A new exhibition focussing on the involvement of the middle classes in slavery opens at Museum of London Docklands today (14 November 2008).
Museum bosses say the exhibition is designed to expel “the myth that the archetypal slave-owner was sitting on a porch in the Caribbean surveying his plantations” and looks at the individuals and businesses of Marylebone who received compensation when slavery was abolished in the 1830s.
Dr Nick Draper, who researched the compensation awarded to slave owners in London, saiys: “It’s important that we recognise the ways in which slavery permeates London’s history, not only through direct slave-ownership by Londoners but also through more complex financial and commercial ties between the slave-system and people living and working in London.”
“Slavery was not the only influence on London’s development, but it was an important one, especially in areas such as Marylebone, and is too often overlooked.”
The exhibition runs until 31st March 2009 and is being hosted in the London, Sugar & Slavery gallery, the only permanent gallery in London dedicated to exploring the capital’s involvement in slavery.