An African-American columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch has opined that it is time to unlearn the “fake history” of slavery and “The Lost Cause” that ostensibly has been taught in schools in Virginia and the South. I am an advocate for the Truth in all things, and I am not opposed to his premise, although much “fake history” comes from the sins of omission in order to confirm one’s credentials as a victim in today’s progressive identity politics. As by far the majority of our African-American citizens are the descendants of slaves imported into the United States, we might find of interest the testimony of the last known individual in the United States who had been smuggled here in a slave ship just prior to the War Between the States. The noted African-American anthropologist, Zora Neale Hurston, recorded the testimony of Cudjo “Kossola” Lewis, near Mobile, Alabama, in her book Dust Tracks on a Road.
Lewis had been a member of the Takkoi nation. One morning they were attacked by the fearsome Amazon women warriors of Dahomy, who burst through the gates of the compound while the male warriors waited outside to seize those who fled. The old and infirm were beheaded and their heads carried off as trophies. The rest were marched in a slave coffle to the Kingdom of Dahomey and the barracoons on the beach at Dmydah. On the second day of the march, the Dahomians halted to smoke the severed heads, which had begun to rot. Lewis reported that they had to watch the heads of their friends and relatives turning on the long poles in the smoke.
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