"W.E.B. Du Bois outlined the options you have when you are enslaved, which are essentially revolt or submission. But once you have emancipation, then you have another option, and that is what he called "self-realization," or "self-development."...You don't have to respond to your oppressor; you can go down your own path."

As we begin Black History Month, here’s a letter from 1865 making the rounds. In it, Jourdan Anderson, a former slave, responds to his former master Colonel P.H. Anderson, who had written to invite him back to the plantation.

Basement, Four bbls of hard liquorBarrels of the Vann House basement.

For Black History Month: a MacArthur "genius" who's unearthing an especially painful chapter of the American experience — the intersecting history of African-Americans and Native Americans, and the little-known narratives that Cherokee landowners held black slaves. Even with history this difficult, Tiya Miles shows us the possibility of stretching the canvas of the past wide enough to hold both hard truths and healing.


If our show site were a magazine, this would be the pull quote.

The late Joe Carter tells the back story of a well-known spiritual.