The Transatlantic Slave trade tookplace from the 16th century till the 19th in which ships filled with enslavedAfricans were taken to foreign land where they were forced to work. Europeancountries were part of the slave trade because they needed the Africans tobuild colonies in the Americas. They were mostly shipped to Brazil, the Caribbeanand the Spanish empire. By the 18th century, Britain was dominatingthe slave trade. In fact, the British were responsible for the misplacement ofaround 2 to 3 million Africans during the 18th century alone. Manyslaves also remained in Europe in countries like France, Portugal and England.
Thiswas also known as the Triangular Trade since it involved 3-sided trips fromEurope to Africa, Africa to the Americas and then back to Europe. Alcohol, textiles and guns are someof the items that the British traded and got African slaves in return. Theseslaves would work in mines and tobacco and sugar plantations in America. Europeansneeded skilled workers with the stamina to work in these fields, which theirown locals lacked. The Africans were treated harshly during their slavery.
Theywould be captured and tied together on their journey to the western coast ofAfrica, where they would be put into ships and taken to America. The journey couldbe as long as 480 kilometers and many captives even died just on their way tothe coast. The journey itself across the Atlantic was also terrible because theAfricans were chained together and stayed in tight conditions with extreme heat.
This made good hygiene impossible and oxygen levels would also becomedangerously low, causing more deaths. The economy of Europe flourished due tothe slave trade since they were able to obtain many resources through the workof the slaves, but on the other hand African societies lost a lot of theirpopulation which damaged their economy. A total of around 12 to 15 millionAfricans forcefully left their homes due to the slave trade. As well as that, alot more men were enslaved rather than women so an imbalance was createdbetween the two sexes. The women that were enslaved were often victims ofsexual harassment. When the Africans were moved to foreign places such asAmerica and Europe, they brought along with them their culture and therefore inthe present day there are several African-origin people living in these areas.
Since theslave trade was considered unethical, many Americans started protesting againstit around the time of the American Revolution. Africans also resisted beingenslaved and one of the most famous incidents is the revolution in a Frenchcolony in 1791 in present day Haiti. This led to the formation of the firstconstitution that took the human rights of all into consideration, so it waseffective in reducing slavery.
After the Congress of the US imposed a lawagainst it in 1808, Caribbean smugglers were still able to keep the slave tradegoing until it finally ended by the Northern blockade of the South in 1861during the AmericanCivil War. In Britain, slavery was outlawed in 1833, and Braziliansstopped slavery in 1888.