How the North Promoted, Prolonged, and Profited from Slavery


Most people, including this writer, thought that the involvement of the U.S. in the African slave trade ended in 1809, as per the Constitution. 1865 at the very latest, as the War Between The States ended and the stated aim of the U.S. to end slavery, though proclaimed late in the conflict, was supposed to end the American involvement once and for all. Then, we would be wrong.

According to the new book, Complicity: How the North Promoted, Prolonged, and Profited from Slavery – Copyright 2005 by The Hartford Courant, authored by Anne Farrow, Joel Lang, Jenifer Frank – the slave trade between the U.S. and the African colonies of the European countries lasted well into the 20th century VIA the Ivory trade.

Yes, those small keys on the pianos and organs, and billiard balls, as well as carvings and such, caused the death of millions of Africans well into the 20th century. Not to mention the elephants. For as David Livingstone figured out: "Five black people were killed or forced into slavery for each tusk that reached the coast." And this at least from 1870 to 1900. "Henry Stanley’s number is even higher. He says that for every pound of ivory, someone died." Page 209; Complicity. Stanley and Livingstone were two of the premier explorers of their time.

This is another claim that can be laid at the feet of the self-righteous yankee. And this should be hammered on. They have been let off the hook, unjustly, for the longest time. According to the book, yankee companies were the ones who were the major traders in ivory. The book presents the heights of hypocrisy that were the yankees. Such abolitionists as George Read, Julius Pratt, and Richard Waters, the U.S. first consul to the island of Zanzibar, were heavily involved in the ivory trade. And typically, it was a yankee innovation that changed ivory cutting from a human effort to a mechanical effort, thus facilitating the amount of ivory processed. Much like the cotton gin did for cotton.

The book says that it was 1957 when the last American-made keyboards were no longer veneered with ivory, not because of "environmentalism" but because of economics. 1957! Yankees must not be let off the hook any longer. Every chance we get, we must remind them of the legacy of blood, of broken lives both here and abroad that they have wrought.


At Your Service,
I Remain Respectfully,
Jimmy L. Shirley Jr.

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