"An Immediate and Universal Abolition of that Abominable Traffic the African Slave-Trade" [Manuscript]. [Slavery]. [Great Britain]. Requisition to the Mayor for Common Hall Respecting Slave Trade [Docket Title]. Rochester, Kent, July 4, 1814. 2 pp. 8-3/4" x 7-1/4" bifolium, text in copperplate script to first page followed by 28 autograph signatures and date, docket to verso. Light toning, soiling and a few faint stains, horizontal and vertical fold lines, corners folded, small holes and clean tears starting along fold lines, no loss to text. An interesting document. $1,650. * The French slave trade was effectively ended during the Napoleonic Wars because of British blockades of French ships. Following Napoleon's defeat in 1814, British anti-slavery activists realized that the end of the blockade would mean the resumption of the slave trade, which had been abolished in Great Britain in 1807. Activists quickly mobilized to petition the government to use their leverage at the Congress of Vienna to force the abolition of the slave trade in France. The movement drew wide support. Some 1,370 petitions were produced in 1814, signed by up to between one-fifth and one-third of adult men (Huzzey). Our document is a request to the mayor of Rochester to "call a Meeting of the Inhabitants of the City & its neighbourhood to consider the propriety of petitioning Parliament or adopting such measures as may seem fit to obtain an immediate and universal abolition of that abominable traffic the African Slave-trade." It is signed by 28 inhabitants of the city. Huzzey, "The Congress of Vienna and Abolition of the Slave Trade" (accessed online).
Book number 75209