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

By Gordon S. Brown | Go to book overview

EPILOGUE

If any good reason exists why we should persevere longer in withholding our
recognition of the sovereignty and independence of Hayti and Liberia, I am
unable to discern it.… It does not admit of doubt that important commercial
advantages may be obtained by treaties with them.

—Abraham Lincoln to Congress, December 3, 1861

For over fifty years after the embargo was repealed, Americans continued to conduct a modest trade with Haiti, even while shunning the new nation politically. It was no longer a high-risk, highprofit trade, and it was not without its troubles. King Henri, as General Christophe came to be called, preferred to do business with the British, and in 1811 he became in engaged in a commercial dispute with American traders that spoiled trade with the northern part of the island for years. Pétion, on the other hand, was slightly more ready to encourage Americans, and even made efforts to promote the sale of Haitian products in America. But it was not until Jean-Pierre Boyer ruled over a reunited Haiti in 1820 that the difficulties eased and the level of exchanges began to recover. Modest in scope, the trade all the same employed dozens of small vessels and amounted to 3 percent of total American trade in 1821.1 In 1860, the trade had grown to approximate that of the United States with Russia, but still accounted for less than 1 percent of total imports and exports. Haiti, which in the prerevolt boom of 1790 had been America's second trading partner,

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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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