Vers. 15 - 68
Proves African Americans (Negroes)
are the true children of Israel
Jews and the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade
Hosea 4:6 My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge:
Spreading the Word
What role did the Jews have in the Slavery of "African Americans" (Hebrews)?? Yah said he would bring
the nations to the valley of JEHOSHAPHAT, and plead with them, because they have parted his land
and scattered Israel. The Jews have had a hand in both parting his land and scattering his people.
Our Challenge: We will publicly debate any "Bible Theologian" on the curses
of Deuteronomy 28 to determine which group of people fit these curses!
The True Name Of God (Yah)
"Jews also took an active part in the
Dutch colonial slave trade; indeed, the
bylaws of the Recife and Mauricia
congregations (1648) included an
imposta (Jewish tax) of five soldos for
each Negro slave a Brazilian Jew
purchased from the West Indies
Slave auctions were postponed if they
fell on a Jewish holiday. In Curacao in
the seventeenth century, as well as in
the British colonies of Barbados and
Jamaica in the eighteenth century,
Jewish merchants played a major role
in the slave trade. In fact, in all the
American colonies, whether French
(Martinique), British, or Dutch, Jewish
merchants frequently dominated.
Jewish involvement in Black slave trade to the
The following passages are from Dr. Raphael's book Jews and Judaism in the United
States: A Documentary History (New York: Behrman House, Inc., Pub, 1983), pp. 14, 23-25.
"This was no less true on the North American mainland, where during the eighteenth century Jews
participated in the 'triangular trade' that brought slaves from Africa to the West Indies and there
exchanged them for molasses, which in turn was taken to New England and converted into rum for
sale in Africa. Isaac Da Costa of Charleston in the 1750's, David Franks of Philadelphia in the
1760's, and Aaron Lopez of Newport in the late 1760's and early 1770's dominated Jewish slave
trading on the American continent."
Dr. Raphael discusses the central role of the Jews in the New World commerce and the African slave
trade (pp. 23-25):
SEVENTEENTH AND EIGHTEENTH CENTURIES JEWISH INTER-ISLAND TRADE: CURACAO, 1656
During the sixteenth century, exiled from their Spanish homeland and hard-pressed to escape the
clutches of the Inquisition, Spanish and Portuguese Jews fled to the Netherlands; the Dutch
enthusiastically welcomed these talented, skilled husinessmen.
While thriving in Amsterdam - where they became the hub of a unique urban Jewish universe and
attained status that anticipated Jewish emancipation in the West by over a century - they began in
the 1500's and 1600's to establish themselves in the Dutch and English colonies in the New World.
These included Curacao, Surinam, Recife, and New Amsterdam (Dutch) as well as Barbados,
Jamaica, Newport, and Savannah (English).
In these European outposts the Jews, with their years of mercantile experience and networks of
friends and family providing market reports of great use, played a significant role in the merchant
capitalism, commercial revolution, and territorial expansion that developed the New World and
established the colonial economies. The Jewish-Caribbean nexus provided Jews with the opportunity
to claim a disproportionate influence in seventeenth and eighteenth century New World commerce,
and enabled West Indian Jewry-far outnumbering its coreligionists further north-to enjoy a centrality
which North American Jewry would not achieve for a long time to come.
Groups of Jews began to arrive in Surinam in the middle of the seven-teenth century, after the
Portuguese regained control of northern Brazil. By 1694, twenty-seven years after the British had
surrendered Surinam to the Dutch, there were about 100 Jewish families and fifty single Jews there,
or about 570 persons. They possessed more than forty estates and 9,000 slaves, contributed
25,905 pounds of sugar as a gift for the building of a hospital, and carried on an active trade with
Newport and other colonial ports. By 1730, Jews owned 115 plantations and were a large part of a
sugar export business which sent out 21,680,000 pounds of sugar to European and New World
markets in 1730 alone.
Slave trading was a major feature of Jewish economic life in Surinam which as a major stopping-off
point in the triangular trade. Both North American and Caribbean Jews played a key role in this
commerce: records of a slave sale in 1707 reveal that the ten largest Jewish purchasers (10,400
guilders) spent more than 25 percent of the total funds (38,605 guilders) exchanged.
Jewish economic life in the Dutch West Indies, as in the North American colonies, consisted primarily
of mercantile communities, with large inequities in the distribution of wealth. Most Jews were
shopkeepers, middlemen, or petty merchants who received encouragement and support from Dutch
authorities. In Curacao, for example, Jewish communal life began after the Portuguese victory in
In 1656, the community founded a congregation, and in the early 1670's brought its first rabbi to
the island. Curacao, with its large natural harbor, was the steppng-stone to the other Caribbean
islands and thus ideally suited geographically for commerce.
The Jews were the recipients of favorable charters containing generous economic privileges
granted by the Dutch West Indies Company in Amsterdam. The economic life of the Jewish
community of Curacao revolved around ownership of sugar plantations and marketing of sugar, the
importing of manufactured goods, and a heavy involvement in the slave trade, within a decade of
their arrival, Jews owned 80 percent of the Curacao plantations. The strength of the Jewish trade
lay in connections in Western Europe as well as ownership of the ships used in commerce. While
Jews carried on an active trade with French and English colonies in the Caribbean, their principal
market was the Spanish Main (today Venezuela and Colombia).
Extant tax lists give us a glimpse of their dominance. Of the eighteen wealthiest Jews in the 1702
and 1707 tax lists, nine either owned a ship or had at least a share in a vessel. By 1721 a letter to
the Amsterdam Jewish community claimed that "nearly all the navigation...was in the hands of the
Jews."' Yet another indication of the economic success of Curacao's Jews is the fact that in 1707
the island's 377 residents were assessed by the Governor and his Council a total of 4,002 pesos;
104 Jews, or 27.6 percent of the taxpayers, contributed 1,380 pesos, or 34.5 percent of the entire
An interesting record of interisland trade involving a Jewish merchant and the islands of Barbados
and Curacao comes from correspondence of 1656. It reminds us that sometimes the commercial
trips were not well planned and that Jewish captains - who frequently acted as commercial agents
as well - would decide where to sell their cargo, at what price, and what goods to bring back on the
return trip.(End of excerpt)
" Tony Martin has been forced to delve into the relationship between the Jews and Blacks and in
the process, he has distilled a work that is informative, fascinating and one which will heighten
the consciousness of Black people everywhere."
Subject: Who owned the slaving ships?
Name Of Slave Ships And Their Owners:
The 'Abigail-Caracoa' - Aaron Lopez, Moses Levy, Jacob Crown
Isaac Levy and Nathan Simpson
The'Nassau' - Moses Levy
The 'Four Sisters' - Moses Levy
The 'Anne' & The 'Eliza' - Justus Bosch and John Abrams
The 'Prudent Betty' - Henry Cruger and Jacob Phoenix
The 'Hester' - Mordecai and David Gomez
The 'Elizabeth' - Mordecai and David Gomez
The 'Antigua' - Nathan Marston and Abram Lyell
The 'Betsy' - Wm. De Woolf
The 'Polly' - James De Woolf
The 'White Horse' - Jan de Sweevts
Tony Martin (See video above) is an African studies professor at Wellesley College and has taught
at Wellesley College, Massachusetts since 1973. He was tenured in 1975 and has been a full
professor of African Studies since 1979. Prior to coming to Wellesley he taught at the University of
Michigan-Flint, the Cipriani Labour College (Trinidad) and St. Mary's College (Trinidad). He has
been a visiting professor at the University of Minnesota, Brandeis University, Brown University and
The Colorado College. He also spent a year as an honorary research fellow at the University of the
West Indies, Trinidad.