Nat Turner

Slave Rebellion


Nat Turner was Born October 2, 1800, Southampton County, VA . And Died November 11, 1831, Court-land, VA.


Nat Turner was Born October 2, 1800, Southampton County, VA . And Died November 11, 1831, Court-land, VA. As a kid, Turner was thought to have some special talent because he could describe things that happened before he was even born. Some even remarked that he "surely would be a prophet," later to his confession. His mother Nancy and grandmother told Turner that he "was intended for some great purpose." Turner was deeply religious and spent much of his time reading the Bible and praying.


Over the years, Turner worked on a number of different plantations. He ran away from Samuel Turner, his former owner's brother, in 1821.After thirty days hiding in the woods, Turner came back to Turner's plantation after he received what he believed to be a sign from God After Samuel Turner's death, Nat Turner became the slave of Thomas Moore and then the property of his widow. When she married John Travis, Nat Turner went to work on Travis's lands.


Believing in signs and hearing divine voices, Turner had a vision in 1825 of a bloody conflict between black and white spirits. Turner took a solar eclipse that occurred in February 1831 as a signal that the time to rise up had come. He recruited several other slaves to join him in his cause. On August 21, 1831, Turner and his supporters began their revolt against slave owners with the killing the Travis family. Turner gathered more supporters growing to a group of up to 40 or 50 slaves as he and his men continued their killing spree through the county.


While Turner hid away from the angry white mobs took their revenge on the blacks of Southampton County. Estimates range from approximately 100 to 200 African Americans were killed after the rebellion. Turner was eventually captured on October 30, 1831. He was represented by lawyer Thomas R. Gray, who wrote down Turner's confession. Turner said he was not guilty during his trail, believing that his rebellion was the work of God. He was sentenced to death by hanging, and this sentence was carried out on November 11, 1831. Many of his conspirators met the same fate as Turner.
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