Harvard President Larry Bacow has released the Report of the Committee on Harvard & the Legacy of Slavery, accepted the committee’s recommendations in full, and announced a historic commitment of $100 million to fund their implementation.
The committee found that “over nearly 150 years, from the university’s founding in 1636 until the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court found slavery unlawful, Harvard presidents and other leaders, as well as its faculty and staff, enslaved more than 70 individuals, some of whom labored on campus. Enslaved men and women served Harvard presidents and professors and fed and cared for Harvard students.”
The report also documents how Harvard was involved with financing industries that used the labor of enslaved people. It also notes that over many centuries, substantial donations were received from individuals who profited from industries that operated with enslaved workers.
The university pledged to address ts ties to slavery by taking the following steps: