Share the Benin Bronzes!

Share the Benin Bronzes!

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Deadria Farmer-Paellmann started this petition to Smithsonian Institution Board of Regents Member & General Counsel Vice President Kamala Harris & Craig Harris and

This is a Benin bronze. As many as 10 thousand exist.

Most were made between 1500 and 1897 with manillas -- a metal slave trade currency.

The Kingdom of Benin was paid manillas in exchange for people they sold to Europeans into the Transatlantic Slave trade. They admit to melting them down and casting them into the bronzes.

They were taken from the kingdom of Benin by the British Navy in 1897 in retaliation for the kingdom killing unarmed British navy officers and African pilots, and sold to museums and collectors around the world.

One Benin bronze sold for $13 million in 2016.

The slave trader heirs of the Benin Kingdom and their government, Nigeria, want them back, but they don't want to share them with the descendants of the people they enslaved -- whose lives literally financed them.

But we want co-ownership and access to them in countries where we live as a result of the slave trade. They are our cultural property too.

We are claiming our share of the Benin bronzes because they belong to all of us!

#TheyBelongToAllofUs!

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