WH and the Black Atlantic - Historic Places Days

WH and the Black Atlantic

L'Anse-au-Loup, Newfoundland and Labrador
Archaeological Sites
Waterfront Rd, L'Anse-au-Loup, NL A0K 3L0, Canada
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The remains of WH were found in L’anse au Loup in the 1987 raising the tantalizing questions who was he, what brought him there and what was the cause of his demise. Today, almost 40 years later, our shifting focus to Blacks in the maritime economy helps contextualize how WH ended up in the Strait of Belle Isle. From his physical remains, he appears to have been in a more privileged position in terms of hard labour. This would fit with the trend of having Black cooks and stewards aboard ship. He may have also been a musician, though there are no remains of instruments associated with him. In terms of origins, both Britain and the United States employed large numbers of Blacks; between 10 and 20 percent. Or WH could be a merchantman. Maybe even a crew member of Paul Cuffee’s all Black whaling fleet out of the Boston area. To date, no DNA analysis has been conducted on WH’s remains to tie him into the broader Black Atlantic, which when complete, should prove very interesting.


“INVESTIGATING ‘WH’: A NINETEENTH CENTURY BURIAL FROM L’ANSE AU LOUP, LABRADOR on JSTOR.” Accessed September 16, 2023. https://www-jstor-org.proxy.hil.unb.ca/stable/41102572.


Cruikshank, George. A Sailors Description of a Chase and Capture. 1822. Hand coloured engraving. The Stapleton Collection. https://www.mediastorehouse.com/fine-art-finder/artists/george-cruikshank/sailors-description-chase-capture-pub-23110848.html.



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Waterfront Rd, L'Anse-au-Loup, NL A0K 3L0, Canada
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