John Newton – Early Life & the Slave Trade

Charting John Newton’s childhood, experiences at sea, participation in the slave trade & courtship of Polly. Explore how a storm at sea affected his life & his journey from slave ship captain to abolitionist.

This room documents the slave trade of the 18th century, John’s own involvement as a slave ship captain; and how in his final years he sought to support the Anti-slavery campaign and became a mentor to William Wilberforce, the voice of the abolition movement in Parliament.

‘I hope it will always be a subject of humiliating

reflection to me, that I was, once, an

active instrument, in a business at which my heart now shudders.’


Artefacts to find in this room

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Book Museum Tickets

Our Museum building remains CLOSED.  We are opening our gardens on limited entry.  The Cowper & Newton Museum gardens will be open to welcome you on Wednesday 5th August 10.30 – 12.15 and Saturday 8th August 10.30 – 12.15

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