What was the terrible transformation

The Terrible Transformation tells of the largest forced migration in recorded history and how this mass movement of people was instrumental in the creation of America.

After establishing settlements in North America, England joins in the international trade of human beings. Millions of Africans are abducted from their homelands to labor in the North American colonies. So horrific is their "middle passage" across the Atlantic that almost a quarter of them die during the crossing.

Slavery's inhumane codes and punishments foment African resistance and escape, bringing more brutality from slave holders. The nightmare has begun in the colonies.

In the words of Peter Wood (historian):

Perhaps in the middle of the 17th century, if you were one of several thousand Africans living in Virginia you certainly knew that your children would be free -- you might have that expectation. To suddenly find themselves involved in lifelong servitude, and then to realize that in fact their children might inherit the same status, that was a terrible blow, that was a terrible transformation. - PBS.org

The documentary Africans in America: America's Journey through Slavery which debuted in October, 1998 on PBS ncovers the dramatic, surprising roots of slavery from its beginnings in Europe through its brutal emergence in the New World.