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todayinhistory: January 1st 1804: Haitian independence On this day in 1804 French rule officially ended in Haiti, making the country the world’s first black republic. As a French colony, Haiti was largely populated with slaves and ruled by a slaveholding minority, and resentment brewed among the enslaved black majority. Inspired by the French Revolution of 1789, white planters began to push for independence from French rule as they felt underrepresented and over-taxed, thus setting the stage for an independence movement. In 1791, in one of the most remarkable events in history, slaves in Saint-Domingue (the colonial name for Haiti) seized this momentum and began a revolution which became the only successful slave rebellion in history, as it toppled the white minority rule and led to the abolition of slavery in the country. The revolution was led by former slave Toussaint l'Ouverture, nicknamed ‘the Black Napoleon’, until his death in a French prison in 1803. After a bitter struggle which saw many thousands lose their lives, the slaves of Haiti achieved their goal, defeating the French and seeing Haiti become an independent nation at the beginning of 1804. Independence was declared, and the nation was renamed ‘Haiti’, by military general and former slave Jean-Jacques Dessalines, who replaced l'Ouverture at the head of the revolution. The success of the Haitian revolution challenged the remaining slave systems of the world, especially that of the United States, as it refuted racist pro-slavery ideology that suggested African slaves were content in bondage and were incapable of political agency. : FRANCE MILITAIRE Incendie de la Plaine du Cap Massacre des Blancs par le Noirs todayinhistory: January 1st 1804: Haitian independence On this day in 1804 French rule officially ended in Haiti, making the country the world’s first black republic. As a French colony, Haiti was largely populated with slaves and ruled by a slaveholding minority, and resentment brewed among the enslaved black majority. Inspired by the French Revolution of 1789, white planters began to push for independence from French rule as they felt underrepresented and over-taxed, thus setting the stage for an independence movement. In 1791, in one of the most remarkable events in history, slaves in Saint-Domingue (the colonial name for Haiti) seized this momentum and began a revolution which became the only successful slave rebellion in history, as it toppled the white minority rule and led to the abolition of slavery in the country. The revolution was led by former slave Toussaint l'Ouverture, nicknamed ‘the Black Napoleon’, until his death in a French prison in 1803. After a bitter struggle which saw many thousands lose their lives, the slaves of Haiti achieved their goal, defeating the French and seeing Haiti become an independent nation at the beginning of 1804. Independence was declared, and the nation was renamed ‘Haiti’, by military general and former slave Jean-Jacques Dessalines, who replaced l'Ouverture at the head of the revolution. The success of the Haitian revolution challenged the remaining slave systems of the world, especially that of the United States, as it refuted racist pro-slavery ideology that suggested African slaves were content in bondage and were incapable of political agency.
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