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#AceNewsRoom With ‘Kindness & Wisdom’ July.26, 2022 @acehistorynews
#AceHistoryDesk – Today in History – Joseph Jenkins Roberts declared Liberia, formerly a colony of the American Colonization Society, an independent republic on July 26, 1847. He was elected the first president of the republic in 1848.
A native of Petersburg, Virginia, Roberts immigrated to Liberia in 1829 at the age of twenty under the auspices of the American Colonization Society. The Society was organized in late December 1816 by a group that included Henry Clay, James Monroe, Andrew Jackson, Francis Scott Key, Bushrod Washington, and Daniel Webster. The colonization scheme, controversial from the outset among blacks and whites alike, was conceived as an alternative to emancipation. The idea grew from the recognition of the difficulty that the Republic would face should it choose the path of becoming an integrated nation.
This map was compiled chiefly from the surveys and observations of the Reverend Jehudi Ashmun, who led the settlement of what was to become the country of Liberia.
With difficulty, funds were found for the venture and, after an initial unsuccessful attempt, a colony was finally founded in Mesurado Bay on Providence Island in 1822. Reverend Ashmun negotiated with the native people to grant a tract of land at Cape Mesurado at the mouth of the St. Pauls River.
Expansion of the original colony at times resulted in conflict with indigenous Africans. The colony grew as it became a home for freed African Americans and slaves released from the West Indies and from slave ships as well as many native tribal people. Nevertheless, confrontations between the descendants of African Americans and indigenous tribes have remained a factor in Liberian politics through the twentieth century.
Learn more about the colonization movement in the online exhibition The African-American Mosaic: A Library of Congress Resource Guide for the Study of Black History & Culture. The first section of the exhibition, entitled “Colonization,” includes an overview of the origins of the American Colonization Society and the founding and early history of Liberia. Of particular interest is a treaty between the American Colonization Society and African tribal leaders for rights to tribal lands along the Grain Coast and on major rivers leading inland.
- There are many images of New York State’s lakes, rivers, falls, and other natural wonders in the Library’s collections. Browse the Subjectsin Photos, Prints, and Drawings collections to see the variety available. Or, browse Detroit Publishing Company to locate additional images. For example, there are close to 200 views of Niagara Falls in this collection.
- Search on New York in Maps collections for a wide variety of maps of the state and its various regions.
- Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record/Historic American Landscapes Survey contains thousands of photographs and drawings of New York buildings.
- The Horydczak Collection also has images of New York State and New York City.
- A search on New York in the Van Vechten Collection yields more scenic views and images of statues than it does of portraits taken in New York City.
- Discover important conservation documents as well as related photographs in The Evolution of the Conservation Movement, 1850-1920.
- Find out more about the process of drafting and ratifying the Constitution. Browse Documents from the Continental Congress and the Constitutional Convention, 1774 to 1789 or see the special presentation To Form a More Perfect Union.
- For more information about New York, view Today in History features about Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, Columbia University in Manhattan, the Brooklyn Bridge, the Statue of Liberty, and the New York City Police Department.
- Among the maps included in Map Collections are the Maps of Liberia, 1830 to 1870.
- Also of interest is a series of documents on Liberia in African American Perspectives: Materials Selected from the Rare Book Collection; to locate this material, search the collection on Liberia.
- The Library’s Manuscript Division holds the collection of the American Colonization Society Records, 1792-1964. The Prints & Photographs Division holds images that are part of this collection.
- To develop a bibliography of works about Liberia, use the Browse Search menu of the Library of Congress Catalogs. Then, enter the term Liberia in the subject search page.
- Search on Liberia in The Church in the Southern Black Communitycollection to find documents about Liberia. This collection is included in the University of North Carolina/Chapel Hill’s Documenting the American South.
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