Ahead of the abolishment of slavery in the UK, the North East of Scotland was a hot-spot of slave owner activity. Many places we know have links to slavery, which I planned to document using the tethered flag. Scotland as a country proudly claims it helped to abolish slavery, but we were disproportionately represented in the slave trade of plantations in the West Indies.
Following the death of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Tony McDade in America, I felt totally ignorant and disconnected to what was happening overseas, but knew that I should not. After discovering that the faces of slaves had been etched into stone that I walked under everyday when attending the University of Aberdeen during my undergrad, I decided to look into things more.
The flag represents claiming property, belongings, a sign of freedom - it is not associated with slavery. I plan to take the flag to locations associated with slavery in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire to acknowledge and highlight the role it has played in our communities and history, whether we feel tethered to our past or not.
Though this is a project I am passionate about, but I have no plans to continue this project currently. I don't think it is time for a white woman in Scotland to do anything but support others at this moment in time. I am grateful to Rachel Lang at UCL (Researcher of Centre for the Study of the legacies of British Slave-ownership) who helped me research the project further, and supported me in how best to move the project forward.
If you would like to use the flag for awareness or activist purposes, please let me know.