Tag Archives: African Americans

Samuel Cornish, John Russwurm, and the Early Black Press

In March 1827, Rev. Samuel Cornish and John Russwurm co-founded Freedom’s Journal in New York City. It served as the first African-American newspaper in the United States and commemorated the 50th anniversary-year of the first American anti-slavery statutes in the 1777 Vermont Constitution. One of their primary objectives in starting Freedom’s Journal was to combat ...

On the Poetry of Phillis Wheatley

With the publication of Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral (London, 1773) [AAS online catalog record], Phillis Wheatley became the first published African American poet. Because of her status as a house slave in Boston, Massachusetts, she achieved high literary recognition in the years following publication. Prominent political figures like George Washington and Thomas ...

Join us for “Liberty and Justice for All”

This Thursday, May 12, at 7:30 p.m., James O. and Lois E. Horton will present “Liberty and Justice for All: The Civil War as Blacks’ Second American Revolution.” Directions to AAS and further information about this and other public programs are available on the AAS website. Describing the scope of their lecture, Professor ...

AAS Helped Compile an Early African American Bibliography


Toward the end of his now-famous 1897 Atlantic Monthly essay, "Strivings of the Negro People," W.E.B. DuBois states that the post-Civil War years brought for African Americans “the ideal of book-learning, the curiosity, born of compulsory ignorance.” Historians may note DuBois’ ultimate discontent with this ideal -- the longing to achieve freedom through ‘book-learning” ...

Mark Your Calendars for a Week from Today

William Wells Brown: A ReaderWilliam Wells Brown: A Reader

Thursday, February 25 – 7:30 p.m. at the American Antiquarian Society
Researching and Writing African American Biography: The Life of William Wells Brown
by Ezra Greenspan

William Wells Brown: A Reader Prof. Greenspan’s illustrated talk combines two stories: a narrative of the life of the most prolific and pioneering African American writer of the nineteenth century, and an account of a biographer’s journey to present that life to a twenty-first-century public.