The Early Caribbean Digital Archive is an open access collection of pre-twentieth-century Caribbean texts, maps, and images. Texts include travel narratives, novels, poetry, natural histories, and diaries that have not been brought together before as a single collection focused on the Caribbean.

Plantation slavery and settler colonialism are defining aspects of the early Caribbean—and both sit at the origin of the modern capitalist world. The texts and images collected here tell the story of European imperial domination, and of the enslaved African and indigenous American people whose land, labor, and lives shaped the culture and development of the Atlantic world.

The materials in the archive are primarily authored and published by Europeans, but the ECDA aims to use digital tools to “remix” the archive and foreground the presence and contributions of enslaved and free African, Afro-creole, and indigenous peoples in the Caribbean world.

The project team includes Professors Elizabeth Maddock Dillon and Nicole N. Aljoe, as well as Ph.D. students Benjamin Doyle, Dania Dwyer, Nicole Keller,  David Medina, Sarah Payne, Elizabeth Polcha, Alanna Prince, and Lara Roberts.


Doyle, Benjamin, Elizabeth Hopwood, Jim McGrath, and Abby Mullen. “Graduate Training Where Digital Scholarship and Early American Studies Meet.” Common-Place, 2016.

Aljoe, Nicole N., Elizabeth Maddock Dillon, Benjamin Doyle, and Elizabeth Hopwood. “Obeah and the Early Caribbean Digital Archive.” Atlantic Studies, 2015.

Dillon, Elizabeth Maddock. “By Design: Remapping the Colonial Archive.” Social Text, 2015.