Republic of Spanish Haiti

The Republic of Spanish Haiti (Spanish: República del Haití Español), also called the Independent State of Spanish Haiti (Estado Independiente del Haití Español)[2][3] was the independent state that succeeded the Captaincy General of Santo Domingo after independence was declared on November 30, 1821 by José Núñez de Cáceres.[4][5] The republic lasted only from December 1, 1821 to February 9, 1822 when it was annexed by the Republic of Haiti.[2]

Republic of Spanish Haiti
República del Haití Español
Flag of Santo Domingo
The Republic of Spanish Haiti in the east of Hispaniola
The Republic of Spanish Haiti in the east of Hispaniola
StatusDominican territory
CapitalSanto Domingo
Common languagesSpanish
• 1821–1822
José Núñez de Cáceres
• Independence
1 December, 1821
9 February, 1822
CurrencySanto Domingo real
Preceded by
Succeeded by
España Boba
Haitian occupation of Santo Domingo
Today part ofDominican Republic

History Edit

Background Edit

As a result of the Peace of Basel, the part of Hispaniola under Spanish administration was ceded to France, and merged with the French colony of Saint Domingue. When the Haitian Revolution triumphed and independence was declared by Jean-Jacques Dessalines, the eastern part of the island remained under French control until the criollos revolted and Santo Domingo was reconquered by an Anglo-Spanish alliance in 1809.[6]

After Santo Domingo was restored to Spanish rule, however, the government could not afford to exercise its full powers on the colony, its resources severely depleted by both the Peninsular War and the various Spanish American wars of independence. For the next twelve years, Santo Domingo's economy suffered. Most farming was solely for subsistence, little economic aid was invested in the island, the only money the royal government sent to the island was the salaries of royal employees, and, once political stability returned to Spain in 1814, its focus was on the more productive island of Cuba, leaving the administration of Santo Domingo as an afterthought. During this time, many conspiracies and juntas were established against the apparent abandon of the colony's citizens by royal authorities, but were promptly neutralized.

This period of Dominican history is known as the España Boba ("Meek Spain").

Preparations for independence (1820–1821) Edit

In 1820, Haitian president Jean-Pierre Boyer decided to prepare for a rumored Spanish military incursion into Haiti, and sent Colonel Dezir Dalmassi to nearby towns such as San José de las Matas, San Juan de la Maguana, and Azua to convince locals to join a republic that would provide them with jobs, lands, abolition of taxes in the exportation of livestock, in return of accepting the political unification of the island under Haitian rule.[7] Instead of waiting for Dalmassi's return to Haiti, Boyer decided to invade the eastern part of the Island before the separatists could finalize their intent to declare independence.[8]

On December 1, 1821, a constitutive act was ordered to petition the union of Spanish Haiti with Gran Colombia. The state of the Republic of Spanish Haiti was not supported by the population of slaves and servants, who were wary of the rule of pure whites, and preferred to unite with French Haiti, because of their abolition of slavery.[9]

In late 1821 and early 1822, Haiti sent emissaries to the central and northern parts of Spanish Haiti to promote its annexation, and the people began to raise the Haitian flag on public buildings and plazas, such as Hincha (present-day Hinche), but also in large cities like Puerto Plata (December 13, 1821), Dajabón (December 15), Santiago (December 29) and La Vega (January 4, 1822),[10][11][12] whereas other forces which opposed unification with Haiti formally declared independence from Spain on December 1, 1821.[13]

Independence (1821–1822) Edit

On November 30, 1821, at 11:30 p.m. the tropas de morenos (Spanish for 'colored/dark-skinned troops'), led by Pablo Alí and Núñez de Cáceres, stormed the Fortaleza Ozama garrison and detained Governor Pascual Real in the Torre del Homenaje (the keep) of Santo Domingo.[7] The next morning, at 6:00 am, cannon fire signalled the political change taking place.

A group of politicians and military officers continued to favor uniting the new nation with Haiti, as various elite families sought for political stability under Haitian president Boyer. A large faction based in the northern Cibao region were opposed to the union with Gran Colombia, and also sided with Boyer. Boyer, on the other hand, sought to protect his country from the possibility of either France or Spain retaking the eastern side of the island, and attacking or even re-conquering Haiti. He sought not only to maintain Haitian independence, but to maintain the freedom of its former slaves, as well as to liberate the remaining slaves in Spanish Haiti. After promising his protection to the government of Núñez de Cáceres, Boyer entered with a force of 12,000 soldiers in February 1822, after most cities and towns proclaimed its annexation to the Republic of Haiti between November 1821 and January 1822, including Puerto Plata (December 13, 1821) and Santiago (December 29, 1821).[13][10][14][15]

On February 9, 1822, Boyer formally entered the capital city, Santo Domingo, where he was met with enthusiasm, and received by Núñez de Cáceres, who offered to him the keys to the city. Boyer rejected the offer saying: "I have not come into this city as a conqueror, but by the will of its inhabitants."[10] Hispaniola was thus united from "Cape Tiburon to Cape Samaná in possession of one government."[13]

Political reforms Edit

The first public act of Boyer was to enact the abolition of slavery and promise lands to all freedmen, so they could freely dedicate their lives to agriculture in acres donated by the state.

In Haiti, the French system of private land ownership guaranteed by the state was the norm, while in the Spanish section, the predominant system was communal grounds, and a hierarchy of tenancy that clashed. By June 15, Boyer was still promising nationally donated land. To donate this land, the Haitian administration prohibited ownership of land by white Dominicans, depriving the main popular families of the country of their lands.[16]

The portion of freed slaves who did not wish to keep working with their former masters had little option but to join the military, which formed the Battalion 22, which joined the 'morenos libres' (free coloreds/dark-skinned people) under Colonel Pablo Alí constituting the principal military force in the eastern part of the island.[7]

Other cultural changes were the restriction of the Spanish language, and traditional customs, like cockfights were outlawed.[16]

Boyer enacted a rural code which was "designed to force yeomen into large-scale production of export crops. The nation, however, lacked the wherewithal, the enthusiasm, and the discipline to enforce the code".[8]

Haitian rule over the entire island lasted 22 years.Eventually, the Haitian government became very unpopular, due to the severe economic crisis that hit the country after paying a huge indemnity to France, and gave rise to many anti-Haitian plots. It wasn't until 1844 that independence was once again proclaimed for the eastern side of Hispaniola by Juan Pablo Duarte y Díez, and the independent nation of the Dominican Republic was established.[4][13][10][14]

See also Edit

References Edit

  1. ^ "Declaratoria de la independencia del 1821". Retrieved 14 April 2018.
  2. ^ a b "José Nuñez de Cáceres". (in Spanish). 23 March 2007. Archived from the original on 13 May 2014. Retrieved 6 October 2011.
  3. ^ "De la Ocupación Haitiana a la Independencia". Mundo Dominicano (in Spanish). 23 March 2007. Archived from the original on 10 October 2011. Retrieved 6 October 2011.
  4. ^ a b Lancer, Jalisco. "The Conflict Between Haiti and the Dominican Republic". All Empires Online History Community. Retrieved 14 April 2018.
  5. ^ "Haiti – Historical Flags". Flags of the World. Archived from the original on 5 May 2005. Retrieved 24 December 2007.
  6. ^ Wars of the Americas: A Chronology of Armed Conflict in the New World, 1492 to the Present. David Marley, 1998.
  7. ^ a b c Ponz, M. F (2000). Manual de Historia Dominicana. Santo Domingo: Caribbean. p. 225.
  8. ^ a b Haggerty, R. S. (1989). "Country Studies: Federal Research Division". Federal Research Division. VI: 218.
  9. ^ Franco Pichardo, Franklin J. (2009). "Capítulo XIII: Nueva Guerra de España con Inglaterra". Historia del Pueblo Dominicano (in Spanish) (8th ed.). Santo Domingo: Ediciones Taller. p. 115.
  10. ^ a b c d Franco Pichardo, Franklin J. (2009). "Capítulo XVII: El Período de la España Boba / Capítulo XVIII: Período de Integración con Haití". Historia del Pueblo Dominicano (in Spanish) (8th ed.). Santo Domingo: Ediciones Taller. pp. 176–216.
  11. ^ Amín Arias (25 July 2012). "Algo más sobre la "invasión haitiana de 1822"". Blog: Al Otro Lado del Charco (in Spanish). Retrieved 3 October 2012. (...) desde primeros de noviembre de 1821, semanas antes de la proclama de Núñez de Cáceres, muchos cabildos hispanos de la zona fronteriza habían proclamado su pertenencia a la República de Haití. Esas proclamas se sucedieron por todo el Norte y el Sur dominicano, hasta, por ponerle como ejemplo, que Pablo Báez, Alcalde de Azua, hombre blanco, terrateniente, amancebado con una negra liberta, padre de Buenaventura Báez, quien fuera presidente de la República Dominicana durante cinco períodos... se unió a Haití, luego de las proclamas de San Juan de La Maguana, Bánica, Hincha, San Rafael, San Miguel, Neyba, Puerto Plata, etc., etc.

    Todo esto sucedió en los cabildos y en las plazas de la parte Este de la isla sin que Boyer hubiera movido un dedo. Los dominicanos del este (porque es el gentilicio de todos los nacidos en la isla de Santo Domingo, como comunmente se conoce a nuestra isla) no querían una República independiente como la de Núñez de Cáceres que no abolía la esclavitud y que continuaba con la estratificación establecida por los colonizadores respecto a las clases y las razas. Es decir, los mulatos dominicanos (que eran la mayoría) querían ver reconocidos sus derechos al igual que los blancos. Los negros querían dejar de ser esclavos. Y eso la nueva república de Núñez de Cáceres no lo garantizaba.

    Sin embargo, ser parte de Haití les permitía a todos ese derecho. Cuando Boyer llegó a Santo Domingo ya todas las ciudades de la línea del Sur se habían proclamado haitianas. Él no fue quien las proclamó. Ellas mismas atendieron al llamado del Presidente de una de las Repúblicas más pujantes de la época, como era la haitiana, la primera república latinoamericana y la segunda, después de los Estados Unidos, en todo el continente americano. Boyer recibió las llaves de la ciudad porque los miembros de la élite comercial dominicana, representanda por Núñez de Cáceres, no encontraron apoyo ni siquiera en Simón Bolívar, libertador de América, quien sí apoyaba a la República de Haití porque era un país que abolió desde el primer momento la esclavitud.
  12. ^ Rodríguez, Pablo (2002). Puerto plata: Perfil histórico y económico (in Spanish). Ediciones Renovación. p. 42. ISBN 978-9-993-42278-5. Retrieved 21 May 2014. En diciembre de 1821, Puerto Plata, Santiago y algunos habitantes de Cotuí se manifestaron a favor del partido pro-haitiano. A esta proclamación a favor de un estado pro-haitiano con un gobierno en la isla, se unieron en 1822 La Vega, San Francisco de Macorís, Azua, San Juan de la Maguana y Neiba.
  13. ^ a b c d Gates, Henry Louis; Appiah, Anthony (1999). "Dominican-Haitian Relations". Africana: The Encyclopedia of the African and African American Experience. ISBN 9780465000715. Retrieved 24 December 2007.
  14. ^ a b Matibag, Eugenio (2003). Haitian-Dominican Counterpoint: Nation, State, and Race on Hispaniola. ISBN 9780312294328. Retrieved 24 December 2007.
  15. ^ Corbett, Bob. "1818-1843 The rule of Jean-Pierre Boyer". The History of Haiti. Retrieved 24 December 2007.
  16. ^ a b Manuel Moreno Fraginals; Frank Moya Pons; Stanley L. Engerman, eds. (1985). Between Slavery and Free Labor: The Spanish-Speaking Caribbean in the Nineteenth Century. Baltimore and London: Johns Hopkins University Press. ISBN 978-0-801-83224-6.