Map of the Two Natchez Forts Captured in February 1730 by the French, Choctaw, Tunica, Acolapissa, and Houma
This plan shows the site of the two forts captured by the French in February 1730 as part of their response to a massacre by the Natchez late the previous year. The conflict between the French and the Natchez had its origins in disputes over land. The Compagnie d’Occident (later the Compagnie des Indes) had established several tobacco plantations in the environs of Fort Rosalie (close to present-day Natchez, Mississippi), near several Indian villages. On November 28, 1729, the Natchez staged an uprising, the principal cause of which was the attempt by a French commander to relocate an Indian village in order to establish a new plantation. The Indians seized Fort Rosalie and killed more than 200 French soldiers and colonists, while taking prisoner 50 women and children as well as at least 150 African slaves, many of whom sought to win their freedom by siding with the Indians. Fearing a general Indian uprising, the French responded by systematically attacking the Natchez and destroying their villages. Early in the campaign, the French laid siege to the two Natchez forts near Fort Rosalie, assisted by their Indian allies, who included Tunica, Houma, and Choctaw. At the end of 12 days, the Natchez freed all of the captives they had taken in November and escaped under cover of night. The map shows the two forts, the Mississippi River, and the line of attack by the French and their allies. It is unknown who made the map, but a note indicates that it was drawn by hand in New Orleans on April 6, 1730. Scale is indicated in toises, an old French unit of measurement; one toise equals about 1.95 meters.
Title in Original Language
Plans des Deux Forts des Natchez Assiegez au mois de fevrier 1730 Par les Français Tchactas Tonicas Colapissas et Oumas. La présente carte levée sur les lieux à l'Estime faite et dessinée a la N.lle Orleans Le six avril mil sept cent trente
Type of Item
1 drawing : pen, ink wash and watercolor ; 31 x 30.8 centimeters
Last updated: November 4, 2015