• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How Reliable was Thomas Clarkson for Finding out About the Middle Passage?

Extracts from this document...


How Reliable was Thomas Clarkson for Finding out About the Middle Passage? Thomas Clarkson was born in Wizbech in 1870, and became interested in slave trade later on in his life. Him and a few others eventually managed to abolish it. Clarkson came to think about slave trade with an open mind. This makes him a reliable source because he didn't think much of the slave trade until he had to find evidence for his essay. This means that he didn't think it was good or bad until he found good, clear evidence, which shows he wasn't one sided. He also interviewed 20,000 sailors who were in this trade. This means he heard the same thing hundreds of times which gave him good evidence from his research. So this is obviously saying he is a reliable source as he has researched his facts to make sure they are true. Clarkson did a lot of research around the world. He gathered equipment on board the ships such as whips and knives, and interviewed many people in the trade. ...read more.


He also says that it was stinking below decks. Source A backs up what he said, as it says there was a "stench and bad air". I think this source is accurate as the man who wrote it was a doctor and travelled on four slave ships. This means he knows what he was talking about when it came to the illnesses and he had the experience of actually being on the ships, whereas Clarkson didn't. Another point that he made was that they were treated badly, for example cut up or "mangled". But, in source D John Newton says that he washed his slaves with freshwater rather than salt water, which is more caring as they are likely to have cuts, burns and blisters so the sea salt would be painful. But John Newton was a slave trader and had said this before he became a Christian, so he may be lying. Plus if there was plenty of salt water and not as much fresh water, he probably did not want to use up the freshwater on washing the slaves. ...read more.


Clarkson says that a few slaves attempted, and some succeeded suicide. In source H, it says that "death was more preferable than life". Cugoano was kidnapped as a child and sold as a slave, so is writing from his own account. This makes him more trustworthy as he experienced it, and other sources also agree. He also said that many slaves died onboard the ship because of bad health. In source J it says "the air was unfit for breathing and bought on a sickness among the slaves". This was written by Olaudah Equiano who was describing his journey on the middle passage when he was 11 years old. I trust this source because he had been through this ordeal himself and wouldn't devote his life to abolishing the slave trade if he was lying about it being so terrible. In conclusion I think that Thomas Clarkson is reliable for finding information about the slave trade. This is because many other sources agree with him, and they wont be saying the same thing for no reason, and his background makes him more trusting too. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE History Projects section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE History Projects essays

  1. Titus Salt and Saltaire.

    Q3) Do you think Saltaire was a substantial achievement? At the time Saltaire was a breath of fresh air for workers. This meant clean air, a proper place to live, and a wage guaranteed every week. The new workers could hardly complain. In Bradford, living and working conditions were very poor.

  2. Am I not a Man and a brother?

    and Miss Mary to wait for him to come back from his extra works. Once, Sam failed to meet Master John on time, Master John was furious at the time and intended to send Sam back to the sugar field; Sam at once fell onto his knees and begged Master

  1. How Reliable is Schindler's List As A Representation of the Holocaust?

    This casual attitude towards something so horrific is typical of the SS officers' attitude towards Jews at that time. In fact, Gilbert claimed that this was a 'favorite sport' of the officers. Source 15, Turkel, gives us some information on the cruelty that the Jews suffered on a regular basis.

  2. How reliable and useful is the evidence about Stoke Bruerne?

    It quotes "local lore has it that the tunnel collapsed, but no documentary proof is available." So this obviously makes this a controversial piece of evidence. I was a bit sceptical about the Blisworth Tramway as when we went there I did not know it existed until we were told were it used to be.

  1. Culture Wars: Forster's A Passage To India

    The British attitude of superiority makes it difficult for the two cultures to connect. Any culture that assumes it is better than another is both insulting and distancing itself from the culture viewed as lesser because the "superior" culture is refusing to accept and understand the other culture.

  2. What impressions do you receive from this passage of the four English characters involved? ...

    Thus he divests himself of all responsibility of Aziz's nerves, which had begun as a result of Ronny's exceedingly rude neglect of admitting Aziz's presence, much less conversation. It would seem in this extract, therefore, that Ronny characterizes the typical Anglo-Indian in his adoption of the 'party-line' in terms of attitude and behaviour.


    Women worked the same as men. > HOW WAS BRISTOL RELATED Bristol's port was the second largest in England after London and as it is near to the river side it has been an important location and has acted as centre for various traders from ages ago.

  2. Was Oystermouth Castle typical of the castles built in Wales during the middle Ages?

    This is a secondary source, and even though it's secondary and may be incorrect, it gives us an idea of Oystermouth Castles appearance, as appeared to just text. This picture shows it built on a hill, with strong foundations on the western ridge.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work