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

By Gordon S. Brown | Go to book overview

JEFFERSON EQUIVOCATES

“We are all republicans, we are all federalists,” Jefferson said in his inaugural message to Congress. It was, to be sure, a nice rhetorical flourish, but it was also a true sentiment. The new president hoped that the defeat of the arch-Federalists meant a permanent political eclipse of their views, ones that he considered to be profoundly antirepublican, even monarchical. Moreover, the margin of his victory had been very close (as well as made possible largely through the split between the Adams and Hamilton camps), and consequently he needed to conciliate the Federalist middle-of the-roaders. It was, indeed, a good time for fence-mending, after the vituperation and animosity of the past few years.

The Republican victory, narrow as it was, nonetheless marked an important political turning point. The country itself was changing. Republican victory in the 1801 congressional elections would confirm it: the political center of gravity in America was shifting westward, away from the coastal cities, toward the small farmers of the Piedmont, and even to the new states and territories across the mountains in the “western waters.” And the new voters were largely Republican; they wanted a small government, low taxes, and cheap land. Even the seaboard states were changing politically. Not only New York had gone Republican in the presidential elections; so had South Carolina, where Charles Pinckney, the only Republican in that otherwise staunchly Federalist family, had led the upcountry voters

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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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