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Haitian history not many of us know (Part II)

Black Caribbean Literature (BCL)
Calloway,Al (Author)
Newspaper Article
Publication Date:
Feb 19-Feb 25, 2010
Coral Springs, FL
African American Research Center, Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject Term:
Caribbean area, United States, Blacks, Colonialism, Haiti, Slavery, France, L'Ouverture, Toussaint, 1743?-1803, Revolution (Haiti : 1791-1804), Black history
First, the two armies all but destroyed the French plantocracy on the island then they defeated a Spanish force and huge English and French armies. In Adam Hochchild's book Bury the Chains, we learn that then-U. S. President George Washington and then-Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson, both slave owners, sent "a thousand muskets, other military supplies, and eventually some $400,000" of U. S. aid to quell the revolt now known as "the Haitian Revolution." Randall Robinson reveals more in his book, An Unbroken Agony: "Some . . . had been brought to Haiti [St. Domingue] from other Caribbean slave colonies men like the storied Boukman from Jamaica and the legendary Makandal from Trinidad, and the great general, Henri Christophe, who was born in Grenada." Blacks who escaped plantations in the United States also joined L'Ouverture's armies. Robinson reports that L'Ouverture had been the intellectual, "the African humanist, the military strategist, the administrator and, not insignificantly, the conciliator." Robinson also writes that [Jean-Jacques Dessalines] "had been, first and last, the hard-nosed soldier who believed that an enemy as manifestly unsalvageable as the French had to be, wherever possible, obliterated."