CAJUNS, CREOLES, PIRATES AND PLANTERS
Your New Louisiana Ancestors Format
Volume 2, Number 33
By Damon Veach
SLAVE REBELLION: The Greater New Orleans Louis A. Martinet Society, through its President-Elect, Sharrolyn Jackson Miles, is laying the groundwork for an important event. January 2011 will be the Bicentennial of what has been passed down as the German Coast Uprising or Slave Rebellion. This society and other local attorneys and supporters are interested in commemorating the events surrounding the historic 1811 slave uprising which took place at the German Coast which is now part of St. John and St. Charles parishes. The revolt began on January 8, 1811 and was led by Charles Deslondes, a free person of color working as a laborer on the Deslondes plantation.
During the insurrection, approximately 200 slaves escaped from their plantations and joined the insurgents as they marched 20 miles downriver toward New Orleans. The rebellion was quashed a couple of days later when a militia of planters led by Colonel Manuel Andry attacked them at Destrehan Plantation. According to reports, 95 slaves were killed in the aftermath including 18 who were tried and executed at the Destrehan Plantation and 11 who were tried and executed in New Orleans. The slaves were executed by decapitation or hanging and the heads of some of the slaves were placed on stakes at plantations as a warning to others.
This organization feels that it is very important that Louisianans take the time to remember this historic revolt which has been documented as the largest slave revolt in United States history. It is their desire to get the word out to the community by planning several events in connection with this. Some events being considered are:
· To seek pardons under La. R.S. 15:572.9 for the participants who were executed after hasty convictions based on alleged confessions.
· To develop a short curriculum to be sent to local area schools regarding the revolt which includes an overview of what life was like for slaves and free people of color 200 years ago.
· To develop a continuing legal education program for lawyers focusing on civil rights issues which will include a panel discussion regarding the parallels that might be drawn between the German Coast slave uprising and present day conflicts such as the Danzinger Bridge incident in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina.
· To stage a mock trial revisiting the trials of the captured slaves.
· To plan a march or walk/run along the path that the slaves took during the uprising.
This group’s ideas are still in the very early planning stages and would love to hear any other ideas and/or suggestions that anyone might have. The contact number by phone is (985) 210-7808 or e-mail to email@example.com.
It is believed that this is a rich part of Louisiana history that should now be brought to the forefront. It is the group’s desire that through these events, everyone can work together to bring both local and national attention to the rich role Louisiana played in American History.
MEETING SCHEDULED: The Terrebonne Genealogical Society meets on the last Saturday of each month at the Terrebonne Parish Library’s Main Branch in Houma. Professional genealogist Judy Riffel will speak at the October 30th meeting on Louisiana Spanish Land Grants. She will also bring a small supply of books published by Le Comité des Archives de la Louisiane for sale. The meeting starts at 1 p.m.
TRAHAN FAMILY: According to Rosie Trahan and Mitch Conover, the Trahan Family Association met in regular session on April 24, 2010 in Maurice at the Woodmen of the World Hall in conjunction with Broussard Family Association and want to share results from this meeting. Corwin Broussard, President, Broussard Family Association presided. Don Lewis Broussard gave the invocation/meal blessing, and Loubert Trahan led in Pledge of Allegiance in English and Charles Trahan led in French.
Broussard told of the Great Acadian Awakening 2011 to be held October 7-16, 2011 – an event to awaken the realization of the loss of language, culture, and coastal lands and to seek support, partnerships, solutions and concerted plans of action through large gatherings with Acadians from all over the world. Some of the scheduled events for next year are: October 7-8 - Unveiling of Acadian Monument and Showcase New Orleans area; October 9-10 - Showcase Houma area; October 11-12 - Showcase Lake Charles area; October 13 -Ceremonies in Lafayette; October 14 - Showcase Lafayette area; October 15 - Festival des Acadiens et Creoles; and October 16 - Closing ceremonies. More info: www.gra2011.org.
Loubert Trahan, President, Trahan Family Association, made reference to GRA 2011 noting that with the active interest of younger members and UL organizations and help from CODOFIL, it should be a good event. He also offered support toward an activity for Trahan/Broussard members at that time.
James Bourque, CAFA President, said that at one time 40 family associations made up CAFA, but last year only 15 associations were represented. At the last meeting in St. Martinville for the Spring Festival only six board members were present. These members voted for CAFA to move under the umbrella of Louisiane - Acadie, Inc. To be able to use their 501C-3 status, CAFA Treasurer Loubert Trahan explained the financial matters.
Also, at the meeting, straws were drawn for the Scholarship to St. Anne, and Haley Vincent from Kaplan received the first place drawing. Her family group are members of the Trahan Family Association. The Boudreaux Family Association is also contributing to the scholarship, which will make a total scholarship amount of $2,000.
Shirley Thibodeaux, President, Thibodeaux Family Association, said she would keep her office until next year and asked that her association be included next year for the Great Acadian Awakening 2011.
Warren Perron introduced visitors Daniel Theriot from Caraket, a province of Nova Scotia, president of Festival Acadienne (to be held Aug. 1 - 15) and Jean Robert Fregal from New Brunswick, who is helping out with Erath Museum. Perron said a group of LSU and UL professors studied the technique the Acadians used their system to clear the salt water out of their marshes and prepared this exhibit, Farming the Wetlands of Acadie, which toured for two years. The Erath Museum will be the permanent home of this project and an artifact, a piece of the aboiteau built by Beausoleil.
Don Arceneaux (Idaho) attended and gave remarks on the Thibodeau(x)/Broussard Reunion while at the Congres Mondial 2009. He was asked for photographs of his Broussard Ancestors for a book being written, “Look Into My Eyes”, and appealed to each to collect photos of ancestors and to take a look into their eyes.
Gracie (age 11) and Julie (age 9) Babineaux and Neil Broussard entertained with music. Door prizes were drawn, a meal was served, and the gathering was adjourned.
FREE SERVICE: Correspondence to this column should be directed to Damon Veach, Cajuns, Creoles, Pirates and Planters, 709 Bungalow Lane, Baton Rouge, LA 70802-5337. The e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Queries and book reviews are printed as space permits, and you are encouraged to take advantage of this free service. Claitor’s Publishing can serve as a distributor for self-published genealogy titles. Go to their homepage for details on how you can obtain this excellent service.
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