African American Freemen In Louisiana: African Americans in Louisiana had already organized their own battalion in September 1812. The state legislature of Louisiana had organized a Corp of free African Americans as part of the state militia. After General Andrew Jackson's call to arms, the Battalion of Free men of color, as they were called were joined by a second battalion of African American soldiers organized by a free Black Santo Domingan emigrant, Joseph Savary, and together they were pressed into service in December 1914 to defend New Orleans. While one battalion attended British forces at Chalmette Plains, the other built fortifications against the British attack in January 1815. Both were engaged on January 8 during the main attack by the British, and together they kept the center of the fortifications, the artillery batteries from being taken. Although the African Americans had repulsed the British assault, British sharpshooters took up positions after the battle and picked off Americans trying to rescue their wounded in the field. Savary, now a captain, led a group of African American men who routed the British sharpshooters in the last major battle of the contest. Afterward, Jackson praised the African American soldiers as having not disappointed the hopes that were formed of their courage and perseverance in the performance of their duty.