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One of the most important events in Jamaican history, the Morant Bay rebellion began following the imprisonment of a black man for trespassing in October 1865. Angry black Jamaican broke the man out of prison, resulting in arrest warrants being issued for church deacon Paul Bogle and 27 other men. Several days later, Bogle and between 200-300 men marched to the courthouse at Morant Bay, where local militia opened fire, resulting in the death of seven men. Bogle's men retaliated; in all, 18 people were killed, and Bogle's group soon swelled to about 2,000, and several white plantation owners were killed. Government troops were called in, and the indiscrimate killing of blacks began. More than 400 black Jamaicans--men, women and children--were killed, and 354 were arrested and exectuted. More than 600 others were flogged or imprisoned.
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