18th-century slave quarters uncovered at a Jesuit plantation in Maryland

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18th-century slave quarters unearthed on a Jesuit plantation in Maryland, revealing remains of shacks, tobacco pipes, coins and other belongings

  • Newtown State Park in Maryland was the site of an 18th century plantation
  • Experts have discovered remains of shacks that housed slaves in the 1700s
  • The site also revealed tobacco pipes, coins and other items belonging to slaves
  • Earlier documents show slaves were sold in 1838 to pay off college debt










Archaeologists have discovered the remains of 300-year-old slave quarters in Newtown Neck State Park, Maryland, which was the site of an 18th-century Jesuit plantation.

The team, along with the Maryland State Highway Administration Department of Transportation (MDOT SHA), identified cabin structures, as well as broken clay tobacco pipes, ceramic mugs, and others. signs of those who were enslaved on the plantation.

The artefacts are “a stone’s throw away” from an 18th century brick mansion that was once occupied by Jesuit missionaries and the earliest records mention the sale of 272 area slaves in 1838, including those who lived in Newtown Manor .

The team, along with the Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration (MDOT SHA), identified cabin structures built underground (pictured)

The money raised by selling these slaves, which amounts to around $ 3.3 million in today’s dollars, was organized by the presidents of Georgetown University and used to pay off part of the debt of college.

Dr Julie Schablitsky, MDOT SHA’s chief archaeologist, said: “The Jesuits were prolific in their record keeping, but very few survived thanks to the African-American slaves who worked the fields and served the Catholic Church.”

“If there was ever a place in Maryland that tells the story of diverse cultures converging to find religious freedom in an environment of conflict, sacrifice and survival, it is here.”

Archaeologists discovered that the slave quarters were built underground, but were able to identify the huts because the surrounding soil had not yet eroded, CNN reports.

Tobacco pipes (pictured) were also found as the team investigated the site

Tobacco pipes (pictured) were also found as the team investigated the site

The artefacts can be found

The artefacts can be found “a stone’s throw away” from an 18th century brick mansion that was once occupied by Jesuit missionaries

A coin was also found at the site.  Experts on the excavation were joined by the deceased of some of those sold by Georgetown University in 1838

A coin was also found at the site. Experts on the excavation were joined by the deceased of some of those sold by Georgetown University in 1838

“Although enslaved Africans arrived in the area in 1634, none of their homes have been found to date,” Schablitsky said. Planet alone. We believe this may be the oldest slave quarter site found in Maryland

Experts were joined by the deceased of some of those sold by Georgetown University in 1838, a man named Dante Eubanks, who resides in Leonardtown, traced his family back to this plantation.

“Being able to stand in the exact spot where my ancestors lived and endured is a powerful experience,” Eubanks said.

“We need to remember these stories, they are important to our history and our healing.”

The slaves sold in 1838 were forced onto three different ships bound for Louisiana.

Documents show dozens of children, including infants as young as two months old, were also loaded onto the ships.

During this period, the Catholic Church did not consider the detention of slaves to be immoral, The New York Times reports.

The first documentation notes the sale of 272 slaves from the area in 1838 - including those who lived in Newtown Manor

The first documentation notes the sale of 272 slaves from the area in 1838 – including those who lived in Newtown Manor

Ceramic mugs and other signs of those who were enslaved on the plantation.  The soil around the area had not yet eroded, allows archaeologists to uncover the artifacts in the ground

Ceramic mugs and other signs of those who were enslaved on the plantation. The soil around the area had not yet eroded, allows archaeologists to uncover the artifacts in the ground

Archaeologists have discovered the remains of 300-year-old slave quarters in Newtown Neck State Park, Maryland, which was the site of an 18th-century Jesuit plantation.

Archaeologists have discovered the remains of 300-year-old slave quarters in Newtown Neck State Park, Maryland, which was the site of an 18th-century Jesuit plantation.

Although the Jesuits had already sold slaves, the motion to sell almost all of them confused the priests of the church – they feared the new owners would allow the slaves to practice their faith.

Reverend Jan Roothaan, who headed the International Jesuit Organization from Rome and was initially reluctant to allow the sale, wrote a statement in the 1800s: “It would be better to suffer financial disaster than to suffer the loss of our souls with it. the sale of slaves. ‘


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