MESDA Journal Authors Roundtable

February 25, 2021 @ 1:00PM EST Live via Zoom

The eight articles and research notes in the The 2020 Volume of the MESDA Journal highlight new scholarship about the lives and legacies of free and enslaved African American artists and artisans throughout the early American South. Please join guest editor Dr. Torren Gatson and authors Dr. Tiffany Momon, Grahame Long, and Gary Albert for a roundtable in which they discuss their work.

Dr. Tiffany Momon’s article, John “Quash” Williams, Charleston Builderexamines the life of John “Quash” Williams through the lens of his best known masterpiece, the circa 1750 Pinckney Mansion, one of Charleston’s most influential 18th century domestic buildings.  By painstakingly combing through surviving documentary evidence, Momon recovered Williams’s biography and revealed his skills as a craftsman; skills he used to liberate himself, his family, and others.  Grahame Long and Gary Albert’s search for John Gough began with the discovery of a hidden signature on a secretary wardrobe.  Their article, John Gough, Free Black Cabinetmaker of Charleston, 1763–1791tells the story of Gough’s emancipation and life in Charleston.  Both articles explore how Black craftsmen navigated the ever changing landscape of race in 18th century Charleston.


To register please follow this link.


Dr. Tiffany Momon is author of John “Quash” Williams, Charleston Builder.  Dr. Momon is a Visiting Assistant Professor of History at Sewanee, The University of the South. She is also a founder of the Black Craftspeople Digital Archive.

Grahame Long is is co-author of the article  John Gough, Free Black Cabinetmaker of Charleston, 1763–1791.  After a long career at the Charleston Museum, Grahame is now the Director of Museums at the Historic Charleston Foundation.

Dr. Torren Gatson is guest editor of the 2020 MESDA Journal.  Dr. Gatson is an Assistant Professor of History at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.  He is also a co-director of the Black Craftspeople Digital Archive.

Gary Albert is co-author of the article  John Gough, Free Black Cabinetmaker of Charleston, 1763–1791.  Gary is Director of MESDA Research, Editor of the MESDA Journal, and Adjunct Curator of Metals at Old Salem and MESDA.