The “Samba Rebellion” of 1731

0 Posted by - August 31, 2017 - SLAVERY

The Natchez Revolt is one of the most familiar slave rebellions in Louisiana history and the U.S. Then you have conspiracies to start rebellions. In some cases there are fictional claims to stir fear—such as the Samba Rebellion in Louisiana.

The Samba Rebellion
So, what was the Samba Rebellion supposed to be if it happened? Samba—who was involved in rebellions at home in West Africa—was simply to kill white people and take over the area. If this sounds like a very vague plan with no firm plan to proceed further, you would be correct. It’s the kind of non-event or speculation that can stoke fear if needed.

Samba’s plan was said to have been revealed after a slave woman had a dispute with a drunk French marine. The supposed leader of the rebellion was tortured but revealed nothing. As a result, others involved were tortured, revealed details, and ultimately all slaves involved were killed. The event was said to have taken place in 1731.

Published Accounts
The main account of the event comes from “Historie de la Louisiane” by Antoine-Simon Le Page du Pratz. What is interesting about the event is that no evidence exists stating it occurred. No newspaper articles, letters, chronicles, legal proceedings—nothing of note. The only evidence of the time is in Le Page du Pratz’s writings. Over two centuries later in 1936, the Samba Rebellion was a topic of discussion by W.E.B. Du Bois in the NAACP’s “The Crisis” magazine. Du Bois mentioned that Samba’s plan was to kill all the White people and enslave non-Bambara Black people.


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