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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:America's African Colonization Movement: Implications for New Jersey and Liberia
Author:Wonkeryor, Edward L.
Periodical:Liberian Studies Journal
Geographic terms:Liberia
United States
Subjects:American Colonization Society
History and Exploration
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Ethnic and Race Relations
Abstract:In December 1816, the American Colonization Society (ACS) was founded. Its aim was to colonize America's free blacks in Africa. The New Jersey Colonization Society (NJCS), the state auxiliary of the national organization, was founded the same winter. Many European Americans wanted to rid America of black people, but the viability of slavery consistently rendered that dream impossible. Nevertheless, the idea of a nation purged of its black inhabitants appeared throughout the 19th century. New Jerseyans were significantly represented among the leadership of the ACS and played an active role in the colonization efforts. One of the members of the NJCS, R.F. Stockton, argued that an inequality in relationship existed in America between whites and blacks, and that it would be good for freed blacks to return to African and proselytize Christianity instead of fighting to remain in the bondage of slavery in the US. However, opposition to the ACS colonization was the overwhelming position among New Jersey African Americans. The US 1820 census reported the free African American population of New Jersey as 6.2 percent of the state's African American population, by 1830 it had increased to 90 percent. This increase multiplied the expatriation efforts of the ACS, which intensified racism. In Liberia, from its foundation to the present, leaders have suppressed and denied fundamental basic rights and economic empowerment to the indigenous Liberian population, and separated the Americo-Liberian and indigenous communities. Bibliogr. [ASC Leiden abstract]