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Abolition of Serfdom  

Alexander II

The defeat of Russia in the Crimean War (1853–1856) convinced the newly enthroned Alexander II (r. 1855–1881) of the need for fundamental reforms in his country. The first institution he ... More

Amulet containing passages from the Qur’an, worn by Muslim slaves who rioted in Bahia, Brazil  

João José Reis

Although slavery was not abolished in Brazil until 1888, slave revolts were frequent and remarkable for their ambitions, success, and diversity of participating elements. Two urban revolts ... More

First Inaugural Address  

Abraham Lincoln and Franklin Delano Roosevelt

In 1860, Abraham Lincoln (1809–1865), the Republican party candidate from Illinois, won the presidential election without carrying a single southern state. Although he had worked his way up ... More

Photograph of an enslaved Chinese coolie, Peru  

Anonymous

Chinese migration to Latin America was a major part of the pattern of mass migration streams across the world that typified the nineteenth century. “Coolies” (from the Urdu word kuli, or ... More

“What to the Slave is the 4th of July?”  

Frederick Douglass

Born the son of an unknown white planter and a black slave mother Frederick Douglass (1817–1895) was one of the most exceptional human rights leaders in American history. His fiery speeches ... More

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