Slave Coffle, East Africa, 1880s

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Image Reference

The Illustrated London News (March 16, 1889), vol. 94, p. 343.

Although depicting a scene in the East African slave trade, the scene is evocative of coffles in other areas. Captioned "A slave gang in Zanzibar," the setting is actually the East African coast rather than the island of Zanzibar itself, and some of the enslaved Africans with this particular trader came from "beyond Lake Tanganyika . . . months ago." The picture shows captured Africans linked by metal (?) neck collars and chains, carrying baskets of goods, and guarded by an armed Arab slaver. The engraving is based on a sketch furnished by W. A. Churchill, and the brief accompanying article (p. 342) provides a description and harsh criticism of the Arab slave trade.