Slavery and the British Country House | English Heritage

Jeanette Leuers
University of Nottingham

“Echoes of slavery…
The Stately Home Connection”
I could not ever believe that those families responsible for the enormous buildings (often promoted by orgs eg The National Trust) called ‘stately homes’ in UK, – had been built without income from some of the most vile business transactions in the history of the world. ie The buying, selling and ill treatment, of human beings.

In fact – Very interested for a long time – in the History of any social group, as taught and upheld by its own culture – versus ‘History’ of the same group/culture – viewed by other cultures – (as friend or foe).

Always wary of the potential for inaccuracies in ‘self narration’ I have searched for quite a while to discover the extent of the English connection to the international slave trade and have been surprised to find such connections (which must have been abundant) hard to trace. A book published this year may answer some questions.

“This book, authored by a range of academics and heritage professionals, grew out of a 2009 conference on ‘Slavery and the British Country house: mapping the current research’ organised by English Heritage in partnership with the University of the West of England, the National Trust and the Economic History Society. It asks what links might be established between the wealth derived from slavery and the British country house and what implications such links should have for the way such properties are represented to the public today.”

Slavery and the British Country House | English Heritage
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