Ten economic protests that changed history

2. Slave uprising in Saint Domingue - 1791

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    An illustration of Fran├žois-Dominique Toussaint Louverture from a history book by A. Thiers. Louverture was a leader of the 1791 slave rebellion that led to the establishment of the independent state of Haiti,
    El Bibliomata/Creative Commons Attribution/File
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Between 1651 and 1791, more than 800,000 slaves were brought from Africa to the French Caribbean colony of Saint Domingue, the New World's most prosperous outpost. They worked the sugar, cocoa, and other plantations under the strict, sometimes brutal, authority of French plantation owners. By 1789, the year of the French Revolution, slaves made up nearly 89 percent of the Saint Domingue population. 

Inspired by the revolution and led by a freed slave, Fran├žois-Dominique Toussaint Louverture, the enslaved population rose up against the ruling elite two years later.  What started off as a civil war with black slaves fighting against white landowners eventually morphed into an international conflict with Spain supporting the rebels and England siding with the white plantation owners.  By the early 1800s, the rebels had founded the independent nation of Haiti, only the second revolution in the New World to create permanent independence (the American Revolution was the first) and a key event in the history of African advancement in the hemisphere. 

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