Early Caribbean Digital Archive (ECDA)

The ECDA is an open access collection of pre-twentieth-century Caribbean texts, maps, and images. Texts include travel narratives, novels, poetry, natural histories, and diaries that have not been brought together before as a single collection focused on the Caribbean.

Plantation slavery and settler colonialism are defining aspects of the early Caribbean—both sit at the origin of the modern capitalist world. The texts and images collected here tell the story of European imperial domination, and of the enslaved African and indigenous American people whose lives, labor, and land shaped the culture and development of the Atlantic world.

The materials in the archive are primarily authored and published by Europeans, but the ECDA aims to use digital tools to “remix” the archive and foreground the centrality and creativity of enslaved and free African, Afro-creole, and indigenous peoples in the Caribbean world.

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