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The Statue of the Unknown Maroon (Port-Au-Prince, Haiti) Print E-mail
Written by Haasim   
Monday, 13 July 2009

Blog: African American Monuments & Statues
Presented By: The Black Art Depot


 The Statue of the Unknown Maroon
(Port-Au-Prince, Hait)

State of the Unknown Maroon

The Statue of the Unkown Maroon is located in Port-Au-Prince, Haiti and was erected by the government of Francois Duvalier as a reminder to everyone that the struggle for independence in Haiti was initiated by the blacks or Maroons and preceded that of the Europeanized Free Coloreds who later formed the country's elite.  

The Maroons were runaway slaves in Haiti who formed independent settlements together.  The Maroons banded together, subsisted independently and even formed armed camps.  Being a Maroon was a tough life because they had to find a way to survive amidst attacks from white settlers and increasing plantation expansion that was steadily seizing more land.   The Maroons, however, did fight back and instilled fear by raiding and pillaging plantations and harassing the colonists that lived on the plantations.

One of the most successful Maroon leaders was named Francois Mackandal. Francois Mackandal - Haitian Maroon Leader Francois was very knowledegable in how to make poisons from island plants and herbs.  This poison was then distributed to Haitian slaves who put the poison in the French plantation owner's meals and refreshments.  Francois was also able to unite different bands of Maroons and led them on raids where they torched plantations and killed plantation owners.  At one point the French were afraid that Francois Mackandal would drive all of the French out of the colonies.  Francois was eventually captured and burned alive in 1758 after being betrayed by an ally who was tortured into submission.

Maroon revolts such as the ones led by Francois Mackandal and others is what paved the way for the official Haitian Revolution which started in 1791 when Dutty Boukman, leader of the Maroon slaves gave the signal causing the allof the slaves to revolt and plunge Haiti into a Civil War.

Additional Resources

The Haitian Revolution

Discover Haitian History

Francois Mackandal

Books about the Haitian Revolution and the Maroons

Comments (1)add
written by Roger Madison Jr. , July 13, 2009
Thanks for this insight into Haitian history. It would be good to see the fulfillment of the vision and sacrifice of these first maroon revolutionaries.
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