Continuing Education

The Art and History of Black Muslims in Early America

Muslims have been present in the territory that became the United States for centuries. It is estimated that among the Africans forcibly brought to and enslaved in America, approximately 10–20% were originally Muslim. While information about this often-unrecognized portion of the enslaved population in American history can be difficult to recover, a few extraordinary individuals emerge through art and material artifacts, including Yarrow Mamout (1736–1823), who, after being freed, was known to sing praises to God through the streets of the nation’s capital and whose portrait was painted by revered American artist Charles Wilson Peale; and Omar Ibn Said (1770–1864), who died enslaved and whose story we know through his autobiography that survives in the Library of Congress, the same institution that preserves the copy of the Qur’an owned by Thomas Jefferson.

Presented by Ashley Dimmig, Director, Crossman Gallery

Thursday, March 16, 2023, 2:00 pm 

Lectures are open to the public and held at 2 p.m. in the Gathering Room at Cedar Crest, 1702 South River Road in Janesville. Free parking is available and registration is not required. Updates will be posted on facebook, along with live streaming, when available. Contact Kari Borne at or 262-472-1003 for further information or to request accommodations. 

Cedar Crest

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