The regret expressed by several top universities in recent years for their connection to slavery has led to a number of institutions probing to uncover how deeply linked they were to the slave enterprise.
Schools like Harvard and Brown have acknowledged that they benefitted from slavery. Many others have acknowledged buying or renting out slaves, using slave labor for construction and accepting funds for endowed chairs or start-up seed money from wealthy merchants who were profiting from the slave trade.
These revelations and a growing body of research suggest that prior to the Civil War, universities with no ties to slavery were the exception and not the norm. The academia connection to slavery has gained more attention recently with the publication of Ebony and Ivy: Race, Slavery and the Troubled History of America’s Universities, by Dr. Craig Steven Wilder, a professor of history at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. <Read more.>