Cuffy's Slave Rebellion, Berbice (in present day Guyana) Berbice River. Because of the density of slaves and the proximity of free blacks in the region, plantation owners were wary of insurrection. Defenders repelled the slaves' attack at Durloe's, and many planters and their families escaped to St. Thomas, an estimated 5–9 miles (8.0–14.5 km) by sea. The slaves killed many of the whites on these plantations. Four ships carried planters and their families from Charlotte Amalie in August. [2] After the Akwamu king died, rival tribes in the area attacked the weakened Akwamu nation, and by 1730 they defeated the people. Lasting several months into August 1734, the slave rebellion was one of the earliest and longest slave revolts in the Americas. The rebellion was put down within a few days, but Turner survived in hiding for more than two months afterwards. The Dutch either fled altogether or holed up on a well-fortified sugar plantation … A slave rebellion is an armed uprising by slaves, as a way of fighting for their freedom.Slave rebellions have occurred in nearly all societies that practice slavery or have practiced slavery in the past. But a profound repulsion to slavery, plus encouragement from the successful slave revolt in Haiti led him to plan to murder every white in the South, with the help of thousands of slaves and supporters. [4], The Danes embarked in the African slave trade in 1657. From razing New York City to torching Louisiana plantations, these slave rebellions paved the way for the Civil War, and the eventual abolition of slavery. Dutch planters were still important on the island. [8] The loss of life and property from the insurrection caused many St. John landowners to move to St. Croix, a nearby island bought by the Danish from the French in 1733. Participants of rebellions were often publicly killed ‘by progressive mutilation, … [9], The 1733 slave insurrection started with open acts of rebellion by slaves on November 23, 1733, at the Coral Bay plantation owned by Magistrate Johannes Sødtmann. A group of enslaved plantation workers met on January 6, 1811. [8], In their homeland many of the Akwamu had been nobles, wealthy merchants or other powerful members of their society. Forty-seven African-Americans were condemned to death for alleged involvement in the plot. Rebellion Beginning. by Bill Evans. The enslavement of African people created an economic system that persisted until 1865 when the 13th Amendment abolished the practice. Most of the uprisings were small in scope and were put down easily. Slaves did sometimes act violently against whites, assaulting and even killing masters and overseers. They had hidden knives in the lots, which they used to kill most of the soldiers at the fort. The Danish West India Company provided only six soldiers for the defense of St. John, which supplemented the local white militia. Mississippi was settled by the French in the 1720s. They looted and burned plantations before being defeated by British troops in January 1832. This was even more shocking than any previous uprising. Some were larger in ambition and sent a chill down the spines of countless Southern planters. He actually succeeded in killing a large number of white Southerners. Slave revolts 1736-1832. Nat Turner was somewhat of a mystic. [citation needed], At the time of the 1733 slave rebellion on St. John, hundreds of Akwamu people were among the slave population on St. John. During the revolt, former slaves organized a government and controlled most of the colony for almost a year. [13] On May 24, 1840, eleven slaves from St. John stole a boat and escaped to Tortola during the night. Hundreds of minor uprisings occurred on American plantations during the two and a half centuries of slavery. The slave Charles Deslondes is thought to have been brought from St. Domingue (present-day Haiti) to the Deslondes Plantation in present-day LaPlace. Landowners John and Lieven Jansen and a group of loyal slaves resisted the attack, holding off the advancing rebels with gunfire. [6][pages needed] The colonial legislature passed the Slave Code of 1733 to try to enforce obedience from slaves. Copyright ©2008-2020 ushistory.org, owned by the Independence Hall Association in Philadelphia, founded 1942. When the British emancipated their slaves in the British West Indies in 1838, slaves on St. John began escaping to nearby Tortola and other British islands. He frequently was said to have religious visions, and he claimed at times to have spoken with God. UNAUTHORIZED REPUBLICATION IS A COPYRIGHT VIOLATIONContent Usage Permissions, Gateway Virginia, The Richmond Times Dispatch. Kitty, Paulus, David, and Adam moved to St. Thomas. offered freedom and passage out of the South to most troublesome rebellion C.) tried to ensure slave loyalty through kind treatment and monetary compensation The South responded by increasing slave patrols and tightening their ever more repressive slave codes. Young Danish people could not be persuaded to emigrate to the West Indies in great enough number to provide a reliable source of labor. [3] The British won out before the Danes claimed Saint John in 1718, but numerous Dutch planters stayed on the island. In the late 17th century, the British, French and Dutch competed for the island after settling it together for a period. Only a few organized revolts, in which the enslaved threatened white lives and property, ever actually took place. Weaker military control, easier escape to rugged interior areas, greater imbalance of Africans to European plant… They planned to continue the production of sugar and other crops by using Africans of other tribes as slave laborers. Colony militia continued to hunt down maroons and finally declared the rebellion at an end in late August 1734. Slave resistance on plantations Some African slaves on the plantations fought for their freedom by using passive resistance (working slowly) or running away. The Baptist War, as it came to be called, was one of the largest slave rebellions in the British West Indies. Some of the rebel slaves disappeared into the mountains and joined the Maroon communities. In 1831, Turner claimed to be responding to one of these visions and organized about 70 slaves who went from plantation to plantation and murdered about 75 men, women and children. In part they were reacting to poor treatment and a desire for freedom; in addition, there was a widespread, mistaken belief that Parliament had passed a law for … Hundreds of minor uprisings occurred on American plantations during the two and a half centuries of slavery. Tacky, a Coromantee Chief was from the Guinea area of the West Coast of Africa, as were many of the slaves sold to plantations in the St. Mary’s Parish of Jamaica. The Jansens were able to retreat to their waiting boat and escape to Durloe's Plantation. The loyal Jansen slaves also escaped. In February, 1763 slaves on a … On January 8, 1811, a slave revolt led by Charles Deslondes swept by Destrehan’s Plantation. The 1733 slave insurrection on St. John (Sankt Jan) in the Danish West Indies (now St. John, United States Virgin Islands) started on November 23, 1733, when 150 African slaves from (present-day Ghana) revolted against the owners and managers of the island's plantations. The slave codes bear witness to the growing fear of slave insurrection and revolt. About 500 slaves rose up, caused considerable damage and killed two white men. [14], Slaves and free blacks petitioned the colonial government and Denmark to abolish slavery. In 1832, planter and slaveholder Joel Cameron of Warren County, sixty miles upriver from Natchez, suddenly disappeared. 1811 Slave Revolt Memorial Contributor: Whitney Plantation The 1811 Slave Revolt Memorial. A Map of Slave Revolts in the United States. The French ships returned to Martinique on June 1, leaving the local militia to track down the remaining rebels, which they did over the next three months. It is noteworthy that the 1811 uprising in Orleans Territory was in a sense a direct continuation, on the American mainland, of the uprising in St. Domingue. Starting as early as 1663, slaves were organizing revolts to regain their freedom. Turner had done what others had not. On July 3, 1848, 114 years after the slave insurrection, enslaved Afro-Caribbeans of St. Croix held a non-violent, mass demonstration seeking abolition of slavery. Some accounts tell of slaves poisoning their masters and mistresses. The first plantations in Africa were founded between 1500 and 1800 on islands such as CAPE VERDE, SAO TOME AND PRINCIPE, ZANZIBAR, MAURITIUS, and REUNION. Tacky’s Slave Rebellion. The rebellion was effectively suppressed at Belmont Plantation on the morning of August 23, 1831. While they found St. Croix to be a richer land, they had to have their slaves clear jungle before being able to live there readily. John. Dozens of slaves were executed, and beheaded. With their firepower and troops, by May 27 [11] they had restored planters' rule of the island. Turner and about 18 of his supporters were hanged. Gabriel Prosser's Rebellion Plot. Before the uprising began, his plan was revealed and he was captured, tried, and hanged. Out of an estimated 74,000 slaves in the united colony of Essequibo-Demerara about 13,000 took part in the uprising. The Governor-General Peter von Scholten declared emancipation throughout the Danish West Indies. Some were larger in ambition and sent a chill down the spines of countless Southern planters. Some slaves resisted by planning rebellions. John Curry relocated to Trinidad. "Day-to-day resistance" was the most common form of opposition to slavery. [15], Great African Slave Revolt of Guamacaro, Matanzas, "The 1733 Slave Revolt on the Island of St. John: Continuity and Change from Africa to the Americas", "Part I: Establishment and Consolidation, 1718–1755", "Timeline of the Emancipation of the Danish West Indies", "St. John's Other Revolt: The Desertions of 1840", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=1733_slave_insurrection_on_St._John&oldid=994662688, Articles with unsourced statements from November 2019, Wikipedia articles needing page number citations from November 2014, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 16 December 2020, at 21:52. Barbados, Antigua, Jamaica – 17th Century Slave Rebellions and Plots As one of the earliest plantation-society islands, Barbados first utilized indentured servants for sugar plantation labor. A desire for freedom and the dream of successful rebellion is often the greatest object of song, art, and culture amongst the enslaved population. Under these conditions, overseer cruelty flourished. Most likely enslaved from birth, Denmark Vesey won a lottery and purchased his freedom. Henry Law, Petrus, and Polly stayed on Tortola. Scenes from Nat Turner’s 1831 Rebellion — this rebellion is well known, but many lesser-known slave rebellions preceded it. Failure to procure plantation labor from other sources made importing slaves from Africa the main supply of labor on the Danish West Indies islands. [2] In 1733 the population of African slaves on St. John was more than five times as large as that of the European inhabitants: 1087 slaves and 206 whites. If there was one thing more difficult than being a black slave in the American South, it was being a black female slave… They fled to the Indians and joined them in their wars against the white settlers. Nat Turner's Rebellion (also known as the Southampton Insurrection) was a rebellion of black slaves that took place in Southampton County, Virginia, in August 1831, led by Nat Turner. In retaliation for years of oppression, their enemies sold many Akwamu people into slavery to the Danes; they were transported to plantations in the West Indies, including estates on St. The date was set for Sunday, July 24, 1822. [8] An hour later, other slaves were admitted into the fort at Coral Bay to deliver wood, a regular event. Some slaves assumed their owners surnames. [2] An Akwamu chief, King June, a field slave and foreman on the Sødtmann estate, led the rebellion. [2] Danish ships carried about 85,000 African slaves to the New World from 1660 to 1806. [2], When the Spanish first occupied the West Indies, they used the indigenous people as slave labor but most died as a result of infectious disease, overwork, and war. They could run away. All artwork on the 1811 Slave Revolt exhibit at Destrehan Plantation is by local folk artist Lorraine Gendron. Murdering a master was the ultimate act of individual rebellion. The most successful slave rebellion in history, the Haitian Revolution began as a slave revolt and ended with the founding of an independent state. The rebels looted the Jansen plantation and moved on to confront whites taking refuge at Durloe's plantation. The Akwamu had conquered the Accra and established dominance on trading routes into the interior. Brother Schmitz, the local Moravian missionary, was sent to Tortola by the St. John police to persuade the slaves to return. [2], Danish officials appealed for help to French colonists at Martinique, located 324 miles (521 km) away. The rebellion gained momentum quickly. Escalation. The 1733 slave insurrection on St. John (Sankt Jan) in the Danish West Indies (now St. John, United States Virgin Islands) started on November 23, 1733, when 150 African slaves from (present-day Ghana) revolted against the owners and managers of the island's plantations. Gabriel’s Conspiracy, 1800. These high ranking Akwamu developed plans to instigate an insurrection, take control of St. John and rule it. Starting as early as 1663, slaves were organizing revolts to regain their freedom. The 15 or so slaves at Andry's plantation, about 30 miles (50 km)... Suppression. John. In each area, they avoided widespread destruction of property since they intended to take over the estates and resume crop production for their own benefit. The main insurrection started in 1791 in the valuable French colony of Saint-Domingue. Born prophetically in 1776 on the Prosser plantation, just six miles north … Large-scale slave rebellions did take place in the Caribbean, and plantation slaves were capable of forming elaborate plans and keeping them secret. Attempts to use indentured servants from Danish prisons as plantation workers were not successful. The Akwamu slaves captured the fort in Coral Bay and took control of most of the island. The Akwamu slaves captured the fort in Coral Bayand took control of most of the island. Rebellion would often find voice in less dramatic ways and more personal ways. In an attempt to prevent slave rebellions, southern whites: A.) One was led by Denmark Vesey and the other was led by Nat Turner. had dark-skinned whites infiltrate and spy on slave communities B.) The deadliest revolt in Colonial America takes place in Stono, SC. Lasting several months into August 1734, the slave rebellion was one of the earliest and longest slave revolts in the Americas. 17 years ago. Slaves strike back. Gabriel Prosser and his brother, Solomon, were preparing for the … After planters replaced those overseers, Charles Bryan, his wife Katurah, and James Jacobs returned to work at Leinster Bay. [5] Many of St. John's plantations were owned by people residing on St. Thomas. Some slaves banded together and stopped working, while others deliberately slowed down their pace. rebellion was put down within a few days, but Turner survived in hiding for more than two months afterwards. Soldier John Gabriel escaped to St. Thomas and alerted Danish officials to the revolt. [10] Two French ships arrived from there at St. John on April 23, 1734, carrying several hundred French and Swiss troops to try to take control from the rebels. The idea was to put off future rebels by showing them how any rebellion would be punished. [12], Denmark ended the African slave trade in the Danish West Indies on January 1, 1803, but slavery continued on the islands. The Akwamu attacked the Cinnamon Bay Plantation located on the central north shore. Franz Claasen's land deed was recorded August 20, 1738, by Jacob van Stell, making Claasen the first 'Free Colored' landowner on St. He worked as a carpenter in South Carolina as a respected artisan for years and was quite satisfied with his life. Early Portuguese sugar plantations based on slave labor eventually failed because of slave rebellions and difficult farming conditions. [2], In 1718 the Danish claimed the island of St. John to develop sugar plantations and crops such as indigo and cotton; there was an especially great demand for sugar and prices were high in Europe. During the revolt, former slaves organized a government and controlled most of the colony for almost a year. […] The rebellion was effectively suppressed at Belmont Plantation on the morning of August 23, 1831. They were stopped after a rough battle. THE TEXT ON THIS PAGE IS NOT PUBLIC DOMAIN AND HAS NOT BEEN SHARED VIA A CC LICENCE. As more slaves were imported from Africa to work on the developing sugar plantations, and the population of enslaved Africans grew on Jamaica, there were more rebellions by the slaves. Most of the uprisings were small in scope and were put down easily. They risked reprisals of torture and death. As they continued on their rampage they gathered additional supporters but when their ammunition was exhausted, they were captured. [1], Planters regained control by the end of May 1734, after the Akwamu were defeated by several hundred better-armed French and Swiss troops sent in April from Martinique, a French colony. On January 6, 1811, several enslaved men met to finalize plans of an uprising along the coast. After meeting with the Tortola officials and the runaway slaves, Schmitz returned to St. John to relay the slaves' resolve to stay away because of abusive treatment by the overseers on the plantations. John. The insurrection began at the plantation of Manuel Andry in St. John the Baptist Parish. Two hundred and five years ago, on the night of January 8, 1811, more than 500 enslaved people took up arms in one of the largest slave rebellions … In many of these countries enslaved Africans outnumbered whites 9 to 1. The Dutch either fled altogether or holed up on a well-fortified sugar plantation … In 1811, the largest slave revolt in the U.S. South erupted on the Coast of Louisiana. An estimated 9,000 individuals were involved. It was, however, large-scale and bloody rebellions that frightened slaveowners and brought into greater focus the anger and frustration of the enslaved to Northerners. Slave uprisings, or rebellions and revolts, were frequent and were ferociously put down by plantation owners. By the beginning of the 18th century, the Danish West India and Guinea Company had consolidated their slave operation to the vicinity of Accra (now in Ghana) on the Guinea coast. Latin American and Caribbean African Americans challenged their masters more often than their North American counterparts. [8] A group of rebels under the leadership of King June stayed at the fort to maintain control; another group took control of the estates in the Coral Bay area after hearing the signal shots from the fort's cannon. [8], After gaining control of the Suhm, Sødtmann, and Company estates, the rebels spread out over the rest of the island. They intended to resume crop production under their own control and use Africans of other tribes as slave labor. [2] One-fifth of the plantations were then devoted to sugar; by the end of the century, most would be, and the total slave population would be 2500. The rebellion, which began on August 18, 1823, and lasted for two days, was led by slaves with the highest status. [2], In 1733, in response to harsh living conditions from drought, a severe hurricane, and crop failure from insect infestation, many slaves in the West Indies, including on St. John, left their plantations to maroon, hiding in the woods. The rebels killed between 55 and 65 people, at least 51 of whom were white. African slaves resisted enslavement and the southern plantation economy in a variety of ways, ranging from violent rebellion to sabotage, infanticide, suicide, running away, and the deliberate destruction of plantation property. Approximately 150 Akwamu were involved in the insurrection; other African ethnic groups did not support it, and some were loyal to planters. But before it was abolished, enslaved people had three available methods to resist a life in bondage: They could rebel against enslavers. They intended to resume crop prod… Two of the most famous revolts were in the early nineteenth century. And of the 350 plantations estates in … The Demerara rebellion of 1823 was an uprising involving more than 10,000 slaves that took place in the colony of Demerara-Essequibo. The Haitian Revolution was the only successful revolt by enslaved Black people in history, and it led to the creation of the second independent nation in the Western Hemisphere, after the United States. [7][pages needed] Penalties for disobedience were severe public punishment, including whipping, amputation of limbs, or death by hanging. They became the dominant tribe of Akan people in the district of Accra and were known for being "heavy-handed in dealing with the tribes they had conquered", taking captives and selling them as slaves, and keeping numerous women as concubines in various villages. [8], The slave insurrection was considered ended on August 25, 1734[6] when Sergeant Øttingen captured the remaining maroon rebels. None of the runaway slaves were punished. A number of slave actions in Mississippi are cluster where the Mississippi river where the majority of enslaved population lived on large plantations. Some plantations were destroyed by the violence and people killed. A large section of the code was intended to prevent slaves from escaping and stop them from conspiring to set up independent communities. In October 1733, slaves from the Suhm estate on the eastern part of St. John, and from the Company estate and other plantations around the Coral Bay area absconded. By mid-1733, planters had developed 109 plantations, and slaveholders owned more than 1,000 African slaves on St. Slaves ran away in droves, following the Underground Railroad to freedom in Canada and the Northern states. According to a report by French planter Pierre Pannet, the rebel leaders met regularly at night for some time to develop the plan. [2] The rebel slaves moved along to the north shore of the island. [3], Franz Claasen, a loyal slave of the van Stell family, was deeded the Mary Point Estate for alerting the family to the rebellion and assisting in their escape to St. Thomas. Other leaders were Kanta, King Bolombo, Prince Aquashie, and Breffu. The strikers’ demands were ignored, and the strike turned into an open rebellion by tens of thousands of slaves. While some plantations had been started, there was not an adequate supply of laborers among the settlers. The eight men (Charles Bryan, James Jacob, Adam [alias Cato], Big David, Henry Law, Paulus, John Curay), and three women (Kitty, Polly, and Katurah) were from the Annaberg plantation and ten Leinster Bay estates. The history of slave resistance and revolts is the story of the desperate and sometimes successful attempt of people to gain their liberty in the face of systematic repression and bondage. Inspired in large part by the French Revolution, diverse groups in the colony of Saint-Domingue began fighting against French colonial power in 1791. These absentee landowners hired overseers to manage their lands and slaves on St. John. He was an educated man, fluent in several languages, which he learned while he was enslaved to a widely traveled slave trader. Two days later the slaves banded together and killed the son of their plantation owner. They had restored planters ' rule of the Akwamu slaves captured the fort but survived. 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