The Airbnb listing in Mississippi seemingly had everything a traveler could ask for in a bed-and-breakfast accommodation: a suite with exquisite antique furnishings, soft linens, a brand-new bathroom and more.
via: New York Post
TikTok user Wynton Yates, who goes by @LawyerWinton, brought attention to the listing, posting screenshots of the 1830s structure — which was moved from a nearby plantation to the one it currently sits on — that was advertised as a “meticulously restored” bed-and-breakfast
“The history of slavery in this country is constantly denied and now it’s being mocked by being turned into a luxurious vacation spot,” Yates says in the clip, which has been viewed more than 2.6 million times.
The listing — which has since been removed from Airbnb — was advertised as “The Panther Burn Cottage at Belmont Plantation” in Greenville, Mississippi. The description said it was formerly a slave cabin in the 1830s, then a sharecropper cabin and medical office for local farmers.
“How is this okay in somebody’s mind to rent this out? A place where human beings were kept as slaves,” the civil rights attorney questions in the now-viral video.
In screenshots posted by the TikToker, the owner Brad has been identified as a Superhost, which someone who “goes above and beyond in their hosting duties and is a shining example of how a Host should be,” as per their website.
He adds the rave reviews on the property are just as shocking, with guests describing their stay as “historic but elegant” and “memorable.”
Yates says an accurate history of the cabin has not been shown at all, with no attempts to educate people on the actual conditions slaves lived in, with the accommodation featuring modern amenities such as Wi-Fi and running water.
Mic reports there are several other properties that also advertise other former slaves’ quarters as luxury accommodation.
A representative for Airbnb told The Post in a statement that “Properties that formerly housed the enslaved have no place on Airbnb. We apologize for any trauma or grief created by the presence of this listing, and others like it, and that we did not act sooner to address this issue.” The representative added that in recent days, the company removed the Mississippi listing, is removing listings in the US known to include former slave quarters — and is working with experts to develop new policies that address other properties associated with slavery.
In a follow-up video, Yates says he thinks the slave cabins on plantations should be kept in their original conditions, to educate people on the conditions enslaved men, women and children were forced to endure.
“The owners of these properties in the present day should be obligated, or feel obligated, to research and actually find the history of these places, these plantations, find the people that lived here, their lives, their names, because there are people’s ancestors that are still alive today,” he says.
“There are so many black Americans in this country that do not have the opportunity, the resources or the ability to know who their ancestors are, know the names of their ancestors,” he continues, citing the Whitney Plantation in Louisiana as an example of somewhere doesn’t shy away from its history in another clip.
@lawyerwynton Replying to @Vanessa ? Beat Automotivo Tan Tan Tan Viral – WZ Beat
“I think these places should remain, but they should remain in a way that gives something back to the communities that are still affected by the things that happened in these places,” he explains.
Not @airbnb with a whole slave cabin available for rent. Who needs a hotel when you can instead stay at the place where Black families were tortured. Big thanks to @WyntonYates for posting this. pic.twitter.com/bLqXUA5BgO
— Femi Redwood (@femiredwood) July 29, 2022