Skip to content

We ask you, humbly: don't scroll away.

Hi readers, it seems you use Catholic Online a lot; that's great! It's a little awkward to ask, but we need your help. If you have already donated, we sincerely thank you. We're not salespeople, but we depend on donations averaging $14.76 and fewer than 1% of readers give. If you donate just $5.00, the price of your coffee, Catholic Online School could keep thriving. Thank you.

Help Now >

Have the graves of the first African slaves been found?

Free World Class Education
FREE Catholic Classes
Archaeologists think they have discovered some of the first graves of African chattel slaves in the Canaries.

Archaeologists have identified the origins of some of the first slaves brought to the Americas. Researchers used DNA to confirm their findings.

Deacon Keith Fournier Hi readers, it seems you use Catholic Online a lot; that's great! It's a little awkward to ask, but we need your help. If you have already donated, we sincerely thank you. We're not salespeople, but we depend on donations averaging $14.76 and fewer than 1% of readers give. If you donate just $5.00, the price of your coffee, Catholic Online School could keep thriving. Thank you. Help Now >
An image from 1865 shows Africans being taken into slavery. One victim is being put to death arbitrarily, or for some unknown offense.

An image from 1865 shows Africans being taken into slavery. One victim is being put to death arbitrarily, or for some unknown offense.

Highlights

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)
Catholic Online (https://www.catholic.org)
1/18/2017 (3 years ago)

Published in Africa

Keywords: Canary Islands, African, slaves, graves, DNA


LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) -- Archaeologists researching slavery in the Americas have unearthed what may be the graves of the first slaves imported from Africa.

Excavating a site in the Canary Islands, the archaeologists discovered some of the graves contained the DNA of Africans. Specifically, they found four African men in the graves.


Following the Spanish conquest of the Canaries, the local population was exterminated though warfare, disease and enslavement. As the local population disappeared, the Spanish began importing Africans to the islands to work plantations there.

This importation launched the transatlantic slave trade that would continue until the early 19th century.

DNA tests revealed four of the graves belonged to the first African victims of the transatlantic slave trade.

DNA tests revealed four of the graves belonged to the first African victims of the transatlantic slave trade.


African slaves proved resistant to disease, which made them hardier than Native slaves who often died from the cocktail of European diseases.  Still, African slaves died in large numbers primarily because of their harsh working conditions and the poor diet afforded them.

The remains have been dated back to the 1500s, and have undergone DNA testing to confirm their origin.

The remains have been dated back to the 1500s, and have undergone DNA testing to confirm their origin.


On average, an African slave working the cane plantations in the Caribbean could expect to last for only about five years.

An archaeologist excavates a grave on the Canary Islands, thought to belong to one of the first African slaves.

An archaeologist excavates a grave on the Canary Islands, thought to belong to one of the first African slaves.


Although African chattel slavery, the most infamous slavery in history, has come to an end the practice remains common around the globe. Today there are more slaves than ever with an estimated 30 to 45 million people being kept as slaves in one form or another.

---


'Help Give every Student and Teacher FREE resources for a world-class Moral Catholic Education'


Copyright 2019 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Never Miss any Updates!

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers.

Catholic Online Logo

Copyright 2020 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2020 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.

Catholic Online is a Project of Your Catholic Voice Foundation, a Not-for-Profit Corporation. Your Catholic Voice Foundation has been granted a recognition of tax exemption under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Federal Tax Identification Number: 81-0596847. Your gift is tax-deductible as allowed by law.