The most dangerous leg of an Atlantic slave voyage crossed the Atlantic. Many of the enslaved died during the voyage. Survivors faced hardship and humiliation when they returned to the coast of the United States. The captain was preparing for their sale.
In the 18th century, the Middleburg Trade Company (MCC) focused on Atlantic trade among enslaved Africans. The Unity is one of MCC’s ships. In 1762 the Captain of the Unity traveled to the colonies of Perbis, Essex, and the Demeri. These are now part of Guyana west of Suriname.
Arriving at Perbis, a surgeon climbed in from the shore. He tested that there were no infectious diseases like measles. Then fresh vegetables, meat and fruits were brought. It is important for MCC directors that the condition of the enslaved improves rapidly because they will earn more from sales.
Sell for entertainment
The captain arranged the sale. He sold a few directly to the plantation owners. Most of the enslaved were sold by auction. One by one they were put up for sale. The auction was attended by the European people of the colony. For them it was a kind of entertainment, an event where they enjoyed free beer and wine, taps and tobacco.
After the auction, the enslaved became the property of more and more auctioneers, usually the owners of sugar, coffee and tobacco plantations. There, enslaved Africans faced the future as forced laborers. It is also clear from the household goods of the gardens that they belong to someone else; Of the movable property, animals and slaves are listed one after the other.
Want to know more about MCC? Watch episode three of Head Swarte Verleton von Geeland tonight, every hour on TV from 5.13pm on Omrope Geeland. Or visit the Jeeves Archive website for a study file on the slave trade: Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade Zealand Archives.