How Slavery Developed

The voyage

Accounts book of a slave ship

The 1774 voyage of the Africa, a Bristol slave ship, carried goods to trade in African valued at £4648 1s 1d. The costs to set up the voyage and buy goods to trade, were £5650 8s 0d. Money received for the sale of the enslaved Africans was £5128 12s 6d.

The African Queen, owned by James Rogers with Captain Samuel Stribling in command, left Bristol in 1792 bound West Africa. Slaves were scarce and he spent months on the coast trying to buy enough. He bought 330, 255 or 213 slaves according to different reports. One report says that 28 of the 255 slaves died during the wait at the coast and 14 died crossing the Atlantic Ocean. Another report says that 98 out of 330 died.

In 1736 the Prince of Orange owned by Richard Farr & Co, and with Captain Japhet Bird in command, sailed for Africa. At least 273 slaves were bought. Some enslaved Africans preferred death to what ever awaited them at the end of the voyage. Of the men 100 jumped overboard near St Kitts and 33 were drowned. …‘more of them were taken up almost drowned, some of them died since, but not the owners loss, they being sold before any discovery of the injury the salt water had done them’.
It was reported that ‘there was a scarcity of sugar for the return cargo’.

With acknowledgements to David Richardson and his work on the shipping involved in the transatlantic trade

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