Benjamin Bullard to Sir William Pepperell on slave trading, Barbados, 1720

Contributed by Maine Historical Society

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This letter from Benjamin Bullard of Barbados, to Sir William Pepperell of Kittery, detailed Bullard's daily slave trade activities. It also forecasts the economic future of trading on the island of Barbados.

Benjamin Bullard (1695-1730) the son of a Caribbean planter, engaged in the slave trade to Antigua and Barbados for the Royal African Company. He is credited with identifying unsanitary water conditions as a major contributor to disease amongst slaves along with the Atlantic triangular slave trade. However, Bullard is largely remembered for his cruel treatment of prospective slaves, often leading to their early deaths. Bullard once provided Pepperell five slaves, all of whom died within three weeks of their arrival.

Sir William Pepperell (1696- 1759) a Baronet, landowner, and merchant, is remembered for his role in the capture of Louisbourg during King George's War. Although Pepperell's maritime cargo typically consisted of merchant goods, his ownership of slaves and slave trade activities are well documented and served as the basis for the relationship between Bullard and Pepperell.

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About This Item

  • Title: Benjamin Bullard to Sir William Pepperell on slave trading, Barbados, 1720
  • Creator: Benjamin Bullard
  • Creation Date: 1720-03-15
  • Subject Date: 1720-03-15
  • Locations:
    • Bridgetown, St. Michaels County, BB
    • Kittery, York County, ME
  • Media: Ink on paper
  • Dimensions: 22.5 cm x 17 cm
  • Local Code: Coll. S-5024
  • Object Type: Text

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Maine Historical Society
485 Congress Street, Portland, ME 04101
(207) 774-1822 x230

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