Beyond Jamestown: Why 1619 Matters in African and Atlantic World Contexts

November 13, 2019

Professor Vinson speaking to the audience

On November 13, Robert Trent Vinson, the Frances L. and Edwin L. Cummings Professor of History and Africana Studies at William and Mary visited VCU to discuss how the story of the 1619 trans-Atlantic journeys of “20 and odd Negroes” does not begin with Jamestown. His research reveals that other English colonies like Bermuda and Barbados were far more significant in England’s rapid rise as the world’s leading slave trading nation in the 18th century. In addition, Vinson compelled the audience to think about the history of the African people prior to enslavement and the human toll of the forced migration of approximately 12.5 million enslaved Africans to the Americas between 1502 and 1870.

The lecture was presented by the Alexandrian Society at VCU with the support of the Department of History and the Student Government Association.