Free Black Man in France: James Hemings Makes His Culinary Mark in History

Free Black Man in France: James Hemings Makes His Culinary Mark in History

Hello Meltingpot Readers, I had one of those driveway moments the other day when I heard this story on NPR. It’s about Thomas Jefferson’s enslaved chef, James Hemings, yes, the brother of Sally Hemings. James was apparently quite the culinary genius, so much so, that when Jefferson traveled to Paris for a five-year stay, he took James with him so he could learn the art of French cuisine. While there, James lived as a free man, indeed learned the secrets of French cooking and considered a bid for freedom. Check…

12 Years A Slave Has Me Undone

12 Years A Slave Has Me Undone

Hello Meltingpot Readers, This past weekend I went to see 12 Years A Slave with my cousin. It wasn’t a film I was excited to see, it was more of a compulsion. When Hollywood takes on the Black experience, I feel it is my duty to support the effort. I also was intrigued by the very true story of a free Black man tricked and kidnapped into slavery who manages to survive 12 years of inhuman bondage and still return home to his family. Dear readers, can I just say,…