"Africa Slavery." Africa Slavery. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Apr. 2013. <http://www.africanculturalcenter.org/4_5slavery.html>.
Africans first brought to America
At first the Europeans went to Africa to trade for gold, other metals, feathers, and ivory tusks. Soon it was discovered that many of the African Rulers would also sell their slaves who were taken to distant places and traded for other supplies. When colonies were settled in the Americas across the Atlantic Ocean they established trade routes with them as well. In 1532 AD, the first slave was taken directly from Africa to the Americas
Then the African slaves were packed into big sailing ships. The ships took them to the Colonies of America and to the island nations of the Caribbean. They were traded for tobacco, cotton, sugar, and molasses. Then these items were taken to Europe and traded for the guns.
Through this system, called the Triangle Trade Route, perhaps 10–12 million people were sold into slavery. It lasted for three hundred years until many countries made it illegal to sell people. In the United States the country had to fight the Civil War (1860–1865 AD) for the slave trade to finally stop.To this day, because of the slave trade, you find millions of men and women of African decent all over North and South America.
"Slavery in America." History.com. A&E Television Networks, n.d. Web. 18 Apr. 2013. <http://www.history.com/topics/slavery>.
Slavery in America began when the first African slaves were brought to the North American colony of Jamestown, Virginia, in 1619, to aid in the production of such lucrative crops as tobacco. Slavery was practiced throughout the American colonies in the 17th and 18th centuries, and African-American slaves helped build the economic foundations of the new nation.
Washington, Jesse. "Want More US News? Join Us on Facebook | Follow Us on Twitter." Msnbc.com. NBC NEWS, 5 Feb. 2012. Web. 18 Apr. 2013. <http://www.nbcnews.com/id/46264191/ns/us_news-life/t/some-blacks-insist-im-not-african-american/>.
The labels used to describe Americans of African descent mark the movement of a people from the slave house to the White House.
"I prefer to be called black," said Shawn Smith, an accountant from Houston. "How I really feel is, I'm American." parents are from Mississippi and North Carolina. "I can't recall any of them telling me anything about Africa. They told me a whole lot about where they grew up in Macomb County and Shelby, N.C."
In Latin, a forerunner of the English language, the color black is "niger." In 1619, the first African captives in America were described as "negars," which became the epithet still used by some today.
The Spanish word "negro" means black. That was the label applied by white Americans for centuries.
The word black also was given many pejorative connotations — a black mood, a blackened reputation, a black heart. "Colored" seemed better, until the civil rights movement insisted on Negro, with a capital N.
Then, in the 1960s, "black" came back — as an expression of pride, a strategy to defy oppression.
Afro-American was briefly in vogue in the 1970s, and lingers today in the names of some newspapers and university departments. But it was soon overshadowed by African-American, which first sprouted among the black intelligentsia.
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The Rev. Jesse Jackson is widely credited with taking African-American mainstream in 1988, before his second presidential run.
It also has historical value, said Irv Randolph, managing editor of the Philadelphia Tribune, a black newspaper that uses both terms: "It's a historical fact that we are people of African descent."
"African-American embraces where we came from and where we are now," he said. "We are Americans, no doubt about that. But to deny where we came from doesn't make any sense to me."
Today, 24 years