The Influence of the Slave Trade on Atlantic Shipbuilding


Although the history and archaeology of slavery has been well researched, relatively few studies have focused on the design, construction, and use of slave ships. The slave trade introduced new social elements and cultural exchange and created networks of global communication which, after the abolition of slavery, grew into complex international trade systems. The study of slave ships allows us to not only better understand the mechanisms behind this social phenomena, but also brings to light a lesser understood part of our maritime past. Although the slave trade initially used standard exploratory and cargo vessels, it quickly developed into a highly specialized trade system that required purpose-built ships designed to carry living cargo along predetermined trade routes. This presentation explores the questions that can be answered in nautical archaeology by studying the development of slave ships from late medieval to modern/industrial era slaving voyages.

Cite this Record

The Influence of the Slave Trade on Atlantic Shipbuilding. Tiago M Fraga, George Schwarz, Stephen Lubkemann. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Washington, D.C. 2016 ( tDAR id: 435000)


Geographic Keywords
PORTUGAL Western Europe

Spatial Coverage

min long: -28.549; min lat: 32.638 ; max long: -6.19; max lat: 42.151 ;

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 659