Treasure 2: 19th century papers about slavery

The title on the spine of this volume (our reference D3155/WH/2939) is Confidential Papers on the West India Question.  It’s a hefty thing, as you can see from the video below, in which I show point out just four examples of the contents.  There are another two in the same collection.

Those three volumes form just one section of the papers of the parliamentarian Sir Robert Wilmot-Horton (1784-1841); and his papers are in turn only a part of the enormous archive of the Wilmot-Horton family of Catton Hall in Derbyshire.  Sir Robert Wilmot-Horton held the post of Under Secretary of State for the Colonies during a crucial period in the struggle against slavery – after the abolition of the trade, but before the legislation that abolished slavery as an institution.  These official papers show how both sides worked hard to lobby parliament on the issue.

Mark Smith

James Ledekin’s description of the Bahamas

D37 M/H 20/14: Beaumont, Long Island, Bahamas

Mr Holland,

Sir I make no doubt yow was surprised at the steps I have taken, in leaving England for the Bahamas.  Indeed it was a thing unthought of untill I arrived in London; Continue reading