The Transatlantic Slave Activist

By: Jasmine D.

"We cannot suppose therefore that God has made an order of beings, with such mental qualities and powers, for the sole purpose of being used as beasts, or instruments of labour." ~Thomas Clarkson

Thomas Clarkson was a brilliant man and an influential leader in the abolitionist movement. He worked tirelessly interviewing more than 20,000 people against slavery and gathering and 'collecting items he kept in a special box'. " Clarkson boarded hundreds of ships and rode nearly 35,000 miles from town to town, to obtain information of the conditions aboard African slave ships. His work as an activist began because he was horrified of the treatment of slaves in the process of Transatlantic Slave Trade. He thought it was unjustified how slaves are bought and sold as belongings and treated as "beasts or instruments of labor". With all the propaganda he collected, Thomas made public speeches persuading his listeners to acknowledge the cruelty of slavery. Thomas Clarkson's hard-working piece in the Abolitionist Movement contributes to the continuation of American Democracy .
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The Anti Slavery Society Convention is one of the many events Thomas Clarkson moved and tried to persuade his listeners to abolish slavery. He stressed the inhuman treatment of the Africans during Transatlantic Slave Trade.

Thomas Clarkson's Objectives

  1. Uncover the truth about the trade and conditions on the ships
  2. Challenge the negative, misinformed view of Africans owned by many British people at the time
  3. Challenge claims of the benefits of trade
  4. Demonstrate the humane trading links that could be established, that would benefit both sides
  5. Overall, he wanted freedom for Africans