Jun 15, 2020 2020-06-15
Produced by Historic Hudson Valley, People Not Property introduces students, teachers, and the interested public to the history of Northern enslavement, separate from the more familiar history of antebellum Southern slavery, by exploring history through personal stories. People Not Property is divided into four broad topics: Defining Slavery traces how white Europeans introduced slavery to the Northern colonies and used laws to entrench slavery systematically in the colonies. Being Enslaved explores the lives of enslaved individuals, particularly through family relationships, as well as the knowledge and skills enslaved people possessed. Choosing Resistance considers various courses of action that enslaved people took—individually and collectively—to respond to captivity, as well as the potential consequences. And Pursuing Justice traces the gradual ending of slavery and the legacy of slavery today. While these topics build on each other, they may be viewed in any order. The program’s many interactive features are designed to stand on their own so they can easily be integrated into a classroom lesson. The features include live-action videos, animations, questionnaires, annotated primary documents, and storybooks that combine both images and text. Transcripts of all videos are available by request. Teachers will find guides that provide a pathway for exploring the challenging subject of slavery in today’s classrooms, as well as an integrated arts/social studies curriculum, which includes historic documents that describe people fleeing enslavement and more. A TimeMap charts slavery’s rise, growth, and gradual decline in the Northern colonies, and indicates historical milestones. It also includes links to the website’s featured content. Additional resources include a Glossary, Bibliography, and Related Links.
Plus: Studying the history of Northern slavery can be challenging, as primary documents about enslaved people were almost always written from the perspective of their enslavers. This video introduces students to the sources that historians used and the questions they asked in conducting research on slavery in the colonial North. Historians and artists discuss how and why they use research to piece together the lives and experiences of those who were enslaved.