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Rutgers confronts ties to slavery in report

NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. — Rutgers University is confronting its historical ties to slavery.

The New Jersey school, founded in 1766, has compiled research that sheds more light on its beginnings, including an untold story of a slave who helped build the university’s iconic Old Queens administration building.

The detailed report released Friday is published in the book ‘‘Scarlet and Black.’’ It shows how intertwined slavery is with the early history of Rutgers, a common theme among America’s Colonial colleges.

The book combines previously documented history with some new details to paint a vivid picture of the university’s relationship with slavery, a history school officials say was largely unacknowledged until this year. It also examines the displacement of Native Americans from land transferred to Rutgers. ‘‘It’s something that I think most people at Rutgers had no clue about,’’ said New Brunswick campus chancellor Richard Edwards.


The book, compiled by a panel of professors and students, notes that the university’s namesake, Henry Rutgers, and its first president owned slaves.

Associated Press