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Centuries of Building Empires Through Racial Divide

Ida B. Wells Center on American Exceptionalism and Restorative Justice (The Wells Center) has built a unique, interactive source architecture to discover, to engage, to refresh and to reframe America’s historiography regarding slavery. American slave history depicts black Englishmen and Africans captured, shackled, and beaten into submission by white colonists to serve at the behest of slave masters in colonial America. The legality of this treatment and ownership of blacks as property by America’s founding generation is claimed to be rooted in the historical laws and statutes of colonial America.

However, evidence found in archival fragments, historical records, and through academic research suggests that the legislative and judicial acts of Great Britain had voided and nullified all colonial statutes and laws 17-years before America won its independence in 1783 per the Definitive Treaty of Peace; therefore making the legality of slave ownership false.

If this evidence is true, then the status of all enslaved blacks would have returned to “status quo ante” signifying that they were either free Englishmen or indentured servants based on English law enacted per the Divine Right of Kings, Magna Carta of 1215, A Statute for those who are born in Parts beyond Sea in 1350, Liberty of Subject in 1354, General Charter of Emancipation in 1381, Confirmation of Liberties in 1405, Laborers, Servants of Husbandry and Apprentices Act in 1563, English Bill of Rights in 1689, American Colonies Act 1766 commonly known as the Declaratory Act of 1766 (6 Geo 3 c 12), Court of the King’s Bench ruling in James Somerset v. Charles Stewart (1772) and Lord Dunmore Proclamation of Emancipation in November 1775.

We conclude that before the American Revolution history confirms that colonial slavery was illegal and as black colonials were British citizens under the rule of English law… they were not excluded from the Declaration of Independence and should have been “set at liberty” per the Definitive Treaty of Peace in 1783. These conclusions have provocative implications upon issues like U. S. constitutionalism, American exceptionalism, reparations and restorative justice. Yet there’s much more work to do. With the help of scholars, educators, and other thought leaders, Ida B. Wells Center on American Exceptionalism and Restorative Justice endeavors to reframe America’s historiography regarding the life long enslavement of blacks in America.

Historical Enslavement

Centuries of Building Empires through Racial Divide

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