Saturday October 4, 2014 Program Change
Our Meet the Dairy Cow, Chicken Program, and Park's Past tour of the historic house will be offered on October 4, 2014. However, the Wagon Ride will not take place. Please call the park at 301.839.1176, if you have any questions.
A Voice Unheard - A Story of Enslavement
From the late 1600s to the early 1800s tobacco, wheat and other crops helped bring prosperity to the slaveholders that owned property that is now Oxon Cove Park. This prosperity came at huge price—bondage, hard labor, and broken families for the enslaved African Americans. No information about the lives of the enslaved people who lived on the Mount Welby plantation survives in their own words. Their voice is still unheard and their stories untold. The wills, letters, and records of the Debutts family tells part of the story, but only from the slaveholders’ point of view. African Americans named George, Edward, Hamilton, Minta, Patsy, and Matilda, among others, lived in bondage on the land. Most able-bodied bondspeople—men, women, and older children—worked in the fields. One or two probably worked as cooks or servants in the main house. Enslaved African Americans considered property by law, and were far the most valuable property after the land itself. A few enslaved people were freed by their owners, usually after years of forced service. Along with their labor, African Americans— free and enslaved—brought their language, skills, food, music, stories, and history to the property, Maryland and the nation.
Did You Know?
In the early 1800's at least half of the population of Prince George's County, Maryland, was enslaved African Americans. Oxon Hill Farm is located in Prince George's County and seventeen enslaved people lived on the property in the 1800s.