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The Haydel plantation, now referred to as the Whitney Heritage Plantation Museum, is located on the west bank of the Mississippi River, on the historic River Road in St. John the Baptist Parish, between Edgard and Wallace, Louisiana. The plantation’s records include documentation of enslaved Africans who were African-born, which makes it possible to know the areas from which they were taken.

The Antebellum Period

Ambroise Heidel (1702–ca.1770), a German who immigrated to Louisiana with his mother and siblings in 1721, lived on the original land tract as early as 1752. Heidel became a wealthy landowner who engaged in the business of indigo. When he died, 20 enslaved Africans were attached to his property. In 1803, the land claim made before the American ...

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