The Emancipation Memorial, also known as the Freedman's Memorial or the Emancipation Group is a monument in Lincoln Park in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Washington, D.C. It was sometimes referred to as the ""Lincoln Memorial"" before the more prominent so-named memorial was dedicated in 1922.

ON THE NATIONAL STAGE, in the center of political power, a monument to “freedom” finally emerged. This was the Freedmen’s Memorial to Abra- ham Lincoln, a project begun immediately after Lincoln’s death and com- pleted finally in 1876—neatly spanning the whole era of Reconstruction. Financed entirely by contributions from free blacks, the monument cam- paign was the most conspicuous attempt in public sculpture to capture the spirit of Reconstruction, to translate into the sculptural language of the human body principles of freedom that remained abstract and barely imaginable. While the nation attempted to redefine itself as a free inter- racial society, the Freedmen’s Memorial—first on its own, then in concert with other national monument projects—sought to make the interracial nation a palpable reality in public space. - Kirk Savage, Standing Soldiers, Kneeling Slaves: Race, War, and Monument in Nineteenth-Century America (1997), ch. 4, p1

0476 BC-12-01 00:00:00

The Roman Empire falls

marking the beginning of the Middle Ages

0500 BC-12-01 00:00:00

Nok culture emerges in what is now Nigeria

Iron use, in smelting and forging tools, appears in Nok culture by at least 550 BC and possibly a few centuries earlier

0661-12-01 00:00:00

Islam begins to spread

along trade routes in North and West Africa.

0750-12-01 00:00:00

The Ghana Empire

A powerful African kingdom, controls the trade of precious salt and gold across the Sahara Desert

1230-12-01 00:00:00

Kingdom of Mali

The wealthy kingdom flourishes with over 400 cities and 20 million people. Mansa Musa is the emperor of the Mali empire in the 1300s and one of the richest people in history. Under Musa’s leadership, Mali expands and becomes one of the largest gold producers in the world.

1300-12-01 00:00:00

The European Renaissance begins

in Florence, Italy, marking a period of cultural, political, and artistic flourishing inspired by interest in ancient Roman and Greek culture.

1400-12-01 00:00:00

The city of Timbuktu

Located in the Sahara Desert, Timbuktu is one of the largest cities in the world and thrives as a commercial, religious, intellectual, and cultural center. In 1450 about 100,000 people live in Timbuktu; 25,000 of them scholars. Manuscripts like these discuss art, medicine, philosophy, and science

1441-12-01 00:00:00

Seeds of Slavery

Portuguese human traffickers kidnap Africans with the intention to enslave them, effectively marking the beginning of the Atlantic slave trade.

1600-12-01 00:00:00


Maafa, the Kiswahili word meaning “great disaster” or “great tragedy,” denotes the period of the transatlantic slave trade. Since 1989, scholars of African and African diasporic studies have used the term Maafa to describe this period of exploitation and oppression. The transatlantic slave trade marks an unequaled period of human trauma. Human traffickers kidnapped millions of Africans and forced them onto cargo ships bound for South America, North America, the West Indies, and Europe. More people were displaced by the Maafa than any other event in human history.

1602-12-01 00:00:00

The Dutch East India Company

The Dutch East India Company is believed to be the largest company in recorded history. For two hundred years, it brought horrendous suffering for an endless number of people through colonial oppression, exploitation, and corruption in attempts to maintain a monopoly over the spice market and trade in Asia.


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