Thomas Jefferson’s plantation has acknowledged his relationship with an enslaved woman Sally Hemings.
“Love does not cause suffering: what causes it is the sense of ownership, which is love’s opposite,” Antoine de Saint-Exupery said but he surely wasn’t talking about 19th century America and its president, Thomas Jefferson, a slavery critic and a slave owner.
Jefferson and Hemings’ relation was considered shameful at the time and for years his estate did not acknowledge her, possibly out of embarrassment. Now Monticello Plantation is finally acknowledging Sally Hemings and is going to spend $35M on the renovation of her room.
The association which was brought to light caused controversial reaction: some adore the romantic story, some criticise Jefferson for using double standards.
We all that bigotry has been a part of white culture for many years by know so it is anyway pleasant to see that the attempt of the historians to tell the true story succeded. “It will portray her outside of the mystery,” Thomas Jefferson Foundation’s Public Historian of Slavery and African-American Life Niya Bates said. The more real Black history we learn, the more chances for great Black present and future we have.