Cudjo (Cudjoe) Kazoola Lewis is believed to be the last African to enter the United States via the transatlantic slave trade. Born sometime around 1840, he was brought here illegally along with 115 other enslaved people aboard the ship Clotilda. They arrived around 1860, long after the U.S. had outlawed transatlantic human trafficking. The Clotilda was discovered in 2018 in Mobile Bay, near where the owner had set her afire to hide evidence of his crime. Following Emancipation, the men and woman aboard the Clotilda established a community near Mobile, Ala. known today as Africatown. Descendants and residents of Africantown met news of the Clotilda’s discovery with a mix of joy, relief and the pain of remembering what their ancestors had gone through.
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