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Freedom for hire

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Abstract:
During the early 1700s and into the early 1800s in Louisiana, a unique community of free black people created a fluid political and cultural identity within New Orleans. Surrounded by plantation slavery, free black people living in this important urban port city accumulated a degree of wealth, property, and agency that free and enslaved people of color did not have access to in other areas of the South. Though this community faced many obstacles and limitations due to their precarious place within a hostile and rigid racial system, free black people, as individuals and as a community, used the often confusing and fluid nature of their racial identity to bolster their agency and place in New Orleans. One such way free black people accomplished this was through the extensive practice of apprenticeship, a labor practice that allowed young people to learn a skill from an artisan, who in exchange for their training, used the free or low wage labor from their apprentice. Using over four hundred contracts between free children of color, local artisans, and a sponsor, this research explores how apprenticeship was in part a formal educational opportunity for black youth. The role that family members, especially black mothers and white fathers, played in acquiring and sponsoring apprenticeships for their children attests to the importance of education and establishing relationships with local artisans and business owners in New Orleans. Using the data collected from these documents, as well as supporting public records, this research reveals the complex and interconnected ways that the free community navigated their material and cultural environment to survive, and often thrive, in the face of increased racial hostility and threats to free black agency in the decades leading up to the Civil War.
Title: Freedom for hire: free black apprenticeship in New Orleans.
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Name(s): Crain, Maggie Eleanor, author.
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Bibliography
Text-txt
Academic Theses.
Academic Theses.
Electronic Thesis Or Dissertation.
Issuance: monographic
Date Created: 2021
Other Date: 2021.
Publisher: University of West Florida,
Place of Publication: [Pensacola, Florida] :
Physical Form: electronic resource
Extent: 1 online resource (viii, 115 leaves : illustrations)
Language(s): eng
Abstract: During the early 1700s and into the early 1800s in Louisiana, a unique community of free black people created a fluid political and cultural identity within New Orleans. Surrounded by plantation slavery, free black people living in this important urban port city accumulated a degree of wealth, property, and agency that free and enslaved people of color did not have access to in other areas of the South. Though this community faced many obstacles and limitations due to their precarious place within a hostile and rigid racial system, free black people, as individuals and as a community, used the often confusing and fluid nature of their racial identity to bolster their agency and place in New Orleans. One such way free black people accomplished this was through the extensive practice of apprenticeship, a labor practice that allowed young people to learn a skill from an artisan, who in exchange for their training, used the free or low wage labor from their apprentice. Using over four hundred contracts between free children of color, local artisans, and a sponsor, this research explores how apprenticeship was in part a formal educational opportunity for black youth. The role that family members, especially black mothers and white fathers, played in acquiring and sponsoring apprenticeships for their children attests to the importance of education and establishing relationships with local artisans and business owners in New Orleans. Using the data collected from these documents, as well as supporting public records, this research reveals the complex and interconnected ways that the free community navigated their material and cultural environment to survive, and often thrive, in the face of increased racial hostility and threats to free black agency in the decades leading up to the Civil War.
Identifier: 1294639545 (oclc), WFE0000775 (IID)
Note(s): by Maggie Eleanor Crain.
Department of History, College of Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities
Thesis (M.A.) University of West Florida 2021
Includes bibliographical references.
Also available in print.
Subject(s): University of West Florida
University of West Florida.
Library Classification: LD1807.F62k 2021 C73
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/uwf/fd/WFE00007775
Use and Reproduction: http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC-EDU/1.0/
Host Institution: UWF
Other Format: Freedom for hire. (Print version:)
(OCoLC)1294639411

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