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Press Releases

Tuesday, January 18, 2000

The Wreck of the Henrietta Marie - Subject of February 8 Lecture

SALISBURY, MD--In celebration of Black History Month the Office of Multiethnic Student Services at Salisbury State University sponsors the lecture and slide-presentation "The Wreck of the Henrietta Marie" by Washington Post columnist Michael H. Cottman on Tuesday, February 8. Free and open to the public, his presentation is at 7:30 p.m. in the Wicomico Room of the Guerrieri University Center.

Three-hundred years after the slave vessel, Henrietta Marie, sank off the coast of Key West, Cottman and a team of fellow members of the National Association of Black Scuba Divers placed a one-ton plaque on the ocean floor in honor of their African ancestors who were unwilling passengers aboard the Henrietta Marie. As the divers explored the artifacts on the wreckage Cottman discovered tiny shackles meant for children. With this discovery Cottman began his journey across three continents to uncover the slave ship's violent and moving history in an attempt to make sense of the history of his ancestors and striving for reconciliation with his homeland's past and his own country's future.

Cottman, one of a team of writers from New York Newsday that won the Pulitzer prize, is author of The Wreck of the Henrietta Marie: An African-American's Spiritual Journey to Uncover a Sunken Slave Ship's Past, Million Man March and The Family of Black America and a contributor to the book Thinking Black.

For more information on Cottman's presentation or a complete listing of the spring cultural events at Salisbury State, contact the SSU Public Relations Office at 410-543-6030.

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