Sagbata and his twin Damballah were gods of the Vodu, traditionally African deities. As Vodu worship left Africa and mixed with Christianity in the European colonies, Sagbata reinvented himself as "Baron Samedi", becoming more prominent among Vodu worshippers.
During a feud between two pirates, Captain Boute-Fe requested the witch doctor Shango create a new form of unbeatable servant for him. Shango petitioned Baron Samedi, who in turn requested aid from the Elder God Chthon. Through this dark union, Shango performed the first spell to create a zuvembie. Unable to counter the Chthon-enhanced spell, the other Vodu petitioned the Elder Goddess Gaia for the power to create a champion called Lord of the Loa (later Brother Voodoo) to fight the newly-created zombies.