". . . But the past does not exist independently from the present. Indeed, the past is only past because there is a present, just as I can point to something over there only because I am here. But nothing is inherently over there or here. In that sense, the past has no content. The past -- or more accurately, pastness -- is a position. Thus, in no way can we identify the past as past." p. 15

". . . But we may want to keep in mind that deeds and words are not as distinguishable as often we presume. History does not belong only to its narrators, professional or amateur. While some of us debate what history is or was, others take it into their own hands." p. 153

Silencing the Past: Power and the Production of History (1995) by Michel-Rolph Trouillot

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Honk County - Day After Christmas

It is storming. Snow and wind.

Fascinating information emerges when browsing through the House's Leo Lemay Library donation's Collected Letters and Papers of George Washington, such as how deeply and tightly established already by 1769 the buying and selling of personal property slaves was the basis of each slaveholder's personal economy, particularly for their constant need of personal debt relief.

By the end of the 17th century it was all there, or rather here, in the Upper South, the Chesapeake region. So fortunate for the elite slaveholders there was the constant expansion of new land settlements to the south and the west demanding healthy slaves to work to death clearing the wilderness for the enrichment of their owners.

There's this as well: George Washington’s descriptions of his runaway slaves, sent to gazettes and slave catchers. The descriptions are lengthy, filled with multiple and specific detail of each individual, including their speech patterns – at least three of the four run-aways are clearly Africans, rather than born in the Chesapeake.
Tell me again that African Americans didn't build this country.

O, yeah, Christmas! It was wonderful. I have now the newest edition of Photoshop. The downside is I have to learn to use it. It's not like the older editions I've had before. I really do need to learn it all over again.  Time sink, time I could use profitably elsewhere, methinks.

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