On November 7, 1841, nineteen enslaved African Americans rose up against the captain and crew of the brig Creole who were transporting them and 136 other slaves from Richmond, Virginia, to New Orleans slave markets. Commandeering the vessel, the rebels ordered the crew to sail to the Bahamas, where, with the support of the local Black population and British colonial officials, they gained freedom for themselves and the great majority of the other slaves on board. This was not a major uprising. Far fewer African Americans engaged in it than in Gabriel’s 1800 revolt conspiracy near Richmond; the River Road rebellion in Louisiana in 1811; Denmark Vesey’s revolt conspiracy in Charleston, South Carolina, in 1822; and, especially, Nat Turner’s revolt in eastern Virginia in 1831. But, unlike these larger undertakings, the Creole revolt succeeded in reaching its goal.

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