WHOLE TRUTH of SLAVERY in the AMERICAS #6


Continuing  the  lecture  from  Professor  Eakin:


FOR  MOST  OF  THESE  PEOPLE  THIS  MUST  HAVE  BEEN  A  DEVASTATING   EXPERIENCE.  THE  DEATH  ON  THE  COAST  MUST  HAVE  BEEN  ENORMOUS.  IN  A SENSE  MANY  OF  THE  PORTS  MUST  HAVE  BECOME  GRAVE  YARDS.


BEQUAQUA  SAYS  HE  HAD  NEVER  SEEN  A  SHIP  BEFORE,  AND  "...MY  IDEA  OF  IT  WAS  THAT  IT  WAS  SOME  KIND  OF  OBJECT  OF  WORSHIP  OF  THE  WHITE  MAN.  I  IMAGINED  WE  WERE  ALL  TO  BE  SLAUGHTERED,  AND  WERE  BEING  LED  THERE  FOR  THAT  PURPOSE."


NOW  THE  PASSAGE  ACROSS  THE  ATLANTIC  MUST  HAVE  BEEN  HARROWING  EVEN  AT  THE  BEST,  THE  BEST  CONDITIONS. 


JOSEPH  MILLER'S  WONDERFUL  BOOK  "WAY  OD  DEATH" (1988)  WHICH  LOOKS  AT  THE  ANGOLAN  SLAVE  TRADE  RECREATES  THIS  IN  ENORMOUS  DETAIL.  AND  ONCE  AGAIN  THE  BEST  DOCUMENTATION  ON  A  GLOBAL  SCALE  IS  DAVID ELTIS'  CD.


THE  AVERAGE  SHIP  PROBABLY  HAD  ABOUT  400  PEOPLE  CHAINED  IN  GROUPS AND  STACKED  LIKE  BOOKS  ON  SHELVES,  BELOW  THE  DECK.


WITH  MINIMAL  FOOD  AND  WATER,  BECAUSE  THE  MORE  SUPPLIES  YOU  HAD  ON  BOARD,  THE  LESS  SPACE  YOU  HAD  FOR  CARGO.


DISEASE,  PUNISHMENT,  AND  TROPICAL  TEMPERATURES   ABOVE  100  DEGREES  ABOVE  DECK,  IT  MUST  HAVE  BEEN  HORRIBLE  CONDITIONS  BELOW.


ANY  TYPICAL  VOYAGE  MUST  HAVE  LOST  10-20  PERCENT  OF  AFRICANS  THAT  WERE  CROSSING.  AND  IT  WAS  NOT  HEALTHY  FOR  THE  CREWS  EITHER.  IT'S  PROBABLE  THAT  THE  EUROPEAN  CREWS  THAT  WERE  ON  BOARD  THESE  SHIPS,  DIED  AT  THE  SAME  RATE  AS  THOSE  PEOPLE  THEY  WERE  CARRYING  ACROSS. 


THE  SHIPS  WERE  SO  UN-HEALTHY,  THAT  AT  TIMES  WHEN  THEY  ARRIVED  IN  THE  NEW  WORLD,  THE  SHIPS  ARE  SCUTTLED  AND  BURNT.


THIS  SAYS  SOMETHING  ABOUT  THE  CONDITIONS  ON  BOARD.


SOME  OF  THESE  SLAVE  CAPTAINS  LEAVE  ACCOUNTS,  AND  SO  SOME  OF OUR  BEST  FIRST-HAND  SOURCES  ARE  SLAVE  CAPTAINS  WHO  LATER  DECIDE  THAT  WHAT  THEIR  DOING  IS  IMMORAL,  AND  THEY  WRITE  ABOUT  THIS.


AND  IN  FACT  WHAT  GETS  MY  VOTE  AS  THE  GREATEST  SONG  EVER  WRITTEN,  WAS  WRITTEN  BY  A  FORMER  SLAVE  SHIPPER,  JOHN  NEWTON (1725-1807)  AN  ENGLISHMAN  IN  THE  18TH  CENTURY,  WHO  HAS  A  RELIGIOUS  EXPERIENCE  AND  GIVES  UP   HIS  TRADE,  IS  AUTHOR  OF  "AMAZING  GRACE."


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TO  BE  CONTINUED