Dreams of Africa in Alabama The Slave Ship Clotilda and the Story of the Last Africans Brought to America

ISBN-10: 0195382935
ISBN-13: 9780195382938
Edition: 2009
List price: $20.95 Buy it from $19.09
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Description: In the summer of 1860, more than fifty years after the United States legally abolished the international slave trade, 110 men, women, and children from Benin and Nigeria were brought ashore in Alabama under cover of night. They were the last  More...

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Book details

List price: $20.95
Copyright year: 2009
Publisher: Oxford University Press, Incorporated
Publication date: 2/18/2009
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 352
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.00" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 1.430
Language: English

In the summer of 1860, more than fifty years after the United States legally abolished the international slave trade, 110 men, women, and children from Benin and Nigeria were brought ashore in Alabama under cover of night. They were the last recorded group of Africans deported to the United States as slaves. Timothy Meaher, an established Mobile businessman, sent the slave ship, the Clotilda , to Africa, on a bet that he could "bring a shipful of niggers right into Mobile Bay under the officers' noses." He won the bet. This book reconstructs the lives of the people in West Africa, recounts their capture and passage in the slave pen in Ouidah, and describes their experience of slavery alongside American-born enslaved men and women. After emancipation, the group reunited from various plantations, bought land, and founded their own settlement, known as African Town. They ruled it according to customary African laws, spoke their own regional language and, when giving interviews, insisted that writers use their African names so that their families would know that they were still alive. The last survivor of the Clotilda died in 1935, but African Town is still home to a community of Clotilda descendants.

Sylviane A. Diouf is an award-winning historian of the African Diaspora. She is the author of  Slavery’s Exiles: The Story of the American Maroons  and  Servants of Allah: African Muslims Enslaved in the Americas , both with NYU Press. The fifteenth anniversary edition of Servants of Allah —named Choice Outstanding Academic Book in 1999—will be released in October 2013. Her book  Dreams of Africa in Alabama: The Slave Ship Clotilda and the Story of the Last Africans Brought to America  received the 2007 Wesley-Logan Prize of the American Historical Association, the 2009 Sulzby Award of the Alabama Historical Association and was a finalist for the 2008 Hurston/Wright Legacy Award. She is the editor of  Fighting the Slave Trade: West African Strategies  and the co-editor of  In Motion: The African-American Migration Experience . A recipient of the Rosa Parks Award, the Dr. Betty Shabazz Achievement Award, and the Pen and Brush Achievement Award, Diouf is a Curator at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture of the New York Public Library.

Acknowledgments
Introduction
Known Africans Deported to Mobile on the Clotilda
Mobile and the Slave Trades
West African Origins
Ouidah
Arrival in Mobile
Slavery
Freedom
African Town
Between Two Worlds
Going Back Home
Epilogue
Appendix: The Numbers of the Illegal Slave Trade
An Essay on Sources
Notes
Bibliography
Index

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