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Evergreen Plantation database shares untold stories

EDGARD – Evergreen Plantation is committed to telling the stories of the men, women and children who were enslaved there. After years of in-depth research, Evergreen’s historians have amassed a vast collection of primary source documents that shed light on the individuals who were purchased and brought there to labor in the sugar cane fields as well as those who were born into slavery in the cabins that still stand today.

Detailed biographical essays on the lives of enslaved individuals are also featured on the website, containing significant data obtained from the Civil War pension files of slaves who joined the Union army. These accounts illuminate the experiences of individuals whose stories have previously gone untold, contributing a more balanced approach to America’s historical narrative.

This digital archive will serve as a resource for descendants, teachers, students, historians, genealogists and visitors. The database is the work of researcher and historian Katy Morlas Shannon. The research remains ongoing and will be updated as new discoveries are made. The plantation is open for tours, and the research and interpretative center is open free of charge to the public. See the website for details.

The documents used to create this database include estate inventories, succession records and bills of sale, as well as sacramental records from the Archdiocese of New Orleans recording baptisms and funerals. This data provides insight into the enslaved community’s scope of skills, kinship networks, family relationships and places of origin. It allows for comparative analysis and a better understanding of the lives of the enslaved.

To access the database, go to: https://www.evergreenplantation.org/slavery-database

Evergreen Plantation, a National Historic Landmark with 37 buildings on the National Register of Historic Places, remains intact and connected to the historically stable community that surrounds it. The online database is and will remain a work in progress. All are invited to join the journey of discovery by following the progress at evergreenplantation.org.