Sleeping Positions of Captive Africans on the French Slave Ship Aurore, 1784

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This record was last updated on 16 Mar 2017

Image Reference

Jean Boudriot, Traite et Navire Negrier, Collection Archeologie Navale Francaise (Paris 1984), p. 87.

Boudriot’s artistic interpretation of the "spoon" position, a form of “tight packing” forced on enslaved Africans during the Middle Passage. “Tight packing” was done by slave traders in order to maximize the number of captives that could transported across the Atlantic. The Aurore sailed from La Rochelle in 1784, acquired about 500 Africans in West Central Africa and sold its captives in Saint Domingue. Boudriot's description of this drawing and how he conjectured the space available to the enslaved is on pp. 86. 88. See also image E013.