Curator: people may find their history in slave ship exhibit

May 2, 2021 GMT

HOUMA, La. (AP) — A Black history museum in Louisiana has a new exhibit about one of the last slave ships — one which brought 400 Africans illegally to the United States and sold some of them in south Louisiana.

Margie Scoby, president and curator of the Finding Our Roots African American Museum in Houma, says the exhibit may help visitors learn about their own histories. Some of the people carried by the ship named The Wanderer were sold to plantations in Terrebonne, Lafourche and St. Mary parishes, The Courier reported.

Some of the descendants of those enslaved people already have connected their families’ historical documents to the records at the museum, she said.

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The exhibit, called “Blood, Sweat and Tears,” includes documentation of those known to be enslaved on numerous plantations, pictures of slave owners, and soil collected from plantations in the Houma-Thibodaux area.

Thibodaux City Councilwoman Constance Johnson said she’s working to learn whether any of her ancestors were on “The Wanderer.”

“This museum depicts so much and exposes the beauty we have regardless of the challenges we have faced,” Johnson said.

The museum closed early last year because of COVID-19 restrictions. It began conducting tours and limited activities in September, and held a reopening ceremony April 24.