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article imageHistorians search for body of Yarrow Mamout, USA's first Muslim

By Katerina Nikolas     Nov 25, 2012 in World
Historians are searching for the body and belongings of America's first Muslim, Yarrow Mamout, which they believe could be buried on a property in Washington DC's historic Georgetown.
When real estate developer Deyi Awadallah purchased a property in Georgetown he had no idea the body of Yarrow Mamout could be buried there. Although possibly millions of Muslims were shipped to America as part of the slave trade, Yarrow remains one of the few whom historians have details about.
Al Arabiya reported Awadallah, a Muslim American of Palestinian descent, has agreed to allow archaeologists the opportunity to search for the body before he commences work building a new property on the land. He said “I’m trying to respect the situation. It deserves that."
Yarrow, who died in 1823, purchased the property in 1800, four years after being emancipated. He spent 60 years as a slave in America after being captured by slave traders in Guinea, West Africa, at the age of 14. According to Culture Tourism DC, Yarrow was a lifelong Muslim fluent in Arabic. He could also read and write and established his own business as a brick-maker after gaining his freedom.
PBS reported two notable portraits were painted of Yarrow in his old age. It is believed he was a rarity as a practicing Muslim in his day.
More about Yarrow Mamout, Slavery, James H Johnston, America's first Muslim
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