A cautionary tale that went untold for two centuries
Hosted by Boston By Foot
Monday, May 17, 2021 | 7:00 – 8:00 p.m. ET
On August 1, 1819, a majestic Maine-built ship docked at Boston’s Long Wharf, completing a nearly year-long voyage to West Africa and the West Indies that only a few crew members were fortunate enough to survive. This dramatic story features a prominent Yankee sea captain, a tragedy on the high seas, a viral outbreak, a major political cover up, and a conspiracy of silence that has lasted two centuries surrounding New England’s involvement in the slave trade. Following these historical threads into the present day allows us to consider the ways in which our region’s repressed history of complicity with the business of slavery relates to our current national conversations about race, privilege, identity, and access to the “American dream.”
Meadow Dibble is a Visiting Scholar at Brown University’s Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice. She received her Ph.D. from Brown’s Department of French with a focus on postcolonial studies and taught Francophone African literature at Colby College from 2005–08. Originally from Cape Cod, Meadow lived for six years on Senegal’s Cape Verde peninsula prior to pursuing her graduate studies, where she published a cultural magazine and coordinated foreign study programs. In 2016, she experienced a brutal awakening to the reality of her hometown’s deep investment in the global slave economy. In the years since, Meadow has been assiduously researching complicity among Cape Cod’s sea captains while developing The Atlantic Black Box Project.