Rough Crossings

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Rough Crossings: Britain, the Slaves and the American Revolution
Rough Crossings (book cover).jpg
Author Simon Schama
Language English
Publisher BBC Books
Publication date
Media type Print (book)
Pages 445
ISBN 0-06-053916-X
OCLC 61652611
326.0973/09033 22
LC Class E269.N3 S33 2006

Rough Crossings: Britain, the Slaves and the American Revolution is a history book and television series by Simon Schama.


Rough Crossings gives an account of the history of thousands of enslaved African Americans known as Black Loyalists who escaped to the British cause during the American War of Independence. It tells of the legal battles that established that slavery was not valid in England itself, and how the British government offered freedom to enslaved African Americans if they would fight for the king, George III. The book discusses the many ambiguities involved—some white Loyalists were slave-owners, some blacks were recruited for the War of Independence.

Rough Crossings then follows the fate of these African Americans who were sent to Nova Scotia (still a colony within British North America) and were treated unfairly there, including suffering the first race riots on the continent. Some stayed there and others settled in what was to become Sierra Leone. The descendants of those who settled in Freetown are known as the Sierra Leone Creole people. They have strong ancestral ties with the United States, Caribbean, and Canada.

In other media[edit]

In 2007 Headlong Theatre produced a stage adaptation, adapted by Caryl Phillips, on UK tour.[citation needed]

See also[edit]


External links[edit]