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Black SaltSeafarers of African Descent on British Ships$
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Ray Costello

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9781846318184

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.5949/UPO9781846317675

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Sailortown Under Attack

Sailortown Under Attack

(p.153) Chapter Nine Sailortown Under Attack
Black Salt
Liverpool University Press

This chapter investigates the attack of British-born black seamen. One of the most troubled periods in the history of British black people was the year following the First World War. Disturbances in Liverpool, Cardiff and London involved black seamen. The 1919 riots mobilised and politicised black people living in Britain. The war had expanded to the black population in Cardiff. In Liverpool, black seamen were being thrown out of their lodgings into the streets. These seamen were also largely dependent on the fortunes of the British shipping industry. Claude McKay wrote to fight against continuing injustices towards him during his two years in Britain. An extract from a poem written by McKay shows the patriotic feeling of many colonial black sailors of the time.

Keywords:   black seamen, First World War, Liverpool, Cardiff, London, 1919 riots, Britain, Claude McKay

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