Rebels in Arms: Black Resistance and the Fight for Freedom in the Anglo-Atlantic

Written by:
Justin Iverson
Narrated by:
William Andrew Quinn

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
December 2022
9 hours 39 minutes
Enslaved Black people took up arms and fought in nearly every colonial conflict in early British North America. They sometimes served as loyal soldiers to protect and promote their owners' interests in the hope that they might be freed or be rewarded for their service. But for many Black combatants, war and armed conflict offered an opportunity to attack the chattel slave system itself and promote Black emancipation and freedom.

In six cases, starting in 1676 with Nathaniel Bacon's Rebellion in Virginia and ending in 1865 with the First South Carolina Volunteer Infantry Regiment near Charleston, Rebels in Arms tells the long story of how enslaved soldiers and Maroons learned how to use military service and armed conflict to fight for their own interests. Using a comparative Atlantic analysis that uncovers new perspectives on major military conflicts in British North American history, he reveals how enslaved people used these conflicts to lay the groundwork for abolition in 1865. Over the nearly two-hundred-year history of these struggles, enslaved resistance in the British Atlantic world became increasingly militarized, and enslaved soldiers, Maroons, and plantation rebels together increasingly relied on military institutions and operations to achieve their goals.
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