We recently bought an abolitionist broadside printed in Haddington, East Lothian, in 1814 – seven years after the Abolition of the Slave Trade Act was passed. It is simply entitled Slave Trade. Beneath the title is a telling woodcut followed by an abolitionist poem:
The inhabitants of Dunbar, a coastal town in East Lothian, had met in June 1814 to discuss the fact that slavery was still ongoing. They were appalled at this disgraceful state of affairs and resolved to do something about it. The broadside is the outcome of their discussions.
It calls for everybody in and around Dunbar who is opposed to “the revival of the bloody traffic” to come forward and sign a petition to both Houses of Parliament. This petition is to ask MPs and Lords to use their influence so that the slave trade may be universally abolished. The petition has already been drawn up and is available in Dunbar Council House.
On our website: resources for Scotland and the Slave Trade