Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Geography and Anthropology

Document Type



The 1811 German Coast uprising is known as one of the largest enslaved revolts in the United States. While previous studies have provided valuable insights into the event, this dissertation offers a reexamination with a focus on the landscape. I view the landscape as the physical environment and the social and cultural contexts embedded within it. Through this lens, the uprising is recognized as an act of rebellion informed by the spaces in which it took place.

I employ a multidisciplinary framework that analyzes archaeological data and documentary evidence. I also draw on theories from studies of resistance and power in slavery, landscape and eventful archaeology, and spatiality to reconstruct the changing landscapes of the German Coast and assess how the physical plantation settings reflected the conditions and consequences of the rebellion. In addition, I examine how natural features like swamps and woodlands were strategically leveraged in acts of resistance.

Findings reveal that the 1811 uprising was not an isolated incident but part of a long history of resistance. Furthermore, I argue that the landscape played a role in facilitating these acts of resistance. Additionally, I assert that enslaved women’s cabins were instrumental in the planning and execution of the uprising.

This study adds to the literature on resistance and power by offering a framework to analyze the material and social dynamics of enslaved rebellion. It also contributes to broader historical narratives of slavery in the United States by highlighting the multiple ways enslaved people resisted bondage.



Committee Chair

Jackson, Joyce M.


Available for download on Sunday, May 18, 2031