The Lillian Goldman Law Library is proud to join with the Yale Black Law Students Association in remembering the most famous event in New Haven’s history, the Amistad case. In 1839 a group of Africans liberated themselves from the Spanish slave ship Amistad, and their abolitionist lawyers then defeated efforts to return them to slavery.
An open house in the Rare Book Room, at 6pm on February 10, will feature many of the library’s primary primary sources on the Amistad case, including contemporary newspaper accounts and the notebooks used by Roger Sherman Baldwin to prepare his arguments before the U.S. Supreme Court in U.S. v. The Amistad, 40 U.S. 518 (1840) (see below).
For those who can’t attend the open house, an album on the Law Library’s Flickr site, “The Amistad Case,” has images from the Law Library’s Amistad collection.
Following the open house, there will be a screening at 6:30pm of Stephen Spielberg’s 1997 film, Amistad, in Room 120, Yale Law School. Please join the Yale Black Law Students Association and the Law Library for this Black History Month event.
Here are a few online resources on the Amistad case:
- Federal Judicial Center, “Amistad: The Federal Courts and the Challenge to Slavery”
- Yale, Slavery & Abolition: The Amistad Affair
- Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library, “Drawings of the Amistad Prisoners, New Haven”
- ConnecticutHistory.org, “The Amistad”
- American Memory (Library of Congress). African American Odyssey - Slavery - Flights to Freedom
– MIKE WIDENER, Rare Book Librarian
Source: Roger Sherman Baldwin (1793-1863). Notebooks relating to the Amistad trial, .