Why Was Slavery Abolished?

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Why was slavery abolished? Slavery was the process where slaves had to do hard labour for the people who legally owned them. Abolish means to stop something happening. Slaves were wanted so they could do all the work for their owners and anything else they wanted them to do. Slaves did jobs like looking after animals, others were in the fields working on the crops that were being grown, some slaves worked in the mills working the machines, slaves did any other jobs their owners wanted them to do. There were several reasons for abolishing slavery which will be discussed in this essay, some were humanitarian, some were economic. Examples of different views on why slavery was abolished were for example – one English historian, in 1869 said ‘The crusade of England against slavery may be regarded as one of the most virtuous acts recorded in the history of the nations’. Another example from a West Indian man, writing in 1938 said ‘Those who see in the abolition of slavery the awakening conscience of mankind should spend a few minutes asking themselves why it is that man’s conscience, which has slept peacefully for so many centuries, should awake just at the time when men began to see the unprofitableness of slavery’. One factor why historians believe slavery was abolished was because of the actions of white, middle-class campaigners such as Granville Sharp and William Wilberforce. Granville Sharp was involved in many court cases, helping black people from being treated badly by their owners and he stopped them being made to go back to their home land in the West Indies. Sharp managed to get judges to agree that masters of slaves could not force a slave to go out of Britain. Sharp did not manage to get slavery or the slave trade abolished, but he had started the campaign against slavery. A black youth who was queuing for free medical help, with a badly swollen head,

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