Where We Live
9:00 am
Tue November 11, 2014

Remembering Connecticut's Role in Slavery and the Holocaust

Anne Farrow is a journalist and the author of “Complicity: How the North Promoted, Prolonged, and Profited From Slavery and most recently, “Logbooks: Connecticut’s Slave Ships and Human Memory”
Anne Farrow

Connecticut played a big role in slavery and the Holocaust...but most of us don't know about it.

First, a powerful New London merchant and ship owner sailed his ships to West Africa and the Caribbean for more than 40 years during the late 18th century to trade in slaves whose labor lined the pockets of his most respected family.

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Dark Connecticut History
7:00 am
Tue August 19, 2014

Elephant Slaughter, African Slavery And America's Pianos

Louis E. Pratt, master ivory cutter for Pratt, Read & Co., shows off eight ivory tusks, April 1, 1955.
Courtesy of Deep River Historical Society

Originally published on Tue August 19, 2014 7:35 am

The illegal trade in ivory from African elephants has tripled in the past 15 years, to the extent that biologists fear for the creatures' future existence.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:24 am
Wed February 19, 2014

Connecticut in the Civil War

Matt Warshauer is a professor of History at Central Connecticut State University
Chion Wolf

Here's a little bit of Civil War history that seems to have started here in Connecticut. It was in this month of February in 1860 that Cassius Clay, a Kentucky planter turned anti-slavery crusader spoke in Hartford not far from where we're doing this show today. He was accompanied by a torch-bearing honor guard in capes and caps. The Hartford Courant called these young men "wide-awakes." 

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:35 am
Fri November 8, 2013

The Nose Tackles Racism, Past and Present

Tracy Wu-Fastenberg is the Director of Development at The Mark Twain House and Museum.
Chion Wolf WNPR

As my friend Alex Beam said today, 12 Years a Slave has a way of taking things that were abstractions and making them real. It's one thing to talk about abolition, another to see the essential need for it. Even a figure like John Brown, says Alex, looks different when you see the true carnage of slavery.

We're talking about this astonishing new Steve McQueen movie today on The Nose and we'll find it pretty easy I predict.

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Here & Now
7:36 am
Mon September 23, 2013

Almost 200 Years Later, Slave Gets Proper Burial

About 60 people gathered at the Connecticut State Capitol to pay respects to an 18th-century Connecticut slave known as Mr. Fortune. (Chion Wolf/WNPR)

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 4:21 pm

Slavery is an accepted part of the history of the American South. But it was also practiced throughout the North.

Around the time of the American Revolution, Connecticut had more than 6,000 slaves, the most in New England.

From the Here & Now Contributors Network, Diane Orson of WNPR brings us the story of an 18th century Connecticut slave whose remains were recently laid to rest, more than 200 years after his death.

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2:54 pm
Sat September 21, 2013

What Did Your Parents Tell You About Race?

Originally published on Sat September 21, 2013 6:48 pm

Earlier this week, a school in Hartford, Conn., made headlines after parents complained about its, uh, novel approach at making America's racial history resonate with seventh graders.

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Where We Live
12:31 pm
Tue February 12, 2013

Portraying Lincoln

Catie Talarski

It’s argued that no one can do as good of a job of portraying President Lincoln on film as Daniel Day-Lewis. 

Lincoln, the movie, is up for 12 Academy Awards. But weeks before the Oscars, Connecticut Congressman Joe Courtney is asking the studio to alter an inaccuracy that puts Connecticut on the wrong side of the slavery debate.

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Where We Live
11:18 am
Tue February 5, 2013

U.S. History Through Our "Tapestry"

(Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

The presidency of Barack Obama has been a milestone in America’s history of race: from a country whose Founding Fathers owned slaves to a black man in the White House.

But while the Obamas are seen as the first African American “first family” - their own racial history is much more complex.

NY Times reporter Rachel Swarns details the complexity of the first lady’s ancestral history in her book, American Tapestry: The Story of the Black, White and Multiracial Ancestors of Michelle Obama.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
3:10 pm
Thu September 27, 2012

Connecticut's Checkered Past In Politics, Suffrage, And War

Flickr Creative Commons, cliff1066

There's an oft-cited quote from John Adams writing in 1808, after his presidency. "Connecticut has always been governed by an aristocracy, more decisively than the empire of Great Britain. Half a dozen, or at most, a dozen families have controlled that country when a colony, as well as since it has been a state." 

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The Colin McEnroe Show
3:17 pm
Tue May 24, 2011

Celebrating Three Famous 'Harriets'

Chion Wolf

***Gwendolyn Quezaire-Presutti will perform as Harriet Tubman Monday, July 11, from 1 to 2 p.m. at John J. Sullivan's in Ansonia.***

Today we're doing an all-Harriet show, featuring Harriet Beecher Stowe, Harriet Tubman and Harriet the Spy.

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