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Haitian Immigration : Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries
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Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, Photographs and Prints Division

Rev. John R. Beard, The Life of Toussaint L'Ouverture: The Negro Patriot of Hayti (London: Ingram, Cooke and Co., 1853)


On the eve of the Revolution, Saint Domingue was the richest colony in the West Indies. It was inhabited by about 30,900 whites, 25,000 free people of color and 435,000 slaves. Several thousand maroons had taken refuge in the mountainous hinterland. It is estimated that 800,000 Africans had been introduced -300,000 more than in the United States - but the brutal regime of the sugar and coffee plantations decimated the enslaved population, cutting it by almost half in less than a century.

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