Rebecca’s Revival, Creating Black Christianity in the Atlantic World, by Jon F. Sensbach; paperback; 320 pages; published 2006
Rebecca’s Revival is the remarkable story of a Caribbean woman – a slave turned evangelist – who helped inspire the rise of black Christianity in the Atlantic world. All but unknown today, Rebecca Protten left an enduring influence on African-American religion and society. Born in 1718, Protten embarked on an itinerant mission, preaching to hundreds of the enslaved Africans of St. Thomas, a Danish sugar colony in the West Indies. Laboring in obscurity and weathering persecution from hostile planters, Protten and other black preachers created the earliest African Protestant congregation in the Americas.
The Old Salem Museums & Gardens Hidden Town Project was initiated in December 2016 with a mission: To Research and Reveal the History of People of African descent in Salem. The history is complicated, and the research-based project is focused on identifying people and building their biographies, as well as understanding their lives within the white Moravian world. The voluminous records of the Moravian Archives provide insight and information about people and changes through time.
The Hidden Town Project builds on several decades of work at Old Salem, especially beginning in 1989 with the restoration of St. Philips Moravian Church and the accompanying discovery process through scholarship in the archives and through archaeology. Historian Jon Sensbach, PhD, began his research in the mid-1980s and Archaeologist Leland Ferguson, PhD, began excavation on the graveyards in the early 1990s. We are proud to offer their important publications on our website.