White Gold : The Extraordinary Story of Thomas Pellow and North Africa's One Million European Slaves, Paperback

White Gold : The Extraordinary Story of Thomas Pellow and North Africa's One Million European Slaves Paperback

Edited by Roland Philipps

4 out of 5 (1 rating)


This is the forgotten story of the million white Europeans, snatched from their homes and taken in chains to the great slave markets of North Africa to be sold to the highest bidder.

Ignored by their own governments, and forced to endure the harshest of conditions, very few lived to tell the tale. Using the firsthand testimony of a Cornish cabin boy named Thomas Pellow, Giles Milton vividly reconstructs a disturbing, little known chapter of history.

Pellow was bought by the tyrannical sultan of Morocco who was constructing an imperial pleasure palace of enormous scale and grandeur, built entirely by Christian slave labour.

As his personal slave, he would witness first-hand the barbaric splendour of the imperial court, as well as experience the daily terror of a cruel regime. Gripping, immaculately researched, and brilliantly realised, WHITE GOLD reveals an explosive chapter of popular history, told with all the pace and verve of one of our finest historians.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 352 pages, B/W line drawings & photos
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton General Division
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Slavery & abolition of slavery
  • ISBN: 9780340794708



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Fascinating account of the white slave trade in North Africa, in the 17th to 19th centuries, centering on the experiences of Cornishman Thomas Pellow who survived 23 years in captivity, returning to England to tell his tale. Giles Milton makes full use of his sources, telling the overarching story with due reference to Thomas Pellow. It sounds horrific, it was horrific but it is a rollicking good read.