Essaka, Benin Empire (claimed)
|Died||31 March 1797 (aged 51-52)|
|Other names||Gustavus Vassa, Graves|
|Occupation||Explorer, writer, merchant, slave, abolitionist|
|Known for||Influence over British abolitionists; his autobiography|
|Children||Joanna Vassa and Anna Maria Vassa|
Olaudah Equiano (c. 1745 – 31 March 1797) also known as Gustavus Vassa or Graves, was an important African involved in the British movement for the abolition of the slave trade. He was made a slave when he was a child but was later able to buy his freedom. He worked as an author, merchant, and explorer in South America, the Caribbean, the Arctic, the American colonies, and the United Kingdom, where he settled by 1792. In his autobiography, The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano, he wrote about the horrors of slavery. This influenced the passing of the Slave Trade Act of 1807.