Drenched in sweat from the African humidity, Joseph Roberts angrily crumpled the letter from the racist American Colonization Society and threw it into the Atlantic Ocean. He was about to lose everything.
He would not stand for this!
He’d already lost so much: his birth country, his wife and child’s deaths within a year of arriving in Liberia, and now they wanted to absolve the governorship he’d held since 1845!
After escaping a racist United States, he’d risked everything to rebuild a life in Africa. He had to strike back.
In 1847, Roberts declared his beautiful country the new Republic of Liberia and was elected the first president.
No one could take their sovereignty now! Roberts was determined to build a country governed BY AND FOR FREE Black people. But America went low.
Roberts beat America at its own game. He obtained recognition from Europe, forcing America’s submission. Africa’s oldest republic, Liberia was never colonized by Europe!
This pioneer’s determination to self-govern and build strong Black communities by any means necessary reminds us to continue fighting for a life free of racist tyranny.