The man who would not give up
1791 William Wilberforce's parliamentary campaign against the slave trade was easily defeated in the British House of Commons by 163 votes to 88.
Wilberforce, however, was made of strong stuff and refused to lie down on the issue. In 1805 the House of Commons passed a bill to that made it unlawful for any British subject to transport slaves. Again, Wilberforce was blocked by forces of reaction and the measure was denied by the House of Lords.
William Wilberforce died on July 29, 1833. One month later, Parliament passed the Slavery Abolition Act that gave all slaves in the British Empire their freedom. The great reformer had lost a fortune on election campaigns and died in poverty.
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