Lesson Plan

Runaway Slaves: From the Revolution to the New Republic

Who were the enslaved people in colonial America? Using ads from enslavers looking to recapture escaped people, young historians put faces and identities to them. Primary sources, such as wanted ads, help scholars reconstruct who these people were and what life may have been like.

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CCSS: Adaptable
Instructional Ideas
  • Discuss the identities of a typical runaway enslaved person in colonial Maryland
  • Create a portrait of a person who had escaped from slavery
Classroom Considerations
  • Descriptions of slavery and enslaved people may be traumatic for some class members
  • Lesson encourages creativity and critical thinking
  • Resources offer new ways of looking at primary sources to understand the past
  • None