The Brutal Rampage
Nat began with seven fellow slaves on the night of August 21. They murdered the Travis family in their sleep using axes, hatchets and blunt instruments to avoid the noise of firearms. Then they moved from house to house, murdering white men, women and children, and gathering slaves and free blacks as they went. The rebel force ultimately numbered about fifty as they moved toward the county seat of Jerusalem (now Courtland) to seize the armory.
The plan was ill-conceived and the force was disorganized; many were drunk. After a forty-eight hour rampage in which fifty-five whites were killed, state militia dispersed the rebels outside Jerusalem. Ultimately fifty-six blacks were tried, convicted and executed for alleged connections to the uprising. Hundreds more blacks were beaten, tortured and murdered in reprisals by state and federal troops.
Nat and some of his followers eluded capture until October 30 when they were finally apprehended. In Jerusalem, Nat was tried, convicted and sentenced to death. He was hanged along with sixteen followers on November 11.
· 1 decade ago