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In 1984, Dr. Gwendolyn Hall, a professor emerita of history at Rutgers University, stumbled upon a treasure of historical data in a courthouse in Pointe Coupee Parish, Louisiana. For the next 15 years, Dr. Hall rummaged through documents from all over Louisiana (as well as archives in France, Spain and Texas) and uncovered the background of approximately 100,000 slaves who were brought to Louisiana in the 18th and 19th centuries. Armed with this information, Dr. Hall designed and created a database into which she recorded and calculated the information she obtained from these documents regarding African slave names, genders, ages, occupations, illnesses, family relationships, ethnicity, places of origin, prices paid by slave owners, and slave testimonials and emancipations. Together, Dr. Hall, the Center for the Public Domain, and ibiblio.org presents this online collection of significant historical data. The user-friendly database is searchable by name, gender, racial designation, and plantation or origin. From historians, genealogists, anthropologists, geneticists, and linguists, to Americans seeking keys to their past, there are many who can benefit from this freely accessible information.
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