The president of the Mayme A. Clayton Library & Museum in Culver City, California has discovered an unusual book in his late mother’s extraordinary collection of African American artifacts.
The small, cloth-bound book, titled Slave Songs of the United States, has a publication date of 1867 and contains a collection of 136 plantation songs.
Could this be the first book of African American spirituals ever published?
History Detectives explores the coded messages and the melodies that laid the foundation of modern blues, gospel and protest songs of future generations.
- Related Investigation Face Jug What does this ceramic face reveal about the Middle Passage and a captive people’s search for identity?
- Related Investigation Drug Smuggling Doll What does this doll reveal about disease, death and daring during the Civil War?
- Also with Wes Cowan U.S.S Indianapolis Are these WWII souvenirs remnants from one of Japan’s famous kamikaze attacks?
- Also with Wes Cowan McKinley Casket Flag Did this flag once drape the casket of President William McKinley?
- Also with Wes Cowan Doc Holliday's Watch Was this watch a gift from the fearless frontier lawman Wyatt Earp to the gambler Doc Holliday?
- Also in this episode Josh White Guitar What role did this guitar play in the transformation of the music industry in the 1960's?
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