of six Boston King began waiting on his master, Richard Waring, in the plantation house. From age nine to sixteen, he was assigned to tend the cattle and horses, and he traveled with his master's racehorses to many places in America.

At sixteen King was apprenticed to a master carpenter Two years later he was placed in charge of the master s tools on two occasions when valuable items were stolen the master beat and tortured King so severely that he was unable to work for ...

Article

Joanna Brooks

Born into slavery near Charleston, South Carolina, Boston King followed his parents into labor on the plantation. His father was a native-born African, kidnapped and sold into slavery as a child; his mother was a healer who learned herbal medicine from local American Indians. At the age of sixteen, King was bound as an apprentice to a carpenter, who subjected him to cruel beatings. King fled his master when the British captured the city of Charleston during the American Revolutionary War, and he won his freedom by taking refuge behind British lines.

Many thousands of enslaved African Americans like Boston King gained freedom by joining the Loyalist forces during the Revolutionary War. British colonial and military officials promised freedom to black defectors twice during the war—with the Dunmore Proclamation of November 1775 and the Philipsburg Proclamation of General Henry Clinton in June 1779 in the hope of encouraging ...

Article

Jeremy Rich

abolitionist and governor of Sierra Leone, was born on 2 May 1768 in Inveraray, Scotland. His father John was a Protestant minister, and Zachary had eleven other siblings. One brother, Alexander, served in the British army in India. Another brother was a prominent Anglican priest. As for Zachary, his early life hardly indicated future greatness. In order to make a living, Macaulay left Scotland to work as an accountant on a Jamaican plantation.

The brutal violence of plantation slavery left a deep mark on Macaulay over time. By 1780 he returned to England rather than remain in the service of slavery There his brother Thomas Babington introduced Macaulay to evangelicals such as the tremendously active reformer and abolitionist William Wilberforce as well as Thomas Clarkson Macaulay became a member of the Clapham Sect a reformist association of evangelicals within the Anglican Church opposed to slavery and in favor of ...

Article

Nazneen Ahmed

Philanthropist instrumental in the founding of the Anti‐Slavery Society. The eldest of twelve children of a Scottish minister, at 14 Macaulay was placed in a merchant's office in Glasgow. In 1784 he was sent Jamaica, where he eventually became the manager of a plantation. His experiences during the eight years he spent in the West Indies caused him to dislike and eventually oppose the system of slavery. In 1796 he was appointed Governor of the Sierra Leone colony for freed slaves, which had been established by Granville Sharp and Henry Thornton in 1791. He resigned from the post in 1799, returning to England to attempt to end the institution of slavery and with 40 African children who were to be educated in Clapham.

Macaulay married Selina Mills in 1799 and was father to nine children including the distinguished historian Thomas Babington Macaulay He was a prominent ...

Article

Jeremy Rich

African American activist and an administrator in Liberia, was born in Port Antonio, Jamaica, on 1 October 1799. His father was an American businessman of German descent who had worked in Port Antonio. Russwurm’s mother was an African-descended slave about whom there are no records. Some accounts claim Russwurm was the product of rape, while others asserted that Russwurm’s mother was a house servant of his father. It is also unclear if Russwurm was immediately freed by his father or if he was a slave during his childhood.

Russwurm seems to have received a primary school education until he moved to Quebec, Canada, around 1807. By 1812 Russwurm and his father had moved from Canada to Portland Maine There Russwurm s father married a widow named Susan Blanchard Russwurm developed a very close relationship with his stepmother and she insisted that his father name him John Brown ...

Article

Born John Brown to a slave mother and a white American merchant father in Jamaica, he became John Russwurm when his stepmother demanded that his father acknowledge by name his paternity. Sent to Quebec for schooling, Russwurm was taken by his father to Portland, Maine, in 1812. He attended Hebron Academy in Hebron, Maine, and graduated in 1826 from Bowdoin College, one of the first black graduates of an American college. In his graduation speech he advocated the resettlement of American blacks to Haiti.

Moving to New York, New York, in 1827, Russwurm helped found Freedom's Journal with Samuel E(li) Cornish. It was the first black-owned and black-printed newspaper in the United States. The paper employed itinerant black abolitionists and urged an end to Southern slavery and Northern inequality. In February of 1829 he stopped publishing the paper and accepted a position ...

Article

Penelope Campbell

journalist and first nonwhite governor of Maryland in Liberia Colony, West Africa, was born in Port Antonio, Jamaica, the son of John Russwurm, a white American merchant, and an unidentified Jamaican black woman. As a boy known only as John Brown, Russwurm was sent to Canada for an education by his father. After his father's settlement in Maine and marriage in 1813 to a white New England widow with children, he entered the new family at his stepmother's insistence. John Brown thereupon assumed his father's surname and remained with his stepmother even after the senior Russwurm's death in 1815 His schooling continued at home and later at preparatory institutes such as the North Yarmouth Academy in Maine He made a short unhappy visit to Jamaica and returned to Portland Maine to begin collegiate study Thrown on his own after just one year because of his sponsor ...

Article

Diane L. Barnes

John Brown Russwurm was born in Port Antonio, Jamaica, to a white merchant, John Russwurm, and an unidentified black woman. John Brown Russwurm spent his early years in Jamaica and was sent to Canada in 1807 or 1808 to obtain a formal education. In 1813 his father remarried and brought Russwurm to Maine to join his new extended family. Russwurm remained in the care of his stepmother, Susan Blanchard, even after his father's untimely death in 1815, when he began a series of short appointments as an instructor at schools in Philadelphia, Boston, and New York.

In 1826 Russwurm earned a bachelor of arts degree from Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine. Among his classmates were Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and Nathaniel Hawthorne, and the future president Franklin Pierce had graduated the year before In such illustrious company Russwurm was designated to give the graduation oration In a commencement ...

Article

William L. Andrews

Born a slave in Jamaica, John Browne Russwurm was sent by his white father to Quebec in 1807 to go to school. In his early teens Russwurm rejoined his father in Portland, Maine, where he was given an opportunity to continue his intellectual development. In 1824, Russwurm enrolled in Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine, from which he graduated in 1826 with one of the first bachelor's degrees earned by an African American in the United States.

Migrating to New York, Russwurm formed a partnership with Samuel Cornish, a black Presbyterian minister, to found a newspaper. The result of their partnership was Freedom's Journal, the first African American newspaper in the United States, launched on 16 March 1827. Freedom's Journal was offered for sale in the United States, Canada, England, and Haiti. David Walker, one of the newspaper's agents, first published his powerful Appeal in Freedom ...