International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade: 18 Images of Revolt, Rebellions, and Sacrifices

Between the 16th and 19th century, slave traders took full advantage of barbaric behaviors. White Europeans stole, shipped, and enslaved millions of people against their will, for capitalist gains, and they did it with unimaginable horrors and violence.

Today is the International Day of Remembrance of the victims of the Trans Atlantic Slave Trade and The North Star is honoring a few of the ancestors who bravely fought back against the cruelty of captivity. Below is a slideshow of pictures to honor and remember those who died and experienced the horrors of the transatlantic slave trade.

  • The Trans Atlantic Slave trade motivated African leaders and soldiers to wage wars and disrupt villages all in capitol. This image depicts a raid of an African village. 'Capturing Slaves' 1893. Image from NYPL.

  • The horrifying castle at Cape Cost. Founded 1626 as the main shipping place for the slave trade. Image from NYPL.

  • Capture Of A Slaver. 1857. NYPL

  • The interior of a slave ship. Designed to hold bodies in captivity for months while travelling across the Atlantic Ocean. Slave Trade And 'Interior Of Slave Ship' Year Unknown. Image from NYPL.

  • A drawing of African people returning to an African seacoast A close look shows colonizers being carried on the backs of Black men. International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade 2020. ‘Return of the captured negroes to Africa, on board the U.S. steamship Niagara’ 1859. Image from NYPL.

  • The barbaric habits and actions of the British white men have not been matched at no other point in history. What happens when the victims have had enough abuse? The victims start to fight back. 'The American Slave' 1900. Image from NYPL.

  • [A depiction of] Captured people who had killed the captain and cook abroad a slave ship,... and ordered the sailors to navigate the ship to Africa. 1901 NYPL.

  • An Illustration of a group of captured Africans fighting back against the slave traders. 'Revolt aboard a slave-ship", Library Company of Philadelphia. Ca. 1883

  • Victim of the slave trade in New York revolted as early as 1712. "On the night of April 6, 1712, this came to head when a group of New York slaves took up arms and revolted against their captors." The Colonial NY Governor reported in 1712.

  • Nat Turner's Confession, title page. 1832. Image from The Library of Congress.

  • 'Nat Turner & his confederates in conference', 1863. Image from NYPL.

  • When Nat Turner organized fellow victims of the slave trade to rise up, and fight back. 'Horrid massacre in Virginia. 1831. Image from The Library of Congress.

  • Black farmers defending themselves against white men. 'Desperate Conflict In A Barn' 1872. Image from NYPL.

  • Toussaint Louverture, know as the leader of the Hatian revolt against white slave traders. Circa 1900-1950. Image from The Library of Congress.

  • ‘Panel from Diego Rivera's mural at Unity House, depicting the growing conflict over slavery that eventually led to the Civil War.’ Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, Martin P. Catherwood Library, Cornell University. Circa 1950.

  • ‘General revolt of the Negroes. Massacre of the whites.’ 1815. Library Company of Philadelphia.

  • ‘Passage of the amendment of the Constitution prohibiting slavery’ 1890. Image from NYPL.

  • A family of free blacks. Circa 1900. Image from The Library of Congress.

About the Author

Branden Janese is a creative and a writer. She lives uptown.