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Voices of the Civil War Episode 0002 Bannekers Letter

In Voices of the Civil War, Episode 2, Banneker's Letter, we commend African Americans who fought back against prejudice and racism long before the Civil War, with a focus on Benjamin Banneker. In 1791, Banneker confronted, Secretary of State, Thomas Jefferson about his conflicting views of slavery. He challenged Jefferson’s perception of African Americans by offering himself as a role model of intelligence, wit and strength.

Image Credit: Collection of the Banneker-Douglass Museum,

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© 2012 Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. All rights reserved. 315 East Warren Avenue, Detroit, MI 48201 | (313) 494-5800 |

This program was funded by the U.S. Department of Education Underground Railroad Educational and Cultural Program.