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The history of slavery in 8 key dates

1604

Arrival of Mathieu da Costa with Samuel de Champlain.
A black free man, interpreting between Natives and Europeans

1629

Olivier Le Jeune arrives in Quebec City. He is the first African slave living in Canada.

1733

Mathieu Léveillé, a slave from Martinique, is the executioner of New France.

1734

The slave Marie-Joseph-Angélique is executed by the latter for having set fire to part of the city of Montreal.

1764

The Quebec Gazette is founded by William Brown; the first ads for slave-for-sale and runaway slaves are published shortly after.

1798

Jane Cook's slave Charlotte escapes. Judge James Monk refuses to convict her, citing a legal loophole over the status of slavery. He refused to punish all runaway slaves who were later reported to him, which prompted the end of this practice in Lower Canada (Quebec) at the beginning of the 19th century.

1834

Formal abolition of slavery in the British Empire. Slavery had ceased about 30 years before in Lower Canada.

1865

Abolition of slavery in the United States following the American Civil War. In the 60 years between the abolition of slavery in British North America and the United States, more than 30,000 american slaves found refuge in Canada through the Underground Railroad.

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