Statement of Ethics

The ethics of the Digital Library on American Slavery (DLAS) is centered around inclusive and reparative scholarship about slavery in the United States and responsible stewardship of historical data about enslaved people in digital spaces.

DLAS recognizes that the source materials reflect the perspectives and biases of the material’s authors, reflecting the systems of power and racist ideologies of the period in which they were created. DLAS aims to center the lives and humanity of enslaved peoples and make available by name as many enslaved individuals as possible.

Digital spaces and infrastructures are not neutral. In creating the DLAS database and website, DLAS is committed to building systems and spaces, creating documentation, and using language that is oriented toward reparative and anti-racist practices.

DLAS is committed to working collaboratively with genealogists, researchers, and community partners to continually develop and follow practices that respect the lives of enslaved people.

This statement was informed by the following: On These Grounds and Enslaved: Peoples of the Historic Slave Trade.