A Chronology of the St. Charles and St. James Parishers Revolt in 1811

January 7, 1811. The rebellion began late in the evening on the plantation of Colonel Manuel Andry located in the German Coast County, some thirty-six miles northwest of New Orleans near present-day Norco. According to contemporary sources the leader of the revolt was a mulatto “a yellow fellow,” probably of Santo Domingan or Jamaican origin. He was the property of the Widow Jean-Baptiste Deslondes at the time of the uprising. Charles Deslondes was in the temporary employment of Colonel Andry or Andre, the sources use alternate spellings.

January 8, 1811. Manuel Andry was wounded by an axe to the head by the rebels. His son Andry Jr. was killed, and the slaves made their way from the Andry plantation to a prearranged rendezvous with a support group, which included slaves from neighboring plantations, runaway slaves who had been living in the woods, and a large number of “maroon” slaves.

January 8, 1811. They began their march along the river toward New Orleans, divided into companies each under an officer, with the beat of drums and flags displayed marching toward Trepagnier Plantation. After killing Trepagnier, from this rendezvous point the insurgents moved southeast on the River Road toward New Orleans, attacking other plantations along the way, burring several and adding arms and additional recruits.

January 9, 1811. By the following afternoon they had arrived at the Jacques Fortier Plantation some “five leagues” distant where they “commenced killing poultry, cooking, eating, drinking and rioting.”

January 9, 1811. People began coming into New Orleans as word arrived in New Orleans about the slave rebellion. Carriage after carriage, loaded with white families and a few personal belongings, began pouring into town within hours of the initial rising.

January 10, 1811. Within twenty--four hours after the initial attack under the leadership of Manuel Andry some 80 local militia troops and vigilantes set out in pursuit of the rebels who now numbered five hundred. They attacked the rebels near the plantation of Francois Bernard Bernoudi where the rebels stood their ground with “colors displayed and full or arrogance” with their leaders mounted on horseback.

January 10, 1811. General Wade Hampton was dispatched to the scene of the rebellion in command of a detachment of regular troops and two companies of militia to take charge of all the suppression forces. Additional assistance was on the way from Baton Rouge. A company of dragoons and one light artillery under the command of Major Homer Virgil Milton.

January 10. 1811. Hampton began pursuing the rebels into the woods on the morning of the 10th. The insurrectionary were armed with cane knives, axes, hoes, other tools and a few small arms.

January 11, 1811. General Hampton’s force joined with that of Major Milton at Destrehan plantation and crushed the revolt. Hampton informs Claiborne that the chief leadership of the revolt “are taken.” By ten o’clock in the evening of January 11, Andry wrote Claiborne that the insurrection was completely broken and that the leaders, including Charles Deslondes, had been killed or captured.

January 11, 1811. Sixty were killed in the battle, seventeen missing and sixteen taken captive and held for trial.

January 13, 1811. Trial for those captured for participation in the revolt was held almost immediately. Twenty-one accused were placed on poles along the German Coast. Three of those implicated were judged innocent and six pending further investigation. What happened to the six is not known.