Important Message about LEARN NC

LEARN NC is evaluating its role in the current online education environment as it relates directly to the mission of UNC-Chapel Hill School of Education (UNC-CH SOE). We plan to look at our ability to facilitate the transmission of the best research coming out of UNC-CH SOE and other campus partners to support classroom teachers across North Carolina. We will begin by evaluating our existing faculty and student involvement with various NC public schools to determine what might be useful to share with you.

Don’t worry! The lesson plans, articles, and textbooks you use and love aren’t going away. They are simply being moved into the new LEARN NC Digital Archive. While we are moving away from a focus on publishing, we know it’s important that educators have access to these kinds of resources. These resources will be preserved on our website for the foreseeable future. That said, we’re directing our resources into our newest efforts, so we won’t be adding to the archive or updating its contents. This means that as the North Carolina Standard Course of Study changes in the future, we won’t be re-aligning resources. Our full-text and tag searches should make it possible for you to find exactly what you need, regardless of standards alignment.

slave trade memorial at Zanzibar

A memorial to slaves in Zanzibar, Tanzania, an East African port once important in the Indian Ocean slave trade. Image source. About the photograph

Not everyone who migrated to America came voluntarily. Between 1650 and 1860, as many as 15 million people were kidnapped in Africa, forced onto ships, carried to the Americas, and sold into slavery. Slavery was legal in Carolina from its beginning, and the first slaves arrived in the 1680s. But only in the eighteenth century did slavery in North Carolina begin to grow. By the time of the Revolution, slavery was firmly established throughout the South, and African-Americans — nearly all of them enslaved — made up more than a quarter of all North Carolinians.

We’ll begin this chapter by examining the cultures and societies of West Africa and West Central Africa, the regions from which most of the slaves in the American South came. Next we’ll take a hard — and uncomfortable — look at the slave trade itself, through the eyes of the people who experienced it. We’ll end by remembering what African people did in America to preserve their cultures and traditions — and to create new ones.