London: John W. Parker, 1839.
Portrait frontispiece, folding map, folding plan and folding section of the slave ship Brooks. viii, 615, pp., plus 8-pages of ads in the rear. Uncut and partially unopened. 8vo. Publisher's cloth, some fading to spine and board edges, wear at head and tail of spine Item #365072
Clarkson (1760-1846), along with William Wilberforce and Granville Sharp, was instrumental in convincing the British public and Parliament of the moral necessity of abolishing the slave trade. Clarkson's "Essay on the Slavery and Commerce of the Human Species" (1786) galvanized a small group of abolitionists, though they were without political clout until Wilberforce, an MP, publicly took up the cause a year later. A motion for abolition, championed in Parliament by Wilberforce, was defeated in 1791. Not until 1807 did Parliament pass the act abolishing the slave trade. First published in 1808, the title of Clarkson's History was triumphant as it wasn't until 1811 that slave trading would become a felony. The work is famously illustrated with a diagram of the lower hold of the slave ship Brooks, with rows upon rows of nearly 300 enslaved Africans for transport to America. The disturbing image became arguably the most widely-known and influential image of the abolitionist movement. See Cheryl Finley, Committed to Memory: The Art of the Slave Ship Icon (Princeton University Press: 2018)
The present "final" edition, published after the final abolition of West Indian slavery in 1832, and updated with a new preface which recounts the parlimentary debates leading abolition as well as subsequent debates on ending the interim indentured apprenticeship of former slaves and on slavery in Mauritius. A scarce edition, published at a crucial period in the abolition movement in America.
Price: $3,500.00 Free International Delivery