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flag  History of Haiti

Journey back in time to Haiti

Visit Haiti. Discover its history. Learn about the people who lived there through stories, old newspaper articles, pictures, postcards and ancestry.

Do You Have Haiti Roots? Share MY Ancestral Story!

Explored by Columbus on Dec. 6, 1492, Haiti's native Arawaks fell victim to Spanish rule. In 1697, Haiti became the French colony of Saint-Dominique, which became a leading sugarcane producer dependent on slaves. In 1791, an insurrection erupted among the slave population of 480,000, resulting in a declaration of independence by Pierre-Dominique Toussaint l'Ouverture in 1801. Napoléon Bonaparte suppressed the independence movement, but it eventually triumphed in 1804 under Jean-Jacques Dessalines, who gave the new nation the Arawak name Haiti. It was the world's first independent black republic.

There is MUCH more to discover about Haiti. Read on!

Haiti Nostalgia: Vintage Photos, Ads, and Postcards

Discover Haiti: History, News, Travel, and Stories

Add informationAdd History/News/Story
1625 - The French settled Tortuga Island and northwestern Hispaniola, naming their colony Saint-Domingue.
1665 - The city of Port-au-Prince was founded on the northwest coast by French settlers.
1670 - Louis XIV of France authorized the African slave trade in Saint-Dominque.
1749 - The city of Port-au-Prince was founded by Charles Burnier, Marquis of Larnage and named the capital of Saint-Domingue.
1751 - Slave rebellions in northern Saint-Domingue, led by François Mackandal, began.
1778 - Volunteer Haitian slaves, led by French admiral Count d'Estaing, left for Savannah, Georgia to fight against the British in the American Revolutionary War.
1792 - France's Legislative Assembly voted to give full citizenship and equal rights to all free people of color.
1803 - The flag of Haiti was created during a meeting between Dessalines and Pétion in l'Arcahaie and sewn by Catherine Flon.
January 1, 1804 - Haiti gains independence from France. Haiti is the second oldest independent nation in the Western Hemisphere after the United States.
1862 - The United States recognizes Haiti
1895 - Hayti / Haiti
Hayti, or Haiti, hā'tee, a rich and beautiful island, the largest in the West Indies, except Cuba, from which it is separated W. by the Windward Passage and E. from Porto Rico by the Mona Passage, and having N. the Atlantic Ocean and S. the Caribbean Sea. It is nearly 400 miles long, and from 60 to 150 miles broad, and comprises two republics, Hayti in the W., and Santo Domingo in the E. Area of the republic of Hayti, 9232 square miles. Pop. estimated at 572,000, of whom the great majority are blacks. Area of the republic of Santo Domingo, 20,595 square miles...
Lippincott's Gazetteer of the World: A Complete Pronouncing Gazetteer Or Geographical Dictionary of the World Containing Notices of Over One Hundred and Twenty-five Thousand Places ... Joseph Thomas January 1, 1895 J.B. Lippincott
1904 - Haiti celebrates 100 years of independence
2023 - Here's a list of places to go and things to do in Haiti:

Start your journey in the capital city, Port-au-Prince. Explore the bustling markets like Marché de Fer and Marché de la Croix-des-Bossales for a taste of local life.

Visit the Musée du Panthéon National Haïtien (MUPANAH) to learn about Haiti's history and culture.

Don't miss the Iron Market (Marché de Fer) for local handicrafts, artwork, and souvenirs.

Citadelle Laferrière:

Located in the northern part of Haiti, this historic fortress is a UNESCO World Heritage site and offers a stunning view of the surrounding landscape.

The hike to the Citadelle is an adventure in itself, and it's worth hiring a local guide to share the history of this impressive structure.


Known for its beautiful beaches, vibrant art scene, and unique Carnival celebrations, Jacmel is a must-visit destination.

Explore the colorful, colonial-style architecture and artisan workshops.

Don't miss the opportunity to experience the famous Jacmel Carnival if you visit... Read MORE...

Discover MY Roots: Haiti Ancestry

Ancestors Who Were Born or Died in Haiti

We currently have information about 22 ancestors who were born or died in Haiti.

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Ancestors Who Were Married in Haiti

We currently have information about ancestors who were married in Haiti.

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Updated: 9/13/2023 12:42:04 PM