Princeton & Slavery Project Launched with Princeton University Humanities Council Support
The Princeton & Slavery Project developed from a small undergraduate research seminar supported by a Humanities Council David A. Gardner ’69 Magic Grant. First taught in the spring of 2013 by Professor of History Martha A. Sandweiss, with assistance from University Archivist Dan Linke and his staff, the class sought evidence that might clarify whether Princeton University benefited from enslaved labor or money derived from slave labor. Students also sought to understand whether early college faculty and staff owned slaves, whether students brought slaves to campus, and how the larger culture of slavery in America shaped campus conversations and life.
With four years of Humanities Council funding for archival research by postdoctoral fellows, the project became far more ambitious in scale and scope. From 2013-2015, postdoctoral fellow Craig Hollander worked with students and delved into University and regional archives, uncovering key documents. From 2015-2017, postdoctoral fellow Joseph Yannielli conducted additional research and spearheaded the work for the website, developed in collaboration with the Center for Digital Humanities. Graduate student Isabela Morales joined the team as a research assistant in 2013-2016 and editor and project manager in 2017.