Black History in Canada, Part Two

As we continue our series on Black History Month, allow me to introduce you to Marie-Joseph Angélique.

The Hanging of Angelique by Afua Cooper.

Marie-Joseph Angélique was a slave owned by François Poulin de Francheville in Montreal.

In 1734, there was a fire that started at the Francheville’s home and  destroyed forty-six buildings in the colony, including the Hôtel-Dieu hospital. Some have alleged that Marie-Joseph set the fire to cover up her plan to escape slavery with her white lover.

She was found, brought to trial and, after 40 hours of torture confessed to the crime. The evidence, however was very circumstantial. Her sentence, death by hanging, was carried out on June 21, 1734, in front of the burned remains of the Francheville’s home.

The very best place to get the full story about today’s post is at Great Unsolved Mysteries in Canadian History – once there, I suggest you visit the site for so much more! There is also a pretty good article at Hour Community by Richard Burnett.

To get a copy of the book by Afua Cooper, Hanging Of Angelique, CLICK HERE.


  1. I’m definitely going to check this book out! Thanks again! I recently read The Book of Negroes which although I know is historical fiction gave me insight into the migration of slaves + the free into Nova Scotia, which I never knew about. Do you know any books on the history of Africville?


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