Table of Contents
Conference Proceedings

List conferences




An Economic Middle Ground?: Anglo/African
Interaction, Cooperation and Competition
at Cape Coast Castle in the Late Eighteenth
Century Atlantic World

Ty M. Reese
Indiana University of Pennsylvania


            In 1776, Adam Smith wrote:
The commodities of Europe were almost all new to America, and many of those of America were new to Europe.  A new set of exchanges, therefore, began to take place which had never been thought of before, and which naturally should have proved as advantageous to the new, as it certainly did to the old continent.  The savage injustice of the Europeans rendered an event, which ought to have been beneficial to all, ruinous and destructive to several of those unfortunate countries.1

This profound statement concerning the economic integration of the Atlantic World, and the foundations of globalization, cuts to the heart of the current debates surrounding these economic processes.  Why, over a long period of time, has a minority prospered while the majority has not?  The historiographical idea of an Atlantic World provides a cross-cultural, trans-national and comparative framework in which to study the consequences of economic integration upon diverse peoples.  As a historical subject, the traditional view of the Atlantic centers on its role as an economic environment.  Commencing with the mercantilists of the seventeenth century, through the free traders and capitalists of the eighteenth, Karl Marxs writing of the nineteenth, along with those who have expanded and debated his ideas, and arriving at recent world system theories, the Atlantic remains the domain of merchant capitalists, commodities, markets of both goods and labor, cores, peripheries, supply and demand, and an economic center allowing for the creeping development of capitalism.  By explaining the Atlantic World in strictly economic terms, its reality has been lost among a sea of economic abstractions.  These contemporary theories illustrate that their dependency upon abstract explanations of an Atlantic economy, within the rise of capitalism, distorts the true reality of the Atlantic World.  Instead of viewing the eighteenth century Atlantic World as yet another trade route it must be viewed as what it really was in this period of human and material diffusion.  The regions of the Atlantic were more than generators of wealth; they were a social, economic, political, cultural, ideological, violent yet creative crossroads between old and new, motherland and colony, European, African and Native American.

            The abstraction of the Atlantic World is expanded by scholars who view it as a vital element in the social, economic and jurisdictional expansion of Europe from the fifteenth to nineteenth centuries.2  This Atlantic World evolves from merchants and invisible forces striving for profit along with the consequences of this insatiable search for wealth.  The issue that arises is did the Atlantic World/Economy function in such an organized and efficient manner and if it did, why.  Most explanations of the Atlantics economic functioning distorts the reality of the creation of wealth throughout the Atlantic and the amount of people whose livelihood depended upon trade within the Atlantic World.  This economically abstracted Atlantic does not reflect the true Atlantic World, which developed and prospered on the blood and sweat of countless, and forgotten, laborers, both free and unfree, sailor and servant, slave and dockworker.  The ships and people moving throughout the Atlantic were not only a forgotten part of a functioning economy but an intricate part of something bigger.  They created a new world which brought together English Puritans, Irish laborers, African slaves, disease stricken Native Americans and countless others in an emerging socio-economic system dominated by those with the capital and means to make money.

            While people, ships and the new societies being created remain visibly absent in these theories the one unifying element contained in all is their explanation, and justification, for the rise of Europe in world affairs.  For many, the Atlantic explains and justifies Europes rise to world domination while offering insights into how this growing system could be improved.  The stress on Europes economic rise ignores the people of other continents, in this case the indigenous people of Africa, and makes them passive participants in both their dispersal, development and sometimes destruction.  By examining the Atlantic in terms that extend beyond economics, the active participants of the Atlantic, be them Fante, Dahomey, Cherokee, Iroquois, Irish, English, German and countless others can be rediscovered and given credit for their toil and interaction.

            This paper focuses upon cultural interaction within the economic integration caused by the trans-Atlantic slave trade at Cape Coast Castle, on Africas Gold Coast, in the second half of the eighteenth century.  The commodities found in West Africa, brought there by European merchants to be exchanged for slaves, clearly shows the development of a global economy.  The problem is how, as West Africa is integrated into a developing Atlantic economy, do Africans fit in.3  Most of the economic role given to Africans stems from the examination of African merchants and middlemen directly involved in the slave trade.  The slave trade affected a extensive segment of West Africas population, not only those who became slaves or those who exchanged slaves, and the growing European presence in West Africa, sanctioned by the coastal African elite, created daily cultural interaction and economic opportunities.  This interaction and economic activity created an economic middle ground where Africans took advantage of the European companies, states and individuals who participated in the coastal slave trade.4  A cursory examination of this economic middle ground demonstrates that in the short term, within a localized framework, both sides could benefit from this integration yet, over the longue dur¹e, the balance would change.  This paper examines that brief, localized, period in which the African elite of Cape Coast and its environs, along with various free and unfree African laborers, benefited from this economic middle ground.

The Local Elite:

            On 10 October 1781, the Council of Cape Coast Castle reported to the London based African Committee:

That it is necessary from our present weakness to keep black men of power in our pay, that through their influence, we may live in peace and amity with the natives who would otherwise molest us, knowing we have not a sufficient force to protect ourselves.5

This is a succinct statement of the precarious position of the Company of Merchants Trading to Africa in West Africa and powerful statement concerning the role of the African elite within the slave trade and of their ability to dictate and control African/European interaction within cross-cultural trade.6  For the company at Cape Coast Castle, there existed a diverse group of African tribes, nations, peoples and states with whom amiable relations needed to be maintained.  The first group were the Fetue of Cape Coast followed by the expanding Fante and Asante states along with numerous other coastal groups.  Because Cape Coast Castle was the companys administrative center, it was the duty of the governor and his council to establish and maintain these relationships.  The governor interacted and cooperated with numerous Caboceers, Captains, Deys, Kings, Penyins and others who constituted the local African elite.  To maintain these relations, the company relied upon an elaborate series of presents, dashees and employment to remain in the Africans favor.  This interaction beyond the exchange of human commodities presented numerous opportunities to the coastal African elite. 

            One device the company utilized to appease the African leaders, and used by the African leaders to profit from the companys presence, was the giving of presents and dashees.  Depending upon the governor, the terms presents and dashees were often used interchangeably while, at other times, they made a distinction between presents, which they gave, and dashees, which the Africans demanded.  The giving of presents constituted an important part of English coastal diplomacy designed to placate the Africans and keep the slave paths open.  For several days in February 1751, the companys utilization of present giving is abundantly clear.  On the third, Acquah Entusseros, a messenger awaiting orders from Entuisseros, a caboceer, received one flask of rum while the people of Achamps received a present of ten gallons of rum for a judicial decision disallowing Mr. Stockwell from settling at Popo.  On the twelfth, Entuissero received a present of beer, a quarter pound of cheese and four pounds of fine sugar.  The total cost of this present was two gold ounces.7  On 29 January 1761, the company presented dashees to ¥make custom for his late Majesty George II.  Cudjoe Caboceer, the companys intermediary with the Fante and other local peoples, received two quarter barrels of gunpowder and eight gallons of rum valued at £8.  To draw a distinction, Cudjoe, an important local elite, received the same dashee that the entire town of Cape Coast received.8

            By examining the companys records we can learn who the local leaders were and how their relationship with the company benefited them.  The issues that we can not discover through the company records concerns how they utilized these commodities  within their own local society.  On 17 February 1761, John Currantee received a dashee of four pounds leaf tobacco while on the twenty-first the Cape Coast townspeople received four gallons of rum and half a Bast to ¥make custom at the funeral of Amroe Coffee late King of Cape Coast.  This was followed, on the twenty-eight, by a dashee to Ammoda, a Fante caboceer, who arrived at Cape Coast ¥to solicit Cudjoes Caboceers interest at the ensuing election of a Brassoe of Fante.  Ammoda received one Patna Chint, six gallons of rum, eight pounds of leaf tobacco and one quarter gross of long pipes.  In the following month, on the ninth, John Curantee received another dashee of eight pounds leaf tobacco while on the twenty-fourth, Appah Caboceer of Annamaboe and his messenger received two gallons of rum.9  When, in May 1761, Charles Bell Esquire became the new governor in chief of Cape Coast Castle dashees went to the following individuals and groups: Cudjoe Caboceer, the King of Fetue, George Banishee, the Cape Coast Penyins, the Cape Coast townspeople, the townspeople of Mumford and Queen Annes Point, the company slaves and the Guard.10

            Another way in which the African elite profited from the company was through company positions.  Cudjoe Caboceer, who in 1751 was employed as the companys caboceer and linguist, earned £72 per annum.11  In January 1761, Quow Assouso, Caboceer of Anishan, received his pay of twenty shillings per month in four gallons of rum.  In February, Sophe Acoun, Caboceer of Annaqua, received his twenty shilling per month pay in six gallons of rum while Ibram Finney, Caboceer of Amissa, received his pay in four gallons of rum.12  The company did not pay these men every month, rather in long intervals or whenever they demanded their pay.  On February tenth , Iroqouy, Prince of Asante, received his forty shilling per month pay, from December 1760 to March 1761, in eight gallons of rum, while four days later Amroe Coffee, King of Cape Coast, and Aggery Comsue, Caboceer of Abra,  received their twenty shilling pay.13  Others who received pay from the company included: the Feturah of Fetue, Aheneba, King of Fetue, the Dey of Fetue, John Currantee, Sir John Barleycorn and the Brassoes and Curranteers of the Fante.14 

            The most important African at Cape Coast was Cudjoe Caboceer, who, until his death in May 1776, played a vital role in creating and maintaining the companys relationship with the Fante and other local peoples.  When Governor Thomas Melvil oversaw the transfer of the Royal African Companys possessions to the Company of Merchants Trading to Africa he quickly learned of, and utilized, Cudjoes position at Cape Coast.  The missionary Thomas Thompson referred to Cudjoe ¥as the chief man of that place but ¥only to his wealth and influence as Cudjoe endorsed his brother, Amroe Coffee, as king.  Thompson mentioned Cudjoes fluent English and his ¥good knowledge of many things relating to the government and other affairs of England.15  While the company engaged Cudjoe in many trivial affairs, his most important role involved maintaining the profitable relationship between the company and the Fante, along with the various other coastal peoples.  In September 1752, when Melvil attempted to negotiate a political treaty with the Fante, the various caboceers demanded 1,000 bendies each to sign the treaty.16  In reaction, Melvil presented them with brandy and sent Cudjoe in to negotiate with each separately.  Cudjoes role in the treatys creation was indispensable and whenever issues arose with the Fante, Cudjoe negotiated for the companys benefit.

            Cudjoe benefited from the company through direct employment and in other imaginative ways. In 1767, during a time of intensive construction on the castle, Cudjoe recommended a group of laborers for hire.  The laborers initially worked hard but over time they became lax and troublesome.  As they gradually refused to work, the company received Cudjoes permission to dismiss them and he then collected their wages.  The governor quickly figured out that he had hired Cudjoes personal slaves as free laborers.17  In May 1776, when Cudjoe died, the company remembered him as their strongest African supporter and immediately concerned itself over his successor.18  This quickly subsided when Cudjoes brother, Caboceer Bothy, succeeded him.  Caboceer Bothy, along with Cudjoes son, Caboceer Aggerie — Captain of the towns black soldiers — would both prove ¥useful and loyal to the Company.19  Aggerie was called into action in April 1780, when the caboceers, penyins and townspeople arrived in the castles hall and demanded presents and dashees for the assumption of the new governor.  To rectify this dilemma, the company hired Aggerie at £50 coast money, plus presents, to appease the locals.20  The companys ability to maintain a strong relationship with the Cape Coast caboceers guaranteed its continued survival.

            A member of the African elite who played a different role than Cudjoe, yet took advantage of the companys presence, was Philip Quaque.  Quaques opportunity began when Thomas Thompson, a missionary with the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, decided to leave New York for West Africa.  While on the Gold Coast, Thompson wrote to the Society to inquire whether they would accept some African boys for schooling.  When Thompson received permission he spoke to Cudjoe Caboceer and received three boys — one was Cudjoes relative and the other two were sons of caboceers — to send to England.  One of these boys was Philip Quaque.21  Of the three, Quaque was the only one who survived his stay in England and in 1765 he was ordained and soon after ordered to the Gold Coast to serve as a missionary  When Quaque arrived at Cape Coast Castle in 1766, with his English wife, he started a school to educate mulatto boys and girls.  Education was not his only purpose and Quaque worked to proselytize the local population but found little support among the African population and only tenuous company support.  Quaque, like Cudjoe, was able to use the companys presence for his own development but they did so in very different ways.  Cudjoe, through his interaction with the company maintained and increased his position in the local community while Quaque, through his English schooling and ordination, changed as an African.22

Free and Unfree African Laborers:

            While the African elite most benefited from the opportunities presented from the companys presence, other elements of African society also benefited.  The companys major problem was its lack of manpower.  It used crimps in England to procure servants to fill the positions of soldiers and artificers but this forced indentured system could never acquire enough white laborers to fill the companys needs.23  The other major problem for these soldiers and artificers was the African environment where they readily succumbed to disease.  The seventeenth and eighteenth century belief that Africa was a White Mans Grave was not far from the truth.  To fill their need for laborers, to insure their presence on the Gold Coast and to create the proper faÆade of power, the company relied upon both free and unfree African labor.  The companys need to maintain its numerous coastal structures, along with loading and unloading vessels and communicating with its outposts and the various African leaders provided opportunities for the local African peoples.

            One important group of laborers that the company extensively utilized were the canoemen.  These were the local fishermen who understood the navigational issues of Africas coastline and its coastal river systems.  While Cape Coast Castle was the companys headquarters, it possessed forts and outposts for hundreds of miles along the West African coast and needed to both supply and communicate with them.24  The coastal waters of the Gold Coast were very shallow and most ships dropped anchor over a mile from shore.  Because of the shallow water, breakers were a destructive problem and many attempts by Europeans to bring small boats through these resulted in the vessel being capsized.25  The lack of a means of communication and supply, and the coastal navigational problems, made the canoemen vital to the companys success while providing these African laborers with a new way to make money. 

            The Cape Coast canoemen served the company for economic, political, diplomatic and administrative reasons and for their labor they received a wage — usually in the form of alcohol, tobacco or textiles.  These three commodity types served as a form of coastal currency.26  On 6 January 1761, the Annaqua canoemen received a dashee of a half gallon of rum ¥to encourage them to be expeditious in loading the companys boat with shells while on the thirteenth the Cape Coast fishermen received their twenty shilling per month pay in the form of twelve gallons of rum.  On 27 January 1761, the thirteen Annamaboe canoemen carrying Mr. Trinder received subsistence of two fathoms of tobacco.  On 7 February 1761, the company paid the Annaqua canoemen for carrying 216 hogsheads of shells to the company boats at the rate of five shillings per three hogsheads.  The canoemens total pay of £14 came in the form of: one Halfsay, two Niccannees, four single sheets and twelve gallons of rum.  On the twenty-first, three canoemen hired to carry corporal Thomas Miles to Annamaboe, where he was to become sergeant of that fort, received three quarters of a gallon rum in pay.  A gallon of rum in Cape Coast at this time was worth ten shillings making the canoemens pay seven shillings six pence.  On 31 March, seven canoemen who attended the H.M.S. Wollwich during its stay on the Cape Coast road received seven gallons of rum equal to a wage of ten shillings apiece.27

            The canoemen constituted the major source of free African labor utilized by the company but other groups found ways to profit from the companys presence.  The company continually hired free African laborers to assist in the building and maintenance of the castle and in doing various tasks around the castle.  The major problem for the company was when it received Cape Coast Castle from the Royal African Company it was in a decrepit state as it was built from earthen bricks and the rainy seasons had taken their toll.  Because of this, the company decided to rebuild the castle using mortar and limestone and this decision called for a large skilled and unskilled labor force.

            On 9 April 1761, the ¥mulatto tailors who made the companys flag received one gallon of rum for their toil.  On the same day, the townspeople received two gallons of brandy for their help in capturing a Gambia slave who escaped into the bush from the H.M.S. Centurion.  On the thirtieth, Dooma and Quamino, employed as ¥Black Butlers, received their twenty shilling per month pay in one Soot Romaul, one Guinea Stuff and one Cherriderry.  On 3 May, the townspeople received six gallons of brandy for ¥cleaning the watering pond in the garden while on the eleventh Aserry, the chapel servant, received his pay of ten shillings per month in the form of four gallons of rum.  On the fifteenth, Coffee Pea, the companys gold taker, received his twenty shilling per month pay in one gallon of rum and on the twenty-fifth the bricklayers, ¥for working extraordinary hours on the new buildings in the spur for these seven days past, received seven gallons of brandy.  The same bricklayers, for working ¥extraordinary hours for the next five days, on the thirtieth received four and one half gallons of brandy and four pounds of leaf tobacco.  When five casks of cowries fell into the water from a canoe, the townspeople received five gallons of brandy for helping to recover them and then, on the eighteenth, the townspeople received one Check for the two sheep stolen from them by a company slave.  On 30 June, the canoemen and laborers, the first for unloading the store ship Joshua and the second for carrying the goods from ¥the waterside into the castle, received 83 Ú gallons of brandy, 18 pounds leaf tobacco and 5 gross of Hunter Pipes for their toil.  Their total pay was £22 10s.28   

            Another source of African labor that the company utilized, and one which it was created to help facilitate the exchange of, was slave labor.  The company employed slaves in the same manner that it employed free laborers, as canoemen, skilled and unskilled laborers, and the extent of its free labor use was related to the numbers and condition of its slaves.  The unique thing about the companys use of slaves in West Africa was its difference with the American plantation system.  While the racial views held by the English servants are clearly seen in the companys records, their slaves received wages and many of the same rights as the companys free wage laborers.  On 15 May 1761, the company slaves, who had labored for an additional hour for five straight days, received five gallons of brandy as their reward.  The purpose of their labor was to prevent the new spur being built from being ¥damaged by the rains.  The appointment of Charles Bell Esquire as governor called for dashees for various local groups and individuals with the company slaves receiving eight gallons of brandy.  When the annual custom for the new yams arrived on 29 June, 1761, the slaves received six gallons of brandy and one quarter barrel of gunpowder.  On 4 July 1761, the slaves employed as bricklayers received seven gallons of brandy for ¥working extraordinary hours on the new building in the spur.  The company, on the thirteenth, exchanged a sorting worth £14 7s. 6d., for a slave canoeman named Quacoe Brunie for the companys use.  When Kattia, a company slave, died in early December the company provided one half gallon brandy and one single sheet to pay for the burial.29  

            On 31 March 1761, the company paid its slaves for their previous service, ranging from two to three months, a total of £459 2s. 6d. in rum and tobacco.  The slaves receiving pay included:

nine bricklayers, four blacksmiths, seven carpenters with one listed as being blind, seven carpenters boys, two armourers, five sawyers, nineteen laborers, four cooks, one drummer, one goldsmith, five armourers boys, one black Doctor, six chapel servants, one Doctors boy, one smith, four sailors, two bomboys, two drummers boys, three brickmakers, two coopers boys, two smiths boys, one boy listed as a ¥lunatick, one cooks boy, one gardener, one male slave listed as an ¥idiot, two canoemen bomboys, twenty-four canoemen, one gunners boy, four canoemen boys, four swimming boys, two coopers, one hundred and three ¥labouresses, two washerwomen and two doctress.30

This was a total of 236 slaves who received salaries ranging from five to thirty shillings per month with most males receiving between fifteen and twenty and most females receiving ten.  The slaves next received their pay on 30 June with 132 male and 111 female, many with children, paid £483 2s. 6d.  They received their pay in 515 fathoms of tobacco, 27 5/8 Checks, 594 ß gallons brandy, one Guinea Stuff and one Soot Romaul.  As the records never make it clear that the slaves are provided with food, and whenever they are sent out they are provided with subsistence, their pay most likely went to purchasing food.  This is supported by the custom that female slaves with children usually received higher pay than those without.  At the end of September, the slaves again received their pay.  This time the total was £475 15s.  Their last pay for the year, £508, came in December when they also received a present of nine gallons of brandy for Christmas.31

            In 1776, parliament, worried about how the company expended its annual monetary grants, ordered the governor and council of Cape Coast Castle to report on their expenditures for the previous six years.  The report submitted clearly demonstrates how various groups of Africans took advantage of the companys presence.  From 1770 to 1776, the company spent over £145,460.  The largest expenditure, over £59,243, was for ¥White Mens Salaries while ¥Black Men received over £7,426 in pay.  Africans profited through the wages received by the slaves, over £20,622, by free canoemen and laborers, over £6,741, through presents and dashees, over £10,628, palavers, over £1,884, and through the companys payment of ground rent and water custom, over £645.  Of the total, Africans received over £47, 940, close to one third of the companys total expenditure.  The report justified the reasons for these expenditures.  ¥Black Mens Pay was a necessary expense if the company hoped to accomplish anything while the slaves were necessary for maintaining the coastal trading infrastructure and for domestic duties.  The canoemen was an ¥unavoidable charge while presents and dashees were divided into customary and extraordinary presents.  The palaver expenditures were necessary to ¥encourage free and open trade and to resist the Dutch and their African allies while the rents and customs were unavoidable.32  The success of Englands slave trade depended upon the companys ability to maintain a profitable presence, and infrastructure, in West Africa.  The creation and maintenance of this infrastructure created an economic middle ground where various segments of the coastal African peoples benefited and controlled this European presence.


            In July 1751, Captain Derbyshire of the Liverpool slaver the Jenny, upset the balance of the coastal economic middle ground when he refused to pay the coastal price of ten ounces per male slave and offered only eight.  When Derbyshire refused to pay the coastal price, several Fante beat Derbyshire and then panyared five Englishmen and took approximately £2-3,000 in commodities from him.  Derbyshire, in turn, demanded ten male slaves for the beating he suffered and threatened to fire upon the Fante.  The Fante then demand that the English buy all of their slaves at the established coastal price or they would start to sell only to the French.  This volatile situation ended when the Jenny sailed from the coast with 430 Gold and Popol slaves that Derbyshire purchased at two ounces above coastal price.33

            As the above incident demonstrates, the economic middle ground established at Cape Coast Castle, and along the Gold Coast, was precariously balanced upon both sides understanding, and maintaining, their role in the relationship.  When Derbyshire refused to allow the Africans to dictate the terms of the trade, he upset the balance causing the governor and council of Cape Coast Castle to scramble in their attempt to find a solution to restore the relationship that they were instructed to maintain.  In the end, the Africans won and Derbyshire paid more for the slaves then if he would have initially accepted the African terms.  At this time the Africans, who sanctioned the European presence in West Africa, dominated the economic middle ground and, by controlling this economic relationship, the coastal African elite and laborers benefited from the European presence.  The economic middle ground created at Cape Coast Castle was but one moment in the history of cultural interaction in West Africa but it demonstrates that, at least for a short period of time, cross cultural trade benefited both sides in different ways.


1 Adam Smith, An Inquiry in the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, Vol. I, edited by R.H. Campbell and A.S. Skinner (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1976), 448.

2 See Bernard Bailyn, ¥The Idea of Atlantic History Itinerario Vol. 1 (1996): 19-44.

3 See John Thornton, Africa and Africans in the Making of the Atlantic World, 1400-1680 (Cambridge:  Cambridge University Press, 1992).

4 I have borrowed, and extended upon, the idea of a ¥Middle Ground from Richard White, The Middle Ground: Indians, Empires and Republics in the Great Lakes Region, 1650-1815 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1991).

5 Public Records Office (PRO), Kew, England.  Treasury Office, African Companies: PRO T70/152, Cape Coast Castle Council Minutes 1770-1781, 10 Oct. 1781, f. 52.

6 Philip Curtin, Cross Cultural Trade in World History (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1984).

7 PRO T70/425, Cape Coast Castle Journal for February 1750/1.

8 PRO T70/1016, Cape Coast Castle Day Book for February 1761, folio 9. To show the consistency in the companys expenditures to various Africans, many of the examples focus on the year 1761 (for no specific reason) yet the same issues are clear in each years Day books.

9 PRO T70/1016, for February, f. 13-15; for March 1761, f. 2. A Bast was most likely a plain calico while a Patna Chint was a painted cotton from India. 

10 PRO T70/1016, for May 1761, f. 8.

11 PRO T70/425, Pay Bill for Caboceers, Black Servants and Soldiers, February 1751.  Cudjoe continually received wages from the company until his death.

12 PRO T70/1016, for January, f. 5; for February, f. 11.

13 PRO T70/1016, for February, f. 12-13.

14 PRO T70/1016, for May, f. 3; June, f. 15.

15 Thomas Thompson, An Account of Two Missionary Voyages (London: Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, 1937), 34-5.

16 A bendies value was £8.

17 PRO T70/31, Inward Letter Book, Africa to England 1762-73, Governor Gilbert Petrie to African Committee, 31 June 1767, 237.

18 PRO T70/32, Inward Letter Book: Africa to England 1773-81, Governor David Mill to African Committee, 7 May 1776, 33.

19 PRO T70/32, Governor John Roberts to African Committee, 14 July 1780, 110-1.

20 PRO T70/152, Council Minutes, 27 April 1780, f. 28; and 17 May 1780, f. 35.

21 Thompsons account is found in his, Two Missionary Voyages.

22 F.L. Bartels, ¥Philip Quaque, 1741-1816 Transactions of the Gold Coast and Togoland Historical Society Vol. 1 No. 5 (1955): 153-177.  Margaret Priestleys, ¥Philip Quaque of Cape Coast in Philip D. Curtin ed., Africa Remembered: Narratives by West Africans from the Era of the Slave Trade (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1967) is helpful.

23 An example of the companys utilization of crimps is found in PRO T70/69, Correspondence of the London African Committee, 2 February 1764, 2.

24 The nature and history of the English, and other European, enclaves in West Africa is in A.W. Lawrence, Trade Castles and Forts of West Africa (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1964).

25 See Paul Erdmann Isert, Letters on West Africa and the Slave Trade:  Journey to Guinea and the Caribbean Islands in Columbia, translated and edited by Selena Axelrod Winsnes (Copenhagen: 1758; reprinted, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1992).

26 An examination of these commodities is found in chapter eight of Ty M. Reese, Toiling in the Empire: Labor in Three Anglo-Atlantic Ports, London, Philadelphia and Cape Coast Castle, 1750-1783 (Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Toledo, 2000)

27 PRO T70/1016, for January 1761, f. 2, 4, 7; for February 1761, f. 10,14; and for March 1761, f. 5A. A Halfsay was a woolen textile while a Neconne was an inexpensive calico with stripes.

28 PRO T70/1016, for April 1761, f. 12, 15; for May 1761, f. 2, 3, 5, 11, 17; and for June 1761, f. 21. A Soot Romal was an Indian handkerchief, a Guinea Stuff was a brightly colored and inexpensive cotton textile, a Cherryderry was a mixed textile of silk and cotton and a Check was a general plain weave textile.

29 PRO T70/1016, for May 1761, f. 5, 8; for June, f. 21; for July, f. 2, 7; and for December, f. 9.  The sorting exchanged for Quacoe Brunie in July included: one Long Ell (a long woven cloth), one Halfsay, one Soot Romaul, one Cherryderry, one Check, one Negannepaut (a piece good), one Bejutapaut (a piece good), one Chelloe (cotton cloth with stripes) and one Guinea Stuff.

30 PRO T70/1016, for March, f. 6-10.

31 PRO T70/1016, for June, f. 22-31; for September, f. 12-17; and for December, f. 16-24.

32 PRO T70/155, Report of Council of Cape Coast Castle, 1770-1776.

33 PRO T70/29, Inward letter Book, Africa to England 1751-53, Governor Thomas Melvil to African Committee, 11 July 1751, 1-2; and Melvil to African Committee, 23 July 1751, 6.


Copyright Statement

Copyright: © 2001 by the American Historical Association. Compiled by Debbie Ann Doyle. Format by Chris Hale.

Previous Table of Contents Next