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  • Dreams of Africa in Alabama

  • The Slave Ship Clotilda and the Story of the Last Africans Brought to America
  • By: Sylviane A. Diouf
  • Narrated by: Allyson Johnson
  • Length: 12 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History, Americas

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Publisher's Summary

In the summer of 1860, more than 50 years after the United States legally abolished the international slave trade, 110 men, women, and children from Benin and Nigeria were brought ashore in Alabama under cover of night. They were the last recorded group of Africans deported to the United States as slaves. Timothy Meaher, an established Mobile businessman, sent the slave ship, the Clotilda, to Africa, on a bet that he could "bring a shipful of niggers right into Mobile Bay under the officers' noses." He won the bet. 

This book reconstructs the lives of the people in West Africa, recounts their capture and passage in the slave pen in Ouidah, and describes their experience of slavery alongside American-born enslaved men and women. After emancipation, the group reunited from various plantations, bought land, and founded their own settlement, known as African Town. They ruled it according to customary African laws, spoke their own regional language and, when giving interviews, insisted that writers use their African names so that their families would know that they were still alive.  

The last survivor of the Clotilda died in 1935, but African Town is still home to a community of Clotilda descendants. The original publication of Dreams of Africa in Alabama marked the 200th anniversary of the abolition of the transatlantic slave trade.

©2007 Oxford University Press, Inc. (P)2019 Tantor

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  • joshua a boyd
  • 11-12-2020

Author should have done more research

More research is needed into Black southern culture. The Arthur assumed the reason native born slaves rarely associated with the Clotilda human cargo was because they spoke a different language and had different ways. A native born slave would have been used to new transplants introduced all the time.
The case of Lewis's son having a reputation of working with law enforcement to catch other black men in an era of lynching would give him a bad reputation with the community. This is obvious to most African Americans, The Arthur made an assumption he would highly regarded in the black community after 6 months in jail for the murder of another black man.

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  • CJB
  • 25-11-2020

Most Important!

Of all the books I have listened to, this was THE most important book that I have read thus far. I highly recommend this book to ALL! I do not understand why there are not more ratings on this book. This is excellent and well told! Kudos to the narrator as well!

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