The Story of Virginia: The Arrival of the First Africans

Time Period
16,000 BCE to 1622 CE
Media Type
Black History
Civil Rights
Politics & Government
Ric Murphy

In this lecture, historian and author Ric Murphy tells the fascinating story of the arrival of the first Africans in Virginia in 1619. 

Based on his book, "Arrival of the First Africans in Virginia," Murphy discusses how in 1619, a group of thirty-two African men, women, and children arrived on the shores of Virginia. He explores how and why they had been kidnapped in the royal city of Kabasa, Angola, and forced aboard the Spanish slave ship San Juan Bautista. He discusses how the ship was attacked by privateers and how the captives were taken by the English to their New World colony in Virginia. He also shares how this group of Angolans were shrouded in controversy because of colonialism, treason, piracy, kidnapping, enslavement, and English law, and their present-day legacy.

Ric Murphy is a historian, scholar, lecturer, and award-winning author exploring the rich contributions made by African Americans in United States history. 

The content and opinions expressed in these presentations are solely those of the speaker and not necessarily of the Virginia Museum of History & Culture.

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