The white woman who was 16 years a slave in Louisiana

betgo

Ad Honorem
Jul 2011
6,494
It was an ideal opportunity to enslave an indentured servant, as she didn't remember much before she was brought there at 4 and her parents were gone. I wonder how many other white indentured servants were enslaved. This girl was from a lower middle class background, and presumably also was the mother's friend who discovered it and made an issue of it. Most indentured servants were starving peasants, homeless people, etc.

The situation tells something about the US compared to Europe at the time. The stories in Alsace were about how in America there was plenty of land and you could have your own farm and people elected the officials. However, there weren't many indentured servants or slaves in Europe.

If you did a movie of it, you could make up something about how the father died shortly after being taken to the plantation. It must have been hard for a shoemaker to be put to work essentially as a slave in a brutal environment.
 

Isleifson

Ad Honorem
Aug 2013
4,102
Lorraine tudesque
The Alsatian woman who discovered Salome in the cafe identified with the German community in majority French speaking New Orleans. The Wikipedia article is technically correct that Alsace became French in 1944.

A relative told me a story about her French class in 1941 when the students were translating "The Last Class", a story set in Alsace in 1873, about the last class in French at the school, and older people coming to the school to hear it. The woman teacher from France completely lost it, breaking down in tears.

The Salome Muller case occurred in Louisiana, the same place as "Twelve Years a Slave". Slave prices were high there, conditions particularly bad on sugar and cotton plantations, and there was a free wheeling frontier atmosphere and more corrupt politics from previous French and Spanish rule.

As for why Salome never claimed to white or indicated memories from before she was at the plantation, she could not have remembered anything from before age 4. She also might have been afraid of what would happened to her if she was returned as a slave to her master.
The history of Alsace - Lorraine is difficult to understand for most people.

But Alsace certainly did not became French in 1944. But already under Louis XIV.


The common wisdom in Alsace is that the story is not true.
 
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