My Beautiful Wickedness

July 5th…the other Independence Day.
July 5, 2007, 12:17 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

As I mentioned in a prior post, July 5th was a “protest” Independence Day for free African-Americans in the antebellum US, especially those who lived in New York. You may not realize this, but slavery in the north did not die immediately after the American Revolution. Vermont (not one of the original colonies, mind you) banned slavery outright as incompatible with liberty, but the rest of the northern states — and the newly added northwestern ones too — took a winding path to emancipation. The significance of the July 5th date? For July 5th, 1827, the day that New York’s enslaved people went free. Not equal, but not slaves.

I’ve been citing to a number of my historian crushes lately (people I’ve worked with, people I like, people who have influenced me in the way I practice history), so let me direct you to a piece written in part by James O. Horton

So Kat? If you feel like you need a July 5th to recover from July 4th, go right ahead. You’re just showing solidarity with your brothers and sisters still in bondage.

Or maybe your baseball and fireworks combo got rained out and you’re going to try again today. That happened to us last night.


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