Smithsonian.com Flunks American History

The Smithsonian Institute is normally a reputable source for information; however, when they rely on freelance writers for stories, they put their reputation at risk, such as with this story. Freelance journalist Kat Eschner wrote the story. She has a master’s degree in journalism, but from what I can tell no training in history. She makes the claim that John Casor was “the first person to be arbitrarily declared a slave for life in the U.S.”

That is completely false. It’s related to the bogus claim that Anthony Johnson, an African-American, was the first slave owner in the United States. I previously blogged about this here. Ms. Eschner doesn’t list her sources for this article, but I wouldn’t be surprised if we found some neoconfederates at the bottom of it.

I’m very disappointed in Smithsonian.com for the phony history they allowed to be published on their site.

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One comment

  1. Wow! thoroughly disappointing…cmon Smithsonian youve gotta be joking me. people who say anthony johnson was the first slave owner and/or that anthony johnson’s case was the moment when slavery was first legally recognized in the colonies have no credibility. Its silly to think his case had ramifications for anyone outside of the people directly involved in that case.

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