Nat Turner (October 2, 1800 – November 11, 1831)

October 2, 2020


The seeds of unrest were brewing in 1831, 30 years before the Civil War.

According to Gray (1831) in his The Confessions of Nat Turner, Nat Turner was an enslaved preacher from Southhampton County, Virginia who saw himself as a leader to fight & abolish slavery.  Gray states, “[He] was ordained for some great purpose in the hands of the Almighty. He ‘heard a loud noise in the heavens’ while working in Moore’s fields on May 12, ‘and the Spirit instantly appeared to me and said the Serpent was loosened, and Christ had laid down the yoke he had borne for the sins of men, and that I should take it on and fight against the Serpent, for the time was fast approaching when the first should be last and the last should be first'”.

Led by Turner, the slave rebellion occurred in August 1831 after a blue sun & pale, smoky skies were seen across Virginia & the South as a sign to begin the revolution.  This followed an Annular Solar Eclipse in February, which was further considered a sign by Turner that this was a sign that he was the one to lead this charge to fix what was morally right.  He considered this a Divine message from God.  Initially, recruits were slaves from his county, but the message spread.

As the smoky skies continued to darken & the sun fade more & more into a bluish, faint ball, he & his group considered it time to begin the fight.  The strike began with attacks on slave owners, but a local militia quickly put the rebellion down & most of those involved were executed, including Turner.

Blak Rant

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