Gustavus Vassa Writes to a Friend


This letter from Olaudah Equiano to a friend is held by The National Archives. It gives an insight into his concerns and interests, showing his anti-slavery activities during a trip to Scotland. Equiano writes that it has wrongly been stated in the press that he comes from Santa Cruz, a Danish island in the Caribbean, and this has interfered with sales of his book. The letter is full of details of Equiano's life: here is a man who has a position in society. He is an entrepreneur, and travels around the country lecturing and making influential connections. He also has valuable possessions (a brooch was misplaced in a hotel room). The letter is signed 'Gustavus Vassa The African', Gustavus Vassa being Equiano's baptismal name.

TS 24/12, f. 2 (28 May 1792)

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