Toussaint's Clause: The Founding Fathers and the Haitian Revolution

By Gordon S. Brown | Go to book overview

wanted to isolate them or squelch them, and the direction of our fluctuating policy was determined by which of the groups had the current administration's ear. Successive American administrations supported first the French, then the Haitian rebels—even flirting with encouraging their independence—and then again (although with reservations) the French.

American policy toward the Haitian revolution was, of course, heavily influenced as well by the maelstrom of the long and desperate war between the European powers. But the same American economic interest groups were parties to that debate as well, and the nation's foreign policy considerations served more to inflect the tactics of our Haitian policy than to determine its fundamental direction.

The ambiguities of our policy toward the emerging state of Haiti were, in the end, a reflection of how closely balanced those competing interest groups were during most of the period under discussion in this work. It was only when the combined effects of Jefferson's embargo and the collapse of the Haitian export economy caused the maritime interests effectively to drop out of the political argument that an anti-Haitian policy became crystal clear.

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Toussaint's Clause: The Founding Fathers and the Haitian Revolution
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Foreword vii
  • Preface ix
  • Introduction 3
  • July 1790 8
  • St. Domingue 23
  • White Cockade, Red Cockade 45
  • The Cost of Neutrality 66
  • Trouble with Britain 89
  • Trouble with France 106
  • Toussaint's Clause 126
  • Creating a Quarantine 144
  • The St. Domingo Station 162
  • Jefferson Equivocates 179
  • The Leclerc Expedition 199
  • St. Domingo and Louisiana 213
  • A Risky Trade 229
  • The Clearance Act Debate 245
  • The Trade Suspended 263
  • Embargo and Neglect 279
  • Epilogue 292
  • Notes 296
  • Bibliography 310
  • Index 317
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