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The global processes unleashed due to the European maritime exploration and commercial activities as from 1500 AD onwards affected indigenous peoples and cultures of the Atlantic world. In West Africa, the European presence precipitated the Atlantic slave trade, which involved the exportation of millions of Africans into slavery. In the nineteenth century a so-called legitimate trade in colonial agricultural commodities replaced the Atlantic slave trade. As a result, the Danes established agricultural plantations on the Gold Coast and exported tropical crops for processing and consumption in Denmark and the West Indies. Enslaved Africans were used by the Danes to cultivate the plantations in the foothills of the Akuapem Mountains and along the estuary of the Volta River. This paper combines information from written sources, ethnography, oral information and archaeology to investigate the living conditions of the enslaved workers on the plantations. The archaeological data was recovered from the Frederiksgave plantation at Sesemi near Abokobi in the Akuapem Mountains of southeastern Gold Coast (Ghana).

In: Journal of African Archaeology