728 x 90

Cultural history at Slave Museum, Calabar

Cultural history at Slave Museum, Calabar
Photo by Ei'eke- Ask Nigeria

The museum was a major embarkation port of the African Slave Trade.

Cross Rivers State is one of Nigeria’s prime tourist destinations. Its flora and fauna consist of lush green trees and vegetation, dew-covered hills, and a cool tropical climate. Home to many resorts and tourist attractions, it is located on the southern coast of Nigeria. In the capital city, Calabar, the vitality of the port city is depicted by a bronze statue of a fisherman with his hook in the mouth of a fish. However, the waterways also speak of a dark history. Nobel Laureate Derek Walcott (1930-2017) articulates it well when he wrote that “The sea is History.”

During the Trans-Atlantic Trade that began in the early 15th century, the Calabar River served as a transit point for slave traders. The riverfront is now occupied by a resort, including attractions such as a cinema and a waterside bar. Close to the river, the Slave History Museum is erected in a rectangular building. The museum re-presents the history of about 200,000 Africans that were sold as slaves from Calabar between the 1600s and the 1800s. It was established in 2007 and commissioned on March 17, 2011.

It is directly managed by the NCMM though Cross River State’s initiative.

Although the idea for the establishment of the museum as a tourist center was solely that of the Cross River State’s initiative, the museum is directly managed by the National Commission for Museums and Monuments (NCMM) to boost the tourism potential in the state. The museum possesses artistic objects, but it is also an ethnographic museum with permanent exhibitions. The museum once served as a holding cell (or barracoon) for captured slaves. According to locals, traders starved slaves for days so they could fit into the slave boat.

The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade involved European merchants who came into the region with gifts, such as gin bottles, guns and wooden mirrors, for the leaders of the local people. In turn, the leaders gave the slave buyers access to their people. Also, powerful and influential people offered slaves for sale at markets like the one in nearby Akpabuyo town called the Esuk Mba Slave Market. People still gather there today every Saturday to barter goods as a symbol of remembrance. Slave trading in the city relied heavily on slave raiding and trading which were carried out mainly in the hinterland. The enslaved were largely war captives or those who have been sold by parents in the hopes that they find greener pastures elsewhere.

One of the museum displays is a slave boat replica.

Museum displays a replica of a slave boat which was used during the Slave Trade. The two lowest levels of the boat contain life-size archetypes of captured slaves lying together as if sandwiched on a shelf with their hands and feet chained. The top deck of a slave boat might have held barrels of palm oil and boxes of garlic and other spices. The items serve as reimbursement for the financial losses from slaves who fell sick and died, or who were cast into the sea when the boat faced rough weather. The merchants took a 30-minute boat ride down the Calabar River to the Atlantic Ocean before they sailed for four to six months to transport their human cargo to the Americas.

An exhibition in the museum features objects of and from the slave trade, which include chains and shackles. Slave traders (both sellers and buyers) used shackles to control their slaves. With the help of chains, the merchants discouraged resistance from the slaves as they carried as many people as possible over very long distances. The artifacts included various restraints used on the slaves. They were also yoked together in shackles so that if one of them tries to run away, the others are affected and pull him back.

Also includes other exhibitions on procurement and abolition.

The exhibition on the Procurement of Slaves depicts the varied currencies of the slave trade: copper bars, manilas, dane guns, brass bells, gongs, flutes and more. The Shipment of Slaves, another exhibition, displays an artistic impression of the arrangement of slaves in a ship. Finally, an exhibition on Abolition traces the efforts of abolitionists such as William Wilberforce, Thomas Clarkson, and Granville Sharp, who saw slave trade as morally reprehensible and an issue of natural rights. A British Act for the abolition of the slave trade on March 25, 1807 mandated that from and after May 1, 1807, the slave trade should be legally abolished. The museum is opened every day of the week including public holidays.


Related Links

Slavery and Remembrance: Website   World: Website   Wikipedia: Website

The content on AskNigeria.com is given for general information only and does not constitute a professional opinion, and users should seek their own legal/professional advice. There is data available online that lists details, facts and further information not listed in this post, please complete your own investigation into these matters and reach your own conclusion. AskNigeria.com accepts no responsibility for losses from any person acting or refraining from acting as a result of content contained in this website and/or other websites which may be linked to this website.

Fact Checking Tool – Snopes.com

0 0 votes
Rate This Article
20 comments
20 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Admin
1
17 days ago

Cultural history at Slave Museum, Calabar – The museum was a major embarkation port of the African Slave Trade. – Express your point of view.

Member
8
17 days ago

Cultural history at slave museum in Calabar reflect where the country is coming from and what has happened in the pass. The museum gives us a picture of how slave trade is done in the pass. It is a place what visiting and a place of tourism.

Member
8
17 days ago

One of the most popular tourist spots in Nigeria is located in the state of Cross Rivers. Its flora and wildlife are composed of verdant trees and vegetation of a beautiful green color.

Member
8
17 days ago

The Calabar Slave museum gave a clear cultural historical background of how slavery and slave trades was been conducred during this period. The museum is loaded with historical artifacts. It is place what visiting

Member
8
17 days ago

The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade was conducted by European merchants who brought presents with them when they arrived in the region.

Member
8
17 days ago

Slave traffickers used the Calabar River as a point of transit during the Trans-Atlantic Trade, which began in the early 15th century and continued well into the 18th century.

Member
8
17 days ago

The museum is known for its collection of works of art, but it also serves as an ethnographic museum and features ongoing exhibitions.

Member
8
17 days ago

The majority of persons who were slaves were either war prisoners or children whose parents had sold them in the vain hope that they would be able to live better elsewhere.

Member
8
17 days ago

Another installation called “The Shipment of Slaves” presents a creative interpretation of how slaves would have been packed aboard a ship at the time.

Member
8
17 days ago

Reading this makes me feel a lot of sadness, so they were also chained together so that if one of them tried to escape, the others would feel it and bring him back. Reading this makes me feel really sad.

Member
8
17 days ago

The Calabar Slave Museum provided a clear cultural and historical context for how slavery and the slave trade were practiced at the time. There are many historical objects at the museum. It is a location worth going to.

Abusi
Member
8
17 days ago

The slave museum is a thing of cultural history. It allows us to know what happened with us during the slave trade, so that we won’t forget our history and how the slave trade affected us.

Member
8
17 days ago

Reading this alone is so heart breaking what a lot of people suffered back in the day. The slave trade era was indeed a traumatic experience, a nightmare

Member
8
17 days ago

The museum possesses artistic objects. It was as a result of the idea for the establishment of the museum as a tourist center by crossriver state initiatives and been well managed by the (NCMM).

Member
8
16 days ago

The museum show us about the past how slave trade go down in history of the country it will help to learn how the country goes about slave trade in the past

Member
8
16 days ago

A clear cultural and historical backdrop for how slavery and the slave trade were practiced at the period was supplied by the Calabar Slave Museum. The museum houses a large collection of historical items. It is a place worth visiting.

Member
9
16 days ago

Cultural history at Slave Museum, Calabar. History of pain and agony that is what i call it. Africans suffered so much in slavery in the past yet our government still want us to suffer in this present generation. Why

Member
8
16 days ago

The exhibits at the Calabar Slave Museum provide a rich cultural and historical context for understanding slavery and the slave trade in the region during that time. Numerous artifacts from the past are on display in the museum. You should definitely pay them a visit.

Member
8
16 days ago

Most slaves were either captured combatants or kids whose families sold them in the hopeless expectation of better lives elsewhere.

Member
8
16 days ago

Slavery and the slave trade were contextualized through the Calabar Slave Museum. Many historical items are at the museum. It’s worth visiting.

0 0 votes
Rate This Article