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Honoring The Slaves Who Helped Build New York City - 2003-10-08

The remains of over four hundred Africans were returned October 3 to New York City, where most had been slaves during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The bones had originally been buried in a large, forgotten slave graveyard near New York's City Hall, but had been removed for research after the graves were discovered at a construction site in 1991. At a Manhattan pier in clear view of Ground Zero and the Brooklyn Bridge, the remains of four hundred nineteen African slaves were memorialized at a solemn ceremony before their reburial the next day. Their bones had been excavated from the topmost layer of an 18th century graveyard containing the remains of an estimated twenty thousand Africans most of whom died as slaves.

VOA's Adam Phillips reports on an historic and emotional homecoming. Click the above links to download or listen to his report.