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Haitian Revolution (1791–1804)[1] Edit

The Haitian Revolution was the world's only successful slave revolt. The successful revolution of said slaves led to the creation of the world's first free black republic.

Haiti, at first, was known as Saint-Domingue and was controlled by the French before the people of Haiti freed themselves from French colonization and from slavery. They succeeded in permanently liberating an entire island. In 1789 Saint-Domingue, producer of 40% of the world's sugar, was the most
Map finished

Map of Haiti, Red- Major Conflict Areas (Saint Domingo, Crete-a-Pierrot) Blue- Approx. boarder between Spanish and French rule

valuable colony on earth and there were over 500,000 slaves on the island. The slaves outnumbered all other people eight to one, and tensions reached a point where the white French plantation owners feared for their lives, as well as the hit the sugar industry would suffer, affecting their economic success, in the event of a slave revolt.

On August 22, 1791, a great slave uprising turned the country into civil war, and their fears became a reality. Through a period ten days, the rebels had conquered the entire northern province through an enormous revolt that left the whites only having power over a small amount of fortified camps. The rebellious slaves killed 2,000 whites and burned or destroyed 280 sugar plantations.

On April 4, 1792, the French legislature proclaimed the equality of all free people in the French colonies regardless of color; this provided equal civil rights to the Gens de Couleur, but did not end slavery

On January 1, 1804, Jean-Jacques Dessalines, the new leader under the dictatorial 1801 constitution, declared Haiti a free republic. Haiti became the second independent nation in the Western Hemisphere, after the United States, following the only successful slave rebellion in world history.

Connections to Brinton's Anatomy of a Revolution Edit


-As the demand for sugar increased, so did the demand for slaves, making the amount of slaves and work done by them increase exponentially throughout the years

-Sugar production relied on harsh manual labor, done by slaves

-The plantation owners knew they were greatly outnumbered and feared a large scale slave revolt

-Gangs of runaway slaves would raid sugar plantations, increasing tension between slaves and plantation owners

The Revolution Begins:

-Slaves join the revolution and send the country into a civil war

-Slaves outnumber whites 8 to 1

-Slaves gain fortifications and are able to defeat the French forces

-In 1801 the country is declared a free republic

Results of the Revolution:

-These slave rebellions influenced those in both the America's and Britain

-Spanish America most directly influenced --> Simón Bolívar liberates and proclaims abolition of slavery under principle of equality for all in Spanish America
-American government didn't recognize Haiti's independence before the Civil War ended in 1862, so as not to temp the South's black slaves to violently revolt demanding to abolish slavery immediately

-Many plantation owners move to New Orleans

-Haiti had to compensate for not having slaves to work on the sugar plantations to keep up the supply of sugar to the world

Timeline[1] Edit

1780 - 1790

- Saint-Domingue was one of the world’s top producers of sugar (40%)

-The most productive/successful slave colony in the Caribbean

-500,000 Slaves

-40,000 White Colonists

1790 - 1800

-Whites loose control of plantations and island because slaves vastly outnumbered them.

-1792 The slaves and rebels control one-third of the land 1793 French and British forces arrive to conquer Haiti

-August 29 1793 Emancipation of Slavery in Saint-Dominque

-July 22 1795 Treaty that said Spain ceded Santo Domingo to France

-August 27 1797 Sonthonax sail back to France

-1798 French and British forces retreat, unable to conquer Haiti

1800 – 1810

-1801 L’Overture conquers Haiti and becomes Governor- General for life

-1803: Blue and red flag is adopted

-November 18, 1803 Haiti defeats France in Battle of Dessalines

-1806: Jean-Jacques Dessalines is assassinated at Pont-Rouge

  1. 1.0 1.1 Corbett, Bob. "Haiti: Revolution Part 3." Webster University. Webster University. Web. 19 Nov. 2009. [1]

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