AfriGeneas Free Persons of Color Forum
FPOC Mobile, AL
I have learned quite a bit about the FPOC and now know that my ancestors, the Chastangs, in AL would be classified as such. Many African American Chastangs can trace their roots to Jean "Dr John" Baptiste Chastang b.1739 and Louison, a freed slave. It is my understanding that Dr. John purchased Louison's freedom from his brother Joseph Pierre, and established a twenty year spousal relations (no marriage) with her, they had 10 children. Dr. John acknowledged all the children by having them baptized in the Catholic Church and in his will leaving Louison and his children, his property in Mobile county as well as slaves. Dr. John had no other spouse.
It is my understanding many white men in colonial Mobile established such relationships, since it was illegal for white and black or Mullato to marry. How were they able to get around the strict rules that were established to restrict slaves and former slaves? Were the codes just ignored (luckily)in Mobile? Was it due to the wealth and influence of the men or the influence of the Catholic Church?