May 14, 2015
Contact: David J. Goldstein
Thursday night, May 14, Drs. Steve Lubkeman, George Washington University, and Paul Gardullo, National Museum of African American History and Culture, will present to the public the first phase of a potential long term project examining wrecks associated with the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade off St. Croix. Accompanied by colleagues from the Southeastern Archaeological Center and Submerged Resource Group of the National Park Service, this project will last two weeks and hopes to locate historic wrecks in protected waters. The goal is to better understand the physical remains and social history of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade through locating documented vessel remains associated with particular journeys when the trade was active. A second arm of this project hopes to engage the public in helping to protect, record, and examine these wrecks as their final resting places become known and documented.
The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade ran to/from St. Croix under the Danish Crown from 1733-1803, with many other nations participating in this trade during this time.
The African Slave Wrecks Project was started by Dr. Steve Lubkeman 20+ years ago, and has been active in several African countries, including Mozambique and South Africa. The project partners with the National Black SCUBA Divers Association to train local youth to help in the care and recording of their national heritage. Recently, this program was deployed at Biscayne National Park in Florida, where no wrecks associated with Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade were recovered. We hope that during this first phase of the project at the St. Croix National Parks will bring to light some of our unknown remains.
The lecture will be held from 5:30-6:30 PM in the Danish Guinea West India Company Warehouse/ Slave Market Building. The Christiansted National Historic Site parking lot will be 'free' and open for this event until 7 PM.
Please note that a meeting of 'The Friends of the National Parks of St. Croix' will meet from 4:30-5:30 PM just before the lecture in the same location.