Lead: In 1820 the American Colonization Society began to send freed blacks back to Africa.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Formed at a time when most Americans were racists, either in favor of slavery or convinced that the continued presence of blacks was harmful to white society, the American Colonization Society established a settlement on the coast of West Africa. After the death of many settlers and initial setbacks, the Society sent Jehudi Ashmun, an Episcopal clergyman, to lead the colony. Ably assisted by Elijah Johnson, a settler whose leadership and timely intervention had prevented the collapse in the early days, Ashmun organized a defense force, started trade with the interior and, in 1824, led in establishing the colony as Liberia with a capital at Monrovia, named in honor of President James Monroe.

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