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Sumner County Slave Trade presentation March 23

Last updated on March 29, 2022

By Julio Gautreaux

There will be a Sumner County Slave Trade presentation at Volunteer State Community College on Wed, March 23 at 11:15am at Caudill Hall on the Vol State campus in Gallatin. Prior to the presentation Joshua Rothman the author of “The ledger and the Chain” will have a book signing. The event has no cost and will be available to anyone. The presentation will also be streamed on zoom.

 According to the Vol State event calendar the book delves into the lives of Isaac Franklin and John Armfield. Rothman will be speaking about his book “The ledger and the chain” the most “successful” slave traders who lived in Sumner County according to Rothman.

“Mr. Rothman has done and an astounding amount of research into period narratives testifying to the brutality endured by trafficking victims,” said the Wall Street Journal in a 2021 review of Rothmans book.

Rothman grew up in Staten Island, NY. He received his undergraduate at Cornell University. Later Rothman got his masters and doctoral degrees at the University of Virginia. Since the year 2000 Rothman has taught history at the University of Alabama. Rothman Specializes in the histories of slavery and the American South according to his profile on Amazon.

Rothman has also written other books on this topic like Notorious in the neighborhood, Flush Times and Fever Dreams, and Reforming America 1815-1860. Rothman has also written articles for Smithsonian Magazine, The New Yorker, and The Washington Post. “Other scholars have produced accounts of the domestic slave trade Mr. Rothman writes about slave traders, and puts an indelible face on their inhumanity,” said the Wall Street Journal.

A building from the original Isaac Franklin plantation, the Fairview Mansion in Gallatin, is still standing.

The Rothman presentation is organized by the Vol State Community College Reconciliation Initiative Committee.

For more Info on the presentation contact Catherine Berresheim @

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