Chinese Slave Trade

April 18, 1856

An item from Atlas, tells of “The Slave Trade in a New Form.  The Journal of Commerce publishes a letter from Swotow, China.  The writer says that his ship, which was about to sail, had on board 700 coolies, and expected to take 200 more.  He does not conceal that they are kidnapped, and says they cost from $15 to $20 per man, and sell for $250.   A nice business, requiring, we think, immediate suppression.”  This brief item then leads to another longer article. Part of that article includes an assertion that one vessel engaged in this trade is owned by Howland and Aspinwall of New York, insured for sixty thousand dollars on Wall Street.  This article asserts that the British government, in abolishing the African Slave Trade, has substituted for it this Cooolie trade, and also includes a supposition that Northern men are engaged in this trade.