Swansea’s copper industry capitalised on the trade in humans.
By the mid-18th Century, Wales was the world centre of copper and brass production.
Industrialists who owned smelting and refining works in Swansea were intimately connected with Bristol and Liverpool slavers. The copper they produced was an essential bartering tool in the markets of the West and Central coast of Africa.
Traders in Africa were not satisfied with trinkets. African demand was very precise. Copper was used extensively as a decorative or a domestic material for pots, pans and for personal use.
It was essential in enabling traders to buy slaves.