The proud consciousness of duty well done…

“British gold and promises of personal freedom served as futile incentives among the Negroes of the American Navy; for them, the proud consciousness of duty well done served as a constant monitor and nerved their strong black arms when thundering shot and shell menaced the future of the country; and, although African slavery was still a recognized legal institution and constituted the basic fabric of the great food productive industry of the nation, it was the Negro’s trusted devotion to duty whichever guided him in the nation’s darkest hours of peril and menace.”

Mathematician Kelly Miller, a premier black intellectual at the turn of the 20th-century, penned these words in 1919 to describe the patriotism of free and enslaved black Sailors during the Revolutionary War. Despite slavery and British offers of freedom, thousands of black patriots served on American vessels during the American Revolution. https://cutt.ly/MuUwtOC