[MGSA-L] New Book: The First Black Archaeologist of Greece

Paris Papamichos Chronakis pchronakis at gmail.com
Tue Feb 8 06:22:13 PST 2022

Of possible interest to all members of the list for one reason or another:
John W.I. Lee, *The First Black Archaeologist: A Life of John Wesley
*The First Black Archaeologist *reveals the untold story of a pioneering
African American classical scholar, teacher, community leader, and
missionary. Born into slavery in rural Georgia, John Wesley Gilbert
(1863-1923) gained national prominence in the early 1900s, but his
accomplishments are little known today. Using evidence from archives across
the U.S. and Europe, from contemporary publications, and from newly
discovered documents, this book chronicles, for the first time, Gilbert's
remarkable journey. As we follow Gilbert from the segregated public schools
of Augusta, Georgia, to the lecture halls of Brown University, to his
hiring as the first black faculty member of Augusta's Paine Institute, and
through his travels in Greece, western Europe, and the Belgian Congo, we
learn about the development of African American intellectual and religious
culture, and about the enormous achievements of an entire generation of
black students and educators.

Readers interested in the early development of American archaeology in
Greece will find an entirely new perspective here, as Gilbert was one of
the first Americans of any race to do archaeological work in Greece. Those
interested in African American history and culture will gain an invaluable
new perspective on a leading yet hidden figure of the late 1800s and early
1900s, whose life and work touched many different aspects of the African
American experience.

Paris Papamichos Chronakis
Lecturer in Modern Greek History
Department of History
Royal Holloway, University of London
skype name: pchronakis
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