Two London's in Williamsburg: Using Historical Imagination to Reinterpret the Meaning of Reconciliation and Memorialization in the Archive
Date Thesis Awarded
Honors Thesis -- Open Access
Bachelors of Arts (BA)
his is the story of two enslaved Black males, both named London, who lived in 18th and 19th century Williamsburg, Virginia. One was a body servant, which served a similar function to a personal attendant, to the sons of Carter Braxton, when they were students at William & Mary. The second London attended the Bray school, one of the first schools for free and enslaved African Americans in the continental United States. He was enslaved by a woman …. who owned and operated a tavern in the town. Since both London’s are largely absent from the archives, there is no way to fully account for their lives, but there is a way to imagine what their lives might have been like. This thesis argues that something can be learned about their existence by considering them through the experiences of their enslaved contemporaries, James Hambleton Christian, a body servant, and tavern worker Gowan Pamphlet, who, for different reasons, are present in the archives.
Miller, Ethan, "Two London's in Williamsburg: Using Historical Imagination to Reinterpret the Meaning of Reconciliation and Memorialization in the Archive" (2023). Undergraduate Honors Theses. William & Mary. Paper 2053.