I am a proud descendant of slaves. I understand why our parents and grandparents never speak about the stories that were (or were not) passed down from generation to generation. They feel like there is a stigma associated with our ancestry, but I find pride in the stigma.

For my ancestors to endure the level of brutality that they did speaks to an iron will that few others have. For them to survive the middle passage and to survive the institution of slavery shows physical and mental strength that cannot be surpassed by humanity. The fact that their DNA runs through my veins tells me that I’m stronger than I think I am. They lived, they survived, and I am here as a result of their living.

I wish that I knew their names and stories. However, I’ve made it a life long goal of mine to learn about who these people were.