A Day in History


Peter Salem,Peter Salem born a slave but, freed by his master so he could enlist in the Massachusetts Minutemen, is the “Person in History’ this month.  In spite of the unlimited hardships placed on slaves in the 17th and 18 centuries, many rose above them to make great and lasting contributions to the growth of the new nation–America.  Discover Peter Salem’s contribution by clicking on the link below.

 

http://www.blackpast.org/aah/salem-peter-ca-1750-1816

 

 

Article Comments

A reader made the comment below after clicking on the link, reading the entire article, and viewing a painting about Peter Salem’s “Battle at Bunker Hill.”

  • The man who was the hero of the moment was placed behind the man with a sword, who did not fell the enemy….Salem did.  But Grosvenor became the subject of the painting, unless I am missing something about his importance to the event.  From the entry we read, it would seem that Salem was the hero of the moment, but is given a secondary place in the painting.

    May 29 at 9:08 p.m.
    I agree with you … (Salem was the hero) but given that the painting was done in the late 18th century (1787) when slavery was still “live and well” in America, the artist obviously felt he could not bestow that kind of honor on an ex-slave.  As the article states, in 1775, President Washington was not allowing African Americans to fight in the Union Army.  It was only in 1783 when he allowed that to happen.
    Also, most of American society believed that “the slave always walked behind his master.”  The picture typifies that thinking, while still trying to give credit to the ex-slave.
    You are very perceptive!
    Thanks.

    Additional Information

    The link below leads to clarification by another writer of the painting in the article on Peter Salem … please read it.  The clarification reveals the painting did not depict Peter Salem at all, but a servant of Grosvenor.
    Again I repeat … “we are what we believe!”  The great part about all of this is … we can change what we believe!  That change starts with self-analysis — “An independent, methodical attempt to study and comprehend one’s own personality, emotions, and behavior.”  If you don’t like what you see, work to change it.  If you like what you see, ask yourself if what you see, is how you would like others to treat you.
    Lying or self-justification are key elements of thought that have to be removed, if change is to occur.