Blogger, BlackThen asks, ‘Was The First Slave Owner In America A Black Man?’ | Black Then  

The answer is a clear, No.  This claim is just wrong and clearly propagandistic on many levels as respondents Vanguard and atwilliams8 indicated in reply to this ahistorical nugget.

First, this is propaganda because it masks the racial development of early America. The man, John Punch, referred to by atwilliams8, lived at a time when slavery was rapidly becoming racialized against Africans brought into the English colonies of Virginia and Maryland. Historians like John Thornton and Peter Wood refer to the period as the Terrible Transformation or the Downward Spiral. Within two generations Anthony the Angolan’s descendants had no hope of owning property as their racial cohort were reduced to perpetual bondage.

But this is also just wrong because it pretends that Virginia was the first site in mainland America to which enslaved Africans were taken. Beginning in 1526 there were hundreds of Africans taken to the Spanish held territories in areas that would become SC and FL. San Miguel de Gualdape, St. Augustine, St. Helena were some of those settlements.

But, the flyer at the bottom reveals the intent. This little half-told history is supposed to undercut white culpability for 339 years of enslavement on american soil. Not gonna happen. Black people were caught up in a dehumanizing system that whites created for their own benefit.


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