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American Uprising

The Untold Story of America's Largest Slave Revolt

by Daniel Rasmussen

Hardcover, 276 pages, Harpercollins, List Price: $26.99 |


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American Uprising
The Untold Story of America's Largest Slave Revolt
Daniel Rasmussen

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Book Summary

The author, a historian reveals the long forgotten history of America's largest slave uprising, the New Orleans slave revolt of 1811 that nearly toppled New Orleans and changed the course of American history. In this narrative, he offers new insight into American expansionism, the path to Civil War, and the earliest grassroots push to overcome slavery. Five hundred slaves, dressed in military uniforms and armed with guns, cane knives, and axes, rose up from the plantations around New Orleans and set out to conquer the city. Ethnically diverse, politically astute, and highly organized, this self made army challenged not only the economic system of plantation agriculture but also American expansion. Their march represented the largest act of armed resistance against slavery in the history of the United States. The work is the story of this elaborate plot, the rebel army's dramatic march on the city, and its shocking conclusion. No North American slave uprising, not Gabriel Prosser's, not Denmark Vesey's, not Nat Turner's, has rivaled the scale of this rebellion either in terms of the number of the slaves involved or the number who were killed. More than one hundred slaves were slaughtered by federal troops and French planters, who then sought to write theevent out of history and prevent the spread of the slaves' revolutionary philosophy. With the Haitian revolution a recent memory and the War of 1812 looming on the horizon, the revolt had epic consequences for America. Through original research, the author offers a window into the young, expansionist country, illuminating the early history of New Orleans and providing new insight into the path to the Civil War and the slave revolutionaries who fought and died for justice and the hope of freedom.

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The United States' largest slave uprising began in 1811, on a plantation 41 miles from New Orleans. AP/New York Public Library hide caption

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AP/New York Public Library

'American Rising': When Slaves Attacked New Orleans

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