The African Burial Ground Essay

The African Burial Ground Essay

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The African Burial Ground located in the Lower Manhattan section of New York City is a National Monument dedicated to the thousands of African slaves who were forcibly taken from their native homelands into a life of servitude by Europeans. These slaves were brought to New York before it became the great city that is now today and forced to work to build it into a stable colony without any compensation. Approximately 15,000 are estimated to be buried within the burial ground. The remains of men, women and children of all ages were found at the site and their remains provide further proof of the cruel and violent injustices slaves had to face at the hands of their slavers.
For years the burial ground was a forgotten part of American history until it was rediscovered in 1991. The site was then designated as historical landmark and later a national monument. Today the burial ground stands in the middle of the bustling city streets and is rather subtle, in the sense that it won’t be immediately noticeable to passersby, however, the site itself is quite beautiful and a worthwhile visit to make. The monument also has an indoor memorial, which accurately depicts some aspects of slave life and how slaves managed to maintain their African culture in spite of their circumstances.
Upon entering the exhibit, the first thing that caught my eye was the lifelike wax sculptures at the center of the room depicting a group of slaves participating in a funeral ceremony with two coffins at the center. One large coffin capable of fitting an adult and a smaller coffin presumably of a young child. The significance of the inclusion of a child’s coffin is an example of how slave life was hard on everyone, including the children of slaves who were slaves...


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...n in the revolutionary war and increasing number of free Africans in New York. The increasing number of free was due to the introduction of gradual emancipation laws which slowly phased out slavery granting many enslaved Africans their freedom after a set number of years. From this a number of black leaders emerged to form their churches, businesses, schools within American society to create better lives for themselves.
The African Burial Ground to me represents an important part of American History and the memorial in Lower Manhattan does justice to the struggles of our people. In a time where some people would rather forget or whitewash this aspect of American History I believe that it is even more imperative that we continue to acknowledge the past so that we do not repeat our mistakes. By accurately depicting the atrocities of slavery in America, the burial ground

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