Coin - Am I Not a Man and a Brother?

Five Facts about the coin

1) This coin is a good example of ‘craftivism’ – making something as part of a campaign

2) It was designed by William Hackwood who was Josiah Wedgwood’s senior craftsman

3) It was produced as a medallion from 1787 and became a coin later

4) The slogan on the coin reads ‘Am I Not A Man and a Brother?’

5) It was used as a symbol to show that the person wearing it supported abolition.

About the coin

As a member of the Committee for the Abolition of the Slave Trade, the Staffordshire pottery manufacturer Josiah Wedgwood instructed his senior craftsman, William Hackwood, to prepare a medallion that would encourage people to join the campaign.

Hackwood produced a small cameo which featured a kneeling slave in chains and the motto ‘Am I Not A Man and A Brother?

The medallion, first made in 1787, became a popular icon and was worn as a badge and in hatpins, brooches and necklaces. It was also inset into other items such as snuff boxes and turned into a coin, like the one displayed in our museum.

Wedgwood, who started his business in 1759, admired John Wesley and is said to have presented him with a special teapot that was then subsequently mass produced. His company was responsible for many items of ‘Wesleyana’ in the 19th century.

"Really excellent - I will be recommending it to friends" - Museum visitor

How to find this item:

Look carefully in the War and Slavery Room– it is tucked away near the window.

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