Lissette Acosta Corniel

Lecturer in Africana Studies Lissette Acosta Corniel recently received a Fulbright award to conduct research on the first free and enslaved black Africans in the Americas. Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, functioned as the initial main port of what later became known as transatlantic slave trade. Acosta Corniel will focus on the first black female slaves and will conduct her research in the Archivo General de la Nación, the Dominican Republic's national archives.

Among the women she will study is a free black woman who operated a medical-like facility from her hut before 1502. According to Acosta Corniel, “this information was obtained from a 1695 document which shows that the recognition deserved by the free black woman, who founded the first hospital of the Americas, is misleadingly attributed to Governor Nicolás de Ovando.”

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