haiti historical timeline
1957 Francois Duvalier (Papa Doc) is elected president
1934 The USA withdraws its marines from Haiti
Hispaniola, the island shared by modern-day Haiti and the Dominican Republic, is located in the Caribbean Sea between Puerto Rico, Jamaica, and Cuba. It is fewer than 700 miles southeast of Florida. Haiti occupies the western third of the island and is home to nearly 10 million people. Since its independence in 1804 Haiti has been beleaguered by foreign occupation, long-term dictatorships, and political instability. It is the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere. However, the country is also renowned for its remarkable history and culture: Haiti was the first independent nation in the Caribbean, the second democracy in the western hemisphere, and the first black republic in the world.
Haiti was claimed by Christopher Columbus in 1492 on behalf of the Spanish, who renamed it Hispaniola. The Spanish proceeded to kill virtually all of the island’s native inhabitants, and French colonists would eventually import millions of slaves to sustain the colony’s plantations. In 1697 France gained control of the western third of the island and named its new territory Saint-Domingue. Saint-Domingue became France’s wealthiest colony up until 1791 when slaves, free blacks and mulattoes launched an organized rebellion. The insurrection movement ultimately became the only successful slave revolution in history. In 1804, after more than a decade of warfare, European forces evacuated their troops and residents from the former colony, which reclaimed its original name of Haiti and declared independence.
Hundreds of human rights workers, journalists and lawyers are arrested and exiled from the country.
Spanish control over the colony ends with the Treaty of Ryswick, which divided the island into French-controlled St. Domingue and Spanish Santo Domingo.
1804 – Haiti becomes independent; former slave Jean-Jacques Dessalines declares himself emperor.
2010 July – Popular anger grows over slow pace of reconstruction six months after quake.
1492 – Christopher Columbus lands and names the island Hispaniola, or Little Spain.
2013 November/December – Street protests in Port-au-Prince and other major cities, with marchers voicing discontent about various issues including an overdue election, unemployment and corruption.