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‘Destiny seems to point me to that country’: early nineteenth-century African American migration, emigration, and expansion*

  • Bronwen Everill (a1)
Abstract

Traditional American historiography has dismissed the Liberian settlement scheme as impractical, racist, and naïve. The movement of Americans to Liberia, and other territorial and extraterritorial destinations, however, reveals the ‘push’ and ‘pull’ factors that influenced movement in the African diaspora. The reaction of different African Americans to these factors influenced the political and social development of Liberia as well as the colony's image at home. Africans migrating within and beyond US borders participated in a broader movement of people and the development of settler ideology in the nineteenth century.

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1 Liberator, 2, 4, 28 January 1832, p. 14.

2 ACS membership included both slaveholders and non-slaveholders, including several signatories of the Declaration of Independence, George Washington's nephew, Bushrod, and Senator Henry Clay. For more on the creation of Liberia, see West, Richard, Back to Africa: a history of Sierra Leone and Liberia, London: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1970; Beyan, Amos J., The American Colonization Society and the creation of the Liberian state, Lanham, MD: University Press of America, 1991; Ryan, Susan M.‘Errand into Africa: colonization and nation building in Sarah J. Hale's Liberia’, New England Quarterly, 68, 4, 1995, pp. 558–83.

3 For examples of this traditional view, see Alexander, Leslie, African or American? Black identity in New York City, 1784–1861, Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press, 2008, p. 77; Taylor, Nikki, ‘Reconsidering the “forced: exodus of 1829: free black emigration from Cincinnati, Ohio to Wilberforce, Canada’, Journal of African American History, 87, 2002, pp. 283–302.

4 Lester, Alan, Imperial networks: creating identities in nineteenth-century South Africa and Britain, London: Routledge, 2001, p. 48.

5 Adeleke, Tunde, UnAfrican Americans: nineteenth-century black nationalists and the civilizing mission, Lexington, KY: University Press of Kentucky, 1998, p. 3. James Sidbury and Gary Nash have both explored the rise and fall of African-centred identity and a proto ‘Back to Africa’ movement among free African Americans in the post-Revolutionary North: Nash, Gary, Forging freedom, Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1988; Sidbury, James, Becoming African in America, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007. See also Shick, Tom W., Behold the promised land: a history of Afro-American settler society in nineteenth-century Liberia, Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1980; Hunt, Alfred N., Haiti's influence on antebellum America: slumbering volcano in the Caribbean, Baton Rouge, LA: Louisiana State University Press, 1988, pp. 168, 172; Delaney, Martin, The condition, elevation, emigration, and destiny of the colored people of the United States, Baltimore, MD: Black Classic Press, 1993 (first published 1852).

6 Troutman, Philip, ‘Grapevine in the slave market: African American geopolitical literacy and the 1841 Creole revolt’, in Johnson, Walter, ed., The chattel principle, New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2004, p. 213.

7 Liberator, 28 January 1832, p. 14.

8 Inikori, Joseph E., ‘Africa and the globalization process: western Africa 1450–1850’, Journal of Global History, 2, 1, 2007, pp. 63–86.

9 Patterson, Tiffany Ruby and Kelley, Robin D. G., ‘Unfinished migrations: reflections on the African diaspora and the making of the modern world’, African Studies Review, 43, 1, 2000, p. 13.

10 Tyrrell, Ian, Transnational nation: United States history in global perspective since 1789, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007; Sexton, Jay, Debtor diplomacy: finance and American foreign relations in the Civil War era 1837–1873, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005; Belich, James, Replenishing the earth: the settler revolution and the rise of the Anglo-world, 1783–1939, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009; Thompson, Andrew and Magee, Gary, Empire and globalisation, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010.

11 Tyrrell, Transnational nation, p. 69, but, more broadly, ch. 5.

12 Clegg, Claude Andrew, The price of liberty: African Americans and the making of Liberia, Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 2004; Burin, Eric, Slavery and the peculiar solution: a history of the American Colonization Society, Gainesville, FL: University Press of Florida, 2005.

13 Allen, William E., ‘Liberia and the Atlantic world in the nineteenth century: convergence and effects’, History in Africa, 37, 2010, pp. 7–49.

14 Douglass-Chin, Richard, ‘Liberia as American diaspora: the transnational scope of American identity in the mid-nineteenth century’, Canadian Review of American Studies, 40, 2, 2010, pp. 213–34.

15 See Nikki Taylor, ‘“Forced” exodus’, p. 288; Hunt, Haiti's influence, p. 174.

16 Alexander, African or American, p. 153; Peter Hinks, preface in Walker, David, Walker's appeal, in four articles, ed. Peter P. Hinks, University Park, PA: Pennsylvania State University Press, 2000, p. xxix; Harris, Leslie, In the shadow of slavery: African Americans in New York City, 1626–1863, Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 2003; Newman, Richard, The transformation of American abolitionism: fighting slavery in the early republic, Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 2002.

17 Dixon, Chris, African America and Haiti: emigration and black nationalism in the nineteenth century, Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2000, pp. 1, 64. Dixon then turns to examine ‘the black community’s’ curiosity about Trinidad. Just as with many other historians of antebellum emigration and anti-slavery, he assumes in his writing that the ‘black community’ means free African Americans because those who were enslaved could not have had any choice in the matter or their interests were spoken for by their free ‘brethren’.

18 See Burin, Slavery, tables.

19 Patterson and Kelley, ‘Unfinished migrations’, 19.

20 Walker, Juliet E. K., The history of black business in America: capitalism, race, entrepreneurship, 2nd edition, vol. 1, Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 2009, pp. 113, 98.

21 Fields, Barbara J., Slavery and freedom on the middle ground: Maryland during the nineteenth century, New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1985, p. 33.

22 Wiley, Bell I., ed., Slaves no more: letters from Liberia, 1833–1869, Lexington, KY: University Press of Kentucky, 1980, p. 2; Marie Tyler-McGraw, An African republic: black and white Virginians in the making of Liberia, Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, p. 154; Phil S. Sigler, ‘Where the free air blows: the attitudes of free black Americans towards emigration to Liberia, 1817–1865’, unpublished paper from the Indiana University Liberian Collections Project (henceforth LCP), p. 4.

23 Library of Congress, American Colonization Society papers (henceforth ACSP), Louis Sheridan to Joseph Gales, Wilmington, NC, 16 February 1836.

24 Historical Society of Pennsylvania (henceforth HSP), Examination of Thomas C. Brown a free colored citizen of S. Carolina, as to the actual state of things in Liberia in the years 1833 and 1834, New York, 9 May 1834.

25 Lindsay, Lisa A., ‘“To return to the bosom of their fatherland”: Brazilian immigrants in nineteenth?century Lagos’, Slavery & Abolition, 15, 1, 1994, pp. 24–5.

26 Magee and Thompson, Empire and globalisation, p. 76.

27 Frost, Diane, ‘Diasporan West African communities: the Kru in Freetown & Liverpool’, Review of African Political Economy, 29, 92, 2002, p. 289; Brooks, G. E. Jr, The Kru mariner in the nineteenth century: an historical compendium, Newark, DE: Liberian Studies Association in America, 1972.

28 Martin, Jane, ‘Krumen “down the coast”: Liberian migrants on the West African coast in the 19th and early 20th centuries’, International Journal of African Historical Studies, 18, 3, 1985, p. 406.

29 Ibid., p. 403.

30 Magee and Thompson, Empire and globalisation, pp. 64, 66: ‘It is estimated that, from 1860 to 1914, as many as 40 per cent of all English emigrants came back to Britain’.

31 Bickers, Robert, ‘Introduction: Britains and Britons over the seas’, in Bickers, Robert, ed., Settlers and expatriates: Britons over the seas, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010, p. 1.

32 Lindsay, ‘Brazilian immigrants’, pp. 27–8.

33 Magee and Thompson, Empire and globalisation, p. 75.

34 Sanneh, Lamin, Abolitionists abroad: American blacks and the making of modern West Africa, Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1999, p. 15.

35 Tadman, Michael, Speculators and slaves: masters, traders, and slaves in the old south, Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin Press, 1989, pp. 6–7; Kulikoff, Alan, ‘Uprooted peoples: black migrants in the age of the American revolution, 1790–1820’, in Berlin, Ira and Hoffman, Benjamin, eds., Slavery and freedom in the age of the American revolution, Charlottesville, VA: University of Virginia Press, 1983, p. 152; Burin, Slavery, p. 61; Johnson, Walter, Soul by soul: life inside the antebellum slave market, Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2004, ch. 7; Freudenberger, Herman and Pritchett, Jonathan B., ‘The domestic United States slave trade: new evidence’, Journal of Interdisciplinary History, 21, 3, 1991, pp. 447–77.

36 Berlin, Ira, Generations of captivity, Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2003, p. 214.

37 Kulikoff, ‘Uprooted peoples’, p. 152; Philip Troutman puts the total number of forced migrations between 1790 and 1860 at 1.1 million, or ‘more than twice the number of Africans carried to mainland North America in the previous century’ (Troutman, ‘Grapevine’, pp. 203–4).

38 Fields, Slavery and freedom, p. 5.

39 Tadman, Speculators and slaves, p. 141.

40 Ibid., 151.

41 Berlin, Generations of captivity, p. 213.

42 George Johnson from Harper's Ferry, in Drew, Benjamin, A north-side view of slavery: the refugee; or the narratives of fugitive slaves in Canada related by themselves, Boston: J.P. Jewett and Company, 1856, p. 52.

43 Quoted in Tadman, Speculators and slaves, p. 156.

44 Burin, Slavery, p. 78; Schermerhorn, Calvin, ‘The everyday life of enslaved people in the antebellum south’, OAH Magazine of History, 23, 2, 2009, pp. 31–2.

45 Burin, Slavery, pp. 74–5.

46 Ibid., pp. 75–6. Burin explains that ‘On seventy-nine separate occasions, multiple slaveholders freed bondpersons at the same time and in the same county. Most of these conjunctive emancipations involved just two slaveholders, though there were several cases wherein five or more took part. All totalled, 221 manumitters (that is, 39 percent of all manumitters) participated in conjunctive emancipations.’

47 Wiley, Slaves no more, pp. 13, 100.

48 Ibid., Galloway Smith McDonogh to John McDonogh, 1 July 1842.

49 Smith, Kimberly K., African American environmental thought, Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas, 2007, p. 24.

50 Wiley, Slaves no more, George R. Ellis McDonogh to John McDonogh, 14 April 1844; Jacob Gibson to John H. Latrobe and William McKenney, 31 August 1833.

51 Ibid., Alexander Hance to William McKenney, 30 August 1835; Paul F. Lansay to John H. B. Latrobe, 16 January 1839.

52 See Fyfe, Christopher, A history of Sierra Leone, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1962; Peterson, John, Province of freedom: a history of Sierra Leone, 1787–1870, London: Faber and Faber, 1969.

53 Hunt, Haiti's influence, 170.

54News from Africa’: a collection of facts, relating to the colony in Liberia, for the information of the free people of colour in Maryland, Baltimore, MD: J.D. Toy, 1832, p. 1.

55 Wiley, Slaves no more, James C. Minor to John Minor, 11 February 1833.

56 Ibid., Abraham Blackford to Mary B. Blackford, 14 February 1846.

57 Lindsay, ‘Brazilian immigrants’, pp. 24–5; Abasiattai, Monday B., ‘The search for independence: new world blacks in Sierra Leone and Liberia, 1787–1847’, Journal of Black Studies, 23, 1, 1992, pp. 107–16.

58 Mann, Kristin, ‘Shifting paradigms in the study of the African diaspora and of Atlantic history and culture’, Slavery & Abolition, 22, 1, 2001, p. 10.

59 Sanneh, Abolitionists abroad, pp. 74–6.

60 Electronic Text Center, University of Virginia Liberian letters (henceforth UVA), Samson Ceasar to Henry F. Westfall, 2 June 1834.

61 HSP, (Phi) 490, Series II, Letter to the Pennsylvania Abolition Society, 20 March 1834.

62News from Africa’, pp. 16–17.

63 ‘Extracts from an address of the colonists to the free people of colour in the United States’, in Thomas Hodgkin, On negro emancipation and American colonization, London, 1832.

64 ‘Sentiments of the free persons of colour in Charleston, S.C.’ in ‘News from Africa’, p. 24.

65 This unnamed Philadelphian, in her letter to the Liberator, did also point out that in emigrating to (Catholic) Mexico ‘we can take with us the Holy Bible, which is able to make us wise unto salvation; and perhaps we may be made the honored instruments in the hands of an all-wise God, in establishing the holy religion of the Protestant Church in that country.’

66 Hilton, Boyd, The age of atonement: the influence of evangelicalism on social and economic thought, 1795–1865, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988; Porter, Andrew N., Religion versus empire? British protestant missionaries and overseas expansion, 1700–1914, Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2004, pp. 45–53; David Brion Davis, ‘Exiles, exodus, and promised lands’, Tanner Lectures on Human Values, delivered at Stanford University, 22–3 February 2006, http://www.tannerlectures.utah.edu/lectures/documents/Davis_2007.pdf (consulted 7 November 2011).

67 Wilkeson, Samuel, A concise history of the commencement, progress, and present condition of the American colonies of Liberia, Washington, DC, 1839, p. 51. Although the colony was founded with money for the ‘recaptured’ slaves to resettle, and between 1827 and 1830 240 recaptives were resettled, by 1835 only 37 more had been sent, and by 1839 only 9 more: Tables showing the number of emigrants and recaptured Africans sent to the colony of Liberia by the government of the United States, Washington, DC, 1845.

68 Miller, Randall, ed., ‘Dear master’: letters of a slave family, Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press, 1990, Peyton Skipwith to John Hartwell Cocke, 27 June 1846.

69 Sanneh, Abolitionists abroad, p. 221.

70 Beyan, Amos J., African American settlements in West Africa: John Brown Russwurm and the American civilizing efforts, New York: Palgrave, 2005, p. 29; Sidbury, Becoming African, pp. 198–9.

71 Sidbury, Becoming African, p. 177.

72 Cornish, Samuel and Wright, Theodore, The colonization scheme considered in its rejection by the colored people, Newark, NJ: Aaron Guest, 1840, p. 6.

73 Ibid., p. 13, emphasis in original. Cornish did, however, participate in the ‘Society for Haiti’, which cooperated with the ACS. Hunt, Haiti's influence, p. 168.

74 For more on other West African Portuguese creole societies, see Philip Havik, Creole societies in the Portuguese colonial empire, Lusophone Studies 6, July 2007, pp. 41–63 and 127–153.

75 See Guyatt, Nicholas, ‘“The outskirts of our happiness”: race and the lure of colonization in the early republic’, Journal of American History, 95, 4, 2009, pp. 986–1011.

76 Burin, Slavery, tables.

77 LCP, Tom Schick, ‘The 1843 Liberian census: an analysis of settler society before independence’.

78 Saha, S. C., ‘Transference of American values through agriculture to Liberia: a review of Liberian agriculture during the nineteenth century’, Journal of Negro History, 72, 3/4, 1987, pp. 58–60; Mouser, Bruce L., ‘The Baltimore/Pongo connection: American entrepreneurism, colonial expansionism, or African opportunism?’, International Journal of African Historical Studies, 33, 2, 2000, pp. 313–33; Akpan, M. B., ‘Black imperialism: Americo-Liberian rule over the African peoples of Liberia, 1841–1964’, Canadian Journal of African Studies/Revue Canadienne des Études Africaines, 7, 2, 1973, pp. 218–19; Mouser, Bruce L., ‘Landlords-strangers: a process of accommodation and assimilation’, International Journal of African Historical Studies, 8, 3, 1975, pp. 425–40; Hargreaves, John, ‘African colonization in the nineteenth century: Liberia and Sierra Leone’, in Butler, Jeffrey, ed., Boston University Papers in African History, vol. 1, Boston, MA: Boston University Press, 1964, p. 73.

79 Miller, ‘Dear master’, Peyton Skipwith, 22 April 1840.

80 UVA, Samson Ceasar to Henry Westfall, 1 April 1834.

81 African colonization – slave trade – commerce, report of Mr. Kennedy, of Maryland, from the committee on commerce of the House of Representatives of the United States, Washington, DC, 1843, p. 823.

82 Ibid.

83 Miller, ‘Dear master’, Peyton Skipwith to John Hartwell Cocke, 10 February 1834.

84 Kentucky Special Collections, Wickliffe-Preston Family Papers, Box 39, 20 September 1835, G. W. McElroy to Mary Owen Todd Russell Wickliffe, for Lucy Russell, http://www.bluegrass.kctcs.edu/LCC/HIS/scraps/liberia.html (consulted 7 November 2011).

85 Smith, African American environmental thought, p. 19.

86 HSP, Examination of Thomas C. Brown.

87 Denoon, Donald, ‘Understanding settler societies’, Historical Studies, 18, 73, 1979, pp. 520, 522.

88 UVA, Samson Ceasar to Henry F. Westfall, 2 June 1834.

89 For more the other settlements along the coast, see Mann, Kristin, Slavery and the birth of an African city: Lagos, 1760–1900, Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 2007; Mann, Kristin, ‘The dangers of dependence: Christian marriage among elite women in Lagos colony, 1880–1915’, Journal of African History, 24, 1, 1983, pp. 37–56; Lever, J.T., ‘Mulatto influence on the Gold Coast in the early nineteenth century: Jan Neiser of Elmina’, African Historical Studies, 3, 2, 1970, pp. 253–261; Priestley, Margaret, West African trade and coast society: a family study, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1969, pp. 121–127. For more on this comparison, see Everill, Bronwen, ‘British West Africa or the “United States of Africa”? Imperial tensions in the transatlantic anti-slavery movement, 1838–1842’, Journal of Transatlantic Studies, 11, 2, 2011, pp. 136–150.

90 Burrowes, Carl Patrick, ‘Black Christian republicanism: a southern ideology in early Liberia, 1822 to 1847’, Journal of Negro History, 86, 1, 2001, pp. 30–44. Burrowes argues that the development of a coherent African American worldview in the South helped advance colonization and shaped Liberian society.

91 Holsoe, Svend, ‘A study of relations between settlers and indigenous peoples in western Liberia, 1821–1847’, African Historical Studies, 4, 2, 1971, p. 350.

92 African Repository, 16, 1840, pp. 215–16.

93 Wiley, Slaves no more, Sion Harris to Samuel Wilkeson, 16 April 1840.

94 Ibid.

95 Good, Kenneth, ‘Settler colonialism: economic development and class formation’, Journal of Modern African Studies, 14, 1976, pp. 599–600.

96 The National Archives UK, CO 267/166, Fergusson to Russell, 8 October 1841.

97 Richard Allen, Bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, US, quoted in Walker, Walker's appeal, pp. 59–60, emphasis in original.

98 Ibid., p. 58.

99 Smith, African American environmental thought, p. 39.

100 See Taylor, Nikki, Frontiers of freedom: Cincinnati's black community, 1802–1868, Athens, OH: Ohio University Press, 2005; Vincent, Stephen A., Southern seed, northern soil: African-American farm communities in the midwest, 1765–1900, Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1999.

101 Taylor, ‘“Forced” exodus’, p. 289.

102 Merritt, Jane T., At the crossroads: Indians and empires on a Mid-Atlantic frontier, 1700–1763, Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 2003, p. 22.

103 Merk, Frederick, Manifest destiny and mission in American history, Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1963, p. 8.

104 Smith, African American environmental thought, pp. 43–4, 67.

105 See, for instance, Taylor, ‘“Forced” exodus’; Drew, North-side view; Winks, Robin W., The blacks in Canada: a history, Montreal: McGill–Queen's University Press, 1997, p. 142.

106 Constitution of the American society of free persons of color and an address, Philadelphia, PA, 1831, p. 5.

107 Ibid., p. 9.

108 Walker, Walker's appeal, p. vii.

109 Liberator, 28 January 1832, p. 14.

110 Robert Roberts and the colored citizens of Boston, 12 March 1831, quoted by Garrison, William Lloyd, Thoughts on African colonization, Boston: Garrison and Knapp, 1832, p. 20.

111 Liberator, 28 January 1832, p. 14.

112 Magee and Thompson, Empire and globalisation, p. 56.

113 Walker, History of black business, pp. 112–13.

114 Nash, Forging freedom, p. 248.

115 Letter quoted in Garrison, Thoughts on African colonization, pp. 58–9.

116 Magee and Thompson, Empire and globalisation, p. 55.

117 Lindsay, ‘Brazilian immigration’, p. 28.

118 Walker, History of black business, pp. 122–3.

119 Ibid., p. 124.

120 Bell, Howard Holman, ed., Minutes of the proceedings of the National Negro Conventions, 1830–1864, New York: Arno Press, 1969, p. 28, emphasis in original. See also Walker, History of black business, p. 123; Sidbury, Becoming African, p. 196.

121 Liberian Archives, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Last Will and Testament of Isaac Dean, 3 June 1854.

122 ‘The plantation slave system linked self-possession to possession of the land … for slaves, achieving freedom would mean, prominently, achieving the right to the land on which they labored so they could produce food for themselves and their families … And achieving that right, in turn, depended in part on demonstrating that they could make the land productive – that they had the intelligence and self-discipline to master nature’ (Smith, African American environmental thought, p. 19).

123 Tyler-McGraw, African republic, p. 158.

124 LCP, Fuller, Thomas J. Jr, Journal of a voyage to Liberia, and a visit to several of its settlements, Baltimore, MD: John D. Toy, 1851, pp. 13–14.

125 See Dalila Scruggs, ‘Colonization pictures as primary documents’, http://www.vcdh.virginia.edu/liberia/pages/scruggs.html (consulted 7 November 2011).

126 Liberia Herald, 31 August 1849.

127 ACSP, reel 156, series IB vol. 6, parts 1–2, Roberts to McLain, 22 February 1853; Wiley, Slaves no more, Seaborn Evans to Josiah Sibley, 5 November 1856.

128 Belohlavek, John M., ‘Race, progress, and destiny: Caleb Cushing and the quest for American empire’, in Haynes, Sam W. and Morris, Christopher, eds., Manifest destiny and empire: American antebellum expansion, College Station, TX: Texas A&M University Press, 1997.

129 Walker, History of black business, p. 124.

130 John McKay, On Liberia, Indianapolis, IN: A. H. Brown, 1854, p. 6.

131 Drew, North-side view, p. 190.

132 Quoted in Clegg, Price of liberty, p. 174. War with Canada was highly unlikely, but its spectre arose from time to time in the antebellum period, and the rapid expansion of the US in the 1840s may have given the Liberia Herald enough room to push this line in encouraging migrants to choose Liberia over Canada.

133 Ibid., p. 174.

134 Winks, Blacks in Canada, p. 143.

135 Frederick Douglass to Horace Greeley, quoted in a letter from Benjamin Coates to Frederick Douglass, 17 July 1850, in Lapansky-Werner, Emma J. and Bacon, Margaret Hope, eds., Back to Africa: Benjamin Coates and the colonization movement in America, 1848–1880, University Park, PA: Pennsylvania State University Press, 2005, pp. 64–5.

136 Dixon, African America, p. 65.

137 Liberia Herald, 17, 12, 29 October 1849, article quoted from the Journal of Commerce; Tyler-McGraw, African republic, p. 79.

138 Alexander, African or American, p. 145; Tyler-McGraw, African republic, pp. 166–7; Burin, Slavery, table 2.

139 Thirtieth annual report of the American Society for Colonizing the Free People of Color of the United States Washington, DC, 1846, p. 39; Lynn, Martin, ‘Technology, trade, and “a race of native capitalists”: the Krio diaspora of West Africa and the steamship, 1852–1895’, Journal of African History, 33, 1992, pp. 421–40.

* For their helpful suggestions, I would like to thank the anonymous readers and the editors of the Journal of Global History, as well as the McNeil Center for Early American Studies at the University of Pennsylvania and the Rothermere American Institute at Oxford University, where I presented early drafts of this article. I would also like to acknowledge the Economic History Society, Royal Historical Society, and both the Department of History and the School of Humanities at King's College London, whose funding made the research possible.

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