Extracts from official depositions conclude investigation of the criminal takeover of the San Dominick with explanations of how and why the ship was usurped. At first view, authorities assume that Don Benito Cereno's farfetched account is an outgrowth of emotional disturbance resulting from trauma. Later testimony by sailors corroborates his story. A deposition from Don Benito, taken on September 24, 1799, by the king's notary, indicates that on May 20, 1799, on a voyage from Valparaiso to Callao, the ship sailed with thirty cases of hardware, 160 blacks, a crew of thirty-six, and some passengers. There follows a segment of a passenger census, naming José, Aranda's personal servant; Francesco, the cabin steward; Dago; four elderly African caulkers; six adult Ashantis; Atufal, a former African chief; Babo, a small Senegalese; and thirty-nine women and children. At the time of the uprising, the blacks, led by Babo and Atufal, his assistant, were unfettered. They
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