Atlas of the Transatlantic Slave Trade David Eltis, David Richardson, David Brion Davis, David W. Blight

Publication date:
22 Oct 2010
288 pages: 279 x 216 x 28mm
189 colour maps, 5 black-&-white illustrations + 36 colour images, 61 colour graphs

Between 1501 and 1867, the transatlantic slave trade claimed an estimated 12.5 million Africans and involved almost every country with an Atlantic coastline. In this extraordinary book, two leading historians have created the first comprehensive, up-to-date atlas on this 350-year history of kidnapping and coercion. It features nearly 200 maps, especially created for the volume, that explore every detail of the African slave traffic to the New World. The atlas is based on an online database with records on nearly 35,000 slaving voyages - roughly 80 per cent of all such voyages ever made.

Using maps, David Eltis and David Richardson show which nations participated in the slave trade, where the ships involved were outfitted, where the captives boarded ship, and where they were landed in the Americas, as well as the experience of the transatlantic voyage and the geographic dimensions of the eventual abolition of the traffic. Accompanying the maps are illustrations and contemporary literary selections, including poems, letters, and diary entries, intended to enhance readers' understanding of the human story underlying the trade from its inception to its end. This groundbreaking work provides the fullest possible picture of the extent and inhumanity of one of the largest forced migrations in history.

More about this title

• Winner of the 2011 James A. Rawley Prize in Atlantic History given by the American Historical Association.
• Winner of the 2011-12 Louis Gottschalk Prize given by the American Society for Eighteenth Century Studies. This prize is for an outstanding historical or critical study on the eighteenth century.

David Eltis is Robert W. Woodruff Professor of History and principal investigator, Electronic Slave Trade Database Project, Emory University. The author of The Rise of African Slavery in the Americas, he lives in Atlanta. David Richardson is director, Wilberforce Institute for the Study of Slavery and Emancipation, and professor of economic history, University of Hull, England. He serves on the advisory board of the Electronic Slave Trade Database Project and lives in England. Together, the authors coedited Extending the Frontiers: Essays on the New Transatlantic Slave Trade Database.

"This marvelous book will change how people think of the slave trade. It deserves every accolade it is likely to get."—Nicolas van de Walle, Foreign Affairs

"A ground-breaking project: the Atlas will be indispensable for all those interested in the slave trade."—Jane Webster, Times Literary Supplement

"We are indebted to Eltis and Richardson for opening up new evidence and pointing towards future projects. The importance of this book transcends the story of the slave trade itself."—James Walvin, Family & Community History Vol 14.2