clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Harvard Law School plaque acknowledges slavery’s role in institution’s history

University’s latest marker

Photo via Smithsonian Magazine

Harvard Law School has installed a plaque in the institution’s main plaza that acknowledges the role of slavery in the institution’s establishment in 1817.

The move is the latest that the nation’s oldest university has undertaken to mark slavery’s place in its success.

The law school in March 2016 retired its shield because it included bits from the coat of arms of a slave-owning family. And the university a month later unveiled a plaque at Wadsworth House, where Harvard presidents once lived, to honor four slaves who toiled there.

Related: Boston abolitionist sites: Mapping the region's role in the anti-slavery movement

The latest plaque, at the law school, also comes amid a larger debate about monuments and memorials to Confederate leaders and officers. That debate has led to the covering-up of New England’s only Confederate memorial—a marker on Georges Island in Boston Harbor.