The Background for Our Future: Locating The Black Archives in the Netherlands in Black Atlantic Traditions of Archival Activism
Black Archives, Netherlands
Laura Visser-Maessen, ‘“The Background for Our Future”: Locating The Black Archives in the Netherlands in Black Atlantic Traditions of Archival Activism’, The New Americanist, 1:4 (Summer 2020)
The use of wills in community formation by former slaves in Suriname, 1750–1775
Slavery, Manumission, Wills, Community Formation, Suriname
This article investigates how the manumitted in Suriname used wills and testaments to construct their social worlds. Wills enabled the manumitted to transmit their possessions and instructed those who survived them how to care for each other.
Historians have made different assessments of the community of freedmen in Suriname, either seeing an anti-slavery solidarity among them or a vicious use of the institution of slavery even with regard to close kin.
By closely reading the entire corpus of wills drawn up by manumitted people between 1750 and 1775, this article traces what these people tried to dispose of, how they did so and the effects of their wills.