CARICOM Compilation Archive (CCA): Switzerland’s Involvement in Slavery and Colonialism ALT

This database started in 2018/19 as a compilation by Hans Fässler, MA Zurich University, historian from St.Gallen (Switzerland), for the attention of the CARICOM Reparations Commission. It was judged by Dr. Klaus Stuckert, researcher and lecturer on Caribbean and Australian literature, «… the most comprehensive compilation of Swiss involvement in Caribbean plantation slavery that I know of …». Now it has turned into an archive of ideally all Swiss involvement in slavery, the slave trade, anti-Black racism and colonialism, in the Caribbean – and beyond. Klaus Stuckert passed away on 31st October 2022. May the earth be light on him!

For an introduction to the archive, its concept and its history, see here.

This archive, especially chapter 4.1 «Anti-Black Racism and Ideologies Relevant to Caribbean Economic Space», contains passages which may disturb certain readers on account of rendering racist thought or slurs in original quotations. 

How to Use the Archive

CARICOM Compilation Archive (CCA) is basically just one single web-page of my website, in order to facilitate research and continuing additions. You can find decimal chapters (e.g. «1.3 Barbados» or «3.1.1 Alabama»), names of individuals (e.g. «Bourcard» or «Guisan»), place-names (e.g. «Berne» or «Berbice»), plantation-names (e.g. «Oberberg» or «De Vriendschap»), names of slave-ships («Pays de Vaud» or «Réparateur»), or products (e.g. «sugar» or «indigo») by a text research: On Apple computers use [cmd] + [f], on Windows computers [STRG] + [f] or [ctrl] + [f].

Table of Contents


1.1 Antigua and Barbuda
1.2 Bahamas
1.3 Barbados
1.4 Dominica
1.5 Grenada

1.6 Guyana (Guiana): Dutch/English colonies «Demerara», «Essequibo», and «Berbice»
1.6.1 Berbice
1.6.2 Demerara (Demerrara, Demerary)
1.6.3 Essequibo

1.7 Haiti (colony «Saint-Domingue»)
1.7.1 Economic
1.7.2 Military
1.7.3 Ideological

1.8 Jamaica
1.9 Montserrat
1.10 St. Vincent & The Grenadines
1.11 Suriname
1.12 Trinidad and Tobago


2.1 Cuba
2.2 Netherlands Antilles (colonies «Aruba», «Bonaire», «Curaçao», «St. Eustacius»)
2.3 French West Indies (colonies «Guiana», «Guadeloupe», «Martinique»)
2.4 Danish West Indies (colonies «St. John», «St. Croix», and «St. Thomas»)
2.5 Venezuela
2.6 Bermudas

3 – – BEYOND THE CARIBBEAN (under construction)

3.1. North America (the Thirteen Colonies and the United States)
3.1.1 Alabama
3.1.2 Arkansas
3.1.3 California
3.1.4 Carolinas
3.1.5 Florida
3.1.6 Georgia
3.1.7 Kentucky
3.1.8 Louisiana
3.1.9 Mississippi
3.1.10 New York
3.1.11 Tennessee
3.1.12 Texas
3.1.13 Virginia

3.2 Canada
3.3 Brazil (Colonial Brazil, United Kingdom with Portugal, independent empire)
3.4 Southern Africa
3.5 East Indies
3.6 Egypt


4.1 Anti-Black Racism and Ideologies Relevant to Caribbean Economic Space
4.2 Marine Navigation
4.3 African and European Logistics




1.1. Antigua and Barbuda

=> Arthur Thellusson, son of Lord Rendlesham and grandson of Peter Thellusson, born into a Geneva banking family, who had bought the original Brodsworth Hall estate in South Yorkshire (GB) in 1790, married the daughter of Antigua slave owner Sir Christopher Bethell-Codrington.

=> In her book A Small Place (1988), the Antiguan writer Jamaica Kincaid indicts the Antiguan government, the tourist industry and Antigua’s British colonial legacy by saying:

«Have you ever wondered to yourself why it is that all people like me seem to have learned from you is how to imprison and murder each other, how to govern badly, and how to take the wealth of your country and place it in Swiss bank accounts? Have you ever wondered why it is that all we seem to have learned from you is how to corrupt our societies and how to be tyrants? You will have to accept that this is mostly your fault.»

=> Hans Conrad Hottinger (Hottinguer) (1764–1841) from Zurich started in the textile (indiennes) business in Mulhouse, then went into banking, learning his trade with Passavant and de Candolle in Geneva. During the «terror» of the French Revolution, he left Paris for the USA, where he stayed for three years. In 1793, he married Martha Eliza Redwood (1774–1830) from Newport (Rhode Island) and was thus related to a family which had been in the sugar and plantation business between England, New England, Africa, and the Caribbean since the 17th century. Their trading empire began with a sugar plantation called Cassada Garden on Antigua. Jean-Henri Hottinguer (1803-1866) took over his father’s business in Paris, and the «Maison Hottinguer» became one of the most important international commercial enterprises, specialising in trade with cotton and other colonial commodities.

=> Hans Conrad Hottinger’s business partner was Denis de Rougemont (1759­–1839) from Saint-Aubin and Neuchâtel, banker, Prussian financial agent, major Banque de France shareholder and real estate owner in Paris and Berne. He bought the Hôtel DuPeyrou in Neuchâtel in 1816. In 1837, his son Abraham Denis Alfred de Rougemont (1802–1868), who was a good friend of Heinrich Escher’s (1776–1853), bought Schadau Castle and the adjoining large estate in Thun BE and had the Castle rebuilt in a style inspired by Tudor gothic and Loire castles. His other son, Rodolphe Emile Adolphe de Rougement (1805–1844), had bought castle Chartreuse on the opposite bank of the Aare river in Thun in 1831. The de Rougement family were related to the de Pourtalès and the de Pury families of Neuchâtel with their close ties to the transatlantic slavery system.

1.2 Bahamas

=> Marx Rütimeyer‏‎ (b. 1647) from Vinelz (Canton of Berne) worked as a goldminer in the Bahamas and died there.

=> In 1718, Captain Woodes Rogers (1679-1732) accompanied 250 Swiss, Huguenot, and German Palatinate farmers on an expedition to settle the Bahamas. Together with 100 foot-soldiers, they sailed from London to New Providence on the 460-ton East Indiaman «Delicia».

1.3 Barbados

=> In 1677, Swiss medical doctor Felix Christian Spoerri (1615-1680) from Zurich wrote a detailed description of Barbados («Americanische Reiss-Beschreibung nach den Caribes Insslen, und Neu-Engelland»), which he had visited in 1661 and 1662, including the slavery economy, which produced sugar, tobacco, cotton, and indigo.

=> In his travelogue «Bericht des Grafen Karl von Zinzendorf über seine handelspolitische Studienreise durch die Schweiz 1764», the Austrian count describes the commercial activities of the Ammann banking and merchant company from Schaffhausen (N Switzerland), which traded in cotton, indigo, sugar, and tobacco. The first quality cotton came from Curaçao and Berbice, but from the latter there were no more imports because «the colony has been ruined». From that cotton, the Toggenburg textile industry (today Canton of St.Gallen) produced muslin fabrics. Curaçao cotton was very rare: a ship that transported 60 bales from Saint Domingue only carried 6 from Curaçao. The second quality variety came from Martinique and Saint-Domingue and was transported to Switzerland via Marseilles, Lyon, Belfort and Basel. The third (and worst) quality cotton came from Barbados. Nearly 1000 bags of cotton were imported by Ammann every year and were processed in the Toggenburg and Glarus area. In the second half of the 18th century, 35% of the cotton it delivered into the Zurich, Berne/Aargau, Toggenburg, and Appenzell areas were from Berbice or Essequibo. The Ammann company did business with such slave trading firms as Schalch & Cie., Hegner, Gier & Cie., Pelloutier, Petitpierres, Tourton & Baur, and Bourcards. From Schalch & Cie alone, Ammann received in six years deliveries of indigo worth 600,000 guilders.  The archive of Johann Jakob Amman (1699–1777) and his son Johann Heinrich (1722–1794) has been handed down to the Frey family and – being a private archive – is still not accessible. Industrial magnate Hermann Frey (1844–1928) was a board member of the «Bank in Schaffhausen», which merged into the «Schweizerische Bankverein» and later UBS. The banking house «Ammann» was liquidated as late as 1921.

=> 1719-1734, the city state of Berne as well as the Berne-based banking houses of «Malacrida» and «Samuel Müller» held shares in the speculative South Sea Company. With 253,000 £, Berne was the biggest single investor. The South Sea Company had slave deposits on Barbados, and all in all, it shipped 20,000 slaves from Africa to the New World.

=> In 1767, Peter Thelluson (1737-1797), a Swiss banker, entrepreneur and slave-owner from Geneva, acquired a share in the slaver «Liberty», which transported 227 enslaved Africans from West Africa to Barbados. 45 died during the Middle Passage.

=> After 1800, Anton Schulthess from a Zurich merchant and banking family served as captain in the British Royal-African-Corps in Barbados. In 1814, his elder brother, Colonel Paravicin Schulthess (1757-1843), applied to the British ambassador for a death certificate for his brother, who had apparently deceased some years earlier.

1.4 Dominica

=> Jean-Antoine Bertrand (1726-1780) from the City of Geneva became a merchant in Dominica in 1764, his brother Charles (born 1716) followed him in 1775. Together they bought properties in St. Patrick and St. David Parishes, including an estate in Grand Bay which they called «Geneva» after the family’s former home in Switzerland. In 1791, an insurrection known as «New Year’s Day Revolt» occurred, in which slaves from Geneva most probably participated. The rebels asked for three days to work on their provision grounds, an increase from the customary day and a half. In 1820, the plantation was co-owned by a Charles Bertrand and Charles Court and had 253 slaves (138 females, 115 males).

1.5 Grenada

=> The Peschiers were Huguenots from the south of France who settled in Geneva. Pierre Peschier (1688–1766) was a pharmacist with links to England. His son Jean (b. 1735) settled in Grenada, possibly as a member of the British military, where he married Rose de Belgens from a family rich plantation owners. His younger brother Henri (b. 1741) joined him later, and, financed by their brother Jean Antoine, who still lived in Geneva, the two Peschier brothers acquired a plantation of 192 acres called Bonne Chance with at least 80 slaves. They paid 12,600 livres for it. The brothers also became merchants in the capital and chief port of St.George’s. Henri (Henry) then decided to emigrate to Trinidad, where he arrived in 1781 with some slaves.

=> Paul Coulon (1731 – 1820) from Neuchâtel (NW Switzerland), together with Jacques Louis Pourtalès (1722–1814) from Neuchâtel and Johann Jakob Thurneysen (1729–1784) from Bâle, owned the plantations Bellair (coffee and cocoa), Mont SaintJean (coffee), La Conférence (sugar), Clavier, and Larcher. Until 1797, they produced sugar, coffee, cocoa, and cotton with about 100 to 200 slaves on each plantation. The plantations were administered by François und Pierre de Meuron from Neuchâtel. One of them married a woman qualified in the racist terminology of the island a «quarteronne», daughter of white father and a mulatto mother and took her home with him to Neuchâtel.

=> François Aimé Louis Dumoulin (1753-1834) from Vevey (Canton of Berne/Vaud) left Switzerland at the age of 20 for the Caribbean and lived on Grenada 1773–1783. He worked as a painter, secretary to the governor of the island, and merchant. In 1778, he was pressed into the English army of Governor MacCartney.

=> Laurenz Vonwiller (1759–1825) from the City of St.Gallen (NE Switzerland) migrated to Grenada around 1790, probably to try and bring back profitability to three plantations owned by the Swiss Johann Jakob Thurneysen and Jacques-Louis Pourtalès since 1770. In Grenada, where he felt very much at home, Vonwiller married twice (1790 and 1797). For his role in the 1795 revolt of the French Creoles against British rule, he was tried for treason and imprisoned 1798–1800 He attempted to go back to St.Gallen with his wife and was said to have been refused entry. He then returned to Grenada, where he died in 1825. His son Georg Ludwig (1793­–1835) moved to Trinidad, where he «imported» a female slave in 1822. He married Gabrielle d’Ey, and they had four children: Georg Heinrich (born 1824 in Grenada), Franz Adolf (b. 1826), Andreas (b. 1833). and Louise Maria Anna (b. 1834).

=> The banking company «Marcuard, Beuther & Cie.» from Berne were creditors of a trading house active on St. Eustacius, Grenada und Saint-Domingue.

=> Jean Henri (1792-1873) worked on St. Eustacius for the merchant house and shipowners of «Fabry & Sugnin». He later returned to Switzerland (Canton of Vaud), from where he continued his St. Eustacius business activities. He cooperated with Samuel Chollet and his cousin Louis Chollet from Moudon (then Berne, today Canton of Vaud).

=> Jean David Fatio and Richard Besanquet from Vevey (Canton of Berne/Vaud, W Switzerland) were owners of coffee and cocoa plantations, including their slaves, on Grenada and transmitted their knowledge of the cocoa and chocolate business to Switzerland.

=> François Aimé Louis Dumoulin (1753-1834) from Vevey (Canton of Berne/Vaud, W Switzerland) was a merchant who went to England in 1772 and from there to Grenada, where he painted and produced plans in the service of the governor.

=> Théophile Cazenove (1708–1760) from a Geneva family of Huguenots settled in London in the mid-eighteenth century with his son Jean Henri, a merchant who was naturalised in 1762. Jean Henri (John Henry) Cazenove (1737– 1817) operated as a merchant dealing with the French and English East India Company, building a large connection to Lisbon, as well as drawing on connections in France and Amsterdam. He became involved in finance at an early stage, dealing in government stock and later securing business on behalf of the US government, distributing dividend payments to English holders of US securities. In 1772, he was involved in supplying bonds to the owner of Bacolet plantation on Grenada, one of the most profitable Grenada sugar estates with over 30 slaves. John Henry Cazenove was a merchant and director of the East India Company, probably in the 1760s. In 1767, his brother Charles Cazenove (1735-1790) left for Bengal by order of the Danish East India Company. In 1768 he appeared there as the «chief of the Danish factory» (trading post).

=> => The UK Slave Register 1813–1834 has 280 slaves in the hands of owners named Cazenove, Cazeneuve, Casenave, Casnave, etc. in Grenada, Trinidad, and Mauritius. 

=> In 1768, Peter Thelluson (1737-1797), a Swiss banker and entrepreneur from Geneva, set up as a merchant banker in London. He acquired a share in the 330 acres sugar estate Conference in Grenada with 155 enslaved people, when the former owner failed to pay his debts. In 1772, he lent money to the owner of Bacolet Estate, a 384 acres sugar plantation, partly secured on 101 enslaved people who lived upon the property. Thelluson amassed a huge fortune, a great part of which came from money related to the slavery economy: He undertook widespread lending of money in the Caribbean, as the Grenadines, Guadeloupe and Martinique. He traded in goods used in the slave trade and in colonial goods as well (slave-produced sugar and coffee). He was involved in slave-trading itself and in close contact with Liverpool slave-traders. He owned the slave ship «Lottery», which in 1765/66 sailed from London to Grenada via the Windward Coast, Cape Mount and Bassa with 211/172 slaves. He was also active in the beads and cowry trade, a commodity often used as currency in the slave trade. Peter Thelluson’s son Peter Isaac Thelluson (1761-1808) was probably brought into the family merchant house at the early age of 15, and he was later a known associate of slavers and global traders. He was a director of the Bank of England (1787–1806).

1.6 Guyana (Guiana): Dutch/English colonies «Demerar, «Essequibo», and «Berbice»

For the chapters on Guyana, especially on the colony of Berbice, I owe a great deal to the profound knowledge and the persistent research activities of Dr. Klaus Stuckert, researcher and former lecturer on Caribbean literature (Wetzikon ZH, Switzerland). Klaus Stuckert passed away on 31st October 2022. May he rest in peace! His contributions to colonial research will live on.

=> In his travelogue «Bericht des Grafen Karl von Zinzendorf über seine handelspolitische Studienreise durch die Schweiz 1764», the Austrian count describes the commercial activities of the Ammann banking and merchant company from Schaffhausen (N Switzerland), which traded in cotton, indigo, sugar, and tobacco. The first quality cotton came from Curaçao and Berbice, but from the latter there were no more imports because «the colony has been ruined». From that cotton, the Toggenburg textile industry (today Canton of St.Gallen) produced muslin fabrics. Curaçao cotton was very rare: a ship that transported 60 bales from Saint Domingue only carried 6 from Curaçao. The second quality variety came from Martinique and Saint-Domingue and was transported to Switzerland via Marseilles, Lyon, Belfort and Basel. The third (and worst) quality cotton came from Barbados. Nearly 1000 bags of cotton were imported by Ammann every year and were processed in the Toggenburg and Glarus area. In the second half of the 18th century, 35% of the cotton delivered into the Zurich, Berne/Aargau, Toggenburg, and Appenzell areas by the Ammann company was from Berbice or Essequibo. The Ammann company did business with such slave trading firms as Schalch & Cie., Hegner, Gier & Cie., Pelloutier, Petitpierres, Tourton & Baur, and Bourcards. From Schalch & Cie alone, Ammann received in six years deliveries of indigo worth 600,000 guilders.  The archive of Johann Jakob Amman (1699–1777) and his son Johann Heinrich (1722–1794) has been handed down to the Frey family and – being a private archive – is still nor accessible. Industrial magnate Hermann Frey (1844–1928) was a board member of the «Bank in Schaffhausen», which merged into the «Schweizerische Bankverein» and later UBS. The banking house «Ammann» was liquidated as late as 1921.

=> During the continental blockade, a large-scale embargo against British trade decreed by Napoleon and valid for Switzerland, too, the Zurich authorities in 1810 published a list of colonial goods which would be subject to this embargo. among them were: long-fibre cotton from Brazil, Guyana, Suriname and Demerara, cotton from the Levant imported across the sea and imported overland.

=> The Faesch family from Bâle held shares in plantations in Essequibo and Demerrara.

=> Charles-Marc-Louis de Mellet (1759–1811) from Vevey in the Canton of Berne/Vaud (W Switzerland) entered the military service of the Dutch in the Swiss Regiment May in 1780. In 1781, he became ensign in the regiment de Grenier-Wallons, which he left again in 1784. Until 1785, he was co-owner of the plantation Rotterdam (with 15,000 cotton trees) on the Caribbean coast west of the River Demarara. 1795, he was appointed by the governor commander of all the troops in Demerara and Essequibo and leader of the expedition against the revolting runaway slaves on the west bank of the Demerara River. At one point, the situation of the de Mellet expedition became so desperate that they decided to ask for help from Berbice and Suriname. During the counter-offensive, insurgents were mostly shot, woman and children taken prisoner. Resistance was finally broken and the trials began. 13 rebels were broken on the wheel, and the ringleader was burned at the stake while his flesh was pinched out with red-hot tongs. Major Louis de Mellet received a ten-year tax exemption and resigned from his position of again in October. After a stay in Switzerland and Holland, he embarked for Demerara again with the 4th Batallion of Light Infantry, whose lieutenant-colonel he was. He was made prisoner by the British fleet and detained in London until peace was signed in 1803. Back in Holland, he made a steep career in the army and in politics. His brother Jean-Samuel de Mellet (1766–1793) served the French in Saint-Domingue.

1.6.1  Berbice

=> Around 1760, the sugar plantation De Vreede in Berbice was managed by Jan Vincent Mittelholzer from Geneva (probably originally from the Appenzell area). The plantation belonged to (Hendrik) Christiaan Mittelholzer. One «C. Mittelholzer» is mentioned as taking part in the bloody fight against the rebellious slaves of 1763 («But Mittelholzer shouted No! No!, took his sabre and cut off the Negro’s hand.») In 1818, another plantation (St. Lust, 10000 acres) was partly in the hands of one Christoffel Mittelholzer of the company «van Helder en Mittelholzer». Maria Mittelholzer (1780–1830) was probably Christoffel’s sister. She married Willem Helder in 1802. Earlier on, mention is made of one Henrietta Elizabeth Caroline Mittelholzer. From the Mittelholzer family came the famous author Edgar Mittelholzer (1909–1965).

=> David Benjamin Bourgeois (1750-1809, aka «L’Américain») from Lausanne (Canton of Berne/Vaud) emigrated to Berbice in 1770. In 1791, his first child, Jeanne Marie, was born, out of wedlock. His mother was probably a black slave called Sara. In 1800, in the colony of Demerara, he begat another child, again with a black woman. That son was called Louis Henri Bourgeois (1800-1834), who, without his mother, followed his father back to Switzerland, where he first became a member of the cantonal legislature and then of the cantonal government.

=> Jan Frederik (Jean Frédéric) Colier (1711– after 1777) from Neuchâtel was the third governour of the Dutch colony of Berbice («Sociëteit van Berbice») 1749-1755. His was appointed at the age of 37, and his annual income as governor was 1500 guilders. In 1757, already out of office, he criticised the fact that most of the builders or owners of plantations did not come in person to select and cultivate the farmland, but left it to strange and incompetent people. Before his time in Berbice, he had apparently worked for the Dutch in Suriname for five years, and afterwards he was involved in the provisoning administration of the British Army.

=> Jean Huguenin (1685–1740) from Le Locle (Canton of Neuchâtel) moved to Holland with Swiss troops. His son Jean Roulof Huguenin (1731-1764) became ensign in the regiment Douglas, a military unit which had been sent to Berbice to suppress the slave rising of 1763. Lieutenant Colonel Robert Douglas was a Scotsman at the service of the Dutch army and the second in command in the expedition against the rebellious slaves. Huguenin died in Berbice and is buried in Fort Nassau.

=> Jean Pierre Galiffe (1767-1847) from a Geneva family of Huguenots (mother Naville, grandmother Thelluson) was First Lieutenant in a Swiss regiment at the service of the French, which belonged to Jacques-André, Marquis Lullin de Châteauvieux (1728 – 1816). Later he served in the Dutch and in the British army. He became captain the 60th Regiment and spent 10 years in the British colonies in the Americas. He took part in the «expedition» to Suriname in 1804. Towards the end of his career, he was military commander of Halifax (Nova Scotia), of the Bermudas (1821–1824), and then of Berbice (British Guyana), before returning to Geneva, where he entered politics.

=> In 1762, a «rehearsal» for the great Berbice Slave Rebellion of 1763 took place on plantation Goed Land en Goed Fortuin, which were owned by Laurens Kunckler, colonial councilman and militia captain. This was a period of starvation and disease, because Berbice had been in the grip of a major fever epidemic since the mid-1750s. To make matters worse, Dutch supply ships loaded arrived less often, as the Seven Years War (1757-63) disrupted Caribbean and transatlantic shipping. As a consequence, hungry slaves faced hard-driving planters and overseers who were set to reach their production quotas. On the first Saturday in July 1762 plantation owner Kunckler was headed to a meeting of the governing council of the colony. It functioned as the executive arm of the colony and its criminal court. Once Kunckler, the only European on the plantation, was gone, his slaves seized the opportunity. On Monday most of them failed to report for work. The rebels raided the plantation house and were able to seize weapons. They set off upriver with their canoes. The mastermind behind this small-scale rebellion was «bomba» Adam, Kunckler’s surrogate when absent. Only a handful of slaves refused to join Adam and his rebels, among them Kunkler’s enslaved mistress. Company soldiers, creole slaves and Amerindians were called in, and after a series of skirmishes, the rehearsal-rebellion was put down.Only two fugitives were caught alive: Coffij (one of the newly bought slaves from the ship Unity) in mid-August and, a month later, Antoinette. The court declared Antoinette innocent (she had been forced to come along). Coffij was sentenced to be tied «to a cross, to be broken alive from his feet up», his body and severed head displayed underneath the gallows «until the birds and air have consumed it». 

=> Plantation Helvetia had been owned or administered since 1737 and until after the Berbice Rebellion by members of the St.Gallen families Kunckler, RietmannSchlumpfHögger, and Scherer, as well as the French-Huguenot Dutchman René David de Gennes. On the large coffee and cotton plantation lived an enslaved woman called Charmante. On 26th February 1763, plantation overseer Johannes Meijer accused Charmante and another woman (of Amerindian origin) of trying to poison him. Meijer ordered his «bomba» (driver) Prins and two other slaves, Boeseroen and Coridon, to string the two women up and beat them. When Charmante warned that her fellow sufferer was close to death, the overseer ordered to stop the flogging. However, it was too late to save the indigenous woman’s life. The next day, colonial officials arrived to investigate the case, and the  report submitted to governor Van Hoogenheim stated that Meijer had violated an unwritten rule which forbade beating slaves around the head and neck. Van Hoogenheim probably never read that report, because the great Berbice Slave Rebellion broke out that very day, February 27th. On Helvetia, the plantation manager was killed returning from church.

=> In 1740, Thomas (Tobias) Ott (1703–1742) from a Schaffhausen family, son of Hans Georg (1685–1739) and Anna Barbara Holländer (1668-1747), was director of plantation «Slingeland» on Rio Berbice, situated close to other plantations with Swiss backgrounds («Helvetia», «Zubly Lust», «Hubersburg»). His brother Johann(Hans) Georg Ott (1709–1751) also lived in Berbice for some time and died in Copenhagen. A 1743 document in Amsterdam’s City Archive probably contains the details of the succession concerning plantation «Slingeland» among members of the Ott family in Schaffhausen: widow Anna Barbara, brother Johann Georg (1685–1739), brother Melchior (1691–1733), brother Christoffel (*1706), and nephew Johann Wilhelm (1725–1809).  

=> In 1763, the great Berbice Slave Rebellion shook the Dutch colony. In its dimension and (initial success) it is certainly comparable to the Haitian Revolution of 1791–1804, and it is still commemorated today in modern Guyana as a major anti-colonial struggle (23rd February as «Guayanese Republic Day», monument on the Square of the Revolution in Georgetown). The uprising was so well set up that, although the rebels› plans had been betrayed, the plantations between plantation Antonia and Peereboom joined in, either voluntarily, or after of the arrival of people like Coffy and Accarra from Lelienburg, Atta from Altenklingen and Cossael of Oosterleek. There are numerous Swiss links to the rebellion: 1) Laurens Kunckler on plantation Helveatia had hidden his silver and gold and given his furniture to Amerindians for safekeeping. 2) Some of the plantations involved in the rebellion had a Swiss context: Oosterleek (manager Christian Mittelholzer killed), Mon Repos and Roosenburgh (property of the Pool family), Altenklingen (managed in 1763 by Salomon Slater, probably from the St.Gallen family Schlatter), Essendam (property of Pool family, where the plantation manager was killed returning from church), De Peerebom (Ambrosius Zubli, organiser of the defence, arriving by boat together with Johann George, shot and beheaded by the rebels), Helvetia (slaves Fortuin and Prins as leaders of the rising, co-ownership of Leonard Sellon and Jean Jacques Hogguer), De Prosperiteit, Zion, and Rusthof (owner or manager Ambrosius Zubli, suicide of the overseer, places of origin of many witnesses questioned after the rebellion), and Zwitserland (property of widow Hosch). 3) Louis Henri de Fourgeod (1708-1779) from Bussigny-près-Lausanne (Canton of Berne/Vaud, W-Switzerland)then in the rank of a Dutch captain, took part in the campaign to suppress the rebellion. The Dutch governor van Hoogenheim noted that he hoped Colonel Fourgeoud would ensure «that I am not molested by his men in my own house». It is not clear whether the soldiers came to steal food or to rape the women, or both. 4) An account of the rebellion was published in Dutch, French and German newspapers in the form of a letter from Curaçao by Jan Abrahan Charbon (born after 1743) from a family from Treytorrens (Payerne, Canton of Berne/Vaud, W Switzerland), dated 12th May, 1763. In the letter, Charbon told the story of the rebellion, of fights against the former slaves, and of himself being caught  by the rebels. He reported how he was used as an intermediary between Coffy, the leader of the rebellion, who offered peace against a partition of the colony into an African South and a European North, and the Dutch governor of the colony, van Hoogenheim. Significantly, the French newspaper «Nouvelles extraordinaires de divers endroits» followed up the news item from Berbice with one from British North America, where the first attack of Pontiac’s Rebellion had taken place on Pennsylvania soil. Colonel William Clapham had been killed, but soldiers were being mobilised against the «savages». The Berbice Rebellion lasted from February 1763 to spring 1764, and the insurgents managed to keep control of the southern part of the colony for a year. Reinforcements arrived from Suriname, Barbados, Sint Eustatius, and from Holland (3 vessels carrying 1,100 volunteer soldiers), and in the spring of 1764, with the help of British and French troops, the rebellion was brutally suppressed. The Dutch questioned close to 900 people in 1764. Many witnesses came from plantations Helvetia, Zwitserland, Zublis Lust, Prosperiteit, God ziet alles, La Providence, Langendaal, Vigilante, Altenklingen, Rosendael, den Arend, and Essendam. 40 Europeans had been killed by the insurgents, over 1000 slaves lost their lives, every third plantation had been destroyed. In 1764, 80% of the enslaved population were back on their plantations.

=> In 1762, two years after her husband Paulus Zubli (1709–1760) had died, Cornelia Gertrud Verste(e)r (1733–1800) married Adriaan Gillissen (1716–1763) on plantation Zubli’s Lust. Adriaan Gillissen, owner of plantations Zubli’s Lust and Geertruid, was involved in the Berbice slave revolt, trying to organise the defence against the rebellious slaves and writing a controversial eye-witness account of it. He died on plantation Dageraad. In 1763, Landlord Caspar Tobias Zollikofer of Altenklingen, on behalf of his wife Elisabetha Zublin and of his sister-in-law Cornelia Gertrud Verste(e)rPaulus Zublin’s widow living in Rio Berbice, and by virtue of her authorisation of 22 April 1761, renounced all inheritance claims on the house at Brühlgasse St.Gallen, left by the father or the father-in-law respectively of the two women, in favour of Ambrosi Zublin (Jr.), brother or brother-in-law respectively of the said Elisabetha Zublin and Gertrud Verste(e)r.

=> Paulus Zubli jun (1756–1790) was a son of Paulus Zubli (1709–1760) and Cornelia Gertrud Verste(e)r (1733–1800). In 1790, he was registered as administrator and director of cotton, coffee, and cocoa plantation SchepmoedThis plantation was first mentioned in 1766, when the area was surveyed, but apparently established only later. It then belonged to widow Gillissen (Cornelia Gertrud Versteer had married again: Adriaan Gillissen, who had died 1763). In 1771, Schepmoed belonged to «J. Pool and Wed. Gillissen», with «Wed. Gillissen» registered as administrator and director. «J.Pool» (from a family from Bever in the Canton of Graubünden) were among the biggest plantation owners in Berbice. In 1785, Paulus Zubli jun. was still registered as director of Schepmoed. In 1790, when Paulus Zubli jun died on his voyage back to Europe, owners of Schepmoed were still «J. Pool and Wed. Gillissen», but Cornelia Gertrud Versteer-Zubli-Gillissen seems to have left the colony already in 1776, following her daughter Johanna Louisa and her son Abraham to Holland. After abolition, on 22nd January 1836, the Pool heirs were compensated £6437 7s 3d for the «loss» of their enslaved Schepmoed workforce of 124.   

=> Ambrosius Züblin (1725–1763), brother of Paulus Züblin (1709–1760), was born in St.Gallen and emigrated to Berbice, where he became director of plantations De ProsperiteitZion and Rusthof. He was killed in the Berbice Slave Rebellion, which started on plantation de Peereboom. On 8th October 1763, St.Gallen’s city council decided to ring the church bells in commemoration of Ambrosius Züblin’s death in Berbice. That Ambrosius‹ 9-year-old niece and goddaughter Johanna Louisa (1754–1796), daughter of Paulus Züblin and born on Züblis Lust, was killed in the slave rebellion, too, is probably a legend. Document show that she died in 1796 in Doesburg, Holland. In 1777, she and her brother Abraham Züblin renewed their St.Gallen citizenship. Johanna Magdalena Züblin (1750–1784), Johanna Louisa’s sister, was born on plantation Züblis Lust, too. She married Johannes Georg Zollikofer (1751–1809) from Bürglen in the Canton of Thurgau and died on the family castle of Altenklingen.

=> In August 1772, Emanuel Correvon(t) (died before 1798) from a Swiss family (either from Geneva or the Canton of Berne/Vaud) left for Berbice and was mentioned in a mortgage business with Jacobus Kinkeet and Jan Adam Charbon: He was in debt of 4,000 guilders. In the 1770s, Correvont became owner, director and administrator of plantations Ma Resource and Tout lui faut. His neighbour was now Louis-Berthélemy Petitmaître from Yverdon (Canton of Berne/Vaud). Correvont for a certain time also became director of plantations ProsperiteitZion, and Rusthoff. In 1792, he became administrator of a fourth plantation: Saints-Lust. In 1794, Correvont must have withdrawn from the plantation administration business. He was still mentioned as owner of Ma Resource and Tout lui faut, but administration of these two plantations had apparently been left to his swiss neighbour Petitmaître. Owners, directors and administrators of plantation Saint-Lust were now his «mulatto» children Louis Zamore van Wicky van Correvont (1778–1805) and Lisette Gabriëlle van Wicky van Correvont (1784?–1824). Correvont must have bought that plantation for his children. The mother’s name is not mentioned in the baptismal register. In 1802, Louis Zamore enrolled as a student of the Amsterdam Academy of Arts and took lessons with then famous wallpaper artist Jurriaan Andriessen (1742–1819), with whose family Louis was staying. Louis died in 1805. Plantation Saint-Lust figures in the inventory published after his death. Lizette now became the sole owner of Saint-Lust. Probably in 1808, the plantation (together with Cornelia Agnetha a surface of 1000 acres) was sold for fl 30,000 to Helder & MittelholzerHelder was married Maria Mittelholzer, probably Christoffel Mittelholzer’s sister. So, the plantation stayed in «Swiss» hands. In 1819, there were only 20 slaves left on the plantation, which no longer existed in 1835, when no longer existed in 1835, when the British paid out compensations for the loss of the slave workforce.

=> Jakob Stäheli (1727-1761) from St.Gallen (E Switzerland) was a slave-overseer in Berbice. When he died – probably from a disease that killed many Europeans at that time – he was manager/director of plantations Zubli LustHubertsburg and La Charité.

=> Andreas Grimm (1709-1744) from Burgdorf (Canton of Berne) was a medical doctor who left Switzerland for Holland in 1731. From there he travelled to Berbice, where in 1736 he was a candidate for the «Raad van Politie en Justitie». Other candidates were the Swiss O. Chaille(t) (probably from Neuchâtel) and J.L. Sellon from St.Gallen. In 1741, Grimm was made manager of plantations Maria (500 acres) and Agnes (500 acres), which were often mentioned as one plantation under the name of Maria Agnes. He owned a town house in Fort Nassau, the hamlet which was Berbice’s capital.

=> Johannes Feer (1716–1756) from Brugg in the Canton of Berne/Aargau signed a contract with the Sociëteit van Berbice in 1742 to work as «Chirurgyn Major» in Fort Nassau. He set sail for Berbice and took up his job in the same year. In 1748 he volunteered for membership on the orphanage board. apparently, he did not fulfill his employment of surgeon to the satisfaction of the authorities and was dismissed. He then became owner of the plantations De Goede Hoop und Charlottenburg on the Canje River. In the great slave rising of 1763/64, a «Mulat Daniel Feer» was reported a swimming away from his arrest in the Canje River. This must have been a son of Johannes Feer’s, who died of malaria. Johannes Feer had designated as sole heir of his property one Elisabeth Stanger, wife of of his brother living in Berne.

=> In 1746, one Pieter Davidt from Basel was a soldier in Berbice.

=> Isaac du Thon (born 1709) from an Yverdon family (Canton of Berne/Vaud) was director of the Dutch Berbice company.

=> In 1771, Conrad Schläpfer, member of the municipal authorities of Trogen (Canton of Appenzell Ausserrhoden, NE Switzerland) published a report on Berbice in the annual «Appenzeller Calender», a colony which he had visited in 1769/1770. He described Berbice as a place where many plantations were inhabited by Swiss and German immigrants. To plant coffee and cotton, he went on, «negroes or slaves are used, they are wild black folks taken from Africa and bought there, a male costs 150 to 500 guilders, they are better adapted for work than the original inhabitants, they go about naked, except for their pubic area, their toes and eyes are white, their hair short and black like the wool of sheep.»

=> In 1767, one H. Werndli from Zurich, employed as a surgeon in Berbice, made a gift of plants and seeds to the Zurich Botanical Gardens. In 1773, he sent the Zurich Naturalist Society a collection of reptiles (e.g. the embryo of an armadillo preserved in alcohol) and of «American snakes».

=> In 1748, Jacob de Sollicofre is mentioned as «Edele Heer Raad van Justitie», i.e. part of the administration of the colony.

=> One Anton Zollikofer (1720–1761), son of Georg Leonard Zollikofer (1693–1779) from the Canton of Thurgau, was captain lieutenant of the grenadiers in Berbice, where he died. He was married to Johanna Barbara Wetter (1725–1754) from Herisau AR, who was the niece of large-scale indiennes entrepreneur Johann Rudolf Wetter (1705–1767) in Marseille and Orange. Anton’s brother Adriaan (1738–1765) died in Berbice, too. He became a plantation owner and was one of the three judges at the trial of the Berbice Rebels of 1763/64. His daughter Maria Elisabetha (born 1744) married Christoph Mittelholzer, the Mittelholzers being a family of Berbice plantation owners of Swiss origin.

=> At the beginning of the 18th century, Pierre Antoine Charbon (died 1762) from Treytorrens (Payerne, Canton of Berne/Vaud, W Switzerland) emigrated to Holland, where he appeared in Amsterdam in 1736. In 1742, his son Maurits Hendrik was born. In 1743, he signed six-year contract as director of plantation La Ressource in Berbice. This was a 1000-acre plantation first registered in 1733, but surveyed and put into operation as late as 1740. Charbon’s employer, the Testas family, paid for the transfer from Holland to Berbice, where he arrived with his wife Susanna Spack and his children Maurits Hendrik and Jan Adam in 1743. La Ressource was to be sold in 1744, and was then taken over by the «Sociëteit van Berbice» in whose area (plantations Peerebom and Cornelia Jacoba) it was situated. In 1746, Charbon signed a six-year contract as director of the two 500 acre plantations St. Elisabeth und Alexandria. His annual salary was 500 guilders and 8% of all plantation products delivered to Holland. In 1751, his contract was extended until 1757, but he left his post before that date. at an unknown date, Charbon also became director of plantations Oosterleek und Pieterslust. He died on Oosterleek in 1762 of a disease (probably dysentery) that killed many Europeans around that time. Emanuel Hosch (from a Basel family) died, too, and Berbice governor van Hoogenheim wrote to the board of the «Sociëteit van Berbice» in Amsterdam that after the death of councillors Hosch and Charbon, the «Raad van Politie» could no longer meet because it had sunk below the necessary quorum of members.  

=> Jan Adam Charbon (before 1736–1798) took over from his father. He first formed the company Jan Adam Charbon, and later was a partner in Wils & Charbon, Jan Wils & Zoon, Pool & Wils, and Charbon & Zoon (which lasted for three generations). In 1750, he signed a contract (with the consent of his father Pierre Antoine) with Pierre Testas of «Testas & Zonen» over a seven-year apprenticeship. The Testas family in Amsterdam was active in overseas trade, banking, plantation ownership, and invested in the British «South Sea Company». They were in close contact with the directors of the French «Compagnie des Indes» and with the Nantes-based company «Walsh & Shiell», which made a fortune in the slave trade from the Bight of Benin to Saint Domingue. The company Jan Adam Charbon and Jan Wils & Zoon later bought plantations St. Elisabeth und Alexandria, and in 1826 the company «Charbon & Zoon» bought the coffee plantation Crappahoek (1000 acres) on the Nickerie River, which was still in the hands of the Charbon family in 1860. The company also owned the coffee plantation Nieuwe Aanleg (1500 acres) on the Nickerie River and more plantations in Suriname and Berbice (coffee plantations De Standvastigheid and Op Hoop van Beter, plantations De Standvastigheid, De Vrouw Johanna, Ruijmzicht, and Bestendigheid). Jan Adam Charbon’s son Pierre Elie Charbon (1762–1818) became involved in Charbon & Zoon. With Maria Geertruy Carbrijn, Peter Elie had three children who reached maturity: Jeannette Gertrude Charbon, who in 1816 married Theodorus Carel Lodewijk Sluyterman with connections to Demerrara; Jean Adam Charbon (1793–1877), and Pieter Anthony Charbon (1800–1864), who participated in «Charbon & Zoon» and founded the shipping insurance company «Tweede Nederlandse Zee-Assurantie Maatschappij».

=> In December 1822, the vessel «Pieter Anthony» set sail from the island of Texel in Holland. It belonged to a Partenrederij under the management of Charbon & Zoon, it was bound for Berbice, and it was shipwrecked on a sandbank in a storm. Among its cargo was found a cast-iron kap, a boiling kettle such as they were used in the boiler house of a sugar plantation to thicken sugar-cane juice of various consistencies. Its dimensions were impressive: diameter 150 cm, height 78 cm, so it easily held 1000 litres. There had been two kettles on board, but one was found broken.

=> Several members of the Straub family from St.Gallen were registered in Berbice. One Michael Straub(1730–1758) from a St.Gallen family (with relatives among the RietmannHögger and Kunkler families) was born and died in Berbice. Johann Ulrich Straub (1746–1785) from a St.Gallen family was a merchant and born in St.Gallen. He must have been in Berbice already before 1771, and in 1776, he married Cornelia Johanna Mennes, who was born in the Netherlands and died in 1788 in Berbice. Also in 1776, mortgages for the two plantations were registered as having been granted to the couple by one Johannes Aegidius in Amsterdam. Johann Ulrich Straub‏‎ was the owner, administrator, and director of plantations Overijssel (also called De 3 Gezusters) and De Vriendschap certainly since 1771. In 1781, the two plantations were looted. Johann Ulrich Straub died in 1785 in Gais, Canton of Appenzell. In 1785, he and his wife were mentioned in a mortgage business concerning De Vriendschap and De Drie Gezusters, and most probably Cornelia Johanna Mennes continued administration of the two plantations until her death. A 1785 map mentioned as owner of the two plantations Louis-Berthélemy Petitmaître from Yverdon, founder of the plantation Lausanne, who is mentioned again in that context in 1790 and 1794. In 1771, plantations Roosendaal andVreedenburg had been registered as having as director one «Urb. Straub». The «Amsterdamse Courant» of 1780 mentioned the death of one Johann Straub in Berbice. As late as 1802, one Johann Ulrich Straub was mentioned as the owner of the 1000-acre plantation De Johanna.

=> On his death in Namur in 1760, Michael Schläpfer from Speicher (Canton of Appenzell Ausserrhoden, E Switzerland), son of Captain Hans Schläpfer, captain-lieutenant in the Dutch army, left to his five heirs two plantations in Berbice worth 9000 guilders. Master carpenter Johannes Klee from Bühler (Canton of Appenzell Ausserrhoden), Konrad Schläpfer, and his son Andreas Schläpfer administered the plantations Oberberg and Flachtal. In 1771, Andreas Schläpfer died and his father returned to Switzerland. In 1779, Johannes Klee returned, too, to his home village of Bühler (AR). In 1781, the plantation, which had fallen into decay because of the British invasion of Berbice, was sold. Johannes Klee was later responsible for the building of the following houses in Speicher (AR): «Reutenenstrasse 2», «Haus Blume», «Adler» and «Hauptstrasse 16».

=> In 1762, Berbice plantation Le Resource was renamed Wallisland (or merged with Le Resource under a new name). It was registered as belonging to one Laurens Felix Mercier, who also owned close-by plantation Nieuwenhagen. Both were located on Wieronje Creek. The owner of Le Resource was Jean Testas, who had close relations with the Swiss Charbon family. Whether the name Wallisland has anything to to do with the Swiss Canton of Wallis (German for Valais) and whether Laurens Felix Mercier had a Swiss background, remains to be established. A Mercier family is documented as having left France for Lausanne for religious reasons in 1740 and having established a prosperous tannery there. In 1771, both plantations were registered with Laurens Felix Mercier as owner, administrator and director. In 1781, Mercier had disappeared and been replaced by one J.J. Swaving.

=> Paulus Züblin (1709–1760), grandson of the mayor of St.Gallen (E Switzerland), emigrated via Holland to Berbice. On 16 January 1735, Nicolaas Huber (possibly from Walenstadt in the Canton of St.Gallen) and Paulus Zublin each applied to the «Sociëteit van Berbice» for a 500 acres plantation with six slaves. On 24th  Januar 1736, Huber und Züblin were granted the land, and Huber insisted on paying cash for his six slaves. On 11the April 1736, Nicolass Huber und Paulus Zubly  demand that the administrative council of the «Sociëteit van Berbice» adapt the allotment to two plantation each with three slaves each. The council agreed, and Züblin was allotted land for the plantation Zubli’s Lust, which, together with plantation Hubersburg, was surveyed in 1740. Those two plantations belonged with one half each to Paulus Züblin and Nicolaas Huber, who lived in Amsterdan. Züblin was manager of the two plantations, and in 1743, he manumitted his slave Nicolaas, son of his slave woman Anna. In 1747, he became «Edele Heer Raad van de Politie», i.e. part of the colonial administration, and in 1749, he married Cornelia Gertrud Verste(e)r (1733–1800, then 16 years old). He lived in New Amsterdam and was administrator of the sugar plantation de Herstelling (2000 acres), probably the biggest Berbice plantation at the time. Were also born and baptised in Berbice: Ambrosius Justus (1751–1820, died in Holland), Johanna Louisa (1754–1796, died in Holland), Paulus (1756–1790, died in Berbice), Abraham (born 1760) and a child who died unnamed in infancy.

• In the 1780s, Vincent Conrad (1745-1792) from the Canton of Grisons (SE Switzerland) arrived in Berbice in the middle of the 1770s. He married Helena Johanna Versfelt in 1776. He first worked as plantation manager of ’s Gravenhage, then also became manager of de Bestendigheid. Later, he was an administrator on the coffee plantation Mara en Germania, which belonged to J.V. Pool, and owned 10 adult slaves. He was also, together with one J.A. Schläpfer,  a member of the administrators› team of Middelburgs Welvaaren and introduced Johann Conrad Winz to plantation administration.  Together with Claas Nicolay (1748–1799), also from Graubünden, Conrad founded the plantations Grauwbunderland and Grondzorg doch met Vergenoegen. 2/3 of the two plantations belonged to Claas Nicolay, 1/3 to Vincent Conrad. Conrad died in 1792 on plantation La Prospérité, whose manager he had been. Nicolay had been mentioned for the first time in 1781 as administrator and manager of plantation Cruysburg. He became co-administrator and manager of plantation De Waakzaamheyd, and he served as deacon of the Dutch Calvinist colonial church. In 1818, the British «Slave Returns» documented for the two plantations Grauwbunderland and Grondzorg doch met Vergenoegen 66 slaves (18 male slaves between ages 12 and 65 fit for work, 28 female slaves between ages 7 and 55 fit for work, 4 slaves unfit for work, 16 slave children; 30 of these were born in Africa, 36 in Berbice). His heir appears to have been one Frederic(k) Nic(h)olay, who owned 27 slaves in 1822. In 1827, he is registered as having purchased slave Francina Frederick from Cruysburg plantation for 500 florin for manumission. Francina had been registered as one of Frerick Nicolay’s slaves already in 1822, and he had probably had a sexual relationship with her. She is noted as a «caboeger» (¾ black / ¼ white). In 1835, he was compensated by Britain for the loss of his «property» (12 slaves) with £ 585 4s 3d.

• In 1781, Louis-Berthélemy Petitmaître from Yverdon (Canton of Berne/Vaud) is mentioned as owner, administrator and manager of plantation Ma Retraite, which was the product of a merger between plantations Zubli’s Lust and Hubertsburg. Petitmaître was also administrator of Prosperiteit, Zion and Rusthoff. In 1790, he is mentioned as owner and administrator of plantation Sara Jacoba (formerly Schermers or Schirmers Lust) and owner, administrator and manager of the large sugar plantation De Vriendschap. In 1794, he is recorded only as owner, administrator and manager of De Vriendschap. In 1796, he is granted the plantations Maria Helena and Lausanne, according to documents, but his death is recorded in 1795, on plantation De Vriendschap.

Johann Konrad Winz (1757–1828) from Stein am Rhein (Canton of Schaffhausen, N Switzerland) was banished to Berbice for revolutionary activities in 1785. There he lived on plantation Schepmoed and was introduced to managing a plantation by Paulus Zublin jun. (1756–1790) from a St.Gallen family and by Vinzent Conrad. Plans for a plantation of his own did not materialise, but then he was able to take over the directorship of the coffee plantation Middleburgs Welvaren (80 slaves, 60,000 coffee trees), whose director Schläpfer from Appenzell Ausserrhoden (E Switzerland) wanted to return home. In 1794, Winz was administrator and manager of plantation Utile & Faisible, which belonged to one Lambert Blair, one of the richest plantation and slave owners of the colony. Winz also speculated in cattle, wine, and slaves. He also served as a church administrator of the Dutch Calvinist colonial church. In 1800, Winz returned to Switzerland a rich man and entered local politics. He married Maria Magdalena von Waldkirch (1782-1852), whose brothers Franz and Johann Conrad were plantation owners in Surinam. The house «Zum Grüt», which he bought in Schaffhausen, belonged to Laurenz Ziegler (1772-1807), who lived in Surinam at the time of the purchase. The road on which Winz had his mansion «Villa Berbice» built is still called «Berbiceweg» (Neuhausen am Rheinfall, Canton of Schaffhausen). In Berbice, he seems to have left a (coloured?) slaveholding branch of his family: In 1819, one Liseatta Wintz is registered with six, one Joseph Wintz with two slaves, in 1822 one Jacob Wintz with two and one Jannet Wintz with nine slaves.

• The following members of the patrician Zollikofer (Sollicoffre) family from St.Gallen are mentioned as plantation managers or directors in Berbice. On 12th December 1735, in a meeting of the administrative council of the «Sociëteit van Berbice», Robert Sollicoffre († ca. 1757) applied for 500 acres and 6 slaves from among the next «delivery». On 27th December 1735, he appeared again before the council announcing his withdrawal from the plantation application and asking for it to be transferred to Jacob Boulé, whose director he later became. Robert Sollicoffre managed Engelenburg (granted 1735, surveyed 1739) and Altenklingen (1735, belonging to Jacob Boulé). Later managers of Engelenburg included Germain Sollicoffre (1748) and Jacob de Sollicoffre (1765). Ida en Sabina (also owned by Jacob Boulé) was also managed by Jacob Sollikoffer in 1765. Magdalenenburgh, Amsterdam, and Fransenburgh (owned by Abraham Vernesobre) were all managed in 1735 by Georgie Sollicoffer, who had been allotted 500 acres and three slaves the same year, but who never figuresd as a plantation owner. Roeboth (owned by Pieter Massé ) was managed by Hans Solicoffre in 1767 und 1771. De Nieuwe Vigilantie (belonging to the heirs Hartsinck and A. Frenzel) was managed by J. F. S. de Solicoffre in 1790, 1792, and 1794. De Eenzaamheid (owned by the heirs of Jan Broer) was managed in 1790 by H. F. S. Sollicoffer and de Eendragt boven (owned by Jan Slayeman) was managed by S. F. S. Sollicoffre in 1781. It is possible that the last three are one and the same person made into three persons by difficulties in transcribing handwritten documents.

• Laurens Kunckler (1716–after 1763) came from a prominent St.Gallen family and was probably the son of Ursula Zollikofer von Altenklingen ( 1680–1743) and Laurenz Kunkler (1688–1756). He left Holland for Berbice aboard the «Christina Johannes» in 1737, but was shipwrecked off the Isle of Wight. He then sailed to Berbice aboard the «Izabella Maria» in 1737, where he got a job on plantation Helvetia, which belonged to a group of St.Gallen businessmen around Jean-Barthélémy Rietmann. In 1748, he owned and directed plantation De dertien Cantons, (the Thirteen Cantons, the number of member states making up the Swiss Confederation 1513–1798) together with Leonard Sellon/Schlumpf, co-owner of Helvetia. Later, Kunckler, who was also captain of the local militia and a member of the colonial administration, concentrated on his plantation Goed Land en Goed Fortuyn (originally the two plantations Nimwegen and Realmont) as owner and manager. These plantations were registered in 1762 with 5 indigenous women for house work and 23 black slaves. Kunckler had a black concubine. In 1762, together with Willem Nicolas Schoock, and Emanuel Hosch, he bought slaves from the ship «De Eenigheid» at an auction or acted as surety: No 9, a woman, ƒ 280:0, to Kunckler, guarantors: Schook Stubbeman; No 24, a man, ƒ 295:0, to Kunckler, guarantors: Schook & Stubbeman; No 12, a woman and child, ƒ 265:0, to Hosch; No 55, a girl, ƒ 165:0, to Hosch; No 63, a boy, ƒ 120:0, to Hosch; No 4, girl, ƒ 150:0, to Hendrik Meijer, guarantors: Hosch & Maisoneuve; No 7, a boy, ƒ 225:0, toKöhler, guarantors: Hosch & Bocht; No 15, a man, ƒ 355:0, to Schook q.q., guarantors: Hosch & & Sollicoffre; No 16, a woman, ƒ 205:0, to idem, guarantors: idem & idem; No 22, a boy, ƒ 165:0, to Dell, guarantors: Hosch & van Staeden; No 28, a boy, ƒ 125:0, to Meijers, guarantors: Hosch & Sollicoffre; No 52, a man, ƒ 210:0, to Adriaan d’Sollicoffre, guarantors: Hosch & Kohler; No 53, a woman, ƒ 210:0, to Mittelholtzer, guarantors: Hosch & Gelskerke. The same year, slaves on Kunckler’s plantations rose in rebellion. Kunckler then held the offices of captain (i.e. the supreme commander of the local militia in the upper part of the colony) and «Raad van Politie en Criminele Justitie». The rebellion started on 5th July 1762, but Kunckler had left his plantation aboard the «Tentboat» (rowed by slaves) two days before in order to join a council meeting in Fort Nassau, 90 km downstream. The rebellion, which was a prelude to the great rising of 1763, was put down with great brutality. Rebel leader Coffij was executed by tying him to a cross and breaking his bones with iron bars. We have now news of what happened to Kunckler after the rebellion. He might have died of a disease that was rampant in the colony, or he might have returned to Europe.

=> Jakob Pool (1700-1771) from Bever (Canton of Grisons, SE Switzerland) took over from his father the flourishing family business in Amsterdam, which had already expanded to the Dutch West Indies in 1710. The company «Westrik & Pool» and members of the Swiss Pool family (Ambrosius, Ambrosius Johannes, Anna Louisa, Jacob Ambrosius, Jan Jacob, Jan Vintzenz, Jan, Louis, Pieter) owned shares in the following plantations on the Berbice River: Engadina (from 1741) Essendam and Sans Souci (150,000 guilders), Julianenburg, Maria Germania (coffee), Middelburgs Welvaren (coffee), Schepmoed (coffee), Zandvoort (coffee), Bellevue (coffee), Sophia (coffee), L’Esperance (sugar), De Grond Engelenburg, De Vrwyheyd, De Grond Ida Sabina, and Mon ReposJan Vintzent Pool held shares in the colonial company Societeit van Berbice. In 1768, 1772, and 1780, «Jacob Ambrosius Pool et Compagnie» in Amsterdam received credits from the Zurich-based bank Leu. Jakob Pool left a fortune of over 240,000 guilders. Practically his whole wealth ended up in the Engadin: a considerable part went to the von Planta family in Samedan, another part to Melchior von Muralt from Zurich (1792-1834), who had married Maria Pool (1788–1863). Their daughters brought the Bever estates into the hands of the Salis-Soglio and von Planta-Reichenau families. The wealth of the Pool, Orlandi and Zamboni families resulted in Bever, the second smallest municipality of the Upper Engadin, becoming the richest community in the whole Engadin before the French Revolution. The company «Westrik & Pool» seems to have been in existence until 1828. The last plantations remained in Pool hands until the abolition of slavery in 1833/34, whereupon they received from the Dutch state £6,437 7s 3d for the 124 slaves of Schepmoed and £8,540 7s 6d for the 160 slaves of Mara and Germania.

=> David Amstein from St.Gallen was granted the 500 acre-plantation Roosenburg (Roozenburgh, Rosenburg) on the River Berbice, divided by the Kimbia Creek, in 1736. It was surveyed in 1738 and its ownership recognized. Amstein lived on the plantation. In 1758, it passed into the hands of the Pool family from Bever (Grisons). In 1738, the neighbouring plantation Mon Repos was granted to a member of a Neuchâtel family, Olivie(r) Chaillé(t), who lived on it. It was surveyed in 1742 and its ownership recognized. The Pool family bought it in 1768, and treated the two plantations as one unit, with one administrator-director

=> In 1743, 1752 and 1755, a document of authorisation was issued  for Jean (Louis) Herrenschwand (possibly from the Canton of Berne) in Berbice, which gave him the right to work as director on several plantations.

=>  In 1770, on the lower Canje River in Berbice, there was a 500 acres plantation called Canton Berne. It belonged to Emanuel Buess, possibly from Aarau in the Canton of Berne. In 1771, the plantation is recorded as belonging to his widowed wife.

=> Théophile Cazenove (1708-1760) from a Geneva family of Huguenot immigrants resident in Geneva since 1686. His father Pierre Cazenove  (1670–1733) was a merchant and a banker, whose network established with his three sons Jean, David (1711–1782)and Théophile extended as far as Amsterdam, London, and Nantes. Théophile went to Amsterdam as a young man and became a merchant who traded with Bordeaux, Saint Petersburg, Archangelsk, Stockholm, and the West Indies. In 1735, Théophile Cazenove was granted 500 acres plus 6 slaves, in 1736 500 acres plus 6 slaves again. Later he owned the following plantations on the River Canje in Berbice: Toijras / Thoyras /Toyras (500 acres, from 1741 on), Don Carlos (500 acres, from 1740 on), Nova Caza / Nova Cassa (500 acres, from 1740 on), and Oloron / Oleron (500 acres, from 1742 on, its director was murdered in 1763). In Amsterdam in 1762, Charles and Théophile Cazenove issued a document of power of attorney to P. A. Charbon and Emanuel Hosch, both resident in Berbice. In 1764, Marie Cazenove (born 1742), daughter of David Cazenove, married Jacques Antoine Odier (1737–1815)  (1737–1815) from a Geneva family of bankers. Their son Jacques Antoine Odier (1766–1853) married into the Boué family from Hamburg (sugar import from the French Caribbean; import of coffee, cotton and indigo, investment and insurance, ship-building for the «Compagnie de l’Inde», which was active in the Atlantic and Asian slave-trade) and entered the indiennes textile business in 1789 by associating him with the royal works at Wesserling .

=> Gudains Planta (c 1712) and Elias Tratschin († 1732) from Samedan (Canton of Grisons, SE Switzerland) are recorded as having died «in las Indias», probably in the same area as the Pool plantation empire in Berbice.

=> In 1741, Johann Ulrich Koch from Zurich is registered as a soldier in Berbice. He arrived there on the ship «De Dageraad».

=> From 1732 on, private individuals could apply for plantations in Berbice. In 1733, banker Jan-Barthélémy Rietmann from St.Gallen (E Switzerland) applied for 1500 acres for Jan Leonard Sellon (Schlumpf), also from St.Gallen. They were granted the land plus 9 slaves, and in 1734 another 21 slaves. In 1735, Jan Leonard Sellon became a member of the council. The same year the following slave «deliveries» were registered: 3 times 9 slaves to Jan-Barthélémy Rietman (prices: fl. 2,475, fl. 2,259 , fl. 2,475), 6 slaves to Jacques Sellon (fl. 1,650), and  33 slaves to Jan Leonard Sellon (fl. 8,859). These slaves were needed for clearing the forest for the plantation. In a meeting of the administrative council of the «Sociëteit van Berbice» on 16th January 1736, David Hogguer and David Amsteyn (Amstein) from a St.Gallen family related to the Hogguers, Rietmanns and the Sellon(f)s were allotted 500 acres and six slaves each, but Hogguer never seems to have made use of his land grant. In 1736, Jan Leonard Sellon was appointed Council of Policy and Justice for the colony. In 1736, Jan Bartholomeus Rietmann, René David de Gennes and Jacob Sellon ask for «eenige lappies land bij hunne plantage», which is  granted to them. In 1737, coffee and cotton plantation Helvetia (Helvecia or Hellevesia) was surveyed and was registered as belonging to Jan Bartholomeus Rietman, René David de Gennes, Jacob Sellon and Jan Leonard Sellon, Amsterdam. Its manager was Leonard Sellon. In 1740, Salomé Rietmann, sister of Jan-Barthélémy Rietmann and wife of Daniel Hogguer (de Bignan), who was to be co-owner of the enlarged plantation Helvetia, sold or left her share to the Sellon brothers. In 1744, 292 acres were added to the plantation, whose owners were now Rene David de Gennes, Jacob Sellon, Hogguer de Bignan, and Scherer, Amsterdam. Jan Leonard Sellon also owned plantation God ziet alles (500 acres) from about 1742–1762In 1765, the owners of Helvetia  were the heirs of de Gennes, Jan Leonard Sellon, and Jean Jacques Hogguer de Bignan. In 1802 it was recorded as having 1792 acres and 128 slaves. Paul Iwan Hogguer (1760–1816) was a businessman and banker in Holland. He was mayor of Amsterdam and became the first director of «De Nederlandsche Bank» (DNB), whose role in slavery and the slave-trade is now being looked into.

=> In 1779, a Berbice plantation called De dertien Cantons («The Thirteen Cantons» was a name for the Swiss Confederation 1513–1798) was mentioned. According to the land title of plantation Henevliet, plantation De dertien Cantons must already have existed in 1741. In 1748, the owners were identified as L. Zellon and  L.(aurenz) Kunckler, who was also the manager.

=> In 1762, the partners or the company «Hosch & Zollikofer» granted the price of a male slave (No. 15, 355 guilder), a female slave (No. 16, 205 guilder) and of a slave boy (No. 28, 125 guilder) in an auction in Berbice. Emmanuel Hosch  probably came from Basel family. During the slave rising, the prevailing disease (probably dysentery) raged worse than ever before and  in the same year claimed the lives of two of the council members Emmanuel Hosch and Charbon and several directors of the societal plantation. Hosch’s widowed wife and her three daughters were spared (just as was one of Mr. Mittelholzer’s nieces and her son). But they had to work, half naked, for the rebels in their vegetable garden. In 1762 was issued in Amsterdam a document of power of attorney by Jan Adam Charbon to Emanuel Hosch and Johannes Mittelholzer in Berbice.

=> In 1780, an Amsterdam document established a guardianship by Jan Adam Charbon (before 1736–1798) over Frederica Henrietta Rosenberger (b. 1770) from a family from Bilten in the Canton of Glarus. The Charbons were a family of plantation owners in Berbice and Suriname, orginally from Treytorrens (Payerne, Canton of Berne/Vaud, W Switzerland). Frederica was to stay in the Netherlands and Jan Adam Charbon to receive powers of attorney over all Rosenberger businesses. Co-signatory of the document was Jan Adam’s son Pieter Elias Charbon (1762–1818). Frederica Henrietta Rosenberger’s mother was Anna Margaretha Schlösser, who was married to Martinus Rosenberger, lately arrived in Amsterdam from Berbice and planning to move to the Canton of Glarus permanently. Rosenberger was registered as former «weesmeester» of Berbice. According to a 1773 work contract, Martinus Rosenberger was director/manager of plantation La Providence on the Canje River.

=> In 1737, one Henry Grivel from Bournens in the Canton of Berne/Vaud got married to Constantia Apia. In 1739 he was mentioned in a legal affair concerning an inheritance. In 1740, he owned the 500 acres plantation Switzerland (Zwitserland, Zwitzerland, also called Grivelle). The land was surveyed and the ownership recognised. Later ownership passed to Emmanuel Hosch, originally from Basel. In 1752 there was a slave rising on plantation Switzerland. In 1767, the plantation was registered as in the hands of the heirs of Emmanuel Hosch. They wanted to sell the plantation in 1786 with «alle deszelft Bepootingen, Beplan-Tingen, Huysingen, Opstallen, Thuynen, Slaaven en Slaavinnen, en verdere Ap- en Dependentien van dien» (all plants, buildings, gardens, male and female slaves and their descendants), belonging to the heirs of Emanuel Hosch and Sara Jeuning.

=> In 1760, one Jean Etienne Fizeaux decreed who should administer his plantation on the Canje River should anything happen to him. Third in line was Adriaan (Adrien) de Sollicoffre (1738–1765), who might have been administrator of one of Fizeaux’s plantations. In 1762, Adriaan de Sollicoffre sent two letters of exchange for slaves sold privately in Rio Berbice and Rio Essequibo, addressed to the honourable lord directors of the «Commercie Compagnie in Middelburg Zeeland», the most important Dutch slave-trading company, which had armed the slave-ship «Enigheid». One was to be paid to Dirk Kraaij and satisfied by H. Hooft in Amsterdam (83 guilders), one to Hendrik Jansen Buse and satisfied by Jean Etienne Fizeaux in Amsterdam (121 guilders). The «Enigheid» started its voyage in Zeeland (Holland) in 1761, purchased slaves in Cape Lahou, on the Windward Coast, and on the Gold Coast, and began the Middle Passage with 319 slaves, out of which 298 survived. Slaves were disembarked in Berbice and Essequibo. In 1763, Adriaan d’Sollicoffre was granted a plantation of 500 acres on the Canje River, which had belonged to Johannes Feer until his death. In 1763/64, Adriaan d’Sollicoffre was one of the three judges at the trial of the Berbice Rebels.120 male and 4 female slaves were sentenced to death. 32 verdicts were passed the first day and carried out the next day. 18 of the enslaved were hanged, 8 (among them a woman) were broken on the wheel, 6 were burnt at the stake, five of them on a small fire, to prolong the suffering. After the final round of executions on 15th December 1764, Dutch governor Wolfert Simon van Hoogenheim (1730–1794) granted a general amnesty. He did so at the request of the «Societeit van Berbice», who were shocked – not at the brutality with which the rebellion had been put down but at the destruction of capital, i.e. of the enslaved workforce.

=> In 1818–1822, the «Former British Colonial Dependencies, Slave Registers» contain three slave-holding members of the Swiss Sollicoffre family, originally from St.Gallen/Thurgau: D. Sollicoffre (8 slaves in 1818, 5 in 1819, none in 1822), J. Sollicoffre (18 slaves in 1818, 11 in 1819, none in 1822) and the the «free black woman Mietje Sollicoffre» (7 slaves). Some male slave names were Bonaparten, Bonaparte, Simon, Welkam, David, Aberham, France, some female slave names: Juno, Elisabeth, Antje, La Rose, Dorothea, Vesta, Alida, Augusta.

=> In the 1763 slave rebellion, the insurgents occupied most of Berbice for ten months. Plantations were destroyed, houses burned and sugar mills deactivated. From plantation Lelienburg, Cuffy and his people attacked the plantations Juliana (Vlissingen), Mon Repos, Essendam, St. Elizabeth, Alexandra and Altenklingen.

1.6.2  Demerara (Demerrara, Demerary)

=> In Demerara, there was a plantation called Geneve on Canal Nr. 1. In 1785, it was a coffee plantation of 250 acres and the property of Swiss called Jourdan, who also owned another plantation (unnamed, Nr. 8) of 250 acres on Canal Nr. 1 North. In 1792, that plantation was still unnamed, but in 1795 it appeared under the name of Basel. Jourdan could have been Jean Philippe Jourdan, who married Margaretha van Dijk in 1781 in Demerary and died 1806 in Paris. In 1812, the plantation Geneve is still mentioned. Geneve had been managed by Robert Ferrier (died 1806, probably English) as a joint plantation Vree-and-Hoop and Geneva. A tax register of 1818 shows that there must have been 337 slaves there. In 1777, the registers of the Durch West Indien Company (WIC) also mention one Jean Pierre Jourdan from Geneva, a medical doctor.  

=> («General») Louis de Saulles (1767-1817) came from a Huguenot family who fled from France to Switzerland. He served with General Lafayette during the American Revolution. In 1806, he was appointed at the City of New York as an «Inspector at Demerara». He was a shopkeeper there, and established an «Academy».  In 1807, he sold three slaves, and in 1808, he paid the colonial tax for his three slaves. In his obituary, it was said that he was born in Switzerland. He died at Mahaica.

=> There are further traces of possibly Swiss plantation ownership in the region: On the eastern banks of the Mahaica River the «Kaart van de rivier en zeekusten van Demerary» (1792) shows a cotton plantation of 175 acres called Berne. Its owner John Tappin also owned half of Plantation 31 (250 acres, cotton) and plantation Beter Hoop. Two plantation owners called Fresen and Jean Cuche are noted as «Swiss or French». Jean Pierre Cuche (born 1768, died before 1807) from La Tour-de-Peilz (Canton of Berne/Vaud) was made ensign of the local militia in 1789, and he owned the plantation L’Inattendu on the Demerara sea coast between Maicouny Creek and Mahaica Creek. In 1807, Cuche’s widowed wife Anne Cathrine Marchand (1758­–1820) must have owned a plantation on the east side of Mahaica Creek. The owner of the plantation Langzaamheid on Wakenaame Island is noted as «Zwitsers». In 1804, Cuche’s wife was mentioned as planning to leave the colony. Her authorised representative was a Swiss called David Pierre Morthier (died before 1812) from Neuchâtel. Morthier seems to have managed Cuche’s estate. He lived on plantation Nooyt Gedagt on the western bank of Mahaica Creek.

=> In 1810, the plantation Neufchatel on the right bank of the Mahaica River in Demerara was offered to the highest bidder, «with all its appurtenances, Negroes, &c. &c.». In 1808, a tax on 58 slaves (slave units, or «Piezas de India»). It is today called Neuchâtel Estate. Next to this plantation there was another called Vevay or Vevey.

=> In 1808, Jeanette Crousaz from Lutry (Canton of Vaud, W Switzerland) from a patrician family, owners of the local castle since 1598 and known for foreign services, among them General Pierre François Crousaz de Corsier (1690-1769) for Holland, lived in the colony of Demerrara, where she married Rudolph Onink (died 1813) from Rio Demerary, a slave owner and trustee and probably the director or administrator of plantation Wittenburg.

=> There are indications that one member of the Sellon family might have owned a plantation in Demerrara. In 1815, the «Royal Gazette» announced that a fugitive slave could be picked up in prison by his owner Sellon.

=> Abraham Zubli (born 1760), son of Paulus Zubli (1709–1760) from a St.Gallen family, was born in Berbice on plantation Zublis Lust according to the «British Guiana Colonists Index», in New Amsterdam according to MyHeritage, the latter being more probable. He was to our knowledge the only Swiss present at all points of the slave-trade triangle during his lifetime. Like most of his siblings, he went to Holland at an early age and started a military career as a 16-year-old. First, he was cadet in the Infantry Regiment No. 10 under Luitenant Generaal Van Raders. He was promoted to ensign after 20 months, then he served under Generaal Majoor Van Brakell and was promoted to lieutenant and captain. He quit his service in 1799. Abraham Zubli married twice (1790: Hendrika Catharina Wesselink; 1795: Wilhelmina Johanna de Clercq). In 1809, he reappeared in Fort Elmina, one of the most important Dutch slave-trade strongholds on the West African coast (today’s Ghana). At that time, the fort was no longer fully operative, but Abraham Zubli is registered there in the function of «Magazijnmeester» and member of both the Small Council (responsible for the slave-trade) and the Grand Council (where the adinistrators of Accra, Axim, Chama, and Cormantijn each had a seat). Due to a conflict with the Governor General, he left Elmina on a ship bound for Berbice between 1809 and 1812. His family is said to have received news in 1811 that he had arrived in Berbice and was planning to move on to Demerara. After that nothing more was heard from him. The children from his second marriage called themselves de Clerq Zubli, a family branch active in the Dutch East Indies which is still around and of renown and which still has ties to Switzerland.

=> In 1811, Anselme Fleury from Neuchâtel married Aimable de Corbinière, probably from Saint-Domingue, in Demerrara.

=> In 1810, the cantonal authorities of Zurich dealt with a number of complaints from local trading houses on account of the conflict between France and Britain («continental blockade») which led to sequestrations. The goods concerned were, among others, long fiber cotton from Demerara.

1.6.3  Essequibo

=> Beath Rodolph Emmanuel Mottet (1752–1819) possibly from Murten (Canton of Fribourg) married Jeanne Johanna Brunell in 1785. In 1816, he sold to R. Burnthorn his sugar plantation Lust tot Rust situated on «Varken Eiland», Essequibo, which was in future to be called Endeavour, with all the buildings, cultivation, and 11 slaves. In 1836, his widowed wife Johanna Mottet was compensated £231 4s 6d by Britain for the loss of her «property» of 4 slaves. Several other individuals of the name Mottet lived in Essequibo and Demerrara.

=> Francis Amick (born 1780) from Switzerland (according to the «British Guiana Colonists») married Johanna Deborah Fischer in 1818. In 1824, Amick, who was the «deliberating executor of the estate of Peter Laggan» was involved in the auction of a «Negro man named Richard». Scotsman Laggan’s estate was plantation Coffee Grove on the River Essequibo. In 1835, Amick’s widowed wife received a compensation of £65 4s 10d for the loss of one slave.

1.7 Haiti (colony «Saint-Domingue»)

1.7.1 Economic

=> In 1528, merchant and nobleman Hieronymus Sailer (1495-1559) from St. Gallen (E Switzerland), together with Heinrich Ehinger from Konstanz (Germany), received a license issued by the Spanish crown which allowed them to colonise Venezuela and to transport 50 mining workers from Germany to Santo Domingo, from where they would be distributed among the Spanish colonies. Sailer was also granted permission to use the Santo Domingo shipyards.

=> Hans Caspar Zoller (1574–1644) and Hans Felix Escher, sons of wealthy patrician families from Zurich, made their apprenticeships as merchants in Lyon. They travelled to Hollland and Britain, and then signed on a French slaving vessel in Dieppe, with a profit-sharing rate of 0.25 to 0.5 percent. In December 1595, they set sail and via Madeira, Cadonor (Cotonou?), Cap Palmas and Sao Thomé reached Cap Lopez (today Gabun), where they took on board the slaves for Brazil. They then crossed the Atlantic, and in September 1596, they landed at Cabo Branco (Paraíba), where they sold their «freight». For three months they stayed in Bahia before continuing their voyage to Santo Domingo, from where, in 1597, they returned to France via the Azores.

=> Around 1700, the French planters Jean-Joseph du Paty (a former buccaneer) and Julien Raymond employed a Swiss mason, who was sent for from La Rochelle and was responsible for the construction of their plantation house and sugar-cane mill in the Léogâne area.

=> Jean Nerette from Versoix in the Canton of Geneva, formerly sergeant in the Regiment de Hallwyl, had served in Saint-Domingue for 23 years. He decided to stay there when the regiment was called back in 1764. He became a planter and, not having known that he was entitled to military salaries, applied for payments on account of his military discharge.

=> One Daniel Robert (1570–1634) from Sonvillier, Canton of Berne, died at Droit in the Artibonite area.

=> Ignace Ferrety from Switzerland was a master mason in Saint-Domingue and received his naturalisation documents in 1785/1786.

=> Vinzenz (Vincent) Stürler‏‎ (1714–1753) from Schöftland (Canton of Berne/Aargau) died in Saint-Domingue and was buried on plantation Fontaine near Mirebalais because he was a Protestant.

=> Rosemonde Gottchall, a Swiss lady from Berne, wife of Mr. Gottchall, bookseller on Saint-Domingue, came to Saint-Domingue (Le Cap) around 1742 with her two daughters, then aged 16 and 11. The mother died in 1744, but before her death she had converted to Catholicism.

=> On the eve of the Frech Revolution, 31% of the shares of the most important French slave-trading company, the «Compagnie des Indes», were in Swiss hands. Shareholders were Leonhard Meister, Professor of theology from Zurich, silk merchant Andreas Gossweiler, as well Johann Ulrich Geilinger, Jonas Hauser and Jacob Sulzer, all from Winterthur. The «Compagnie des Indes» for a long time held the monopoly for the slave trade to Saint-Domingue.

=> In his travelogue «Bericht des Grafen Karl von Zinzendorf über seine handelspolitische Studienreise durch die Schweiz 1764», the Austrian count describes the commercial activities of the Ammann banking and merchant company from Schaffhausen (N Switzerland), which traded in cotton, indigo, sugar, and tobacco. The first quality cotton came from Curaçao and Berbice, but from the latter there were no more imports because «the colony has been ruined». From that cotton, the Toggenburg textile industry (today Canton of St.Gallen) produced muslin fabrics. Curaçao cotton was very rare: a ship that transported 60 bales from Saint Domingue only carried 6 from Curaçao. The second quality variety came from Martinique and Saint-Domingue and was transported to Switzerland via Marseilles, Lyon, Belfort and Basel. The third (and worst) quality cotton came from Barbados. Nearly 1000 bags of cotton were imported by Ammann every year and were processed in the Toggenburg and Glarus area. In the second half of the 18th century, 35% of the cotton it delivered into the Zurich, Berne/Aargau, Toggenburg, and Appenzell areas were from Berbice or Essequibo. The Ammann company did business with such slave trading firms as Schalch & Cie., Hegner, Gier & Cie., Pelloutier, Petitpierres, Tourton & Baur, and Bourcards. From Schalch & Cie alone, Ammann received in six years deliveries of indigo worth 600,000 guilders.  The archive of Johann Jakob Amman (1699–1777) and his son Johann Heinrich (1722–1794) has been handed down to the Frey family and – being a private archive – is still nor accessible. Industrial magnate Hermann Frey (1844–1928) was a board member of the «Bank in Schaffhausen», which merged into the «Schweizerische Bankverein» and later UBS. The banking house «Ammann» was liquidated as late as 1921.

=> In Lyon, the Zellweger companies were among the most active merchants, and together with the St.Gallen family enterprises of the Sollicoffre (Zollikofer), Scheidlin (Scheitlin), Weguelin (Wegelin) and Councler (Kunkler) exported to the West Indies. The Zellweger companies exported textiles and imported colorants for their linen and cotton industry as well as colonial goods, such as coffee from Saint-Domingue. Focused on the Saint-Doimingue market and therefore oriented towards Bordeaux were «Zellweger et Ougster» (Zellweger & Eugster), «Zellweger frères et Cie », «Scheidlin et Finguerlin», and «Laurent Councler et Cie». In August 1750, «Councler et Cie » exported five bales of cloth to Cap Français.

=> The Mississippi Company (Compagnie de la Louisiane ou d’Occident or Compagnie d’Occident) created by John Law in 1717 absorbed the monopolies and privileges of earlier companies, such as the Compagnie de Saint-Domingue. It attracted shareholders and speculators by the prospect of profits from trade with textiles and bullion, and from the export of slaves to Saint-Domingue. Among the Swiss shareholders was Louis Guiguer (1675–1747) from Bürglen, Canton of Thurgau, who with an investment of 800,000 £ was the fourth largest single shareholder of the company. From the same canton, from Steckborn, came members of the Labhard, Deucher and Füllemann families. From Trogen in the Canton of Appenzell Ausserrhoden came the investors Conrad Zellweger-Tanner (1659-1749), Conrad Zellweger-Sulser (1694-1771) and Johannes Zellweger-Sulser (1695-1774). Others included the banker Henri d’Antoine Locher from St.Gallen, the Berne-based bank Malacrida, several citizens from Geneva and several citizens from St.Gallen residing in Lyon.

=> Christophe Jean Baur (1699–1770) and Louis Tourton († 1786), both from Geneva and since 1740 partners in the banking house «Tourton et Baur», in 1748 helped create the «Société pour le commerce de la traite des nègres à la côte d’Angola et de là aux îles de Saint-Domingue» by investing 375,000 livres each. The company bought three ships serving as storage vessels on the Angola coast and five slavers for the Middle Passage. They decided to expand their activities to Martinique and to buy 13 ships altogether. Shareholder and shipping agent Antoine Vincent Walsh (1703 – 1763) from Ireland and stationed in Nantes had a reputation for overstraining his crews, neglecting his vessels and overloading his slavers. Out of 5000 ensalved boarding his ships in Africa, only 4000 arrived alive in the Americas. 

=> (Jean-Jacques) Meyer & (David) Crom from their company seat in Lyon exported textile goods to Spain and the Spanisch colonies. At one point, even the City of St.Gallen was among the creditors of the St.Gallen based head-office «Meyer & Crommische Credit-Wesen». David Crom (or Kromm) (born 1681?) from St.Gallen established himself in 1716 as secretary to the Swedish ambassador, probably through the intermediary of his fellow citizen Antoine Hogguer. In 1719, the Crom trading house made important investments in the French Compagnie des Indes and at the moment, when the «System» collapsed, that investement had reached a volume of 830,000 livres. David Crom himself had aquired enough shares to take part in the General Assembly of the Company on 22 February 1720. When the collapse approached, he acted as the Paris representative of the «Nation Suisse», i.e. the community of Swiss merchants in Lyon. Crom still held this position in the 1740s.

=> The following Swiss are registered to have lived in Saint-Domingue between 1750 and 1800: Gabriel Descombaz (bookshop-stationer, freemason), Mr. Despassier, Jacob Dupan (merchant from Geneva, freemason), Jean Estève (from Coppet, then Canton of Berne), Marie Elisabeth Globesk, Henri-Albert Gosse, Chevalier d’Illens (officer), Jacob Mayer (merchant from the Canton of Berne), Jean Meschinet (from Geneva), François Joseph Mollinger (from Basel), Charles Ravy, Jean Utry Sphey (soldier), Antoine Tournier, David-Philippe-Barthélémy Treytorrens (officer), Joseph Valdony (officer from Poschiavo, Canton of Graubünden, freemason), Henriette Vincent, Adrien Virte (officer of the Swiss Guards).

=> Niklaus Jenner (1695–1728) from Berne died in Saint-Domingue. His brother was Jean (Johann) Jenner (1702–1749), who was a banker in La Rochelle and had close business relations with Saint-Domingue via Swiss mercenary officer and plantation owner Johannes von Hallwyl (1688-1753). In 1742, Jean Jenner married Susanne Belin from a French family of merchants, plantation owners, sugar traders, and investors in triangular slaving expeditions, all of which closely related to Saint-Domingue. His sons Johann Niklaus Jenner (1743–1817) and Adrian Allard Jenner‏‎ (1742–1774) were both captains at the service of the French. Johann Niklaus later became a politician in Switzerland.

=> Sigmund von Wattenwyl‏‎ (1706–1745) from Berne died in Saint-Domingue.

=> Hans Ulrich Faesch from Basel sailed from Amsterdam to the West Indies in 1770. His last letter, dated May 5, 1774 said that he was intending to go to Saint-Domingue. 

=> In 1788, one Cavin from Switzerland asked to be paid in advance the costs of his passage to Saint-Domingue.  

=> Plantation owners in Saint-Domingue with Swiss backgrounds:

Louis-Joseph Bloisselier de Carnotte from Geneva, coffee plantation

• the Simon family, indigo plantations (Augustin Simon, son of a Saint-Domingue plantation owner, founded an indiennes manufactory in Nantes and became partner of the company Simon & Roques, which invested in triangular expeditions)

Jost Henry Girard from the Canton of Berne was lieutenant of the militia of Petit-Goave on Saint-Domingue, where he also lived. He was over 50, owned two coffee plantations, was married in Switzerland and had some children, one of whom was living with him on Saint-Domingue. He applied for French citizenship in 1781/1783.

Louis Isaac Chanson de Cormont from the Canton of Berne had been an officer in the «Regiment de Chilleberg» (owner since 1690: Hans Jakob Schellenberg, 1634–1714, from Richterswil). He was 42 years old and was living in Saint-Domingue, when he applied for French citizenship. In his last will he provided for his plantation and his slaves. His documents of 1707–1713 include his application for citizenship, his marriage certificate and his testament. 

• the Meynadier family from Geneva, coffee plantation Mont-Soucy (Jean-Louis Privat from Geneva, son of Anne-Andrienne Meynadier, was forced to return to Geneva in 1796 because of the slave revolt)

Bertrand brothers, Bertrand père (1781, Artibonite plain)

• members of the Cadusch or Cadouche family from Graubünden (E Switzerland) were influential planters and owners of great sugar plantations

Jean Trembley (1719–1791) from Geneva (1781, Artibonite plain, indigo and cotton, with slaves from Benin, Elmina, the Gold Coast, the Congo, Nigeria and Angola). Trembley also worked as a hydraulic engineer in the region. His project was installed in 1786.

Jean David Ramel from the Canton of Berne/Vaud (W Switzerland), owner, at the age of 45, of a large cotton and indigo plantation on Saint-Domingue in 1795

Jean-Conrad Baron de Spechbach (or Spebach or Spitzbach) from Miécourt, Prince-Bishopric of Bâle, was an officer in the mercenary Regiment de Hallwyl and commander of the Jérémie and the Grande-Anse militia around 1777, and in 1789 owner of a plantation and a sugar refinery in the Cap Dame Marie region (Grand’Anse). He became immensely rich. In 1777, he received in Port-au-Prince the ribbon and the cross of the «Royal and Military Order of St.Louis». Being childless, he returned to Miécourt and asked all his relatives and allies to accompany him to Saint-Domingue to take over his plantation and become his heirs. Nobody followed him and he returned alone. In the Haitian Revolution, his property was laid waste.

Jean-Louis Robert Coëls from Switzerland

Benoist-Lambert Robert-Coëls from a family with Swiss origins, coffee plantation

Jean-Baptiste-François chevalier de Volant, son of the commander of the Swiss troops in garrison in Saint-Domingue

Anne-Marie-Elisabeth-Marguerite de Nucé, wife of Louis Tousard d’Olbec (1757-1840) from Grône and Saint-Maurice (Canton of Valais), coffee plantation Massacre

Jeanne-Elisabeth Gouin, wife of Louis Sévérin de Costar (b. 1743), officer in the Swiss regiment d’Hallwyl

Maria Jeanne Ducoing, wife of one Mr Comblefort from Geneva (coffee)

Jeanne-Benedictine Ducamp, wife of Boisselier de Carnotte from Geneva

• In 1784, Charles Emmanuel de Rivaz (1753-1830) from Sion in the canton of Valais (SW Switzerland) left for Saint-Domingue to administer the assets of Count Paradès, his brother in law.

• In 1795, through a contract signed in Nyon, Jean-David Ramel (1757-1819) from Château-d’Oex in the Canton of Berne/Vaud (W Switzerland) became the owner of a sugar, indigo and cotton plantation in the Saint-Marc area.

Raymond Marie (1748-1825) from Geneva was a merchant and owned (a) sugar, cotton and indigo plantation(s). In 1791 he was a deputy member of the Assemblée coloniale and a member of the Assemblée provinciale.

• In 1736, a member of the Zollikofer (Zollicoffre) family from St.Gallen and also active in Lyon was employed by J.-J. Brossard de La Poupardière on his plantation, which had gone from sugar to indigo in 1733. Brossard de La Poupardière was also trading with Gaspard Councler (from the St.Gallen family of the «Kunkler») in Marseilles.

• In 1748, François Larguier was a merchant in Lyon. He married Jeanne Élisabeth Solicoffre (from the St.Gallen family of the «Zollikofer») and acquired the citizenship of Orbe in the Canton of Berne/Vaud. Larguier was the owner of a coffee plantation at Plymouth in the Jérémie region.

Johann Ulrich Staub (1723–1775) from Sevelen in the Canton of St.Gallen joined the Dutch army in 1742 and was taken prisoner by the French in 1746 during the Siege of Brussels in the context of the War of the Austrian Succession. From France, where several of his ventures failed, he travelled to Saint-Domingue on a slaving-ship, from where he reported to his municipality of Sevelen that, in the Port-de-Paix area, he owned a coffee plantation with 100,000 coffee trees and a surface of «a square hour». The plantation could also be used for sugar and indigo production. 110 slaves had to work for him, he wrote, and if the price of coffee stayed the same, his plantation would bring him an annual revenue of 10,000 francs in 1772. After 30 years, he meant to visit his mother in his home village, but he died at the age of 54 in Saint-Domingue. He held the rank of a captain.

=> The following individuals with Swiss background were compensated or made attempts at compensation by the French government for loss of property, i.e. slaves, in the Haitian Revolution:

Jean Antoine Abeille (1770-1826), died in Lausanne, Canton of Berne/Vaud

Jeanne Madeleine Courlet (1769-1849) from Geneva

Pierre Gautier (1763-1838) from Geneva (coffee business)

Raymond Marie (1748-1825) from Geneva

• 1825-1830, Carl Friedrich Lutsdorf (1785-1835) from Berne, officer in French services, made complaints about the compensations to be paid to his father-in-law, César Rey de la Rousse (born 1775), former colonel in the service of the French in Saint-Domingue.

• In 1827, Joseph-Hubert Franc (1773-1858?) from Monthey in the canton of Valais (SW Switzerland) was informed in a letter (without name of sender) that he could not receive compensation for his plantation slaves, since, in 1789, they had been legally separated from the plantation grounds and could therefore only be considered as moveable objects under the Ordinance of 10th April 1826.

• Swiss officer Abraham-Rodolphe-Henri-Louis de Treytorrens for one third of a coffee plantation as heir to his aunt (Marie Letort, sister of the former owner) and of 1/12 of another sugar plantation as heir to his aunt Marie Letort (daughter of the former owner). Letort was the name of one of the two plantations.

=> The following merchants, trading companies, and banks with Swiss backgrounds were active in Saint-Domingue:

• «Louis Nadal & Le Roy», «Roque & Bonnafus», «Marcet et Corneille» from Geneva, based in Cap-Français

Raymond-Marie Duperrier in Port-au-Prince

• members of the Zollikofer family from St.Gallen (E Switzerland)

• the Cuentz brothers from St.Gallen (E Switzerland), speculation on indigo

Sebastian Kunz (1683–1734), whose son died at the age of 12 in Saint-Domingue

• «Marcuard, Beuther & Cie.» from Berne, creditors of a trading house active in Saint-Domingue

• In 1824, Grégoire de Riedmatten (1782-1846), from a prominent patrician family in the canton of Valais (SW Switzerland), officer in several Swiss regiments in the service of France, married Nathalie Taffanel de La Jonquière († Sion, 1862) from a family of colonial administrators (Nouvelle France), Saint-Domingue plantation owners and coffee merchants

V. Gaspard Deonna (1746-1797) from Geneva was a master founder in Saint-Domingue.

Michel Lullin de Châteauvieux (1754–1802), a banker from Geneva, died in Santo Domingo (Los Alcarrizos), where he probably lived as a planter. He had been married to Amélie Christine Pictet, also from Geneva. Their daughter Anne Lullin de Châteauvieux (1793–1868) was born in Lancy (Canton of Geneva) and spent her childhood in Santo-Domingo before returning to Geneva with her widowed mother at the age of 14.

=> Jean-Simon Chaudron (1758-1846) from France was sent to Switzerland at an early age to perfect his watch-making skills. In 1784, he left Paris for Saint-Domingue. In 1791 he got married in Cap Français to Geneviève Melanie Stollenwerck and took over the administration of his father-in-law’s sugar plantation. In 1793, he fled from the slave uprising to Philadelphia, where he associated himself with goldsmith Charles Billon.

=> Charles (Frédéric) Billon (1776–1822) from Le Locle worked as a silversmith 1793. He then moved to Philadelphia, where in 1797 he married Jeanne Charlotte Sophie Stollenwerck, born in 1781 in Cap Français in Saint-Domingue. His father-in-law was Pierre Hubert Stollwerck, watchmaker, coffee planter, slave trader, and merchant, who owned a coffee and indigo plantation on the Champagne River in Upper Plaisance, a parish in the north of Saint-Domingue. Pierre Hubert and his brother Chevalier (killed in the Haitian revolution) are said to have owned hundreds of slaves, some of whom they nursed back to health in a hospital before selling them at good profits.

=> The textile family businesses of the Zellweger in Trogen (Canton of Appenzell Ausserrhoden, E Switzerland) imported «cotton de saint domingue».

=> The trading company «J.-R. Wirz & Cie.» was owned to a large degree by Hans-Rudolf Wirz from Basel and supported by the Parisian bank «Dufour, Mallet et Le Royer». Wirz became a great ship-owner and financier in Bordeaux, together with Nantes one of the great centres of the African slave-trade and the most important port for importing Saint-Domingue coffee. The Wirz company owned 13 ships and took part in four triangular expeditions between 1786–1789: two from the Senegal (one of which to Cayenne), one from the Gold Coast, one from Porto Novo, thus «exporting» more than six hundred slaves.

=> In 1791, the French aristocrat and Minister of Finance Louis Auguste Le Tonnelier de Breteuil fled to Switzerland, and in Solothurn he had a leisure walk built through the gorge dedicated to Saint Verena. Le Tonnelier de Breteuil owned sugar and coffee plantations in Saint-Domingue, which he had to sell later.

=> Two members of the Hollard family from Lausanne in the Canton of Berne/Vaud (NE Switzerland), Louis and Charles, in the context of the Haitian «debt of independence» demanded the repayment of 1000 francs from the French banking house «J. Lafitte et Cie.», which was centrally involved in financing the Haitian government of Jean-Pierre Boyer, who was struggling with the «ransom of independence».

=> Rudolf-Emanuel von Haller (1747–1833), banker, merchant, and politician from Berne, learnt from a trading partner that the slave rising had come to a head and that Port-au-Prince had gone up in flames. His trading partner advised him to gather as much sugar and coffee in Marseilles (in order to profit from rising prices later).

=> David Louis Agassiz (1737­–1807), uncle of the racist and glaciologist Louis Agassiz (1807–1873), was a financier who left Switzerland for France in 1747 with his friend Jacques Necker in order to work in the Parisian branch of the Thellusson et Vernet bank (investments in colonial companies, links with the slave trade). Until 1770, David Louis Agassiz cooperated with Pourtalès of Neuchâtel via the company «Joseph Lieutaud et Louis Agassiz». Necker was to become Louis XVI’s Minister of Finance, whereas David Louis Agassiz left for Britain where he acquired a considerable fortune and anglicised his name to Arthur David Lewis Agassiz. He was naturalised by a private Act of Parliament in 1766. Agassiz dealt in cotton, silk, sugar, cocoa, coffee, tobacco, and cochineal and had business relations with France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Germany, Belgium, Denmark, the Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland, Russia, North and South America and the East and West Indies. In 1776, Francis Anthony Rougemont (1713–1788) from a Neuchâtel family joined the partnership under the name of «Agassiz, Rougemont et Cie.», a company which had close ties with «MM Pourtalès et Cie.» from Neuchâtel (ownership of plantations on Grenada, indiennes industry, banking). Arthur David Lewis Agassiz’s son Arthur Agassiz (1771–1866), cousin of the racist Louis Agassiz, took over the family business, and later formed a company «Agassiz, Son & Company». In 1823, Arthur Agassiz was working in Port-au-Prince (Haiti) with «Jean Robert Bernard et Cie.».

=> The Swiss slave-trading company «Solier, Martin et Salavy», whose Marseilles activities are well documented for the years 1781-1787, received investments from Hunziker (Berne/Aargau), de Fellenberg and Manuel Frères (Berne), Deonna, Fazy-Claparede, Lullin, Plantamour, Milliet (Geneva), de Pourtalès (Neuchâtel), Jean-Theodore Rivier, de Charriere, de Severy, de Chandieu, de Gingins, Chavannes, de Constant, d’lllens, Polier (Lausanne), Ferdinand de Roverea (Rolle), de Saussure (Morrens), Jurgla, Perdonnet, Couvreu de Deckersberg (Vevey). Among the documents of the latter family, Couvreu de Deckersberg, a leaflet was found, advertising «the expedition of a vessel of some 400 tons, which will sail for the Guinea Coast to trade 400 to 450 blacks in order to transport them to the French Isle of Saint-Domingue on a Portuguese ship by permission granted by the French court to a company in Lisbon, which undertakes the equipping.»

=> One Stahel from Switzerland died in Saint-Domingue in 1786, having lived in Fort Dauphin since 1774. He left a house and land with a lime kiln. The authorities had to deal with his inheritance matter. 

=> When Christoph Burckhardt-Merian (1740-1812), merchant and bailiff from Bâle, was confronted with fears that the Haitian Revolution could endanger trade and business, he answered that reports now showed a brighter picture. There were, it was true, still armed «negroes» roaming the woods, but Whites and Blacks were already celebrating their reconciliation with great festivities. The statement of account of the slave-ship «Le Conquérant» showed, still according to Burckhardt-Merian, that sales opportunities for «negroes» were favourable. Should unrest in Saint-Domingue continue, he argued, they would have to be sold in Suriname. The price «per negro» was 650-800 guilder, according to their looks.

=> In 1785, Ignace Ferrety, master-mason from Switzerland in Artibonite, Saint-Domingue, received his documents of naturalisation.

=> The following slave-ships equipped with Swiss investments or owned and fitted out by Swiss merchants sailed to Saint-Domingue in the context of triangular expeditions:

• In 1774–1775, Abraham Henry (1734–1793) from Neuchâtel and his father-in law Jacques Montet (1715–1784), as «J. Montet, Henry & Cie.» and later as «Montet, Henry et Bellamy», owned and fitted out on five expeditions the four slave-ships «La Vigilante» (Bordeaux => Gold Coast => Cap Français, 250/208 slaves), «Le Vigilant» (Bordeaux => Bight of Benin => Whydah => Badagry/Apa => Princes Island => Cap Français, 412/351), «Union» (1787/88, Bordeaux => West Central Africa => St. Helena => Cap Français, 275/250), 1789/90, Bordeaux => Gambia => Cap Français, 127/113), and «Nestor» (1790, Bordeaux => Gambia => Port-au-Prince, 169/150). The company dealt in «guinéss bleus», a special type of indiennes textiles, produced by «Porchet & Cie.», founded by< a merchant from Neuchâtel.

• In the 1780s, Louis d’lllens (1749-1819) from Lausanne and «Louis d’Illens et Cie», in association with Jacob van Berchem (1736–1794) and Augustin Roguin (1768–1827), imported coffee, indigo, and cotton directly from Martinique. They were also active in the slave trade by outfitting four slave-ships (1790–1792), namely «L’Helvétie» (1791/92, to Havana), «Pays de Vaud» (1790, Marseille => Moçambique => Cap Français, 579/485 slaves), «La Ville de Lausanne» (1790, Marseille => Moçambique => Cap Français, 796/550 slaves) and «Anaz» (1791, Marseille => Moçambique, left home port, then no further information). Jacob van Berchem alone was the organiser of the following slave voyage: «Marie Thérèse» (178384, Nantes => West Central Africa => St.Helena, unknown outcome).

• In 1751, Emmanuel Weis (1712–1780) from Basel, together with six associates, founded the maritime insurance company «Emmanuel Weis et compagnie». It existed until 1756. Together with his brother, he became active in the sugar, indigo and coffee business and speculation with Saint-Domingue as «Emmanuel et Nicolas Weis». In 1770, the company became co-owners (56/120) of the slave-ship «Prince Manuel», which carried out a slaving voyage from La Rochelle via West Central Africa to Cap Français (233 slaves embarked, 212 arrived). They commission two associates in Saint-Marc with collecting 42,000 £ of debts from the sale of the slaves of the expedition of the vessel «Début» to the coast of Angola. In 1774, the company included two sons of Emmanuel (Conrad-Achille and Marc-Jérémie) and became «Emmanuel et Nicolas Weis et fils». Emmanuel, who had at least three of his daughters baptised in Basel, retired from the company and died in 1780. In 1765, one daughter, Anne-Marie, had been married to Jacques-Allard Belin, who later became a merchant in Saint-Domingue. Emmanuel’s brother Nicolas died in 1793, leaving a fortune of 386,078 £. From 1779–1790, the Weis company participated in the following slaving expeditions: «Belle Pauline» (1783/84, Weis as owner, La Rochelle => Malembo => Cap Français, 624/568 slaves), «Suzanne», «Treize-Cantons» (1784, Weis as owner, La Rochelle => Loango => Port-au-Prince, 548/499 slaves; 1786/87, La Rochelle => Porto Novo => Cap Français, 332/283 slaves), «Jolie Henriette de Ribeaucourt» (1784, Trieste => Ile de France => Moçambique => Cap Français, 368/267 slaves) , «Iris» (1783, Weis as owner, La Rochelle => West Central Africa, no further record), «Elise» (1783/4, Weis as owner, La Rochelle => West Central Africa => St. Helena => Port-au-Prince, 386/351 slaves), «Nouvel-Achille» (1783/84, Weis as owner, La Rochelle => Gold Coast => Sao Tome => Cap Français, 414/355 slaves) , «Rochelais», «Réparateur» (1786/87, Weis as owner, La Rochelle => Porto Novo => Sao Tome => Port-au-Prince, 411/410 slaves; 1787/89, Weis as owner, La Rochelle => Porto Novo => Port-au-Prince, 514/512 slaves; 1790/91, Weis as owner, La Rochelle => Gold Coast => Port-au-Prince, 420/360 slaves), «Ville de Basle» (1786/87, Weis as owner, La Rochelle => Porto Novo => Port-au-Prince, 270/236 slaves). In 1788/89, the Weis company insured the triangular expedition of the vessel «Madame» (Nantes => Moçambique => Cape of Good Hope => Port-au-Prince, 586/405). The insurance contract provided that for each invalid slave, the owners of the vessel would be paid 500 £, which – considering a probable sales price of 400–450 £ – made it possible to gain from losses.

• The merchant house Pelloutier, Bourcard & Cie. (originally from Basel, with a Nantes branch) was active in the slave trade and ran the slave ship «Comte de Tréville», which three times transported slaves to Haiti: 1784/85, Nantes => Bight of Benin => Ouidah => Lagos => Princes Island => Saint-Marc, 367/313 slaves; 1786/87, Nantes => Port Novo => Princes Island => Saint-Marc, 411/350 slaves; 1789/90, Nantes => Port Novo => Princes Island => Léogâne (546/465 slaves). From 1770 onwards, Benoît Boucard from a patrician Basel family was a shareholder.

Jean Daniel Schweighauser (1714–1781) from Basel moved to Nantes, where he became a banker and was involved in importing tobacco, sugar, coffee, tea and cotton from the Americas. In July, 1777, his oldest daughter, Marie-Rose, married the nineteen-year-old Pierre-Frédéric Dobrée (1757-1801) from a well known mercantile family in Guernsey.  In 1778, Schweighauser informed his supplier of canvas Johann Friedrich Ketzler in Hirschberg (Silesia) that his merchandise was destined for the slave trade («traitte des Negre»). At Schweighauser’s death in 1781, his widow and Dobrée carried on the firm, and the latter was for a time U.S. consul in Nantes. Together they invested in commercial vessels and in the slave ships «Véronique» and «Le Succès». The «Véronique» sailed from Nantes to West Central Africa and transported 275 enslaved Africans to Saint-Marc (Saint-Domingue) on her first voyage (1787/88). On the second, 386 enslaved Africans were taken on board in Loango, but then there was a slave insurrection and the ship was burnt.

Jean-Louis Baux (1726-1792) from Geneva and Jean-Étienne Balguerie (1756–1831), as the company «Baux, Balguerie & Cie» owned and fitted out the slave-ships.«Le Chasseur» (1789/91, Bordeaux => Moçambique => Ile de France => Cap Français, 434/300) and «Le Nélée» (1789, Bordeaux => Ambriz => Cap Français, 372/339);

Georges Riedy and Benjamin Thurninger from Basel had their main office in Nantes, with branches in Brest and Lorient. 1783–1798 they fitted out ten slave-ships and supplied indiennes textiles for the slave trade. They had a branch on Saint-Domingue, which organised the sale of captured africans to the planters. They owned the following slave-ships: «Affriquain» (1783/84, Nantes => West Central Africa => St.Helena => Cabinda => Cap Français, 530/428 slaves), «Georges» (1788, Nantes => West Central Africa => St.Helena => Les Cayes, 608/553 slaves; 1789/90, Nantes => West Central Africa => St.Helena => Malembo => Cap Français, 484/440 slaves; 1792, Nantes => West Central Africa => St.Helena => Les Cayes, 440/400 slaves) , «Georgette» (1788/89, Nantes => Congo River => Les Cayes, 377/343 slaves; 1790, Nantes => West Central Africa => St. Helena => Cap Français, 305/278 slaves; 1791/1792, Nantes => West Central Africa => St. Helena => Malembo => Congo River => Saint-Marc, 336/306 slaves), «Espiège» (1790/91, Nantes => Gabon => Cap Français => Port-au-Prince, 37/28 slaves), «Jeune Auguste» (1791, Nantes => Gabon => Port-au-Prince, 264/200 slaves), «Passepartout» (1790, Nantes => shipwrecked, no slaves), «Petit Georges» (1791, La Rochelle => Africa => destination unknown, 310/266 slaves). Thurninger also invested in the slave-ship «Le Saint-Clément» (1784, Rochefort => Gold Coast => Cap Français, 175/150 slaves).

Jean-Théodore Rivier from Geneva, as the company «Rivier et Cie.», invested in the slave-ship «L’Adèle», which in 1787/88 sailed from Le Havre via Cabinda to Port-au-Prince (299/272 slaves) and in 1789/90 from Le Havre via West Central Africa, St. Helena, and Loango to Cap Français (440/400). 1788–1790 He also invested in the slave ship «Conquérant» (1790, Le Havre => West Central Africa => St. Helena => Malembo => Rio Dande => Cap Français, 462/420).

Augustin Simon from Bâle, son of a plantation owner in Saint-Domingue, together with Henry Roques, also from Bâle, founded an indiennes production company in Nantes to suplly the slaving-expedition launched from that port. They were active as «Simon & Roques» and were owners of the following slave-ships: «Duc d’Orléan» (1789/90, Nantes => West Central Africa => St. Helena => Léogâne, 332/302 slaves; 1791/92, Nantes => West Central Africa => St. Helena => Léogâne, 249/227), «Superbe» (1790/91, , Nantes => West Central Africa => St. Helena => Cap Français, 523/476 slaves), «Uranie» (1790/91, Nantes => Cabinda => Saint-Marc, 638/600 slaves), «Roi d’Ardres» (1791/1792, Nantes => Lagos => Prince Island => Port-au-Prince, 225/192), «Frasquita» (1791/92, Nantes => West Central Africa => St. Helena => Ambriz => Malembo, 406/405; 1793, Nantes => captured by Portuguese before embarking slaves).

• «La ville de Bâle» (1786) sailed from La Rochelle and was destined to transport part of its 236 slaves to Cap-Français. The Bâle-based company «Weiss et fils» had invested in the expedition.

• «Le Saturne» (1787/88, Nantes => Bight of Benin => Ouidah => Lagos => Saint-Marc, 353/320 slaves). A citizen from Vevey (Canton of Berne/Vaud, W Switzerland) held shares, the ship carried Swiss cheese from the County of Gruyère and indiennes textiles produced by the companies «Pelloutier» and «Bourcard & Cie.», originally from Bâle.

• Vessels with shares held by one of the three Burkhardt companies originally from Bâle («Christoph Burckhardt & Sohn zur Goldenen Müntz», «Christoph Burckhardt & Cie.», «Bourcard Fils & Cie.»): «Bonne Sophie» (1783/84, Honfleur => Malembo => Cap Français, 499/482 slaves), «Petit Mathurin» (1787/1789, Nantes => West Central Africa => St. Helena => Port-au-Prince, 176/160 slaves); «Véronique» (1787/1788, West Central Africa => St. Helena => Saint-Marc, 275/223), «Georges» (1789/90, West Central Africa => St. Helena => Cap Français, 484/440 slaves), «Roy d’Angole» (1789/1790, Le Havre => Malembo => Port-au-Prince, 549/500 slaves), «Neptune» (1791, La Rochelle => West Central Africa => St. Helena => Cap Français, 386/351 slaves), «Georgette» (1788/89, Nantes => Congo River => Les Cayes, 377/343 slaves; 1791/1792, Nantes => West Central Africa => St. Helena => Malembo => Congo River => Saint-Marc, 336/306 slaves), «Réparateur» (1790/91, La Rochelle => Gold Coast => Port-au-Prince, 420/360 slaves), «Necker» (1789/90, Nantes => West Central Africa => St.Helena => Port-au-Prince, 443/403 slaves; 1790, Bordeaux => Saint Louis => Port-au-Prince, 169/150 slaves; 1790/1791, Le Havre => Moçambique => port-au-Prince, 550/380 slaves),

• «Maréchal de Mouchy» (1783, Bodeaux => West Central Africa => St. Helena => Ile de France => Rio Dande => Cap Français, 960/810 slaves), in which expedition the company «Christoph Burckhardt & Sohn» held a share of 20,000£.

1.7.2 Military

=> 1721–1763, the 3rd company (approx. 200 soldiers) of the Swiss mercenary regiment of marine infantry «de Karrer» was stationed on Saint-Domingue as part of the French troops in the service of the «Compagnie des Indes». Other sources speak of 957 Swiss soldiers on Saint-Domingue. This has to be seen against a background of a total of some 1500 French troops in the whole of the French West Indies. The 5th company of the Karrer Regiment was raised in 1752 and sent to Saint-Domingue, too. In 1722, soldiers of the regiment are reported to have been stationed in Petit-Goâve, which briefly functioned as the capital of the French colony. They were commanded by Franz Adam Karrer (1672 – 1741) from Solothurn (NW Switzerland). In 1758, soldiers of that company secured the square where the revolutionary slave leader was burnt. Their commander then was Franz Josef von Hallwyl (1719-1785) from Solothurn, and the regiment was called «de Hallwyl» after him. The Swiss military presence was apparently so well known in Saint-Domingue that during the Haitian revolution, a fighting unit composed of free blacks recruited by the free men of colour to fight for pay was called «Les Suisses».

=> Johannes von Hallwyl (1688-1753) from a family active in the silk industry in the Canton of Aargau started his military carrer in 1708 in Holland, where he fought in a Swiss regiment for the Spanish Netherlands. In 1719, when his regiment was disbanded, he entered the services of the French and sailed to Martinique. In 1720, he became lieutenant of the 1st company of the Regiment de Karrer, stationed in Fort Royal. In 1724, he was captain-lieutenant and commander of the company of Swiss in Petit Goâve in Saint-Domingue. Whether or not he bought indigo, sugar and tobacco plantations in Saint Domingue from his military wages is subject of a debate. For sure he made good money by exporting colonial goods and importing cotton cloths and stockings (probably for his troops) and cheese. He went on leave to Europe in 1725, 1729, and 1734. In 1735, he was promoted to captain. In 1736, news of the death of his brother reached him, whereupon he decided to return to Switzerland as soon as possible. He was only partly able to liquidate his plantation property, and he left Saint-Domingue in January 1737 on the vessel «Labaleine» to arrive in Europe in May. He later managed to buy back the Swiss family castle near Lake Hallwil, where he took up residence in 1743 and had three children with Bernhardine von Diesbach (1728–1779), daughter of Franz Ludwig von Diesbach (1684– 1739), captain in Dutch services, and Johanna Dorothea Stürler (1697–1767), from a Bernese family linked to Holland and its East Indies. Until his death in 1753, Johannes von Hallwyl dealt in colonial goods from Saint-Domingue.

=> Anne-Marie Volant, niece of Colonel Louis-Ignaz Karrer  (1711–1751) from Dornach in the Canton of Solothurn, married François-Joseph Cailly (1700–after 1762) in about 1730. Cailly was from Sainte-Croix-en-Plaine (dept. of Haut-Rhin), France. He joined the Regiment de Karrer as a cadet in 1719 when the regiment was formed. He became ensign in 1723 and was sent to Martinique. Three years later he was promoted captain-lieutenant in the colonial regulars and given command of the half-company stationed in Saint-Domingue. In 1730 he was involved in a quarrel there which resulted in the death of a fellow officer. Acquitted of murder, Cailly was sent to command the 100 Swiss in garrison at Louisbourg, Île Royale, where he arrived in 1732. He was still active in 1762, but nothing is known of him after the Regiment de Karrer was disbanded in 1763.

=> The following military personnel from Switzerland served in Saint-Domingue:

David Philippe Legier de Treytorens, captain 1763–1768

Joseph Pertuys from Grandvillars in the Canton of Fribourg served the 3rd Company of the Regiment de Hallwyl for 6 years before taking his leave in Port-au-Prince in 1759. He established himself as a vegetable merchant. In 1761, he was around 50 years old. He died in Port-au-Prince in 1768.

• Lieutnant Meguin, 1763–1764

•  Benoît le Chambrier from a Neuchâtel family was a captain in the Regiment de Karrer at Cap Français on Saint-Domingue. He was sent on a diplomatic mission to Veracruz in Mexico in the 1740s.

Jean Nerette, sergeant in 1764

Frédéric Buscalia, captain of a privateer in the service of the French, demanded the post of a prison warden in Cap-Français in 1783

• The  Cadosch family probably came from Oberhalbstein in the Canton of the Grisons. Pierre-Louis Cadosch was an officer at the service of the French, served in the Swiss Guards, received the order «Chevalier de Saint-Louis» in 1720, became a colonel in the infantry, and died in Paris in 1750. Nicolas Louis-Pierre de Cadouche (1706–1750) was a cavalryman and holder of the order «Chevalier de Saint-Louis», too. His brother Paul Louis Cadouche was an officer in the Karrer regiment, stationed in Saint-Louis in 1746, and then as lieutenant in Saint-Domingue (Fort-Dauphin in 1751, Le Cap in 1753). In the end he held the rank of a major. His son was Paul de Cadouche (or Cadush). He was born on Saint-Domingue, was an officer and owned half of a sugar plantation in the Quartier-Morin area.. In 1777, he sold 40 slaves for 2000 livres per «piece d’Inde». He was a member of the regional council of Saint-Marc and a deputy in the first Colonial Assembly. In 1790, he travelled to France and back to Saint-Domingue in July 1791. He became President of the second Colonial Assembly of August 1791 and fled to Jamaica the same year to escape the slave revolution (beginning 22/23 August 1791). His sugar plantation had gone up in flames. Until his flight from Saint-Domingue, however, he had still tried to pursue world politics, so to speak: To maintain slavery on Saint-Domingue and against the aspirations of the gens de couleur libres, he dreamed of a self-governing colony of Saint-Domingue under British rule. To this end, he addressed a letter to British Prime Minister William Pitt, asking him to prepare for an occupation of Saint-Domingue with a show of force by 14 warships and 12,000 men. In 1795, Paul de Cadouche died in Jamaica. His brother Eustache Cadouche was commander of the Quartier-Morin militia on Saint-Domingue in 1780. His son was Pierre Paul de Cadouche (1771-1801), a cavalry officer. Other members of the family born or living in Saint-Domingue were: Charles Henry Marie de Cadouche (*1754), Jean-François Cadouche (marriage to slave woman Catherine-Affiba), Marie-Magdeleine Cadouche (*1773), Rose Marie Aimée de Cadouche (*1774, compensated for the loss of her slaves in 1826), Marie Rose Anne Cadouche (compensated for the loss of her slaves in 1826). In Quartier-Morin (SE of Cap Haïtien) there is still a «Quartier Cadouche» today.

Antoine Génaud, dit Vagner, ou Wagner, a captain without command of the gunners-bombardiers of Saint-Domingue 1734–1774.

Jean-Samuel de Mellet (1766–1793) from Vevey (Canton of Berne/Vaud) entered the services of the French early. He was sent to Saint-Domingue as commander of a batallion to suppress the slave rising. Shortly after his arrival he was killed by enemy fire in Les Cayes.

=> In the 1780s, there was a «Compagnie des Suisses» at the service of the Comte d’Artois (from 1824 on the French king Charles X) in Saint-Domingue.

=> David-Philippe Treytorrens (1721-1788) from Yverdon (Canton of Berne/Vaud, W Switzerland) became immensely rich in the service of the Dutch West-India Company. He was a captain in Saint-Domingue. He had established himself there in 1742. He became rich by marrying Marie Letort, daughter of a wealthy planter. The French authorities confirmed the nobility he had already acquired in his home country. As a captain in the Swiss regiment Hallwyl in the service of France, he helped to suppress a slave rebellion in Saint-Domingue. Through his wife, he was related to a family of French plantation owners and politicians. In 1776, David Philippe returned to Yverdon in 1776 where the Villa d’Entremont was built for him. He returned to Switzerland with his two slave children François Mida and Pauline Buisson. Pauline was commented on by the German racist theoretician Friedrich Blumenbach as being «a negro woman of perfect beauty» and «an outstanding midwife with solid professional knowledge». His four cousins demonstrate a globalized family: Daniel and François lived in Batavia, Henri as a merchant in Marseille, and François-Marc as a plantation owner in Suriname. David-Philippe’s son was David de Treytorrens.

=> Antoine Génaud, aka Vagner or Wagner from Switzerland, captain of the gunner-bombadiers in Saint-Domingue 1761-1774, was60 years old when he applied to receive the «croix de St. Louis». In 1734 he had entered the batallion of artillery de Marcé. He served there until 1745, and then entered as military policeman in the company d’Anjou. In 1747, he was promoted to lieutenant of the cavalry, which he served until 1756. He then served in Canada and then in Boston, from where he was transferred to Saint-Domingue, where he was employed to train the gunner militia in Port-de-Paix. He was wounded on the ship, was granted a pension and demanded it to be raised. He was so ill and destitute that he expressed his desire for his own death.

=> Marie-Joseph-Simon-Alexis von der Weid (1771-1802) was born in Fribourg. He entered the services of the French as cadet in the Swiss Regiment de Waldner in 1781 and was promoted to sub-lieutenant in 1788. He became captain in 1792 and joined the «bataillon du Rhin» the same year. He then became «aide de camp» of general Scheldon in 1793 and brigadier in 1799. In December 1801, he was designated to join the Leclerc expedition to Saint-Domingue to suppress the slave revolution. He took part in the battle of Crête-à-Pierrot and was provisionally promoted to brigadier-general by Leclerc on 12th June, 1802. He was stationed in Môle Saint-Nicolas and died of yellow fever on 9 August, 1802. 

=> Jérôme Joseph Toussaint Valdony, born in Milan in 1762 in Mailand, a freemason, later moved to Poschiavo (Canton of the Grisons), and then in 1803 became Brigadier of the French expeditionary corps in Saint-Domingue under General Rochambeau. 

=> In 1797, Joseph Mansell, an «able seaman from Switzerland», took part in the bloody mutiny on the Royal Navy frigate «HMS Hermione». The 32-gun vessel had sailed to Jamaica in 1793, served in the West Indies during the early years of the French Revolutionary Wars, and participated in the British attack on Port-au-Prince in 1794.

=> Jean Baptiste Maur Ange Montanus Joseph Rodolphe Eugène Meyer de Schauensée (1765-1802) from Lucerne (central Switzerland) The patrician family had had  their seat on Castle Schauensee near Kriens LU since 1749. Maurus Meyer von Schauensee was in the service of the French, then on the side of the Revolution. Under Lafayette, he was part of the French general staff before he was transferred to overseas commands: first in the Mediterranean, then  as Chief of Staff of the French invasion troops on Saint-Domingue. He arrived in Saint-Domingue probably in February 1802 after asking for his younger brother Bernard Meinrad Fridalin Joseph Philippe Neree Jean Baptiste Meyer de Schauensée (1777–1860)to accompany himas aide-de-camp. In September 1802, he died of yellow fever, whereas his brother Bernard returned to Europe to become French brigadier general. 

=> Pierre François Joseph Amey (1768–1846) from Albeuve in the Canton of Fribourg entered French services and became lieutenant in the Swiss Regiment Châteauvieux in 1788. After a long and eventful military carreer (Army of the Rhine, Legion «Côte de la Rochelle, Alpine Legion) he accompanied General Leclerc as adjutant on his expedition to Saint-Domingue in 1802.

=> The 3rd Helvetian (Swiss) Half-Brigade had been stationed on Corsica in 1802. On account of a capitulation (treaty) with France, 635 soldiers and officers from Switzerland and other European regions (Poland, Austria, Hungary, Piemont) had to board the man-of-war «Le Redoutable» in Ajaccio on 4th February 1803, in order to reinforce the French troops fighting the rebellious slaves in Saint-Domingue. The 1st batallion of the half-brigade under the command of Captain Jean Gaspar (Hans Kaspar) Wipf from the city of Schaffhausen (N Switzerland) arrived in Port-au-Prince on 5th April 1803 and was immediately integrated into the French infantry. In the end, only 11 men survived the yellow fever and the fighting. They were taken prisoners by the British and transferred to Jamaica.

=> Jean-Frédéric Perregaux (1744–1808) from Neuchâtel was an officer in the service of the French and started his career in finance in 1765 in Paris. In 1800, he was given a seat on the board of directors of the Banque de France. In 1802, he financially supported the Leclerc expedition to reconquer Saint-Domingue from the revolutionary slaves. From 1801–1803, that expedition was also financed by the Parisian bank Hottinguer & Cie., founded by Hans Konrad (or Jean-ConradHottinger or Hottinguer (1764–1841) from Zurich, who  was also on the board of directors and had supported the French Saint-Domingue planters during the slave-uprising.

=> Maximilian Niklaus Gatschet (1782–1803) from a patrician family from Payerne and Berne was born in Frauenfeld and baptised in Berne. He‏‎ fought with the Swiss auxiliary troops against the Haitian Slave Revolution and fell. He was a cousin of Niklaus Samuel Rudolf Gatschet (1765–1840), from whom Heinrich von Kleist rented the little house on the island «Scherzliginsel» in Thun. It is likely that this was – together with his imprisonment in the Fort de Joux, where Toussaint Louverture had died – the inspiration for Kleist’s novella «Die Verlobung in St. Domingo» (Betrothal in San Domingo).

=> In 1757, Joseph Comte, aka L’Eveille, subject of the bishop of Bâle, soldier of the company de Courpon in Saint-Domingue, applied for a leave.

1.7.3 Ideologica

=> In 1803, the Swiss almanac «Le véritable messager boîteux de Berne et Vevey» published an image called «The cruelty of the negroes», which showed four black rebels besetting a white planter with knives, thus clearly apportioning blame in the ongoing Haitian revolution.

=> For Swiss glaciologist and racist Louis Agassiz (1807-1873), the Haitian Revolution was not a beacon a freedom and democracy, but the great ominous historical warning and bugbear. In a letter to his mother, he wrote in 1846: «Be not tempted by false humanity to tie the future of the white race to that of the black. Because then, the result will merely be a recurrence of the scenes of Saint-Domingue.»

=> Swiss neuroanatomist, psychiatrist and eugenicist Auguste Forel (1848–1931) reported from his trip through the Caribbean in 1878 (voyage from Jamaica to Barbados to St. Lucia) that he could no longer stand «the stench of the negroes» in his cabin and that there were a lot of «negroes and mulattoes» from Haiti on the boat, «whose childish chatter (in French) made him break out laughing.»

=> Henri de Saussure (1829-1905), Swiss mineralogist and entomologist from a prominent Geneva family, undertook a research trip through the Caribbean in 1854-1856. With admiration, he commented on the fact that the French consul had managed to make the Haitians resume their payments of the «independence ransom». The letters which he sent home (which were probably meant as the basis for a later publication) show a vicious racism and a marked euro-centricity:

«The negro has no idea what it means to fix something; he never brushes nor cleans anything; if there happens to be a hole somewhere, nobody tries to repair it – one might think that there is no remedy at all for this evil.»

«Nothing is funnier than listening to a senior official in golden galloons, how he speaks the rather limited and naïve language of the negro.»

«If you talk of a Minister or a general in Switzerland, you know what that means. Here, the former is an orang-utan, the latter a capuchin monkey.»

For other members of the de Saussure family, see «3.1 Anti-Black Racism».

1.8 Jamaica

=> 1719-1734, the city state of Berne as well as the Berne-based banking houses of «Malacrida» and «Samuel Müller» held shares in the speculative South Sea Company. With 253,000 £, Berne was the biggest single investor. The South Sea Company had slave deposits on Jamaica, and it shipped 1,230 slaves from Jamaica to America in the first year of its existence. All in all, it shipped 20,000 slaves from Africa. Those that were left in the docks of Jamaica to die were called «refuse slaves».

=> Hans Rudolf Zeller (1639-1700) and Hans Heinrich Hauser (1638-1683) from Zurich were Anglican clergymen in Jamaica. They probably owned slaves and Zeller complained about the Quakers› antislavery activities.

=> One Robert Raillard (1660–1691)‏‎ from Bâle died in Jamaica.

=> Medical doctor Jeremias Müller from Bâle owned a few slaves in Jamaica and was killed by one of them in 1670. Before Jamaica he had lived in Virginia and Brazil for 14 years.

=> Augustine Prévost (1723-1786) from Geneva was an officer in Sardinian, Dutch and British services. In 1761, he fought in the sieges of Martinique and Havana. After the Seven Years War, he was stationed in Kingston as Inspector General in the rank of a lieutenant colonel. In 1774, he was promoted to the rank of colonel.

=> Pierre Cottier from Rougement (Canton of Berne/Vaud) was a student of theology in Berne, where the government stated in 1753 that he would be admitted to the clergy on account of his propriety. However, he preferred  emigration to the Americas around 1750. He was said to have died around 1757 on an unknown plantation on Jamaica.

=> Johann Bernhard Rätzer (born 1726) was a goldsmith. He was in the English services as engineer-captain of the artillery in Jamaica. He was registered as a captain and island engineer in 1774. He may have been the same Bernhard Ratzer who was said to have been «German» and to have been recruited by the Swiss engineer James (Jacques) Prévost into the 60th American Regiment on Foot. He drew the famous «Ratzer Plan» or Map of New York City in 1769.

=> In 1785, the «Appenzeller Calender», an annual publication with astronomical and agricultural information, entertaining texts and national and international news headquartered in Trogen (Canton of Appenzell Ausserrhoden, E Switzerland), contained a lengthy «Historical Description of Kingtston, a city in America – in letters». The author, possibly from Lower Saxony in Germany, is rather put off by the wealth and splendor of the colonists and gives a critical rendering of a slave market, organized after the arrival of a French slaver with 550 «humans» from the Guinea Coast. He concludes that the colonists all die young on account of their unhealthy lifestyles and wishes he were home again, eating potatoes rather than pineapples.

=> Of the 635 soldiers and officers from Switzerland and other European countries who fought in Saint-Domingue in 1803 to put down the slave revolution, only about 11 survived. Some of them were taken prisoners of war by the British and transferred to Jamaica: Captain Albert Deflue, Sub-lieutenant Leonard Tremp, and Sub-lieutenant Frederic Rutz.

=> Caspar Landolt von Oehrlingen from the Canton of Zurich entered the British Regiment of York Light Infantry Volunteers stationed in Jamaica. His death there was reported in 1817. Johannes Meister from Andelfingen (also Canton of Zurich) had also served in that regiment.

=> Captain Louis Correvont was – according to the diaries of Lady Maria Nugent (1771?-1834) «an old officer and a Swiss by birth», possibly from Yverdon in the Canton of Berne/Vaud. In Jamaica, he served in the 3rd West India Regiment. He was first recorded in 1781 (as ensign), then in 1782 (as lieutenant) and then again in 1793 (on half pay). In 1783, he married Elizabeth Rennalls (1765 – 1817), whose father was a merchant and factor. Louis Correvont owned the coffee plantation Orange Grove in the County of Middlesex (Parish St. Catherine), north of Spanishtown. In 1809, after his death, the «estate of Lewis Correvont» was recorded with 60, in 1811 with 35, in 1812 with 34, in 1816 with 50 («heirs of Louis Correvont») and in 1818 with 60 slaves. In 1820, one John Powell Correvont (1786-1837), Louis‹ eldest son, was recorded as joint owner of 37 slaves with Mary Elizabeth Hocker, his sister. He was a captain and a plantation and slaveowner. In 1822, he was recorded as the sole owner of the plantationLater recordings: 1823 (38 slaves), 1824 (52), 1826/1827/1828 (42), 1829 (43), 1830 (39), 1831(36), 1832 (40). On 15th February 1836, John Powell Correvont was compensated for his 35 plantation slaves with the sum of £713 3s 0d and for his four house slaves with £106 8s 11d. 

=> John Campbell, 2nd Marquess of Breadalbane (1796–1862), Scottish nobleman, Liberal politician, and Rector of Glasgow University 1840–1842, was awarded compensation of £6,630 for 379 enslaved people on his family’s Hope estate in St Andrew, Jamaica, on 25 July 1836. He died in Lausanne, Switzerland.

=> Henri de Saussure from Geneva (see 1.5.3) took a trip to Jamaica in 1854. On the boat, he made the acquaintance of a planter from Cuba, who owned 300 slaves. De Saussure thought him «a great and good-natured guy». In Cuba, de Saussure commented on Jamaica and Haiti:

=> Auguste Forel (1848–1931) from Morges in the Canton of Vaud (see 1.5.3) commented on Jamaica during his trip through the Caribbean in 1878: «Order on the island is exemplary, at least externally. But inside, the Negroes are hardly any better than anywhere else.»

=> When the racist «scientist» Charles Davenport (1866-1944) in his book Race Crossing in Jamaica (1929) tried to prove that «…Whites are relatively swift and accurate, the Blacks are slow but accurate, while the Browns are slow and inaccurate…», he based himself on the authority of Louis Agassiz (1807-1783) from Môtier (Canton of Fribourg, NW Switzerland). The Swiss professor of zoology and geology at Harvard had advocated the same theories of the purportedly fatal consequences of racial mixing in A Journey in Brazil (1868). Davenport in his turn was used as an authority by the Nazi racial hygienists and quoted extensively in their 1936 standard work Menschliche Erblehre und Rassenhygiene (Baur, Fischer, Lenz, 1936).

=> English abolitionist George Thompson (1804-1878), in his three lectures on British and colonial slavery, had this to say on the 1832 slave revolt in Jamaica:

«How do we speak of individuals struggling for liberty all over the world? – of a Tell in Switzerland, – a Byron in Greece, – a Bolivar in Mexico, –a Brutus at Rome, – a Lafayette at Paris? And let me remember, before we answer this question, that the rebels of Jamaica were more enslaved, more brutalised, –had more insults and wrongs to complain of, and were a million times more oppressed than ever were the Swiss, the Greeks, the Mexicans, the Romans, or the French. (Great applaus)»

1.9 Montserrat

=> From 1772 to 1796, Peter Thelluson (1737-1797), a Swiss banker, entrepreneur and slave-owner from Geneva, owned a share in Windmill Estate in Montserrat.

1.10 St. Vincent & The Grenadines

=> David de Duveluz, from Bournens in the Canton of Berne/Vaud, living in London, creditor of Patrick Wilkie, to whom he sold two plantations on the island of Saint-Vincent in 1780.

=> David de Duveluz (1725–1808) from Bourmens, Canton of Berne/Vaud, was living in London as a merchant and was registered in 1780 as creditor to Patrick Wilkie with 10’000 £, to whom he therefore sold two sugar plantations called Ratho Mill and Brebner (around 20 slaves) on the island of St. Vincent.

1.11 Suriname

For the chapter on Suriname, I owe a great deal to the profound knowledge and the persistent research activities of Dr. Klaus Stuckert, researcher and former lecturer on Caribbean literature (Wetzikon ZH, Switzerland).

=> Maria Sibylla Merian (1647-1717), from the original Bâle branch of her family, left a few critical remarks on slavery during her stay in Suriname (1699-1701) in her work Metamorphosis insectorum Surinamensium. However, she never questioned slavery as such, and used indigenous and African slaves for her research and expeditions. She herself enslaved an indigenous woman during her voyage back to Holland in order to obtain first-hand botanical information. The details of this indigenous woman’s life beyond her servile captivity on the journey to Amsterdam were not documented by Merian and are therefore unknown.

=> Marx Friedrich Högger (b. 1733) from St.Gallen died in Suriname. In 1771, he married ‏‎Katharina Spruyt‏‎ in Amsterdam. They had one son, Jeremias Högger (b. 1773 in Amsterdam).

=> One Charles Crousaz from a patrician family from Lutry (Canton of Berne/Vaud, W Switzerland) served the Queen of Hungary as a distinguished officer, then entered the services of the Dutch and in 1750, as General von Sparke’s general adjutant and as lieutenant colonel of his regiment, he sailed to Suriname.

=> Frédéric-Louis Allamand 
(1736–1803) from Payerne in the Canton of Berne / Vaud was a son of François-Benjamin Allamand and Marie Madeleine de Treytorrens. ​In 1749, he moved to Holland, where his uncle was professor of philosophy in Leiden. In 1753, he graduated as a medical doctor, and in 1760 he became a marine surgeon in the Dutch navy. He travelled to Suriname and Guyana, published a study on syphilis (which was thought by some to have originated in the West Indies) in 1770 and described a number of of new plant species he had discovered in the Dutch West Indies.  Later he became a doctor at the court of Catherine II in Saint-Petersburg and returned to Leiden in 1793.

=> Land surveyor François-Louis-Frédéric Bermont (1745 – after 1784) and Pierre-Antoine Bermont’s brother, members of a Huguenot family from Echallens (Canton of Vaud), died in Paramaribo (Suriname) in Dutch service in 1752 and 1751 respectively. In 1751, a command under Lieutenant Colonel Bermont departed to complete the Rama-Saramacca road. Lieutenant Colonel Bermont is mentioned with engineering work («Oranje Weg») with the help of 20 slaves.

=> Johann Heinrich (Jan Hendrik) Hottinger (1751– 1823) from Zurich became a military engineer and cartographer in the service of the Dutch in 1777 and a captain in 1788. He sojourned in Suriname from November 1786 to March 1787 and made several maps, especially of the Comewyne and the Suriname River. He went on to Curaçao the same year and depicted the fortifications of Willemstad, and he also worked on Sint Eustatius. He retired from Dutch service in 1795 to enter the service of the British, but he must have returned in the service of the Kingdom of The Netherlands in 1814, where he retired with the rank of Major General in July 1817.

=> According to a 1756 work contract, Johan Casper Roost from Beringen in the Canton of Schaffhausen (Switzerland), travelling free of passage to Suriname with a ship yet to be designated, was to serve for a period of six years as surgeon on the plantations Eyland (2500 acres, sugar, on Paulus Creek), Peperpot (Commewijne district, sugar, cocoa, then coffee, 51 slaves at emancipation, neighbouring plantation of La Liberté) and Beaumont (4000 acres, sugar). These plantations all belonged to Carel Baron van Essen tot Helbergen, an absentee landowner.

=> Daniël Roguin (1691–1771) from a ptrician family from Yverdon in the Canton of Berne / Vaud lived in Suriname for several years at the service of the Dutch army, before establishing himself in 1742 as a banker in Paris. From the same family came Auguste Roguin (1768–1827), who was associated with his uncle Louis d’Illens in Marseille and became part of «D’Illensvan Berchem, Roguin et Cie.», a company active in the slave-trade.    

=> In 1770, Judith Coin from Echallens in the Canton of Berne/Vaud (W Switzerland), widow of Vulle Nuhouser, inherited 1000 Dutch guilder from the property of her husband in Suriname.

=> In 1784, Théophilus Cazenove (1740–1811) from a Huguenot Geneva family, son of Théophile Cazenove (1708–1760), was registered as the owner of plantation St Domingo (375 acres) in Suriname. It once belonged to Volkert van Jever (1706-1774), his father-in-law. In 1827, it was just a «houtgrond» and without owner.

=> In the 1790s, Bernhardin Peyer from the Canton of Schaffhausen (N Switzerland), mercenary captain in the service of the Dutch in Suriname, died in Paramaribo. An agreement was reached over his heritage between the families Peyer and von Waldkirch. Two members of the latter, Franz (1771-1813) and Johann Conrad von Waldkirch (1784-1805) from Schaffhausen, were colonists in Surinam. One Johann Heinrich von Waldkirch was in the service of the Dutch Westindian Company and died in Suriname in 1789. One Johannes von Waldkirch from Schaffhausen died in Suriname in 1788.

=> Philippe de Chambrier (1701-1756) from Neuchâtel (NW Switzerland), chief engineer in the rank of a lieutenant-colonel, was given command of the Dutch colony of Suriname in 1742.

=> In 1859, Swiss chocolate factory Maestrani (St.Gallen, E Switzerland) imported cocoa beans from Suriname, where slavery was abolished as late as 1863.

=> François-Marc de Treytorrens, cousin of David-Philippe de Treytorrens, owned the sugar plantation Goed Accoord on the Boven-Commewijne River in Suriname. In 1737, the 3500 acre sugar plantation was registered as belonging to the widow Treytorrens.

=> An uncle of Auguste-Frédéric de Meuron’s (1789-1852) from Neuchâtel was a merchant in Suriname.

=> Gabriel Gottlieb Jakob Furer (1825–1866)‏‎ from Obersimmental in the Canton of Berne died in Paramaribo. He had been a merchant and a missionary.

=> In 1747, the governor of Suriname, Johan Jacob Mauricius (1692-1768), launched a project of German and Swiss settlers to colonise the territory. In Switzerland, the city of Bâle was chosen for recruitment and the colonists were promised 10 slaves per family. In 1748, ten families or 93 people from Bâle set out for Suriname, but the project by Louis de Bussy, who was a physician from Switzerland in Paramaribo, was a failure and many of the emigrants, who had to create a village called «Carolinenburg», succumbed to maroon attacks or tropical diseases. An 1807 map of Suriname (Christlieb Quandt, Nachricht von Suriname und seinen Einwohnern sonderlich den Arawacken, Warauen und Karaiben, … Goerlitz, 1807) still shows five «Schweizer Dörfer» (Swiss villages) between Carolinenburg on the Suriname River and Post «7 Provinces» on the Saramaka. River.

=> Beat Ludwig Braun of Berne took part in all the expeditions in the West Indies from 1738–1744 under the British Admiral Edward Vernon (1684-1757). This took place in the context of the War of Jenkins› Ear (known as Guerra del Asiento), which was a conflict between Britain and Spain over the lucrative slave-trading contracts with the South Sea Company. The campaigns in which Beat Ludwig Braun took part included landing at Port Royal, the British fleets stronghold on Jamaica, the capture of Porto Bello (Panama), the assault on Cartagena de las Indias, and the capture of Guantánamo Bay on Cuba. From 1750-1757, Braun was in Suriname.

=> Nicolas Laurent Robatel (±1751-1817) from Noréaz in the Canton of Fribourg was commander in Paramaribo (Suriname) in the rank of a colonel in the Dutch corps of engineers. He was first married to Elisabeth Dandiran, daughter of David François Dandiran from Geneva (see below).

=> In 1774, Abraham Moiseszoon Perret-Gentil (1747–1824) from Le Locle in the Canton of Neuchâtel (then part of Prussia) joined the Dutch military, became captain of the marine regiment Bentinck and soon left for Suriname. He got married in 1776 in Paramaribo. In 1793, he took over the command of the garrison of Curaçao. In 1797, he was stationed in Saint Domingue for a short time, probably because the Dutch cooperated with the French. At the end of his career, he was brigadier general of the French army. He died in Lyon.

=> Abraham Moiseszoon Perret-Gentil’s son Claude François Frederic Perret-Gentil (1777-1818) was an officier on Curaçao from 1796 on and became the founding father of the Curaçao branch of the Perret-Gentil family.

=> In 1772, the Dutch lost control over the rebellious maroons after a four-year war. In 1773, Holland sent an armada with 800 men under the command of Colonel Louis Henri Fourgeoud (1708-1779) from Bussigny-près-Lausanne (Canton of Berne/Vaud, W Switzerland) to put down the rebellion. They fought until 1777.

=> In 1775, Swiss captain Meylan from the Vallée de Joux (Canton of Berne/Vaud) led a military patrol against the village of Gabo Saby, which was under the command of Boni, the leader of black resistance in Suriname.

=> In 1777, the «Appenzeller Calender», an annual publication with astronomical and agricultural information, entertaining texts and national and international news headquartered in Trogen (Canton of Appenzell Ausserrhoden, E Switzerland), contained a lengthy description of slavery and the slave trade, including information on the triangular trade, investments, living conditions in the West Indies, plantation life expectancy and slave prices in Brazil, Suriname and at the Cape of Good Hope. The «Appenzeller Calender» had been founded by Johannes Tobler from Rehetobel, who in 1736 had emigrated to the Carolinas to become a slave-owner himself. Tobler remained co-editor until 1754. Tobler’s wife Anna died in New Windsor in 1768, but at least eight of their children went on to establish a lineage in the area and several of his descendants remain.

=> During the continental blockade, a large-scale embargo against British trade decreed by Napoleon and valid for Switzerland, too, the Zurich authorities in 1810 published a list of colonial goods which would be subject to this embargo. among them were: long-fibre cotton from Brazil, Guyana, Suriname and Demerara, cotton from the Levant imported across the sea and imported overland.

=> In 1810, the cantonal authorities of Zurich dealt with a number of complaints from local trading houses on account of the conflict between France and Britain («continental blockade») which led to sequestrations. The goods concerned were, among others, long fiber cotton from Suriname.

=> In his letters, plantation administrator Marc Warnery (1797-1836) from Morges in the Canton of Vaud (see below), mentions a tightly-knit network of Swiss countrymen and -women in the colony of Suriname: Edouard Caliste Cusin (surgeon, member of the court on St. Eustacius 1835–1837, † 1838), the Guignards (Antoine, carpenter, and his wife Charlotte from Payerne VD), the Guigaud family, one Frédéric from Lugano in the Canton of Ticino (captain of an army division), Mr. Jacot from La Chaux-de-Fonds (watchmaker), Mr. Meyer from Aubonne VD (first apothecary, then surgeon), Mr. Perret-Gentil (colonial administrator) and the Bertoud family (with Mr. Berthoud, a cousin of one of the Guigauds, a merchant and plantation owner in Paramaribo, see below).

=> In 1837, Johann Rudolf Passavant from Basel, superintendant of the Moravian mission in Suriname since 1829, reported that slaves in Suriname had become restless because they had heard about slavery emancipation in the British colonies of 1834. At the same time, he was relieved that the slaves did not understand English. The Moravians› missionary principles towards the slaves was expressed in 1850 like this: «We do not want to liberate the slaves, who were entrusted to us, from their status nor do we want to make them restless, but our aim is the opposite, which is that they should become more useful, happier and more satisfied with their status determined by God.» In 1836, according to a slave register, Passavant bought two male slaves, Charles and Candase, from Baron van Heeckeren, the governor of Suriname, and sold them again the same day. After the slave rebellion in the Nickerie in 1837, Passavant reported having been asked by the governor to accompany the expedition of 36 troops and 10 «criminals» back to their plantations to teach all the slaves on those plantations to forget «the false worship by which they were seduced» and to teach them the true gospel. Passavant had in vain tried to convert the leader of the rebellion on several visits in prison. In 1844, a mulatto called John Claver stated before a British Judge in a mixed court in Surinam that he had been the slave of Mr. Passavant, who had left him to be sold by the other missionaries when he left the colony.

=> In 1850, Johann Ludwig Gutmann from the Canton of Zurich, was in the service of the 27th Battalion of Infantry stationed in Paramaribo.

=> Between 1791 and 1796, mercenary Captain Bernhardin Peyer from the Canton of Schaffhausen died in Paramaribo.

=> Pierre François Rod (born 1759) from Ropraz (Canton of Berne/Vaud) lived in Paramaribo, was noted in 1792 as «lieutenant» and married one Johanna Henrietta in 1797. Her father Carel Casimir Kleijnhans had owned the plantation Elisabethshoop on the Commewijne River (in Sranan Tongo called Kreinhansi), where he died in 1786. In 1793, Rod was registered in the military defense system of the colony as a sous-lieutenant and adjutant in the «Lyf Gompagnie Letter A» of the First Infantry Bataillon.

=> In 1846, a settlement was reached between the siblings Sophia and Emil Paravicini from the Canton of Zurich concerning the properties in Surinam of their brother Major General Paravicini.

=> Simon le Chevalier de Rochefort came from a noble Neuchâtel family. He was an officer in the service of the Prince of Orange and Nassau, and a captain in the Regiment Chambrier. His nephews were Jean-François le Chevalier de Rochefort (born in Amsterdam 1770) and his brother Rodolphe le Chevalier de Rochefort (1777-1865). Together these made a fortune by creating a merchant house in Amsterdam and by importing sugar. Rodolphe worked his way up to the head of the trading house «J.J. Poncelet & Son», which also operated some ships as a shipping company. «J.J. Poncelet & Son» mainly did business with Central and South America, specifically with Suriname, where in 1793, they or a fund under J.J. Poncelet owned plantations Elisabeths Hoop on the Commewyne, Vlaardingen on the Cottica and Katharinenburg on Cabbes Creek. In 1801, Rodolphe married Jeanne Poncelet (1770–1844), daughter of his boss Jean Jacques Poncelet. Thus, after the death of his father-in-law, Rodolphe became owner of a number of plantations, among them Elisabeth’s Hoop. In 1819, «J.J. Poncelet & Son» owned plantation Spieringszorg (650 acres, coffe & cotton), and in 1820 plantations Aarendsrust (1200 acres, sugar), Nieuw-Weergevouden (1000 acres, sugar), Lugtenberg (coffee), Spieringszorg (650 acres, cotton), Liefdenshoek (1000 acres, coffee), and Jacobusdaal (500 acres, cotton). In 1829, Rodolphe le Chevalier de Rochefort became chairman of the «Koninklijk College Zeemanshoop» in Amsterdam, founded in 1821on the initiative of some 18 merchant navy captains. In 1837, he was co-founder of the Dutch Railway Company (HIJSM).

=> In 1770, Louis Vullijamozah bought plantation Smalkalden in Suriname, which was located close to Accaribo (in Swiss hands at that time), and renamed it Saint Saphorin. The director of the 300 acres plantation, which produced coffee with 62 slaves, was Louis Perret. Saint Saphorin is a village in the Vevey/La Tour de Peilz area of the Canton of Berne/Vaud, and the name Vullijamozah (also spelt Vuillamoz or Vouillamoz) is found in that region of Switzerland. However, it remains to be established whether the 1770 owner and/or director of Saint Saphorin had a Swiss background. In 1784, one J.J. Polak was registered as owner.

=> In 1720, Isaac Tourton (1678-1742) from a Geneva family, brother of Jean André Tourton(1676–1759) and son of Amsterdam banker Jean Tourton (1649–1702), was the owner of plantation Nieuwzorg. After a plan to build a new large fort at the confluence of the Suriname and Commewijne Rivers was discarded by the governor and council of Suriname, they instead invited Isaac Tourton to make a design for a fort to replace Zeelandia. Tourton submitted a project of an entirely new fort in 1710 and an improved version in 1712, but this idea only took shape after a French expedition under captain Jacques Cassard invaded Surinam in 1712 in the context of the War of the Spanish Succession. It was not until 1734 that Isaac Tourton managed to get his hands on the construction of Fort Nieuw Amsterdam. For its construction, a workforce of 40 slaves were used in 1734, and 150 in 1735.

=> Plantation owners, co-owners, administrators or directors in Suriname with Swiss backgrounds:

• In 1700, Pieter Miville from Switzerland (possibly from Basel) came to Suriname as a carpenter. In 1714, he started the plantation Salzhalen on Commetewanekreek. It had only few slaves. He got married to Maria Jansz in the same year. His wife was a mulatto and a slave from Saint Nevis and had been manumitted in 1713. She was the half-sister of the famous Afro-Surinamese coffee plantation owner Elisabeth Samson (1715—1771). Pieter Miville died in a slave rising, and Salzhalen later became an important coffee plantation. It bordered on the sugar plantation Hoyland (see Faesch family).

• Plantation Accaribo was bought by father Jean and son Pierre Chevalier at the end of the 17th century. Plantation La Liberté was started by Pierre Chevalier. Both plantations remained in the hands of the Chevalier family and their heirs until 1770. Jacques Christoffel Baron Hogguer (1697-1738) from a St.Gallen family, son of Daniel Hogger und Salomé Rietmann (owners of plantation Helvetia in Berbice) had married Sara Chevalier (1701–1750), Pierre Chevalier’s daughter, in Amsterdam and thus became co-owner of La Liberté through his wife, who owned 1/8 of the plantation and probably inherited another 1/8 after the death of her mother. When his widow Sara Hogguer-Chevalier died in 1750, their son Daniël Vrijheer Hogguer Graaf van Bignan (1732-1793) became co-owner of plantation La Liberté. Around 1770, Nicolas David Guisan (appr. 1727-1781, in Suriname since 1759) from the Canton of Berne/Vaud and clergyman Amédée Jaques Sugnens (1737-1773) from Moudon (Canton of Berne/Vaud, W Switzerland) bought one half each of the sugar plantations Accaribo and La Liberté and of Leliendaal (coffee, 1000 acres, 187 slaves). One Francois George Tschiffely (Chifféli/Cheffelli) from La Neuveville (Canton of Berne) had been director of plantation La Liberté since 1748. Under Guisan and Sugnens, he became the main administrator of all three plantations. He had taught Jean Samuel Guisan (1740–1801) from Avenches (Canton of Berne/Vaud), who later made a career in Cayenne, how to administer a plantation. In 1781, Nicolas David Guisan and Rosa Du Toit-SugnensAmédéé’s sister, each owned half of Leliëndaal and La Liberté. In his last will of 1781, Nicolas David Guisan decreed that a certain Nanetta Gerarda (ca. 1771-1852), whom he recognized as his legitimate daughter, was to be freed. She was probably the child of a liaison with a slave called Johanna la Liberté, his «housekeeper». Abraham Moiseszoon Perret-Gentil (1747 – 1824) and Elisabeth Jacoba Lijnslager (1744 – 1804) became Nanetta’s foster parents. In 1797, Nanetta married Gerrit van der Kolk in Amsterdam.

• Women were able to participate in slavery and colonial affairs just like men: Merchant Sara Chevalier (1701–1750) combined different activities. She was born in Paramaribo and in 1738 became the widow of the immigrant merchant Jacques Christoffel Hogguer. She held an account in the Wisselbank from at least 1742 until 1767 (it may have passed to her heirs). She was engaged in many different types of businesses over these years. She ran several plantations in the Dutch West Indies and as a consequence also engaged in the slave trade in Africa. She engaged in the Mediterranean trade (including to Genoa, Cartagena and Marseilles), and dealt with merchants and bankers in Bordeaux and London.

• In 1793, sugar plantation L’Espérance on the Suriname River (opposite plantation Palmeneribo in the hands of the Faesch family) was noted as being the property of P.D. Jenatsch and C.S. de Sausyn (who inherited the plantation via his wife). P.D. Jenatsch was Colonel Paul «Paulus» Jenatsch III aka de Jenatsch (1725–1791), born in Davos, from a Grisons (Canton Graubünden) family, which originally came from Samedan in the Upper Engadine Valley and which in the 18th century provided many officers for the Dutch, Genovese and Venetian armies. In 1759, at the time of his marriage to Marie Huijghens (born 1738), Paul Jenatsch served as captain-lieutenant in the Grisons regiment of Swiss Baron Heinrich Sprecher von BerneggJenatsch’s wife Marie Huygens was the grand-daughter of Johan de Coetier, Governor of Suriname 1718–1721, who was the first owner of L’Espérance. In 1774, a document in Holland recorded Jenatsch’s power of attorney concerning a plantation in Suriname, probably L’Espérance. In 1775 Paul de Jenatsch was captain in the Grisons Regiment of Major General Johann Christoph Friedrich Schmidt. In 1784, Jenatsch is first recorded as owner of L’Espérance. Through Jenatsch’s daughter Mary Magdalene de Jenatsch (1762–1839), the plantation L’Espérance passed into the hands of Scotttish husband Colin Dundas Graham KW. In 1821, L’Espérance was registered as a plantation of 2000 acres and 157 slaves.

• In 1753, Jacques Roux (1717-1780) from a Lausanne Huguenot family (Canton of Berne/Vaud), arrived in Paramaribo. In 1757, he became «Raad van Politie en Crimineele Justitie», i.e. part of the colonial administration, and in 1758 he was co-administrator of the plantations Roosenburgand Mon Bijou.On Tapoeripakreek, he established the plantation Lausanne,and with François Louis Chaillet from Neuchâtel he co-owned the estate Boniface outside Paramaribo, of which he later became the sole proprietor. In 1759, he married Anna Kennedy-Arnout (1723-1770), owner of the coffee plantation Visserszorg.Were present at the wedding: Gouvernor Crommelin and his wife, as well as David Francois Dandiran, plantation owner from Geneva. After the death of his wife in 1770, Roux married Elisabeth Dandiran (1751-1800), daughter of David François Dandiran from Geneva. In 1772, their son Jacques François was born, and the baptism performed by Minister Heinrich Grob from Zurich saw the presence of church elder Nicolas David Guisan (appr. 1727-1781), plantation owner, administrator, and plantation-valuer for Clifford & Chevalier from a Swiss family from the Canton of Berne/Vaud. When Roux died in 1780, plantation Visserszorgwas registered with 328 slaves. In 1787 Elisabeth Roux-Dandiran married Nicolas Laurent Robatel (±1751-1817) from Noréaz in the Canton of Fribourg, commander in Paramaribo in the rank of a colonel in the Dutch corps of engineers. The couple now (co-)owned the four plantations VisserszorgLausanneRouxgift and Beaulieu. In 1793, widow Roux was registered as co-owner of Beaulieu on the Para Creek. In 1821, Henry Louis Perret-Gentil (1779–1824) figured as administrator of the combined plantation of VisserszorgLausanneRouxgift , and as late as 1850, a member of the Roux family was still registered as co-administrator of Visserszorg,now a sugar plantation with some 300 slaves. When Elisabeth Robatel died, Nicolas Laurent Robatel married Rijnhardina Maria Elisabeth Meurs (1766-1833) in Suriname, and the two moved to Holland after 1800. In 1843, Visserszorg (1000 acres, sugar, 270 slaves) is registered as being co-administrated by Jacques François Roux, probably a grandson of Jacques Roux. In 1859, 311 slaves were registered. 

• Abraham Moiseszoon Perret-Gentil’s son Henry Louis Perret-Gentil (1779–1824) became owner of the following plantations: Dageraad on the Commewijne (sugar, 3600 acres), La Persévérance on the Paramarica (coffee, 1200 acres), Lust en Rust on the Suriname River (coffee, 800 acres); he also became administrator of the plantations Visserszorg(500 acres, coffee until 1792, sugar afterwards, 150 slaves in 1758, into which Lausanne and Rouxgift had been integrated) on the Commewijne (sugar, 1000 acres, 260 slaves), Resolutie on the Jonkermannskreek (sugar, 1500 acres), De Resolutie on the Suriname River (sugar, 1500 acres), Standvastighheid on the Tapoeripakreek (cotton, 810 acres), Stolkwijk on the Motkreek (coffee and cotton, 300 acres), Zeewyk on the Motkreek (cotton, 790 acres), Dageraad and Dankbaarheid(cotton, together 1100 acres), Libanonon the Cottica (sugar 1800 acres, 81 slaves in 1834), and Jonge Beyekorf (coffee). He was also a member of the colonial administration («Hof van Policie en Krimineel Justitie») and 1819–1824 commander of the Paramaribo militia in the rank of a lieutenant-colonel. He died on a trip to Europe in Den Haag.

Nicolas David Guisan (appr. 1730-1781) from the Canton of Berne/Vaud, together with François Louis Chaillet from Neuchâtel, was administrator of the sugar plantation Le Mat-Rouge on Perica Creek (2,500 acres, 110 slaves). In 1770, he was in Amsterdam where two documents register the acquisition of coffee plantation Leliendaal, and his will is dated 16 October. When he returned to Suriname, he took his nephew Jean Samuel with him, and they arrived in January 1771. Nicolas David Guisan also administered for «Clifford & Chevalier» the plantations Le Mat-Rouge on the Perica, Mijn Geluk on the Orleane, La Nouvelle Esperance on the Cottica, and Groot-Chattillon on the Suriname River. In 1772, Nicolas Guisan, together with E. J. Chaillet-Leijnslager, was administrator of the coffee plantations Perou (890 acres, 158 slaves) and Va comme je te pousse (1000 acres, 113 slaves), and of the sugar plantation Libanon (1500 acres, 161 slaves), all three on the Cottica River. In 1781 Nicolas Guisan and Rosa Du Toit-Sugnens, Amédéé Jacques Sugnens‹ sister, owned half of the property.

Jan Daniel Bartholomey was born in 1748 in Neuchâtel (Switzerland). In 1775, he married Anna Catharina Mardorff in Suriname. The Sranan Tongo plantation name Batrome (for Leyderdorp) is derived from his name. In 1793, he was administrator of the following plantations: Charlottenburg (coffee) on the Cottica, Catharinenburg (sugar) on the Cabbes Kreek, Nimmer door on the Commewijne, Des Tombesburg (sugar, 1800 acres, 188 slaves in 1770) on the Boven-Commewijne, Vlaardingen on the Cottica and Weltevreeden on the Commewijne.

• In 1823, Marc Warnery (1797-1836) from Morges in the Canton of Vaud, sailed to Suriname, where he first became an overseer («blanc-officier») on Beekhuizen and on the sugar plantation Tout-lui-Faut (200 slaves) and later an itinerant administrator of the plantations Goede Vreede (sugar), Kleinslust (coffee), Boksweide (sugar), Hazard (sugar), and Djikveld (sugar). Accompanying him on his trip to Suriname was a carpenter called Guignard from Aubonne in the Canton of Vaud, who also became a slave-owner. In 1833, Warnery had this to say about the execution of a slave accused of rebellion: «This sentence, which will appear frightful to all civilized people, is necessary here, when one considers how few in number we white people are, and that we are dealing with beings without instruction, almost brutes, for whom any sentiment in the soul is unknown and who respond only to physical pain. The goal was to make an impression on the multitude [of slaves].»

• In 1848, 2/45 of the coffee-plantation Sorgvliet (1000 acres, 93 slaves) on the Commewijne River were in the hands of one Frederique (Frederica) de Paravicini. At emancipation in 1863, she owned the whole plantation together with a community of owners, among them three members of the Brazil branch of the Paravicini family. They received over 23,000.- guilder in compensation for 77 slaves. The Paravicini family were a noble family with branches in the Cantons of Grisons, Glarus and Bâle. Family members were found in the mercenary service of Holland and France. As early as 1692, a «Freikompagnie» (a non-official unit) from the Canton of Glarus was in the service of Holland under the command of a member of the Paravicini family.

Moïse Tissot from Geneva owned a sugar plantation, which on his death in 1692 went to his mother, who lived in Vuillerens (Canton of Berne/Vaud, W Switzerland). Later, François Fatio (1622–1704) of the merchant banking company «Fatio & fils» from Geneva acquired three thirds of the plantation. It was inherited by Jean-Baptiste Fatio after his father’s death. In 1693 there was a litigation over the heritage involving Isaac de Mestral and Gabriel Henri de Mestral (1670-1753) from the Canton of Berne/Vaud. However, the supreme court in Bern deemed Francois Fatio & Son the rightful owners of the two plantations. Fatio & Son – with the aid of Jean Tourton – were able to hold on to the estates.

• In 1688, coming from Suriname, Abel Tissot from the vicinity of Mollens in the Canton of Berne / Vaud appeared off the coast of Tobago and, with an armed band, tried to wrench the island away from the British together with what was left of the original Dutch settlers. Lieutenant Tissot became a member of the colonial administration («raad van policie») and 1677–1678 acting governor of Suriname. In 1681, he was involved in a business transaction concerning 2624 pounds of sugar. Abel Tissot died in Suriname. In 1710, the Bernese government requested its ambassador to Holland, Saint Saphorin, to make inquiries concerning the valuable estate of Abel Tissot (Thysso). In 1711, the Canton of Berne turned to the government of the Netherlands concerning the legacy of Abel and Moïse Tissot. The respective Amsterdam documents also mention an Amsterdam merchant called Jieronymus Huntziger (born 1692 in Aarau).

Vriendsbeleid en Ouderzorg was a coffee plantation on the Commewijne River in Suriname. It was founded by Abraham Vereul, who came to Suriname in 1714 via Rouen. In 1716 he married Elisabeth Felix, who originally came from Aarau (Canton of Berne/Aargau) in Switzerland.

• In the years of emancipation 1863, the company of Pieter Anthony Charbon and his brother Jan Adam Charbon owned the sugar plantation Hamburg on the Beneden-Saramacca River in Suriname with 139 enslaved people. They received compensation when the enslaved were set free in 1863.

• In the middle of the 18th century, David François Dandiran (…1774) from Geneva started the coffee plantation Nooytgedacht (later renamed Ellen) on the Cottica River. He also owned the sugar plantation Guineesche Vriendschap on the Suriname River and the plantation Beekvliet on the Cottica. He was a captain in the citizens› militia, served in the criminal justice system, and represented the trading company «Jan van der Poll» from Amsterdam. When he died, his plantations were bought by Jean André Tourton from a Geneva family.

• In 1770, François Louis Chaillet from Neuchâtel owned the sugar plantation Rosenburg on the Boven Commewijne Rivier in the Paramaribo area with some 170 slaves. In 1771, he also owned half of the plantation Libanon (capital 150,000 guilders).

Jean-Zacharie Robin from Geneva owned a coffee and cotton plantation called La Campagne. In 1779, he handed over its administration to a lawyer in Paramaribo and returned to Geneva. On his death in 1783, the plantation passed to his son Chrétien-André, who appointed Charles Pache from Morges (Canton of Berne/Vaud) as administrator. One André-Dominique Robin was born in Paramaribo in 1810 and died in Geneva in 1871. While in Suriname, he was a judicial counselor. La Campagne remained in the hands of the Robin family and their heirs until at least 1847.

Alfred Jacques Henri Berthoud (1802-1887) from a noble Neuchâtel family (NW Switzerland) settled in Suriname as a merchant and shopkeeper in 1821. He bought and administered coffee, sugar and cotton plantations including their slaves. He was married to Charlotte Christiana Esther Weissenbruch (died 1833), daughter of Carl Ludwig Weissenbruch, who administered 62 Suriname plantations. Berthoud entered into business relations with the Weissenbruch family, whose fortune had been estimated by Marc Warnery at 10 million guilders. Thus, Berthoud became co-administrator of Ornamibo, Munchenstein, Le Prospérité, Meyndershoop, Killenstein, Nieuw Welgelegen (on the Surnauskreek), and Ma Retraite (on the Parakreek). In 1833, Berthoud requested from the governor to have the plantation slaves Rosalina and Betje with son Alfred (!) to be henceforth declared house slaves, which means that Berthoud had a son with an enslaved woman. In 1834, Berthoud bought the plantation Rees en Crop (750 acres, on the Tapoeripa, next to Berthoudslust), and sold the plantation Bosseeslust (on the Matappica). In 1835, Berthoud returned to Switzerland, but remained an absentee landlord. In 1838, he married Anne-Louise Coulon (1817-1911), whose grandfather had owned, together with Jacques Louis Pourtalès and Johann Jakob Thurneysen, large plantations on Grenada. In 1839, Berthoud owned: 1/3 of La Prosperité (161 slaves, 3200 acres, wood), Kleinslust (ownership since 1830, 400 acres, coffee & cotton & sugar), Livorno (155 slaves, 1800 acres, sugar), Killenstein (104 slaves, 725 acres, coffee), Boksweide (ownership in 1830, 213 slaves, 900 acres, coffee & sugar), Bertaud’s Lust (the merged plantations Kleinslust and Boksweide, 213 slaves, 903 acres, sugar), 1/3 of Meyndershoop (1000 acres, wood), Rees en Corp (10 slaves, 1000 acres), and 1/3 of Ornamibo (202 slaves, 669 acres, sugar). In 1840, Berthoud returned to Suriname for a year in order to sell his property. He visited Killenstein, Berthoudslust, and Ornamibo in order to collect specimens of the local fauna and flora for the collections of Louis Agassiz in Neuchâtel. In 1841, he requested the manumission of Betje and her son Alfred, and of another slave called Leentje. In 1841, he left the colony on board the «Jonge Lodewyk Antonie», with a load of sugar and cotton. Back in Switzerland, he concentrated on his commercial activities in Paris, Frankfurt, and Amsterdam, and on the finances of the city of Neuchâtel. Berthoud’s son, Alphonse Henri Berthoud-Coulon (1839–1913), became a banker in London and in 1879 bought the castle of Gorgier (Canton of Neuchâtel), which had once belonged to the de Pourtalès family.

• Charles Joseph Duruz from Estavayer in the Canton of Fribourg must have been in Suriname at least 1823–1840. He started as director of the plantation Dijkveld (sugar, 1000 acres) on the Suriname River, where he also applied for the manumission of Josephina, daughter of the mulatto slave woman Louisa. In 1827, he was director of sugar plantation Houttuin (2300 acres). In 1828 he is mentioned as co-administrator with a member of the German Weissenbruch family, major plantation owners. He then went on a trip to Europe. In 1834, he was back in Suriname as director and co-administrator of sugar plantation De jonge Bijekorf (1000 acres, 92 slaves). In 1836, he appeared fort he first time as co-administrator on Berthoud’s plantations. Berthoud then started doubting Duruz‹ qualities: he had been ill, had recovered but was now devoted to alcohol. In 1840, another manumission was registered for Duruz: For 1000 guilders he bought the freedom of slave children Carel Constant van Duruz and Elisabeth Nanette van Duruz. They were called Duruz because their mother had been manumitted under this name. In 1841, Duruz planned another trip to Europe, this time with Alfred van Duruz, probably a coloured minor.  From there, his traces are lost. In 1852, Charles Constant van Duruz owned three slaves: Wilhelmijntje (born 1829) and her children und Louisa Francina Constantia Duruz and Josephine Cucient Elisabeth van Duruz, who was manumitted in 1855. Duruz seems to have left behind a large (coloured) kinship in Suriname.

• In 1751, Charles Alexander Dunant (1728–?1774) was the son of Ami Dunant (1679–1740) and Alexandrine Trembley (1696-1778), from whose family came plantation owner Jean Trembley in Saint-Domingue. The Dunant family was from Geneva (the same family as Henri Dunant, 1828-1910, Swiss founder of the Red Cross). Charles Alexander Dunant was  acolonel in the Swiss regiment Hirzel, which was in Dutch services, and then became co-administrator of plantation Egmont (430 acrescoffee, 77 slaves)on the Commewijne River, of which David Flournois had inherited one fifth. In 1755, Flournois gave up the plantation, and Dunant became its director. In 1765, Dunant lost his job as director and one Johannes Tanner (died Paramaribo 1774) became his successor. In 1766, Dunant was mentioned as «priseur», an official specialising in the vaulation of plantations. In 1769, Charles Alexander Dunant became owner of plantation Naaltwijk (700 acres, coffee, 148 slaves) on Motkreek/Mudcreek. In 1770, he recruited workers and an overseer for the slaves in Geneva. Together with his wife Jeanna Dekanter (1731–1813), whom he had married in 1772 in Holland, he travelled to Suriname in 1772 and became owner of plantation Boxel (3100 acres, sugar, bananas, coffee, 124 slaves) on the Suriname River, where the sugar canes were pressed with the use of a water mill. Dunant and Dekanter had a son, Alexandre-Jean Dunant (born in Suriname around 1773, died in Geneva 1858). Probably in 1773, Dunant and his wife returned to Geneva. Plantation Boxel  might have belonged to a Dunant family member (his wife or his son) until 1793, when it passed into the hands of the mortgage fund with which one Dunant had done business. Jeanna Dekanter died in Geneva in 1813.

Isaac Vernet (1700-1773), banker in Paris, left to his son Isaac Vernet (Geneva) the sum of 16,000 guilders in 16 bonds of a plantation company in Suriname.

Michel Trollet from Geneva owned plantations in Surinam from 1740-1770. One of them was called Mon Plaisir.

• Protestant clergyman Heinrich Grob from Zurich emigrated to Suriname, where he was employed by the Dutch West India Company (WIC), who paid him with money and slaves. He retired from the pulpit in 1783. In 1803, his widow intervened with the Swiss federal and the Zurich authorities to secure the 500 guilders pension which she had been promised by the Dutch West Indian Company.

• One Daniel Högger, probably Salomé Högger-Rietmann’s grandson and a magistrate in Amsterdam, had high-level connections with the mortgage fund Harman van de Poll & Co, which was among the foremost financiers in Suriname, investing some 4.5 million guilders in 40 plantations.

• On Para Creek in Suriname, there were two plantations called Zwitsergrond and DrieZwitsergrond. This probably goes back to the fact that around the middle of the 18th century, some of the local lands were given to smale-scale farmers from Switzerland. On those plantations, fugitive slaves from the 1733 Berbice rebellion were defeated. In a 1856 plantation list, the two plantations only figure as Zwitserland. Also on Para Creek and close to the two above-mentioned, there was a timber plantation called Munchenstein. It was fist mentioned in 1819. Münchenstein is a village in the canton of Basel-Landschaft (NW Switzerland).

• In the 18th century, members of the Faesch family from Bâle owned, held bonds or shares on the Surinam plantations Herstelling (coffee and cotton), Marienburg (sugar, about 140 slaves, started in 1745, inherited from Maria de Hoy-de la Jaille, sold by the Faesch family in 1769 for 300,ooo guilders, 200 slaves in 1770), Voorburg (sugar), Leyerdorp, Weltevreden (coffee), Waterland (5310 acres, sugar, later coffee, 89 slaves in 1837), Palmeniribo (attacked by maroons in 1758, overseer killed, looted, 60 rifles taken by maroons, 80 slaves leaving the plantation), Surimombo (3400 acres, 100 slaves in 1699, slave-rising subdued by 25 soldiers in 1707), Charlottenburg (coffee), Bekenhorst, Egmont, Rhijnbeek, Mon Tresor (coffee) and Hoyland. In 1769, the Faesch family also sold 1/32 of the ship «De vijf gesusters», used for slave transports. The sugar plantation Hoyland was owned by the Faesch family as late as 1852. One Nicolaas Faas (Faesch?) held shares in the Societeit van Berbice. On her wedding in 1782, Margarethe Maria Faesch from Bâle received plantations as a dowry from her parents, and out of gratitude christened her country estate near Bâle «Zum kleinen Surinam» (Little Suriname). Until today, a bus-stop in that area is called «Surinam». In 1946, historian Walter Bodmer wrote about Johann Jacob Faesch (1732-1796), husband of Maria de Hoy-de la Jaille, that he had «not allowed himself in the last quarter of the 18th century to be tempted by the ‹boom› that prevailed in Suriname despite repeated uprisings by the bush negroes, either to make far-reaching investments or to mortgage his plantation.». Bodmer called this «sound business practice».

• The sugar plantation Hoyland (Sranan Tongo Name: Di Hooi ) on the Commewijne River in Suriname was created in 1737 by David de Hoy (1694–1743). In 1770, it went to his sons-in-law Johannes Faesch (1727–1768) and Johann Jacob Faesch (1732–1796), in 1793 to his son Jean-Jacques Faesch and in 1819 to the heirs of Jean-Jacques Faesch. When it was sold to Englishman Hugh Wright (1809–1877) in 1853, the co-owners were: Jean Balthazar Faesch from Basel, Jean-Jacques David de Faesch from Passij (?), Jeanne Maria de Faesch from St. Petersburg, Valerie Faesch from Basel (widow of Jean Luc Thurneysen), Eli Bourcard from Basel (widower of Marguerite Valerie Rhyner), Eli Benoit Burckhardt Breck from Basel, Elise Burckardt from Basel, Henry Rhyner from Basel, Rudolph Rhyner from Basel, David Claparède from Champel near Geneva, Charles Claude Claparède from Geneva, Jeanne Elisabeth Passavant from Geneva (widow of Emanuel Faesch), Alfons François Faesch from Geneva, Marie Valerie Faesch from Geneva, Rodolphe Vischer from Basel, Frederic Vischer from Basel ins his function of legal guardian of the underage children August Stehelin and Marie StehelinJulia Vischer(1821–1888) from Basel,  daughter of merchant banker Wilhelm Vischer and since 1840 the wife of Rudolf Paravicini (1815-1888) from Basel. Rudolf Paravicini learnt his trade in the Lyon textile industry, entered the silk ribbon company «Dietrich Preiswerk & Co.» in 1835, whose owner he became in 1847. He was a member of the Basel legislature 1845–84 and a member of the cantonal cabinet 1856–61. He co-founded the «Basel Insurances» in 1863 and presided over  their board of directors 1864–88. His military career took him from officer (1835) via colonel (1858) and brigadier (1860) to commander of a division (1870). 1870–1871 he was Chief of Staff of the Swiss Army and oversaw the internment of the Bourbaki Army. In 1863 (emancipation), 636 slaves lived and worked on the 2170 acres plantation. 

• The son of Margarethe Maria Faesch, Johann Rudolf Rhyner, was sent to Suriname to administer his mother’s plantations. With an enslaved woman, he had a son called Jan Harry Rhyiner, whom he recognized as his legitimate offspring. He wanted to buy both the mother’s and the son’s freedom, but slave owner Boedeker only allowed the purchase of Jan Harry. Johann Rudolf then married a mulatto woman called Missi Groenberg. Later he returned to Basel, and when he committed suicide in 1824, he left a fortune of 350,000 Swiss francs.

Pierre Alexandre DuPeyrou (1729–1794) from Neuchâtel (NW Switzerland) owned plantations in Suriname, which he had inherited from his father Pierre. These were the sugar plantations Libanon and La Nouvelle Espérance on the Cottica River, as well as the coffee plantation Pérou and the timber plantation L’Espérance on Para Creek. These plantations generated for Pierre Alexandre DuPeyrou an income of 24,000-40,000 guilders per annum. In 1774, Pierre Alexandre DuPeyrou, in Amsterdam at that time, authorised widow Chaillet and Nicolas Guisan, general administrator of the Peyrou possessions in Suriname, to sell to one Jacot des Combes  in Suriname «three mulatto children of female slave Brandina» of Perou Plantation under condition that the mother Brandina give her consent to the said sale and transport and that «three negroes (one for each child)» be bought and sold together with the girls. In 1843, the plantations Libanon and Zuinigheid (with 53 slaves) were still registered as being in the hands of «Erven du Pyrou» (heirs of the DuPeyrou family).

Jacques-Joseph DuPeyrou (1734–1788) from the Neuchâtel family owned the plantations Monserrat on the Cottica River and La Bonne Amitié (sugar) on Para Creek. On the Commewjine River, Jan (or Jean) DuPeyrou (1700–1767) owned the coffee plantation Picardie. His daughter Luzia du Peyrou (1729–1791) was born in Paramaribo. One J. P. Du-Peyrou owned the coffee and cotton plantation Guadeloupe. In 1786, a certificate of baptism registered the birth of an «illegitimate mulatto child» named François Johannes Jacobus Maarb, whose mother was the «free negro» Lucretie van du Peijrou.

• In 1703, a service contract was signed between Jean Tourton, owner of plantations in Suriname, originally from Geneva, and Nicolas Hachen from Reichenbach (Canton of Berne, central Switzerland). Hachen committed himself for two years of work on the plantations owned by Jean Tourton and Jean-Baptiste Fatio from Geneva. In 1706, administration of the Tourton and Fatio plantations passed into the hands of Isaac Tourton and Jean André Guiguer.

=> In 1694, a contract was concluded in Geneva between Jan (Jean) Tourton and the carpenters Claude Braillard from Gourgy (?) in the Canton of Neuchâtel and Nicolas Wis (Wyss?) from Berne.

• At the beginning of the 18th century, Jean-André Guiger (born 1671) from the Canton of Thurgau (NE Switzerland) died in Surinam, where his uncle Jean Tourton had owned the coffee plantation Ellen on the Commewijne River. Jean Tourton had been director of the «Sociëteit van Suriname» from 1698-1706 and had created the coffee plantation Tourtonne near Paramaribo. The «Sociëteit van Suriname» was created in 1683 and was owned ­– one third each – by the City of Amsterdam, the West Indian Company and the Aerssen of Sommerlsdijck family.

• Student of theology Ami Butini (1718-1780) from Geneva inherited the plantation Tulpenburg on a tributary to the Commewijne River. He settled and got married in 1753 in Paramaribo, where he also served as a Dutch legal officer. In 1759, he offered a number of ethnographic objects to the Geneva Library, among them a foetus de nègre. Johanna Magdalena Buttini (1773-1829), born a «redeemed mulatto» (a manumitted child of a white man and a negro woman) in Paramaribo might have been his daughter.

Gédéon Flournois (1639-1684) from Geneva studied theology in 1659, was ordained as minister of the Calvinist State Church and worked as hospital pastor in 1667. He became a plantation owner in Suriname and on his death left his plantations to his son David Flournois. The latter sold his plantations and his house in 1755, and settled as a banker in Paris.

Jean Gallatin (1733-1765) from Geneva left his underage son Albert (the future US Secretary of the Treasury) his share in the plantation Le Mat-Rouge in Surinam. The other half was held by Georges-Alexandre Rolaz (1728-1805), citizen of Geneva and Rolle (Canton of Berne/Vaud), captain in the service of the Dutch army, and by Alphonse Rolaz from Rolle.

1.12 Trinidad and Tobago

=> In 1688, coming from Suriname, Abel Tissot from the vicinity of Mollens in the Canton of Berne / Vaud appeared off the coast of Tobago and, with an armed band, tried to wrench the island away from the British together with what was left of the original Dutch settlers.

=> In 1795, the Faesch family from Bâle held shares in the plantation Vriendschap on Tobago.

=> In 1781, Henry Peschier (1741-1791) from a Geneva Huguenot family landed in Port-of-Spain with his wife, children, brother Jean and his mother-in-law. He received 179 acres of land from the Spanish governor, which through the work of slaves he turned into the sugar plantation Paradise Estate. After his death, the plantation remained the property of his wife Celeste Rose Peschier (1755-1817) until her death. The heirs then sold it to the governor. Henry’s brother Jean and his wife Elizabeth were granted 523 acres of land in Naparima along the river Guaracara, which they turned into a sugar estate. Henry also received land at Point-a-Pierre. The family spread in the early 19th century, and the «Former British Colonial Dependencies, Slave Registers, 1813-1834» record some 600 slaves in the hands of members of the Peschier family.

=> Sir Ralph James Woodford (1784-1828), Peter Thelluson’s nephew and a trustee of his will after the death of his uncle Matthew Woodford, was governor of Trinidad from 1813 to 1828. He was also a strong apologist for the retention of slave labour.

=> Georg Ludwig Vonwiller (1793­–1835) from a St.Gallen family moved to Trinidad, where he «imported» a female slave in 1822. He married Gabrielle d’Ey, and they had four children: Georg Heinrich (born 1824 in Grenada), Franz Adolf (b. 1826), Andreas (b. 1833). and Louise Maria Anna (b. 1834).

=> The UK Slave Register 1813–1834 has 280 slaves in the hands of owners named Cazenove, Cazeneuve, Casenave, Casnave, etc. in Grenada, Trinidad, and Mauritius.



2.1 Cuba

=> In 1815, Heinrich Escher (1776-1853), member of the Escher family from Zurich and father of industrialist, politician and railway tycoon Alfred Escher (1819-1882), bought the coffee plantation Buen Retiro southwest of Havanna, including 87 slaves, for his brothers Friedrich Ludwig und Ferdinand Escher, who operated it. Friedrich Ludwig Escher died in 1845, and in 1847, Heinrich Escher inherited the plantation, the slaves and the infrastructure with a total worth of 40,000 pesos, about 800,000 Swiss francs in today’s worth. As has been argued by German historian Michael Zeuske, one of the authorities on slavery in general and Caribbean and Cuban slavery in particular, Federico (Friedrich Ludwig Escher) begat a child with his enslaved washer-woman Serafina, which means that Alfred Escher, the great champion of politics and industry, had a little Afro-Cuban cousin born into slavery.

=> Heinrich Studer (1779-1831) from Winterthur in the Canton of Zurich lived in Matanzas as a plantation owner.

=> Johannes Köhli‏‎ (1773–1814) from Biel in the Canton of Berne worked in Cuba as a merchant and died there.

=> Karl Wilhelm Scherb (1780–1827) from Bischofszell in the Canton of Thurgau emigrated to the USA and then to Cuba, where he lived as a merchant and a manufacturer. He died in Havanna.‏‎

=> Johann Ulrich Zellweger (1804–1871) from the village of Trogen (Canton of Appenzell Ausserrhoden, NE Switzerland) migrated to Cuba in 1831, where he was intended to take over the Studer plantation. But Studer had died, and Zellweger started to work for a number of merchant houses founded and owned by members of the Drake family. The original family firm had been founded by James Drake (1763-1838), a shrewd trader from England, who had married into the Cuban aristocracy and become a sugar-plantation owner. In 1840, Zellweger became a member of the executive quartet of Drake Brothers & Co., together with James Drake’s son Charles, proprietor of a sugar plantation with 400 slaves, Alexander Friedrich, Charles Respinger, and José Morales. In 1842, a new partnership was formed with Johann Ulrich Zellweger, Louis Morales, and two other sons of James Drake’s. In the summer of 1845, Zellweger retired from the company and returned to Europe a very wealthy man. Based on his fortune acquired in Cuba, he founded two banks: in 1848 «Zellweger & Cie» (with business partner Charles Respinger) in Paris and in 1866 the private «Bank für Appenzell A.Rh», which in 1906 merged with the «Schweizerische Bankverein» (which in turn merged with the «Schweizerische Bankgesellschaft» in 1997 to become today’s UBS). In 1859, he founded the «Basel Mission Trading Company» and became its first president in 1864. Basel Mission workshops and factories existed on the Gold Coast and in southern India to produce cocoa, palm oil cotton, textiles and bricks on a large scale.

=> In 1850, Jacob Jakob (born 1822) from the village of Trogen (Canton of Appenzell Ausserrhoden, E Switzerland)worked as a plantation overseer in Cuba.

=> Around 1850, Philippe Robert-Tissot from Neuchâtel, who had been living in Santiago for a long time, was the owner of a coffee plantation. Until around 1865, the directors of the plantation were Charles Jeanneret (1824–1869), son of a Neuchâtel watchmaker established in Cuba, and his brother-in-law Reymond Robert-Tissot.

=> In his autobiography «Eine Selbstschau», the German-Swiss educationalist and writer Heinrich Zschokke (1771-1848) relates how in 1830, he accompanied the boy Thomas James Emanuel Spengler from Unterseen BE to Le Havre, from where he was to start his voyage to Cuba. That boy was the son of Swiss planter Spengler on Cuba and of a «beautiful negro woman» and had been sent to Switzerland for his early education, where his finances had been laid into Zschokke’s hands. Now his father wanted him back on Cuba, and Zschokke had agreed to organise his trip and his embarkment. Zschokke also mentions the vicious racism with which the «mulatto boy» met on his way to Le Havre. The famous historian of the City of Havanna Eusebio Leal Spengler (1942–2020) is most probably a descendant the Swiss planters via the family of his mother.

=> Jean-Théodore Rivier (1750–1821) from Geneva, as the company «Rivier et Cie.», invested in the slave-ship «Conquérant» (1791/92, Le Havre => West Central Africa => St.Helena => Malembo => Havana, 428/361 slaves)

=> In 1825/26, the Swiss indiennes company «Favre et Cie.», family from Couvet, Canton of Neuchâtel, invested in the slave-ship «L’Arthur» (1825/26, Nantes => Africa => Santiago de Cuba, 183/160 slaves).

=> In 1822, the Neuchâtel company of Charles Rossel, «Rossel et Boudet», owned and fitted out the slave-ship «Dauphin», which sailed from Nantes via Africa to Santiago de Cuba (234/192 slaves), and the slave-ship «L’Elise» (Nantes => Africa => Havana, 234/192 slaves)

=> In the 1780s, Louis d’lllens (1749-1819) from Lausanne and «Louis d’Illens et Cie», in association with Jacob van Berchem (1736–1794) and Augustin Roguin (1768–1827), imported coffee, indigo, and cotton directly from Martinique. They owned and fitted out the slave-ship «L’Helvétie» (1791/92, Marseille => Indian Ocean => Moçambique => Cape of Good Hope => Havana, 550/414 slaves).

=> In 1791, the slave-ship «Conquérant» sailed with 428 slaves from Le Havre to West Central Africa and via Malembo in Angola to Havana, where 362 slaves were disembarked. One of the Burckhardt companies from Bâle had invested 9,700 pounds in the expedition. Because of the Haitian revolution, the slaves could not be sold in Saint-Domingue, but were taken to Havana.

2.2 Netherlands Antilles (colonies «Aruba», «Bonaire», «Curaçao», «St. Eustacius», «St. Martin»)

=> Bankers from Geneva helped to finance the Dutch West India Company.

=> Isaak Faesch (1687–1758) from Bâle was a merchant active in the textile trade and a speculator in shares of the French «Compagnie d’Occident». He commanded the Dutch islands of St. Eustacius, Saba, and St. Martin for three years (1737-1740). He was governor of the Netherlands Antilles (Curaçao, Aruba and Bonaire) from 1740 to 1758. In 1745, he reintroduced flogging, branding with red-hot irons and banning to the Bonaire salt facilities as corporal punishment in order to maintain public order. Neveretheless, in 1750, the slaves on the West India Company estate Hato, which Faesch managed, rebelled. The rebellion was defeated, the rebels treated harshly, and 47 Blacks were beheaded. In 1761, Faesch’s plenipotentiary sold the plantation Rustenburg.

=> Johann Rudolf Lauffer (1753-1833) from the town of Zofingen (Canton of Berne/Aargau, N Switzerland), whose mother was from the Chaillet family from Neuchâtel (see 1.7), entered the services of the «Dutch West India Company» (WIC) and arrived in Curaçao in 1776. In 1786, he married Petronella Rojer, who died childless in 1800. In 1796, he became governor of Curaçao, and in 1799 governor of Curaçao, Aruba and Bonaire. In 1800, Lauffer bought the plantation Bleinheim. In 1803, he travelled to Europe, accompanied by a young black slave called Theodorus, whom he had manumitted «out of affection». In 1804, he withdrew from public life, and in 1805 returned to Switzerland. In 1806, he returned to Curaçao, where he bought the plantation Eenzaamheid. In 1830, he married again, his second wife being his long time concubine, the coloured Hermina Corpus (van Groot) Davelaar (born 1777), sole heir of her aunt Maria Beatrix Gayde, from whom she had inherited plantation Vredenberg in 1828. He died in 1833, one of the richest inhabitants of the colony, having made his fortune by trade and investments. He left his wife and children (who kept their Swiss citizenships and were active in the trading company «Gebrüder Lauffer», in the army, and in the banking business) the plantations and the slaves of Bleinheim, Eenzaamheid, and Nooitgedacht (aka Heintje Kool, inherited by Lauffer’s second wife). In 1834, the Lauffer Brothers bought the plantation Damasco. Lauffer’s youngest child was called Willem Tell Lauffer (born 1817). His son Rudolph Adriaan Lauffer (born 1801) together with his wife Dorothea Josephina da Costa (1820–1884) owned the plantation Sukasa. Willem Tell Lauffer administered the salt plantation Damasco (or Jan Thiel) of 400 acres with many slaves. His daughter Hermina Geertruida Maria Lauffer later owned Damasco. In 1847, the slave Maria Victorina Duchatel, born in 1828 as daugher of slave Anica Antonia and a white sergeant, was manumitted by the Lauffer Brothers. Shortly afterwards, in 1848, Maria Victorina Duchatel gave birth to Marie Louise. In 1848, Jacob Lauffer (1810-1883) wrote a petition for the abolition of slavery. In 1863, Johann Rudolf Lauffer’s widow and the six Lauffer sons owned 81 slaves. After Jacob Lauffer’s death, Marie Louise and all the children born after her (Samuel Johannes, 1851, and Jacob Jr., 1861, were recognised as his legitimate children. The widowed Hermina Geertruida Maria Lauffer is documented on the list of slave owners with 16 slaves, for whom she was compensated with 3000 guilders. There were close ties between the Lauffer and the Marugg families.

=> Johann Heinrich (Jan Hendrik) Hottinger (1751– 1823) from Zurich became a military engineer and cartographer in the service of the Dutch in 1777 and a captain in 1788. He sojourned in Suriname from November 1786 to March 1787 and made several maps, especially of the Comewyne and the Suriname River. He went on to Curaçao the same year and depicted the fortifications of Willemstad, and he also worked on Sint Eustatius. He retired from Dutch service in 1795 to enter the service of the British, but he must have returned in the service of the Kingdom of The Netherlands in 1814, where he retired with the rank of Major General in July 1817.

=> Edouard Caliste Cusin (originally a surgeon in Suriname) was a member of the court on St. Eustatius 1835–1837. He died back in Suriname in 1838.

=> In 1915, Casper Arturo Perret Gentil (1887–1980) from a family of Caribbean plantation owners (originally from Le Locle) bought Damasco plantation, where he grew and exported oranges, mangos, coconuts, bananas, and other agricultural products to France, Venezuela and Santo Domingo. He also kept cattle and expanded the salt production, which was sold to Cuba and Santo Domingo. Shell was also a major buyer: the company used the salt for refining crude oil from Venezuela.

=> Johann Heinrich Sutermeister (1768–1847) from Zofingen, Canton of Berne/Aargau, was a merchant in Curaçao, later in New York. He followed his uncle Johann Rudolf Lauffer to Curaçao, where in 1800 he first married Johanna Gijsbertha Römer, daughter of a slave-trade commissioner and slave-auctioneer.

=> In 1774, Abraham Perret Gentil (1747–1824) from Le Locle in the Canton of Neuchâtel (then part of Prussia) joined the Dutch military, became captain of the marine regiment Bentinck and soon left for Suriname. He got married in 1776 in Paramaribo. In 1793, he took over the command of the garrison of Curaçao. In 1797, he was stationed in Saint Domingue for a short time, probably because the Dutch cooperated with the French. At the end of his career, he was brigadier general of the French army. He died in Lyon.

=> Johann Jakob Hoffmann (died ca. 1778) from Bâle, together with Isaak Faesch (1687–1758), traded cocoa, sugar, coffee, tobacco, silver, and gold on Curaçao. They were active in the brokerage and insurance business, insuring both regular inter-Caribbean trade and smuggling ventures by Curaçaoan and French West Indian vessels. The crops they traded in included sugar from Guadeloupe, Martinique, and Saint-Domingue, tobacco from Puerto Rico, Santo Domingo, and St. Vincent, coffee from Guadeloupe and Martinique, and cacao from Venezuela. Hoffmann, secretary of the Dutch colony of St.Martin, was also a slave-trader on Curaçao, which has been called a hub of the global slave trade. He purchased slaves from the British islands (like St. Christopher) and had them transported to the coast of Venezuela, where they were exchanged with cocoa. Once he planned to evade tax on slaves who arrived in Willemstad by dressing them up as sailors. Hoffmann advised his human-trafficking partners to buy «only young and strong negroes with handsome faces». He was buried in Sissach BL.

=> Isaac Debrot (1771-1854) from Neuchâtel came to Curaçao 1793 as a soldier in Dutch service. He was commander of Bonaire from 1817-1827, i.e. he held the highest job in the administration of the island. In 1863, when slavery was abolished there, five Debrot families owned 71 slaves.

=> Martinus Marugg (1784-1823) was born in Amsterdam to a family originally from Klosters (Canton of Graubünden). His father Caspar Marugg (born 1759) had served the Dutch in the 2nd Battalion of the Grisons Infantry Regiment, had emigrated to Amsterdam and married there in 1782. Martinus reached Curaçao as a naval surgeon in 1802 and was assigned to the 28th Battalion of Westindian Light Infantry. Some years later, he was –by the colonial administration – appointed military surgeon in charge of plantation owners and slaves in the «Westdivisie», an administrative region of Curaçao. As such he was based on the plantation Buitenbosch.

=> In 1781, the commercial agents Hogguer & De Galz made a plan for an illegal slave voyage via Angola to Saint-Domingue. It was the time of the Fourth Anglo-Dutch War (1780-1784), and they proposed in a letter from Curaçao to shipowners in Holland to transport 450 to 500 slaves. False voyage papers were supposed to state that the ship was on its way from Holland to Curaçao, and it was then supposed to miss a port so that it could sail to Port-au-Prince without being noticed. The profits anticipated from the sale of human merchandise and sugar in particular were exorbitantly high: All in all, both gentlemen would gain 110,000 Livres Tournois from this trip. The trading agents took the loss of life into account in advance. They assumed a 20% loss of life. The insurance premium for sailing to Africa was set at 12%, that for sailing to Europe was estimated at 25%. It is not clear whether the trip ever materialised and which member of the Hogguer family (originally from St.Gallen) was involved. Around 1780, several Hogguers held diplomatic posts in Denmark and Portugal in the service of the Dutch government, such as Jacob Christoph (1758-1793), working in Sweden, Jan Willem Hogguer (1755) working in Portugal and Russia, or Jan Jacob Hogguer in 1782 appointed commissioner general of commerce in Paris. In 1782, merchants Hogguer and De Galz from Curaçao decreed manumission of mulatto («sambose») Sara and paid 350 peso for her.

=> In his travelogue «Bericht des Grafen Karl von Zinzendorf über seine handelspolitische Studienreise durch die Schweiz 1764», the Austrian count describes the commercial activities of the Ammann banking and merchant company from Schaffhausen (N Switzerland), which traded in cotton, indigo, sugar, and tobacco. The first quality cotton came from Curaçao and Berbice, but from the latter there were no more imports because «the colony has been ruined». From that cotton, the Toggenburg textile industry (today Canton of St.Gallen) produced muslin fabrics. Curaçao cotton was very rare: a ship that transported 60 bales from Saint Domingue only carried 6 from Curaçao. The second quality variety came from Martinique and Saint-Domingue and was transported to Switzerland via Marseilles, Lyon, Belfort and Basel. The third (and worst) quality cotton came from Barbados. Nearly 1000 bags of cotton were imported by Ammann every year and were processed in the Toggenburg and Glarus area. In the second half of the 18th century, 35% of the cotton it delivered into the Zurich, Berne/Aargau, Toggenburg, and Appenzell areas were from Berbice or Essequibo.

2.3 French West Indies (colonies «Guiana», «Guadeloupe», «Martinique»)

=> Sebastian Högger (1686-1737) from St.Gallen was in the service of the Swedish navy from 1710 on, probably because one of his brothers was a banker in Paris with close ties to Sweden. Sebastian passed the captain’s exam in Brest and published a treatise on the tides («De fluxu et refluxu maris»). On behalf of King Charles XII. of Sweden, he travelled to Martinique and to the Americas in 1716. In 1717, he was promoted to Swedish sea captain and to the Swedish nobility. In 1718, he undertook voyages to the African coast, among others to Ceuta and Tunis. In 1723, he was commander of a squadron in the rank of a general, and the same year he was raised to the rank of a «Reichsfreiherr», changing his name to Hogguèr de Thurberg. He ended his life as the Swedish envoy to Paris. Because he was childless, the «Fideicommissum» Höggersberg (a little castle on the Rosenberg Hill, demolished in 1848) went to his brother Laurenz.  

=> In 1791, the slave-ship «Intrépide» with an investment of 194,000 livres by Burkhardt family company from Bâle sailed from Nantes via Vieux Calabar to Cayenne.

=> In 1826, the Swiss indiennes company «Favre et Cie.» from Neuchâtel invested in the slave-ship «Auguste» (1826, Nantes => Africa => Cayenne, 535/440 slaves).

=> Hans-Ulrich Pelloutier from Bâle owned ands fitted out two slaving vessels: «Astrée» (1817, Nantes => Saint Louis => Basse-Terre (Guadeloupe), 183/160 slaves); «Circée» (1818, Nantes => Africa => Basse-Terre (Guadelopue), 234/192 slaves).

=> In 1789, Joseph Fribourg from Fribourg in Switzerland, grenadier in the Guadeloupe regiment, died in the military hospital in Basse-Terre.

=> Pierre Penotte from the City of Berne in the Canton of Berne, soldier on Guadeloupe, died in the military hospital of Basse-Terre in 1787.

=> Antoine Legros from Saint-Saphorin in the Canton pf Berne/Vaud was a fusilier in the Swiss Regiment of Guadeloupe. He died in the military hospital in Point-à-Pitre 1789.

=> Pierre François Guez from Saint-Légier-La Chiésaz in the Canton of Berne/Vaud wrote his last will and testament in Bordeaux, at the age of 37, before departing for Guadeloupe. Among others, he named Jean Rudolph Guez from La Chiésaz as executer of his last will. He designated his brother Jean Baptiste Guez, who was staying at the Cape in Saint-Domingue, as his sole heir. Pierre François Guez died in Point-à-Pitre in 1769.

=> In 1750, Jacques Christophe Ammann from the Swiss village of Underwald was unit-commander in the Swiss Regiment de Karrer, which was at the service of the French navy in the Martinique garrison. He had been an officer for 40 years and had been appointed «Chevalier de l’Ordre de Saint-Louis» in 1729.

=> Maurice Hug had served France since the age of 17 and for 30 years as an officer in the now reformed Swiss Regiment de Hallwyl (reformed in 1762). From a marriage made in Martinique, where he had served 26 years, he had a son Joseph Hug, who had been a cadet in the Regiment and about to be promoted to officer. He was now a grenadier in the Regiment de Lochmann and was known for his misbehaviour and debts. In 1770, Maurice Hug asked for his son, who was presently in prison in the Garrison Mauberger, to be transferred to a suitable port from where he should be transported to those islands intended for the correction of children of families. He would there serve his king until he proves himself worthy of returning.

=> Jean Raude from Berne died a «pauvre bourgeois» (a poor inhabitant) in the military hospital of Fort Royal on Martinique in 1789. 

=> Charles Daniel De Meuron (1738-1806) from Saint-Sulpice in the Canton of Neuchâtel gave up his apprenticeship in Strasbourg to enlist in the Hallwyl regiment at the age of 17 and fought in the West Indies during the Seven Years› War. He then served in the Regiment Hallwyl 1755–1763, and after the Hallwyl Regiment disbanded in 1765, he served a further 16 years in the Swiss Guards of the Regiment Erlach. The «Musée d’ethnographie de Neuchâtel» received from him rare objects from Guyana, dated 1756–1758. In 1779, he received from the French king a licence to exploit the land between the rivers Approuague and Oyapock in Guiana with the help of soldier-colonists and slaves. The project, for which he had offered to raise a Swiss Regiment, did not materialise, and although he was a decorated officer, his prospects of military promotion were restricted because he was a Protestant. His fortunes changed in 1781, when the French minister in Holland, Comte d’Affry, recommended him to the Dutch East India Company, which was in search of a mercenary regiment to protect the Dutch colonies from invasion by the British. De Meuron raised a regiment for the Dutch East India Company and was stationed at the Cape of Good Hope in 1783. After a long military career, de Meuron returned to Neuchâtel a very wealthy man.

=> Jean Baptiste Hudry from La Cluse Evèche in Geneva entered the services of the Swiss Regiment d›Hallwyl in 1757 and was stationed in Martinique, where he served as a soldier for 57 months. During the siege of Fort Royal, his arm was burnt while manipulating with a canon. In 1762, an army surgeon in Rochefort certified that his left hand was severely crippled.

=> In 1747, one Chalon, having lived in Martinique and formerly Swiss sergeant in the company of the Regiment de Karrer, wanted to return to the Windward Islands in order to take up an inheritance and then to establish himself on Saint-Domingue. 

=> Franz Xaver Rickli from Schwyz was a soldier in the 2nd Company of the Swiss Regiment de Hallwyl and was 28 years old. In 1752 he joined the Regiment and was sent to Martinique. He served for 121 months. The infirmities he had contracted made further service impossible. He demanded to be pensioned off in Huningue (Alsace).

=> In 1740, an officer of a Swiss regiment named Sauvage was killed in a duel by one Durand, officer of the troops stationed in Martinique.

=> Antoine Laurent Enecker from Vendlincourt (Canton of Berne, today Jura) was captain-lieutenant in the Regiment de Karrer and stationed in Fort Royal on Martinique. He had joined the regiment in 1719, been promoted to ensign in 1724, to lieutenant in 1726 and to captain in 1734. In 1743 he applied for leave in order to regain his health in his home country. He boarded the vessel «Le Diamant». In 1750, he returned to Martinique.

=> Ludwig Rudolf Stürler (1760–1797) from Berne was an officer in Austrian, Prussian and British services and died in St. Pierre, Martinique.‏‎

=> Captain Henri le Chambrier from Neuchâtel died in Martinique. 

=> Sir Georges Prévost (1767–1816), son of Augustin Prévost from Geneva, was made British Governor of St. Vincent in 1794, became Governor of St. Lucia in 1799 and Governor of Dominica in 1802. His amiable ways and the fact that a British governor spoke French won him the respect of the French planters.

=> One Heinrich Hagenbuch (1801–1858) and his brother Karl Samuel Hagenbuch (1808–1859)‏‎ from Aarau died in Martinique.‏‎

=> The Hünerwadel family from Lenzburg contributed to the wealth of this provincial town in the Canton of Aargau/Berne. In 1732, Marcus Hünerwadel (1725–1805) was granted permission to turn his fulling mill into an indiennes production center. In 1764, it employed 200 workers. Lenzburg became the areas’s leading staple town for raw cotton, which first came from the Levante and then from Martinique. In 1759/60, Marcus Hünerwadel and his son (also called Marcus) had the «Hünerwadelhaus» built, a trading center located on the Freischarenplatz. Gottlieb Hünerwadel (1744–1820) became immensely rich by trading cotton. In 1765, he married Susanna Elisabeth Hunziker (1741–1767), who also came from a family of indiennes producers. A member of the Hunziker family was also found among the investors of the slave-trading company «Solier, Martin et Salavy».

=> In 1815, the slave-ship «Petite Louise» with an investment of 20,000 livres by a Burkhardt family company (copper sheet and indiennes textiles) sailed from Nantes via Cap Lopez (Gabon) to Cayenne. Of the 319 slaves embarked 263 survived the Middle Passage.

=> The company «Simon & Roques», originally from Bâle, fitted out the slave ship «Demoiselle» in Nantes (1791/92, Nantes => Ouidah => Basse Terre => Suriname => Guadeloupe, 238/203).

=> Heinrich «Henri Bourcard» Burckhardt (1817–1887) of the branch of the Bâle family established since 1770 in Nantes/La Rochelle is noted as «consul» in Martinique.‏‎

=> In 1785, the slave-ship «Bonne Sophie» with an unknown investment by a Burkhardt family company sailed from Honfleur via the Guinea Coast to Guadeloupe.

=> Jean Gressier (ca. 1705-1785) lived in Guadeloupe 1738-1747. The French Gressier family (André father, André son, Jean) had been wealthy sugar plantation owners in the Trois-Rivières area, producing 34,000 lb of sugar p.a. In 1749, Jean Gressier acquired the citizenship of La-Tour-de-Peilz in the Canton of Berne/Vaud (W Switzerland) and bought the local castle.

=> Gaspar-Joël Monod (1717–1783) from Geneva was appointed protestant minister in 1741. The British, who had taken control of the island in 1759 sent him there in the function of chaplain of the governor and minister of the reformed French church. After three and a half years, the French took control again and he had to leave the island for Europe.

=> Jean Platener (Hans Plattner), a pauper from Chur in the Canton of Grisons Switzerland, died in Guadeloupe in 1791.

=> Pierre François Guez lived in Guadeloupe 1767–1782.

=> In 1764, «M. Tronchin», a merchant residing in Saint-Eustache, relative of the famous medical doctor Théodore Tronchin from Geneva, demanded to establish himself on Guadeloupe and to be naturalised. When his demand was refused by the governor, he moved to Saint-Martin, where he worked as an interpreter and was well-known and often seen in public. In 1787, one Bernard Tronchin and children are registered by the commander of Saint-Martin and Saint-Barthélémy. In 1814, in the cosmopolitan city of Gustavia, Bernard Tronchin announced the establishment of a school for children «of both colours and both sexes».

=> The following Swiss military personnel were stationed on Guadeloupe:

Pierre Penotte from Berne, soldier, died in 1787

Joseph Fribourg from Fribourg, soldier in the Guadeloupe Regiment, died in Basse-Terre 1789

Antoine Legros, fusilier in the Guadeloupe Regiment, died in Basse-Terre in 1789

=> In 1790, the slave-ship «Alexandrine» with an investment of 10,000 livres by a Burkhardt family company sailed from Nantes via Angola to Martinique.

=> 1815–1817, the slave-ship «Cultivateur» with an investment of 5,000 livres by a Burkhardt family and an investment from the Neuchâtel company of Charles Rossel, «Rossel et Boudet», sailed from Nantes via Bonny (Niger Delta) and Rio Dande (Angola) to Martinique (519/507 slaves).

=> Hans-Ulrich Pelloutier of the merchant house Pelloutier, Bourcard & Cie. (originally from Basel, with a Nantes branch) is recorded with two slaving vessels: «Astrée» (1817, Nantes => Saint Louis => Basse-Terre (Guadeloupe), 183/160 slaves); «Circée» (1818, Nantes => Africa => Basse-Terre, 234/192 slaves).

=> Charles Louis de Meuron from Neuchâtel, father of Auguste-Fréderic de Meuron («de Bahia»), was an important indiennes manufacturer, whose commercial activities extended as far as Martinique.

=> The following Swiss military personnel were stationed on Martinique as part of the Regiment (de) Karrer (853 Swiss military personnel between 1721 and 1759)

Jacques Christophe Amman, commander of a unit of the Swiss Regiment Karrer, stationed in the Martinique garrison in 1750. In Martinique, the second company of the Swiss Regiment Karrer was stationed.

Sergeant Chalon, inhabitant of Martinique, serving in a company of the Swiss Regiment Karrer, garrisoned on the Îles du Vent in 1747

Jacob Klaine, fusilier in a regiment on Martinique, died in 1789 in Sainte-Lucie

Jacques Raymond de Mazoulière, from Coppet (Canton of Berne/Vaud) was an officer in Martinique 1728–1751.

• Johannes von Hallwyl (1688-1753) from a family active in the silk industry in the Canton of Aargau started his military career in 1708 in Holland, where he fought in a Swiss regiment for the Spanish Netherlands. In 1719, when his regiment was disbanded, he entered the services of the French and sailed to Martinique. In 1720, he became lieutenant of the 1st company of the Regiment de Karrer, stationed in Fort Royal. In 1724, he was captain-lieutenant and commander of the company of Swiss in Petit Goâve in Saint-Domingue. From his military wages, he bought indigo, sugar and tobacco plantations in Saint Domingue and made good money by exporting colonial goods and importing cotton cloths, stockings and cheese. He went on leave to Europe in 1725, 1729, and 1734. In 1735, he was promoted to captain. In 1736, news of the death of his brother reached him, whereupon he decided to return to Switzerland as soon as possible. He was only partly able to liquidate his plantation property, and he left Saint-Domingue in January 1737 on the vessel «Labaleine» to arrive in Europe in May. He later managed to buy back the Swiss family castle by the shores of Lake Hallwil, where he took up residence in 1743 and had three children with Bernhardine von Diesbach (1728–1779), daughter of Franz Ludwig von Diesbach (1684– 1739), captain in Dutch services, and Johanna Dorothea Stürler (1697–1767), from a Bernese family linked to Holland and its East Indies. Until his death in 1753, Johannes von Hallwyl dealt in colonial goods from Saint-Domingue.

=> In his travelogue «Bericht des Grafen Karl von Zinzendorf über seine handelspolitische Studienreise durch die Schweiz 1764», the Austrian count describes the commercial activities of the Ammann banking and merchant company from Schaffhausen (N Switzerland), which traded in cotton, indigo, sugar, and tobacco. The first quality cotton came from Curaçao and Berbice, but from the latter there were no more imports because «the colony has been ruined». From that cotton, the Toggenburg textile industry (today Canton of St.Gallen) produced muslin fabrics. Curaçao cotton was very rare: a ship that transported 60 bales from Saint Domingue only carried 6 from Curaçao. The second quality variety came from Martinique and Saint-Domingue and was transported to Switzerland via Marseilles, Lyon, Belfort and Basel. The third (and worst) quality cotton came from Barbados. Nearly 1000 bags of cotton were imported by Ammann every year and were processed in the Toggenburg and Glarus area. In the second half of the 18th century, 35% of the cotton it delivered into the Zurich, Berne/Aargau, Toggenburg, and Appenzell areas were from Berbice or Essequibo.

=> In the second half of the 18th century, Jacques Solier (1749-1815) from Vevey (Canton of Berne/Vaud, W Switzerland) was first a merchant in Marseille and then part of the profitable enterprise «Cayla, Solier, Cabanes, Jugla et Cie» in Cadiz. He organised triangular expeditions towards the East and the West Indies, among them the slave-ship «La Naz». In 1814, he bought the sugar plantation Clairefontaine on Guadeloupe and in 1833 sold it to his nephew Alfred d’Alaret Solier.

=> Jean Samuel Guisan (1740-1801) from Avenches (Canton of Berne/Vaud, see also 1.7), a direct ancestor of the Swiss WW II general Henri Guisan (1874-1960), after his stay in Suriname, moved to Cayenne, and from 1777-1791 was chief engineer responsible for hydraulic and agricultural projects. With the techniques of polderisation and canal-digging, realized with an enslaved workforce, he aimed at developing the Approuague estuary area. In 1780, he was called back to Paris and travelled via Suriname and Amsterdam «with his mulatto boy Leander» (which he calls «his servant» in his Traité sur les terres noyées de la Guyane). He administered the spices plantation La Gabrielle, which belonged to the King of France. He owned two plantations, Trio and L’Esperance, and for the latter signed a treaty for the «delivery» of 110 slaves per annum from Angola and the Gold Coast. The village of Guisanbourgh on the Approuague River (abandoned today) bears testimony to his presence. He returned to Switzerland in 1791 to become «inspector general for roads and bridges» of the short-lived Helvetian Republic.

=> In 1810, the cantonal authorities of Zurich dealt with a number of complaints from local trading houses on account of the conflict between France and Britain («continental blockade») which led to sequestrations. The goods concerned were, among others, long fiber cotton from Guyana and precious woods («bois satiné») from Cayenne.

=> In 1896, Swiss neuroanatomist, psychiatrist and eugenicist Auguste Forel (1848–1931) took a trip through the Caribbean on the private yacht of a French count. In Martinique he visited the «cruel negro king of Dahomey» (Béhanzin, the eleventh King of Dahomey, ca. 1845–1906), who was held prisoner there by the French. Forel gave Béhanzin, whom he described as «the fat and somewhat daft looking king», cigars and noticed that the «the fallen ruler from tropical West Africa was accompanied by two very pretty looking negro women».

2.4 Danish West Indies (colonies «St. John
», «St. Croix», «St. Eustaches», and «St. Thomas»)

=> The Swiss bank «Leu» from Zurich, which was half private and half statal (it managed the finances of the city state of Zurich) held shares of the French «Compagnie des Indes». In 1760, together with Geneva investors, «Leu» participated in a Danish bond issue which was meant to finance the acquisition of the islands of St. John, St. Croix and St. Thomas. In 1769, «Leu» participated in a plantation business on St. Croix: Reinhard Iselin brokered a loan of 42,000 guilders from the Swiss bank «Leu» from Zurich for the Brown brothers (John and David), for which a plantation was used as collateral. In 1768, 1772, and 1780, Bank Leu gave credits to «Jacob Ambrosius Pool et Compagnie» in Amsterdam.

=> Reinhard Iselin (1714-1781), Swiss-born Danish merchant originally from Bâle and a customer of the Swiss bank «Leu» from Zurich, was a ship-owner and an arms and indiennes manufacturer. In 1749, he founded «Reinhard Iselin & Co.» in Copenhagen. The company completed 65 expeditions to the Danish West Indies, where he operated a large sugar refinery. He was also active in the Danish Africa Company which was founded at the initiative of Count Johann Hartwig Ernst von Bernstorff. He belonged to the circle of merchants that Bernstorff relied on for state loans. His successor was Caspar Hauser (1741–1824), also from Bâle, who became director of the «Danish West India Company».

=> According to the Royal Danish State Archive in Copenhagen, the following Swiss at one time lived in the Danish Virgin Islands: A. Allegrin (citizenship, census 1850); Gerhard Henr. (born Switzerland 1736, died 1813 St. Croix); Christopher Liebesberg (born Switzerland 1688, St. Thomas); Hans Ulrich Passavant (St. Croix); Reinhard Iselin (baron).

=> In 1757, Urbain Roger (1726–1791) from a Huguenot family, became a citizen of Geneva. In 1760, as a banker, he arranged a loan of 1,500,000 pound for the Danish crown (King Frederick V) for the acquisition of the West Indian islands and colonies St. Thomas (best known for its slave market), St. John, and St. Croix. In 1780, he arranged another loan, this time with money chiefly from Zurich and Berne, for the Danish fleet, which was supposed to escort to slave ships. In his 1762 publication «The Present State of Denmark», co-authored with his cousin Élie-Salomon-François Reverdil (1732–1808), who was from Nyon in the Canton of Berne/Vaud, Urbain Roger mentioned «cloths, linen, spices and other merchandise wanted in Africa from Europe» and he praised the commerce of the West Indies as being «extremely advantageous to the Danes».

=> In the 1770s, Reinhard Iselin motivated Salomon Kitt (1744-1825), merchant from Zurich, to establish on St. Thomas and St. Eustaches a company for the import of silk from Zurich and other European textiles. Kitt went to St. Eustaches in 1779, a hub under the Dutch ideology of free trade (textiles, indiennes, hats, pots, coffee, sugar, tobacco, slaves), where in 1780, he founded a company together with Friedrich Rheinwald. The company did business with merchants in Zurich (Trachsler), St.Gallen (Zollikofer), Aarau and Basel (Herzog, Hunziker und Hagenbach). Kitt&Rheinwald exported coffee from Marie-Galante and sugar from Saint-Domingue. In 1781, when the British occupied the island, he moved to St. Thomas, where he cooperated with Johannes Iselin as «KittIselin & Co.». St.Thomas became the next free-trade hub under Dutch control. Their trading partners in Saint-Domingue, Armand et Raynaud Fils recommended them to trade in slaves. In 1783, Salomon Kitt left the Caribbean for New England where he tried his hand as a real estate agent and large landowner on the frontier. 

=> In 1805, Hans Conrad von Orelli, merchant from Zurich, undertook a trip from Livorno to St. Martin, St. Barthélemy, and St. Thomas to explore the possibilities of the silk and indiennes trade.

=> The Moravian missionaries settled in the Danish West Indies starting in 1732, and established the stations New Herrnhut and Niesky on St. Thomas; Friedensberg, Friedensthal, and Friedensfield on St. Croix; and Bethany and Emmaus on St. John. They became planters and slave owners, based on the biblical words that everyone in the pyramid of society should subject themselves to their masters. On St. Thomas, they obtained a plantation with 9 slaves in 1738. In a register of the Danish Westindian Islands (the Virgin Islands) of 1650– ca. 1825, one Hans Ulrich Passavant is noted as having been married to Louise Dupuget, with children Johannes Paulus (1777), Maria (1780), and Lucas (1782). Hans Ulrich Passvant worked for Frederik Christian Moth, governor of the Danish West Indies from 1770–1772 and son of Frederick Moth (1694–1746), Dano-Norwegian merchant, governor-general of several Danish colonies, governor of the Danish West India Company, and plantation-owner.

=> In 1733, approximately 150 Akwamu slaves staged a rebellion on the island of St. John. The slaves, who outnumbered the colonists at a rate of nearly 5:1, took control of the fort at St. John’s Coral Bay and proceeded to take possession of the plantations. The Danes called the French for help, and among the troops that arrived from Martinique and brutally put down the rebellion were Swiss mercenary soldiers, too.

=> In 1842, Swiss merchant Robert Lutz (1823-1843), Jakob Laurenz Gsell’s uncle, owned a domestic slave in St. Thomas.

2.5 Venezuela

=> In 1528, Hieronymus Sailer (1495-1559) from St.Gallen (E Switzerland), together with Heinrich Ehinger from Konstanz, was contractor of the second asiento do negros , i.e. a royal charter authorising the transportation of slaves directly from Africa to the Americas for the sum of 20,000 ducats. The contract with King Charles V of Spain gave him the right to «export» 4000 slaves from Portuguese Guinea to Venezuela, which was to be colonized by the Welser company from Augsburg.

2.6 Bermudas

=> Friedrich Ludwig Im Thurn‏‎ (1779-1831) from a Schaffhausen family was in the service of the British in the rank of a major. From 1821 on, he was was deputy commander of the royal garrison in Bermuda. His daughter Mary Catherine Ellen Im Thurn (1823-1895) was born in Bermuda. Commander of the Bermuda garrison from 1821-1824 was Jean Pierre Galiffe (1767-1847) from a Geneva family of Huguenots

3. BEYOND THE CARIBBEAN (under construction)

Since this «Caricom Compilation» is more and more developing into a comprehensive description of overall Swiss involvement in colonialism and transatlantic slavery, I am also including some areas beyond the Caribbean in order to facilitate research. Moreover, historians have always pointed out that transatlantic chattel slavery was one single economic system and that there were numerous relationships and links between the core Caribbean and the slave-based economies of North and South America. Thus, Charleston and surrounding areas in South Carolina were first settled with three shiploads of emigrants from Barbados and Bermuda. The «plantation lifestyle» imported from the Caribbean certainly insisted on the use of slavery, and Charleston quickly became the port-of-entry for the majority of all black slaves into the English colonies. How interconnected the slavery-economies of North America, the Caribbean and Brazil (and beyond) were, is also demonstrated by the fact that several Swiss families globalised into more than one space: Escher, HugueninFlournoy, Rosenberg(er), Prevost and Fatio (North America and Caribbean), Treytorrens, von Waldkirch and Stürler (West Indies and East Indies), De Meuron and Staehelin (Caribbean and Brazil), and Cazenove/Cazeneuve, Zollikofer, and Zübli/Zubli/Zubly (Caribbean, North America and East Indies).

3.1 North America
(The Thirteen Colonies and the United States)

To be involved in slavery could mean ownership of plantations, ownership of slaves, activities in the slave-trade, profiting from trade with slavery-based commodities, and fighting on the Confederate side in the Civil War (where many Southern officers took their servants, i.e. their slaves with them). Preceding all of this was the displacement, enslavement, or killing of indigenous people in order to win land for settlements and plantations. In this part of the archive it is often difficult to assign members of Swiss emigrant families and their descendants to one particular state, because they tended to move to another area over time, in some cases even to a third place. All in all, about 25,000 Swiss immigrants settled in the United States between 1700 and 1776, and they directed their course mainly to Pennsylvania and Carolina, which they commonly believed to be parts of the West India Islands.

The following officers with Swiss backgrounds fought in the Civil Wart on the Confederate side and are listed here because they cannot really be attributed to one state or region: George A. Euler from Basel-Stadt was captain and commander and Samuel Fasnacht from Fribourg Confederate first lieutenant of the Swiss Guard of  Sharpshooters, Third Regiment, European Brigade, Louisiana Militia («Garde Française»). Felix Kirk Zollicoffer von Altenklingen (1812–1862) from the «Georgian branch» or «georgische Linie» of a St.Gallen / Thurgau family gained military experience as a second lieutenant in the Second Semiole War (1835–1842), when the US government tried to relocated 4,000 Seminole people and most of their 800 Black Seminole allies in Florida. He became a brigadier general and led the first Confederate invasion of eastern Kentucky. He was killed in action, and a monument was erected for him near Nancy, Kentucky, in 1910. Joseph Eberle (1828–1877), born in Walenstadt, Canton of St.Gallen, emigrated to Texas and served as a confederate captain or major in the Arkansas Infantry. Getulius Kellersberger (1820–1900) from Baden in the Canton of Aarau (Berne) emigrated to New York and served the Confederacy as chief engineer in East Texas. He moved his engineering companies and a thousand slaves to fortify and obstruct rivers and streams of his district. In Galveston, 1,000 slaves and 300 (non-English speaking) German mechanics were put at his disposal. In March 1863, Major Kellersberger was ordered to Sabine Pass with thirty engineers and 500 slaves to build a new fort in order to block access to Galveston. He was promoted to lieutenant colonel in 1865. He returned to Switzerland after the war and was the only Confederate veteran among the sixteen men who attended the first of two meetings of Civil War veterans that convened in Luzern in January 1899. He died in Baden, where he is buried.

Having said this, one must also point out that even more officers with Swiss backgrounds fought on the side of the Union.

=> Ulrich Maron (born 1828) from Berlingen am Untersee in the Canton of Thurgau did an apprenticeship as a tanner. After two journeyman years, business was low and he allowed himself to be recruited as a mercenary for the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies. In 1859, the Swiss regiments in foreign service were disbanded, and on his way home, Maron entered the service of the Koninklijk Nederlandsch-Indisch Leger (Royal Netherlands East Indies Army). Soon, he was among the best sharpshooter in Batavia. In 1864, he paid a short visit to his home village of Berlingen before moving on to become a plantation overseer in the USA. In the country which was in the midst of the Civil War, he fell ill with malaria and returned to his home in the canton of Thurgau, which (according to an obituary) saved his life. In 1869, he took the job of housekeepr/caretaker in the «Institut Zollikofer», a girls› boarding school in Romanshorn, where he stayed for many years.

3.1.1 Alabama

=> Members of the Ott family from Guttannen (BE) migrated from Orangeburgh to Alabama, where in 1860, they are recorded as owning 46 slaves.

=> John F. Phifer (*1810), grandson of Martin Phifer Jr. (1756–1837) from North Carolina, owned 68 slaves on a cotton plantation in Lowndes, Alabama.

=> Members of the Rumpf family from the Canton of Berne migrated from Orangeburgh to Alabama: Thomas David Rumph in 1823 later James D. Rumph. In 1860, the family was recorded to have owned 229 slaves.

=> Schläppi/Slappy/Slappey from Meiringen, Canton of Berne: In 1860 they are registered among the large slaveholders.

=> Rebsamen/Rebsome/Turnipseed from Turbenthal, Canton of Zurich: Bartholomew Turnipseed (b. 1818) was a son of Jacob Turnipseed, worked as a medical doctor and became the founder of the Alabama branch of his family. One Daniel Turnipseed owned 79 slaves on his estate. In 1860, the family was recorded to have owned 46 slaves.

=> Wettstein/Whetstone from Illnau, Canton of Zurich: Henry Whetstone, descendant of Hans Wettstein, moved from Orangeburgh to Alabama. In 1860, the Whetstone family of Alabama was recorded to have owned 230 slaves.

=> Irvin Holman Zimmermann (1813-1858) from a Zurich family was a wealthy doctor and plantation owner in Alabama. In 1850, 66 slaves were registered on a plantation belonging to Thomas J. Zimmermann and Charles P. Zimmermann.

=> Abraham Maury de Graffenried (1784–1859) from a family originally from Berne was one of the early settlers of Lawrence County, Alabama, where he was a large landholder.

=> According to the 1850 State Census, William Sturkey, who had left South Carolina with his household, owned 6 slaves in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

=> Robert Flournoy (1826-1896) originally from a Geneva family of Huguenots, married Eugenia Moffet (1836–1902) in 1855, and the couple lived in Russell County, Alabama, on acquired and inherited land. According to Jacqueline Jordan Irvine of Emory University («From Cotton to Coca-Cola: A Family History Case Study on the Limitations of Higher Education to Close the Generational Wealth Gap») stolen Creek Indian land and slave labour in the 1800s were the sources of intergenerational wealth for four connected White families from bordering Alabama and Georgia counties – among them the Moffetts and the Flournoys. «With the federal government gifts of stolen Indian land and slave labour and subsequent inheritances, marriages among them, kinship relationships, and nepotism, the four White families for centuries acquired and maintained wealth, privilege, and influence that have continued to benefit significantly their descendants.» The 1860 census recorded that Henry Moffett (1795-1860) owned 96 slaves in 22 slave houses; his son-in-law, Robert Flournoy, had 83 slaves in 35 slave houses; and Henry’s son, Charles, had 17 slaves in 6 houses. Together the Moffett-Flournoy family owned thousands of acres of land and 200 slaves in 63 quarters.

3.1.2 Arkansas

=> In 1850, one William H. Zollicoffer from a Swiss family originally from St.Gallen/Thurgau owned one 45-year-old male slave in Jefferson, Arkansas.

3.1.3 California

=> Johann August Sutter (1803–1880) was a German-born Swiss immigrant of Mexican and American citizenship, who is well known for establishing his private colony «New Helvetia» ( Sutter’s Fort) in the area that would later become Sacramento, California, the state’s capital. Sutter had enslaved native Americans of the Miwok and Maidu tribes and Hawaiians (Kanakas) to work for him. If native Americans refused work, Sutter responded with violence: He had them whipped in the middle of his fort. He traded in native American slaves, especially children. He kept 600–800 indigenous people in a state of absolute slavery. At night, they were locked up in barren rooms with no beds and no toilet facilities. There are indications by his overseer Heinrich Lienhard (1822–1903), who came from Bilten (Canton of Glarus), that Sutter kept a whole group of indigenous women and girls to be of sexual service to him.

3.1.4 The Carolinas

Between 1732 and 1744, more than a thousand German speaking Swiss emigrated to the Carolinas, motivated by reports of opportunities and wealth. A Swiss immigrant remarked in 1737 that «Carolina looks more like a Negro country than a country settled by white people.» Quite a few of those Swiss immigrants became wealthy and respected planters, making their way into the élite of the South. In Switzerland, the trend towards emigration was so big that people talked about the «Carolina Rabies» or the «Carolina Fever», with some cantons encouraging migration, some advising against or or even prohibiting it. Granting land to these settlers on their arrival (from 40 acres per person upwards) meant displacing, fighting and sometimes enslaving the local indigenous Americans. The main settling areas or «Swiss» or partly «Swiss» colonies in the Carolinas were New Berne (today Craven County in North Carolina), Purrysburg (today Jasper County on the South Carolina bank of the Savannah River), French Santee (along the banks of the Santee River, 40 miles north of Charleston, South Carolina), New Windsor Township (opposite Augusta on the Savannah River, later Orangeburgh District, South Carolina, where present-day towns of North Augusta and Beech Island are situated), and Amelia Township on the south side of the Congaree River (later Orangeburgh District, today Calhoun County, South Carolina).

In many cases, it has not been possible to establish slave ownership already in the first generation of Swiss immigrants. But it is highly unlikely that allotted lands of 300, 400 or 500 acres could have been cultivated without enslaved labour. 1 acre either equals 4,294 square meters (as in the Caribbean) or 4,047 square meters (as in British North America). In either case, a 500 acres estate would correspond to over 2 million square meters. It has to be added that the land granted to Swiss immigrants was by no means «no man’s land», but it had   been home to the Congaree Tribe in the Calhoun County area, for example.

=> Christoph von Graffenried (1661–1743) from a Bernese patrician family was influenced by the reports of compatriot Franz Louis Michel (ca. 1680–1714) about prospects in the «New World». Von Graffenried sailed to Carolina in 1710, founded the colony of «New Berne», thus displacing an American Indian town named Chattoka, became a slave-owner, and fought the Tuscaroras in a war that claimed some 400 native lives. He returned to Switzerland in 1714, but his son Christopher DeGraffenried Jr (1691-1742) stayed in British America and became the founder of a widespread family, many of them slaveholders. Tscharner Hobson DeGraffenreid (1806–1860), Christopher de Graffenreid Jr.’s grandson, owned the «opulent» plantation Oakland on Sandy River im Chester County, South Carolina. The 1860 Slave Schedule registered 108 slaves there. His sister Sarah DeGraffenreid married Richard Evans Kennedy (1811-1855), who also owned a plantation in Chester County. In 1860, there were slave 123 slaves registered there. John Baker DeGraffenried (1823-1899) owned Alston-DeGraffenried Plantation with 47 slaves west of Pittsboro in Chatham County, North Carolina. He was married to Delia Alston (1829-1914), daughter of one of the area’s biggest plantation and slave-owners. At the centre of the plantation stood the plantation house, known today as DeGraffenreidt-Johnson House and listed in the National Register of Historic Places as one of the finest examples of the Greek Revival style in the county. Allen deGraffenreid (1794–1844) was a widower and a wealthy planter and slaveholder in Chester County. «Yellow John», a runaway slave of his, murdered him in 1844, and with two other slaves, robbed the house. The three were captured, tried, and executed on the gallows.

=> Martin Stähelin (1714–1756) from a patrician Basel family was a a merchant and a tobacco-producer, who, after a bankruptcy and time in prison, emigrated to «New Berne» in 1753.

=> Pierre Robert (II) (1656–1715) from St Imier, Neuchatel, immigrated to South Carolina with his wife Jeanne Braye and his son Pierre Jr. (1675–1731), who was born in Basel. They settled in the Beaufort Disctrict in 1686, then moved further north to French Santee. They were granted 500 acres of land by the Lord Proprietors, and Pierre Robert became the first Huguenot pastor in South Carolina. Until the Revolutionary the principal occupation of the Huguenot settlers was the culture of rice and indigo. «Long cane» cotton was introduced in to the province as late as 1770. Jacques (James) Robert (1711-1774), son of Pierre Jr., became wealthy and at one time owned four plantations in Santee, South Carolina. He operated a store at the same time. A year after his death, his widowed wife Sarah (Jaudon) Robert moved with most of her children and other members of her family to Black Swamp, near the Savannah River. There they founded the town of Robertville. Six of her seven children reached maturity, married and left numerous descendants in Virginia, Georgia, Alabama and Arkansas.

=> In 1739, brothers Jeremiah (1716–1774), Simeon (b. 1719 or 1720) and Christianus Theus (1717– ca. 1791) from Felsberg in the Canton of Grisons, emigrated from Chur (GR) and arrived in the Carolinas, probably with their parents Simeon Theus and Anna Walser. Jeremiah became a portrait painter popular among plantation owners (like the Balls, Elliotts, Gibbeses, Heywards, Manigaults, Mazycks, Ravenels, and Habershams), of whom he must have painted around 200 portraits. When he died, he left a house in Charleston, a plantation in Orangeburgh and 7 slaves. His brother Simeon became a merchant and a landowner, his brother Christianus a Presbyterian minister and a landowner, too. One of their descendants, one James J. Theus from Beaufort, South Carolina, is registered in 1860 with 33 slaves.

=> Heinrich Escher-Zollikofer (1776–1853), father of Swiss industrialist and politician Alfred Escher (1819-1882), travelled to the USA with Hans Conrad Hottinger (17641841) in 1793. He stayed there as agent of «Hottinguer & Cie» until 1806. In 1804 he went to South Carolina, where he traded in cotton, tobacco, rice and coffee, and became immensely rich. 1806-1812 he worked for Hottinger’s company in Paris; 1812-1814 he was back in the USA, where he held a share in «one of the best tobacco plantations» (Escher) on the James River (Virginia). Escher knew Washington and Jefferson personally and corresponded with Secretary of War John Armstrong.

=> Jacob Christopher Zollikofer (1686-1779) from St.Gallen was Justice of the Peace and administrating landlord of the Castle and territories of Altenklingen (TG) and Pfauenmoos (SG). He emigrated to Virginia in 1717, then moved on to Halifax, North Carolina. In the 1760s, there was a rumour that he had died, whereupon several people – among them his son Captain George Zollicoffer from New Berne – testified that the «Switzer» of that name he was alive and well. Jacob Christopher Zollikofer became the founding father of a widespread family in British North America and the USA (Halifax, North Carolina / Maury and Nashville, Tennessee / Lafayette and Attala, Mississippi / Ellis and Hillsboro, Texas / Jefferson, Arkansas) many of them slaveholders. The Slave Census of 1850 lists 63 slaves owned by members of the Zollicoffer family. Moreover, there a numerous black Zollicoffers now in the US.

=> Jean (John) Conrad Zollickoffer (1742–1795) from St.Gallen arrived in America in 1777. He was a captain in the service of the French king and then a merchant in Baltimore. He was a cousin of Jacob Christopher Zollikofer. Before emigrating to America, he was closely associated with Pierre-Frédéric Dobrée, a merchant and shipowner from Nantes who supported the American Revolution, with the companies of «Schweighauser & Dobrée», which imported tobacco, sugar, coffee, tea, and cotton from the colonies, and with Deucher (a prominent banker in Paris, orginally from the Canton of Thurgau) and «Riedy & Cie.» (a large-scale slave-ship owner, orginally from Bâle). Moreover, Zollickoffer belonged to the same loge St-Germain as the slave-trader Prosper Charet and did business with him. Those Nantes connections still worked for Zollickofer after his emigration. In America, Zollickofer corresponded with George Washington.

=> George Bankcroft Zollicoffer (1738–1815) of Halifax County, North Carolina, stated in his will that his estate, i.e. «negroes and stock, household and kitchen furniture, plantation utensils, together with what money is due me in Switzerland» should be divided between his wife Anne Zollicoffer (1753–1827) and his five children John Jacob, George Bankcroft, James, Julius Hieronymus, and Anne. His wife Anne in her will of 1827 stated that «the four negroes Henry, Isham, Virgel and Horris and all my crop of corn, fodder and wheat and all my stock of horses, cattle and hogs» should go to her son James Zollicoffer.

=> Julius Hieronymous Zollicoffer(1786 – ca. 1854) decreed in his will manumission of his slaves Tom, Dick and Lydia with her two children Henry and Ritter, and of the child or children of the girl Ritter due to be born soon. For historians of slavery, manumission of an individual female slave and her children by testament usually points to an illegitimate relationship of whatever kind (rape, tactical relationship, love). Zollicoffer bequeathed his manumitted slaves the sum of 1000 $ for them to be transferred to a free state. His other slaves Horace, Jesse, Julia, Mack and Weldon were to be equally divided between his three children Jerome Bonaparte, Emily Caroline, and George.

=> Jean-Pierre (Hans Peter) (de) Pury (1675 – 1736) from Neuchâtel worked as a corporal for the Dutch East India Company. In 1718 he published Mémoire sur le Pays des Cafres and la Terre de Nuyts, in which he developed a concept of twelve climates between the North Pole and South Pole. He held the fifth climate (approximately 33 ° latitude) best for colonization. He hoped to be granted permission to start his own colonies in Australia or Southern Africa. His focus was on viticulture, and he propagated the use of slaves who would profit from the contact with civilisation. When his projects were dismissed, he left Batavia for France. He then developed a new colonisation project in South Carolina, and in 1724 suggested to the Duke of Newcastle to send 600 Swiss soldiers to the colony, who would breed silkworms as well as cultivate hemp and flax. These soldiers should, according to (de) Pury, be ready at one hour’s notice to fight against the «Indians» who often attacked the colony and destroyed plantations. In 1731, he sailed to North America and chose the area for the foundation of Purrysburg. In the colony settled by Swiss-French Huguenots, Swiss-German Lutherans, and Austrian and Italian protestant refugees, he owned and traded with slaves. The colony was relatively unsuccessful, and Pury died of malaria in 1736.

=> Johannes Tobler (1696–1765) from Appenzell Ausserrhoden emigrated to South Carolina and in 1737  founded a colony in the Orangeburgh/New Windsor area. He became a slave-owner himself and reported back to Switzerland in the Appenzeller Kalender in 1754:

«In South Carolina and its surroundings there is still a lot of good land left, and there are only few inhabitants […]. At the moment you pay for 100 acres of land or for a negro only half a Batz (Swiss currency) of your money. In wartime, the prices might be one third higher.»

In 1737, his father Ulrich Tobler is mentioned as having been granted 250 acres in New Windsor.

=> In his book «Der arme Mann im Tockenburg» (The pauper in the Toggenburg valley), first published in 1789, Ulrich Brägger (peasant, cotton spinner, weaver, middleman in the putting-out system) wrote about two of his neighbours:

«This is what I knew then: They were both heavily in debts and were hoping to be liberated from them by the end of the world; at least I often heard them talk about Newfoundland, Carolina, Pennsylvania and Virginia, some other time there were talking about getting away, about escape from captivity in Babylon, about costs of travel and such things.»

=> Members of the following non-aristocratic families emigrated to the Carolinas where they became plantation and slave owners:

• Am Acher / Amaker from Meiringen, Canton of Berne: In 1736, Hans Amaker received 300 acres for a plantation in Orangeburgh SC. Large plantations using slave labor were established in Orangeburg in the nineteenth century, and the county became a major producer of cotton. In 1860, there were 108 Europeans, 16,583 slaves, and 205 free Blacks in Orangeburgh District 8. Descendants of Hans Amaker owned 109 slaves in 1860.

• Bachmann/Baughman/Bookman/Bakman from Elgg (Canton of Zurich): Johann Jacob Bachmann (b. 1696) arrived in South Carolina in 1743 and was granted 200 acres in Craven County in 1749. His son William Jacob Bookman (1721–1778) with his wife Anna owned 5 slaves. Daniel, Joseph and Jesse Bookman, were fourth generation Americans and third generation in the Dutch Fork Section of South Carolina. The Bookmans had been there over 100 years, and now they were large slaveowners. In the 1869 Slave Census, members of the Bookman family are registered with 85 slaves.

• Bourquin/Bourguin from Switzerland (possibly from Sonceboz, Berne): They came to South Carolina in 1732 with Colonel John Pury and settled in Purysburg (also spelt Purrysburg). Henry François Bourquin (1693–1778) and Dr. Jean (John) Baptiste Bourquin (1691–1784) were probably brothers. John Baptiste was granted 300 acres, and one Mary Bourquin (probably his wife) 100 acres. John Lewis Bourquin Jr. was a merchant and a planter in Purysburg and the leader of the Bourquin community. He inherited from his father, Colonel John Lewis Bourquin (who had owned 45 slaves in 1794) a substantial estate of 26 slaves. Other members of the family moved to Georgia.

In the postwar years, there was a dramatic increase of slave ownershop in Purysburg. According to the 1790 Slave Census, families with slave ownership  were the Saussy (15), Waldburger (20), the Winkler (21), the Humbert (37), the Stroubhart (43), Cornelius Dupont (62), and David Erhardt (114). Who among them was of Swiss (and not French or German descent) has yet to be established.

• Denzler / Dantzler from Illnau, Canton of Zurich: Via Savannah (Georgia), the family arrived in Orangeburgh SC in 1752 and Hans Ulrich Dantzler received 400 acres for a plantation. In 1770, one John Henry Dantzler received 200 acres, in 1794, one John Dantzler 200 acres. Dr. Lewis H. Dantzler (1813 – 1878) was granted 704 acres in 1846 and built a plantation house that can still be seen today. Olin Miller Dantzler (1826–1924), son of Jacob M. Dantzler and a direct descendant of Hans Ulrich, was a rich plantation owner in St. Mathews, Calhoun County, Orangeburgh District. In 1860, he owned 101 slaves. He was a member of the House of Representatives and later of the Senate of South Carolina. He fought in the Civil War on the Confederate side. In 1864 he held the rank of colonel in the 22nd South Carolina Regiment. He was killed in action in 1864. In 1860, the descendants of Hans Ulrich Dantzler were registered as owning a total of 571 slaves. There is still a Dantzler Street in Orangeburgh today.

• Eichelberger/Eickelberger originally from Wynau in the Canton of Berne: In 1752, Johann George Eichelberger (1729-1805) emigrated via Rotterdam to Charleston S.C. aboard the ship «Upton». He lived on a plantation near Pomaria, Dutch Fork, Newberry County, S.C. His grandson John Adam Eickelberger (1810–1896) lived on a plantation near Martin’s depot and in 1860 owned 108 slaves. He was married to Emma Lenora Long (1818 – 1896), whose grandfather George Lang/Long (1758–1815) had immigrated from Oberraat, Canton of Zurich, in 1752 on board the «Caledonia» and had written into his last will in 1815: «I give and bequeath unto my well beloved wife Catharine the plantation whereon I now live […] one negro fellow named Sam and one wench named Mina and two children Esther and Sarah». 

• Felder from Wattwil in the Canton of St.Gallen and possibly also from Zurich: The family of Heinrich Felder (1725 ­–1780) emigrated to the American colonies, arriving about 1735. In later records he was referred to as Captain Henry Felder, planter. Ann Margaret (Felder) Hartzog (1774–1851) owned 22 slaves (1830 Census), 38 slaves (1840 Census), and 44 slaves (1850 Census) in Orangeburgh. Major John Myers Felder (1782–1851), whose grandfather was a native of Switzerland, was a United States politician and a lawyer. When he retired from the legal profession in 1830, he became a prosperous mill owner and planter. The 1850 Slave Census records him with 187 slaves. He owned the cotton plantation Midway. James Addison Felder (1841-1893) of Orangeburgh was a direct descendant in the fifth generation of Swiss immigrants to South Carolina. He served in the Confederate army during the Civil War. Descendants and relatives of the Felder family are also recorded in Georgia, Virginia, Florida, Texas, and Nevada. The 1869 Slave Census records some 1300 slaves belonging to somebody called Felder.

• Gallman/Coleman from Mettmenstetten, Canton of Zurich: In 1836, Hans Jacob Gallman received 350 acres for a plantation in Saxe Gotha in Orangeburgh SC. In 1860, his descendants in Newberry SC were registered as owners of 115slaves.

• Gyger/Geiger from the Rheintal area (later Canton of St.Gallen): The Geiger families emigrated in 1737 under the leadership of Johann Ulrich Giessendanner. They landed in Charleston in 1737, and 24 members of the extended Geiger family went straight to Saxegotha Township. Hans Jacob Geiger (born 1679) was granted 350 acres in 1742. The family grew and spread, and by 1860 (Slave Census), members of the extended Geiger family owned a total of 305 slaves.

• Horger from Guttannen, Canton of Berne: Heinrich Horger (ca. 1671–1760) emigrated with his wife and five children to Orangeburgh SC, and received 350 acres for a plantation. In 1860, his descendant David Horger was registered as owning 83 slaves. Today, there still is a Horger Street in Orangeburgh.

Inäbnit/Inabnet from Grindelwald, Canton of Berne: Hans Inäbnit and his wife Maria with five children emigrated to Orangeburgh, South Carolina, in 1735, with the father dying aboard the ship «Samuel». The family received 250 acres for a plantation, and the grandchildren BalthasarChristian, and Peter became plantation owners, too. In 1860, the descendants of the family are recorded as owning 274 slaves. Eliza Inabinet (1815–1882), born in Orangeburg, South Carolina, in 1815 to Andrew Inabinet (1783–1839) and Ann Margaret «Nancy» Whetstone (1786–1859) married Lewis O’Bryan in 1853 and had 7 children. She passed away in 1882 in Walterboro, Colleton, South Carolina, USA. Colonel Lewis O’Bryan (1808–1860) owned the rice plantation Round O. He was State Representative, State Senator, and Delegate to the pro-slavery «Southern Rights Convention» in 1852. In 1860, he owned 123 slaves at Round O plantation, St. Bartholomew’s Parish, Colleton Dictrict, S.C.

• Gindrat/Gindra/Jindra/Jinright from Tramelan (Canton of Berne): Abraham Gindrat (1713–1767) emigrated to South Carolina. Among his descendants were his son Daniel Henry Gindrat, (1740–1801) and his grandson Abraham Gindrat (1764–1815), born in Purysburg. Later members of the family moved to Georgia. Others (Gindrat, Jinright) are recorded in the 1860 Slave Census in Kentucky, Alabama and Texas, owning 26 slaves.

• Keller from Arisdorf, Canton of Basel-Landschaft: Martin Keller received land for a plantation in Orangeburgh SC in 1737. In 1860, the descendants of the family were recorded as owning 159 slaves.

• Koller/Culler from the Canton of Berne: Being a bachelor, Benedict Koller only received 50 acres in Orangeburgh in 1735. His descendant Jacob Culler (1780 – 1858) owned 7000 acres cotton, indigo and rice plantation which was destroyed in the Civil War. Culler descendants are registered in the 1860 Slace Census with 70 slaves.

Künzler/Kuntzler/Kinsler from the Canton of St.Gallen): Hans Conrad Kuntzler (christened in St. Margrethen in 1709) was allotted land in the new township Congaree. John Herman Kinsler (1823-1902) owned a plantation and moved his family and 14 slaves to Florida before the Civil War. In the 1860 Slave Census, members of the Kinsler family are recorded as owning 123 slaves.

Müller/Miller from Bâle: In 1735, the family of Jacob and Catharina Elisabeth Müller were alllocated 100 acres for a plantation in Orangeburgh SC.

• Murer/Moorer from the Simmental in the Canton of Berne: Peter Murer (b. 1684) and his family emigrated via Charleston to Orangeburgh, where they were allocated 150 acres for a plantation. In 1860, the descendants of the family were recorded as owning 209 slaves.

• Jasper Nagel/Nail received a land grant of 400 acres in 1738 along with his fellow Swiss. He was the father of three sons, Daniel, Hans Conrad, and Casper, as well as two daughters, whose names are unknown. Daniel Nail, the eldest, inherited his father’s estate and ran a very large-scale farming and blacksmith operation in the New Windsor area. He died in 1772 when his children were young, and left a sizeable estate to his wife, which included 750 acres, 22 slaves, 100 pigs, 62 sheep, 3,150 bushels of Indian corn, 50 pounds of wool, and more. Casper Nail lived the longest and was also a successful planter.

Ott from Guttannen, Canton of Berne: The ship on which Melchior Ott with his family were travelling was captured by the Spanish and they were taken to Havan (Cuba). After two years in prison, they arrived in Orangeburgh in 1746, penniless. In 1751 they were allocated 350 acres for a plantation. In 1860, the descendants of the family were recorded as owning 89 slaves.

• Pfeiffer/Phifer from Häfelfingen, Canton of Basel Landschaft: Martin Pfeiffer (1720-1791) emigrated to Philadelphia via Rotterdam in 1736. In the 1750s, Martin Phifer moved to North Carolina, where he moved up in the local militia to the rank of Major and became a member of the the state legislature. He owed his wealth to his three plantations near Concorde and to his grain mill. He left his plantations to his three sons: Red Hill to John (1747–78), an unknown plantation to Caleb (1749–1811) and Cold Water to Martin Jr. (1756–1837). His will mentions 18 slaves, who were left to his wife, to his grandchildren Magret and Paul and to his children. In 1850, the descendants of the family in the Concord area were recorded as owning 94 slaves.

Rebsamen/Rebsome/Turnipseed from Turbenthal, Canton of Zurich: Hans and Beat Rebsamen migrated to South Caroline. In 1751, Hans Rebsome applied for 50 acres for a plantation in the Saxe-Gotha township area. In 1860, the descendants of the family were recorded as owning 132 slaves.

Rickenbacher(Rickenbacker/Rickenbaker from Runenberg (Canton of Basellandschaft): Heinrich Rickenbacher (1690–1739) with his wife Anna Bürgi arrived in Orangeburgh in 1735. They were granted 350 acres, which on his death went to son Heini. One Samuel Rickenbacker (1760–after 1820) appears in the 1820 census as owning 26 slaves. In the 1860 Slave Census, members of the Rickenbacker family are recorded with a total of 19 slaves.

Rumpf/Rumph from the Canton of Berne (possibly from Frutigen): The siblings David, Jacob, Abraham, Peter, and Catherine Rumph received 350 acres of land for as plantation in Orangeburgh SC. Jacob Rumph (1752–1812) became a captain in the American militia fighting the British. Later he was promoted to Brigadier General and became a member of the South Carolina House of Representatives. He lived on Pine Grove Plantation, South Carolina. His son Lewis Rumph (1793–1862) owned a 5000 acre plantation in the Orangeburgh area and was married to one Rachel Amaker. In 1860, the descendants of the family were recorded as owning 117 slaves.

Säli/Salley/ Zaley from Zeglingen, Canton of Basel-Landschaft: Heinrich Säli with his wife Maria emigrated from Sissach (BL) to Orangeburgh, where they were granted 200 acres for a plantation. Their sons Henry and Martin soon owned plantations of their own. In 1860, the descendants of the family were recorded as owning 127 slaves.

Schuler/Shuler from Ferenbalm, Canton of Berne: The families of Hans Jörg Schuler (b. 1691) and his brother Johann Jakob Schuler (b. 1693) migrated to Orangeburgh, where they were allocated 400 acres for a plantation. In 1860, the descendants of the family were recorded as owning 408 slaves in the Orangenburgh district. In 1859, plantation Four Hole Place, St James Goose Creek Parish, Charleston, South Carolina, belonged to the family of Frederick Shuler (1794-1864), who was related to the Dantzler family, together with 117 slaves. In 1860, there were 518 Shuler slaves recorded in the Slave Census.

• Sterchi/Sturkie/Sturkey from Interlaken (Canton of Berne): Ulrich Sterchi (baptised 1694) and other members of his family emigrated to Orangeburgh in the 1750s, where they were granted land and became plantation owners. According to the 1820 census, one William Sturkey owned 4 slaves and 5 slaves in 1840. In the 1860 Slave Census, members of the Sturkey family are registered with a total of 21 slaves.

George Straubhaar (Stroubhart, Strobhar) from a Swiss family received 450 acres in Granville County, St. Peter’s Parish, near Purrysburg in 1765. In 1767, one J. Stroubhart was the richest person in Purrysburg: He estate was worth 13,000 £, and he owned 22 slaves.

Strauman/Stroman from Waldenburg, Canton of Basel-Landschaft: Balthasar Straumann with his family and the unmarried Heinrich Straumann arrived in Orangeburgh via Charleston and were granted 300 + 50 acres for two plantations. One John Stromann was granted 200 acres in 1735, one Henry Stroman 250 acres in 1762. One Jacob Stroman owned the plantation Rocky Swamp with 150 slaves. In 1860, the descendants of the family were recorded as owning 265 slaves. Captain John Stroman Jennings (1808-1887) of Cedar Grove, a South Edisto River plantation in the Orangeburg District, owned a large lumber and sawmill. He fought for the Confederate troops in the rank of a captain, and he owned 182 slaves in 1860. The 1860 Slave Census records 265 slaves in the hands of members of the Stroman family.

• John Jacob (Johann Jakob) Sturzenegger was part of the Tobler group of emigrants from the Appenzell area. He received a land grant of 200 acres in New Windsor in 1737. He was probably married to Elizabeth Tobler, daughter of Johannes Tobler. Their children were Catrina and John Sturzenegger (ca. 1740–1792), who was granted 100 acres in 1765. 

Also part of the Tobler group were the Meyer brothers, Leonard, Ulric, and Michael. They applied for and received a land grant of 100 acres on the Savannah River in 1737. Although little is known about the whereabouts of Leonard and Ulric (they may have died soon after their arrival as many Swiss did), Michael’s descendants are very numerous. He successfully received three other land grants, one of which was his 390 acre plantation situated on the Savannah River.

• Jacob Waldburger (died 1770) of St. Peter’s Parish, Granville County, South Carolina, was born in Switzerland. His will was dated January 9, 1769 and probated on March 22, 1770.  He had owned 21 slaves in Purrysburg. In 1767, he announced in the South Carolina Gazette that he was looking for «a middle-sized Negro fellow named George, of the Guinea country», who had «several marks of punishment on his back» and who had late been the property of Mr. Zouberbuhler. Jacob might have been a descendant of Daniel Waldburger from Teufen (Canton of Appenzell Ausserhoden), who had followed  Johannes Tobler to South Carolina to establish a colony. Daniel Waldburger had been a successful businessman and had owned land and slaves.

• Wettstein/Whetstone from Illnau, Canton of Zurich: Hans Wettstein (b. 1699) with his family and that of his sister Anna, who was married to Conrad Denzler. migrated to Orangeburgh, where they were allocated 250 acres in 1738 and another 300 acres in 1749 for a plantation. In 1771, one Henry Whetstone was granted 300 acres. In 1860, Whetstone family members are recorded with a total of 17 slaves.

Zimmermann from the Canton of Zurich (possibly from Illnau): In 1752, Martin Zimmermann landed in Charleston, South Carolina, on board the «Cunliffe». In 1773, one Mi Zimmermann was granted 300 acres in Amelia Township. John Conrad Zimmermann (1802-1987) inherited plantation Rosemount in Spartanburg County, South Carolina, from his uncle and enlarged it. In 1860, 107 slaves were registered there. He also owned «Glendale Mill», a cotton factory. Thomas Holman Zimmermann (1816-1886) inherited Oakland plantation from his father in Orangeburgh County. In 1850, 72 slaves were registered there. In 1850, Russel Zimmerman (1817-1888) owned a plantation with 60 slaves in Orangeburg County. Mary Margaret Holman Zimmermann (1820-1906) married Dr. Lewis Dantzler, a medical doctor and plantation owner. His plantation in Wells, Orangeburgh County, was registered with 89 slaves in 1860. Members of the Zimmermann family were recorded in the 1860 Slave Census as owning a total of 426 slaves.

Züblin/Zubly/Zublin/Zubley/Sibley from St.Gallen: David Zublin Jr. (ca. 1700–1753) emigrated to South Carolina and settled near the Savannah River in 1736. His son Johann Joachim Zubly (1724– 1781) was ordained to the Reformed Church ministry in London in 1744. He then emigrated to South Carolina, too. In 1746, he married Anna Tobler, daughter of Appenzell Ausserrhoden governor and later New Windsor Township founder Johannes Tobler. In 1757 he was granted 186 acres of land. In 1760, he accepted a call to the Independent Church in Savannah, Georgia. He acquired considerable land in South Carolina and Georgia, and with enslaved workers produced rice and indigo. In 1762, one Daniel Zubley was granted 250 acres. In 1778, he noted: «Sent my tax list to Sav [Savannah]: 18 Negroes, lands including Plantations possessd by my son & son in Law (1720 Acres + 1350 acres, the Brickhouse now used as a Hospital, trust Lott & wharf contguous to Mr. Clay for Estate of J. W, Say 1250 Acres of Land, a Lott in the Village of St. Gall unimprovd & £2000 at Interest.» David Zubly III (1738 – 1790), another son of David Zublin Jr., was born in Purysburg. He was granted 250 acres in Granville County, New Windsor Township, on the waters of Savannah river in 1765. A mortgage record of 1768 shows that he used the 250 acres as well as slaves as bond. He was also a merchant. By 1774, he was a Justice of the Peace at New Windsor and by the 1780s had amassed an estate in excess of 5,000 acres. Originally studying medicine, it appears he eventually settled on life as a planter. He left behind five wealthy daughters which, although they did not carry the Zubly name, comprise one of the largest groups of Swiss descendants in the present Beech Island area. John Joachim Zubly’s son David Zubly (1748–1792) was born in Purysburg and became a soldier, public official and landowner. Being a loyalist to the British side, he was arrested in 1776. His father died in 1781 and left him one third of the huge family estate, but in 1782, the victorious Americans banished him and seized his property. David Zubly, who according to the British Record Office owned «16 black adult males, 12 black adult females, and 4 negro children», went to British East Florida, where he was registered as an auctioneer and a schoolmaster in 1783. In 1784, the family left for Nassau in the Bahamas. From there he claimed his father’s 2,500 acres in South Carolina and Georgia (including the 60 acres estate St Gall one mile outside Savannah, where rice was grown on 40 acres). But the rebels had destroyed a lot of his property and taken 11 of his slaves. In the Bahamas, he acquired a plantation, either on Cat Island or San Salvador (Watling Island). In 1785, he advertised in the «Bahama Gazette» for a fugitive, «a certain short stout black Negro Fellow named Robin», to be delivered to him, and offered his services «for the education of youth, in Reading, Writing, and Arithmetic: Also, Latin, Greek, and Geography». In 1788, his three children Helena, John Joachim, and Elizabeth were granted land adjoining the Cat Island plantation.

=> David Huguenin (1672–1735) from Le Locle (Canton of Neuchâtel) emigrated to the Carolinas in 1732 in the context of the foundation of Purrysburg. He settled in the Savannah River area and owned at least 800 acres. His son David Huguenin (1724–1796), also born in Le Locle, in 1782 bought Roseland Plantation in Jasper County (800 acres) and became a rich producer of cotton with many slaves. He also became the «founding father» of an extended family (about 1000 persons), which spread in the South. Members of the family administered the largest rice-plantation on the banks of the Coosawhatchie River. The Huguenins also owned Spring Hill plantation, between Coosawatchie and Ridgeland. Together the family owned more than 25,000 acres in present-day Jasper County. One of the descendants, Julius Gillison Huguenin (1806–1862), owned 329 slaves on a 1900 acres plantation. Another of his descendants, Cornelius M. Huguenin (1817-1856), ran Roseland Plantation with 268 Slaves in 1850. His son, General Thomas Abraham Huguenin (1839–1897), of the First South Carolina Infantry fought in the Civil War on the side of the Confederacy, like many other members of his family. He was the last commander of Fort Sumter. After the war he was a Brigadier General of the South Carolina militia. Julius G. Huguenin (1806-1862) was a delegate to the South Carolina Convention for Southern Rights in 1852 und his son, Abraham Huguenin (1836-1885), was a Captain with the South Carolina Army in the Civil War. David Huguenin (1724–1796) was the grandfather of Sarah Rebecca Huguenin (1808–1829) and Emmeline Lucia Huguenin (1819–1858). They were both married to Colonel William Ferguson Colcock (1804–1889) of The Ocean plantation, Gopher Hill summer resort, and Charleston. He held the offices of State Representative, Speaker of the House, U.S. Representative (1849–1853), Collector of the Port of Charleston. In 1860, he owned 171 slaves in St. Luke’s Parish, Beaufort District. Until 1861, he served the federal administration in Washington, then the Confederate States. The wedding to Sarah Rebecca Huguenin took place on Roseland Plantation, and Sarah Rebecca was buried in the Huguenin family graveyard in Ridgeland.

=> The first of the De Saussure family from Geneva probably settled in the Beaufort District in South Carolina in the wake of the abortive Purysburg project launched by Jean-Pierre Pury (1675–1736) from Neuchâtel. One Henri de Saussure (1709–1761) from Lausanne in the Canton of Berne/Vaud immigrated to South Carolina in 1730 and died in Coosawhatchie, Jasper, South Carolina. He was the father of Daniel DeSaussure and grandfather of Henry William de Saussure. Horace-Bénédict de Saussure (1740–1799) was a famous geologist, meteorologist, physicist, and mountaineer from Geneva. He was married to the daughter of wealthy banker, was a merchant himself, and and partner in the Geneva bank «De Candolle, Lavit & Cie.», which traded in indiennes textiles, gave credits to shipping expeditions to Asia and cooperated with a company involved in the slave trade from Moçambique. His cousin in America was Henry William de Saussure (1763–1839), whose father Daniel DeSaussure (1736–1798) was a wealthy merchant and landowner in Beaufort and Charleston, trading in rice and indigo. Later, sea-island cotton was king. In 1777, Daniel travelled to Switzerland to meet his cousin and to have his two children registered as Swiss citizens. In the 1860 slave census, the DeSaussure family of South Carolina is recorded as owning 643 slaves.

=> Mary Elizabeth DeSaussure (1747 – 1823), daughter of Henri De Saussure (1709 – 1761) from Lausanne in the Canton of Berne / Vaud and among the first settlers of Purysburg, South Carolina, in 1772 married William Bellinger Kelsall (1740 – 1791), son of John Kelsall, owner of plantation Great Ropers near Beaufort, South Carolina. The Kelsalls had compromised themselves als British loyalists during the War of Indepence (1775–1783) and therefore had to leave South Carolina for the Bahamas. William Bellinger Kelsall with his wife Mary Elizabeth, four daughters and their slaves arrived on Exuma in 1790. In 1791 William Bellinger Kelsall died, his wife entrusted the plantation to a manager and went to live in Nassau and 1798-1802 in London. Because plantation business  was running low, because Cuba was trying to attract white immigrants, and because abolitionists were more and more active on the Bahamas, Mary Elizabeth Kelsall, daughter Henrietta and son-in-law Joseph Eysing moved to Cuba, where Eysing acquired land for a 400-acre sugar plantation on the Cacuyugin River in Holguín. The Bahamas authorities had only allowed the «export» of two slaves per European,  so Mary Elizabeth Kelsall used the trick of signing manumission papers for six of her slaves without informing them. They were used as slave labour for 20 more years, but then abolitionists discovered the scheme and launched a court case which continued for more than six years under the name of the «Kelsall Affair».

=> Louis Daniel DeSaussure (1804–1869, son of Henry William de Saussure) from a family originally from Geneva, was a slave-owner and probably one of the most important slave-auctioneers in the South. In 1852, he offered a «Gang of 25 Sea Island Cotton and Rice Negroes» for sale in an auction in Charleston, S.C., in 1857 «55 Prime Negroes Accustomed to the culture of Rice», and in 1860 «A Prime Gang of 158 Negroes», who were described as «accustomed to working in a rice mill».

=> In 1860, Henry William DeSaussure’s son William Ford DeSaussure (1792–1870) was among the signers of the South Carolina Ordinance of Secession. He was lawyer and a politician: member of the South Carolina House of Representatives in 1846, judge of the chancery court in 1847, and from 1852 on a Democratic US Senator. In 1860, he owned 20 slaves in Richland, South Carolina.

=> Wilmot Gibbes DeSaussure (1822–1886) was a brigadier general in the South Carolina militia and fought in the Civil War. He was a lawyer and a politician: He served five two-year terms in the South Carolina General assembly and also as South Carolina Secretary of the Treasury 1861/1862. The 1860 Slave Census registers four slaves in his ownership.

=> Louis M. DeSaussure (1804–1869) from a Swiss family originally from Geneva was a physician and planter of Beaufort County, S.C., son of Henry W. DeSaussure, longtime state chancellor. He owned a cotton plantation with 59 slaves according to the 1860 Slave Census. In the Civil War, he served as a surgeon with the 8th and 4th South Carolina Infantry regiments, C.S.A.

=> H. W. DeSaussure Jr. owned 53 slaves according to the 1860 Slave Census.

=> Louis McPherson DeSaussure (1804–1870) son of Henry William DeSaussure Sr., owned DeSaussure Plantation in Beaufort County, South Carolina and 76 slaves in 1860. He and his son Charles served as surgeons during the Civil War. DeSaussure’s property was confiscated after the war.

=> John M. DeSaussure owned 291 slaves in 1860.

=> Sarah Jones DeSaussure (1817-1893) married Alexander Hamilton Boykin (1815-1866) in 1835. He was a successful planter in the Kershaw and Sumter districts, where he possessed 5,737 acres at his death. His residential plantation, which he purchased in December 1835, was Plane Hill near Camden. Other of Boykin’s holdings included Hillyard, Carter Hill (700 acres), Millway, Pine Grove, and the Mill plantations on Swift Creek. According to the 1860 federal census, his real and personal estates were valued at $55,000 and $241,000 respectively; the slave schedules for that year listed 189 slaves in Kershaw and 58 slaves in Sumter as his property. He was a politician (South Carolina House of Representatives) and he fought in the Civil War in the rank of a captain. Confederate president Jefferson Davis appointed him judge advocate in 1862. Sarah Jones DeSaussure’s nanny Nancy was an indigenous slave.

3.1.5 Florida

=> The Mississippi Bubble was a financial scheme in France that triggered a speculative frenzy. It was engineered by John Law, Scottish adventurer and financial wizard, and monopolized the French tobacco and African slave trades. In 1719, the vessels «Grand Duc du Maine» and «Aurore» unloaded their human freight in Pensacola (Florida): 500 black slaves. In 1720, Law’s companies ended in financial collapse. Swiss money was invested by:

• the city State of Solothurn (N Switzerland)

les Mississippiens de Steckborn, i.e. Jean-Henri Labhard, Jean and Jean-Georges Deucher, and Jean-Georges Füllemann, all from Steckborn (Canton of Thurgau, NE Switzerland)

• the merchants Conrad Zellweger-Tanner (1659-1749), Conrad Zellweger-Sulser (1694-1771) and Johannes Zellweger-Sulser (1695-1774) from Trogen (Canton of Appenzell Ausserrhoden, E-Switzerland)

Louis Guiguer (1675-1747), citizen of Bürglen (Canton of Thurgau, NE Switzerland), with an investment of 800,000 £ the fourth most important shareholder of the «Compagnie des Indes Occidentales»

• a considerable number of citizens of Geneva and citizens of St.Gallen in Lyon (among them banker Henri d’Antoine Locher)

• the banking company «Malacrida» from Berne

=> Francis Philip Fatio (1724–1811) from Vevey (Canton of Berne/Vaud) first was a soldier in the Swiss Guard, then became a merchant in London. In 1769, he invested in plantations in East Florida. In 1771, he moved with his family to East Florida and become the managing partner of New Castle Plantation, which specialized in producing indigo. In 1774, he moved to another plantation, which he first called New Switzerland, then Nueva Suiza. It had a surface of 10,000 acres and, with 86 slaves, produced maize, citrus fruit and cotton for sale. Francis Philipp Fatio became the founding father of the Florida branch of the Fatio family.

=> In 1769, one David Courvoisier, probably from Neuchâtel, bought 700 acres for Fatio’s London company and established the indigo plantation Neufchâtel. In 1771, Francis Philip Fatio became its first director.

=> (Sir) Frederick Haldimand (1718–1791) from Yverdon in the Canton of Berne / Vaud was an army officer and colonial administrator. In 1755, when full-scale war against the French was edging closer, he cooperated with members of the Swiss Prévost family from Geneva (three brothers and a nephew) and with Henry Bouquet (1719–1765) from Rolle in the Canton of Berne / Vaud in the raising of troops among German and Swiss settlers. Frederick Haldimand, who was stationed in Florida during the war, was appointed to the sinecure of inspector general of the British forces in the West Indies in 1775.

=> Henry Bouquet (1719–1765) from Rolle in the Canton of Berne/Vaud entered the British Army in 1754 as a lieutenant colonel in the 60th Regiment of Foot. Bouquet gained lasting infamy during the «French and Indian War» (1754–1763) by organising massacres among the indigenous nations and by pioneering germ warfare: He sent the besieged Delaware two blankets and a handkerchief that had been exposed to smallpox, in an attempt to spread the disease among the Natives. In 1763, groups of Native Americans joined forces to remove the British from their territory in what is most often called «Pontiac’s War». Chief Pontiac (actually Obwandiyag, born between 1712 und 1720, died 1769) attacked frontier forts and settlements in 1763, and numerous frontier outposts were quickly overrun, others were besieged or threatened. Bouquet, who was in Philadelphia, threw together a hastily organised force of 500 men. He and his relief column were attacked by warriors from various Indian nations near outpost «Bushy Run». In a two-day battle, Bouquet defeated the tribes and Fort Pitt was relieved. The battle marked a turning point in the war. It has been called «the most decisive victory in all history gained by the white man over the American Indian». It ended the Indian uprising and enabled the westward expansion of British settlements. In 1765, Bouquet was promoted to brigadier general and placed in command of all British forces in the southern colonies. He died in Pensacola, West Florida, in 1765. He had intended to spend his old age as a plantation owner. He already owned plantations in South Carolina and Maryland.

3.1.6 Georgia

=> Henry Bourquin (1755-1819) from a Swiss immigrant family possibly from Sonceboz (Berne), son of Benedict Bourquin (died 1770) and Jane Judith Chatelain Bourquin, was born in the colony of Georgia. The family lived near the Little Ogeechee on a 500 acre plantation named Bern. This adjoined the home place of his uncle, Henry Francois Bourquin, called at that time Bordeaux. In 1755, he asked for another 500 acres of land, having «a wife & four children & 25 negroes». He also asked for a lot of land in Hardwicks, and he was granted both. It is likely he continued to live on Bern with his widowed mother for some years before she died in 1799. In 1787, he owned 9 slaves. In 1769, Henry Bourquin, his nephew, asked for 500 acres for his family and 20 slaves, and was granted the land in St. Philipp’s Parish. The same year, he asked for another 500 acres of land for 20 slaves, which was granted in St. David’s Parish. In 1756, Benedict Bourquin petitioned for 450 acres of land for his family and 17 slaves, and was granted the land between Great Ogeechee and Midway. The Slave Census of 1860 records one Martha Bourquin of Savannah City District, Chatham with 3 slaves, one Benedict Bourguin of Savannah City District, Chatham with 17 slaves, and one Benedict Bourgoine of Ogeechee, Chatham, with 5 slaves.

=> Hans Felder’s son Samuel Felder (1796–1890), from a Swiss family from the Canton of St.Gallen, continued migration into Perry GA. In 1860, his family was registered there with 215 slaves. His son Calvin W. Felder was a captain in the Civil War. He lived in Americus GA, where he has street named after him, and was a slaveholder. Another Samuel Felder (1796–1867) was born in Orangeburgh and then moved to Georgia. In In 1860 he was living in Houston County with a combined real and personal estate valued at $107,152. He was the owner of twenty slaves.

=> Lewis Rumph (1793–1862) sold his plantation to one John M. Felder and moved to Georgia. In 1860, the descendants of the Rumph family were recorded as owning 186 slaves.

=> Schläppi/Slappy/Slappey from Meiringen, Canton of Berne: In 1860 they are registered among the large slaveholders. In 1860, the descendants of the Slappey family were recorded as owning 174 slaves.

=> Edward David Huguenin (1806–1863) from a Swiss family originally from Le Locle (Canton of Neuchâtel) is registered with 185 slaves in Sumter, Georgia, in the 1860 Slave Census. He fought in the Civil War in the rank of a Lieutenant Colonel. The family held the Huguenin plantation in Early County 1836-1862. The Huguenin plantation near Americus, Sumter County, Georgia, was perhaps the largest farm in Georgia (11,000 acres).

=> Abraham Gindrat (1764–1815) from a Swiss family originally from Tramelan (Berne) married Barbara Clark, widow of William Clark, and thus became the owner of White Hall Plantation in Georgia with 57 slaves. Louise Gindrat married Richard James Arnold (1796-1873) from Rhode Island, who invested heavily in White Hall for the cultivation of cotton and in his Cherry Hilland Mulberry tracts further up the Ogeechee River. He became the most prosperous rice planter in the region. By 1860 Arnold was the largest landowner in Bryan County, with over 15,000 acres and 195 slaves.

=> Robert Flournoy (1763-1825), originally from a family of Geneva Huguenots, was born into affluence in Virginia. After moving to Georgia, he amassed large land holdings in 11 counties. He then moved to Chatham County late in his life and acquired three plantations: Bona Bella Plantation (390 acres, cotton, complete with slaves), Chatham Plantation(738 acres, price 4,000 $), and Cedar Grove Plantation (1325 acres complete with house, slaves, and equipment, price 20,000$). To his daughter Mary Mildred Flournoy he gave a 575-acre-plantation with 17 slaves before her marriage in 1821.

=> According to the 1860 US Slave Census, descendants of the Swiss Turnipseed family are registered with 326 slaves in Georgia.

3.1.7 Kentucky

3.1.8 Louisiana

=> The 4th company of the Swiss Regiment Karrer was stationed in Louisiana at the service of the French 1731–1764.

=> De Morsier, officer («lieutenant») in the Swiss Regiment de Karrer, had been stationed in Louisiana for 11 years and had established for himself a property («habitation») called «Hermitage», situated across Mobile Bay on the Fish River. In 1745, he applied for permission to introduce there the production of Gruyère Cheese. He wanted to send for two men and a woman competent in cheese-making from Switzerland, and he wanted guaranteed property rights for that estate. 

=> Paulina deGraffenried Pickett (1816–1899) from a family originally from Berne was already one of the richest women in Louisiana, when she married John Belton Pickett, who was the richest man in the state and one of the biggest landowners. They merged their properties. Soon they divorced and Pickett moved to Cuba to become a sugar plantation owner in Cuba, and Paulina married again. In 1859/60, she bought 45 slaves with a value of 35,000 $ from her relative Thomas deGraffenreid (1815–1874) of Chester Disctrict, South Carolina.

=> William Lafayette Degraffenried (1830–1884) from a family originally from Berne was born in Lunenburg County, Virginia. He moved to Alabama and thence to Louisiana, where he became a slave-owner on his plantation Lafita on the Ouachita River in Caldwell Parish, Louisiana.

=> John Bartow Prevost (1766–1825), whose father (Col.) Jacques Marcus Prevost emigrated from Geneva with his brother (General) Augustine Prevost, became a lawyer and a slave-owner when he lived in New York. In 1804 he was appointed by President Thomas Jefferson as one of the first three judges of the Superior Court of the Territory of Orleans. Prevost bought a plantation with 35 slaves and with large sugar works near New Orlean. According to the 1860. Slave Census, many members of the Prevost family appear to have become slaveholders.

=> Alfred Flournoy (1796-1873), originally from a family of Geneva Huguenots, was a medical doctor and a cotton planter of Pulaski, Tennessee, and after 1838, a cotton planter of Greenwood Plantation in Caddo Parish, Louisiana, and leader in the Democratic Party. In 1824 he related to his wife the difficulties in selling his slaves. In 1838, a court document mentions that Alfred Flournoy had «received and had the entire control and management of the lands, slaves, monies, & other effects» belonging to the children with William C. Flournoy, who had recently died. The 1860 US slave Census registers 6 slaves in his possession.

=> Friedrich Arnold Schumacher (1840–1905) was from Berne, where he attended school and studied pharmaceutics. He emigrated to New Orleans in 1859 and worked in his brother’s commercial business. He joined the Confederate Army as an artillerist, became a colonel, and chief of armament of the artillery. In 1864, he returned to Switzerland, did military service and was promoted to lieutenant in 1865, to captain in 1869, and to instruction officer of the artillery in Berne in the same year. He was sent on a military mission to Denmark and Sweden in 1871 and was promoted to major in 1873. He was sharpshooter officer of the Armory in Thun, Canton Bern, from 1878 to 1879 and promoted to colonel in 1884. From 1889 to 1894, he was senior instructor of the artillery, and from 1894–1899 chief of armament of the artillery and chief of the artillery. He founded the boys› corps «Flibustia» to awaken interest in the military.

3.1.9 Mississippi

=> Frederick Zollicoffer (1806–1874) Dr., son of John Jacob Zollikofer, a Swiss Baron from a family originally from St.Gallen/Thurgau, born in Maury County, Tenessee, moved to Mississippi, where he became an extensive planter and slave holder. He introduced mule-raising to this section of McVille, Attala County, Mississippi. He died at Kosciusko, Attala County, Mississippi. In 1850, he owned 15 slaves (6 males, 9 females).

=> According to the 1860 US Slave Census, descendants of the Swiss Dantzler family are registered with 648 slaves in Mississippi.

=> In 1720, Charles Frédéric Merveilleux (Wunderlich) from a Neuchâtel/Berne family tried to attract recruits for service in (the island of) Mississippi in the context of John Law’s speculation project. He seems to have succeeded in getting several families of poor people, but his scheme was opposed by Berne and other governments. Later, he was a captain in the Swiss Regiment de Karrer, garrisoned on Ile Royale. He became the founding father of the French branch of the family. He died in 1749.

=> David Joseph Garde from Berne was a soldier in the French troops in Louisiana under the command of Swiss captain Merveilleux. He married Catherine Leib in New Orleans in 1724. 

=> Jean-Daniel Koly (or Kolly) from Switzerland, former financial adviser to a Bavarian prince-elector, on behalf of John Law (of the French «Compagnie d’Occident») and others established and administered the settlement Sainte-Catherine in Natchez (today Mississippi, then the French colony of Louisiana). Sainte-Catherine disappeared during the great Natchez Uprising of 1729 against French colonial rule. 

3.1.10 New York

=> Jean-Jacques Cart (1748-1813) from Morges, Canton of Berne/Vaud worked in Boston 1769-73 as private teacher of Admiral Hood’s son. He lived in Britain from 1776–1768, where he probably completed his legal studies. He was sent to America in 1793 at the service of the French Ministry of the Navy. After a stay of two years in New York, he settled in 1795 in Rosendale in the Hudson Valley, where, with the help of some Swiss and a large enslaved labour force, he worked a large farm. In 1798, however, he returned home because the French had conquered Switzerland.

3.1.11. Tennessee

=> A distant relative of Anton, Thomas and Sarah DeGraffenreid (see Carolinas) was Baker Boswell DeGraffenreid (1785-1855) from a family originally from Berne, one of the richest men in Fayette County, Tennessee. 74 slaves were registered on his plantation in 1850. Before he had started giving away slaves to his children in the 1840s, the number had been over 100. In the same district, one Henry Degrafinreid owned 23 slaves in 1860. In Franklin, Williamson County, Tennessee, one Mathew Fountaine DeGraffinreid (1779-1869) owned 44 slaves.

=> Elisabeth Zollicoffer (1812–1854), wife of Dr. Frederick Zollicoffer, from a Swiss family originally from St.Gallen/Thurgau, owned 18 slaves in Maury County, Tennessee, according to the 1850 Slave Census.

=> One Frank L. Theus, probably from a family of Swiss emigrants from Chur, canton of the Grisons, owned 41 slaves in Madison, Tennessee, according to the 1860 census.

3.1.12 Texas

=> In 1845 or 1846, after the death of her husband Samuel Bookman, Sr., Jemima (Junema) Bookman along with three of her sons Daniel E. Bookman, Joseph C. Bookman and Jesse Bookman migrated from South Carolina to Texas. The 1860 Slave Census registered a total of 21 slaves owned by members of the family.

=> Heinrich Rosenberger (1824–1893) from Bilten in the Canton of Glarus emigrated to Galveston. He followed Johann Hösli (Hessly), son of Heinrich Hössli, hatmaker, philosopher, and pioneer for the rights to homosexual love, and established himself as Henry Rosenberg, financier and investor active in banking, real estate, and transportation. Around 1859, he had a slavehouse built near his fashionable brick Italianate residence, and according to the 1860 US Slave Register, he still owned two slaves: an 18-year-old mulatto male and a 14-year-old black female. In 1866, he was appointed vice consul of Switzerland for Texas, and became Swiss consul three years later. He held that position until his death. When he died, he was considered the richest inhabitant of the state. In his last will, he took his home town into account and financed the renovation of the village church and a number of social institutions. A memorial foundation in the Canton of Glarus (Heinrich Rosenberger Stiftung), a library and a monument in Galveston as well as the city of Rosenberg commemorate his name. In 1895, two years after Rosenberg’s death, his widowed wife Mollie Ragan Macgill Rosenberg (1839–1917) from a family devoted to the Confederacy used her wealth to establish the Galveston Veuve Jefferson Davis chapter of the «United Daughters of the Confederacy», whose president she remained until her death. That organisation has been accused by many of «advocacy for white supremacy». In 1911, during the height of the Jim Crow era with its new legislation against free Blacks, its violence, and its voter intimidation, the statue «Dignified Resignation» was erected at Mollie Rosenberg’s behest, who thus expressed her devotion to the «Lost Cause» of the slaveholding South. From the «Galveston Monument Project» website:  «In light of current public discourse over race, racism, black history, and the growing awareness of the presence of confederate statues within our landscapes, the Rosenberg family name is at stake, as is the reputation and perception of Galveston itself.»

=> Nancy Lindsey Zollicoffer (1821–1918), daughter of George Zollicoffer from Tenessee and from a Swiss family originally from St.Gallen/Thurgau in 1836 married the planter Robert H. Cumby (1825–1881), who had moved with his family from Virginia to Lafayette County, Mississippi. They resided there until 1849, when they moved to Rusk County, Texas. Cumby became a prominent planter, a politician and one of the wealthiest men in the county. In 1860 he owned $22,600 in land and $38,000 in personal property, including thirty slaves. He fought in the Civil War as a Captain with the Texas Cavalry.

=> Samuel Martin Flournoy (1799–1878), originally from a family of Geneva Huguenots, was an early settler in the Republic of Texas, one of twin sons of Nancy Ann Martin and Samuel Flournoy (1758-1818), grandson of Jean-Jacques Flournoy. He was born in Scott County, Kentucky, and as young men, the brothers, Samuel and John, travelled by flatboat to New Orleans. When John died unexpectedly on the return trip, Samuel chose not to return to Kentucky. He travelled instead to Madison County, Mississippi, and settled near Canton. Flournoy prospered and in 1836 sent an overseer with 100 slaves to build a home in Chireno, Nacogdoches County. When he received word that the party had mistakenly gone to Sabine County to the South, he travelled to Texas and personally guided them to Chireno. On his arrival he bought additional lands in what are now Smith, Rains, and Wood counties. He completed his home by 1841 and returned to Mississippi for his family. By the summer of 1850 he had selected a new homesite a mile southeast of Quitman in Wood County. He sent his oldest son, Warner Mitchell Flournoy (1830–1916), to supervise a large group of slaves in the home’s construction, which the family occupied by late 1851. From the beginning Flournoy was active in public affairs. In 1852, as commissioner of the Second Precinct in Wood County, he used slave labour to build a road from Quitman to the Upshur county line. He was 61 when Texas joined the Confederacy in March 1861. The Texas governor commissioned him brigadier general and commander of the Texas Militia, Twelfth Brigade. Flournoy provided land for Camp Flournoy from his property holdings just southeast of his home. In October 1861 he enlisted at Camp Flournoy in the Third Texas Confederate Cavalry. He served with this unit for one year as a teamster, with his own team and wagon. Flournoy retired from public service after the war.

=> Gabriel Felder (1797–1868) from a family from the Canton of St.Gallen was born in Orangeburg, South Carolina, and became a judge. He moved first to Mississippi, where he married. In 1851, he moved to Texas with his wife, Ann, and two sons. He settled in Washington County and 1852­–1856 purchased several tracts of land totaling 2,418 acres on the banks of New Year Creek, at a cost of more than $19,000, to be paid as he received money from his property in South Carolina. He had inherited a fourth of the estate of his brother, John M. Felder, of Orangeburg, South Carolina, amounting to $100,000, which included $48,830 in «Negro property,» or 95 slaves, and $51,000 in money, mules, and horses.

3.1.13 Virginia

=> Christopher DeGraffenreid Jr (1691-1742) from a family originally from Berne owned a town house in Williamsburg, Virginia, and a plantation on the the nearby St. James River. His only son and heir was Anton/Anthony Tscharner DeGraffenreid (1722-1794), who lived in Lunenburg, Virginia. Close by was the plantation owned by a brother of Tscharner Hobson DeGraffenreid, Thomas D. DeGraffenreid (1815-1874). It was called The Baron’s Estate and was even bigger than his brother’s. In the Census of 1840, Thomas deGraffenreid with 109 slaves was, next to Colonel F. W.Davie with 108, Chester’s largest planter. In 1860, 155 slaves were registered there. The plantation was owned earlier on by (1764–1821).

=> The Schlatter family from St.Gallen counted among their members numerous councillors and two deputy mayors. Some became merchants, traders in colonial goods, theologians, and textile manufacturers, and the family globalised in the direction of Italy, Germany, the Dutch West and East Indies, Russia, and British North America. Michael Schlatter (1716–1790) was born in St.Gallen and studied theology in Leyden and Brunswick. He was ordained in 1739, and in 1746 offered his services as a missionary to the German Reformed emigrants in Philadelphia. He served as pastor of the united churches of Germantown and Philadelphia in 1746–1751, and made extended missionary tours among the German Reformed settlers in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, New Jersey and New York State. In 1757, Schlatter accepted an offer to become chaplain of the Royal American regiment, which he accompanied on an expedition to Louisbourg. He remained with the army until 1759. In 1764 he was a chaplain to the 2nd Pennsylvania Battalion under Henry Bouquet (1719–1765) from Rolle in the Canton of Berne / Vaud on a campaign against the Ohio Indians. In 1777, while still attached to the royal army, he refused to obey orders on account of sympathy with the colonial cause. He was imprisoned, and his house was plundered.

=> Jean Antoine and Antoine Charles Cazenove (1775–1852) from an aristocratic Geneva family of Huguenots had settled in France and left that country after the Revolution. Antoine Charles had worked in London in 1790, in the counting house of James Cazenove & Co. He had also once had a commission in the Swiss body-guard of Louis XVI. In 1794, the two brothers Cazenove fled the upheavals of the French Revolution and – via Switzerland and Hamburg – arrived in the United States,  where Jean-Louis Badollet and Albert Gallatin (both from Geneva, too) together with Jean Antoine Cazonove founded New Geneva in Pennsylvania. Gallatin was later to become the longest-serving US Secretary of the Treasury. In 1799, Antoine Charles (Anthony-Charles) Cazenove took up his residence in Alexandria, Virginia, where he passed a long life as a highly respected commission merchant and a banker (director of the Bank of Alexandria) who traded with textiles, sugar and iron from Calcutta among others. Originally planning to return to Geneva, Anthony-Charles Cazenove arranged for all of his children to have citizenship of the city.  In 1830, he had his house on North Washington Street built in Greek Revival Style.  His descendants are numerous and widely scattered from Massachusetts to Georgia. In 1854, one William G. Cazenove is mentioned in the case of the manumission of 41-year-old mulatto slave Sandy (worth $500) as executor of Anthony Charles Cazenove. In the 1860 US Slave Census, one Wm Cazenove is mentioned as owning six slaves (three male, three female) in Alexandria, Virginia. This was probably Anthony-Charles Cazenove’s youngest son William Gardner Cazenove (1819-1877). Another son was Louis Anthony Cazenove (1807–1852), a successful Alexandria merchant, who bought the Lee family home in 1850 for his new bride, Harriotte Stuart. The young couple were joined at the house by Louis‹ daughters from his first marriage and his father Anthony Charles Cazenove. When both Louis Anthony and his father Anthony Charles died in 1852, Harriotte and her daughters moved to a new house. In the Civil War, Harriot Stuart took sides with the South and in 1863 refused to swear an oath of loyalty to the Federal Government.

=> Today’s wealth-manager «Cazenove Capital» prides itself of its roots reaching back to 1823, when «Philipp Cazenove (1798–1880) and his brother-in-law John Menet became partners. Wikipedia argues that the company had its roots in the early Huguenot financiers who left France for Geneva in 1685 after the revocation of the Edict of Nantes. Among those were members of the Cazenove family, who later left Geneva for the UK seeking wealth and freedom in the City of London.

=> Jacob Flournoy (1663–1725 ) from a Geneva family of Huguenots, who had fled from France on account of religious persecution, immigrated to Virginia via Holland in 1700, on the ship Ship «Peter and Anthony», with his wife and four children, among them Francis. He was the uncle of Jean Jacques Flournoy (1686–1740), who came over from Britain around 1720. At that time, apparently over two hundred Huguenots settled at a spot some twenty miles above Richmond on the south side of James River, where ten thousand acres of land, which had been occupied by the displaced Manakin Tribe of Indians, were allotted to them and called Manakintown. Several documents list land grants to members of the Flournoy family: 400 acres to John James Flournoy (1723), 3200 acres to John James Flournoy and slave-holder Daniel Stoner (1738), who probably descended from a Swiss Anabaptist family «Steiner» from the Canton of Berne. Land was also granted to Jacob, Elizabeth, Frances, Henry W., Jane, Sallie, Stanhope, Thomas, Thomas Stanhope, and William Flournoy. In the 1730s, the Huguenots began using slaves to mine coal in «Midlothian» west of Richmond, Virginia. It is assumed that via White slave-owners named Flournoy, whose various family members moved westward into western Virginia and Kentucky, a considerable number of Black or coloured Flournoys came into being. Jacob Flournoy’s son Francis Flournoy (1686-1773) owned large estates in the Virginia counties of Henrico and Chesterfield. Land office records show that 1723–1751 he acquired 4,821 acres. His total holdings may have been much greater. Mathews Flournoy, son of immigrant Jean-Jacques Flournoy, established Fort Flournoy in Scott County, Kentucky. The 1850 US Slave Census registers 126 slaves in the hands of Flournoy family members in Virginia, Missouri, Georgia, Alabama, Arkansas, and Kentucky; the 1860 US Slave Census registers 62 slaves in the hand of Flournoy family members in Louisiana, Georgia, Alabama, and Kentucky.

=> Jacob Flournoy (1760-1846), originally from a family of Geneva Huguenots, lived in Chesterfield County, Virginia, all of his life. Family tradition refers to him as «Great Jacob«, a man of above-average physical strength. He was a plantation and slave owner and is said to have raised fine horses. In his will of 1843, he left to his granddaughter, Virginia Ann Cheatham, «one negro girl, Emmelin and future increase, during said Virginia Ann’s life and then to the said Virginia Ann’s heirs forever», and to his grandchildren «the following negroes […]: Rose Anderson, Archer, Ester, Robert, Nathan Jordon, and Sam, with their increase up to this time and for the future, to them and their heirs forever.» Mark Farmer Flournoy (1792–1854), son of Jacob Flournoy was the holder in Chesterfield, Virginia, of at least 21 slaves as of 1850.

=> Thomas Stanhope Flournoy (1811–1883), originally from a family of Geneva Huguenots, was a U.S. Representative from Virginia and a cavalry officer in the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War. He served as member of the secession convention in 1861 at Richmond. He then entered the Confederate States Army, raised a company of cavalry, and initially served as its captain. He was promoted to colonel of the 6th Virginia Cavalry. He participated in Stonewall Jackson’s 1862 Valley Campaign and saw action at the battles of Port Republic and Cross Keys. He was again an unsuccessful candidate for governor in 1863. The 1860 US Slave Census registers 38 slaves in his possession.

=> John Daniel Imboden (1823–1895), whose great-great-grandfather Diel Daniel Imboden came from Henau in the Canton of St.Gallen or from Hanau in Hessen (Germany) and whose great-great grandmother Elisabeth Zwygart (born 1705) from Berne, commanded the Sixty-second Virginia Mounted Infantry Regiment. At the start of 1863 he became a brigadier general, and his brigade covered the Confederate retreat after the battle of Gettysburg. Imboden greatly estimated Robert E. Lee. In the winter of 1865 he visited the prisoner-of-war camp at Andersonville, Georgia, and praised the efforts of Captain Henry Wirz for helping the captives. He later came to Washington, DC, to give evidence in support of Wirz, but he was not allowed to testify. According to the Federal Census, Imboden owned four slaves in 1850, seven in 1860. He was promoted to brigadier in 1863.

=> Henry Wirz (1823–1865) from the City of Zurich was banished for criminal activities, and emigrated to Massachusetts in 1849. After many different occupations (weaver, translator, spa supervisor, medical assistant, homeopathic healer), he became a plantation overseer in Louisiana in 1855. He became an American citizen in 1857 and volunteered for the Confederate Army in Virginia. He worked his way up in the military adminstration (secretary to various commanders, promoted to captain and assistant adjutant general, in charge of various prison camps) and in 1864 was appointed commander of the infamous confederate prison Camp Sumter near Andersonville. His brutal regime was inspired by his experience as a slave-plantation overseer: Plantation hounds and iron shackles were used to capture and punish escaped prisoners. After the war, he was accused of conspiracy and murder in 13 cases, condemned to death and executed by hanging in Washington in 1865.  The «United Daughters of the Confederacy» later initiated the construction of a monument honouring Henry Wirz in Andersonville, Georgia. Every year the the UDC and the SCV (Sons of Coinfederate Veterans) hold a memorial service at there, until today. About 130 people attended in November 2020. 

3.2 Canada

=> In 1745, Jean Baptiste du Croix from Sion in the diocese of Geneva (today Canton of Valais) was serving the Swiss Regiment de Karrer in Louisbourg on the Island of Cap-Breton (today Nova Scotia, Canada). On behalf of and by order of the regiment’s commander and owner Louis Ignaz Karrer (1711–1751) from Solothurn, he was transferred to the Royal Prison in Rochefort to be interrogated. He was accused of having held an illicit and forbidden meeting with other soldiers in order to protest against poor provisioning and to demand the vegetables overdue to them by 10 days. The War Council found him guilty, and he was sentenced to be degraded, disarmed and hanged until strangulation. His body was to be left attached to the gallows until sundown for deterrence. 

3.3 Brazil
(Colonial Brazil, United Kingdom with Portugal, independent empire)

=> Nigerian historian Joseph E. Inikori has called Brazil, as far as demographics and production for export are concerned, «an African country until 1872». The following Swiss textile trading houses were active in Brazil in that slavery-relevant period: «Lutz, Honegger & Cia.» and «Lutz & Cia. » (Berne), «Vollenweider & Cia. », «Rosemund, Vollenweider & Cia.», and «Rosemund & Cia.» (Basel), «Billwiller, Gsell & Cia.», «Laquai, David & Cia. », and «David, Huber & Cia.» (St.Gallen), «Daeniker, Wegmann & Cia.», «Daeniker, Ferber & Cia.», «Daeniker & Cia.», «Vogel & Cia.», and «Barth & Cia.» (Zurich). According to Swiss historian Beatrice Ziegler, almost all of these merchants owned plantations, either as an investment or to gain prestige with the local Brazilian aristocracy.

=> Swiss (and German) migration to Brazil in the fist half of the 19th century can and must also be seen in the light of early attempts by the White (originally Portuguese) Brazilian élite to «whiten up» the population of the country and thereby to reduce the alleged negative consequences of «slave imports».  By 1850, there were the following Brazilian colonies populated with White Swiss and German (the one being often difficult to distinguish from the other) immigrants: Nova Friburgo, Petropolis, Cantagalo, and Valão dos Veatos in the province of Rio de Janeiro; S. Leopoldo, Torres, and Três Forquilhas (for Protestant immigrants) in Rio grande do sul; São Pedro de Alcântara and S. Isabel in Santa Catarina; Rio grande in Paranà; S. Isabel in Espirito Santo; and Senator Vergueiro’s Ybicaba parceria colonies in the province of São Paulo. Many of those Swiss and German immigrants became slave-holders in the end, although part of the strategy of the Brazilian élite had been to replace slaves by white European immigrants.

=> In her research, Brazilian historian and singer Renata A. L. Lira, has unearthed a history of struggle and conflict between the Swiss settlers of the Nova Friburgo colony and the «Quilombo» in the region of Casimiro de Abreu, district of Macaé, state of Rio de Janeiro. That conflict dates back to the early 19th century and the days of slavery (in which the Swiss settlers participated) and continues to the era of the military dictatorship in Brazil (1964–1985), when apparently the last descendants of the maroon slaves were displaced by descendants of the Swiss colonists. 

=> Gabriel von May (1791–1870) from Berne (later aka «the Brazilian») served as an officer for the British and the Dutch. He arrived in Brazil in 1819, where he acquired large coffee and tobacco plantations in the Illhéus area south of Salvador de Bahia. He owned the coffee plantation Victoria, which he bought from an Englishman in 1823. He became a business partner of plantation-owner Auguste-Fréderic de Meuron and his tobacco factory. When de Meuron died, von May was the executer of his will, which requested the manumission of slaves Verissimo und Roccardo de Bahia and the manumission of the remaining slaves «according to their means and heir merits» after the liquidation of the company. Around 1855, there were still 18 slaves and 6 employees in the tobacco factory. When von May returned to Switzerland, he gave administration of his plantation to a fellow Swiss, probably Beat Ludwig Gabriel Wild (1789–1878) from Bex, Canton of Vaud/Berne, who was a plantation owner, too, and married to Rosina Anna Caroline May‏‎. Then von May sold his land and the 104 slaves to his nephew Ferdinand Karl Rudolf von Steiger (1825–1887) from Murten (Berne/Fribourg), who had been administrator since 1851. Ferdinand Karl Rudolf’s father, Albrecht Bernhard Steiger (1788–1866), had been born in Amsterdam and had been an officer in the Regiment von Wattenwyl at the service of the British. His grandfather, Albrecht Bernhard Steiger (1751–1819), had been an officer in the Regiment May at the service of the Dutch. The Steiger plantation was situated on the River Cachoeira and was about  6 kilometres along the river and 30–40 km into the jungle. West of Victoria, he owned another plantation called Salgado. On his plantations, he also grew sugar and cocoa. Maximilian, emperor of Mexico, visited «Baron von Steiger of Münsingen» during his expedition of 1859/60 to Brazil. Von Steiger returned to Switzerland in 1861 and 1873. All the slaves on his plantation were called Steiger. He had 10 children with Amalia da Sa Bethencourt e Camarao‏‎ (1834–1880), daughter of a neigbouring plantation owner, who all lived in Ilhéus, Bahia. Ferdinand (Fernando) Steiger ( 1853–1923) took over his father’s estate in Ilhéus, and Cherubino Steiger (born 1854) became chief engineer of the Brazilian national railway company. Out of his immense wealth, Gabriel von May he donated the Montmirail Hospital in the Neuchâtel region to the public.

=> Auguste-Fréderic de Meuron (1789–1852) from a very globalised Neuchâtel family (grandfather and father were indiennes producers, one uncle merchant in Surinam, two uncles merchants and plantation administrators on Grenada) arrived in Bahia in 1817 after an apprenticeship in the coffee, sugar, indigo and cotton trade with «Coulon, Meuron et Cie.» in Paris and after working in Portugal in the company founded by David de Pury. In 1819, he founded a snuff tobacco factory, which very successfully produced «Arèa Preta». In 1826, he moved his factory from Arèa Preta to Solar de Unhão and founded branch establishments in Rio de Janeiro (1832) and Pernambuco (1836). In 1837 he returned to Switzerland a very rich man. In 1855, the Rio factory workforce included 18 slaves.

=> Heinrich Däniker (1795-1866) from Zurich emigrated to Brazil, and in 1827, he entered the textile trade and later exported coffee. The couple Heinrich   and Cecile Däniker-Haller(1816-1887) owned slaves for tranporting goods and for the household. They lived in Petrópolis/Teresópolis from 1846 on, and their house-slaves were Antonio and Caetano. Their neighbour was plantation-owner Constantin Fischer, who had cultivated vine, coffee, and tee since 1819 together with Jean-Albert Fischer.Because of the yellow fever, the Däniker family left Brazil in 1852, but in 1853 Heinrich Däniker-Haller had to return to Teresópolis to organise his succession. His wife had written a sentimental poem on the death of slave Caetano, narrating his life from his capture in Africa to the «New World».

=> David Schwab (1748–1823) from Biel (Berne) together with François Verdan (1747–1818) from Sugiez/Neuchâtel/Biel administered an indiennes factory in Torres Novas (Lisbon) from 1780 on. Together with Henri de Meuron (1742–1825), Schwab created the company «Schwab & Meuron» to revive the banking and trading towards Brazil (trade in diamonds) which David de Pury (Henri de Meuron’s uncle) had established from Lisbon.

=> The Swiss colony of Nova Friburgo was founded 1819–1821 by a group of emigrants from Fribourg (830), from the Jura and the Bernese Jura region (500), from the Valais (160), from Aargau (143), Lucerne (140, among them members of the families PfifferWagenbach, Waser, Huber, Fehlmann, Rüttimann, Muggli, Imbach, Haslimann, Luterbach, Hunkeler, etc.), Solothurn (118), Vaud (90), Schwyz (17), Neuchâtel (5) and Geneva (3). Among the conditions to be met by the emigrants was being Catholic, adopting the Portuguese nationality and swearing an oath of allegiance to the king of Portugal. In exchange, they were granted a compensation for the departure, land, cattle and the right to own slaves. The Swiss consul in Rio, Charles Perret-Gentil, wrote that of the 1600 settler of 1820, only 710 or 254 families remained in Nova Friburgo, with a total of 152 slaves (according to the 1841 census). According to the census of 1851, Nova Friburgo had a population total of 4810, with 1764 of them being slaves. Moreover, many Swiss immigrants left Nova Friburgo, an area marked for diversified agriculture, to become coffee planters and slave owners elsewhere (especially in the coffee-producing region of Cantagalo).

=> In 1872, 29, 453 people lived in Cantagalo, 57% of them (16,805) were slaves. geographically, Cantagalo was part of the Vale do Paraíba. One of the Swiss settlers who in 1826 moved directly to Cantagalo was Henri Bon (born 1806) from Geneva. He was the third son of a Geneva watchmaker and was able to use some his inheritance. Henrique José da Silva Bon mentioned that his great-great-grandfather Henri Bon was a slaveholder and did not see any problem in that. Apparently, he adopted completely to the Portuguese model and bought himself slaves. «That romantic idea that the Swiss found slavery reprehensible is false,» Henrique said. «When they arrived, they thought – for a few weeks or months – that slavery was scandalous, then considered it a good business model.»

=> Johann Heinrich Dietrich (1814-1877) from Zurich became the Swiss vice-consul and a planter («própero fazendeiro») in Cantagalo.

=> Arnold Alfred (Staehelin) (1822-1892) from a patrician and very globalised Basel family emigrated to Brazil to become the founding father of the Brazilian branch. He lived in São Pedro de Alcântara as a «farmer». There are indications, that the German/Swiss colony also held slaves. A Staehelin family genealogy mentions «several hundred descendants in Southern Brazil, mostly in the Santa Catarina province».

=> The colony of Leopoldina in the State of Bahia was founded in 1818 by five immigrants, three of them Swiss: Abraham Langhans, Louis Langhans und David Pache. Later came members of the Swiss families Beguin, Borel, Huguenin, Jaccard and Montandon. As early as 1825, the settlers started practising slavery on their coffee-plantations. Merchant Johann Martin or Joao Martinho Flach (1781–1855) from Schaffhausen, who was for many years secretary, confidant and credit granter of Brazilian empress Leopoldina, owned the plantation Helvécia, as large as 7500 football grounds and with more than 100 slaves in 1848. Helvécia was one of the largest coffee plantations of the 19th century. By the end of the 1850s, there were 200 whites as opposed to 2000 black slaves on the 40 Leopoldina plantations. When Joao Martinho died, the plantation and its slaves passed into the hands of his son Johannes Flach. When he died in 1868, there were 151 slaves recorded on Helvécia. In 1875, Johannes Flach’s widow sold the plantation and returned to Switzerland. Traveller and scientist Johann Jakob von Tschudi (1818–1889), when he visited the plantation in 1866, stressed slavery as a factor for the colony’s success and claimed that «in general», the slaves received «humane treatment» there.

=> In 1882, there was a slave-rebellion on a large slave plantation in Helvécia (Caravelas District). It belonged to Frédéric-Louis Jeanmonod (possibly 1835–1916) from Provence (Canton of Vaud), who was the Swiss vice-consul at that time. Leopoldina colony had become so important that Switzerland created a consular office the neighboring town of  Caravelas in 1861. Jeanmonod was the office-holder 1861–1881, until he was made vice-consul.

=> Jakob Laurenz Gsell (1815–1896) from St.Gallen was a merchant in Rio de Janeiro 1836–1850. He worked his way up through the companies «Romberg, Schleiden und Töpken» (import of manufactured goods from Germany, export of coffe and sugar), «Thibaud, Boetz u. Compagnie», and «Boy, Goumier and Andrea». He then set up his own company together with fellow countryman Jakob Friedrich Billwiler: «Billwiller, Gsell & Co.» (with partners Reinhold Laquai from St.Gallen and Heinrich David from Basel) in 1840. They imported textiles from Europe and exported cotton and coffee among others goods. The merchants bought, hired, sold, and owned domestic slaves, and Gsell himself resorted to whipping his domestic slave for corporal punishment. His letters demonstrate that he cared much more for business than for the fate of the slaves around him.

=> Lucas Jetzler (1798–1863) from Schaffhausen followed his brother Ferdinand to Brazil, where together with Jean Rudolphe Trümpy from the Canton of Glarus they founded the sugar, coffee, and tobacco merchant house «Jetzler Brothers & Trümpy» in 1829. In 1855, Lucas Jezler withdrew from business in order to trade tobacco in Cachoeira. He was active in the slave trade and when he died, his inventory recorded 13 slaves.

=> Carlos Ferdinand Keller, a Brazilian son of a Swiss who already worked in the area, succeeded «Jezler, Trümpy & Cia.» as «Keller & Cie.». The new company traded in cocoa to Switzerland and lent money and goods to plantation owners. Without extensive loans from the merchant house «Keller & Cia./Wildberger & Cia.», the creation of cocoa plantations on a large scale in southern Bahia would not have been possible. Keller also owned a plantation, and moreover invested in other plantations. He had himself a ship built in order to transport cocoa from southern Bahia directly to France. When Carlos Ferdinand Keller withdrew from business, Emil Wildberger from Schaffhausen and Hermann Braem, a Swiss who came to Brazil in 1880 to work in the largest cocoa buying and exporting company of that time, took over as «Wildberger & Cia.». Emil Wildberger owned ships to carry cocoa to the coast. In the 20th century, the cocoa exporting firm «Wildberger & Cia.» managed to become the largest exporter of cocoa in Brazil, among all other competitors, from the 1930s until the early 1950s.

=> Johann Jakob von Tschudi (1818–1889) from the Canton of Glarus was a Swiss naturalist, explorer and diplomat, who visited Brazil and other South American countries 1857–1859 and who became Swiss ambassador to Brazil in 1860. Tschudi realised that slavery would be abolished in Brazil, but he held racist views on Afro-Brazilians and claimed that with African slaves, a new and «evil element» had entered the Brazilian population. He theorized on the four main races of man: the Caucasia, the Mongolian, the Ethiopian, and the American. According to Tschudi, «any race mixing with negroes» would «move backwards». The mulatto was to him in general «extremely sensuous, wanton, reckless, shirking work, devoted to the game and to drinking, vindictive, artful, and shifty» and tended to become a criminal. On the mulatto woman, he had this to say:

«Even in the face of the most beautiful mulatto woman there is not a trace of nobility to be found. The nose is always broad, the lips more or less bulging, the gaze without spirit, but fiery, sensual and challenging, the complexion yellow-brown and the skin exhales a specifically disgusting smell.»

The slave, according to Tschudi, was unable to make good use of his newly won freedom. Being too proud, he would refused to do the work as a free man which he had done as a slave. When the Swiss government in 1864 was confronted with the question what to do with Swiss citizens who were slaveholders in Brazil, they relied on a report by their special envoy Johann Jakob von Tschudi and came to the conclusion that slavery did not imply a crime and that Swiss merchants, craftsmen and diplomats could not be expected to make a living without the work of slaves. Tschudi is also know for trading a bottle of cognac for the statuette of Ekeko, the Tiwanakan god of abundance and prosperity, in 1858 while traveling in the Andean highlands. The members of the Swiss government who defended and justified slavery in 1864 were: Jakob Dubs (1822-1879), parti radical-démocratique; Karl Schenk (1823-1895), parti radical-démocratique; Melchior Josef Martin Knüsel (1813-1889), parti radical-démocratique; Constant Fornerod (1819-1899), parti radical-démocratique; Friedrich Frey-Herosé (1801-1873), parti radical-démocratique; Wilhelm Matthias Naeff (1802-1881), parti radical-démocratique;  Jean-Jacques Challet-Venel (1811-1893), parti radical-démocratique.

3.4 Southern Africa

=> Between 1652 and 1795, some 450 men (and a few women) arrived at the Cape from Switzerland, more than a third from the Canton of Berne. Half of then were soldiers first, 10% were officers or part of the VOC administration. A considerable number of them became slave-owners.

=> Jan Sausche from Rougemont in the Canton of Berne/Vaud arrivved at the Cape as a corporal. He worked as a blacksmith, acquired citizenship, and in 1751 owned a house-slave.

=> When Johann Heinrich Studer from Zurich died in 1804, he left his German widow, three sons, two daughters, 2 slaves, 19 trek-oxen and 34 heads of cattle.

=> Hans David Soeblee from the Canton of Berne/Vaud served as a soldier, rose in the administration, received a pension from the VOC and retired to his farm. In 1792, he lived with a khoikhoi woman and had manx children. In his last will, he left everything to his  «Bastard Khoi woman Ester of the Cape» and decreed that his slaves were not to be sold.

=> Alexander Blanck (born ca. 1650–1700) from Schaffhausen came to the Cape in the pay of the VOC. In 1670 he was working as a tar burner in Table Bay, later the same year as a guard on duty at Fort Kyckuyt. When his contract with the VOC ended in 1674, he remained at the Cape as a settler. In 1681, Blanck was granted 145 hectares west of Klapmuts in the Stellenbosch District, which he named Groenfontein. In 1692, he had four horses, 44 head of cattle, 340 sheep and 6000 vines. In 1676, he had bought the sixteen-year-old slave Claas Caste van der Kaap, a «half breed», for 95 rixdalers, in 1677 Lijsbeth van Madagascar for 13 rixdalers. At this price she must have been very young. 

=> Nikolaus Laubscher (Claas Loubser) from Fräschels in the Canton of Fribourg was first recorded at the Cape in 1676 when he bought a small farm near the mouth of the Salt River (now a suburb of Cape Town). He was assigned one slave by the VOC council. In 1682, he owned two slaves, 11 heads of cattle, and 50 sheep. Later he owned many slaves from Madagaskar, Moçambique, and from the East. These are his documented slave purchases (with age and price): 1685 David Casta Chianaeu (18, Rds. 56), 1686 Hendrick van Madagascar (18) and Maria van Madagascar (18, 19, Rds. 90), 1686 Adriaen van Madagascar (18/19, Rds. 48), 1688 Anthonij van Mozambique (18, f 226), 1690 Titus van Bengale (12, Rds. 60), 1692 Thobe Ginjams van Madras  (10, Rds. 60), 1692 Roffing van Paleacatta (13/14, Rds. 60), 1695 Titus van Batavia (18, Rds. 105), 1696 Claas van Macassar (25, 100 «enkele Spaanse matten»), 1697 Michiel van Madagascar (8, Rds. 76), 1698 Thamar van Macassar (23/24, Rds. 100), 1698 Kees van Trancquebar (24, Rds. 70). One of his slaves was «David of Malabar», who allegedly molested his Dutch wife and was whipped and put in chains accordingly. Later, a group of slaves escaped under David’s leadership. They were caught, and David was sentenced to be broken on the wheel. In 1700, Laubscher owned 12 male and 4 female slaves, in 1719, shortly before his death, 26 male slaves, 2 female slaves, 3 slave boys and 1 slave girl. When he died, he owned three farms in the Cape Town region and four town houses in Cape Town, one of them in Heerengracht, today’s Adderly Street, the main street of the central business district. His sons become wealthy farmers, too, and a grandson called «Loubser» was said to be one of the richest farmers of the country with his farm «Groot Rietfontein» on the Berg River. 

=> Jakob Krebs (before 1670–ca. 1709) from Berne may have arrived at the Cabo de Goede Hoop in 1683, and after serving his five-year contract with the VOC, he settled there as a free tanner and shoemaker in 1688. He was the first Swiss tradesman on record at the Cape. He hired soldiers, preferably with some knowledge of shoemaking, from the VOC. In 1692 he married Sophia Vinck of Amsterdam. By 1701 his household included one servant and four male slaves who probably assisted in the workshop. Documented slave purchases (with age and price): 1696 Titus van Tranquebaer (15, 95 Rds.), 1697 Anthonij van Trancquebare (18, Rds. 91), 1697 Camba van der Kust Coromandel (30, Rds. 100), 1699 Philip van Batavia (25, Rds. 130), 1699 Dorothea van Bengale (20, Rds. 45), 1699 Dorothea van Bengale (20, Rds. 40).

 => Andre Gauch (Gausch, Gousch, Goosche, Gauché, Goos) (ca. 1660–1698), his wife Jacqueline Decré (ca. 1664–1691) and their son Steven Gous (born c. 1684) were a Huguenot family from Geneva. From Amsterdam, where a girl was born, they embarked on the «Spierdijk» for the Cape Colony. Father and son reached the Cape alone in 1691, the mother and sister having died during the voyage. André Gauch married Jannetje de Clercq in 1691 in the Nederduitsch Gereformeerde Kerk in Stellenbosch. They had two sons and two daughters. In 1698, André Gauch was murdered at his homestead. He had purchased the following slave (with age and price): 1694 Claas van Madagascar (24/25, Rds. 90). Steven Gous (1684–before 1758) married Catharine Bok (ca. 1705–ca. 1779), a former slave girl aged 13, daughter of Darius van Bengale and Anna Groothenning van Bengale, in 1718 in the Nederduitsch Gereformeerde Kerk at Stellenbosch.  

=> Niklaus Wiederkehr (Nicolaas Wederkeer) (birthdate unknown, died 1719) from Bremgarten (Canton of Aargau arrived at the Cabo de Goede Hoop in 1694 on the «Ijsselmonde»and served as a VOC soldier 1696–1706, when he became a free burgher and a member of the Cape community. He may have made his living as a blacksmith. After his death an inventory was made of his belongings. among other things, he owned a house, household goods, and two male slaves.

=> Michiel Löw (Ley) (1670­–1716) from Benken (Canton of Basel Land) arrived at the Cape in 1696. He was a butcher by trining, but began as a VOC soldier. He fathered an «illegitimate» daughter by Company Slave Lodge matron Armozijn Claes van de CaepMagdalena Ley (1697–1738) was born in bondage and was owned by the VOC. In 1697, Ley married Engeltje Breda from Delft, Holland. In a conflict with the VOC of 1708, four of Ley’s slaves fled in an attempt to return to Madagascar but were recaptured after committing murders and robberies, and were executed with great savagery. The census of 1709 recorded him with wife, three sons and one daughter, two servants, fourteen slaves, four horses, thirty head of cattle, 300 sheep and two pigs, 6 000 vines and two leaguers of wine. Ley had purchased the farm Welgemeent comprising 3,95 hectares SE of Table Mountain. In 1710 he bought a second house. In 1715, Ley was elected Lieutenant of the Burghers and a year later he died. His widow hired Swiss VOC soldier Johannes Lister of Basel to help her carry on. Michiel Ley’s son Nicolaas Ley, (born ca. 1703) was a merchant and 2nd Commissioner for the Slave Trade at Madagascar, thus directly involved in the slave trade. 

=> Lieutenant captain Jean-Ulrich Kiburg from Basel bought the «Hottentot’s Holland») after having commanded troops against «indigenous rebels» in Ceylon nachdem er Truppen gegen «eingeborene Aufständische» on Ceylon. In 1800, he had a farmhand, 18 male and 2 female slaves, 72 horses, 43 heads of cattle, 70 sheep and 18 barrels of wine.

=> In 1696, Johann Oberholzer from Aa near Wald (Canton of Zurich) came to the Cape as a 16-year-old soldier. Being a butcher by profession, he became wealthy and married into a rich family of Huguenots. Before getting married, he had lived with a coloured woman and had had a number of children with her. He moved to Stellenbosch, took over three farms from his father-in-law, and launched his political and military career. In 1712, he had a wife, two sons, 6 slaves, 11 horses, 81 heads of cattle, 500 sheep and 18,000 vines.

=> In 1696, Hans Michel Löw from Benken in the Canton of Basel Landschaft arrived at the Cape as a soldier. He soon became master butcher, meat trader and leading member of the local church. When four of his slaves tried to escape and flee back to Madagaskar, they were caught after several murderrs and robberies and punished with great cruelty. In 1709, was a wine producer and  had a farm, a wife, three sons and a daughter, 2 servants, 14 slaves, 4 hourses, 30 heads of cattle, 300 sheep, 2 pigs and 6000 vines. His son Nicolaas became a welathy merchant and commissioner for the slave-trade on Madagascar.

=> From 1753 to 1757, Joseph Anton Grütter from St.Gallen did his military service in the rank of a corporal.

=> Between 1762 and 1781 Jan or Isaak Weiss from Solothurn served as executioner at the Cape. He was always assisted by two black slaves. His performance: eight hangings, five times breaking on the wheel (in one case plus pinching with red-hot pincers),  beheading and paling, chopping off a hand, breaking all the limbs from the feet upwards and then killing with the coup de grace, strangling, thirteen whippings and branding with red-hot iron, four times only whipping, putting in the pillory plus whipping, and one sword-stroke on the head.

=> In 1783, the De Meuron Regiment arrived at the Cape. It had been raised in Switzerland by Charles Daniel de Meuron (1738–1806) from Neuchâtel. His military career: in the service of France and wounded in action in the Hallwyl Regiment in the Caribbean (1755–1765), in the service of the Swiss Guards in Paris (1765–1781), abortive project for Swiss soldier-settlers in French Guyana (1775–1780). He put his regiment of 1100 men, two thirds of which were Swiss protestants, at the service of the VOC to man the garrison at the Cape. In his household, De Meuron had 13 slaves, 11 horses and enormous amounts of furniture, silverware and paintings. The regiment remained until 1788, but its commander Charles Daniel de Meuron had left for Europe in 1786 already, together with two black slaves (or «servants») called Pedro and Vendredi.  

=> Willem Bartholomé Eduard Paravicini di Capelli (1778–1848) was a descendant of the Grisons branch of the Paravicini family, who was born in the Netherlands to the mercenary officer Johan Caspar Paravicini di Capelli (1660–1761), who was born in Chur (Canton of Graubünden / Grisons). He started his military career in the family tradition at the age of nine as artillery cadet. He was commissioned a lieutenant in 1792 and took part in the campaigns of 1793 and 1794 in Flanders against the French. When the Netherlands became the Batavian Republic, a satellite state of revolutionary France, he left the army, only to re-join in 1802 as captain after the signing of the peace treaty of Amiens. He was appointed aide-de-camp of general J.W. Janssens (1762–1838), the future governor of the Cape Colony, where he arrived in 1802. In April 1803, Governor JanssensParavicini and the two local guides Dirk Gysbert and Daniel van Reenen set off on horseback on an expedition to explore the eastern Cape. They were accompanied by a detachment of dragoons with their servants and slaves. Their route took them (in today’s terms) as far as Port Elizabeth (skirting the coast), then they turned northward and went to Colesberg, then crossed the Great Karoo to reach Cape Town via Maatjesfontein and Ceres. They arrived in Cape Town on 13 August 1803. Paravicini kept a travel diary, which was published under the title «Reize in de Binnen-Landen van Zuid-Africa. Gedaan in den Jaare 1803». Dirk Gysbert van Reenen covered the same ground in his «Dag-verhaal eener reize naar de binnelanden van Africa beoosten de Kaap de Goede Hoop geleegen». Their different approaches to the same reality (outsider vs insider) are striking: Slavery is matter of course in Paravicini’s book, but is occasionally mentioned, e.g. when Paravicini tells of robbed Bushmen or free Hottentots kept as slaves. And he tells the story of a young slave who was castrated as punishment for absconding from work and being found on a neighbouring farm flirting with slave girls. In Cape Town rumours circulated about an impending attack by the British. Paravicini’s main job was to develop the defence capability of the Cape Colony and to increase defence readiness. At that time the French explorer, cartographer and naturalist Nicolas-Thomas Baudin (1754–1803) was on his last voyage of scientific exploration to Australia, where he discovered more than 2500 new species. He had two ships, the « Géographe» and the «Naturaliste». From Sydney he sent home the «Naturaliste», which had on board all of the specimens that had been discovered by Baudin and his crew. He then headed for Tasmania, before continuing to Timor. The «Naturaliste» arrived in Cape Town on 17 January 1804. Paravicini donated to the crew 30 birds and the skins of a Bontebok and two Springboks. In 1804, it became known that Paravicini had been recalled to the Netherlands. Because there was a war in Europe he had to wait until April 1805 for a passage to the Netherlands, where he continued his military career.

=> Rudolph Antony Baron de Salis (1761-1851) from a noble family originally from Soglio in the Canton of Graubunden/Grisons, started his military career as a cadet in the regiment of his father, Jean Baptiste des H.R. Rijksridder de Salis (1721-1803). In 1778, he became a subaltern merchant at the service of the VOC in Batavia, mayor of the city of Breda in 1784, political councillor (number two behind the governor) at the Cape in 1802, where he got married in 1804. He was elevated to the Dutch nobility as a «Jonkheer». 

=> His brother Adriaan Maurits Theodorus de Salis (1788-1834) from a noble family originally from Soglio in the Canton of Graubunden/Grisons was born in Breda (Holland). Shortly after the arrival of his father at the Cape, he left for Java with recommendation to Governor General Albertus Henricus Wiese. In 1804, he was appointed clerk to the secretariat of the governor of the police at the Cape of Good Hope. In Java, he became the first commander at the office of secretary-general Hendrik Veeckens, and he was then particularly distinguished by Marshal Herman Willem Daendels, who appointed him his private secretary and commissioner of expenditures. 

=> Roelof Diodati (1658–1723) from a Geneva family took service at the Dutch East India Company (VOC). He became an accountant at the Cape from 1686 and then a merchant. Between 1686 and 1692, he sold the following slaves: Pieter from Madagascar (aged 17), Orson and Jacob from Madagascar (14 & 15 respectively), Isak from MadagascarAbraham from Madagascar (aged 20), Salomon from Madagascar (aged 16), Willem from Madagascar (aged 17/18), Daniel from Madagascar (aged 14), Aran from the Coast (aged 18/19), David from Madagascar (aged 16/17), David from Madagascar (aged 17/18), Jacob from the Coast (23/24),  Aron from Malabar (aged 23/24), Coridon from Malabar (aged 24/25). In 1692 he bought the slaves Servidor from Bengal (aged 12) and Aron from Malabar (24/25). Diodati was appointed governor of Mauritius 1692–1703. Diodati then moved to Batavia, where he became a merchant and accountant in 1707. In 1709 he married Catharina Zaaiman, born on Dutch Mauritius. Her grandmother had been the «Hottentot First Lady» Eva Meerhoff (c. 1643-1674), a Khoikhoi interpreter for Jan van RiebeekDiodati became the chief trader at the VOC post and center of «regulated prostitution» at Dejima (an artificial island off today’s Nagasaki, Japan) in 1720 and died in Batavia in 1723.

3.5 East Indies

=> Some 8,000 Swiss mercenaries were at the service of the Dutch colonial army in the East Indies (today’s Indonesia) from 1815 to WWI. Sometimes they made up as much as 10% of the European force.  The biggest conflict they were involved in was the Aceh War (1873–1904). Swiss soldiers were part of special units patrolling the archipelago and using scorched earth tactics to subjugate local leaders.

=> Elie Ripon from Fribourg and from a family from the Canton of Vaud left Switzerland at the beginning of the 17th century. He initially served on a whaling expedition to Greenland, but took a serious dislike to the activity, so the next year he signed up with the Dutch East India Company, and was sent to the Far East. He turned his experiences of 1617–1627 as a captain in China, the Dutch East Indies, Japan, and Taiwan into a travelogue after his return to Switzerland. He had been sent to various locations in the Moluccas as well as to the islands to the East of Bali. Ripon gave an account of the fight between the Dutch and the Portuguese over Macau, which at the time hosted about 2,000 Portuguese, 20,000 Chinese and around 5,000 African slaves, brought by the Portuguese from their colonies in Angola and Mozambique. It was actually mostly the Africans who fought off the Dutch assault. After returning from Formosa to the East Indies, Ripon went on many more explorations of faraway islands and described fights against the Spanish, Portuguese, and local adversaries in Sumatra, Borneo and the Moluccas.

=> Philippe/Filippo/Phelipe Calandrin(i)/Calandrijn/Kalandrijn (1587-1649) from a Swiss-Genevan/Italian-Tuscan family was born in Frankfurt a.M., resided in London for a certain time and became a merchant in Amsterdam (1614) and Venice. He was appointed Duke of Savoy in 1623 and departed for Batavia with his wife Margaretha van der Meulen and their four daughters in 1646. Philippe Calandrini died at Batavia in 1649. Among the guardians and executors of his will was Pieter Kemp, former Captain of the Batavia Citizens› Militia and owner of slaves Dominga van Bengale and Maaij Ansela van Bengale, whom he sold to theCape of Good Hope’s first VOC Commander Jan van Riebeeck. Among the children: Charles (1620–ca. 1650), probably in East India before his father; served on Ternate, one of the Moluccas, and on Ambon, and led a wild life; Elisabeth (1621-1657), related to several commanders of the Cape; Susanna (1626-1696), who married Joannes Cunaeus (sheriff of Batavia, «raad-extraordinaris», «raad-ordinaris» of India, envoy with Cornelis Speelman to Persia, colonel of burgher watch & president of Council, «ordinaris Raedt van India», VOC jurist in Batavia, VOC commissioner at the Cape of Good Hope), Maria (1632-1671), who married Pieter Sterthemius, a senior Batavia merchant in the service of the VOC in the Dutch trading post of Suratte in India (today federal state of Gujarat) and on the Malabar Coast, VOC director in Dejima (Dutch trading post and centre of prostitution off Nagasaki, Japan) in 1650, trader in silver, salted vegetables and soy sauce, VOC director in Hooghly in Bengal in 1655; member of the «Raad van Indië» in 1658. The Calandrini Family intermarried into the following influential and trans-continental 17th century aristocratic, banking and trading families: Diodati, Burlamacci, Turretinni and D’Ablaing as well as into some of the more important VOC merchant families like Van der Stel, Six, Bax, and Hinloopen.

=> The Wettstein company were the regular VOC printers in Amsterdam. The firm had been founded by Henricus Wettstein (1649-1726) from Basel, who had moved to Amsterdam and was a bookseller, publisher and printer. The printing house was continued by his sons Gerard (1680-1755) and Rudolf (1679-1717) and by Rudolf’s son Jacob Henry (1706-1779) and son-in-law William Smith. The firm printed books from 1667 to 1757.  Among the many titles they printed for the VOC was the Malay translation of the Old Testament by George Henric Werndly (1694-1744) in 1733. In Batavia, the VOC produced their printed works in the «lands drukkerij». 

=> Jean/Giovanni Diodati (1576–1649) from Geneva was a Protestant theologian, diplomat and translator with strong ties to Holland (Synod of Dordrecht, 1618-1619). His grandson was Jean Diodati (1658–1711), who was born in Leiden and died in the Dutch trading post Suratte, India (today federal state of Gujarat). His great-grandson Philippus Diodati (1686–1733) was born in Dordrecht. He left Holland with his parents at the age of 11, became a merchant and then the first director of the VOC grain store in Batavia. 

=> Théophile Cazenove (1708–1760) from a Geneva family of Huguenots settled in London in the mid-eighteenth century with his son Jean Henri, a merchant who was naturalised in 1762. Jean Henri (John Henry) Cazenove (1737– 1817) operated as a merchant dealing with the French and English East India Company, building a large connection to Lisbon, as well as drawing on connections in France and Amsterdam. He became involved in finance at an early stage, dealing in government stock and later securing business on behalf of the US government, distributing dividend payments to English holders of US securities. In 1772, he was involved in supplying bonds to the owner of Bacolet plantation on Grenada, one of the most profitable Grenada sugar estates with over 30 slaves. John Henry Cazenove was a merchant and director of the East India Company, probably in the 1760s.

=> In 1702, Laurenz Halder from St.Gallen arrived in Java as a mercenary soldier on a VOC ship. In Batavia, he met one Nägeli from Teufen AR, a simple mercenary like him, and the wealthy Ludwig Caesar from the Canton of Glarus, who made his living as an inn-keeper, later lived in a mansion and not only owned several horses and coaches but also several slaves. Halder also made the acquaintance of a widowed woman from the Zollikofer family from St.Gallen. During a sea voyage, Halder was enslaved in Malakka. After his realease (possibly aftera ranson payment), he returned to Batavia and then via Holland to St.Gallen, where he got married in 1708. 

=> The following Swiss are mentioned in 1727 in the context of a VOC shipwreck en route to Batavia: that of the vessel «Zeewijk»: Hans Pieter Anthonij from Biel (Bienne) in the Canton of Berne, Joseph Grand from Lausanne (Canton of Berne, today Waadt), Nicolaas Ledderfrom Biel (Bienne) in the Canton of Berne, Olderik Miller from Dornach in the Canton Solothurn, Abraham Saigne from Neuchâtel.

=> Hans Jacob  from Basel travelled aboard the «Batavia» to East India. In 1620, he was executed as a murderer in Batavia

=> In 1780, one Bagneux des Côteaux, a former «sous-lieutenant» in the Regiment of the 100 Swiss, was ensign in the Regiment stationed in Pondichéry (today Puducherry) in SE India.

=> One François Pierre Félix Vonderweidt (1766–1810), brother of Marie-Joseph-Simon-Alexis von der Weid (who died in Saint-Domingue)  was from the Pondichéry branch of that patrician family from Fribourg. His grandfather had stayed in that French outpost in today’s India. In 1774, François Pierre Félix Vonderweidt joined a company owned by his father in the Swiss Regiment de Waldner (later Vigier). He served the French and was made lieutenant in 1788. He fought in Nancy and received the Croix de St-Louis. He sympathised with the French Revolution in 1792, but then returned to Fribourg and entered local politics.  Later, he entered French services again and was made baron de l’empire in 1808. 

=> Johann Joachim Stähelin (1760–1815) from St.Gallen became a mercenary soldier and in the 1780s served the Dutch in different places in Europe. He then travelled to Java as an accountant in the service of the «Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie» (VOC) and returned to the Cape Colony with 100 slaves on board. After returning to Holland, his second voyage took him to the Cape again, from where he set sail for Batavia. There he was made overseer of 300 slaves on the estate of a German colonist. On a slave market in Bantam, he purchased «27 pieces, all young negroes of both sexes». After three years as a slave-overseer, he was ordered back to the Cape, where he became a private teacher for slave-holding colonists. In 1801, he returned to St.Gallen, became a private teacher and published an account of his travels and adventures in 1811.  

=> Elias Paravicini (1733–?) was a son of Johan Caspar Paravicini (1660-1761), who was born in Chur (Grisons) and went to the Netherlands as a mercenary officer of a Swiss regiment. Elias Paravicini was born in Breda in Holland. He joined the «Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie» (VOC) in 1757, departed for Batavia in October 1757, where he arrived via the Cape in April 1758. He returned to the Netherlands in 1759 as secretary of the return fleet and left the VOC. In 1762, he re-joined the VOC as a lieutenant, left the Netherlands to arrive at Colombo in 1763. In 1765 he turned up as artillery lieutenant and engineer in Galle (Ceylon). In 1766 he was recorded as captain and engineer in Colombo. In 1773, Paravicini became «commandant» of Kalpitiya and Puttalam (about 130 km north of Colombo). As «commandant» he had to collect the rent the local people had to pay to the Dutch. He was chairman of the district council and could impose fines. If he wanted to use the sjambok (a heavy leather whip) or chains as punishment, he had to obtain consent from Colombo. Heavier criminals were judged in Colombo, and Muslim slaves did not fall under his jurisdiction; they were judged by their imams. The «commandant» was in charge of a sergeant, a corporal, 14 common soldiers, a gunner and two servants. In 1763, Paravicini was transferred to Colombo. After 1787, he was referred to as major and chief of artillery, a position he held until his death. According to a VOC-document he died in 1794. Other dates of his death vary between 1795 and 1808.  

=> The UK Slave Register 1813–1834 has 280 slaves in the hands of owners named Cazenove, Cazeneuve, Casenave, Casnave, etc. in Grenada, Trinidad, and Mauritius. 

=> Roelof Diodati (1658–1723) was appointed governor of Mauritius 1692–1703. He then moved to Batavia, where he became a merchant and accountant in 1707. In 1709 he married Catharina Zaaiman, born on Dutch Mauritius. Her grandmother had been the «Hottentot First Lady» Eva Meerhoff (c. 1643-1674), a Khoikhoi interpreter for Jan van RiebeekDiodati became the chief trader at the VOC post at Dejima (Japan) in 1720 and died in Batavia in 1723.

=> One Jakob Laurenz Zollikofer (1698–1721) from a globalised St.Gallen family died in Batavia. One Georg Niklaus Zollikofer (1676–1706) died in the East Indies, too.

=> Hans Heinrich von Waldkirch from a noble Schaffhausen family was in the military service of the French, then of the Dutch. His son Hans Heinrich von Waldkirch served as a lieutenant of the Dutch and died in 1733 im Batavia.

=> Friedrich Ulrich Hartmann from Zurich, son of Captain Hans Conrad Ulrich Hartmann, died in Batavia in 1733.

=> Jacques Christophe Gonzebat (1734-1777) from a St.Gallen/Thurgau family became a merchant in Pondichéry (French/British India), where he died at the age of 43. Anton Gonzenbach (1712–1737) from Hauptwil (Canton of Thurgau) was in the service of the Dutch VOC and died in Batavia.

=> Louis (Ludwig) Escher was born in Zurich in 1732 and entered the Zurich Regiment de Lochmann (later Steiner, 1752–1792 at the service of the French) as ensign in 1759. In 1762, he was promoted to «sous-lieutenant» and to «premier lieutenant» in 1764. He took part in the campaigns of the regiment in 1750, 1760 and 1762, and fought in the Battle of Warburg and the siege of Munster. In 1774, he quit the service of the French and demanded a leave plus a pension in order to go the Americas and went to Holland. However, when his financial situation worsened, he was forced to take up service in the Dutch East India Company as part of the troops employed on the island of Ceylon. He then approached the French to enter into their services again. He sailed to the Coromandel Coast and was put at the head of a company of Sepoys in the Trincomalee Batallion. He took part in the campaign of the squadron of 1782 and participated in the siege of Trincomalee, and in the battle against the British of 3rd September 1782, he lost all his belongings when the vessel «L’Orient» suffered shipwreck. Escher then demanded to be compensated for his losses in the shipwreck, a demand to which the French authorities consented in 1785. He was ordered to sail to Île de France on the corvette «L’Auguste» and from there on the commercial vessel «Le Dromaidaire» to Lorient. He then returned to his home town of Zurich in 1785. Hans Jakob (de) Steiner, Field Marshal and colonel of a Swiss regiment, employed himself for Escher to be granted a pension by the French authorities.

=> The Schlatter family from St.Gallen counted among their members numerous councilors and two deputy mayors. Some became merchants, trader in colonial goods, thgeologians, and textile manufacturers, and the family globalised in the direction of Italy, Germany, the Dutch West and East Indies, Russia, and British North America. One Salome Schlatter married Johannes Leutmann (1643–1695) from St.Gallen as his second wife. Leutmann died in Batavia. One Jacob Schlatter from Schaffhausen entered the services of the Dutch East India Company in 1733. He died in the East in 1737. One Johann Georg Schlatter entered the services of the Dutch East India Company in 1787.

=> Daniel and François de Treytorrens, cousins of David-Philippe de Treytorrens (1721-1788) from Yverdon, Canton of Berne / Vaud lived their lives in Batavia.

=> Daniel Burnat (1723–1802) from Moudon, Canton of Berne / Vaud, son of an officer at the service of the French, went to Holland to become a tutor for the Verelst family, whom he accompanied to Turin in 1750. In 1753, he moved to the East Indies, where he became a merchant first in Batavia, then Surate. For three years he was the commander of a fort on the Malabar Coast, and in 1765 became the general administrator of the Dutch trading station in Colombo. Also in 1765, he was made interim governor of the island of Ceylon, 1767–1787 he was commander of Matara Province in the South of Ceylon. In a letter to his sister-in-law, he disclosed the secret that together with his house-keeper, he had an 11-year-old girl child. In 1789, he wrote about his acquaintance with Pierre-Frédéric de Meuron (1747–1813 ) from Neuchâtel, whose regiment was stationed in Colombo Castle. Daniel Burnat quit his post on account of his declining eyesight.

=> In 1767, one Johann Heinrich Waser from Zurich, surgeon in Batavia, made the Zurich Botanical Gardens a gift of several plants and seeds.

=> Louis Wyrsch (1793–1858), aka «Borneo Louis», son of on officer in the service of Spain, entered the Dutch military service in 1814, and fought in the Battle of Waterloo in 1815. He then joined the Dutch colonial army, and took part in the conquest of Bali in 1816. In 1825, be was appointed civilian commander of Borneo’s southeast coast and was stationed in Banjarmasin. He was wounded in the attempt to subdue a local rebellion. While in Borneo, he had a relationship with his «huishoudster» (housekeeper) Johanna van den Berg (Ibu Silla), most probably also his slave and a Malay from Java. Together they had four children, two of which died in infancy. In 1832, Wyrsch returned to Switzerland with his children Alois and Constantia, but without Johanna van den Berg. His son Alois Wyrsch (1825–1888) became the first person of colour in a Cantonal Government (Nidwalden) and the first MP of colour in the Swiss Federal Parliament (Nationalrat).

Jean Frederic Theodore Mayor (1797–1848) was born in Geneva. His father came from a family from Echallens, his mother was a member of the Dutch branch of the Maritz family from Burgdorf. He came to Batavia on board the Nassau in 1816. In 1820 he had risen to become Secretary of the Residence Semarang, then he became Resident of Maros in Celebes. In 1828 he was installed as Governor of Makassar. 1834–1843 he was Resident of Soerakarta, then Resident of Besoeki. In 1846, he was given the function of Government Commissionary for Balinese matters, e.i. he experienced the beginning of the cruel war against the Balinese for inclusion in the Dutch Empire. Mayor was married to the Buginese woman Sabibia, born a slave. She was given the name Voll at birth. She was probably the daughter of the slave Miena and a member of the influential Voll family.

=> Jean-Antoine Baud (1728– 1806) from Celigny (Canton of Geneva), scion of a patrician family from the Geneva region, left for Holland as a simple soldier in one of the Swiss (Bernese) regiments from the Vaud region. He married Dutchwoman Kristina Klinkensteen in 1762 while staying in the garrison at The Hague. In 1795, the Swiss regiments were disbanded. Jean-Antoine Baud left two sons: Jean and Abram.  

=> Franz Josef Michael Letter (1800–1880) from Zug was in the military service of the Dutch from 1819–47. He was stationed in Batavia and Semarang (Java) and in Padang (Sumatra) from 1838–47, towards the end of his service as Major of the 13th Batallion of Infantry. He returned to Switzerland to persue a military career (staff colonel in the Federal Swiss Army, brigadier) and a political career (member and chairman of the cantonal government of Zug).

=> Theodorus Azon Giacometti (1758-1806) was born in Vicosporano in the Canton of Grisons. His son Jan Jacometti (1796 – 1820) was born in Rotterdam and died in Havanna, Cuba. Another son, Theodorus Josephus Azon Jacometti (1789–1856) was born in Rotterdam and died in Batavia.  He was captain of the Durch merchant navy from 1818 onwards and undertook regular voyages on the ship «de Jonge Anthonij»  between Holland and Batavia and on «de Drie Gesusters» between Batavia and Japan. In 1823, he accompanied Johan Willem de Sturler (17741855) to become the chief trader of the Dutch East India Company in Dejima near Nagasaki. In 1832 he settled in Batavia as a factor, shipping agent, and merchant banker. The company Jacometti & Co existed 1832-1864. He imported ropes, linseed oil, anchors, sailcloth, sailors› instruments, maps, army supplies, chains, paint, pitch, ship’s compasses, playing cards, medicine, sheets, bedcloths, paper, glassware, and tobacco. On a wholesale level, he exported coffee, arak, nutmeg, Chinese porcelain, wood, and mace. His daughter was Anna Louise Cornelia Maria Frederika A Jacometti (1822–1858), who was born in Batavia and died on the Cocos Islands (today Australia), a private forced-labour colony producing coconut oil, later a British colony. In 1898, a company Jacometti & Co. was still registered in Batavia under its director, one W. H. Jacometti.

=> Guillaume-Louis Baud (1801-1891), Jean-Antoine Baud’s grandson, was posted as civil servant in the general secretariat in the East Indies in 1824. In 1830, he was appointed secretary of Kadoe (Java), in 1832, he became Assistant Resident of Kadoe and was temporarily put in charge of the administration of this district. At the end of 1832, he was appointed captain of the Kadoe militia, which was to be set up. A former mutineer, Djaja Sindergh, severely assaulted Baud and inflicted a serious wound on him. Sindergh’s head was given to Baud by native chiefs, who kept it until the end of his life. In 1834, Baud was promoted to Resident of Kediri. He was highly regarded by Governor-General Johannes van den Bosch, who in 1830 had introduced the «Cultuurstelsel», a cultivatioin system which turned most of Java into a gigantic plantation. In 1838, Baud became Resident of Semarang. He was administrator of the rubber plantation Adolina Oeloe on behalf of the company Serdang-Cultuur-Maatschappij and was «minister of agriculture & land cultivation», until he returned to the Netherlands in 1845 due to health reasons. In 1848, Baud was appointed Minister of Colonies, from which position he resigned after six months, following a disagreement with his colleagues. He was appointed State Council in extraordinary service in 1849, specifically to sit in on colonial and financial affairs. In 1858, Baud asked to be dismissed from the Council of State, and later refused an appointment as Governor-General and Minister of Colonies. Baud was appointed royal commissioner of the Dutch Trading Company in 1867. He was also co-founder and from 1851–1886 chairman of the East and West India Education Society.

=> Abram Baud’s two sons were Jean-Chrétien and Frédéric, who would, as a family history boasts, «rise  to the highest destinies and of whom both Holland and Switzerland can be proud.» Jean-Chrétien Baud (1789–1859) started his career in the Dutch navy. At the age of 18, he left Holland for Java, but the ship «La Mouche», which he was travelling on, was captured by the Anglo-Portuguese fleet off San Salvador. He regained Holland in 1810 and was again sent to Java in the rank of an ensign at sea. He then left the marine and worked his way up the civil service. In 1815, he married Henriette Senn van Basel, who had Swiss roots, too, and with whom he had 12 children. In 1819, he was General Secretary of the government of the Dutch East Indies. He returned to Holland in 1822 and went back to the East Indies in 1824 as Head of the Department for the East Indian Colonies. He there became a member of the committee appointed by Royal Decree in 1828 with the task to indicate the means to subdue the revolt in Java. This refers to the so-called Java War or Diponegoro Warfought in central Java from 1825–1830 at the cost of some 200,000 native and 8000 European lives. When his wife died in 1831, he married Ursula Susanna van Bram, widow of a Batavia merchant, with whom he had five more children. In 1832, he replaced Governor Johannes van den Bosch. In 1833 he was nominated Vice President of the Government of the Dutch East Indies in Batavia and then provisional Governor General. In 1836, he returned to Holland first to be appointed Extraordinary Councillor of State, then Minister of the Marine and the Colonies 1840–1848. In 1850, he was a Member of Parliament, and in 1854 Minister of State. In 1858, he was raised into the Dutch nobility as Baron Baud. He published numerous reports, among them one on the Dutch West Indies (Surinama), but his attempts to improve the dilapidated state of Surinam did not have the desired success.

=> Several members of the noble Grisons family von Salis/de Salis, originally from Soglio (Val Bregaglia), were oriented towards Holland, the Cape Colony and the Dutch East Indies. Contacts with Holland were established through numerous officers serving in the Regiment Capol (later Regiment Zwitzers), which was for a time owned and commanded by colonel Rudolf Anton des H.R.Rijksridder von Salis (1688–1745), who started off as a captain of a Swiss company of soldiers in the regiment of Christoffel Schmid von Grüneck from Ilanz (Canton of Graubunden). He then became the founding father of the Dutch branch of the von/de Salis family. One Johann Baptist von Salis(1731–1797) was a Major General in Dutch services. Concerning their role in the East Indies, the following family members are to be mentioned.

=> Rudolph Antony Baron de Salis (1761-1851), grandchild of Rudolf Anton, started his military career as a cadet in the regiment of his father, Jean Baptiste des H.R. Rijksridder de Salis (1721-1803). In 1778, he became a subaltern merchant at the service of the VOC in Batavia, mayor of the city of Breda in 1784, political councillor (number two behind the governor) at the Cape in 1802, where he got married in 1804. He was elevated to the Dutch nobility as a «Jonkheer». 

=> His brother Adriaan Maurits Theodorus de Salis (1788-1834) was born in Breda (Holland). Shortly after the arrival of his father at the Cape, he left for Java with recommendation to Governor General Albertus Henricus Wiese. In 1804, he was appointed clerk to the secretariat of the governor of the police at the Cape of Good Hope. In Java, he became the first commander at the office of secretary-general Hendrik Veeckens, and he was then particularly distinguished by Marshal Herman Willem Daendels, who appointed him his private secretary and commissioner of expenditures. In 1811, he was mayor of the Greater Batavian Area («Ommelanden»), in 1812 bailiff over the region of Batavia and magistrate at Samarang, in 1813 member of the court of justice and neighbouring judge at Samarang. It was only the conquest of Java by the English that stopped his further career. When the Dutch gained the upper hand again, he was commissioned Deputy Resident of Soerabaja in 1817 and soon after also Resident at the courts of Suakarta and Djocjakarta. In 1821, he became a member of the Batavian Society of Arts and Sciences. In 1822, he was appointed resident of Surakarta, and in 1825, resident of Kadoe. When the Java War started, he was on leave in the Netherlands and returned to Kadoe only in 1826, where the rebellion was raging, too. He was a member of the committee appointed by Royal Decree in 1828 with the task to indicate the means to subdue the revolt in Java. This refers to the so-called Java War or Diponegoro Warfought in central Java from 1825–1830 at the cost of some 200,000 native and 8000 European lives. The war started when Prince Diponegoro (born Bendara Raden Mas Mustahar, later Bendara Raden Mas Antawirya) 1785–1855) opposed Dutch colonial rule on his estate. In 1830, Adriaan Maurits Theodorus de Salis was provisionally put in charge of the functions of the Resident of Surabaya. Because his opinions on how to deal with the local princes differed from those of the authorities in the East Indies, he resigned his post and returned to Holland. King Willem I appointed him member of the Council of the Indies, the central institution of Dutch colonial policies in Asia, and sent him back to Java, where he was of important service to Governor Johannesvan den Bosch until his death.

=> Jean-Baptiste Baron de Salis (1784-1838) was born in Batavia harbour onboard the VOC vessel «De Meerenberg». He started his military career in the fleet of Prince Willem V near the Isle of Wight. Until 1815, he held various military and civil service posts, and in 1816, he set off to Java, where he was received by Governor-General Godert van de Capellen. He was made inspector and adjoint director of Forestry and Timber. In 1821, he was Inspector of Samarang, and during the so-called Java War or Diponegoro War, fought in central Java from 1825–1830 at the cost of some 200,000 native and 8000 European lives, he was in the field several times. He was made Assistant Resident in Banjoewangi, and the «Javasche Courant» of 1828 records him a Resident in Rembang, where he ended his career. He had a reputation as a fearless hunter and was called «Toewan Matjan» (Tiger Man Lord) by the natives.

=> The Stürler family, originally from Berne, established numerous relations with the Dutch empire and the East Indies. In 1632, one E.J.C. de Sturler was co-author of a book called «Aan de leden van de Bataviasche landbouw-vereeniging» (to the members of the Batavian Agricultural Association). Vincent Stürler (1662-1734) from Berne was an officer at the service of the Dutch and raised to the peerage in Holland. He died in Berne. Bernhard Stürler (1725–1783) was lieutenant captain in Dutch services in the Regiment Graffenried. His son Albrecht Stürler‏‎ (1769–1804) was an officer in Dutch services in the Regiment May. He died in Batavia. Johann Wilhelm Stürler (1773­–1855)‏‎ was a Dutch artillery officer, envoy of the Governor-General of the Dutch East Indies, and a landowner on Java. From 1823–1826, he was director of Dejima, Dutch trading post and centre of prostitution at Nagasaki, Japan. In 1835, he returned to the East, where 1835–1839 he was a member of the General Court in Batavia. At the same time, he operated some sugar factories on Java. His son Jacques Eduard de Sturler (1800-1840) was secretary of Pekalongan 1828–1830 and appointed resident of Banjumas in 1830. In 1835, together with an English sugar and indigo entrepreneur, he acquired the Poegoe sugar factory. In 1840, he published his book «Reizen uit Oost Indie naar Europa in Engeland, Nederland, Duitschland, Frankrijk en Zwitserland gedaan in 1836». Willem Louis de Sturler (1802-1879) was bearer of the King William decoration 4th Class, retired major in the Dutch East Indian Army, knight of the order of the Dutch Lion, holder of the medal for the war on Java of 1825–30, senior employee and investor in «Cultuurmaatschappij Tandjong-Pinang», a coffee plantation on the island of Bintan (one of the Riau Islands in the Malay Archipelago). He published extensively on tropical economy, social, historical and political conditions in the East Indies (Sumatra, Palembang region, Java). In 1822, one «Captain (de) Sturler/Stürler» was praised for his expedition to the west coast of Sumatra and his attack on Oedjong- Radja. In 1832, «Captain Stürler» with his company took part in the arrest of the ruler of the Minankabau people in West Sumatra in the context of a local rebellion against the Dutch.Also, his attack on Bonjol in West Sumatra was mentioned. Wilhelm Peter Stürler‏‎ (1788–1824) was a merchant in Holland and Batavia. Karl August Stürler (1814–1882) was a Hussar officer in Dutch services on Java and commander of Surabaya. In 1858 he married Amarantia Louise de Rooy. The couple had two children: Elisabeth Maria Stürler (born 1866 in Surabaya) and Alfons Eduard Ludwig Stürler (born 1867 in Surabaya). The latter became a civil servant with the national railway company. In 1857, an advertisement for Sturler & Co. in «De Oostpost» offered Gruyère cheese, Swiss absinthe from the company of Edouard Pernod (Couvet in the Val de Travers), Italian pasta, beverages, confectionery and sugar confectionery. Johann Wilhelm Eduard Stürler (1828–1890), son of Jacques Eduard de Sturler (1800-1840), was born in Batavia and died in Cannes. He entered the services of a sugar factory in Besito (near Kudu on Java) in 1860, and became co-owner the same year. This allowed him to make fortune and to acquire the Tijomas estate on Java in 1867 for 1.4 million guilders. He became one of the most powerful men around Buitenzorg and was raised to the Dutch peerage in 1884. In 1887, a work conflict on Tijomas was resolved with force and left about fifty native workers dead and many wounded. In 1854, he had married Friederike Johanna Dinger. The couple had many children, among them: Jakob Eduard Stürler (born 1855 in Tajoe), Consul-General in Bangkok and Dutch envoy in Athens, and Alfons Ludwig Stürler (born 1856 in Tajoe), a farmer. Eduard Jakob Ludwig Stürler‏‎ (1830–1868) was a lawyer who died in Surabaya. Klemens Bernhard Friedrich Stürler (born 1801) was a lieutenant in the service of the Dutch, then captain in the service of the VOC and military governor on Sumatra.‏‎  Friedrich Wilhelm Ludwig Stürler‏‎ (1834–1877) died in Besito, Koedoes/Kudu. He was a civil servant for financial affairs on Java, a planter and director of a sugar refinery in Besito. Alfons Stürler (1872–1940) was born in Besito and was a planter on Java.

‏‎=> Johann Wilhelm Eduard Stürler (1828–1890), son of Jacques Eduard de Sturler (1800-1840), was born in Batavia and died in Cannes. He entered the services of a sugar factory in Besito (near Kudu on Java) in 1860, and became co-owner the same year. This allowed him to make a fortune and to acquire the 17,800 acres Tijomas estate on Java (today Ciomas) in 1867 for 1.4 million guilders. He administered the estate together with his son Pol and his son-in-law Paddy. In the villages of the estate lived about 15,000 Soendanezen (indigenous people), whose contracts were renewed by Sturler in 1869, stating that the peasants had to deliver 20% of the harvest, had to grow coffee on their land, had to deliver the coffee harvest at a price fixed by Sturler, and had to work five consecutive days every five weeks on the owner’s coffee plantations in the mountains. Anyone failing to abide by the contract could be punished by having his plot of land sold. Sturler became one of the most powerful men around Buitenzorg and was raised to the Dutch peerage in 1884. In 1887, a work conflict on Tijomas was resolved with force by KNIL soliders from Batavia and the Buitenzorg police, leaving about fifty native workers dead and many more wounded. In 1888 son-in-law Paddywas made a member of the «Algemene Rekenkamer van Nederlansch Oost-Indië». 

=> Gottlieb von Wattenwyl‏‎ (1723–1778) from Berne was an officer in the service of the French. He died in Batavia.

=> Louis Relian (1725–1778) from Geneva was a surgeon. In 1760, he mnarried‏‎ Katharina Magdalena Verbeek (born in the Cape Colony), and he died in Batavia.‏‎

=> Emil Karl Ludwig von Muralt (1803–1828)‏‎ from Berne was an officer in the service of the French and the Dutch. He died in action in Batavia.

=> Jean-Lucien de Salis Meyenfeld (1809–1840) started his military career as a 2nd lieutenant in the «Regiment Zwitzers» under General Jakob Sprecher von Bernegg. When his unit was disbanded, he joined the Dutch army and was garrisoned in Antwerp until 1830. In 1834, he returned from service in Naples to Holland and left as a subaltern officer for the East, where, because of his zeal for service, he was soon reinstated as an officer. He took part in the second «Bali Expedition» and was knighted with the «Willem Military Order 4th class» for his conduct. In 1840, when he wanted to go on leave because of his weak health, he died unexpectedly in the hospital in Batavia. He had already attained the rank of captain.

=> Justus Cornelis Zubli (1830-1867) from a St.Gallen family, great-grandson of Paulus Zübli, plantation owner in Berbice, and grandson of Abraham Zubli in Demerara (1760–1812), got married in Java, serving in the Dutch military as captain-quartermaster of the East Indian Army. He died in Batavia. His brother Nicolaas Ambrosius Zubli (1844–1865) died of a disease in Oenarang, Central Java. Paulus Zübli’s great-great-granddaughter Hendrika Elize Zubli (1863-1916) got married in the Javanese coastal town of Semerang to Louis Marcal, first luitenant of the KNIL (Koninklijk Nederlands Indisch Leger).

3.6 Egypt

=> Jacques Ambrosius von Planta (1826–1901) from Samedan in the upper Engadine valley was a Swiss cotton entrepreneur. The von Planta family in Samedan had already acquired part of their wealth from the 18th century Pool family plantation and slavery complex in the Dutch colony of Berbice. In 1853, Jacques Ambrosius founded – together with his cousin Peter von Planta (1829–1910) – a cotton trading company in Alexandria (Egypt) and in 1867 one in Liverpool. The Manchester branch of J. Planta and Co. was established in 1911, and the Swiss community of cotton magnates (von PlantaReinhardtCooper, and Burckhardt) and some more 700 Swiss citizens was present in Alexandria as late as the 1930s. In the 1860s, the Civil War in America and the abolition of slavery in 1865 had led to an expansion of cotton agriculture in Egypt, which had been a traditional slaving society and a centre of the slave-trade since the 16th century. In the context of integration into the world market under Muhammad Ali (1769–1849), Egypt became a country with a massive non-domestic slavery, above all on the large sugar plantations of Upper Egypt and the cotton plantations of Lower Egypt, which made up 40% of all arable land in the 1860s. Peter returned to Switzerland and settled in Fürstenau GR, where he was active as a model farmer, a pioneer of cooperative housing and as the founder of the first rural hospital of the canton. Jacques Ambrosius returned to Switzerland in 1867 and settled in Chur. The city’s Villa Planta (built 1874–75, today the Art Museum of the Grisons) and Villa Planta in St.Moritz (erected in 1883) testify to his activities as a builder and a patron. 


Albeit a land-locked country at a great distance from any major colonial port (320 km to Marseilles, 600 km to Nantes, 600 km to Amsterdam, 700 km to London, 1400 km to Cadiz, 750 km to Hamburg), Switzerland has made a number of important structural contributions to the European colonial project. Since they cannot be assigned to one single Caribbean country, they shall be set out in the following chapter.

4.1 Anti-Black Racism and Ideologies Relevant to Caribbean Economic Space

=> Johann Caspar Lavater (1741–1801) from Zurich was an important figure in the development of «racial science». He is known for his contributions to the field of physiognomy, which pretended to assess a person’s character or personality from their outer appearance and thus became a theory of morality and racial superiority. Lavater categorised black Africans as «animal-like» and «limited», and in his books spread ideas of contemporary authors who argued that tribal societies were unable of cultural development, that even without slavery there would be no progress, and that slavery was after all not a very hard fate. Lavater, Swiss popularizer of the physiognomic school, was enthusiastically welcomed in France (nine editions of his L’Art de connaître les hommes par la physionomie in half a century) and in England. He was also in contact with and influenced by Petrus Camper (1722-1789), whose theory of the «facial angle» became one of the stepping stones of anti-black racism. In fact, in volume 4 of his Essays on Physiognomy, Lavater claimed that he had used the facial angle for analysis before Camper. A facial angle of 100° was found with Greek gods, an angle of 80° was typical of humans worthy of that term (such as himself), those with angles of 70° like «the Angolan negro and the Kalmyk» were losing all traces of human likeness. They were followed by orang-utans (58°) and macaques (42°).

=> Isaak Iselin (1728–1782) from Basel, philosopher of history and politics and secretary of the Republic of Basel from 1756 until his death, published his Geschichte der Menschheit (History of Humanity) in 1764, in response to works by Montesquieu and Rousseau. In Book 1 («Psychological Considerations on Man»), Iselin had this to say: «Thus the south is prone to laziness and weakness of the body, limitation and depression of the mind, calm and contentedness. Thus the cold north is characterised by bodily strength, listlessness of the spirit, stubbornness of the mind, restlessness, and dissatisfaction, whereas the benefits of the body and of the mind are manifoldly distributed in the temperate zones. Thus slavery and timidity are the fruits of the south, unrestraint and courage the quality of the north, and freedom and virtue the lot of the temperate lands.» In Book 3 («On the State of Savagery»), he argued that those peoples to whom a mild sky and fertile land had granted a happy organisation had apparently left behind the state of savagery, whereas those stricken by stupidity and living – without restraint – in rough climes and on barren soil would hardly be able to overcome that state.

=> Swiss media of the time reported on the 1763 Berbice slave rebellion (see 1.4) and the indigenous Pontiac’s Rebellion in the Great Lakes area of the same year in a clearly partisan manner, as if it was their own interests (and not those of the British, of the Dutch, or of the American settlers) which were at stake. The following quotes from the Alter und neuer grosser Staats-, Kriegs- und Friedens Appenzeller-Calender published in the Canton of Appenzell Ausserrhoden in 1765 betrays the ruling discourse, i.e. the discourse of colonial dominance:

«The Blacks on the island of Berbice, which belongs to the Dutch, rose in rebellion, and it is pitiful to read with what cruelty they killed the Christians.»

«The English in North America were confronted with an even bigger rage from those inhumane brutes. (…) During the siege of Fort Detroit, such atrocities took place as to make mankind tremble: In an attempt to sally out, one of the Indian chieftains was killed. As soon as his father had learnt the news, he took one of the English captains who had been captured and forced him to say his prayers over the dead body of his son. He was massacred thereafter, and his heart was torn from his body and devoured by the Indians; the body of another Englishman was boiled in a cauldron and feasted on; his skin was made into tobacco-bags.»

«The English as well as the Dutch have immediately sent reinforcements in order to resist the rebels and to bring them to heel, and, as we have been informed so far, most colonies have by now been freed from the rebels and again enjoy the desired peace and quiet.»

=> Christoph Girtanner (1760–1800) from St.Gallen was the son of merchant banker Hieronymus Girtanner (1730–1773) and Barbara Felicitas née Wegelin and became a short-lived but influential author, physician, and chemist. He was a cousin of internationally cross-linked merchant banker Daniel Girtanner (1757-1844), with whom he was in communication. Christoph Girtanner studied in St.Gallen, Lausanne, Paris, Edinburgh, and London and received his doctorate from Göttingen University in 1782. He was later made Privy Councillor to the Duke of Saxe-Coburg. In his Abhandlung über die venerische Krankheit (1788), he quoted reports on the reduced sex drive of indigenous men in the Americas, for which their lack of beard was considered a sign. This was, according to Girtanner’s sources, in stark contrast to the voluptuousness of the indigenous women:

«When the Europeans first landed there, the women sought the embraces of these foreigners with a lust that almost bordered on rage. Without this extraordinary attachment of the Indian women to the Europeans, America might never have been conquered. They threw themselves voluntarily into the arms of the cruel companions of Pizarro and Cortes…»

For Immanuel Kant, Girtanner’s book Ueber das Kantische Prinzip für die Naturgeschichte (1796) confirmed his own position of a racial hierarchy, as is substantiated by Kant’s reference to Girtanner in Anthropologie in pragmatischer Hinsicht (1798). Girtanner had taken over Kant’s idea that the indigenous Americans were of Mongolian origin and stated that this race ranked «still far below even the Negro». Girtanner explained that «the disgusting smell of the evaporations peculiar to the negroes seems to be partly due to the warmth of the climate». For Girtanner, the malodorous sweat was characteristic of the «negro race» and was particularly strong in Africa. That smell was allegedly so strong that it lingered in places where negroes had stayed long after they had gone. These malodorous evaporations were said to be strongest with negroes from Angola and weakest with those from the Senegal. On the question whether the orang-utan was a human or an ape, Girtanner argued that that could only be decided if orang-utans were able to beget children with humans. Although he stated that none of the stories he was going to draw on were trustworthy, he then quoted several authors who had written of orang-utans having sex with black women, of orang-utans in Sumatra who were so «horny» and in love with the local womenfolk that these were afraid of pregnancies, about orang-utans raping black women, of a hairy «bastard» having been born to a woman who had had sex with an orang-utan, of orang-utans abducting «negro women» in order to keep them for themselves, of «negro women» who had been made pregnant by big apes and had given birth to monsters or to apes, of apes at the Cape of Good Hope having sex with women. 

In his book Ueber das Kantische Prinzip für die Naturgeschichte (Göttingen 1796), Girtanner had this to say about Romani people, Africans and Jews:

«It seems as if nature in each human race […] has developed germs and natural predispositions appropriate to the climate in which it found itself, but stifled the rest […]. The gypsies give an example of this: for in almost four hundred years they have not yet managed to become farmers and manual labourers. Likewise, one also notices that among the many thousands of negroes who have been set free […] not a single one is engaged in a business that could actually be called work. This sentence is even confirmed in the case of the varieties. The Jews, a breed of white people accustomed to the Oriental skies, still remain in Europe, despite their long stay among us, averse to all real work, and seem to be quite incapable of it.» 

=> In 1833, Marc Warnery (1797-1836) from Morges in the Canton of Vaud, plantation manager in Suriname since 1823, had this to say about the execution of a slave accused of rebellion:

«This sentence, which will appear frightful to all civilized people, is necessary here, when one considers how few in number we white people are, and that we are dealing with beings without instruction, almost brutes, for whom any sentiment in the soul is unknown and who respond only to physical pain. The goal was to make an impression on the multitude [of slaves].»

=> John Jacob Flournoy (1808–1879) from a family of Huguenots who fled to Geneva in the 16th century was the son of one of the largest plantation-owners and slaveholders of Georgia. He became a champion of the expulsion of all African-American slaves from the United States on grounds of their supposed inferiority to the white race. In several letters from Flournoy to the black abolitionist Frederick Douglass, Flournoy excoriated free blacks for their presumed arrogance to southern and northern whites, charging them with resistance to God’s divine plan for the African race to remain inferior, and advising them to move permanently to Liberia. In his «Essay on the origin, habits, and c. of the African race: incidental to the propriety of having nothing to do with Negroes» (1835), he advanced the Biblical argument that Ham’s descendants, who were Negroes, were cursed for his scoffing at his father. Flournoy went even farther than that by arguing that Christ had not intended that Blacks should be called «brethren», for if he had, this would have fostered amalgamation. According to Flournoy, the original men were either white or red, and black was a degeneration from the standard colour. Thus, he would place the Negro on the lowest plane of the races. In New York, Flournoy asserted black ignorance, obscenity and viciousness.  In a partial division of his father’s estate, he was awarded about twenty slaves. He refused «to receive them» and asked that they be sold and the money invested in bank stock or in some other good security. The slaves (among them Scipio, Nelly, Joshua, Mahaly,  Grace, Sally, and Dolly) were sold to his brother Robert Willis Flournoy (1802-1844), who was later accused of whipping them so cruelly that they all died. But it appears that in spite of this incident John Jacob Flournoy always kept a few slaves, and at the end of the Civil War, he had about a dozen black children and adults. 

=> In 1849, Scottish historian and essayist Thomas Carlyle (1795–1881) anonymously published his racist pamphlet Occasional Discourse on the Nigger Question. It propagated the vision of a feudalist, paternalistic society in the West Indies that would treat the now free blacks with sternness and keep them in a state of inferiority similar to serfdom. Carlyle largely drew from the writings of Carl Ludwig von Haller (1768–1854) from Berne, professor for constitutional law and politician, who had argued in 1818 in his Digression on Slavery that slavery was neither morally wrong nor abhorrent nor a crime, but a reasonable system of reciprocal rights and obligations.

=> In his lecture «Über die Menschenraçen» (On the Human Races), held at the annual meeting of the Swiss Natural Scientists in Basel in 1838, Dr. Friedrich Fischer (1801–1853), Professor of Philosophy and Rector of Basel University, started on the assumption that there were four «races»: the Causacian, the Mongolian, the African, and the American. He described the skin of the African as «damp and malodorous» and, by analogy with the animal kingdom, his «slanted skull» as «a reminiscence of stomach formation» in the evolutionary process. The skin of the African with its «malodorous and dampish secretion» reminded Fischer of «the mucous membrane of fish and molluscs». He then treated the peculiarities of character of the four «races» in accordance with the four classes of vertebrates and saw a marked «avidity, namely voraciousness and the sex drive» reflected in the «negro» and the fish (as a «stomach animal»). In contrast, he defined the Caucasian’s character by his «freedom over his own nature and his capacity to develop towards a free intelligence». All other races were denied the ability to enter into a process of history. The meeting of 12–14 September 1838 in Basel’s «Casino» was attended by nearly 200 members and guests from all over Switzerland, who can – without exaggeration – be called the intelligentsia of the day, with most of the major Swiss patrician families holding offices in politics and universities being represented. Nothing is know of a protest against Prof. Fischer’s lecture. The only one to take the floor was Louis Agassiz (see below), who demanded the subject to be taken up again in one of the subcommittees.

=> Swiss scientist Louis Agassiz (1807-1873) from Môtier in the Canton of Fribourg (see also 1.5.3) has been called «the most influential scientific racist of the 19th century» (Alex Marsh). He made a career in Europe as a glaciologist and ichthyologist, and from 1846 until his death he lived and worked in the USA. He divided mankind into races, postulating a clear hierarchy: He defined the «white race» as superior and creative, and described the «black race» as «ape-like», incapable of establishing a culture and not belonging to the same mankind as the whites. He categorically rejected miscegenation, considering it the cause of cultural deterioration. He described mixed race «hybrids» as inferior and wanted to force the state to adopt racial policies, including spatial separation of races as well as quickly getting rid of «hybrids». His ideology influenced Ralph Waldo Emerson in his racist «English Traits» (1856), the thinking of the fascist poet and Mussolini-admirer Ezra Pound, the doings of John Kasper, Ku-Klux-Klan member and militant racist in the fight against the Civil Rights Movement. The thoughts of Louis Agassiz can be traced as far as the Nazi racial hygienists.

=> Just like the letters of Louis Agassiz (1807­–1873) and Jakob Laurenz Gsell (1815–1896) to their mothers, or the letters of Henri de Saussure (1829–1905) to his family, the letters of their contemporary, Bernese patrician Ferdinand Karl Rudolf von Steiger (1825 – 1887), to family and friends are testimony to a deep-rooted (Swiss and European) colonial racism and ideology of white supremacy. Von Steiger had bought Vitoria plantation in São Jorge dos Ilhéus, Bahia, from fellow Swiss Gabriel von May (1791–1870). In 1855, he wrote to bis brother Albert von Steiger in Berne:

«Life among among Negroes is horribly repugnant to me & yet I must probably submit to living with them. What the Negrophiles blather about the sad lot of the Negroes is nonsense & lies; not the Negroes – their masters are to be lamented & pitied & they are the true slaves of their slaves. You are zealous about the wickedness & depravity of your European officials, workers, etc. But I can assure you without exaggeration that they are better than the negroes, not only because I know them & can therefore compare them with the latter, but also because it is impossible that there is anything worse or as bad in the world as the negro. A bad labourer or servant in Europe is sent away & another taken & one is thus relieved of every annoyance & all labour. Not so with a bad negro; his master must, nolens volens, put up with him & be annoyed with him daily & feed & care for him without advantage. You will probably say: why is such a subject not beaten up? To this I can reply from my own experience & that of others that this is impossible: He gets used to light chastisement & doesn’t mind it; if you come down too hard on him he runs away or hangs himself & you lose your capital. You can’t sell such a guy either, because nobody wants to risk his money on him. Among the common, uneducated part of mankind, the negro slave is the happiest being, the only being in the world that never has worries. His master must provide for everything: He may be industrious or lazy, healthy or sickly, may have children or not. He works his 10–12 hours a day, if he doesn’t want to be ill & that’s that. In return, he gets his 3⁄4 pounds of meat and the equivalent of 5 pounds of potatoes in vegetables, with the necessary accessories and his ration of brandy every day, whether he works or not, on workdays as well as on Sundays and holidays. Twice annually a full suit for the working days & once a Sunday suit & the necessary bedding. Furthermore, he receives his solid, homely house, calculated to be spacious according to the size of his family, together with the necessary utensils; plus a garden behind the house & a piece of land as large as he wants, in order to work in his free time, from which an active negro derives not little benefit. Finally he has the faculty & necessary relief to raise sheep, pigs & feathered cattle & to hunt & fish as much as he likes & can. So you see that, in spite of the fact that all necessities of life are amply provided for, innumerable sources of acquisition are open to them for the attainment of the superfluous, of luxury. If a Negro falls ill, he enjoys the most careful medical treatment & during the convalescence, which he naturally likes to make as long as possible, there is no lack of strong broths, old wine, etc. If a Negress comes down, she is often dispensed from all service for several months, receives everything that is necessary on this occasion & as long as the child lives, a monthly bonus in money. Compare this fate with that of our workers, even in the regions where they are best off & you will certainly decide, without much thought, which are happier. Only, of course, you will make the objection: That is all well & good, but the slave lacks the most precious good, freedom. – Error & delusion! – As long as he is a slave, he lacks it, but he has all the means at his disposal to acquire his freedom in a shorter or longer period of time. […] I cannot give you a more convincing example that the Negro, in general, is quite indifferent to his freedom, hence unworthy of it, than that I myself know Negro slaves who are masters & owners of numerous slaves (hence even mulattos), who could therefore buy themselves free at any moment & still retain a handsome capital for their maintenance & who prefer to remain & die in slavery. Why? Because the negro is so terribly lazy & indifferent to everything that at most he is forced by blows to make up his mind & undertake a change in his status quo. […] The Nagó, a Negro tribe from the east coast of Africa, are a notable exception…» 

=> Adolphe Pictet (1799–1875) from a Geneva Huguenot dynasty of bankers, scientists, and mercenary officers with global networks was greatly admired by Henri de Saussure, mineralogist and entomologist from Geneva. Adolphe Pictet has been called «a hard core exponent of the racism of his day» (Pieter A.M. Seuren). He saw an ascending scale from the ape to the «negro» to the European, and he held that «the negro tends more towards the animal than the European type does». According to Adolphe Pictet, the «Indo-European race … was destined by Providence to rule one day the entire globe … and was … privileged among all other races by the beauty of its blood, the gift of its intelligence …».

=> Arnold Guyot (1807–1884) from Neuchâtel, a Swiss and American (racial) geographer and a friend of the «scientific racist» Louis Agassiz, outlined his views on race in his books The Earth and Man (1849) and The Biblical Cosmogony in the Light of Modern Science (1884). The former, extremely popular in the USA, argued for Northern intellectual acuity, for European imperialism and imperial occupation of the tropics: «It is reserved for the European race not only to exhibit the most perfect phase of Human Civilisation but to impress that civilisation on other races of the world.» On black Africans he had this to say: «The progress of the Negro would never develop from within, but necessarily be imposed from without.» And the intricate coastline of the northern continents as opposed to that of the southern ones was for him proof that the global north was more appropriate for the development of mankind.

=> Carl Vogt (1817–1895), a friend of Agassiz‹, was originally from Germany and played a part in the 1848 revolution. He then fled to Switzerland where he became professor of Geology in Berne and Zoology in Geneva, where he was the first rector of the reformed university. He was naturalised in 1861 and served as a federal MP 1856–61, 1870–71 and 1878–81. As a polygenist evolutionist, he believed and taught that the «Negro race» was related to the ape and that the «white race» was a separate species to «Negroes». In his Lectures on Man: his place in creation, and in the history of the earth (1863) he argued that the «Germanic type» and the «Negro» stood at the opposite end of human forms. According to Vogt, black and white children developed in parallel intellectually. «But no sooner do they reach the fatal period of puberty than, with the closure of the sutures and the projection of the jaws, the same process takes place as in the apes. The intellectual faculties remain stationary, and the individual – as well as the race – is incapable of further progress.»

=> Gottfried Keller (1819–1890), renowned Swiss novelist from Zurich, has two of his protagonists spend time in a colonial context without making any effort at exposing its dimension or reality of violence and suppression. Pankraz («Pankraz, der Schmoller», 1856) leaves his hometown Seldwyla for Hamburg, and from there sails to America. The «New World» represents for him the frontline of the civilised world, which he does not like with its disorder. He therefore hurries back to his ship and sets off for «ancient, hot India», where he becomes a soldier of the British East India Company. He works at the office of the Regiment’s Commander and rises to the rank of a subaltern officer. He spends his time in this exotic environment hunting, gardening, and doing administrative work. He then escapes from a love affair and re-joins his regiment, which is involved in fighting «wild mountain tribes on the outermost border of the Indo-British Empire». This is probably a historical reference to the so-called Sikh Wars (1845–46 and 1848–49), fought between the Sikhs and the British and resulting in the British conquest and annexation of the Punjab, at the cost of tens of thousands of Indian and thousands of British lives. Pankraz is promoted to the rank of lieutenant, later captain, and he spends two years mainly trying to prevent «the burning of Indian women» (the Indian custom of «sati»: widows sacrificing themselves by sitting atop their deceased husband’s funeral pyre). Just like slavery and cannibalism in Africa by European powers, the Hindi practice of «sati» was used as a justification by British imperialists: «White men are saving brown women from brown men.» (Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak in Can the Subaltern Speak?. To forget his loved one, Pankraz decides (in Paris) to join the French Army in Africa. He goes to Algiers, and – having been promoted to colonel – amuses himself with lion-hunting. Like India, North Africa is merely used as an exotic foil of nature for the projection of the protagonist’s inner emotional and amorous struggles. 

=> The second protagonist set temporarily in a colonial context by Gottfried Keller (1819–1890), renowned Swiss novelist from Zurich, is Martin Salander («Martin Salander», 1886). He comes from the provincial town of Münsterburg in Switzerland, becomes very rich in Brazil with the cultivation and trade of coffee and tobacco, loses everything to a fraudulent financial scheme, returns to Brazil and regains his wealth. His son also travels to Brazil to continue his father’s business there: Arnold Salander expands his father’s estate and finds a capable Swiss «for operation and supervision», who will soon be involved in the business transactions. Although the only way to get rich twice in Brazil through coffee and tobacco is by being involved in chattel slavery, a professor of German literature at Zurich University in 2020 speculated vaguely if Salander might have become rich through emigration or perhaps as an engineer. Slavery as a possibility was not even mentioned.

=> As opposed to «Martin Salander» and «Pankraz, der Schmoller», Gottfried Keller’s novella «Don Correa» is really set in a colonial context, but only for the sake of providing an exotic background to an unbearably sexist, Eurocentric and paternalistic love-story. At a time when the dimension and the horror of transatlantic slavery had become fully visible and was being wildly debated both in the Americas and in enlightened abolitionist European circles, Keller managed to write a novella as if the world of the «Die drei gerechten Kammacher» had been transferred to the Atlantic. In his 1882 novella, the half historical 17th century protagonist, Portuguese naval hero and statesman Don (sic!) Salvador Correa de Sa Benavides, governor of Rio de Janeiro, fails to find in Donna Feniza Mayor de Cercal his desired spouse. Although he has been appointed Vice-Admiral, his amorous adventure in Portugal ends in turmoil, fighting, executions, and disappointment, and he returns to Brazil. Ten years later he is sent to West Africa to wrest away Benguela from the Dutch, which he manages to do. He establishes contact with the «Negro King of Angola», described as a «terrible tyrant» and a «desert lion», living with a hundred wives in a society of cannibals. The king sends his sister, Princess Annachinga, to negotiate, and she arrives with herds of elephants, giraffes, lions and tigers (!) in chains. A conflict arises, but before departing, Annachinga leaves him with the slave woman she has used as a stool to sit on: beautiful Zambo. Her skin is not black, but brown, hair is not as «woolly» as with the «negroes», her features are «noble» and reminiscent of «ancient Egyptian women». Don Correa falls in love with her, and at the same time senses «the silent lament and sorrow of suffering nature». He lifts her to her feet, kisses her on both cheeks, thus «marking her tenderly as his property». He swears to himself to put at the disposal of the «heathen slave human and Christian freedom and self-confidence». He has her christened, with himself being the baptismal witness, and he chooses «Maria» for her new name. In a series of further adventures, Don Correa saves her from the fanatical Jesuits, gives her a ring, kisses her again, and sends her to Rio de Janeiro in order to «have her acquainted with Christian morals and a good way of life». He is then appointed commander in Angola and rules the kingdom for several years. He returns to Rio with the plan to marry her and the fantasy of having a painting made for her in which «Zambo-Maria is being christened in the Queen of Sheba’s costumes and with two blackamoor kings holding the baptismal font». However, he finds that she has been kidnapped by the cunning Jesuits and taken to Portugal. After another series of adventures, he manages to find and to liberate her. Out of gratitude she embraces his feet, whereupon he lifts her to her feet again, gives her a new ring and marries her. Her wedding dress is made of «heavy white silk fabric», and Donna Maria Correa still considers herself her husband’s slave. He now becomes her teacher, as he gradually makes her «understand the freedom of her soul» and describes to her «the honour and right of a Christian wife». The real 17th century Don Correa (and apparently also Keller’s fictitious one) continued to commit himself and to fight for the colonial and slave-trading power of Portugal for all his life, both in Brazil and in Angola. 

=> The Swiss chocolate industry started and thrived for a lengthy period of time on slavery-produced cocoa from the Americas and West Africa: In 1819, François-Louis Cailler (1796-1852) created the oldest still existing Swiss chocolate brand by converting a mill near Vevey. He had spent four years as a chocolate apprentice in Torino. In 1826, Philippe Suchard (1797-1884) set up a chocolate factory in Serrières, canton Neuchâtel. Charles-Amédée Kohler (1790-1874) opened a chocolate factory in Lausanne in 1830. His son taught Rudolf Lindt (1855-1909), a distant cousin, how to make chocolate. Jean (Johann Jakob) Tobler (1830–1905) from Lutzenberg in the Canton of Appenzell Ausserrhoden came from a branch of the same family as Johannes Tobler (1696–1765) from Rehetobel, who in 1736 had emigrated to the Carolinas to become a slave-owner himself. Jean Tobler founded the company that later was to invent the iconic Swiss chocolate «Toblerone». Giuseppe Maestrani learnt the trade of chocolate-making in Lombardy. His son Ludovico «Aquilino» Maestrani (1814–1880) from Aquila in the Blenio Valley (Canton of Ticino) learnt chocolate-making from his father in Lugano and sold chocolate in his shop in Via Nassa 1826-1829. After migratory years 1846–1852 in in Italy and Germany, he opened his first shop in Lucerne (Krongasse) in 1852, before moving to St.Gallen in 1859, where he had the luxurious «Marmorhaus» (House of Marble) built in the city centre. In 1859, Swiss chocolate factory Maestrani (St.Gallen, E Switzerland) still imported cocoa beans from Suriname, where slavery was abolished as late as 1863. But the Swiss chocolate industry of today ignores or deliberately hides its historical slavery-roots, which is in itself a kind of racism. A case in point is the «Home of Chocolate Museum» in Kilchberg (near Zurich), which exhibits 4000 years of chocolate history without mentioning the slaves a single time. Moreover, the cocoa and chocolate history is inextricably bound up with that of slavery-produced sugar.

=> Members of the cosmopolitan DeSaussure (or de Saussure) family from Geneva, many of whom settled in South Carolina, played important roles in the formation of an anti-black racism that spanned the centuries and the Atlantic. Henry William de Saussure became a lawyer, state legislator and jurist, who defended slave-owners› interests and warned of the «ultimate effects of a degrading, calumnating democracy.» He advocated the abolition of the slave trade (but not of slavery) because «…that leaven of barbarism which was heretofore continually infused into the mass…» would now be withheld, which could mean «…that the descendants, born and bred in the country, may gradually become a docile, and in some degree a civilised people.» In the Denmark Vesey trial, however, he was rather critical of the charges of conspiracy. Horace-Bénédict de Saussure’s grandson was Henri de Saussure (1829–1905), mineralogist and entomologist from Geneva, whose letters to his mother and various members of his family (Voyage aux Antilles et au Mexique, 1854-1856) reveal a deep-seated racism and European arrogance (see 1.7.3 Saint Domingue and 1.8 Jamaica). Henri de Saussure met the «scientific racist» Louis Agassiz in Cambridge, Mass., in 1856. In her Old Plantation Days. Being Recollections of Southern Life Before the Civil War (1909), Nancy Bostick De Saussure (1837–1915), a direct descendant of Henry William de Saussure, drew an idyllic picture of the ante-bellum south with a slave-holding family DeSaussure whom she believed to have have treated their slaves with kindness and who were loved by their «darkies» so much that even after emancipation that relationship did not change (when one Louis McPherson DeSaussure acquired Beaufort Plantation, it had a size of 700 acres and an enslaved workforce of 480). However, what the old lady really thought of those slaves is revealed in the following quotation:

«My father and mother inherited most of their negroes, and there was an attachment existing between master and mistress and their slaves which one who had never borne such a relation could never understand.

‹Uncle Tom’s Cabin› has set the standard in the North, and it seems useless for those who owned and loved the negroes to say there was any other method used in their management than that of strictest severity; but let me tell you that in one of my rare visits South to my own people, the old-time darkies, our former slaves, walked twenty miles to see «Miss Nancy» and her little daughter, and the latter, your dear mother, would often be surprised, when taken impulsively in their big black arms, and hugged and kissed and cried over «for ol› times› sake.»

When I would inquire into their welfare and present condition I heard but one refrain, «I’d never known what it was to suffer till freedom came, and we lost our master.» Yes, Dorothy dear, a lot of children unprepared to enjoy the Emancipation Proclamation were suddenly confronted with life’s problems.

I have beside me a letter from a friend, now in South Africa. She says in part: «I am sure you, too, would have thought much on the many problems presented by this black people. It is perfectly appalling when one thinks that they are really human beings! Human beings without any humanity, and not the slightest suggestion that there is any vital spark on which to begin work, for apparently they have no affection for anybody or anything, and it is an insult to a good dog to compare them to animals.»

Such, my dear child, is the African in his native country at the present day, the twentieth century, and such was the imported African before he was Christianized and humanized by the people of the South.»

=> Henri Léopold de Saussure (1866–1925), son of Henri de Saussure (1829–1905), was born in Creux de Genthod, outside Geneva. He became an officer in the French navy, serving in Indochina, Japan, China (on the gunboat «Aspie» cruising the Yangtze River), and taking part in the Dahomey campaign. He then turned to sinology and ancient Chinese astronomy. De Saussure was a «scientific» racist, who wrote of «unbridgeable divisions between the superior and lower races». Moreover, he was convinced of the superiority of the Indo-European («Aryan») languages over the Semitic ones, including Arabic. He was inspired by the elitist and racist writings of Gustave Le Bon, and influenced by the racism of Joseph Arthur de Gobineau (Essay on the Inequality of the Human Races). Under the Vichy regime, he was praised for his racial supremacism.

=> Auguste Forel (1848–1931) was a Swiss neuroanatomist, psychiatrist and eugenicist. While he held progressive views on women’s emancipation, sexuality, nationalism, militarism and social reform, he must be considered an important proponent of eugenics and racism. His trip through the Caribbean in 1878 on the private yacht of a French aristocrat betrays a deep-seated contempt for non-European cultures and societies. On his voyage from Jamaica to Barbados and on to St. Lucia, he stated that he could no longer stand «the stench of the negroes». He commented on Jamaica: «Order on the island is exemplary, at least externally. But inside, the Negroes are hardly any better than anywhere else.» On Martinique, he visited the «cruel negro king of Dahomey» and described him as «the fat and somewhat daft looking king». In Holland, in 1910, he gave a lecture on «Malthusianism or eugenics», in which he had this to say:

«I would add that pious missionaries, Englishmen and North Americans, have for a long time plagued themselves in vain, and for other (religious) reasons, with making similar experiments with Negroes. I say in vain, because no education has ever succeeded in making a cultural race out of the Negroes. Enough time, effort and money have been wasted on them.»

In 1911, Forel commented on the dangers of mixing with «creatures of inferior mental capacities», such as certain people in Ceylon or the Congo Basin:

«These are not a danger for our race as they are doomed anyway. Considerably more danger is posed by particular races, above all the negroes, who are physically strong and robust, extraordinarily fertile, but mentally inferior, who have learned to adapt to our culture extremely well. When they have adapted to our culture, they corrupt it and our race through sloth, lack of ability and by creating such awful, mixed races as the Mulates. By carefully observing the situation in the southern states of the USA, it is easy to be convinced how negatively the negro element, as it increases, affects our culture.»

In 1912, he thus clarified his position: «Of course, one should not misunderstand me. In no way do I doubt true racial differences, according to natural science, nor do I agree with mixing in inferior races such as negroes.» In his posthumously published «Rückblick auf mein Leben» (My Life in Retrospect), he wrote: 

«Finally, the question of the human race itself. Which race is useful for the continuation of mankind and which is not? And if these lowest races are useless, how we should gradually eliminate them.»

=> In 1863, the Swiss federal government was asked in a private member’s bill by MP Wilhelm Joos from Schaffhausen to take legal action against those compatriots in Brazil who bought and sold and owned slaves. The Swiss House of Representatives («Nationalrat») with 64:4 voted against the move. In 1864, Wilhelm Joos again submitted an application asking for the federal government to write a report on the question of slave ownership by Swiss citizens in Brazil. In 1864, the report by Swiss scholar Johann Jakob von Tschudi (1818-1889) was submitted to the House by the federal government. It held that it was neither unreasonable nor illegal nor immoral for Swiss citizens to hold slaves. It was rather beneficial and expedient. A Swiss consul, said the Swiss government, could not be expected to stand in the kitchen and do housework himself. That thought was unbearable, and so it was perfectly acceptable to own slaves. The federal government of today excused their predecessors of 1863 by saying «their reaction had been marked by the predominant norms of the 1860s».

=> In 1860, Adolf Guyer (1839-1899) from Neuthal (Canton of Zurich) travelled to the USA to see where the raw material processed in his father’s cotton mill came from. In his travel diary, he argued that the slaves› living conditions were not so bad after all, that slave revolts like the ones in Cuba aimed at eradicating the white man from the face of the earth, that primitive African slaves became civilized on the American plantations, that slavery was a necessary evil, that the great nations of antiquity (the Greeks and the Romans) had already practiced slavery and that, if God had not wanted slavery to exist, HE would have abolished it long ago. The man who held that some were born to rule and some to serve later became a cotton entrepreneur, the founder of a HSBC predecessor bank, a railway tycoon, and a politician.

=> Jacob Burckhardt (1818–1897) from Basel was a world-famous Swiss historian of art and culture and an influential figure in historiography. In his university lectures Reflections on History (1868-1871), later published as a book, he took anti-semitic, anti-democratic and racist positions. He differentiated between higher races and «lesser races», «negro peoples», «savages» and «semi-savages». On the latter, he wrote, «For such peoples are from the outset a prey to everlasting fear; their religions do not even give us a standard for the first signs of the birth of the spirit, because among them the spirit is destined never to come to spontaneous birth.» Later he raised the questions (without answering them), «How far are inferior peoples held in their uncivilized condition by their religions of fear? Or do those religions subsist because the race is uncivilizable?» Of Abessynians, he thought very little and claimed, «The Christianity of Abyssinia and other totally degenerate or mentally inferior peoples…»

=> In the context of Jean-David Ramel (1757-1819) from Château-d’Oex in the Canton of Berne/Vaud (W Switzerland), who owned a plantation in Saint-Domingue, local historian R. Campiche wrote in a historical review in 1948 that after the Haitian revolution, the estates of Saint-Domingue fell into ruin, because «the Black, who strives to destroy, does not care to rebuild».

=> In his Geography Textbook for Higher Education of 1876, Johann Jakob Egli, Professor for Geography at Zurich University, wrote: «The intellectual capacities of the negro seem to be inferior to those of other races, and since they have always been considered inferior beings, even the oldest history finds negroes in slavery.»

=> In 1899, Dr. Albert Maag, state grammar school teacher for History and Classical Language in Biel, published «Geschichte der Schweizertruppen in französischen Diensten während der Restauration und Julirevolution (1816—1830)». On pp. 126 ff., he argued that Swiss mercenaries had had a much harder fate than the slaves in the Americas. Whereas the latter were only forced to work, free from danger, and were cared for and fed by their masters at old age, the poor mercenary, after a life full of dangers, was refused financial assistance by the Swiss cantons on his return from foreign service and saw no alternative but suicide.

=> In 1895, two years after the death of her husband, who was from the Rosenberger family from Bilten in the Canton of Glarus, Mollie Ragan Macgill Rosenberg (1839–1917) from a family devoted to the Confederacy used her wealth to establish the Galveston Veuve Jefferson Davis chapter of the «United Daughters of the Confederacy», whose president she remained until her death. That organisation has been accused by many of «advocacy for white supremacy». In 1911, during the height of the Jim Crow era with its new legislation against free Blacks, its violence, and its voter intimidation, the statue «Dignified Resignation» was erected at Mollie Rosenberg’s behest, who thus expressed her devotion to the «Lost Cause» of the slaveholding South. From the «Galveston Monument Project» website:  «In light of current public discourse over race, racism, black history, and the growing awareness of the presence of confederate statues within our landscapes, the Rosenberg family name is at stake, as is the reputation and perception of Galveston itself.»

=> When in the Upper Valais region the Simplon Tunnel Project was launched (construction periods 1898–1906 and 1912–21), a new neighbourhood consisting of rather simple barracks was built for the numerous Italian tunnel workers in Naters around 1899. This was soon nicknamed «Negro Village» (today: Quartier Feld), allegedly because of the darker skin of the migrant workers resident there. But the following source reveals other undertones. In a letter dated 16th January, 1900, the local priest, Ignaz Amherd, wrote to the Bishop of Sion, Adrien Jardinier: «These Italians are a poor people, most of them have no education, no religion, no sense of shame, they live like indigenous people («Naturmenschen»). Theft, fraud, murder, immorality, blasphemy is innate to them – with only a few exceptions. Only few of them ever go to church on Sundays, especially the women folk are missing there.»

=> Henry Hotze (1833–1887) from Rümlang in the Canton of Zurich was the son of Rudolph Hotze (1802–1849), captain in the French Royal Service. Henry emigrated to Alabama around 1850, where he was naturalised in 1856. He was trained as a journalist and translated racist tracts from French into English in support of slavery. One of his mentors was the physician, scientist, and author Josiah C. Nott, a collaborator of the Swiss-American racist Louis Agassiz. It was Nott who enlisted Henry Hotze to translate Arthur de Gobineau’s«Essai sur L’inégalité des Races Humaines»into English. Hotze added his own introduction of more than 100 pages to the book, which is  considered  today to be one of the earliest and most influential examples of scientific racialism. Hotze joined the 3rd Alabama Infantry Regiment and was transferred to the office of the adjutant general in Richmond, Virginia, in 1861. He was then sent by the War Minstry of the South to Europe, where in 1863, he became a paid commercial agent and unofficial propagandist for the Confederate States in London. He edited the propagandist newspaper «The Index» from 1863–1865. He died in Zug, Switzerland. His writings promoting a scientific hierarchy of race-based intelligence were used by white supremacists as a justification for slavery. He is seen by many as perhaps the South’s most effective propagandist abroad.

=> Edmund von Schumacher (1859–1908) came from an old patrician Lucerne family. He was born in Naples because his father was General of Naples-Sicily at the service of the House of Bourbon. His grandfather had been an officer in the Swiss Guards of Louis XVI. Edmund von Schumacher became a member of the Swiss Federal Parliament (the state chamber), and in 1904/5 studied the human rights situation in the Congo Free State of King Leopold II. However important the report by the «International Commission of Investigation» (1905), which he co-authored, was for the disclosure of a criminal and brutal regime responsible for the death of millions of Congolese, it is also a testimony to Schumacher’s deep-rooted racist and white supremacist views. It aimed at excusing colonial violence and reiterated myths which have always made up the colonial ideology. It praised Leopold II for having introduced into this «dark and mysterious continent the benefits of civilisation» and for organising a state in that immense territory where «security now reigned». Africa was, in the eyes of Edmond JanssensGiacomo Nisco and Edmond de Schumacher (who was the brother of the Belgian honorary consul in Lucerne), a continent that had suffered from excesses of slavery, human sacrifices, despotic «chiefs» and the horrors of cannibalism. The report refrained from condemning all forms of colonial violence, because corporal punishment was – in the eyes of «any one familiar with colonial affairs» – necessary for «barbarous peoples». The credibility of the «entire class of witnesses, the blacks» was called into question by arguing that «the black of the Congo has not the same notion of truth that we have». Moreover, the inhabitants of the Congo Free State were generally qualified as «naturally indolent» and as follows, «It is well understood that we have to take into account the precocity of the native and the fact that his intelligence reaches its apex at the age of thirteen of fourteen.»

=> Charles Pierre de Frédy, Baron de Coubertin (1863–1937) was a French educator and historian, who came from an aristocratic family. He is known as the father of the modern Olympic Games and the founder of the International Olympic Committee. In 1922, Coubertin had left Paris permanently to move to Lausanne with his wife, daughter and son. He died in Geneva, where he had moved in 1934, and Lausanne made him an honorary citizen in 1937. The «Olympic Capital» still commemorates him with a stadium (Stade Pierre-de-Coubertin), a statue (IOC headquarters), a bust (near Casino de Montbenon), a plaque (Villa Mon Repos), a «homage to the French genius of sport» (website of the International Olympic Committee) and with his tomb (Bois-de-Vaux cemetery). All this in spite of Coubertin’s visceral racism. He had absorbed the racial theories of Joseph Arthur Comte de Gobineau, as this Coubertin quote exemplifies: «The races are of different value and all others should pledge allegiance to the white race, which is of a superior essence.» In 1890, he wrote of French colonialists: «With what moving gaze do you not follow the audacious men who travel the black continent and valiantly spill their blood to plant our three colours once again on a native hut»? Coubertin criticised the 1904 St. Louis games, not because of their performative competitions during the «Anthropology Days» (which exploited «primitives» from around the world to support racial stratification), but because he was afraid that «black men, red man and yellow men learn to run, jump, and throw and leave the white man far behind them». In 1908, he saw the role of Olympic sport in «bringing to perfection the strong and hopeful youth of our white race, thus again helping towards the perfection of all human society.» Africa for him was a continent «behind the times» and with «peoples still without elementary culture» but with «individual laziness». He nobly conceded to Africans «an innocent gentleness that is not without its charm», but also «sudden outbursts of ancestral violence». Coubertin rightly spoke of himself as a «fanatical colonialist» and deplored that «the theory of equal rights for all human races leads to a political line contrary to any colonial progress.» In his Ode to Sport written for the fifth Olympics in Stockholm in 1912, he thus eulogised sport: «You strive directly and nobly towards perfection of the race, destroying unhealthy seed and correcting the flaws which threaten its essential purity.» That he contacted the German Olympic Committee after Hitler’s rise to power with Olympic Games in Berlin in mind was only consistent. In exchange for these services, Hitler tried to put Coubertin forward as a candidate for the Nobel Peace. Ironically, Jessie Owens‹ triumph in Berlin made the worst of Coubertin’s 1904 nightmares come true.

=> The racial theories of Rudolf Steiner (1861­–1925) are being debated between Anthroposophists and outside critics. Steiner’s defenders argue that his voluminous published works do not contain any racist elements or that his racist thoughts belong to an earlier period of his life. According to Steiner, the «lower races» or cultures were in need of being educated, which at least can be termed a paternalistic form of racism. Steiner’s Anthroposophy was no doubt built around a racial view of human nature arranged in a hierarchical framework. He held that a succession of five «root races» had arisen in the distant past: Polarians, Hyperboreans, Lemurians, Atlanteans, and Aryans. The Aryan root race had emerged, according to Steiner, on the lost continent of Atlantis, and the Atlantean root race had been preceded by a still older root race that had inhabited the lost continent of Lemuria; contemporary non-white and indigenous communities were the degenerate remnants of these earlier races. The following quotes by Steiner are indications of a specific anti-Black or colonial racism:

«To what extent are uncivilized peoples capable of becoming civilized? How can a Negro or an utterly barbaric savage become civilized? And in what way ought we to deal with them?» (The Occult Significance of Blood, 1906)

«The black or Negro race is substantially determined by these childhood characteristics. If we now cross over to Asia, we find a point or centre where the formative forces of the Earth impress permanently on man the particular characteristics of later youth or adolescence and determine his racial character. Such races are the yellow and brown races of our time. If we continue northward and then turn in a westerly direction towards Europe, a third point or centre is reached which permanently impresses upon man the characteristics of his adult life». (The Mission of the Individual Folk-Souls, 1910)

«Everything that gives the Ethiopian race its particular characteristics arises because the Mercury forces boil and simmer in the glandular system of the people concerned».  (The Mission of the Individual Folk-Souls, 1910)

«As a result, everything in Negroes connected with the body and the metabolism is actively developed. They have, as people say, a strong drive, instincts. Negroes, then, have a strong instinctual life. And since essentially, they have the sun element, light and heat, on the surface of their bodies in the skin, there is a completely different metabolism as if the sun itself were cooking inside them. That is where their instinctual life originates. It is constantly cooking inside Negroes…» (Lectures to workmen at the Goetheanum, 1923) 

«The Negro race does not belong in Europe and it is of course nonsense that it now plays such a large role in Europe». (Lectures to workmen at the Goetheanum, 1923)

«The white race is the race of the future, working on the spirit». (Lectures to workmen at the Goetheanum, 1923)«If the blue-eyed and blond-haired people were to die out, people would become increasingly stupid unless they developed a kind of cleverness which is independent of blondness. It is the blond hair which actually leads to cleverness». (Lectures to workmen at the Goetheanum, 1923) 

=> Carl Gustav Jung (1875–1961) was a Swiss psychiatrist and psychoanalyst, who founded analytical psychology. He was interested in non-European cultures and travelled to North and Central Africa, as well as to South America and India, to study collective experience and what he referred to as «primitive» cultures. Like many European intellectuals of his age, he was influenced by the thinking of twentieth century anthropologists who distinguished between so-called «primitive» and «civilised» mentality. Critics have argued that his theories became racist when he equated primitive states of mind (unconscious process) with so called «primitive» people. Moreover, he has been accused by many to have fostered anti-Semitism and to have held National Socialist sympathies, because when Hitler took power in 1933, he praised him as the «true leader» (der wahre Führer), as an embodiment of the «Germanic spirit» (germanischer Geist), and an «incarnation of the people’s soul and their mouthpiece» (Inkarnation der Volksseele und ihr Sprachrohr). Jungians have defended him, arguing that he was a man of his time and that his positions changed over the years. The following quotes are meant to illustrate Jung’s anti-black or colonial racism:

«The psychological peculiarities of the Americans exhibit features that would be accessible to psychoanalysis, since they point to intense sexual repression. The reasons for repression are to be sought in the specifically American complex, namely living together with the lower races, more particularly the negroes. Living together with the barbarous races has a suggestive effect on the laboriously subjugated instincts of the white race and drags it down. Hence strongly developed defensive measures are necessary, which manifest themselves in the particular aspects of American culture.» (Summary of a 1910 Jung lecture,Collected Works, Vol. 18) 

«Even today, the European, however highly developed, cannot live with impunity among the negroes of Africa; their psychology goes into him unnoticed and unconsciously he becomes a negro. There is no fighting against it. In Africa there is a well-known technical expression for this: ‘going black’. It is no mere snobbery that the English should consider anyone born in the colonies, even though the best blood may run in his veins, ‘slightly inferior’. There are facts to support this view.» (Collected Works, Vol. 10, p. 121) 

«An incident in the life of a bushman may illustrate what I mean. A bushman had a little son whom he loved with the tender monkey-love characteristic of primitives. Psychologically, this love is completely auto erotic – that is to say the subject loves himself in the object. The object serves as a sort of erotic mirror. One day the bushman came home in a rage; he had been fishing as usual, and caught nothing. As usual the little fellow came running to meet him, but his father seized hold of him and wrung his neck on the spot. Afterwards, of course, he mourned for the dead child with the same unthinking abandon that had brought about his death.» (Collected Works, Vol. 6, p. 239) 

«For though a child is not born conscious, his mind is not a tabula rasa. The child is born with a definite brain, and the brain of an English child will not work like that of the Australian black fellow but in the way of the modern English person. The brain is born with a finished structure, it will work in the modern way, but this brain has its history.» (Collected Works, Vol. 18, p. 41) 

«When you observe primitives, for instance, you will see that on the slightest provocation or on no provocation whatever they doze off, they disappear. They sit for hours on end, and when you ask them ‘What are you doing? What are you thinking?’ they are offended because they say: ‘Only a man that is crazy thinks he has thoughts in his head. We do not think.’ If they think at all, it is rather in the belly or in the heart.» (Collected Works, Vol. 18, p. 10) 

«The expression of religious feeling, the revival meetings, the Holy Rollers, and other abnormalities are strongly influenced by the Negro, and the famous American naivete, in its charming as well as its more unpleasant form, invites comparison with the childlikeness of the Negro.» (Collected Works. Vol. 10, p. 45) 

=> The «Julius-Klaus-Foundation for Genetic Research, Social Anthropology and Racial Hygiene» (Julius-Klaus-Stiftung) was founded in Zurich, Switzerland, in 1921 with support from the Canton of Zurich and Zurich University. Article 13 of the foundation’s charter stated the purpose as «all efforts based on scientific principles ultimately aiming at the preparation and implementation of practical reforms to improve the white race». This article was deleted as late as 1971. Members of the foundation and scholars in its wake were linked to racialised research by European colonial powers (Rudolf Martin, dubitable pioneer of anthropometric measurement techniques and instrument, in British Malaysia, Eugène Pittard in the Balkans, Otto Schlaginhaufen in German New Guinea). Moreover, they were in close contact with internationally active problematic or racist figures such as Charles DavenportPaul BrocaErnst HaeckelEugen FischerOtmar Freiherr von VerschuerAugust ForelOtto RecheErwin BaurFritz LenzErnst Rüdin, and Alfred Ernst. The latter was rector of Zurich University 1928–1930 and in 1905/1906 carried out anthropological research in the Dutch colonial territories in Southeast Asia (Malayan Archipelago, Ceylon, Singapore, Java, Sumatra), where he profited from the imperial infrastructure. His second research expedition of 1930–1933 took him to India, Indochina, Java, and Bali. In 1916, Otto Schlaginhaufen, who was president of the «Julius-Klaus-Foundation» 1922–1968, identified the presence of African and Asian colonial soldiers in Europe in the context of WWI as a major danger for racial purity. On the other hand, Schlaginhaufen had profited from German military escorts during his 1907/1909 field trip to German New Guinea, where he carried out anthropometric research on indigenous inhabitants. According to him, every racial hygienist drew a line, «…which the tendencies towards racial mixing should not cross: the boundaries of the white race». All of the above was published in Pascal Germann’s 2015 dissertation «Laboratorien der Vererbung» (Wallstein). In January 2018, a complaint was filed with the Zurich university administration against Dr. Pascal Germann on suspicion of unfairness in science. Descendants of Alfred Ernst’s basically accused Dr. Germann of having made false statements in his dissertation: of falsifying, omitting or arbitrarily interpreting data and repeatedly describing researchers of the 20th century as cooperators with research institutes of the Third Reich, as racists, profiteers from colonial power asymmetries and the like. Dr. Mitchell Ash of the University of Vienna independently investigated the allegations and determined in his expert opinion of 18 March 2019 that there was no evidence whatsoever of scientifically unfair conduct by Dr. Germann and that the allegations were a mixture of distortions, insinuations and factual errors.

=> In 2019, Peter Buser, 82-year-old Swiss banker, author, businessman and sponsor of ice-hockey and classical music events, said in a televised interview of his girl-friend from the Dominican Republic: «She has to be in a subservient position, because I am the master (…). She used to be a slave and now she is a subservient woman. (…) 200 years ago they were all slaves in Santo Domingo…».  

4.2 Marine Navigation

Naval expeditions, the triangular trade and maritime commerce in the colonial era set the need for better navigation tools (instruments like the astrolabe, the sextant and precision timepieces). This led to a fierce competition between colonial powers and likewise between scientists including astronomers, mathematicians and finally watchmakers. The following Swiss played a role in this:

=> Ferdinand Berthoud (1727-1807) was a watchmaker and a scientist from Plancemont (Canton of Neuchâtel), whose main credit was the development of a robust marine chronometer for measuring longitude on the high seas. In 1745, he moved to Paris, and in 1753 was made a «Master Watchmaker» by the French king. In 1764, he became an «associate foreign member» of the Royal Society in London. In 1768, the two sea clocks built by Berthoud and financed by the King were tested on the corvette Isis during a voyage from Rochefort to Saint-Domingue and back.In 1770, Berthoud received the title of «Horloger Mécanicien du Roi et de la Marine» and was commissioned by the king of France to produce twenty marine chronometers.

=> Pierre-Louis Berthoud (1754-1813) from Plancemont (Canton of Neuchâtel) together with his uncle Ferdinand manufactured and repaired the sea clocks supplied to the French and Spanish navies.

=> Abraham-Louis Breguet (1747-1823) from Neuchâtel was apprenticed in watchmaking in Neuchâtel and Versailles. In 1775, he set up his watchmaking company in Paris, where he soon became famous for his innovations. In 1814, Breguet became a member of the «Bureau des Longitudes», and in 1815 was appointed as chronometer-maker to the French navy.

=> A number of scientists from Basel (N Switzerland) made important contributions to naval architecture: Johann Bernoulli (1667-1748) and his brother Jacob Bernoulli (1655-1705) worked on the mathematics of ship sails; Leonhard Euler (1707-1783) made a study into ship stability (the best way to place the masts on a ship); Daniel Bernoulli (1700-1782) researched the best shape for a ship’s anchor and created the principle in fluid dynamics named after him and relevant for the movement of ships in open bodies of water.

=> Jost Bürgi (1552-1632) from Lichtensteig in the Canton of St.Gallen (E Switzerland) was a watchmaker, inventor, mathematician and astronomer. By 1586, he was able to calculate sines at arbitrary precision, using several algorithms to calculate tables which were important for navigation at sea. In 1585, he built the first metal sextant.

4.3 African and European Logistics

The Swiss have made a number of contributions to the logistics of slavery in Europe and Africa itself, which cannot be assigned to an individual region in the Americas but whose «front end profiteers» might well have been in the Caribbean. Among these is also marine insurance.

=> In 1652, Isaac Miville (from Basel or Fribourg) laid the corner-stone for the Swedish slave-castle Cabo Corso (today Cape Coast Castle in Ghana).

=> David de Pury (1709–1786) from Neuchâtel, son of Jean-Pierre de Pury (founder of Purysburg, USA, and slave-owner), was active in the slave trade from London in the 1730s. In 1736, he established himself as a merchant in Lisbon and gained a fortune through a monopoly in the Pernambuco Brazil-wood trade, through financial services and the diamond trade. In 1762, he became the banker of the King of Portugal. He was a shareholder in the «Companhia de Comércio de Pernambuco e Paraíba», established in 1759 and trading slaves from Angola to Brazil.

=> Barthès de Marmorières (1763–1811) from the city of St.Gallen, was colonel of a Swiss regiment and «maréchal général des logis» of the Swiss Guards in Versailles. In 1779, he asked to be put in charge of a company of troops in the colonies in the rank of captain.

=> Jan Willem (Baron von) Hogguer (1755-1838) from a St.Gallen family (Högger) who had owned a plantations in Suriname (see under Suriname and Guyana), was the Dutch Ambassador to the Portuguese court in Lisbon from 1783–1790. In this function he had to deal with such affairs as the conflict between France and Portugal over the slave-trade stronghold Fort Cabinda in Angola (1783/84), a ship of the Westindian Company that had stopped a Portuguese ship near Cape Caïre (1785), and the fact that «France had engaged in an exclusive slave trade on the Gold Coast» for six years (1786).

=> During most of the 18th century, the French town of Lyon served as a hub for commercial relations between Switzerland and both Spanish America and the French West Indies (mainly Martinique and Saint Domingue): export of textile products, import of indigo, other natural dyes, and coffee. Swiss merchants (among theme 15 from Berne, 11 from St.Gallen and 10 from Neuchâtel) were organised in the so-called «nation suisse». The following merchant families from St.Gallen were represented in Lyon: Zollikofer (Sollicoffre), Scherer, Schlumpf (Sellonf), Fitler, Locher, Högger (Hogguer), Schobinger, Hochreutener (Horutener), Kunz (Cuentz), Wegelin, Kunkler (Councler), Studer, Scheitlin (Scheidlin), and Fingerlin (Finguerlin). From outside St.Gallen and unhampered by the city’s guild regulations came the families of the Zellweger (Zellweguer) from Trogen AR and the Gonzenbach (Gonzebat) family from Hauptwil. Scheitlin and Fingerlin traded textiles with Cap Français (Saint-Domingue), and in 1750, Councler et Cie. made a deal with a trading house at Cap Français. 1717-1724, Jean Henri Gonzebat, partner in the merchant company «Specht et Gonzebat», traded in textiles (mainly silkwares and cloth) and bullion (piastres) towards the Americas. Their European trading space comprised Paris and Geneva and such port (and triangular trade) cities as Marseilles, Bordeaux, La Rochelle, Nantes, Saint-Malo and Rouen. Jacques Christophe Gonzebat (1734-1777) from the same St.Gallen family became a merchant in Pondichéry (French/British India), where he died at the age of 43. The brothers David and Sébastien Cuentz from St.Gallen started as a textile trading company in 1700. Around 1715, they went into banking, and their financial activities extended from Switzerland to southern Germany, northern Italy, southern France, Spain, and Holland, comprising such cities as Amsterdam, Marseilles, Paris, Saint-Malo, Barcelona, Madrid, Lisbon, Seville.

=> When the ship «La Galathée» was prepared in La Rochelle in 1735 for her slave-trading triangular voyage, the ship’s equipment was insured for 20,000 pounds, the cargo (to and from the colonies) for 32,000 pounds. The insurance sum was divided up between 19 individuals or companies with a sum each of between 500–3000 pounds. Among them were the Sollicoffre, a family of merchants from the City of St.Gallen established in Lyon and Marseille. The ship departed in 1738 and carried on board textiles, distilled beverages, gun powder, rifles, cowry shells, and iron bars. The places of slave purchases were the Windward Coast, Cape Mount and Cess (today’s Liberia), and the Ivory Coast. Only 19 slaves (males: «nègres», females «négresses», boys: «négrillons», girls: «négrites») were traded. A slave insurrection off Cap La Houe ended by the ship being blown up, with most of the slaves killed and some of the sailors drowned.  

=> François Adolphe Pierre Cottier (1780–1843) from a family established in Rougemont (Canton of Berne/Vaud) and with relationships to other globalised families like the Schérer (St.Gallen) and the Marcuard (Berne) had his formative years in Lyon. He became a merchant, a banker, and one of the administrators of the Banque de France. In 1816, he helped to create the «Compagnie royale d’assurances maritimes». In 1823 and 1825 he communicated his interest in financing the young Haitian Republic, but his suggestions were not considered.

=> For their imperial expansion towards the east (Southeast Asia, Japan, Vietnam, India, Ceylon, and Persia) and towards the west (Africa, North America, the Caribbean, Guyana und Brazil), the Republic of the Seven United Netherlands – contrary to populous nations like France or Britain – was badly in need of foreign manpower: sailors, soldiers and members of the civil professions. The Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie (VOC) was founded in 1602, the West-Indische Compagnie (WIC) in 1621, and the Middelburgse Commerzielle Compagnie (MCC) in 1720. The Swiss served in all of them: 2000 were at the service of the VOC from 1670-1794, 300 of which managed to rise into the status of civilian employees. The largest contingent came from Berne (800), 310 were from Geneva, Zurich and Basel contributed 230 each, and 60 came from Schaffhausen. 180 Swiss served in the WIC, which from its beginnings made huge profits from plantation slavery, the sugar and the gold trade. The MCC, which organised 113 triangular slaving expeditions, had 35 Swiss on their payrolls from 1720­–1807.

=> Towards the end of the 18th century, when Transatlantic slavery and the plantation system was in full swing, there were – according to the French legal historian Guy Antonetti – six important European business centres («the big business hexagon»): London, Amsterdam, Geneva, Lyons, Bordeaux, and Nantes. In all these places, Swiss bankers and merchants played important roles.

=> During the time of «prohibition», France’s ban on the manufacture and import of indiennes textiles (1686-1759), the Swiss indiennes industry flourished. French Protestants (Huguenots) who had fled religious persecution emigrated to Switzerland and established companies near the border. Enormous wealth was brought to producers in Geneva and Neuchâtel, from where the industry spread to Berne/Aargau, Zurich, Basel, Appenzell Ausserrhoden and Glarus. Johann Rudolf Wetter (1705–ca. 1767) from Herisau in the Canton of Appenzell Ausserrhoden established a large indiennes manufactory in Marseilles, which in the middle of the 18th century employed 700 specialised workers. After his business failed in 1755, he launched a new enterprise in Orange, where 500 workers produced some 17,000 cloth panels in 1762. In 1785, the Fabrique-Neuve factory in Cortaillod NE became the largest producer of indiennes in Europe with an annual production of 160,000 cloth panels. In 1830, there were in Geneva, Neuchâtel and Bienne about 21 indiennes manufactories employing nearly 3000 workers. A considerable proportion of the Swiss indiennes production went into the slave trade, where indiennes panels were considered «l’argent de la traite» (the currency of the the slave trade) by historians of slavery. For example, Swiss fabrics made up 75% of the value of goods in a ship called «Necker». The «Necker» launched its voyage in Nantes in 1789, sailed to West Central Africa and St.Helena and disembarked 403 slaves in Port-au-Prince (out of 443 embarked in Africa). Moreover, indiennes manufactories with their unification of specialised workers (designers, engravers, printers, colourists, assistants, managers, etc.) under one roof were the pioneering enterprises for the industrialisation of Switzerland.

=> The «Livre des Habitants» records for Geneva in the period 1684–1792 a total of 73 immigrants working in the indiennes textile industry: manufacturers of indiennes (3), producers of indiennes textiles (4), engravers of wooden forms for indiennes textiles (6), engravers for indiennes textiles (2), printers of indiennes textiles (4), «indienneurs» (39), indiennes textile workers (14), manufacturer of indiennes textiles (1).

=> David-Henri Gallandat (1732–1782) from Yvonand in the Canton of Berne/Vaud became a marine surgeon on a French commercial vessel and made several voyages to the Guinea Coast and to Surinam in the service of the Dutch. He became the founder of the «Zeeland Scientific Society», and in 1769, he wrote «Noodige onderrichtingen voor de slavenhandelaaren» (Necessary Instructions for the Slave-Traders), which he sent to the municipality of Middelburg, because they were in charge of the slave-trading Middelburgse Commerzielle Compagnie (MCC). Gallandat argued that the slave trade was justified for two reasons: It was founded in the Bible, and it was very profitable. In his study, he made a number of recommendations to captains of slave ships: Firstly, they should buy only healthy young men, secondly the captives should be put in charge of the marine surgeon on board, who would then take the utmost care of them. Proper ventilation systems should be installed in order to provide airing, and slaves should be allowed to dance and sing during their regular stays on deck. Furthermore, cats should be taken on board to control mice and rats, and lastly, the ship’s surgeon should be provided with the best works of medicine and the necessary tools for operations, and he should inform himself both on the local climate and the peculiarities of the indigenous people.

=> Théodore Tronchin (1709–1781) from a Geneva Huguenot family made his career as a medical doctor and researcher, which led him to Leiden, Amsterdam, back to Geneva and then to Paris. His father Jean-Robert Tronchin (1670-1761) had been one of the richest bankers of Lyon and Geneva and was ruined when John Law’s speculation scheme («Mississippi Bubble») collapsed. His son Théodore became a pioneer and major proponent of inoculation for smallpox, and in 1748 inoculated his own son in Amsterdam. However, the first mass medical experiments had already been made in Saint-Domingue («Plaine de Cap») from 1745 onwards. Until the 1760s, inoculation had still not spread beyond Saint-Domingue, but became more popular when Simeon Worlock from Britain inoculated thousands of slaves at the recommendation of the French Minister of the Marine. Thus, the French colony of Saint-Domingue was an ideal experimentation ground for what was later to become common practice in Europe.

=> In Sent (Lower Engadine Valley, Canton of Graubünden) can be found the palace of the brothers Andrea Corradini (1799–1884)and Jon Corradini (built as a holiday residence in 1829). They had emigrated to Livorno (an Italian free port), where they founded a company trading in colonial goods, and where one Chasper J. Curdin founded a bank in 1808. Later, «Fratelli Corradini» had branches in Florence and other Italian cities. Corradini was called the «King of Livorno» because of his lavish lifestyle. It was said that throughout Tuscany, you could not consume coffee, sugar, pepper, rum, or cognac that did not come from the Corradini warehouses. Corradini also founded a sugar refinery in Ancona. Losses through speculation in sugar caused the company, which dominated the colonial goods trade of almost all of central Italy, to go bankrupt in 1891. One Corradini familiy member committed suicide, a Corradini son disappeared. Sugar was a slavery product until well into the 19th century (abolition of slavery in Cuba in 1883). Around 1900 there was a Corradini metal foundry in Livorno with 500 workers.

=> Benjamin Burlamacchi (1643–1697) from a Geneva family operated a thriving international trading company from Amsterdam. Burlamacchi’s firm traded in a wide variety of goods and enjoyed far-flung commercial links throughout Europe, the Baltic, Russia, India, and Dutch colonies in the East Indies and the Antilles. He died in Bengal. His daughter Adriana Wilhelmina Burlamachi (1684–1760) was a direct descendent in the female line of the Calandrini & Diodati families: powerful Geneva-based Protestant Italian banking & East Indian trading families from Lucca with trading houses in England, Netherlands, France, Germany & Switzerland. She became famous for her Marcus Lodovicus Antonius Clifford portrait with a black child, married Johan Cornelis d’Ablaing (1663-1721) at the age of sixteen. He left for the Dutch East Indies at a young age. During their marriage he was the regent of a children’s home in Haarlem, acting governor of the Cape of Good Hope, and counsel to the Dutch East Indies in Batavia where he died in 1721. 

=> Johann Viktor Travers von Ortenstein (1721–1776), of a noble family from Tumegl/Domleschg, entered his father’s regiment in Valenciennes. After a military career in the Swiss Guards, he became brigadier-general (1747), marshal (1759) and lieutenant-general (1762), and was ennobled by Louis XVI («comte», 1775). In 1775/1776, he offered to raise a Swiss regiment for the colonies. He acquired the episcopal castle and estate of «Horn» near Constance (Germany), but spent his final years in Paris.

St.Gallen (Switzerland), 14th November, 2021

To be updated at irregular intervals.