Whitney Plantation

by Daniel Russ on March 29, 2015

Post image for Whitney Plantation

Whitney Plantation


The Jail 

The Whitney was built outside the gaze of the press and marketers. It opened last year on Pearl Harbor Day and its first group of visitors were mostly Black scholars. The Plantation reprises the archjitecture and design ethods of the slave holder’s homes in antebellum South. White shutters, Roman Portico columns, moribund cypress slave cabins, a lugubrious depressing rectangle slave jail in the center of the complex reminds visitors that this was a place of pain. Built by an affluent white man, John Cummings, it’s beginnings were anything but humble. “I suppose it is a suspicious thing, what I’ve gone and done with the joint,” he continued, acknowledging that his decision to “spend millions I have no interest in getting back.”

The 220 year old mansion sits in New Orleans as a museum about slavery, the only one of its kind. A chemical company names Formosa once owned it and decided that they would build a plant on the property. Pressure from activists hit home and instead it was bought by Cummings and he turned it into probably the best musuem to convey the horros of slavery. A riot in the history of the plantation resulted in the murder and decapitation of anumber of slaves. Their heads were then displayed on poles around the sugar cane fields.

The very grueling and opperose task of harvesting sugar cane itself is clearly explained and demonstrated. The demeaning and dehumanizing nature of the slavery in America is preserved here like no other museum. In essence it is the Holocaust Memorial for slaves in America.

memorial high resolution

Memorial With Over 100,000 Slave Names



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