Latin America - the last frontier of British slaveholding

Latin America - the last frontier of British slaveholding Pic by Johann_Moritz_Rugendas_in_Brazil_2

Punishing slaves in Brazil, by Johann Moritz Rugendas. Photo by Wilfredorof a painting under Public Domain

Professor Chris Evans - thumbnail

Chris Evans, Professor of History at USW, spoke on “British capital and enslaved miners at El Cobre, Cuba, from the 1830s to the 1860s” at Forgotten Histories: Latin America – The Last Frontier of British Slaveholding, a symposium held at Canning House, the London-based Latin American think-tank. 

Evans explained how British investment in copper mining at El Cobre produced what was, by 1840, the largest single slave enterprise in the western hemisphere. This was part of a wider pattern. 

Although slavery was abolished in Britain’s Atlantic empire in the 1830s, capital exports from London supported the headlong spread of slavery in Brazil, Cuba, and the southern states of the USA through the 1840s and 1850s.

Today, this history remains little-researched and for many, seemingly forgotten. 

In this edition of the Forgotten Histories event series, Canning House welcomed a panel of leading academics whose work has focused on this lesser-known period of British slaveholding in Latin America.

You can read more about the work of Professor Chris Evans here.