Historian Jared Ross Hardesty focuses on 17th century New England, when enslaved people—both indigenous peoples and kidnapped Africans—comprised about 4 percent of the population. He shares the individual stories of enslaved people, bringing their experiences to life. He also explores the importance of slavery to the colonization of the region and to agriculture and industry, New England’s deep connections to Caribbean plantation societies, and the significance of emancipation movements in the era of the American Revolution.
About the event site
In the eighteenth century, the Royall House and Slave Quarters was home to the largest slaveholding family in Massachusetts and the enslaved Africans who made their lavish way of life possible. Today, the Royall House and Slave Quarters is a museum whose architecture, household items, archaeological artifacts, and programs bear witness to intertwined stories of wealth and bondage, set against the backdrop of America’s quest for independence.
BIO: Jared Ross Hardesty
Jared Ross Hardesty is associate professor of history at Western Washington University and a scholar of colonial America, the Atlantic world, and the histories of labor and slavery. He is the author of Unfreedom: Slavery and Dependence in Eighteenth-Century Boston (New York: NYU Press, 2016), which explores the relationship between slavery and other forms of dependence in eighteenth-century Boston, and Black Lives, Native Lands, White Worlds: A History of Slavery in New England (Amherst & Boston: Bright Leaf, 2019).