Montpelier, home of America’s fourth president, James Madison, in Orange County, Va

In Support of Montpelier Descendants Committee

In the spirit of truth-telling and inclusive representation, the Middle Passage Ceremonies and Port Markers Project (MPCPMP) supports the Montpelier Descendants Committee (MDC). Montpelier is a model for the inclusion of descendants of the enslaved and an affirmation of their parity to exercise decision-making at many of the iconic U.S. historical sites where ancestors lived in bondage. With the support of staff and others, the national rubric for the interpretation Read More

1526 to 2021 = 495 years

Much attention has been given to the 1619 arrival of captive Africans to the English colony of Virginia, and rightfully so. However, that does not represent the full story of the North American continent’s Middle Passage history. During September 2021, the Middle Passage Ceremonies and Port Markers Project (MPCPMP) will promote and mark 495 years of the mainland’s transatlantic human trade that began in 1526 near Sapelo Sound, Georgia. Professor Read More

August 21st: A Pledge of Remembrance

I pledge to remember and honor those who came before me.  I will cherish their lives, their sacrifices, and the lessons I have learned. I will practice the values transmitted to me from my ancestors and my community to the best of my ability in order to sustain our humanity today and create a better world for future generations. People have traditionally honored ancestors.  Middle Passage Ceremonies and Port Markers Read More

June 2021 Newsletter

On the international level, the United Nations issued a report on reparations. We are doing our part by memorializing Middle Passage African ancestors at the 52 documented U.S. arrival locations for the purpose of promoting truth-telling, justice, and healing.  In June, we added to that number the three U.S. territories with Middle Passage history – San Juan, Puerto Rico, St. Croix and St. Thomas, Virgin Islands – raising the number Read More

Amazing Grace

The hymn Amazing Grace, ironically a standard part of most funeral services for members of the police force, has its origin in global history – an African dirge heard from the bowels of a ship by a captain transporting human cargo during the Middle Passage. When this captain, John Newman, wrote the words, “Was blind but now I see,” he was referring to the fact that he realized that he Read More

Inclusion: From Many, One

Middle Passage Ceremonies and Port Markers Project promotes the inclusion of a portion of this nation’s history – the Middle Passage – that has been omitted from the narrative. We will not engage in any effort that enables or encourages the exclusion of any people who share this history of place, no matter their ethnicity or heritage. It will take radical imagination, rethinking, and work to evolve into an anti-racist America. MPCPMP is one step in the process of reconciling, healing, and redefining the history of place and the people who build community.

MPCPMP 2020 End-of-Year Fundraiser

For this year’s November-December fundraising period, MPCPMP has set a goal of $5000. In spite of the COVID pandemic, the economy, demonstrations, and all the activity surrounding elections, three documented arrival locations have installed historic Middle Passage markers in 2020: Amelia Island, FL (March); Camden, NJ (June); Boston, MA (October). A fourth marker for Pensacola, FL, has been fabricated, with an installation date to be determined. There are now 21 Read More