Kingsley Plantation – Fort George Island, Florida

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Kingsley 003 (2)

The Kingsley Plantation – a 60-acre waterfront property on the banks of the Fort George River in northeastern Florida – is all that remains today of a once thriving 1,000-acre cotton farm owned by slave trader Zephaniah Kingsley, managed by his African-born wife (and former slave) Anna Jai, and cultivated by his workforce of nearly 60 indentured slaves from 1814 to 1839. It is a place of both haunting beauty and profound devastation, a moving reminder of one of the darkest and most tragic periods in American history.

This post documents the plantation’s history under Kingsley’s management, and includes images my husband and I captured during a brief visit to Fort George Island in July 2015. In typical Florida summer fashion, temperatures soared well above 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 degrees Celsius) on the date of our visit. While the heat and humidity were intensely uncomfortable – and indeed suffocating at…

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