Postcard of The Rex Float at Mardi Gras Carnival, New Orleans, Louisiana.

The Strange Career of Beautiful Crescent

How an old textbook lodged itself in the heart of New Orleans’ self-mythology.
Illustrations from Twelve Years a Slave, by Solomon Northup, 1853, depicting an African American man hugging his family.

A Dark Cloud over Enjoyment

Refusing myths of joy and pain in slave narratives.
Jennifer L. Morgan portrayed beside her book

Black Feminist in Public: Jennifer L. Morgan Reckons with Slavery

On the intersectionality of enslaved women and common misunderstandings about slavery.

Why Confederate Lies Live On

For some Americans, history isn’t the story of what actually happened; it’s the story they want to believe.

Black America’s Neglected Origin Stories

The history of Blackness on this continent is longer and more varied than the version I was taught in school.
Original bars on a window are seen in the basement of the Freedom House Museum in Alexandria, Va.

The Deep Cruelty of U.S. Traders of Enslaved People Didn’t Bother Most Americans

Debunking the myths of the domestic slave trade.
engraving of Harriet Beecher Stowe

A Forgotten 19th-Century Story Can Help Us Navigate Today’s Political Fractures

Reconciliation is good — but not at any cost.
Performers in "Black America" posing in their costumes

Black America, 1895

The bizarre and complex history of Black America, a theatrical production which revealed the conflicting possibilities of self-expression in a racist society.

Her Sentimental Properties

White women have trafficked in Black women’s milk.

The Patriot Slave

The dangerous myth that blacks in bondage chose not to be free in revolutionary America.

A Very Lost Cause Love Affair

Is it possible to write a good Civil War romance?
Crowd gathered around statue for Stonewall Jackson memorial dedication, Charlottesville, 1921.

UVA and the History of Race: The Lost Cause Through Judge Duke’s Eyes

A profile of UVA graduate R.T.W. Duke Jr., who presided over the 1924 dedication of the Robert E. Lee statue in Charlottesville.

How We Think About the Term 'Enslaved' Matters

The first Africans who came to America in 1619 were not ‘enslaved’, they were indentured – and this is a crucial difference.

Dear Disgruntled White Plantation Visitors, Sit Down

Michael W. Twitty on the changing tides of plantation interpretation.

The Curious History of Anthony Johnson: From Captive African to Right-Wing Talking Point

Certain pundits are misrepresenting the biography of the "first black slaveholder."
African American re-enactor dressed as a Confederate.

How the Myth of Black Confederates Was Born

And how a handful of black Southerners helped perpetuate it after the Civil War.
African men in slave pens in Washington D.C. circa 1849-1850.

How Has Failed African American Customers

The genealogy site fails to understand the fundamental differences between white and black history.

The Mistress's Tools

White women and the economy of slavery.

Equal-Opportunity Evil

A new book shows that for female slaveholders, the business of human exploitation was just as profitable as it was for men.

The ‘Loyal Slave’ Photo That Explains the Northam Scandal

The governor’s yearbook picture, like many images before it, reinforces the belief that blacks are content in their oppression.