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However, few really celebrate this aspect of their heritage.
Fifty years ago, in North Carolina especially, there were large groups of people who saw themselves as Black Indians. Franklin Frazier discusses them in depth in The Negro Family in the United States.
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It was acceptable to have a common-law marriage, where you basically held hands and agreed to be married. And as court records of the day show, lots of men chose to do it right in front of a nice big bed with a woman they had no intention of eating breakfast with.
Sometimes they hopped the next ship for England and got away with it; sometimes they were caught and escorted by armed guard and enraged father into marital bliss.
In coastal South Carolina, there are the Gullah people, and in coastal Georgia the Geechies.
(.) The Gullah are said to be descended from the Gola people of Angola, and the Geechies from the Gidzi people of Sierra Leone. The French colonizers of Louisiana were virtually all male.
And not patriarchal as we use the term today, where it can be applied to anything from the injustice of the glass ceiling to men who insist on standing up to pee. Plus, the idea of "patriarchy" and completely ruling your "subjects" was losing its popularity in an America that was screaming at a king to stay out of its room. PROMISE TO STAY ON YOUR SIDE OF THE BUNDLING BOARD By comparing marriage records with subsequent birth records, historians can tell that by the late 18th century, 30 to 40 percent of American brides were pregnant at their weddings.There is still a large community of Creoles in Louisiana today. It is said that, as intermediaries between the Blacks and the whites, they got European instruments into the hands of African musicians and thereby facilitated the development of jazz.In New England we find Cape Verdians, Africans who migrated here in the 18th and 19th century aboard whaling ships that stopped in Cabo Verde, an island off the coast of West Africa, to resupply and pick up extra hands.Gone were the days that a girl pointing across a magistrate's court to a scruffy farm boy was enough to force him to marry her. Marriage wasn't as formal an affair back then as you might think.But with bundling, if the girl should fall pregnant, there would be plenty of witnesses to claim the boy in question had access and opportunity. No ruination for the girl, no fatherless child, no shame for the parents, and the guy? You didn't need a license or even a presiding authority.