Remembrance day for the slave trade and its abolition

The National Maritime Museum is hosting a day of remembrance on the anniversary of the first successful slave uprising in the western hemisphere – on 23 August in Haiti in 1791.

Although the Lenox was a warship and not directly involved in the slave trade, the dockyard where she was built was inextricably linked to this abhorrent business. As well as playing a vital role in exploration, naval history and the development of new technologies, Deptford docks was the place where many slave ships were built, repaired, or started or ended their journeys.

The event – this Friday 23 August at the National Maritime Museum – will explore the Museum’s vast collections relating to the trade of enslaved people, as well as focusing on the many local connections to be found in the Greenwich World Heritage Site. One of the special events is a walk around Greenwich led by Lenox supporter, author and historian SI Martin (an advisor to Build The Lenox), who will reveal the hidden impact of the transatlantic slave trade during a walk around Greenwich.

Art historian and creative educator Dr Temi Odumosu will explore the themes and attitudes of George Cruickshank’s The New Union Club, which is considered one of the most racist and complex prints of the 19th Century.

Critically acclaimed composer Dominique LeGendre will discuss the impact and work of influential black composers during the period of enslavement, including the celebrated Ignatius Sancho.

Storyteller Rich Sylvester will lead interactive family learning tours around Greenwich Park, exploring Ignatius Sancho’s early life. Starting at Yinka Shonibare MBE’s eminent Nelson’s Ship in a Bottle, the tour concludes at The Ranger’s House, and with a ceremony investigating the importance of names. Young people are invited to leave their names in remembrance.

Full programme details are at the National Maritime Museum website.

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