NewsBlack Twin Sisters Acquire Former Plantation Where Their Ancestors Were Enslaved

Black Twin Sisters Acquire Former Plantation Where Their Ancestors Were Enslaved

Nationwide — Twin sisters Jo and Joy Banner have made a significant move to reclaim their family’s heritage and protect the environment by acquiring the historic Woodland Plantation in LaPlace, Louisiana. This plantation holds deep ties to their ancestors, who were once enslaved there and took part in the 1811 Slave Revolt, a pivotal moment in American history.

The plantation’s history hits close to home for the Banner sisters, who grew up on the banks of the Mississippi River in Louisiana. They were inspired by the stories passed down through generations about the courageous individuals who fought for freedom during the 1811 revolt.

After years of discussions with the previous owner, Timothy Sheehan, the sisters finalized the purchase of the plantation for $750,000 in January 2023. This acquisition not only preserves their family legacy but also blocks plans for a new industrial facility that could worsen environmental issues in the region.

Jo and Joy Banner, founders of The Descendants Project, aim to transform Woodland Plantation into a community hub for genealogy research and discussions on environmental justice. Their initiative seeks to protect the health and heritage of Black communities in Louisiana’s River Parishes, a region already affected by industrial pollution.

According to NOLA, the sisters are vocal advocates against projects like the proposed Greenfield Louisiana LLC plant, which threatens to further pollute an area already burdened by chemical and oil industries. They emphasize the importance of preserving their community and its history amidst ongoing environmental challenges.

Through their efforts, Jo and Joy hope to provide a welcoming space for Black individuals to connect with their roots, learn about their ancestry, and engage in conversations about pressing environmental issues.


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