The Hornet incident was an 1871 diplomatic incident involving Spain, Haiti, and the United States.[1]

In January 1871, during the midst of the Ten Years War between Spain and Cuba, the Hornet (a small steamship flying the flag of the United States) arrived at Port-au-Prince, followed by two Spanish men-of-war.[2] The Hornet was charged with being a pirate, having contraband of war intended for the Cuban insurgents on board.[2] The Spanish asked that the Hornet be given up to them.[2] The United States Minister interposed, stating that the Hornet was a bona fide American steamer.[2] For this reason, Haiti refused to deliver the ship, and remained firm in this decision despite the presence of the Spanish men-of-war in the harbor of Port-Au-Prince and the open threats made by Spain's representatives.[2] On October 5, 1871, the Spanish Consul addressed an ultimatum to the Haitian Secretary of Foreign Affairs, demanding the delivery of the Hornet within 24 hours.[2]

The dispute became threatening for Haiti when the United States decided to relieve the country of all further responsibility in the matter.[2] In consequence, Congress was dispatched to Port-au-Prince, with instructions to convoy the Hornet either to Baltimore or to New York.[2] This steamer eventually left Port-au-Prince in January 1872, which put an end to the controversy between Haiti and Spain.[2]

References edit

  1. ^ "Site Map - January 20, 1871". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2022-08-22.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i Léger, Jacques Nicolas (1907). "Chapter XVII". Haiti, Her History and Her Detractors. Neale Publishing Company.   This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.