Hosted by Atlantic Black Box
Rick Geffken explores how the brutal practice of chattel slavery was modeled elsewhere before it became entrenched in colonial New Jersey
Thursday, March 23, 2023 @ 5:00 pm
The historic enslavement of Black people in New Jersey wasn’t as simple as importing people directly from Africa. It involved cooperating and competing Europeans and Africans in places like Senegambia, Brazil, and Barbados. This talk will explore how the brutal practice of chattel slavery was modeled elsewhere before it became entrenched in colonial America where it persisted for two-hundred years. A follow-up session will reveal methodologies of research for uncovering the names of slaveholders and their enslaved, including primary sources, public and private records, family stories, and more.
About the speaker:
Rick Geffken is the author of Stories of Slavery in New Jersey (2021). He taught a class on New Jersey slavery for Monmouth University in West Long Branch and is a member of the New Jersey Slavery Records Index project under the auspices of Rutgers University. Rick is an active member of the New Jersey Social Justice Reconciliation Committee and was instrumental in placing a memorial plaque in Eatontown, the 1886 site of the only recorded lynching of a Black man in New Jersey. He was also successful in convincing Middletown Township to erect a commemorative plaque at Cedar View Cemetery, purchased by fourteen free Black men in 1850.