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The Diseased Ship: New England Sea Captains and the Slave Trade

July 15, 2021 @ 7:00 pm

A Maine’s First Ship Live Zoom Presentation

This dramatic story features a prominent Yankee sea captain, a tragedy on the high seas, a viral outbreak, a major political cover up, and a conspiracy of silence that has lasted two centuries surrounding New England’s involvement in the slave trade. Following these historical threads into the present day allows us to consider the ways in which our region’s repressed history of complicity with the business of slavery relates to our current national conversations about race, privilege, identity, and access to the “American Dream.”

Meadow Dibble is a Visiting Scholar at Brown University’s Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice. Originally from Cape Cod, Meadow lived for six years on Senegal’s Cape Verde peninsula prior to pursuing her graduate studies.  She received her Ph.D. from Brown’s Department of French with a focus on Postcolonial Studies and taught Francophone African literature at Colby College form 2005-08.  In 2018, following a brutal awakening to the reality of her hometown’s deep investment in the business of slavery, she launched Atlantic Black Box, a public history initiative devoted to researching and reckoning with New England’s role in the slave trade.

A World in Your Library program, sponsored by Maine Humanities Council in partnership with the Margaret Chase Smith Foundation, Maine’s First Ship, and Phippsburg Historical Society.  World in Your Library is a speaker program of the Maine Humanities Council focused on current events and relevant issues, both local and international. Offered free to Maine organizations, it gives communities access to experts and opportunities to explore complex topics, gain insight, and broaden perspectives.

Registration required for Zoom or in-person attendance:


July 15, 2021
7:00 pm