Story of City's Past Is Written in Stone; INTERNATIONAL SLAVERY MUSEUM EVIDENCE of Liverpool's Slave Trade Past Is All over the City - in Its Architecture, Public Buildings and Street Names. with the International Slavery Museum Due to Open on August 23 Mary Murtagh Brings the City's Links with Human Trafficking into Focus

Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England), August 14, 2007 | Go to article overview

Story of City's Past Is Written in Stone; INTERNATIONAL SLAVERY MUSEUM EVIDENCE of Liverpool's Slave Trade Past Is All over the City - in Its Architecture, Public Buildings and Street Names. with the International Slavery Museum Due to Open on August 23 Mary Murtagh Brings the City's Links with Human Trafficking into Focus


VERY few slaves actually passed through Liverpool.

But the slave trade made the city rich and powerful leaving a permanent mark for generations to come.

From the grand houses built using slave money to the street names we all take for granted there are clues everywhere.

During the 18th century Liverpool was Britain's main slaving port and formed one corner of the "slave triangle".

Ships from the Mersey's shores took at least 1.5 million Africans across the Atlantic destined to work on plantations in the Caribbean and America's deep South.

The city thrived doing ship repairs and importing goods with approximately half of Liverpool's trade linked to slavery.

The movers and shakers among slave traders were immortalised with streets named after them.

Many of these historical markers survive to this day

1. Gildart St

NAMED after Richard Gildart who was a slave trader and a politician. He was listed among the Company of Merchants trading to Africa in 1752.

At that time he owned three ships involved in the slave trade. Gildart served on the town council, was mayor three times, a bailiff and MP for the town from 1734 to 1754.

2. Rodney St

BUILT between about 1782 and 1801 this street provided homes for many of Liverpool's elite merchants and the buildings still reflect that wealth.

It was named after Admiral Rodney who defeated the French in St Lucia on 1782 to preserve British influence in the West Indies. Rodney supported the slave trade. John Gladstone, father of prime minister William Ewart Gladstone, lived on Rodney Street.

He made his wealth through the sugar plantations in Demerara and Jamaica.

3. Bold St

NAMED after Jonas Bold, a noted slave merchant, sugar trader and banker. In 1802 Bold became Mayor of Liverpool.

4. The Athenaeum

FOUNDED in 1799 as a gentlemen's club, library and reading room by a group which included abolitionists William Roscoe and James Currie.

5. Tarleton St

NAMED after a vigorous slaving family in Liverpool for over three generations.

Three of John Tarleton's sons were involved in the trade between 1786 and 1788 and had shares in 52 slaving voyages. The fourth son Banastre was an MP and an opponent of abolition.

6. Park Lane

MANY merchants' warehouses were situated in this area. Charles Roe & Company, in nearby Sparling Street, was founded in 1767 and supplied copper and brass goods and equipment, including manillas, for trading in Africa.

Many black seamen lived in the area in the nineteenth century.

7. Albert Dock

THE new International Slavery Museum covers slavery's past and will look to the future. …

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Story of City's Past Is Written in Stone; INTERNATIONAL SLAVERY MUSEUM EVIDENCE of Liverpool's Slave Trade Past Is All over the City - in Its Architecture, Public Buildings and Street Names. with the International Slavery Museum Due to Open on August 23 Mary Murtagh Brings the City's Links with Human Trafficking into Focus
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