Yankees in Haiti: Boston Merchant Trade in Revolutionary Saint-Domingue
Abstract: This thesis analyzes an understudied aspect of Atlantic history: the economic connections between Boston and Saint-Domingue during the early modern and early national periods. Using the Perkinses, a Boston merchant family, it explores the ways in which demand for Saint-Dominguan tropical commodities played a vital role in the development of revolutionary ideals in Boston during 1760s and ... read more70s. After American independence, James, Thomas and Samuel Perkins asserted their newborn, American right to free trade in Saint-Domingue. There, they enmeshed themselves into the colony's dynamic, slave-based economy. Not long after their arrival, the Perkins brothers were forced to confront the slave uprising that eventually evolved into the 13-year Haitian Revolution. The revolution directly challenged the brothers' beliefs on race, racial hierarchy and slavery. Through it all, however, they continued to assert their right to free trade—even if that meant taking up arms against, or trading with, black insurgents.
Thesis (M.A.)--Tufts University, 2016.
Submitted to the Dept. of History.
Advisor: Ina Baghdiantz-McCabe.
Committee: Elizabeth Foster, and Kendra Field.
Keyword: History.read less