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7Robots Fantastically Terrible Podcast ep16: Dahomey Amazons, Black Panther & the 1st Successful Slave Revolution

7 Robots Fantastically Terrible Podcast Ep16: Dahomey Amazons, Black Panther & the First Successful Slave Revolution

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Episode 16: Dahomey Amazons: from Black Panther to the First Successful Slave Revolution

Today’s discussion is about a remarkable woman named Abdaraya Toya, or Victoria Montou. She was an elite Dahomey warrior, aka “Dahomey Amazon”, which inspired “Black Panther’s” Dora Milaje, was sold into slavery and later helped lead the only successful save revolt in history! The Haitian revolution. Wow! What a story.

When the Dahomean Kingdom was annexed by the French and colonized, Abdaraya Toya was kidnapped and sold into slavery in Haiti, but her incredible life didn’t end there. Not at all! She helped to train a young boy named Jean-Jacques Dessalines as a warrior. He grew up to be a leader in the revolution against France. Although in her 60s, she fought as a soldier and commanded troops in action against her old enemy. When Dessalines finally declared Haiti’s independence in 1804, he gave Montou the title of Duchess. When she died a year later, she was given a state funeral. She is still remembered as one of the great heroes of the Haitian revolution.

Fantastically Terrible Character or Creature

The Fantastically Terrible Character or Creature is the woman riding a bright blue Harley-Davidson motorcycle in Lovecraft Country season 1 episode 7. She is none other than the legendary Bessie Stringfield!

At the tender age of 16, Bessie taught herself how to ride. In the 1930s, she made several road trips across the US. She became the first black woman to ride solo through all 48 US mainland states, including the Jim Crow south.

Later, during World War II, Bessie served as a civilian courier for the US Army, carrying documents between army bases across the country, encountering plenty of racism along the way.
Eventually, she became a nurse and settled in Miami, Florida, where she established the Iron Horse Motorcycle Club, earning her the knick name ‘The Motorcycle Queen of Miami.’

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