Instant digital integration through QR codes makes it possible to link exhibits in galleries directly with their wider-world context beyond the gallery space. This provides a radically new and effective technology for museums of all sizes, rare book libraries, map collections and special collections of all descriptions to develop powerful new ways of expanding their audience and design the public education component of their outreach work.
For a discussion of the particular gallery technique used in the Harvard HDS Group Exhibit, see:
- [excerpt of: ] From Gallery to Reality (… and Back): The Display of Art and the Art of Display in the Digital Age
For “Virtual Reality” (VR) “walk-around” views linked to specific slave-trade castles in exhibit and in the African Historical Graphics Archive:
Fort James, the Gambia:
The Gambia – James Island Fort 2- Michel du Chesne
The Gambia – James Island Fort 3 – Michel du Chesne
The Gambia – James Island Fort 4 – Michel du Chesne
The Gambia – James Island Fort 5 – Michel du Chesne
The Gambia – James Island Fort 6 – Michel du Chesne
Gorée Island, Dakar, Senegal:
- Gorée Island, Dakar, Senegal – 4 – Michel du Chesne
- Gorée Island, Dakar, Senegal – 5 – Michel du Chesne
- Gorée Island, Dakar, Senegal – 7 – Michel du Chesne
- Gorée Island, Dakar, Senegal – 8 – Michel du Chesne
- Mapping the Slave Trade, 1556-1823: An International Online Digital Map Archive for Reference, Research and Teaching in African and American History.
as well as:
Elmina Castle, Elmina, Ghana
Individual objects prepared for this display within the group exhibit Footprints Across Time include:
- Vue de la Côte depuis Mina jusqu’au Maure, tirée de Barbot et de Smith…
- Dress of the Female Inhabitants of Whidah on the Gold Coast
- Botanical drawings of Whidah Pease, The Cotton Tree, the Maniok Root and the Potato
- Plan of James Island in the Gambra, 1732
- Negros of Kachao & Bissao preparing the Maniok Root
- Vue et Description des Forts que les Hollandois, Anglais et Danois ont sur la Côte de Guinée…
Other prints prepared for the exhibit but not displayed include:
- “A. Fishing Cannoes of Mina 5 or 600 at a time…”
- [A botanical diagram of fruits, including cacao]
- A Pholey Town and Plantations about it from Moore.
- Postlethwayte – A New and Correct Map of the Coast of Africa, 1753.
See discussion of the techniques and digital technologies used in this approach to historical research in:
For further subjects related to the Atlantic trade and its long-term ecological impact see:
- “Agents of Empire: Steps Toward an Ecology of Imperialism” (1987)
- Mapping the Slave Trade: 1556-1823 – A Digital Humanities Project
- Written in Stone: The Silent and Eerie Eloquence of Stone Structures in the Atlantic Trade
- Archivists race to digitize slavery records before the history is lost | Public Radio International
- Drawing the Wrong Conclusions – An Anthropologist Looks at History: Cultural Mistakes Since 1492 – The “Frontier” Metaphor & the Myth of Endless Growth
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Important related online resources include:
- Afriterra – The Cartographic Free Library
This is an online research and reference facility of for digital access to historical maps and other primary source materials relating to the study of Africa and its role in the world history from the late early-modern period through the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
- Slave Voyages
This is the most extensive international initiative for the systematic study of he slave trade in the digital age. It has been undertaken by coordinated teams of historians, demographers, and social scientists that were funded from a series of research grants over the years. The project is now hosted at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. Data from the project in the “Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade Database” currently contains records on over 36,000 individual slaving expeditions between 1514 and 1866, and it has been made accessible in various formats on the Internet.
This digital memorial raises questions about the largest slave trades in history and offers access to the documentation available to answer them. European colonizers turned to Africa for enslaved laborers to build the cities and extract the resources of the Americas. They forced millions of mostly unnamed Africans across the Atlantic to the Americas, and from one part of the Americas to another. Analyze these slave trades and view interactive maps, timelines, and animations to see the dispersal in action.