EAS Miscellany encourages educators to integrate articles from our journal into the classroom. As a part of our new series “Teaching EAS,” we invite you to use this lesson plan as a model for designing your curriculum and teaching Early American Studies articles. If you would like to create other lesson plans using EAS articles, please download our template here and share your plan with us.
Teaching EAS: “Consider the Source: An 1800 Maroon Treaty” by Rachel Herrmann
After their exile in 1800, a community of Jamaican Maroons left Nova Scotia for the British antislavery colony of Sierra Leone. Their captains met with Sierra Leone Company officials to negotiate a treaty, comprised of various manuscripts from the National Archives at Kew in the United Kingdom. Rachel Herrmann’s article “Consider the Source: An 1800 Maroon Treaty” argues these documents make up a treaty by explaining how the negotiations occurred and identifying themes of “settlement, alliance, and antislavery” within them.
This lesson plan serves to meet the following objectives:
- Students will:
- Explain why the negotiations between Maroon captains and Sierra Leone Company officials make up a treaty.
- Understand the significance of consolidating different sources into one.
- Explain what is revealed by the fragmented source material regarding anti-slavery action(s) and responses in the early 19th century.
- Consider the extent to which the archives can be manipulated to serve the interests of those in power.
Click “Download” below for a PDF of this free lesson plan:
Supplemental Images and Documents:
- Folios from the original Terms, located in the Sierra Leone Original Correspondence series.
- Almost Home: Maroons between Slavery and Freedom in Jamaica, Nova Scotia, and Sierra Leone by Ruma Chopra
- Freedom’s Debtors: British Antislavery in Sierra Leone in the Age of Revolution by Padraic X. Scanlan
- True-Born Maroons by Kenneth M. Bilby
Rachel B. Herrmann is a Senior Lecturer in Modern American History at Cardiff University. She is a historian of food, hunger, water, and borders. Her books include No Useless Mouth: Waging War and Fighting Hunger in the American Revolution and To Feast on Us as Their Prey: Cannibalism and the Early Modern Atlantic.