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Hanging Captain Gordon: The Life and Trial of an American Slave Trader

by Soodalter, Ron
Publisher: Atria Books
Retail Price: $26.00
Issue: Fall 2006
ISBN: 0743267273

While Captain Nathaniel Gordon's primary source of incomełthe capturing and selling of African slavesłwas an offense punishable by hanging, the United States government had never sentenced anyone to death for slave trading. This fact changed in late February 1862, when Gordon was hanged after being found with 897 slaves near the mouth of the Congo River two years previous. As author Ron Soodalter reveals, however, Gordon's story is as much about the only man executed for this crime, as it is the story of the changing political climate of the early 1860s.

review of Hanging Captain Gordon: The Life and Trial of an American Slave Trader, by Soodalter, Ron, Civil War Book Review, (Fall 2006).