Oakland Plantation was founded by Jean Pierre Emanuel Prud’homme, who began farming the area in 1785 and received a Spanish land grant in 1789. Eight generations of his French Creole family lived and worked on this land, managing to keep the physical complex intact for two centuries. Because of the integrity of the resources here, the site has been designated as a National Historic Landmark.
The skills and strengths of enslaved African-Americans are evident in the buildings they constructed at Oakland Plantation. The proficiency of enslaved blacksmiths such as Solomon Williams, for example, can be seen in iron latches and hinges, in numerous grave crosses from the slave cemetery, and in a collection of skillfully made well-drilling tools found on Oakland Plantation.
Last updated: May 13, 2021