1811 Slave Revolt

The  1811 Slave Revolt began in St. John the Baptist Parish and continued downriver to St. Charles Parish.  Led by Charles Deslondes, the revolutionaires sought to create a free black republic by capturing the city of New Orleans. Over 500 Africans speaking at least 50 different languages uttered the slogans "On to New Orleans" and "Freedom or Death" as they marched along the river. Both men and women served as lituenants of the makeshift army.

The rebellion was ultimately stopped by Jan. 11 with many of the participants killed or executed.  The trials took place at Destrehan Plantation, which now houses an exhibit dedicated to the 1811 Slave Revolt.  The heads of the executed were placed on stakes along a 60 mile stretch of the river to discourage future uprisings. 

Although the 1811 Slave Revolt was unsucessful, it greatly weakend the system of chattel slavery and led to many revolts setting the stage for the Civil war. 


Destrehan Plantation

Zinn Education Project - 1811 Slave Revolt