William Wilberforce

The abolitionists.

The Museum

Due to Williams heroic actions, there is now a museum about him and his timeline, taking you through the different periods in his life. The museum was William Wilberforce's birthplace and his former home before it became a museum.
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Introducing you to William.

William Wilberforce was born on the 24th of August 1759 in a place called Hull. He was the son of an affluent merchant or tradesman. When he studied at University he met a man called William Pitt, who was destined to become Prime Minister. The both became very good lifelong friends.

When William left University he soon became elected as a member of Parliament for his hometown, Hull.

From there on, he would never have the same easy life again.

His role in history.

William was a very important role in history because without him and his strong will the slave trade would have gone on longer. William and others had a strong influence over other members of the public about their beliefs.

The trade triangle.

The trade triangle was a triangular trio of journeys of the slave trade.


  1. Textiles and manufactured goods were shipped to Africa.
  2. Then the African slaves were taken from Africa to the West Indies.
  3. Sugar, cotton, and tobacco were brought back to Europe from the West Indies.


The triangle went on.

William's role in the abolition movement.

William Wilberforce and others were campaigning for a prohibition of the slave trade.

The business was a trade of black, African slaves. White British men took the slaves to the West Indies to be bought and sold. Wilberforce tried to persuade people that this trade was immoral. One human being selling another was very wrong. His work was endless. For 18 years he kept introducing anti-slavery motions into Parliament to stop the trade. in 1796 he thought he was going to defeat Parliament and sign the bill to prevent slave trade, but was beaten by a mere 4 votes. Until finally he got is way in 1807. However the movement was still not over. Although the trade was banned from shipping slaves over, it had no effect on the slaves who were already employed. They had to keep on working. So William kept on fighting to free the already bought slaves.

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William's Methods

The Abolitionists tried to get everyone to notice their case. They had pamphlets with pictures and quotes from eye witnesses. They tried very hard to get the people on their side. William persistently kept going with his campaign, and tried to win Parliament over, because of his deep committed beliefs to the cause and his strong beliefs about the slave trade. In the 18 years William slowly wore people down, by convincing more and more people, until he finally passed the act. On a personal level, he was a kind, honest person. He was a conviction politician and his consistant beliefs gave him influence over others. People started thinking that he was a good man, and that they should trust him.
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William Wilberforce's Historical Significance.

  • He made people trust him, this meant it would be easier for him to win against Parliament.
  • He spent years trying to get coloured people's human rights back to what they should be.
  • He was a focal point in the public eye in the slave trade, and a spokes person in Parliament.
  • Without him, the slave trade would have gone on for a much longer amount out time.
  • He stopped one way of earning lots of money in England, however he stopped an inhumane trade.
  • It made society re-think it's values towards other human beings.
  • He founded the committee for the abolition of slavery.
  • Through this he led the first mass protest campaign.