Shahzad Bhatti Welcome to my ramblings and rants!

June 14, 2004

An excerpt from Were My African-American Ancestors Muslims

Filed under: Politics — admin @ 7:37 pm

An excerpt from Were My African-American Ancestors Muslims
At the time Columbus discovered America, Islamic Empires held greater power in the Western World than European kingdoms. They controlled the overland trading routes that transported oriental goods from the Far East to Europe, ruling from India to Western Africa. According to Allan D. Austin in African Muslims in Antebellum America, Islam had penetrated areas such as Senegal, Timbuktu, and the Lake Chad area in Africa by 1100 C.E. From these localities westward to the Atlantic Ocean, slave traders kidnapped the majority of their victims. The rise of European maritime trade in the 16th and 17th centuries triggered the decline of Islamic political supremacy and introduced new nations as world leaders.

Historians have identified many authentic Arabic texts written in the United States before the Civil War. Many of these manuscripts have been reproduced in the books listed below. When translated, most turn out to be memorized sections of the Qu’ran, revealing slaves’ struggles to maintain differing religious beliefs in an oppressive Christian nation. These writings also reveal high levels of education attained by the authors in Africa prior to enslavement and forced emigration. Unfortunately slavery has largely silenced our present knowledge of these educated people. It is known that slave masters often placed Muslim slaves as supervisors over their fellow bondsmen.

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