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Sun May 17, 2020, 04:05 PM

Better late than never to discover this:

History of Cartagena, Colombia: Spanish America’s Biggest Slave Port
By Tracy -July 4, 2015236335

Far too many people are unaware that the Spanish Americas received countless millions of chained African men, women and children during the Maafa. Too often when we think of African slavery in the Americas we are hoodwinked into channeling our focus toward the British North American colonies, Portuguese Brazil the British West Indies or the sovereign Black man’s pearl of Haiti.

There is another place though. One you probably have not studied about. As a matter of fact in the Western hemisphere there does not exist a port of call in all of Spanish South America, Central America or the Spanish Caribbean that saw more Africans delivered than this vicious port: it is the efficiently evil slaving depot of Cartagena, Colombia.

Over 1.1 million captive Africans entered the docks at Cartagena de las Indias, according to the former director of the Colombian national archives, Jose Palacios Preciado. Not only did they come earlier to Cartagena, but they came in considerably larger numbers than Black people to other locales of the Americas such as the Dutch, British, Danish or French possessions. The Spanish Crown had the system of trafficking African souls down to a grizzly science, and made it their MOST PROFITABLE business according to the governor of Cartagena Province during the 16th century. In his words, he confirms, “the business of Blacks is the largest and the most profitable business we have,” and it would continue to be so along with its auxiliary economic effects for the next two and a half centuries until this vile institution’s end in Colombia on Jan. 1, 1852.

Equally as sinister in the early period of slavery were the perilous sister ports of Veracruz, Mexico, and Portobelo, Panama. These two scurrilous locales’ steadily active wharves of disembarkation preceded Cartagena in the heinous business of landing newly arrived captive Africans – bozales as they were called, meaning “wild” or “savage.” They were only overtaken by their southern sibling Cartagena in the late 1590s, when the Spanish Crown stepped up their volume of shipping and initiated the asiento contract period of trafficking African people. The asiento contract, promulgated by the Spanish Crown, was a virtual monopoly to supply Africans to the Spanish Americas. By the mid-17th century according to some scholars, more than 300,000 unfortunate ancestors had already been landed on the shores.

Which Africans Were Brought to Cartagena and the Spanish-American Territories?

That depends on which century, which European nation owned the asiento shipping contract at the time, which region of the Americas you are talking about – be it a sugarcane-producing area (cañaveral), a precious metal-mining area (placer or mina), a cattle-ranching area (estancia), a pearl-diving region, an urban or domestic locale, some other destination, or, as recent evidence has uncovered, in many cases the decision as to which Africans were brought may have relied upon which preferences were held by the local proprietors for certain African-based technologies. As such, the case for the latter aided in the detailed use of brand-naming each African captive sent to or through the port of Cartagena – this system of categorizing African people per their expertise and continental region of origin, is known as the casta de nación classification system.


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Reply Better late than never to discover this: (Original post)
Judi Lynn May 2020 OP
niyad May 2020 #1
Judi Lynn May 2020 #2

Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sun May 17, 2020, 04:11 PM

1. Thank you so much for this most informative post.

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Response to niyad (Reply #1)

Sun May 17, 2020, 05:40 PM

2. I was glad to find it! I always thought it would be the US or Brazil until today! Thank you.

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