Generously supported by The Tannahill Fund this promises to be an unmissable session on Scotland role in the Slave Trade.
Scots were involved in every stage of the slave trade: from captaining slaving ships to auctioning captured Africans in the colonies and hunting down those who escaped from bondage. This book focuses on the Scottish Highlanders who engaged in or benefitted from these crimes against humanity in the Caribbean Islands and Guyana, some reluctantly but many with enthusiasm and without remorse. Their voices are clearly heard in the archives, while in the same sources their victims' stories are silenced - reduced to numbers and listed as property.
David Alston’s Slaves and Highlanders gives voice not only to these Scots but to enslaved Africans and their descendants - to those who reclaimed their freedom, to free women of colour, to the Black Caribs of St Vincent, to house servants, and to children of mixed race who found themselves in the increasingly racist society of Britain in the mid-1800s.
Kate Phillips’ Bought and Sold: Slavery, Scotland and Jamaica: Slavery, Scotland and Jamaica traces the story of how and why thousands of Scots made money from buying and selling humans… a story we need to own. We need to admit that many Scots were enthusiastic participants in slavery.
Union with England gave Scotland access to both trade and settlement in Jamaica, Britain’s richest colony and its major slave trading hub. Tens of thousands from Scotland lived and worked there. The abolition campaign and slave revolts threatened Scottish plantation owners, merchants, traders, bankers and insurance brokers who made their fortunes from slave-farmed sugar in Jamaica and fought hard to preserve the system of slavery. Archives and parliamentary papers in both countries reveal these transatlantic Scots in their own words and allow us to access the lives of their captives.