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By Rafe Blaufarb

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Additional info for Bonapartists in the Borderlands: French Exiles and Refugees on the Gulf Coast, 1815-1835

Sample text

98 Recent immigrants from Europe proved especially susceptible to these annual epidemics. But what was once the bane of the immigrants is now the boon of the historians, for each rumor of a new epidemic provoked a surge of anxious letters from France to the French consul, inquiring about the health of relatives who had emigrated to that plague-ridden city. These letters, scrupulously conserved by the French consulate and now available for consultation at the Centre des Archives Diplomatiques in Nantes, offer a glimpse into the lives of some of the economic migrants who ultimately took part in the Vine and Olive venture.

Copyright law is illegal and injures the author and publisher. For permission to reuse this work, contact the University of Alabama Press. 112 In fact, many refugees left in a relatively orderly fashion, with at least some of their moveable property. More valuable, however, than the commercial merchandise, sacks of coffee and sugar, household furniture, and family heirlooms that packed the holds of their departing ships were the slaves the refugees took with them. 113 But probably the most precious assets the refugees took with them were their skills, experience, and family relations.

S. Copyright law is illegal and injures the author and publisher. For permission to reuse this work, contact the University of Alabama Press. New Atlantic France / 13 can consul and departed for the United States in March 1816, leaving behind his wife and children. 54 Given the climate of reaction in France, a number of of¤cers who felt themselves to be compromised by their actions during the Hundred Days or their proximity to the former imperial power elite decided to take themselves out of harm’s way.

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