Learn more about the descendants of Monticello's enslaved families through our oral history project.
Getting Word: The African American Families of Monticello
In 1993, Monticello historians began an oral history project called Getting Word. By interviewing the descendants of Monticello’s enslaved families, they hoped to catch the words of ancestors—getting word back about who they were, where they lived, what dreams they had for their children. Over 100 interviews later, some universal themes have emerged: the importance of education, the centrality of faith and the church, the formidable strength of family bonds, and the struggle for freedom and equality.