Devil's Own: Taking Stock in Empowerment

Writer: 
December 14, 2015

This stock certificate is a symbol of potential, hope, and empowerment. It represents an investment in Marcus Garvey’s Black Star Line steamship company, which was founded in 1919 through his United Negro Improvement Association (UNIA). Garvey, a Jamaican political leader, publisher, journalist, entrepreneur, and orator, was a proponent of the black-nationalist and Pan-African movements and through UNIA aimed to improve the lot of ethnic Africans. To that end, his steamship company sought to transport goods and black people throughout the African diaspora. The artifact, along with other Garvey-related documents in the Robert A. Hill Collection, was acquired recently by the John Hope Franklin Research Center.