Breaking ground, breaking silence : the story of New York's African burial ground /

Describes the discovery and study of the African burial site found in Manhattan in 1991, while excavating for a new building, and what it reveals about the lives of black people in Colonial times.

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Main Author: Hansen, Joyce.
Other Authors: McGowan, Gary.
Format: Book
Published:New York : Henry Holt, 1998.
Edition:1st ed.
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Review by Kirkus Book Review

From Hansen (Between Two Fires, 1993, etc.) and McGowan, a moving and enriching story of the discovery of an African burial ground located in lower Manhattan. Although 18th-century maps of New York City show an area marked ``Negroes Burying Ground,'' the land had been covered over by buildings for two centuries. In 1991, the area was once again excavated to build ``a new thirty-four-story federal office building,'' but this time, a group of archaeologists hired by the US government were able to dig and conduct research. Their discoveries form the basis of this engrossing account. The painstaking methods of archaeologists, and their detective work, reveal much about the lives of Africans in colonial times. Hansen and McGowan recount that ``it is as though people who have been written out of history have found a way to tell us about themselves through the objects buried with them,'' and that ``a people who had no voice when they were living, and who had left no written records, would at last have their stories told.'' (b&w photos and illustrations, maps, notes, bibliography) (Nonfiction. 10-14)

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