Calling All History Teachers !!!

This summer the National Endowment for the Humanities is funding two teacher training programs in New York around the issue of slavery.

Abolition and the Underground Railroad

July 7-26, Colgate University, Hamilton, NY

This three-week NEH summer seminar will focus on the history of the Underground Railroad in North America from the origins of slavery to the Reconstruction Era. Class time will be spent on intensive study of key primary and secondary texts on the seminar topics. There will be daily pedagogical sessions on classroom application of the areas of study. Field trips will travel to Auburn, Seneca Falls, Rochester, New York City, Albany, and North Elba … then to Northampton, Massachusetts, and Middelbury, Vermont. Guest speakers will include Manisha Sinha, Judith Wellman and Leigh Fought. The seminar director is Graham Hodges, the George Dorland Langdon, Jr. Professor of History at Colgate and author of David Ruggles: A Radical Black Abolitionist and The Underground Railroad in New York City (UNC Press 2010) among many other books.

Information about the seminar and how to apply can be found here: underground-railroad. 

Slavery in the Colonial North

July 14-20, Philipsburg Manor, Tarrytown, NY

Participants in the institute will explore both the institutional and personal sides of enslavement, understanding how slavery emerged under Dutch law and expanded and became codified under English rule. The institute will present the institution of slavery as interwoven throughout colonial development, as opposed to its usual compartmentalization in the mid-19th century American South. The institute will draw heavily on its location at Philipsburg Manor, a site which, for 20 years, has been interpreting the story of slavery in the colonial north through the stories of individuals who lived there. Participants will explore this history as well as discuss how to introduce this important but difficult subject in today’s classroom. A major focus of the institute will be on creating a curriculum unit that pulls directly from the institute’s resources, so that teachers can apply the institute’s content to their classroom. Participants will be able to grapple with this vital, complex subject in a constructive and meaningful way, thereby gaining not only a wealth of historical information but also the skills necessary to help their students engage with this subject.

The program is led by Dr. Jacqueline Simmons and Dr. Leslie Harris. Information on how to apply can be found here: