Events that have shaped Bristol's existing representation of Slavery Heritage

(Bristol Race Forum, 2010)

History of Bristol's involvement in the transatlantic slave trade

John Cabot sets sail from Bristol and discovers Newfoundland.

1497

The Society of Merchant Venturers is formed

1552

It aims to promote Bristol's trading interests and is given a Royal Charter by Edward VI.

Sir John Hawkins attempts to establish the triangular trade.

1562

Battle of Preston

1648

400 prisoners of war taken from Bristol to Barbados.

The Society of Merchant Venturers involvment n the White Slave Trade

1649 - 1660

The Commonwealth and the Protectorate of Oliver Cromwell were heavily involved in the transportation the indigent Irish to the colonies

Battle of Worcester

1651

Scots taken to Avon to be transported into slavery.

Bristol Corporation pass an ordinance

1652

"to prevent the kidnapping of boys maids and others transporting them beyond seas and there disposing of them for private gain" (Robinson, 1973:13)

White Irish traded

1652

The Council of State ordered the Governor og Waterford as many Irishmen as 3 Bristol Merchants wanted

The Tolzey Book began opperating to regulate the indentured servant system.

1654 - 1686

It was noted that not all indentured servants went to the plantations voluntarily. Some were "spirited", kidnapped of the streets and forcibly transported.
Bristol was notoriously involved in the spiriting trade.

Known trade that operated from the port of Bristol

1654 - 1686

Documents from the Register of Servants to Foreign Plantations, 1654-1686

White labour unable to meet demand.

1660

Black African slaves began to be imported.

London-based Royal African Company is founded

1672

It is granted a monopoly over the British trade to Africa

Bristol's first coffee house owned by John Kimber

1677

Bristol's legal involvement in the African Slave Trade

1698 - 1807

Bristol Merchants able to trade legally in black slaves

1698

Bristol's first "legal" slaving ship.

1698

Named The Beginning, the ship carries captured Africans to Jamacia

Complete replacement of the white labour with the African Slave Trade

1700

Colston's School for boys started, with funds from Edward Colston

1710

Importance of the African Trade to the city is argued

1711 - 1713

Argued by Bristol Corporation, now Bristol City Council, and the Society of Merchant Ventueres.

Queens square completed

1727

It houses wealthy merchants close to the docks.

Britain becomes the biggest slaving country

1730

Bristol overtakes London as England's number one slaving port

1737

Bristol Corn Exchange completed

1743

Liverpool overtakes Bristol as the number one slaving port.

1747

Bristol's first bank, the Bristol Bank opened

1750

It is opened by West India merchants Tyndall, Elton & Co. Now part of the Santander Group.

Thomas Clarkson visits Bristol and the Seven Stars Pub

1787

This is to look for evidence against the Slave Trade.

Committee for the Abolition of the Slave Trade is formed

1787

French Revolution encourages an insurrection of slaves in Hati

1789

Abolition of the Slave Trade Act

1807

Slave rebellion in Jamacia

1815

Anti-Slavery Committee formed in London

1823

Formed to campaign for total abolition of slavery.

Major slave revolt in Jamaica

1831 - 1832

Slave rebellions in Antigua, Jamaica and Virginia

1831

Bristol Riots

1831

Rioters burn down Queens Square and free citizens at the gaol.

Abolition of Slavery Act in the British Colonies

1834

British plantation owners awarded £20 million in compensation.

Thirteenth Amendment abolishes slavery in the United States

1865

Main

Unemployed White and Black seamen clash in "race riots in Liverpool and Cardiff

1919

Commonwealth Immigration Act

1962

curtails migration from the New Commonwealth and the Caribbean in particular.

Britain's first Race Relations Act

1965

Outlaws discrimination in public places, refusing to rent houses based on race also made illegal.

New Immigration Act

1971

Limits immigration rights of the New Commonwealth migrants further.

Bristol's Race Relations Council established

1976

The first city in the UK, role to liaise on behalf of the migrant community.

Race Relations Amendment Act

1976

Makes racial discrimination in employment and the provision of goods and services illegal.

St Pauls Riot

1980

Sparked by police raid on the Black and White Cafe, long term factors involved high unemployment amongst Black Britons played a crucial role.

Uprising riots around the UK including Liverpool and London

1981

More violent St Pauls riots

1986

Police attempted to raid Black and White Cafe.

Black young people are attacked on The Downs, Bristol

1994

They are attacked by fairground workers, leaving a 17 year old unable to walk and talk for himself.

The Festival of the Sea, celebrates Bristol's maritime history

1996

But it ignores slavery and the impact of colonisation of the Americas.

Visible representation and comemoration of Slavery Heritage in Bristol

1997 - 2013

Slavery and John Pinney exhibitition opened at The Georgian House.

1997

Plaque unveiled at the city's Industrial Museum

1997

It acknowledges Bristol's connection to transatlantic slavery.

Activists protest about insensitivity of Cabot 500 celebrations

1997

Bristol celebrates 500 years since Cabot's voyage

1997

Slave Trade Trail around Central Bristol created

1998

Slave Trade Action Group formed

1998

"A Respectable Trade?" exhibition opens

1999

The first exhibition about Bristol and Transatlantic Slavery, opened at the City Museum.
It is only meant to be a temporary exhibit.

Pero's Bridge opened

1999

Named after John Pinney's slave who lived in The Georgian House.

"A Respectable Trade?" exhibit is relocated to the Bristol Industrial Museum

2000

This becomes it's permanent location.

Race Relations Amendment Act

2001

A duty is put on all public services to ensure they implement and uphold racial equality policies.

Apology Debate

2006

A debate hosted by the British Empire and Commonwealth Museum asking should Bristol apologies for the slave trade?

Bristol Industrial Museum is closed

2006

Original chosen name "Merchants Quarter" for new shopping center is criticised

2006

This is due to it's apparent associations with the slave trade.

Abolition 200: bicentenary of the British Abolition of the Slave Trade

2007

"Breaking The Chains" exhibition opens

2007

Located at the British Empire and Commonwealth Museum, Bristol, it tells the story of Britain and the transatlantic slavery.
Funded by grant of £1 million from the Heritage Lottery

"Breaking the Chains" exhibition moves to London

2009

Mshed Museum opens

2011

Located in the same site as the old Bristol Industrial Museum, funded by a £10 million grant by Bristol City Council.

Bristol People- Transatlantic Slave Trade Gallery

2011

Exhibit showing the brutal and shameful history of the transportation and enslavement of African peoples and uncovering the role that Bristol played in trading in goods and in people's lives.