Dutch Letters from Ghana

Jos Damen tells the stories of two unusual men who lived a century apart in the Dutch colony at Elmina in West Africa; a poet who became a tax inspector and a former slave who argued that slavery did not contradict ideas of Christian freedom.

Flying the flag: Elmina Castle following the Dutch conquest of 1637, an illustration used in the 'Atlas Blaeu-van der Hem'. This is an account of two men, Willem van Focquenbroch and Jacobus Capitein, who lived in different centuries and came from different backgrounds. They might at first appear to have nothing in common but there are similarities between them, and their personal stories offer a particular insight into the Dutch colony on the Gold Coast, now part of modern Ghana, in the 17th and 18th centuries.

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