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Ravenswood Plantation

Page history last edited by Robert Weiner 7 years, 8 months ago





Ravenswood Plantation was located on Lake St. John in Concordia Parish. Bureau of Land Management original survey map (1829), Twp 9N-10E, LA, Louisiana (North, South, East, West boundaries and Subdiv. Lines) includes the Ravenswood Plantation property. Based on the land purchases documented below, it is believed that the Ravenswood Plantation extended from Lot #26 to Lot #31.  Eventually, it may have extended further north into Tensas Parish.  The plantation may have been called Verdale prior to 1850.


Bureau of Land Management original survey map, Twp 9N-10E (1829) Users should click Basic Viewer along the bottom of the image display to see the map if they do not have the correct Plugin.


Topographic map of the Parish of Concordia, state of Louisiana (1841) Users should first navigate to Lake St. John to locate the plantation - see the map above for assistance in locating Lake St. John; the site for Ravenswood Plantation can be found by looking for the land designated "Captain Austin or Estate of Clement").


Date Constructed / Founded

Approx. 1822


Associated Surnames

Clement, Austin, Yznaga, del Valle


Historical notes

Originally from Dutchess County, NY, Samuel Clement settles in the Natchez area in the early 1800s. He does not marry until 1830 when he takes Maria Augusta Little, the daughter of William Little and Frances Boyd Little, prominent Bostonians, as his wife. The Clements have a daughter, Ellen Clement, who is born in 1832 or 1833. Samuel Clement dies shortly thereafter of cholera.


Although selling additional properties owned in Adams County, Mississippi, Maria Clement continues to maintain the Ravenswood Plantation and other properties with the assistance of William Austin and perhaps her brother-in-law, Henry Orne, a prominent Bostonian who for a time was living in Oxford, Ohio, but makes Concordia Parish his home in the mid to late 1830s.


After attempting to sell Ravenswood (probably as a result of economic downturns) Maria Clement marries William Austin in January 1839. In the sale listing in the Natchez Daily Advertiser, the plantation is described as having 3000 acres and 98 acclimated slaves, of which 65 are effective hands.


Eventually, the plantation passes to daughter Ellen Clement who marries Antonio Yznaga del Valle, a prominent Cuban planter, trader, and entrepreneur, in 1849. They continue to operate and expand the Ravenswood Plantation, as well as their other properties and business interests in Cuba, New York, and Newport, Rhode Island. The 1860 census lists Ravenswood with 145 slaves.


Associated Slave Workplaces


Consuelo Plantation - located in Tensas Parish



Associated Free Persons


Samuel Clement

Maria Augusta (Little) Clement, later Maria A. Austin

William Austin

Ellen Clement Yznaga

Antonio Yznaga del Valle

Henry Orne



Associated Enslaved Persons


In August 1824, Clement borrows $5,000 from James C. Wilkins and puts up 18 of his slaves as security:


Peter, age 34

Dorsey, age 30

Ned, age 21

Jeff, age 16

Abe, age 15

John, age 20

John, age 30

John Shepherd, age 28

Jim Wright, age 24

Jim Corn, age 19

Polly, age 32

Leah, age 25

Letty, age 22

Eady, age 22

Lena, age 21

Lewis, age 18

Betsey, age 8

George, age 6

(from Concordia Parish Courthouse Records of Conveyances D 392)



In the probate proceedings for Samuel Clement's will in 1833, the Lake St. John property was valued at $30,000 with 45 slaves. The paperwork includes the following list of slaves with ages and values:


Wilson, 45, $450

(Woman) Edith, 30, $350

Jim Whitaker, 45, $550

Mary and infant, 20, $550

Jim Wright, 40, $650

Jim Shifford, 45, $500

Charlotte, 35, $450

Ben Jones, 30, $650

John Haskins?, 27, $750

Bill Morgan, 26, $600

Geo Whitaker, 17, $750

Abram Hackett, 25, $750

George Green, 18, $450

Harry Green, 16, $400

Bill Wright, 14, $500

Charles Carroll, 16, $550

Jim Cora, 35, $300

Mike Green, 9, $200

Peter Harris, 50, $200

Nancy Green, 50, $75

Dorsey (male), 35, $400

Kilby (male), 40, $150

Hannah, 6, $200

Ann Johnson, 38, $350

Susan Bonger, 12, $250

Elsy Solomon, 3, $225

Eliza Johnson, 5, $200

Edmond Harris, 30, $550

Deborah, 26, $400

Leah, 35 $400

Frances Jackson, 25, $400

Louisa Howard, 20, $500

Betsey Stastin? and infant, 18, $600

Louisa Stephens, 13, $300

Henrietta, 14, $350

Masy Betts, 15, $400

Margaret Frazier, 18, $300

Tenah (woman), 30, $400

Eliza (deorephia?), 40, $200

Elsy, 20, $400

John Minor, 50, $250





Research Leads and Plantation Records




Miscellaneous Information


Formerly a steamboat captain, Samuel Clement was captain of the "Vesuvius," reportedly the third steamboat to venture down the Mississippi river to Natchez. Built in 1814 in Pittsburgh by Robert Fulton, the "Vesuvius" was later sold to the Natchez Steamboat Company to be used as a transport to New Orleans.


The following are documented land purchases of Samuel Clement on Lake St. John and references to those sections of the above map believed to represent these purchases:


2/1/1822: Samuel Clement purchases from David Urguhart 592 1/2 acres payable for $3,000 by 4/3/1827 [Believed to be Lot #27 on Twp 9N-10E map] (Records of Conveyances, Concordia Courthouse, Vidalia, Book D at 344.)


4/2/1824: Samuel Clement purchases 720 argents on Lake St. John from Charles B. and Helen Green upper side of tract of land now in possession of Samuel Clement and on lower side of tract of Isau Rassely (belongs to John Perkins and surveyed in name of L. James Beauvais) [Although map has the name of Frances Beauvais, it is believed that this purchase corresponds to Lot #28.] (Records of Conveyances, Concordia Courthouse, Vidalia, Book D at 534.)


5/24/1827: Samuel Clement purchases land for $2000 with 8% interest lands between Clement and John and Giles Harding original grant by Spanish gov't to Juan Ropally to James Beavois 700 argents. Paid in full May 24, 1833. [It is believed that this purchase corresponds to Lot #29.] (Records of Conveyances, Concordia Courthouse, Vidalia, Book I at 98.)


5/1830: Samuel Clement purchases 800 argents more or less fronting on Lake St. John from John and Giles Harding of Tennessee for $800 joining on upper side (John Rabille)and lower side Samuel Postlethwaite (granted by Spanish government to John Girault; acquired by John and Giles Harding from Nathan Dix by Deed (April 24, 1811) [It is believed that this purchase corresponds to Lot #30.] (Records of Conveyances, Concordia Courthouse, Vidalia, Book E at 462.)


5/3/1831: Samuel Clement purchases 607 acres of land from Sidney and Mary Smith (of Mississippi) on Lake St. John adjoining the lands of Samuel Clement. Land ownership originated from Joseph Vidal to Robert Parklinson to Elijah Smith to Smith to Clement. [It is believed that this purchase corresponds to Lot #26.] (Records of Conveyances, Concordia Courthouse, Vidalia, Book F at 47.)


2/5/1832: U.S. of America to Samuel Clement for Lot #31 Township No.9, Range No. 10 East, 146 61/100 acres. Sale recorded 3/19/1839. (Records of Conveyances, Concordia Courthouse, Vidalia, Book H at 516.)




Antonio Yznaga del Valle and Ellen Yznaga have four children: Fernando, Consuelo, Natica, and Emilie. Consuelo Yznaga comes into prominence by marrying into the British peerage when she weds George Victor Drogo Montagu, the Viscount Mandeville, later the 8th Duke of Manchester, in 1876. The marriage proves to be an unhappy one with Consuelo occasionally returning to the United States throughout the years.  Although her husband, the Viscount Mandeville, visits the plantation in 1883 and her son, the 9th Duke of Manchester, in 1901, there is currently no record of Consuelo, Duchess of Manchester, visiting the plantation following her move to the British Isles.




Clement, William Edwards. (1952). Plantation life on the Mississippi. New Orleans: Pelican Publishing Co.


1860 U. S. Federal Census - Slave Schedules, Concordia Parish, Louisiana: De Valle (sic), A. Yznaga, Ravenswood Place, 145 slaves, p. 68

Full transcription available at: http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~ajac//laconcordia.htm



Users Researching This Workplace


Robert Weiner


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