A Companion to American Women's History by Nancy A. Hewitt

By Nancy A. Hewitt

This choice of twenty-four unique essays by means of top students in American women's heritage highlights the latest very important scholarship at the key debates and destiny instructions of this well known and modern field.

• Covers the breadth of yankee Women's background, together with the colonial relations, marriage, healthiness, sexuality, schooling, immigration, paintings, purchaser tradition, and feminism.
• Surveys and evaluates the simplest scholarship on each vital period and subject.
• contains increased bibliography of titles to steer extra study.

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In modern accounts the rite is deeply laden with traditional imagery that imparts a longstanding connection between girls, their mothers, grandmothers, 28 JENNIFER L. MORGAN and ancestors. Once these women found themselves in American slave societies, slaveowners wrenched this most essential site of commonality between mothers and daughters from them. Enslaved mothers would be forced to devise new ritual spaces as substitutes. Motherhood was a social role caremy prepared for in Africa, as elsewhere.

To pick out. ten or twenty of the choicest young healthy men and women slaves and to send them down to you. . and to receive from you in return as many 22 JENNIFER L. MORGAN young healthy Gold Coast Negroes as they may have occasion for at Gambia” (Letterbook to Cape Coast Castle, July 1731). Like those on board ships awaiting departure, women at slave forts were in the midst of a process of understanding the new terms of their identity. The encounter between far-flung ethnic groups that characterized the experience of enslavement throughout the Americas began on the West African coast.

MORGAN Slave Ships and Forts 0 N February 12, 1678, English slave traders loaded three recently purchased women and the same number of men on the Arthur, a slave ship anchored in the Cdabar River, at the area known as the Bight of Biafra, West Africa. The ship’s factor, George Hingston, paid the “kinge of New Cdabarr” thirty copper bars for each woman; for each man he paid thirty-six. At most embarkation points, women cost less than men did. The exception was Senegambia, the “only known region where Europeans paid equal prices for males and females” (Geggus 1989: 41).

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