Google celebrates 272th birthday of Nigerian slave

Today, Google celebrates the 272nd birthday of Olaudah Equiano, a freed slave of Igbo extraction in Nigeria, who supported the British movement to end the slave trade

Popularly known in his lifetime as Gustavus Vassa, Olaudah was enslaved as a child.

After his freedom, his autobiography, which was published in 1789, helped in the creation of the Slave Trade Act 1807 which ended the African slave trade for Britain and its colonies

Equiano was a prominent Nigerian Writer, Activist and a trader who died on 31 March 1979. Although his gravesite is unknown till today. Equiano’s death was recognized in American as well as British newspapers.

Google celebrates Slave Equiano
Nigerian Slave Equiano

He gave the world one of its first accounts of the trade from a victim’s perspective.

Equiano formed an Anti-slave movement in 1780s that shed light on the tragic life of slaves, he settled in London, where in the 1780s he became involved in the abolitionist movement.

The movement to end the slave trade had been particularly strong among Quakers, but the Society for Effecting the Abolition of the Slave Trade was founded in 1787 as a non-denominational group, with Anglican members, in order to directly influence the.

At the time, Quakers were prohibited from being elected as MPs. Equiano had become a Methodist, having been influenced by George Whitefield’s evangelism in the New World.

Equiano had a stressful life; he had suffered suicidal thoughts before he became a Protestant Christian and found peace in his faith.

After settling in London, Equiano married an English woman named Susannah Cullen in 1792 and they had two daughters.

Plaques commemorating his life have been placed at buildings where he lived in London. Since the late 20th century, when his autobiography was published in a new edition, he has been increasingly studied by a range of scholars, including many from his homeland.

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