John Waller, Ambassador to the Madagascar Public
John Waller was the son of Anthony and Marie Waller who were emancipated in 1863. They, and the Greene’s were transported to Tama, IA where they were taken in by the community. John was hired out to a white couple who taught him to read and write. Subsequently, he went on to school, graduated, and began his career in journalism, and later law. He was appointed by President Benjamin Harrison to serve as Ambassador. Waller wanted to develop plantations for black people so began to purchase land. The French became interested in the island and captured John Waller, imprisoning him. The imprisoning of a United States citizen was a problem which could not be tolerated. Negotiations between the US and France resulted in Waller giving up his land to gain his freedom. A ship was sent for him and he was allowed to leave.