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The Catholic Church as Slave Trader

Take this tour and become acquainted with the church’s role in making a buck off the enslavement of Africans. Under the fraudulent pretext of “saving souls” and “civilizing” the native and African peoples, the church maintained a prominent position in determining the plight of the enslaved.

Slave trade map



In joint collaboration with the French and Spanish hierarchy, the church laid down the oppressive “Black Codes”, that maintained a legal noose around the necks of Africans. With vigorous zeal the church took pride in “humanizing” the slave by trying to wipe out the Africans’ culture. This included their religion, their language, and their art forms, like dance. This walk through old New Orleans visits some of the institutions responsible for these dirty deeds.


In 1809 the Ursuline nunnery in New Orleans offered a reward for the return of a runaway slave.