Freetown, Sierra Leone, 1840s-1850s

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This record was last updated on 27 Jun 2017

Image Reference

Drawings of Western Africa (University of Virginia Library, Special Collections, MSS 14357, no. 8).

Ink, watercolor and crayon. A view of Freetown harbor. In the foreground are Euro-American ships, including, on the extreme left, what appears to be a steamship with sails, and some smaller vessels. Three male figures are standing on a stone wharf in the center. Under the central figure, barely visible in this image, is a hand written caption identifying “King Jimmy” (i.e., King Jemmy, the 1790s Temne paramount chief; today the area is known as King Jimmy’s Wharf). A number of the town’s buildings are identified: St. George Cathedral (extreme left; completed ca. 1828); Soldier’s Hospital, Barracks (center); Government Store (right); Liberated Slaves Compound (extreme right; where Africans rescued from slaving vessels were kept for medical attention and until plans could be made for their re-settlement). J. Leighton Wilson, an American Protestant missionary who visited Freetown in 1852, published a virtually identical scene as an engraving in his book, Western Africa (New York 1856), pp. 418, 422. See other image references “UVA” on this site. For background to this and other UVA images, see image reference UVA01.