Creolizing Currents: Bambara

Indigo Production
Left, detail of Alexandre de Batz, "Plan general du Fort Septentrional du Detour des Anglois" (1749). Library of Congress, Geography and Map Division (g4014f.lh000949).
Top Right, Antoine Simon Le Page du Pratz, Historie de la Louisiane, Paris, 1758. Courtesy the Historic New Orleans Collection (1980.205.39).
Bottom Right, Joseph Pitton de Tournefort, Elémens de Botanique, Paris, 1719. Courtesy the Historic New Orleans Collection (2009.0144.3).

A native Louisiana variety of indigo grew along the Mississippi River. The method of processing the indigo was brought by the Bambara from the Senegal and Gambia Rivers of Senegal and Mali. Here is a major indigoterie, indicated by Alexandre de Batz on the plantation of J. B. Prévost on the Mississippi at English Turn. Fort St. Leon was built adjacent, one half by Villars du Breuil and one half by Jonathas Darby.

The New Orleans African American Museum (NOAAM) is located in Faubourg Treme, at 1418 Governor Nicholls Street, phone (504) 566-1136.

Generous assistance provided by the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and Foundation.