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Southern Slavery Panoramas


Slavery in North America existed officially from 1640, when the first runaway indentured servant in Virginia was sentenced to servitude for life, until the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863. Southern planters exploited slave knowledge and labor to create southern wealth and opulence.

The panoramas below were taken at the reconstructed eighteenth century slave quarters of the Carter's Grove Plantation, near Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia, and at the national monument commemorating the birthplace of the African-American scientist Booker T. Washington, just southeast of Roanoke, Virginia. As you view the panoramas, use the linked quotations and accompanying photographs to interpret the contrasting lives of slaves and plantation owners in pre-Civil War America.

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Carter's Grove Slave Quarters Panorama Booker T. Washington Panorama
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Credits: Photographs by Carolyn Merchant; panorama assembly and web page by Rob Weinberg.