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A page from the New World Sea Traders book with information about Magnus Hanso and the Black Rock.

New World Sea Traders was a British trading group owned and operated by Magnus Hanso, a former ship's captain. The company existed until 1882 when it was sold to the East Ocean Trade Group. It was involved in activities including the slave trade and mining in the Indian Ocean.

The Company

New World Sea Traders was based in Portsmouth, Britain where it managed slips 18 to 27. [1] Magnus Hanso was described as a hands-on owner and captained several voyages a year for the company. In 1882, it is known that the company owned fifteen ships, including one frigate, two sloops, and three slave vessels (despite that the slave trade was already outlawed at this time). As the Black Rock disappeared one year earlier, the company must have presumably had at least sixteen ships at one time.

The Black Rock

The company allegedly operated the Black Rock, which participated in illegal slave trade. The ship was involved in trading gold mined in Indonesia for slaves in East Africa. The Black Rock disappeared in 1881 after inexplicably sailing east from Papua New Guinea with a crew of 40 and an unknown number of slaves. At some point, the ship ended up beached inland on the Island. According to the blast door map, Magnus Hanso may be buried on the Island, and so may have been captaining the ship on its final, doomed voyage.

Sale in 1882

A year after the disappearance of the Black Rock and presumably Magnus Hanso, New World Sea Traders was sold to the East Indian Trade Group, which inherited its fifteen-strong fleet. Afterward, the ships of the company ceased to be involved in the slave trade and were converted to legitimate business purposes. In the 1950s, the Hanso Group bought the East Ocean Trade Group, again renaming it to the Allied Copenhagen Marine Merchants. (Rachel Blake Copenhagen 02)