James Armistead Lafayette: A Fight for Freedom and Equality

The Declaration of Independence and the words “all men are created equal” provided thousands of enslaved Africans high expectations and many were ready to fight for the country and their own personal freedom. Thousands of enslaved Africans impacted the war right from the start at Lexington and Concord, all the way to the end at Yorktown. This lesson will explore the life of James Armistead Lafayette, an enslaved African Virginian. Working as an undercover spy for George Washington, James risked his life to gather key intelligence about the British that helped secure an American victory at Yorktown. In this lesson, students will discover whether his efforts in service of the American cause helped or hindered his ability to achieve emancipation. 

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