End of slave trade

Architects of their own liberation

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Much has been written about the American Civil War, but less is known about the decisive role of black soldiers in the conflict. Michael Bradley unearths the role of free blacks and escaped slaves whose heroism helped secure victory against the Confederate South and ended slavery.

The American Civil War of 1861-65 was the world's first truly industrial conflict. It saw the mobilisation of huge economic resources and resulted in the death of some 600,000 people. Northern supporters of "free labour" fought the Southern planter elite to decide which system would dominate the country's future.

How African truths abolished British lies

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Toyin Agbetu famously protested against Tony Blair and the queen during the Westminster Abbey slavery commemoration. Here he writes about why he decided not just to sit back and watch.

On 27 March 2007 the three leading institutions of Britain gathered in Westminster Abbey to celebrate their role in what they describe as the abolition of the so called "slave trade". In an act of astonishing arrogance the British church, monarchy and government invited the descendants of both slavers and enslaved Africans to an orgy of hypocritical moral profligacy where they neglected to apologise, or reparate, for having led the crime for centuries before being forced by African freedom fighters to reform it.

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