Daily Archives: July 10, 2022

The Last Slave Ships: New York and the End of the Middle Passage: John Harris

A stunning behind the curtain look into the last years of the illegal transatlantic slave trade in the United States

Long after the transatlantic slave trade was officially outlawed in the early nineteenth century by every major slave trading nation, merchants based in the United States were still sending hundreds of illegal slave ships from American ports to the African coast. The key instigators were slave traders who moved to New York City after the shuttering of the massive illegal slave trade to Brazil in 1850. These traffickers were determined to make lower Manhattan a key hub in the illegal slave trade to Cuba. In conjunction with allies in Africa and Cuba, they ensnared around 200,000 African men, women, and children during the 1850s and 1860s. John Harris explores how the U.S. government went from ignoring, and even abetting, this illegal trade to helping to shut it down completely in 1867.


Winner, Book of the Year 2020, New York Victorian Society
“A remarkable piece of scholarship, sophisticated yet crisply written, and deserves the widest possible audience.”– Eric Herschthal, The New Republic

“What makes his book so valuable is [Harris’s] ability to use this last dark era of the slave trade as a window onto a much wider world of international diplomacy, imperial arrogance, criminal conspiracy, financial shenanigans, and political conflict. . . This is a small book about big things. . . Harris is that rare historian who revels in complexity and contradiction and yet manages to also write a clear and gripping narrative.” — James Oakes, New York Review of Books

“Smoothly written, well-researched … illuminates an often forgotten yet crucially important chapter in US history … Timely.” — Gerald Horne, The Nation

“Brilliant”– Calvin Schermerhorn, Journal of American History

“Uncovers an important–and littleknown–aspect of both New York City history and the history of theillegal slave trade to Cuba.”–Erin Becker, Global Maritime History

“[An] engrossing discussion of the closing days of the Atlantic Slave trade.”–Bob Cary, Metropole, Blog of the Urban History Association
“Fascinating … The Last Slave Ships is a model for scholars who wish to place the U.S. Civil War within a broader international context.”–Jonathan White, The Civil War Monitor

“Engrossing … astonishingly well-documented … highly recommended for U.S. Middle Period, African American, and Civil War historians, and all general readers.”– Library Journal (starred review)

“Harris … construct[s] a convincing and original argument in clear and concise prose … . [His] fine book synthesizes the latest scholarship on the transatlantic slave trade and adds critical insight into how global capital markets, geopolitics, transnational criminal syndicates, and international espionage rings operated and exerted influence on U.S. events throughout the Civil War period.”– David T. Dixon, Emerging Civil War

“Harris does an excellent job of explaining how the Cuban sugar industry operated, acquired enslaved Africans through connections on the West African coast, financed expansion through American businesses, especially New York banks, and marketed its products… [His book is] an important contribution to both local history and to our understanding of United States complicity with slavery and the trans-Atlantic slave trade.”– Alan J. Singer, New York Almanack “Harris uncovers the untold story of Lower Manhattan as one of the last hubs of the transatlantic slave trade in the age of steamships, telegrams and daily newspapers. Set against a background of secessionist politics, British spies, and international diplomacy, the author elegantly tracks the last sixteen years of the traffic and offers a new interpretation of why it came to an end. This page-turner combines first rate scholarship with a clear and compelling argument.” — David Eltis, co-author of Atlas of the Transatlantic Slave Trade

“With startling detail and crisp prose, Harris exposes an international ring of human traffickers based in Lower Manhattan during the final years of the transatlantic slave trade. Today, as the United States scrutinizes the roots of anti-black racism and the traumatic legacies of slavery, The Last Slave Ships reveals new dimensions of U.S. complicity in the twinned history of global capital and chattel slavery.” — Sharla Fett, author of Recaptured Africans: Surviving Slave Ships, Detention, and Dislocation in the Final Years of the Slave Trade
“Brilliant and strikingly original. An important addition to the literature on the U.S. involvement in the illegal slave trade with major implications for our understanding of the larger conduct of that traffic throughout the Atlantic world.” — Randy J. Sparks, Tulane University

John Harris is assistant professor of history at Erskine College.

Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Yale University Press (November 24, 2020)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 312 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0300247338
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0300247336
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 1.5 pounds
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 5.5 x 0.75 x 8.5 inches

The French and Indian War: A Captivating Guide to the North American Conflic t between Great Britain and France along with Its Impact on the History of … and the Seven Years’ War

Most people have heard about the French and Indian War, but you will find that most history classes have “forgotten” to explore some of the most interesting and important facets of this conflict. Its little-told stories and often underrated importance in world history have begun to be buried over the centuries. Was this epic struggle simply another war among many others in history?

Many of the incredible details, stories of legendary heroism, and actual world-changing events have not been given their moment to shine. The French and Indian War was not only about armed battles. It was also an extraordinary story of two empires with long-standing grudges that spilled over into the New World. This clash of titan-like powers shaped the fates of millions of people, numerous tribes, and multiple nations.

Even if you are not a military history “buff,” you will be absorbed in the captivating and shocking aspects of this incredible story, such as:

  • Which well-known political leader in history inadvertently began the war in North America
  • Which empires battled for control of North America and how beaver pelts caused tensions to boil over
  • Why the native tribes formed alliances with those encroaching on their land and how it changed the course of their future forever
  • The fascinating cultural differences between the Europeans and the Native Americans and how they viewed war, peace, and relationships with their new “neighbors”
  • The man who founded the US Army Rangers and how he became an Adirondack legend
  • The near-mythical “Black Watch”
  • How the war played in a much larger global struggle between imperial powers
  • How this war created an atmosphere ripe for one of history’s most famous revolutions
  • And how the seeds were sown for new nations to emerge
  • Publisher‏ : ‎ Captivating History (February 12, 2022)
  • Language‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback‏ : ‎ 140 pages
  • ISBN-10‏ : ‎ 1637165811
  • ISBN-13‏ : ‎ 978-1637165812
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 7.8 ounces
  • Dimensions‏ : ‎ 6 x 0.32 x 9 inches

Burkina Faso’s interim leadership hosts talks on country’s future

Jul 10, 2022

Burkina Faso’s interim president Paul-Henri Damiba, on Friday, brought together the country’s former heads of state. The unprecedented meeting in Ougadougou was to discuss the future of the country, amid escalating extremist violence. Five former presidents were invited, but only two were in attendance at the meeting. As the efforts continue, CGTN’s Mahia Mutua explored Burkina Faso’s future with Paul Ejime, a Global Affairs Expert.

May Day at Yale,1970: Recollections: The Trial of Bobby Seale and the Black Panthers: Chauncey, Henry “Sam”, John T. Hill, ., Thomas Strong, , Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

This book comes from first hand experiences, both in word and in pictures. It offers a partial record of a community and an institution coming together to accommodate an event while deflecting its potential violence. The history of the New Haven Green bridges over four centuries. It has served as a place for worship, for grazing cattle, staging revolutions, witness to hangings, and various campaigns.

On the day before and on May Day of 1970, Yale University and New Haven prepared to host an agitated congregation of young civil rights activists with a diverse list of causes, but focused mainly on freeing Bobby Seale, the Black Panther leader. This book gives a glimpse of that diversity; diverse in cause, attitude, and dress. Marked changes in mood evolved over the approximate 32 hours. Yale and New Haven could be proud of avoiding real violence and blood shed.

Like an archeological record, it exhibits not only the New Haven Green on that one day, but marks a broader shift in direction for a county at large. For those who were there, it seems painfully near. For later generations, it is likely a remote abstraction.

About the Author

Henry Chauncey, Jr., known as “Sam”, was born in 1935. He graduated from Yale College in 1957. He worked in various administrative capacities at Yale from 1957 to 1982. He then was founding CEO of Science Park Development Corporation in New Haven; subsequently President and CEO of Gaylord Hospital in Wallingford, Connecticut and finally Lecturer and Head of the Health Management Program in the Yale School of Public Health. He is retired and resides in New Haven.

Professor and educator Henry Louis “Skip” Gates Jr. was born on September 16, 1950, in Keyser, West Virginia. Gates excelled as a student, graduating from Yale University in 1973 with a degree in history. He continued his education at Clare College, which is part of the University of Cambridge in England. He finished his doctorate degree in 1979, making him the first African-American to receive a Ph.D. from the university.

In the 1980s, Gates became known as a leading scholar of African-American literature, history, and culture. At the start of the decade, he began working on the Black Periodical Literature Project, which uncovered lost literary works published in 1800s. Gates received a grant from the prestigious MacArthur Foundation in 1981, which helped support his scholarship in African-American literature.

In 1991, Gates became the head of the African-American studies department at Harvard University. He is credited with transforming the school’s African American studies program. Gates is now the director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African-American Research at the university.

Gates served an editor on several anthologies and collections of African-American literature and contributed to the field of literary theory with such works as Black Literature and Literary Theory (1984) and The Signifying Monkey: Towards a Theory of Afro-American Literary Criticism (1988). In 1991, Gates became the head of the African-American studies department at Harvard University. He is credited with transforming the school’s African American studies program. Gates is now the director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African-American Research at the university.

John T. Hill holds MFA degrees from both the University of Georgia and Yale. He taught at Yale for nineteen years, becoming its first director of graduate studies in photography. In 1975, on the death of his friend, Walker Evans, he became executor of that estate. After leaving Yale, he has designed and authored a number of books and exhibitions.

Thomas Strong has a BA from Dartmouth and a degree in graphic design from Yale School of Art and Architecture. Walker Evans was his principle instructor in photography. Since 1968, he and Marjorie C. Gordon have directed the design firm Strong Cohen on Chapel Street in New Haven.

Start reading May Day at Yale, 1970 on your Kindle in under a minute.

  • Publisher‏ : ‎ Prospecta Press; Reprint edition (March 22, 2016)
  • Language‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback‏ : ‎ 120 pages
  • ISBN-10‏ : ‎ 1632260662
  • ISBN-13‏ : ‎ 978-1632260666
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 1.72 pounds
  • Dimensions‏ : ‎ 10.75 x 0.5 x 10.75 inches