In Building the Devil’s Empire, Shannon Dawdy describes rogue colonialism as “the influence of those individuals on the ground who pushed colonial frontiers in their own self-interest”(p. 37). Instead of colonialism in the interests of king and country, colonialism is in the interests of the settlers who first established themselves in Louisiana. It is defined by self-interests of the settlers as well as a mutiny against monarchical colonialism. In its place, self-tailoring, individuality, and the influence of leaders and their own individual needs came to shape and mold the colonization processes of Louisiana. These reasons show how Dawdy’s definition represents Louisiana’s colonial period well.
From the beginning, Louisiana was not a popular place to relocate to. Many in Europe in addition to those living in more northerly areas of the United States had no desire to come to an area on the map known for its swamp creatures and diseases that killed off thousands each summer in New Orleans and other larger cities within the Louisiana Territory. Colonialism that was established by the European nations had very little luck in their efforts to push people towards settlement within Louisiana. Louisiana’s population did not grow through the effort of these Kings and countries within Europe finally leading France’s Napoleon Bonaparte to sell the area to the United States. Mercantilism had been a failure from the European standpoint and the population of the area turned to individuals looking to make money and willing to brave their fear of poisonous critters and deathly diseases to make a claim. The Creole community and oligarchy staunchly pushed for a colony founded upon goals and principles of their own choosing instead of allowing a King to establish these rules and principles of law for them. The leaders of Louisiana had a firm grasp on who controlled the area and pushed the colony away from monarchical rule towards one of independent rule by the...
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