Spring 2021

Penn & Slavery Project Findings

Sophie Nichols, revisited the mob violence in Philadelphia during the 1830s-1850s and found evidence and supporting secondary literature for the participation of Penn medical students from the South. Her work also reminded me that the mayor of Philadelphia during the burning of Pennsylvania Hall (1838), with Penn students likely in the mix, sanctioned the destruction and was himself a Penn grad. She also did research on Hunter Holmes McGuire, a Penn medical student who organized the most significant anti-abolition student protest of the era and who went on to become a very important figure in the Confederacy.
Mary Neal examined a Penn medical school grad, Lewis Meredith Jiggitts, a substantial enslaver of over a hundred people, who moved from North Carolina to Mississippi and whose emancipated enslaved laborers, some of whom had taken the Jiggitts name, could be found in the records after the Civil War as agricultural laborers. 
Hartman Russell worked with historian Billy Smith to locate Penn's first campus in the context of in the city's free black population.
Loveday Trumbull recreated the world of Black practitioner James Henry Wilson to determine how he was regarded by his fellow pharmacists and whose mentorship he might have benefited from.