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Joseph McGill Jr.

Prior to his current position as founder of the Slave Dwelling Project, Joseph McGill Jr. was a field officer for the National Trust for Historic Preservation. He is the former executive director of the African American Museum in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and the former director of history and culture at Penn Center, St. Helena Island, South Carolina. McGill was also a park ranger at Fort Sumter. He appears in the book Confederates in the Attic by Tony Horwitz. He is also a member of the South Carolina Humanities Council Speakers Bureau and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in professional English from South Carolina State University. In Sleeping with the Ancestors: How I Followed the Footprints of Slavery, McGill and his coauthor, Herb Frazier, tell the story of a future US president who fathered a child with one of his family’s enslaved women. They chronicle the path of an enslaved boy who purchased his freedom to then establish a prominent Black religious organization. And they share the compelling history of an African princess who survived slavery in Florida to take control of a plantation and its enslaved workers.

illustration of log cabin on book cover of Sleeping with the Ancestors