Global Slavery – An Interesting Map

I’d been told about this pattern before, but this map makes it VERY clear.

A discussion of the history of slavery broke out in the context of the Political Pandering Holiday “JuneTeenth” over in a W.O.O.D. This had some discussion of how it was largely Black Africans impressing their neighbors into slavery (often via tribal war dominance) and then them being sold in many (most?) cases by Muslim Slave Traders. Only once they were at the coast and in a boat were significant numbers of “White Men” involved (and by that time these slaves were already slaves for a while, and often for a long walk to the coast).

Why was this?

Well first off, the Koran lays out the manner and properness of Islamic Slavery. The Koran says it is just fine to be a Muslim slave owner or trader. Second, there had been many generations (perhaps to the depths of pre-history) of slavery by Blacks of Blacks in Africa. If nothing else, the Roman Empire was built on slavery and it had run North Africa as far back as 146 B.C with the conquest of Carthage.

So these folks had at least a 2000 year history of slavery. Then the northern White Europeans started to dominate trade globally as they made the great trade ships and trade routes. As they attempted to colonize the rest of the world, they got into the slave trade.

BUT, tropical areas were chock full of tropical diseases. The average life expectancy of a White Man in Equatorial Africa was about one year, or less. (Per the wiki). So they stayed with their boats or on the coast at the trading stations.

So what White Europeans did was move some of the folks, who were already slaves to other parts of the world, where they were eventually freed in places like North America.

But wait, there’s more…

Looking at Pop Culture you would think it was all English and Americans doing all of the Atlantic Slave Trade and it was all an American Thing, what with the War Between The States and all. But it wasn’t.

First off, the Atlantic Slave shipping was dominated by Portuguese from the very start. MOST of the slaves were landed in the Caribbean on islands or into South America. Only a very very small part were landed in North America.

Yet today, both Brazil and the USA have about the same proportion of Black African population. Ever wonder why? I’ve been told it was due to a difference of perception and costs. In North America, slaves were a dear price and a valuable asset. The Capitalist Ethic was to preserve that asset and, when possible, have it multiply and grow. Yes, slavery is “a horrible institution”, but there’s bad and a whole lot worse… In South America, not only were there a lot more diseases, but slaves were relatively cheap. As a consequence, many were simply worked to death and then more brought in.

Sidebar On Islamic Slavers: In Islamic nations, such as Arabia, they also imported Black African Slaves. BUT, they didn’t want their genes mixing so generally the men were castrated. That’s why there’s not a large ex-slave population in the Arab world…

With that said, let’s look at the map, and the tiny portion landed in North America:

African Slave Trade - Mostly to South America & the Caribbean

African Slave Trade – Mostly to South America & the Caribbean

Link to wiki source:

English: Map of both intercontinental and transatlantic slave trade in Africa
Date 15 February 2021
Source Own work based on Map 1, from Atlas of the Transatlantic Slave Trade (New Haven, 2010)

The original from which it was copied:

THE big takeaway here is just that the bulk of the Slave Trade went everywhere BUT North America. The big difference is that the North American slaves were largely preserved as a living intact population while those in Islamic hands were prevented from procreating and those sent to South America were largely worked to death. (Or so I have been told).

Some documentary bits:

The vast majority of those who were enslaved and transported in the transatlantic slave trade were people from Central and West Africa, who had been sold by other West Africans, or by half-European “merchant princes” to Western European slave traders (with a small number being captured directly by the slave traders in coastal raids), who brought them to the Americas. Except for the Portuguese, European slave traders generally did not participate in the raids because life expectancy for Europeans in sub-Saharan Africa was less than one year during the period of the slave trade (which was prior to the widespread availability of quinine as a treatment for malaria).

If find it a bit funny that even Uber Liberal Left Wing Biased Wiki has to admit the reality that the Slavery of Blacks originated with other Blacks. Europeans just traded in them after the fact.

The Portuguese, in the 16th century, were the first to engage in the Atlantic slave trade. In 1526, they completed the first transatlantic slave voyage to Brazil, and other Europeans soon followed.

Gee… no English nor Americans involved in starting this whole process. But what happened 300 years later, eh?

Then there’s this gem:

The first Africans kidnapped to the English colonies were classified as indentured servants, with a similar legal standing as contract-based workers coming from Britain and Ireland.

A WHOLE LOT of the Irish in America arrived as “Indentured Servants”. Now some idiots want ME to pay “reparations” to OTHER Indentured Servants progeny? How’s that fair to MY Indentured Servant ancestors? Eh?

The major Atlantic slave-trading nations, ordered by trade volume, were the Portuguese, the British, the Spanish, the French, the Dutch, and the Danish. Several had established outposts on the African coast where they purchased slaves from local African leaders.

Note that “American” is not on the list. Nor the Irish. Nor the Germans. WHY ought the German derived peoples of Ohio, for example, be charged with responsibility for that which they did not do? FWIW, over 1/2 the American population can trace some German ancestry. Another HUGE chunk has Irish ancestry.

Don’t try pushing that “White Guilt Trip” on me. My people were not involved in large part. On Mum’s side, it is possible that some Sailor ancestor (3+ generations) might have been worked on a ship on the Middle Passage, but not by choice. Note that they died as fast or faster than the slave cargo.

Atlantic shipment

After being captured and held in the factories, slaves entered the infamous Middle Passage. Meltzer’s research puts this phase of the slave trade’s overall mortality at 12.5%
Despite the vast profits of slavery, the ordinary sailors on slave ships were badly paid and subject to harsh discipline. Mortality of around 20%, a number similar and sometimes greater than those of the slaves, was expected in a ship’s crew during the course of a voyage; this was due to disease, flogging, overwork, or slave uprisings. Disease (malaria or yellow fever) was the most common cause of death among sailors. A high crew mortality rate on the return voyage was in the captain’s interests as it reduced the number of sailors who had to be paid on reaching the home port.

The slave trade was hated by many sailors, and those who joined the crews of slave ships often did so through coercion or because they could find no other employment.

So basically the slaves on the ship were less at risk of death than the crew. Slaves had value and were an asset, crew were a cost center / liability.

So tell me again why my English Grunt Sailor ancestors (often pressed into service against their will ala Shanghaied, and frequently not paid either – essentially also slaves) ought to be charged with this evil?

Then just to note that this was NOT a new process and my Roman reference is valid:

European slavery in Portugal and Spain

By the 15th century, slavery had existed in the Iberian Peninsula (Portugal and Spain) of Western Europe throughout recorded history. The Roman Empire had established its system of slavery in ancient times. Since the Fall of the Western Roman Empire, various systems of slavery continued in the successor Islamic and Christian kingdoms of the peninsula through the early modern era of the Atlantic slave trade.

So you can blame Britain and America for ENDING a system of slavery with at least a 2000 year history.

End of the Atlantic slave trade
Main article: Abolitionism
See also: Blockade of Africa

William Wilberforce (1759–1833), politician and philanthropist who was a leader of the movement to abolish the slave trade.

In Britain, America, Portugal and in parts of Europe, opposition developed against the slave trade. David Brion Davis says that abolitionists assumed “that an end to slave imports would lead automatically to the amelioration and gradual abolition of slavery”.[ In Britain and America, opposition to the trade was led by members of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers), Thomas Clarkson and establishment Evangelicals such as William Wilberforce in Parliament. Many people joined the movement and they began to protest against the trade, but they were opposed by the owners of the colonial holdings. Following Lord Mansfield’s decision in 1772, many abolitionists and slave-holders believed that slaves became free upon entering the British isles. However, in reality slavery continued in Britain right up to abolition in the 1830s. The Mansfield ruling on Somerset v Stewart only decreed that a slave could not be transported out of England against his will.

Under the leadership of Thomas Jefferson, the new state of Virginia in 1778 became the first state and one of the first jurisdictions anywhere to stop the importation of slaves for sale; it made it a crime for traders to bring in slaves
from out of state or from overseas for sale; migrants from within the United States were allowed to bring their own slaves. The new law freed all slaves brought in illegally after its passage and imposed heavy fines on violators. All the other states in the United States followed suit, although South Carolina reopened its slave trade in 1803.

Denmark, which had been active in the slave trade, was the first country to ban the trade through legislation in 1792, which took effect in 1803. Britain banned the slave trade in 1807, imposing stiff fines for any slave found aboard a British ship (see Slave Trade Act 1807). The Royal Navy moved to stop other nations from continuing the slave trade and declared that slaving was equal to piracy and was punishable by death. The United States Congress passed the Slave Trade Act of 1794, which prohibited the building or outfitting of ships in the U.S. for use in the slave trade. The U.S. Constitution barred a federal prohibition on importing slaves for 20 years; at that time the Act Prohibiting Importation of Slaves prohibited imports on the first day the Constitution permitted: January 1, 1808.

Yes, those “horrible Christian White Men” set about the destruction of a 2000+ year old practice of Slavery and succeeded at it. Even at the expense of 1.5 Million Civil War Casualties and 600,000 dead White Men, mostly.

The Civil War was America’s bloodiest conflict. The unprecedented violence of battles such as Shiloh, Antietam, Stones River, and Gettysburg shocked citizens and international observers alike. Nearly as many men died in captivity during the Civil War as were killed in the whole of the Vietnam War. Hundreds of thousands died of disease. Roughly 2% of the population, an estimated 620,000 men, lost their lives in the line of duty.
Approximately one in four soldiers that went to war never returned home. At the outset of the war, neither army had mechanisms in place to handle the amount of death that the nation was about to experience. There were no national cemeteries, no burial details, and no messengers of loss. The largest human catastrophe in American history, the Civil War forced the young nation to confront death and destruction in a way that has not been equaled before or since.
There were an estimated 1.5 million casualties reported during the Civil War.

“Reparations” were completely paid, in blood, and by ending slavery. Get over it and move on with your life in freedom.

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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18 Responses to Global Slavery – An Interesting Map

  1. John Hultquist says:

    My ancestors are from poor areas of Sweden, Ireland, and Germany.
    They came to the USA in the mid-1800s.

  2. Logau says:

    Today’s enslavement of the masses is carried out, surreptitiously, inescapably and much more elegantly , by dint of confiscatory taxation, compulsory insurances and exorbitant taxes on fuels (oil, gasoline, gas, coal) and electric energy. Take a look at the EU and at Germany in particular.

  3. rogercaiazza says:

    My father was Italian. I doubt that our ancestors were never slaves in their distant past.

  4. philjourdan says:

    You tilt at windmills Don Quixote. Woke is anti-facts. Facts get in the way of hate, Ergo, to be woke is to reject facts and embrace ignorance.

    That is why 7 of 8 clowns at a BLM riot are rich white girls.

  5. The True Nolan says:

    @E.M. “Don’t try pushing that “White Guilt Trip” on me. My people were not involved in large part.”

    And EVEN IF they had been, it makes no difference. The fact is, YOU were never involved, and no American alive today was ever involved. If the left insists on people paying for the deeds of their ancestors, someone is going to point out that the 3% of young Black males commit over 50% of our violent crimes. Will we impose a special “Young Black Male Tax” to repay all the families of violent crime victims? Maybe a “Japanese Ancestry Tax” to cover Pearl Harbor? Perhaps a “North African Heritage Fee” to repay the bondage of the Israelites3,500 years ago? (Imagine the accrued interest!)

    Our national political ideology (and yes, I am speaking mostly of something that has withered away from our nation today) was based on the concept of INDIVIDUAL natural rights. The farther we move from INDIVIDUAL rights, duties, and responsibilities, the deeper we sink into madness.

  6. I think the young woke believe that the past was merely like today, but without i-pads.

    The truth is of course that past times had very different attitudes and our ancestors were shaped by those attitudes. Slavery, serfdom and indentures were the norm in Europe until the 1800’s . People could be bought and sold with the land they worked or bought and sold at the quarter year markets. Life was very hard, brutal and short and it is impossible to lay blame on our ancestors as anyone living now and transported back in time would behave in exactly the same way

    There is a very large chapter often not recounted, as attention is paid to black slavery which dates back to the ancient cities of Mesopotamia. There are barely any civilisations that did not trade slaves, including the Native Americans

    Under the Vikings Dublin became the greatest centre for white slave trading. Up till the 16th century white slaves were the largest source of Atlantic traded slaves, which dwarfed that of black slaves.

    Barbary pirates in conjunction with black Chiefiians regularly raided the coasts of Europe taking white people from coastal towns and putting them into the great slave markets in morocco, tangiers and other Islamic countries.

    My home town on the south coast of England alone had dozens of Christians taken as slaves by the barbary pirates and all Europe was terrorised by them. In our local church are records of how relations tried to get money together to pay a ransom. Some 3 million white Europeans were taken as slaves.

    Our home town hero, Admiral Pellew-finally cleared the slave traders out when they destroyed Algiers in 1816. The story is told here;

    The scene was painted by Thomas Luny who lived just a few yards from Pellew


    {Reply:Note that while this link says .jpg at the end, it in fact is ot a JPEG but an html file. For reasons of stupidity known only to Wikipedia, they tag their media description files with a media file ending. This confuses simple copy past. You must “click through” what looks like the image via opening it in a new page; then you will see the full description page, and can find the actual media link lower down. I’ve pasted the one for this scene below. -E.M.Smith}

    Replica guns using metal taken from those used in the battle can be seen to this day at Pellew’s house which are now council offices

    Horatio Hornblower is said to be based on Pellew’s exploits

    White slavery is recounted in detail in the book ‘White Gold’ by Giles Milton. There are many paintings of the time that show the black and Islamic slave traders and their white slaves..

    So the story is nowhere near as simple as is often believed. Slavery practiced by any nation is wrong but unfortunately has been undertaken since the dawn of time..

    It is said that some 160 countries still have slavery totaling some 46 million people. Rather than revisit the past when attitudes were very different, it seems to me that those demonstrating today ought to be directing their attention to modern day slavery

  7. philjourdan says:

    @TTN – They can accurately point the finger at my ancestors as many of them did own slaves. IN Haiti – not this country! SO they can take their reparations and put them in the unmentioned color hole behind their brain.

  8. E.M.Smith says:


    I fixed the “Bombardment” link. You rightly assumed that the page ending in .jpg was, in fact, a JPEG image, when it isn’t. I’ve left a full description in your comment below the fix. The actual image .jpg is one more link down the page in wikimedia… Yes, they are stupid doing it that way. Yes it violates standards and is wrong. Oh Well, just cope….

  9. The True Nolan says:

    Very interesting but maybe a bit long. Article regarding Washington and Jefferson’s views on slavery:

    The simplistic screams of “BUT THEY WERE WHITE SLAVE OWNERS!!!” is the understanding of a four year old.

  10. E.M.Smith says:


    That’s a fascinating bit of history. I’d often wondered why Jefferson had not just freed his slaves, thinking it might have been that he felt them better cared for on his estate. Low skilled and non-capitalized Blacks not having a lot of economic choices in the Slave States. But that was just speculation given his character and the history of his household.

    But in the article is this:

    As the laws of Virginia did not permit him to emancipate his slaved
    (those laws will be reviewed later in this work), the only other means for him to dispose of the slaves he held was to sell them. And had Washington not become so opposed to selling slaves, he gladly would have used that means to end his ownership of all slaves. As he explained:

    Were it not that I am principled against selling Negroes . . . I would not in twelve months from this date be possessed of one as a slave.

    Interestingly, the personal circumstances faced by Washington provide decisive proof that his convictions were indeed genuine and not merely rhetorical. The quantity of slaves which he held was economically unprofitable for Mount Vernon and caused a genuine hardship on the estate. As Washington explained:

    It is demonstratively clear that on this Estate (Mount Vernon) I have more working Negroes by a full [half] than can be employed to any advantage in the farming system.

    That last line reaffirms my notion (though in this case via Washington) that Jefferson & Washington had the same general mindset I’d have brought to the problem had I been a “Landed Gentleman” of Old Virginia… If I can’t give them freedom, I’d certainly not sell them to some unknown future or potentially some Evil Bastard. I’d just run the estate in the best manner possible for the lives of all. It looks like that is what was done, too.

    Reading the story of Jefferson’s younger brother, it says he would go and play music with the negro slaves in the location of their houses. This implies that Jefferson had set aside an area for the families to build some kind of homes for themselves and have some kind of family life. That they defended him when The British Army (even threatening death if they did not say where Jefferson was…) came to arrest him also speaks to a certain mutual respect.

    Now I know that he only had a real choice of evils.

    Sell the inherited slaves into a very likely worse life, or retain them as a “slave owner” and make the best of it. Set them free and he becomes a criminal while they become criminals and again get handed off to someone less caring (or worse…get killed) That he chose to accept the label he hated as “slave owner” on himself rather than diminish the lives of those in his charge for “his principled position”, is itself a statement of character.

    I don’t see any decent way out of it. Even having a small 2nd Estate in a freer State and moving some slaves there, then liberating them, would likely have run afoul of many laws. IIRC most of the States that were pro-Abolition had made it illegal to import new slaves into the State, so even that path was likely closed.

  11. The True Nolan says:

    @E.M. “Now I know that he only had a real choice of evils.”

    And that is almost always the fact of things. Even the best choices often have at least SOME undesirable consequences. One of the things that makes my jaws torque tight is the modern cry that the creation of the US was somehow done as a means to perpetuate racism, theft, and injustice. The whiners have ZERO conception of history, of culture, or of how insanely unlikely and difficult it was to break out of the conceptual straitjacket which had held humanity to 6,000 years of rule by kings and tyrants. To today’s “progressive” idiots, the problem of slavery was simply that bad people had kidnapped innocent people, so the obvious solution was to just let the innocent people go free. The mind boggles at such deep lack of comprehension, and at the enormous failure of empathy with all previous generations. I sometime think that the current crop of SJWs honestly and truly believe that they are the first generation of GOOD people who have ever lived.

  12. E.M.Smith says:


    What is even more revolting is that the SJWs and Cancel Culture Idiots and BLM and Antifa et. al. offer as their solution: A return to Tyranny and Tyrants. But with them in charge (to start…).

    Clearly VERY unclear on how much work must go into keeping a free people free and that ANY Tyranny will mutate into a horror show of ruthless oppression, slavery for all but the Elites.

    Washington, Jefferson, et. al. were NOT the “Elites”. They abandoned Europe and ran off to a wilderness wild land. The European Elite all stayed home with their riches and palaces. Once here, those folks who became wealthy were disposed to NOT become like those they escaped. Eventually deciding a war with the Greatest Extant Empire to gain liberty and freedom (AND the right to abolish laws like Slavery…) was “worth it”.

    That’s what we celebrate today.

  13. rhoda klapp says:

    Here’s another way to lok at it. The Washingtons and Jefferson left England, not Europe. Firstly because England had the naval power to support north american colonies. Secondly because of inheritiance laws. In England the firstborn son got the lot. Wealth in those days was synonymous with land ownership. Second or later sons could not get land in England, and land was wealth. So they set off to America, where land was free, except for those pesky savages who did not even have legal title. And what did they build? Big houses on big estates, just like at home. When they had established themselves they didn’t need England any more so they compiled a list of complaints, some real and some less so, and set off on their own. Which was historically inevitable. Luckily for the US some of the founding fathers had a pretty good grip on the theory of freedom, it could have gone like some of the south american countries.

  14. E.M.Smith says:


    Or perhaps more like Germany…

    Father In Law liked to report that there was some vote (unfortunately I know not when or what) in the early days of forming The USA. As folks were peeved at England, and a large number of Germans were among the immigrants (for example, the Ohio constitution was originally written in German & we drive on their side of the road); so they held a vote on language.

    I was told the vote went to English instead of German, but only by ONE vote.

    Imagine a world where W.W.I-II era arrives and the USA is speaking German… and has for a generation…


    I decided to see if I could find confirmation if this supposed act. Instead, this:

    Did German almost become America’s official language in 1795?
    April 1, 2019 by Scott Bomboy

    For centuries, stories have persisted about Congress almost approving German as our official language, except for one vote by its German-speaking leader. So how close is that story to the truth?

    On April 1, 1789, Frederick Muhlenberg was chosen as the first speaker of the House of Representatives. Muhlenberg’s father, Henry, was born in Germany, and he played an important role in the establishment of the Lutheran Church in the Colonies.

    Young Frederick was born outside of Philadelphia before serving as a minister and pastor in the colonies. He began his life of public service as a member of the Continental Congress. He also served as the Speaker of Pennsylvania’s House and led the Pennsylvania delegation that ratified the Constitution.

    Muhlenberg then emerged as the preferred candidate for the Speaker’s role as the House neared a quorum for its first meeting in 1789.

    During two terms as Speaker, Muhlenberg was the first person to sign the Bill of Rights, but his tie-breaking vote on the controversial Jay Treaty proved to be his undoing. Muhlenberg lost a re-election bid after that, and his national political career was over.

    But his “legendary” role in preventing the adoption of German as the United States’ official language gained steam over the years.

    The late German academic Willi Paul Adams published a study in 1990 that included an explanation of why so many people believed Muhlenberg acted to block a congressional resolution that would have made German the national language.

    “Fascinating for Germans, this imagined decision has been popularized by German authors of travel literature since the 1840s and propagated by some American teachers of German and German teachers of English who are not entirely secure in their American history,” Adams wrote.

    “In reality, this presumed proposition was never brought to the congressional floor and a vote was never taken,” he added.

    Dennis Baron, professor of English and linguistics at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, also tells a similar tale in an article he penned for PBS’s website, after the Muhlenberg legend popped up in an Ann Landers column.

    “On January 13, 1795, Congress considered a proposal, not to give German any official status, but merely to print the federal laws in German as well as English. During the debate, a motion to adjourn failed by one vote.
    The final vote rejecting the translation of federal laws, which took place one month later, is not recorded,” Baron said, who cites two contemporary sources for the account.

    Baron traces the legend to an 1847 book by Franz Löher called History and Achievements of the Germans in America, which Baron says “presents a garbled though frequently cited account of what is supposed to have happened.”

    Adams also pointed out that just 9 percent of the early United States was German-speaking, and that the vast English-speaking majority would have had a few problems with the concept of an official language.

    “Colonial speakers of English fought only for their political independence. They had no stomach for an anti-English language and cultural revolution,” Adams said.

    Muhlenberg’s role in passing the Jay Treaty with Great Britain was much more controversial than his alleged involvement in rejecting the German language.

    The Senate had passed the treaty by a mandatory two-thirds majority, but the House was needed to fund its provisions. Muhlenberg sided with the Federalists against an opposition led by James Madison.

    In 1796, he cast the key vote in recommending the House fund the treaty. According to several accounts, Muhlenberg was stabbed by his brother-in-law several days later for that vote. He survived that attack and later died in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, in 1801.

    So I can’t fault my Father In Law for being embedded in a culture with a series of incorrect reports, but I can fault myself for not doing a “Dig Here!” before now. Oh Well, better late than never.

    Still, a bi-lingual Federal Laws Record (and perhaps proceedings?) would have shifted the American Culture some fair amount. Likely have lead to greater German immigration and lower conversion to English. Texas had a large German population (and some Texas Deutsche is still spoken today in “hill country”.) About 1/2 my ancestry on my Dad’s side were German speaking (the others Irish from the Gaeltacht so likely speaking Gaelic and broken English. Supposedly only ditched German at the onset of the world war period. (His mom had been Amish and his Dad was a smith to the Amish community so using German would have been a daily thing in the smithy).

    So sorry for the confusion and for having passed on Historic Mythology instead of verifying first.

  15. p.g.sharrow says:

    America was not created by some revolutionaries hiding out in a forest or plotting in a university.. The governments of 13 colonies/states voted in congress to end the Kings control over their affairs, raised an Army and appointed/elected a General to lead it.
    The concept of American/Americans rather then Georgians or Mainers was a creation of the head of a publishing empire, Ben Franklin had spent 30 years tying the people together through the publishing of news paper articles from every colony within every local paper that he controlled so that the people in Georgia knew about the people of Maine or New York as well as the lives of their neighbors. An Nation Organizer rather then a Community Organizer.

  16. p.g.sharrow says:

    The story is told in my clan that my grandfather’s Grandfather came home to his family in upstate Wisconsin, and informed them that, with the new treaty between Britain and America that established the border, they were Americans, registered as Sharrow, From this day forth they would only use American English. No longer their native Canadian French, British or German.The start of a surname and the custom of being Americans,

  17. Steven Crook says:

    Late comment. This is an interesting book on the subject. It concentrates on the Atlantic trade, but there’s plenty up front setting the context in which it arose.

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