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The Latest Reviews of American Uprising

“A chilling and suspenseful account… of a signal episode in the history of American race relations”
The New York Times

“Rasmussen’s narrative has a breadth and sweep reminiscent of The Black Jacobins, CLR James’s classic study of the succesful slave insurrection that led to Haitin independence in 1804. Unlike that rebellion, the Louisiana uprising was brutally suppressed; this important book ensures that it will no longer be forgotten”
Financial Times

“Mr. Rasmussen, a recent graduate from Harvard, has turned his senior thesis into ‘American Uprising,’ a book on America’s largest, and little known, slave revolt. A crisp, confident writer, he tells the story with verve.”
Wall Street Journal

Rasmussen’s riveting new book, American Uprising: The Untold Story of America’s Largest Slave Revolt, is turning . . . heads, in academia and beyond. Collating clues from dust-encrusted plantation ledgers, colonial court records, obscure snippets of antebellum correspondence and the oral memory of slave descendents, Rasmussen’s study recreates the intense planning and careful timing that underpinned the audacious bid for freedom involving slaves from a dozen plantations along the river. . . . A long-lost chapter in American history is being written anew today, as southerners begin to come to terms with the previously untold story of the continent’s largest slave revolt”
Toronto Star

“Carefully researched… Vivid… Convincing… [Rasmussen] clearly is a gifted prose stylist.”
The Washington Post

Diane Rehm interviews Daniel Rasmussen on NPR

Daniel Rasmussen reads from American Uprising on All Things Considered

Daniel Rasmussen speaks on C-Span’s Book TV

Fred Kasten interviews Daniel Rasmusen for the Sound of Books on WWNO.

Harvard Magazine profiles Daniel Rasmusen

“Rasmussen vividly re-creates the slaves’ conspiratorial network…this tale deserves to be much better known, as does the larger story of slave resistance. American Uprising represents a signal achievement.”
Cleveland Plain Dealer

“Rasmussen tells the story of the revolt, with scant available material, in a narrative way that glues you to his words, unable to put the book down. The era, the planters, the plight of slavery, comes alive in a thrilling way.”
-San Francisco Book Review

“Some history books try to tell a story. Others try to turn history upside down, challenging preconceived notions about winners and losers. American Uprising does the latter. The author situates the events in larger, international political and intellectual currents, revealing the sophistication of his subjects that many histories of slave rebels fail to portray.”
The Root

“[Rasmussen] places the revolt, which was quickly and brutally put down by a coalition of planters and government forces, within the larger narratives of American expansion ad the fight against white oppression that began with the more significant slave revolution in Haiti.”
-New Yorker

“[American Uprising] offers a detailed, fascinating glimpse into a previously ignored part of history.”
Fort-Worth Star Telegram

“Daniel Rasmussen has performed an important service for American history. At the unimaginable age of 23, he has unearthed from the archives and told an amazing tale that has been buried for more than 100 years. American Uprising challenges much of what we think we know about American slavery, and offers as new freedom fighters – new American heroes – a group of Louisiana slaves who took up arms against slaveholders and nearly turned the city of New Orleans into a 19th century black republic in the American South.”
St. Louis American

“Rasmussen is a superb stylist. He sets the scene well, vividly describing early 19th century New Orleans; the revolution in Haiti, which served as the inspiration for the uprising in Louisiana; and the politics of a territory coveted by Spain, France and the United States. And Rasmussen brings to life the leaders of the plot.”
-Glenn C. Altschuler, Kansas City Star

“[Rasmussen] has illuminated a remarkable event long obscured by the years and by intentional suppression.”
-Charleston Post and Courier

“Rasmussen provides a provocative, reader-friendly, though well-researched, account of the largest slave revolt in American history, a story that’s hardly told…Rasmussen also offers a vivid glimpse into the cruel institution that accelerated Louisiana’s economy in the 19th century.”
Monroe News Star (Louisiana)

New Orleans Times-Picayune runs a major feature on the 1811 slave revolt featuring American Uprising

New Orleans Times-Picayune features Daniel Rasmussen’s New Orleans Author Tour

“Incredible true story”
New York Post

New Orleans Times-Picayune lists American Uprising as a Hot Read

The Northwest Current profiles Daniel Rasmussen

Louisiana Weekly interviews Daniel Rasmussen about American Uprising

“American Uprising grants a new and necessary look into the bravery, heroism, and savagery that find quarter in the hearts of human beings. Rasmussen – holding high the American ideals of freedom and equality – clarifies how manufactured myth can produce deformed history. By setting a significant chunk of the record straight in this brilliant must-read, he helps us begin to comprehend the complex and true history of Louisiana, the South, and our nation.”
—Clyde Edgarton, Garden & Gun Magazine

“Fortunately for those of us who want to know as much as we can about American history—good and bad—historian Daniel Rasmussen uses extensive original research and superb narrative skill to vividly recount the largest slave rebellion in U.S. history. Rasmussen carefully gives the historical context of events and deftly traces the movement of both the slave rebels and those opposed to them—the planters, the militia and the law enforcement officials—who saw the slaves as terrorists about to shatter what they considered to be the natural order of things. Anyone interested in slavery in the U.S. or in the history of our country will find this story illuminating as we strive to better understand our past.”

“Impressive work by an up-and-coming historian.”
Kirkus Reviews

“This book would be a major accomplishment for any historian; for an historian at such an early stage in his career, it is breathtaking. Rasmussen disinters the suppressed history of a slave revolt that was, in fact, the largest of its kind in US history. His scholarly detective work reveals a fascinating narrative of slavery and resistance, but it also tells us something about history itself—about how fiction can become fact, and how ‘history’ is sometimes nothing more than erasure.”
— Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

“All those interested in the history of American slavery and its relationship to the larger American experience find themselves in Dan Rasmussen’s debt because of this deeply researched, vividly written, and highly original account of the largest slave revolt in the nineteenth-century United States, which took place in Louisiana in 1811. That memory of this dramatic uprising was so long suppressed is a comment on how uncomfortable the reality of slave rebellion makes Americans. Thanks to Rasmussen we now have the full story of this dramatic moment in the struggle for freedom in this country.”
— Eric Foner

“New Orleans has been the scene of many dark adventures, but none so shocking as the slave rebellion of 1811. Daniel Rasmussen has unearthed a stunning tale of freedom and repression and told it in gripping fashion.”
— Evan Thomas

“…vividly evokes the atmosphere of New Orleans of the early 19th century and how a recalcitrant, French-rooted Louisiana and some Spanish possessions in the Deep South were incorporated into the expanding American nation through brutal revenge justice and political pressures.”
Publishers Weekly

“This is a welcome addition to popular history and an engaging read for anyone interested in this important chapter in the tragic story of American slavery.”
Library Journal

“Readers will appreciate not just the historic recollection of the attempt to overcome the oppression of slavery but also the more recent developments that have recovered it from obscurity.”

“The 1811 uprising in New Orleans, elegantly and succinctly unfolded with stunning immediacy and new research.”
American History