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Last Updated: Sunday, 19 August 2007, 10:14 GMT 11:14 UK
Amistad ship sails into city dock
Freedom Schooner Amistad (Copyright Amistad America)
More than 10 million Africans were transported
A replica of the 19th Century slave ship, Amistad, is due at Liverpool docks as part of a 22,500km (14,000 mile) voyage.

The journey, which retraces the route of the slave trade, commemorates the 200th anniversary of the abolition of the slave trade in the British Empire.

Its visit is part of a series of events leading to Liverpool's International Slavery Museum opening on Thursday.

The ship is expected to arrive in Liverpool docks on Sunday afternoon.

On board will be four students from the former slave ports of London, Liverpool and Bristol who have helped to sail the ship across the Atlantic from her launch in New Haven, Connecticut, on 21 June.

Former Deputy Prime Minister and Cunard steward John Prescott MP is also set to tour the ship while it is docked in Merseyside.

Film adaptation

The Amistad, which arrived in Falmouth last Wednesday, is continuing its historic Atlantic Freedom Tour to mark the bicentenary of the Abolition of the Slave Trade Act.

From Liverpool it will then sail to Bristol and London.

During its stay in each port, the Amistad will be open for visits and lectures from the crew.

The history of the Amistad, whose name in Spanish means "friendship", was depicted in the film of the same name directed by Steven Spielberg in 1997.

It told the story of the ship in 1839 on which 53 slaves mutinied.

Slave trade 'triangle'

Although they were captured, they managed to win their freedom in a historic legal battle.

The replica of the Amistad is expected to take 16 months to retrace the slave trade triangle, which saw European traders export manufactured goods to West Africa, where they would be exchanged for slaves.

The slaves were then transported across the Atlantic and sold for huge profits in the Americas.

Traders used the money to buy raw materials such as sugar, cotton, coffee, metals and tobacco, which were shipped back to Europe.

When it leaves the UK the Amistad will sail to Lisbon, Madeira, Senegal and Sierra Leone, the west African home of the original slaves, before returning to the US in 2008 via the Caribbean.

Route of the Freedom Schooner Amistad in 2007 and 2008

Amistad tour ship arrives in UK
08 Aug 07 |  Cornwall
Amistad ship retraces slave route
21 Jun 07 |  Americas


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