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The National Museum of African American History and Culture and the Slave Wrecks Project Unveil Objects from Sunken Slave Ship

June 1, 2015

As the result of a unique global partnership among museums and research institutions, objects from a slave ship that was shipwrecked off the coast of Cape Town, South Africa in 1794 will be on long-term loan to the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture. The discovery of the ship marks a milestone in the study of the trans-Atlantic slave trade and showcases the results of the Slave Wrecks Project, a partnership that includes NMAAHC and six partners in the U.S. and Africa.

Related photos: 

Slave Wrecks Project: São José artifact image 1

Iziko Museums

Copper fastenings and copper sheathing recovered from the São José slave ship wreck. The copper fastenings held the structure of the ship together and the sheathing provided exterior protection for the vessel.

Photo courtesy Iziko Museums

 

Slave Wrecks Project: São José artifact image 2

Iziko Museums

Iron ballast recovered from the São José slave ship wreck undergoing treatment. The ballast was used to weigh down the slave ship and its human cargo.

Photo courtesy Iziko Museums

Slave Wrecks Project: São José site image 1

Susanna Pershern, U.S. National Parks Service

Underwater archaeology researchers on the site of the São José slave ship wreck near the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa.

Photo by Susanna Pershern, U.S. National Parks Service

Slave Wrecks Project: São José site image 2

Susanna Pershern, U.S. National Parks Service

Site of the São José slave ship wreck near the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa.

Photo by Susanna Pershern, U.S. National Parks Service

Slave Wrecks Project: São José underwater archaeology image 1

Iziko Museums

Underwater archaeology researchers on the site of the São José slave ship wreck near the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa.

Photo courtesy Iziko Museums

Slave Wrecks Project: São José underwater archaeology image 2

Iziko Museums

Underwater archaeology researchers on the site of the São José slave ship wreck near the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa.

Photo courtesy Iziko Museums

Slave Wrecks Project: “Table Bay Cape Town”

Pam Warne / Iziko Museums

“Table Bay Cape Town”
Thomas Luny (1759-1837)

Table Bay in the 1790’s, Oil on panel, Iziko Social History Collections


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