Slave Coffle, Central Africa, 1874

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This record was last updated on 26 Jan 2015

Image Reference

The Illustrated London News (April 15, 1876), vol. 68, p. 377.

Caption: "Slave Gang Passing Along the Edge of the Lushivi Marsh. From a sketch by Lieutenant Cameron in Central Africa." The engraving is based on a sketch that illustrates a lengthy account (p. 366) of Verney Lovett Cameron's voyage to Africa. Cameron, lauded by the ILN as "one of the most successful of African geographical explorers" had recently returned to England, having left in November 1872 under the auspices of the Royal Geographical Society. He traveled through Central and East Africa in the early 1870s, and witnessed this slave coffle in central Africa around 1874: "the painful march of a slave gang, two or three score wretched women all tied together by knotted ropes, all heavily laden and driven on by the whip . . . . The slaves were kidnapped by a ruffian named Coimbra, a half-caste Portuguese from Bihe"(p. 366). A similar engraving is published in Cameron's Across Africa (Leipzig, 1877), vol. 2, p. 147.