Food of the Enslaved: Barbecue

Jonathan Townsend

Posted on March 16 2017

This video is the second of a series that focuses on historic foods of the enslaved African community of North America.

We recently had the privilege to visit Gunston Hall in Mason Neck, VA. While we were there, we met Michael Twitty, an historical interpreter and culinary historian who specializes in food of the African-American community from enslavement in the mid-18th century to post-reconstruction in the mid to late 19th century. In this video, Michael grills beef ribs and prepares two sauces: an 18th-century style vinegar mop, and a more complex 19th-century style BBQ sauce.

Gunston Hall holds a very special place in American History. It was the home of George Mason, a founding father in American history. Many of the rights and liberties we enjoy today as American citizens can be traced to the insistent influence of George Mason.

For more information on Michael’s Book!

Michael Twitty’s Blog:

Gunston Hall Website:

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