The Biography of Mahommah Gardo Baquaqua: His Passage from Slavery to Freedom in Africa and America

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9781558762473: The Biography of Mahommah Gardo Baquaqua: His Passage from Slavery to Freedom in Africa and America

Law (U. of Stirling, Scotland) and Lovejoy (York U.) offer a new, annotated edition of the 66-page pamphlet published by George E. Pomeroy and Company, Detroit, in 1854. It differs from other ex-slave narratives of the period because Baquaqua was residing in Canada when it appeared, because he had been a slave in Brazil rather than the US, and because he was not born into slavery but was captured in Africa. Indeed, well over half of the work describes his life in what is now Benin. The commentary expands the book by several hundred pages. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

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About the Author:

PAUL E. LOVEJOY, York University, is the editor of Slavery and the Muslim Diaspora: African Slaves in Dar es-Salaam. ROBIN LAW, University of Stirling, Scotland, is the author of The Slave Coast of West Africa and other books.

Review:

"Baquaqua, born in the town of Djougou (in northern Benin) in the 1820s and raised as a Muslim, lived a busy life as an ironsmith and palace servant. Then he was kidnapped and transported to Recife in about 1845. In 1847 he arrived in New York and there was able to gain his freedom. He then went to Haiti for two years, returned to New York, and in 1850 began studies at Central College. "This exemplary volume is worthy of study and emulation.... Extensive detail and clear overview of the present edition contrast powerfully with the previous versions." - International Journal of African Historical Studies"

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