Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Virtual Lunch and Learn

June 9 @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Maryland has a long and historic relationship with West Africa. Maryland society, its landscape, its peoples, and its institutions, were all deeply shaped by generations of West Africans brought to these shores beginning in the seventeenth century. Less well known is that thousands of Black Marylanders also returned to West Africa in the nineteenth century and left an important imprint on the other side of the Atlantic.

Professor Herbert Brewer of Morgan State University will discuss this process of ‘reversing the sail,’ and the historical significance of the diaspora of Black Marylanders in West Africa during the nineteenth century. A few questions to ponder: Who left? Which parts of Maryland did they come from? Why did they leave? What happened when they got to West Africa? What is their legacy? What is the relevance of this particular piece of history to the various debates we are having in the United States today about race and history?

Professor Herbert Brewer is an intellectual and cultural historian of eighteenth and nineteenth century African American life and culture. His research has focused on the African American Diaspora in the Atlantic World. He is currently writing a biography of the Virginia-born Joseph Jenkins Roberts, Liberia’s first president. He was a teacher in the Washington DC Public Schools and once served as the Administrator of the University of Maryland at College Park’s Miller Center for Historical Studies. He has taught history at the University of Maryland at College Park, the University of Maryland at Baltimore County, and at Morgan State University in Baltimore, where he currently serves as an Assistant Professor of History and Coordinator of the African American and African Diaspora Studies Program. Dr. Brewer holds a PhD from the University of Maryland at College Park, and was the recipient of the 2017-2018 Mellon Fellowship for the Study of Slavery at Georgetown University in Washington DC. His scholarship has appeared in a variety of publications and he is a co-author of the Maryland State Archives’ Guide to the History of Slavery in Maryland.

We hope you can join us online.


June 9
1:00 pm - 2:00 pm


Maryland State Archives