17th-Century Origins of Slavery in Maryland

June 20, 2019 @ 7:00 pm
Visitor Center Auditorium
18751 Hogaboom Ln
St Marys City, MD 20686
Visitor Center
(240) 895-4990

Meet at the Visitor Center Auditorium.

Histories of enslavement in the Chesapeake often describe the 17th century as a “society with slaves” and the 18th century as a “slave society.”  While this statement accurately reflects the sharp increase in enslaved Africans brought forcibly into the region beginning at the end of the 17th century, it does little to explain the institution’s roots.  In this lecture, Dr. Travis Parno uses the story of Antonio, an enslaved man who died resisting his enslavement in 1656, to discuss the origins of slavery in Maryland.  He highlights the influence of other English colonies such as Barbados and Virginia, as well as the role of the elite Marylanders who introduced the practice to the colony and ensured its survival through the passage of significant legislation.