Black Cargoes : A history of the Atlantic Slave Trade 1518-1865 by Daniel P. Mannix in collaboration with Malcolm Cowley
London : Longmans, 1963. First British Edition. Hardcover. 306 pages ; 23 cm. 30 shilling dust jacket in minimal wear. Light foxing to top page edge. Pages are unmarked and binding is firm.
The Negro slave trade with the Americas was a gigantic commercial operation that changed the history of the world. By a conservative estimate it destroyed between thirty and forty million people, in England and France it produced enormous fortunes which helped to finance the Industrial Revolution. In Africa it produced misery and social disintegration. In America it gave rise to the plantation system, the maritime trade of New England and the Civil War.
Slavery started in the newly settled Spanish island of Hispaniola; after 1650 it rapidly expanded with the growth of large-scale sugar planting and reached its climax in the eighteenth century. In 1807 Great Britain legally abolished the trade, but in spite of the vigilance of the Royal Navy it persisted and was not to end until after 1865.
BLACK CARGOES also tells where the Negroes came from, how they were enslaved, how they were purchased by sea captains, how they were packed into the hold like other merchandise- but with greater losses in transit-and how the survivors were sold in the West Indian and American markets.
It is a story of greed, violence, daring and incredible callousness, enacted by white men and black men alike-among them Sir John Hawkins and the King of Dahomey, American merchant princes, Queen Elizabeth I, Thomas Clarkson, the great reformer, and the diabolical Captain Canot—against a background of the horrors of the Middle Passage, the dividends of the Lancashire cotton mills and the heroism of the British navy. The slave trade left behind it a rich heritage in music, art, science and literature, but it inflicted wounds which are still unstaunched.
DANIEL P. MANNIX spent three years in Africa engaged in research for this book. He has written extensively about Africa and animal life.
MALCOLM COWLEY, though known chiefly for his critical writing, began collecting material on the slave trade more than twenty years ago, intending to use it for a book of his own— which led to this collaboration.
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