Jamestown, United States, Aug 22 (AFP/APP):Carefully raking through soil in suffocating heat at an archeological dig site in historic Jamestown, Charde Reid is working hard to retrace bits of the life of Angela, who arrived here from Africa 400 years ago.
After a terrifying crossing of the Atlantic, Angela was one of the first African slaves known to reach the first permanent English settlement in North America, which would later be part of the United States.
“I see a lot of connections with my own family’s background, and what began here, in 1619,” said Reid, a 32-year-old African-American Virginia native.
She calls the first slaves to reach the state “our foremothers and our forefathers — of not only African-American culture, but American culture in general.”
Reid herself says her family tree includes a white indentured servant and a black slave.
As she works, bricks begin to appear — the remnants of more recent buildings erected on the site of the Jamestown estate where Angela lived.
The rolling green landscape, which gently slopes towards the James River, is likely not all that different to the one that the African slaves saw upon their arrival in August 1619.