The first African-American President of the United States peers through “the door of no return” at the House of Slaves on Goree Island via The Obama Diary
On the House of Slaves
Goree Island is a small 45-acre island located off the coast of Senegal. Goree Island was developed as a center of the expanding European slave trade.
The first record of slave trading there dates back to 1536 and was conducted by Portuguese, the first Europeans to set foot on the Island in 1444. The house of slaves was built in 1776. Built by the Dutch, it is the last slave house still standing in Goree and now serves as a museum. The island is considered as a memorial to the Black Diaspora.
An estimated 20 million Africans passed through the Island between the mid-1500s and the mid-1800s. During the African slave trade, Goree Island was a slave-holding warehouse, an absolute center for the trade in African men, women and children. Millions of West Africans were taken against their will. These Africans were brought to Goree Island, sold into slavery, and held in the holding warehouse on the island until they were shipped across the Atlantic Ocean.