Shocking history

Climbing out  of the town of Ouro Fino you pass by a series of statues set at intervals along the Caminho. All in a modern style

That they were all saints was obvious.  But It took me a while (and a check with Wikipedia) to fathom the connection

They were all black. They include Saint Bakita. A Sudanese girl sold into slavery and forced to march barefoot across the desert for 600  miles


Rather an apt image for the Caminho

I think I know why they chose these saints

The slave trade in Brazil was huge. In this part of Brazil they worked in the diamond mines of Minas Gerais.
At first the Portuguese colonists enslaved the indigenous peoples
One slave raid into the interior netted 60,000 captives

As sugar became the major export crop then the unholy African slave trade produced the manpower for the  plantations

The average slave died at 23. That was four years older than the average indigenous slave

By 1819 the population of Brazil was 3.6 million.     slaves accounted for a third of that. By 1825 they made up 56 per cent

A year later the government approved a treaty saying it was illegal to have anything to do with the slave trade

But then the coffee industry took off and this progressive move seems to have been quietly forgotten

It’s believed almost 5 million slaves were shipped from Africa to Brazil
It wasn’t outlawed until 1880   That was 15 years after the end of the American Civil War

Hard to  credit really


One thought on “Shocking history

  1. Boy Oh Boy!!! You are such an observer. I purposely did not tell you about this because I was just waiting to see your perception. Good boy you are.

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