Advertising Bill for Abolition

This advertising bill, or poster, announces a public meeting to be held by the Constable, Joseph Gosnay, on 10 November 1830 in Wakefield, Yorkshire. The people of Wakefield are encouraged to attend to discuss whether the town should petition the King and Parliament for the abolition of slavery in the colonies. The campaigners for abolition needed the support of mass public opinion, and encouraged the setting up of local groups throughout the United Kingdom. The meeting advertised here, organized by the local authorities in Wakefield, was the result of petitioning by one such local group. Those who requested it are listed on the top half of the poster. People joined anti-slavery groups for different reasons. Some had strong religious and moral views, and disagreed with the idea of slavery itself. Many women and those of the lower-middle and working classes identified with the cause as they lacked political rights and had empathy with the plight of the enslaved on the plantations.

© National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, UK

Accession reference: National Maritime Museum, ZBA2508