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Igbo Landing : The Mass Suicide of 1803

At Dunbar’s creek, St. Simon’s Island, Glynn County, Georgia, is the historic site Igbo Landing. It was there that a mass suicide occurred in 1803 when captive Igbo people who had been sold into slavery and transported to the united decided to take their lives.

During the transalantic slave trade, a dark time in world history, the business of selling slaves was a profitable one and as such John Couper and Thomas Spalding purchased the Igbos for trade. They were known to be hardworking, independent and performed tasks with little or no supervision so these men thought they were ideal for sale.

They were to be sold for rates as high as $100, seventy-five of them were taken captive. When they got off the ship, they got a taste of what was in store for them as slaves and rather than stay and be treated like livestock, one of the Igbo chiefs amongst them gave a directive and immediately, they turned back to the Dunbar Creek singing that their god take them back home. In the song they request that the water spirits which brought them to a foreign land take them home.

As a result of this, some of them drowned and those who were rescued by bounty hunters were sold for $10 each.Locals in the area claim that it is haunted by the drowned Igbos. Centuries later, the drowned Igbos are remembered for their bravery and decision to choose death over a life of misery.