Home > Presentations by Historians > J Spear
OUSD Teaching American History Grant II
June 29, 2005

"Jacqueline Lemelle: A Free Black Woman
in 18th Century New Orleans"

Jennifer Spear, Assistant Professor
Dept of History, University of California, Berkeley

Listen to this lecture

Chronology of Lemelle's life

1718 New Orleans founded by France

Web Links
* Links active as of June 2005
Suggest a resource


  • Spear, Jennifer M. "The Distant Past of North American Women's History" Journal of Women's History - Volume 16, Number 4, 2004, pp. 41-49 abstract

  • L. Virginia Gould, "Urban Slavery--Urban Freedom: The Manumission of Jacqueline Lemelle," in More than Chattel: Black Women and Slavery in the Americas, Blacks in the Diaspora, eds. David Barry Gaspar and Darlene Clark Hine (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1996), 298-314. Article-length biography of Lemelle. link to Amazon

  • Kimberly S. Hanger, Bounded Lives, Bounded Places: Free Black Society in Colonial New Orleans, 1769-1803 (Durham, North Carolina: Duke University Press, 1997). A community-study of free blacks in Spanish New Orleans. review of book | link to Amazon

  • Daniel L. Schafer, Anna Madgigine Jai Kinglsey: African Princess, Florida Slave, Plantation Slaveowner (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 2003).
    An innovative biography of Kinsgley who was born in Senegal about 1793, enslaved in 1806 and sold in Havana to a Florida plantation owner who would become her husband. Freed in 1811, Kingsley herself became a slaveowner although she eventually left Florida to escape increasing discrimination and racism. link to Amazon

  • Ira Berlin, Slaves Without Masters: The Free Negro in the Antebellum South (New York: New Press, 1974).
    A classic study of free African-Americans who lived in the southern states - more than two hundred and fifty thousand in 1860 - that is attentive to differences among free blacks (urban/rural, born free/freed, black/mulatto) and situates their struggles for community, liberty, economic independence, and education within the framework of increasingly hostile white-black race relations.link to Amazon

  • Melvin Patrick Ely, Israel on the Appomattox: A Southern Experiment in Black Freedom from the 1790s through the Civil War (Knopf, 2004)
    Winner of the 2005 Bancroft Prize for the best book in American History, Ely reconstructs Israel Hill, a free black community in Virginia and examines the intersecting, and often cooperating, lives of former owners and former slaves. link to Amazon

  • Edward P. Jones, The Known World (Amistad Press, 2004)
    Pulitzer Prize winning novel about a free black female slave owner and complex interracial lives in an antebellum Virginian community. link to Amazon

  • ?In Business for Themselves: Women of Color and Their Business - Dealings in Eighteenth Century Cap Français and New Orleans? By: Mikal G. Ison link to article