The Irish Slave Trade: The Forgotten WHITE Slaves…


The Slaves That Time Forgot…




We’ve all been taught the horror’s of the African slave trade. It’s in all the school books and in plenty of Hollywood movies and has been shoved down our throats since Obama took office. But for some reason the largest group of slaves in the British Colonies in the 17th Century doesn’t get mentioned at all- the Irish.

They came as slaves: human cargo transported on British ships bound for the Americas. They were shipped by the hundreds of thousands and included men, women, and even the youngest of children.

Whenever they rebelled or even disobeyed an order, they were punished in the harshest ways. Slave owners would hang their human property by their hands and set their hands or feet on fire as one form of punishment. Some were burned alive and had their heads placed on pikes in the marketplace as a warning to other captives.

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We don’t really need to go through all of the gory details, do we? We know all too well the atrocities of the African slave trade.


But are we talking about African slavery? King James VI and Charles I also led a continued effort to enslave the Irish. Britain’s Oliver Cromwell furthered this practice of dehumanizing one’s next door neighbour.


The Irish slave trade began when James VI sold 30,000 Irish prisoners as slaves to the New World. His Proclamation of 1625 required Irish political prisoners be sent overseas and sold to English settlers in the West Indies.

By the mid 1600s, the Irish were the main slaves sold to Antigua and Montserrat. At that time, 70% of the total population of Montserrat were Irish slaves.

Ireland quickly became the biggest source of human livestock for English merchants. The majority of the early slaves to the New World were actually white.

From 1641 to 1652, over 500,000 Irish were killed by the English and another 300,000 were sold as slaves. Ireland’s population fell from about 1,500,000 to 600,000 in one single decade.

Families were ripped apart as the British did not allow Irish dads to take their wives and children with them across the Atlantic. This led to a helpless population of homeless women and children. Britain’s solution was to auction them off as well.

During the 1650s, over 100,000 Irish children between the ages of 10 and 14 were taken from their parents and sold as slaves in the West Indies, Virginia and New England. In this decade, 52,000 Irish (mostly women and children) were sold to Barbados and Virginia.

Another 30,000 Irish men and women were also transported and sold to the highest bidder. In 1656, Cromwell ordered that 2000 Irish children be taken to Jamaica and sold as slaves to English settlers.

Many people today will avoid calling the Irish slaves what they truly were: Slaves. They’ll come up with terms like “Indentured Servants” to describe what occurred to the Irish. However, in most cases from the 17th and 18th centuries, Irish slaves were nothing more than human cattle.

As an example, the African slave trade was just beginning during this same period. It is well recorded that African slaves, not tainted with the stain of the hated Catholic theology and more expensive to purchase, were often treated far better than their Irish counterparts.

African slaves were very expensive during the late 1600s (£50 Sterling). Irish slaves came cheap (no more than £5 Sterling). If a planter whipped, branded or beat an Irish slave to death, it was never a crime. A death was a monetary setback, but far cheaper than killing a more expensive African.

The English masters quickly began breeding the Irish women for both their own personal pleasure and for greater profit. Children of slaves were themselves slaves, which increased the size of the master’s free workforce.

Even if an Irish woman somehow obtained her freedom, her kids would remain slaves of her master. Thus, Irish mothers, even with this new found emancipation, would seldom abandon their children and would remain in servitude.

In time, the English thought of a better way to use these women to increase their market share: The settlers began to breed Irish women and girls (many as young as 12) with African men to produce slaves with a distinct complexion. These new “mulatto” slaves brought a higher price than Irish livestock and, likewise, enabled the settlers to save money rather than purchase new African slaves.

This practice of interbreeding Irish females with African men went on for several decades and was so widespread that, in 1681, legislation was passed “forbidding the practice of mating Irish slave women to African slave men for the purpose of producing slaves for sale.” In short, it was stopped only because it interfered with the profits of a large slave transport company.

England continued to ship tens of thousands of Irish slaves for more than a century. Records state that, after the 1798 Irish Rebellion, thousands of Irish slaves were sold to both America and Australia. There were horrible abuses of both African and Irish captives. One British ship even dumped 1,302 slaves into the Atlantic Ocean so that the crew would have plenty of food to eat.

There is little question the Irish experienced the horrors of slavery as much (if not more, in the 17th Century) as the Africans did. There is also little question that those brown, tanned faces you witness in your travels to the West Indies are very likely a combination of African and Irish ancestry.

In 1839, Britain finally decided on it’s own to end its participation in Satan’s highway to hell and stopped transporting slaves. While their decision did not stop pirates from doing what they desired, the new law slowly concluded this chapter of Irish misery.

But, if anyone, black or white, believes that slavery was only an African experience, then they’ve got it completely wrong. Irish slavery is a subject worth remembering, not erasing from our memories.

But, why is it so seldom discussed? Do the memories of hundreds of thousands of Irish victims not merit more than a mention from an unknown writer?

Or is their story to be the one that their English masters intended: To completely disappear as if it never happened.

None of the Irish victims ever made it back to their homeland to describe their ordeal. These are the lost slaves; the ones that time and biased history books conveniently forgot.


h/t American Kabuki


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Disqus Comments


  1. Xrucianus says:

    To “American Freedom Fighters”: I honestly can’t fathom the depth of hatred it would take to write & publish an article like this at a time like this. There’s no other reason to broadcast this piece in June of 2015, other than to use it as one more rock to throw at the black community; a Westboro Baptist placard to shout down the cries of the black community; a molotov cocktail to throw into our nation’s current racial hostilities. It’s demonic, not Sermon on the Mount logic. I refuse the blessing from the god you’re invoking both in your article and in your salutation.

    • “At a time like this”? I remember reading an article about this last year.

    • Sonny Daze says:

      This story should be told every day of the year, especially to white hypocritical guilt laden LIBTARDS !

    • psychicbloodbrother says:

      It doesn’t fit your marxist narrative does it? History is important and adds context to the discussion about human nature. Stop using the tenets of Christianity against Christianity in your emotionalist plea. You are obligated to tell the whole story if you are to get at the truth as you are obligated to follow the entire gospel not just the parts you agree with. The truth is the truth is the truth, and it shall make you free. Your comments are very well timed i might add.

      • Xrucianus says:

        So you’re arguing the spirit behind writing the above article was Christian love?

        • handgunnar says:

          So you’re arguing that pandering to racist thugs who have NEVER directly experienced the slavery that they use to justify their own racism, sloth, violence, and arrested cultural development is “Christian love”? You need to go back and study how Jesus spoke hard truths to those who needed to hear them, regardless of whether it hurt their feelings.

        • sorry but its not a zero-sum game. dismissing your point is NOT the same as defending the opposing (especially when there are many more he could support that the extremely biased and nitpicked one you chose for him)

      • Mark Culbertson says:

        the thing is that most of the stories of how bad the Aferican slaves were treated , when you dig down you find they narrated the actual Isish and scottisch slaves treatment as being the African treatment , great lies that they tell to miss lead plus the northern staes of the usa have tryed to erease slavery out of their history , when slavery is brought up I simply ask when you going talk about the dirty rotten slavery North then nobody says enything or shifts back to the south … the thing is no one today was a slave nor lived then , why is this up roar now 160 years later ??? If anyone says slavery affects them then they are in need of mental help and please get it. This actricle hits it right , the truth and the whole truth need to be taught .

    • handgunnar says:

      You are an unspeakable coward and a reprehensible racist agitator who should be ashamed of himself, if you had a discerning conscience capable of recognizing shame.

      • John Walker says:

        No disrespect to you sir or the cloth , but I do feel there is a revelence to this artical . If only to teach everyone that hatred and injustice effects us all .

    • Just Straight Shooting says:

      After reading your comments I have come to the conclusion that you are NOT a true man of God, but rather a wolf in sheep’s clothing, divisive and cowardly, rotting the minds of whoever will listen to to your lies and subversion.

      Titus 3:10New King James Version (NKJV)

      10 Reject a divisive man after the first and second admonition,

      You have been admonished by many in this thread and as the Lord directed in the verse listed above, you and your arguments of lies are rejected.

  2. A horrid chapter in English history, that should be told and remembered. However, starting off by saying:
    “We’ve all been taught the horror’s of the African slave trade. It’s in all the school books and in plenty of Hollywood movies and has been shoved down our throats since Obama took office.”, shows the author’s bias and his hatred of our President — how has Obama shoved the African slave trade down our throats? Had no one been aware of it prior to a black man becoming president? I appreciate bringing attention to the horror the Irish slave endured, but not at the cost of diminishing the African experience with slavery.

    • Just Straight Shooting says:

      Nobody is trying to “diminish” anything or any part of the history of black slavery. Rather, the point of this article is to point out the hypocrisy and outright lies of the race hustlers who try to paint the history of slavery as being ONLY blacks enslaved by whites. In reality very little of what people like obama, sharpton, jackson and the naacp teach about slavery is true at all, but rather composed of half truths, cherry picked “facts”, and outright lies. From listening to the rhetoric and false narrative spouted by these race hustlers most young, and ill informed people are led to believe that black africans were enslaved by white people because white people hate black people, which is simply NOT true, it is a blatant LIE concocted to enhance the deception they are propagating to sell their agenda.

      • Natalie Canning says:

        Very well said and the Truth about slavery for a change. Many white soldiers died for the freedom of the Black Slave, so this sickening rhetoric by Obama, Sharpton, Jackson and rest of their cronies is being well overplayed. Should make a movies so the world can see what the Irish lived in their lives. Many women of all nationalities were sent here as slaves to work in factories and were abused and raped by owners and bosses of these companies because they were owned by them. I know my Italian ancestors had to buy there freedom and suffered years of abuse working in sweat shops. Many becoming pregnant and being beaten until they lost the child they were carrying.

  3. Why no big deal about it? Because the Irish have gotten beyond it. It happened but there is nothing we can do about it now. Yes I am Irish and proud of it and yes I have always heard of the ” indentured servants” all of my life. Do most people know why there were so many Irish cops? Because it was such a dangerous and low job no one else would do it. There are many many things that happened to the Irish and many other nationalities but we don’t dwell on it. We get on with our lives and try to do better.

    • Natalie Canning says:

      Thank u Marge, as wrote above earlier, many nationalities were tried lower than slaves especially in the North. My Italian relatives had to buy their freedom and the women suffered many disgusting sexual atrosities but we kept moving and don’t burn our towns down and loot small businesses that can never recover.

  4. Why would I ever come back to this site to read anything? ‘ContentAd’ gave me ads that really don’t belong on such a site, trying to get apparently the mostly male readership to click on things like this? Seriously? You think I should consider you guys to be serious?

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  5. I believe it was wrong, but lets move on to the current problems and don’t forget the History, but move on to this century and time.

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