AfriGeneas Genealogy and History Forum
Arne's post on Norway
In Response To: Re: "Let sleeping dogs lie." ()
I'm continually amazed by the Scandinavian/European interest in African American history. Arts critics and historians from across the pond were always in the forefront of appreciating Jazz as America's Original Art Form.
I read your comments about slave ship owners from Norway. Your research is intriguing because another fellow Scandinavian jazz historian is working on census and slave records.
You may have heard of him, Danish author, Chris Albertson? "Bessie”? The life of Bessie Smith? (Wink). I called Chris today and mentioned your research. He was surprised and delighted by the news. I told him that I was not aware that Norway was involved in the slave trade. He explained that Norway during the height of slavery was part of Denmark.
Chris Albertson has been retained by the government of The Virgin Islands to translate the census records of St. Croix from Danish into English. I believe that the records will be digitized and offered to the public. Chris has discussed the names and nationalities found in the census. They are from all over the world. The names and their origins underline the importance of spreading a wide net in African American genealogy research.
Our ancestors' links to the Caribbean are a lot stronger than we may think. Before we look to Africa as the final destination for our ancestry research, we shouldn't dismiss the possibility of the Caribbean as another resource. Queries and discussions on various Afrigeneas boards highlight this fact. Therefore, it’s not a stretch to link an ancestor from North Carolina or Virginia with the Caribbean.
Your research and the St. Croix census, will add another invaluable chapter to the history of Africans in the Americas.
I'm very pleased to know that a Norwegian and a Danish jazz historian are interested in our legacy beyond our musical contributions.
I've enclosed a link to Florida's Palmm Collections' research and presentation of "The United States Virgin Islands History and Culture."
"Publication of Archival, Library & Museum Materials (PALMM) is a cooperative initiative of the public universities of Florida to provide digital access to important source materials for research and scholarship."
I plugged in Denmark and also Norway into its full-text search engine. The results are fascinating. Sorry not so much on Norway.
K Wyer Lane
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