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Maid of the Douglas Family

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



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Servant of the Douglas Family c. 1850

Individual portraits of domestic servants, like this one of a Douglas family servant, are extremely rare.

 

 Painting in the Louisiana State Museum, New Orleans.  One time University of Virginia Exhibit "The Atlantic Slave Trade and Slave Life in the Americas."

 

Creole servant or slave from Louisiana, 1840. The tignon or headwrap she wears was part of a law common in the French Caribbean that free black women wear the tignon so as to always be identified as non-white and a sign of humiliation. Needless to say, these black women often found elaborate ways to decorate their tignon to subvert colonial (white) authorities desire to stigmatize blackness and black hair.

 

It has been suggested that she may be "perhaps Marie Laveau, the famous voodoo priestess"

 

See also:

  • The Douglases and slavery
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    Last modified: Sunday, 20 January 2019