200th Anniversary of the Abolition; ABOLITION OF SLAVERY

Article excerpt

Birmingham marked the 200th anniversary of the abolition of the transatlantic slave trade yesterday with this spectacular display of music and dance.

The city, which sold chains and guns to slavers in the 18th century, saw Nigerian dancers from the West Midlands Igbo Association and steel pan music from artists Mighty Jamma and Little J at Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery. The event marked the beginning of the Three Continents, One History project, organised by Birmingham's Afro-Caribbean Millennium Centre.

There was also a poetry reading and a talk from Stephen Small, director of African-American studies at University of California, Berkeley. The event at the museum kicks off a year-long celebration by Birmingham to commemorate the anniversary of the abolition of the slave trade, which was banned in the British Empire in 1807.

The Millennium Centre set up the event in partnership with the museum and the Equiano Project.

The project is named after escaped slave Olaudah Equiano, who bought his own freedom after years of trading and saving.

He visited Birmingham in 1790 as part of his lifelong campaign to abolish the slave trade. …