Researchers have announced the discovery of a shipwreck that provides key insight into the transatlantic slave trade.
The São José slave wreck ship was discovered off the coast Cape Town, South Africa, and dates back to 1794, Iziko Museums of South Africa reported.
"The story of the Saõ José's is more than an African story. It is a story that transcends time, space, place and identity. It is a global story of our inter-connectedness as a human race. It is a story of migration and of untold human wrongs," said Rooksana Omar, CEO of Iziko.
Artifacts including "shackles, iron ballast to weigh down the ship and its human cargo, and a wooden pulley block," were retrieved from the Portugese slave ship, which is believed to have sank on its way to Brazil while carrying hundreds of slaves from Mozambique.
"The São José slave shipwreck site reverberates with historical significance and represents an addition to our underwater heritage that has the potential to advance knowledge and understanding of slavery, not only at the Cape but on a global level," Omar said.
The wreck is linked to sites such as the Iziko Slave Lodge that was used to lock up incarcerated Mozambicans, and the findings could be used to determine other relationships between sites of enslavement in Mozambique and Brazil.
"At the same time, it raises important questions, such as the location of the burial site of the Mozambican casualties of the wreck, therefore providing opportunities for further research and investigation," Omar concluded.
The complete findings will be announced this evening at the Iziko Slave Lodge Museum by the Iziko Museums of South Africa (Iziko), in collaboration with the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, and George Washington University.