About this Database:
This database makes accessible to the public all available information pertaining to the enslaved men and women who built and sustained Oak Alley. It brings to light attributes of personhood including names, origins and relationships, and presents them simultaneously with the marks of slavery that dehumanized--such as appraised value. Together, it is our aim to offer a resource for students and researchers, and enable them to better understand the people of one specific sugar plantation.
Oak Alley was one of multiple plantations in St. James Parish owned by the Roman family, including the estates of Jacques E. Roman and his wife Louise Patin, as well as their children: Sosthene and Zenon (Magnolia Plantation), Andre Bienvenu (Cabanocey), Victorin, daughter Josephine (Le Petit Versailles), and J.T Roman (Oak Alley). It was an agricultural empire built on interdependence and consequently, the family`s relationships shaped all aspects of plantation life, including their enslaved populations. As a result, this database focuses on the individuals enslaved at Oak Alley, but entries often include other Roman family members and transactions that occurred on other plantations.
Oak Alley has very slim holdings pertaining to the years it operated as a slave-holding plantation. As a result, the information presented here has been culled from: The St. James Parish Courthouse, The Archdiocese of Baton Rouge Sacramental Records, Tulane University, and New Orleans Notarial Archives. Please forward any interest in document copies to the respective institution.
Development of this database was made possible by our visitors, whose attendance and support helps us further our Mission.
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