African Words

A chart outlining the translations and different dialects of African words.

Read Felicia Pride's tribute to The Black Book.



Joseph Cinque, a leader of the Amistad revolt that eventually became a legal case tried in the U.S. Supreme Court.

Caution Colored People of Boston


An 1851 notice cautioning black people who lived in Boston to avoid police officers because they had the authority to act as slave catchers.

Underground Railroad Revised


A map illustrating parts of the underground railroad around Pennsylvania.

Public Sale


An advertisement for a slave sale in Charleston, S.C., of “mostly house servants, some for field work.”

Priscilla Wharfield's 'Jungle Fever'


News clipping from a Pennsylvania newspaper about the violent punishment of a married woman who allegedly committed “adultery with a negro man” in 1885.

John Brown Escorted to Lynching


Abolitionist John Brown as he’s escorted by police to his hanging in 1859.

Southern Disturbances


A news roundup of “disturbances” in the south including the lynching of six “Negroes,” published in an 1874 edition of the Chicago Daily Tribune.

"So Clean and White"

An advertisement for soap that promises to turn dirty items “so clean and white.”


Aunt Jemima Blackfaced

A 1933 photo of white actress Tess Gardella in blackface as Aunt Jemima.

Man in the Moon


Sheet music for a “coon song” that allegedly sold 3 million copies.

Use These for Whiter Skin


An assortment of cosmetics featuring skin whiteners, bleach creams and pomades.

Granville T. Woods Telephone Patent


A patent for “new and useful improvements” to the telephone by black inventor Granville T. Woods, a contemporary of Thomas Edison.

"I'm Just Wild about Harry"


Sheet music for “I'm Just Wild about Harry,” a song written by Noble Sissle and Eubie Blake for the 1921 groundbreaking Broadway musical Shuffle Along.

The Role of the "Negro"


A quote by writer Henry Dumas.