Sep 18View Source
Hi Linda – it may help to know that there was a significant emigration from St. Helena after the opening of the Suez Canal: for example in 1871, shortly after the arrival of Governor Patey in 1870, the official establishment was severely reduced, and over 400 people including liberated slaves, emigrated from the island to both South Africa and other places.
Just to put you right on the American plans to spring Napoleon, these were current between about 1817 and his death in 1821, so they were a bit before your mentioned period of the 1830’s. From memory, the plan was to send a ship under American colours and to get Napoleon aboard by any means possible, and then to take him to the States, possibly to Louisiana, where he would have been able to live the life of a country gentleman – a desire he had expressed in 1815, but had wanted to do so in England!
I have finally decided to write my family's journey form St. Helena in the South Atlantic to New Orleans, LA. The online class that I am taking to help me write my story suggests to use historical information in the narrative. My St. Helena - Hopkins and Coley (Cooley) family arrived before 1870 in Louisiana. I just don't know what compelled them to choose New Orleans. I know that one male relative left St. Helena and ended up in Connecticut and Rhode Island. What brought him to that area? As far as I know, I think the man in question left his wife and a few kids behind in St. Helena. I understand that he moved on to Australia in the 1900's!!
Last night I was going through one of the US historical newspaper sites that I subscribed to and I was amazed at the number of articles in the New Orleans Times Picayune about the island of St. Helena in the South Atlantic in the 1860s!!!! Mind you, in the United States - there is a St. Helena parish in Louisiana, a St. Helena, Montana, a St. Helena, South Carolina and even a St. Helena, California. However, all the articles that I found in the New Orleans Times Picayune were about the island of St. Helena in the South Atlantic. Some were about the depressed economy in the 1860's and a lot were about comparing Napoleon's exile to the Confederate general - Jefferson Davis!!! (Were the St. Helena folks following the Civil War activity in the US in the 1860s???)
In my story about my family, I want to include some historical info and I do know that with the opening of the Suez Canal in the 1860's and the closing of the British Naval base on St. Helena, people were leaving the island due to economic reasons. I want to find out why my family decided to travel in 1860 to New Orleans and what were the reasons???? The articles in the New Orleans newspapers implies that there was some connection between New Orleans and St. Helena. Sure, I read all about the attempt to save/rescue Napoleon from St. Helena that was originated in New Orleans in the 1830's. The house intended for Napoleon exists today in New Orleans as a tavern. However, my Coley (Cooley) and Hopkins relatives left the island in the 1860's? Napoleon died in the 1830's!!!!
Why did my relatives choose New Orleans over St. Helena! How did they afford to get to New Orleans. The New Orleans papers described St. Helena in the 1860s as having the perfect weather and a great place to visit!!!! Why was this important to people living in New Orleans, Louisiana!!!
If any of you are historians, please shed some light on this matter. I am so baffled!
I would greatly appreciate any information!