Colonel Gordon, R.E., C.B., and the Slave Trade in Egypt, the Soudan, and Equatorial Africa
British and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society
Abolition Campaigns;Travel Writings
John Rylands Library, Manchester
Slave Trade Egypt Sudan Africa Gordon Abolition Anti-Slavery Society
Based on extracts from the travel writings and letters of Colonel Gordon, the former British governor of the Sudan, this text, published by the British and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society, sets out the background to the new campaign against the slave trade in Egypt and the Sudan. It calls for the appointment of British consuls to establish control over the region, and a clear message from the British and French governments to be sent: "Let the Khedive and his people understand [...] that the Governments of England and France are now in earnest in their determination that this horrible scandal to humanity, this blot upon civilisation, shall at once and forever be put an end to" (9). Gordon's letters describe battles with rebel slave dealers, and trading routes lined with skulls. He suggests that up to two thirds of the population of Darfur had been enslaved, and that the Egyptian government was trying to "throw dust into the eyes of the civilised nations of Europe" (11).
Introduced by the British and Foreign Anti-Slavery Society, signed Joseph Cooper, Edmund Sturge, and Charles H. Allen (May 1880). Gordon's letters are supplemented with other sources of information, including missionary testimonials (Wilson and Felkin), citations from Sir Samuel Baker's Ismailïa: A narrative of the expedition to Central Africa for the suppression of the slave trade (London: Macmillan, 1874) and Schweinfurth's Heart of Africa, and a letter to the Anti-Slavery Society by a Swiss correspondent based in Cairo, dated 1 May 1880.