Sunday, May 20, 2012

Interview: George Tyson

On May 18, 2012 we had our first interview with the historian George Tyson. He has been helping me research the previous owners of our building.  I find it interesting that many of them were women. However, it's really challenging wrapping my head around 18th century Danish West Indian life: the owning of another person; how to purchase yourself out of slavery?; and how to then survive on your own? Especially as a woman. What are your assets? Who do you align yourself with? And most importantly: What did this house mean to a formerly enslaved woman? Was it another means of income? Was it a refuge? An asset? We have owning property so associated with the concept of the "American Dream", a home as wealth builder, a form of security. What did it mean to them?

La Vaughn Belle & George Tyson reviewing the history of previous owners at 18B East St.

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