Slave Coffle

Mungo Park: How I was saved by an African slave trader

16 September 1796

ALMOST a year into his journey, Park arrives in the town of Kamalia in a terrible state. Ravaged by fever, weak from hunger and with his clothes in rags, he is near death. He is received by a Muslim slave trader called Karfa Taura who offers him food and accommodation in return for the future payment of one slave.

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A young woman is traded into slavery

30 May 1797

IN THIS excerpt from Mungo Park’s Travels in the Interior of Africa he describes how a sick slave is traded for a young woman who suddenly finds herself attached to the slave coffle

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Mungo Park: Travelling with the slave coffle

19 April 1797

IN THIS excerpt from Travels in the Interior of Africa, Mungo Park describes the composition of a slave coffle, which includes merchants, free men, their wives and domestic slaves, a schoolmaster, thirty five slaves for sale, and six Jilli keas – singing men – who served to keep spirits up as well as entertaining hosts along the route.

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