History has many pages that are excluded to the average reader, especially to those of African descent. There are many stories yet to be told, such as the story of Liberia and the American Colonization society. The American Colonization Society (ACS) was founded by Robert Finley in 1816 with a goal to send free African Americans, called free people of color at the time, back to the continent of Africa.
There was a growing fear among the white population that free Blacks would encourage the enslaved to rebel, and also fears of mixing occurring in the population. There was also the incentive of having the Free Blacks act as missionaries to Native Africans and convert them to Christianity. The first ship of the ACS, the Elizabeth, departed New York on February 6, 1820, and carried 91 settlers, 88 Blacks and 3 whites.
The colony expanded over the years, and between 1821 and 1838, the ACS developed its first settlement, which would be known as Liberia, and its capital, Monrovia, was named after US president Monroe.
Over the years, other colonization societies joined in this venture, creating three main colonies: Mississippi in Africa, Kentucky in Africa, and the Republic of Maryland. However, they were not genuinely motivated to help African people, but instead were controlled by whites or elitist Blacks.
In 1842, Liberia was governed by Joseph Jenkins Roberts, a mixed-race man, making him the first non-white governor, and in 1848, he became the first president of the first republic of Africa.