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Both Haiti and the Dominican Republic share the Caribbean island of Hispaniola, but language, culture, physical appearance, and a long history of mutual antagonism and conflict - from Haiti's 22-year rule over the Dominican Republic in the early 1800s to the 1937 massacre of up to 30,000 Haitian migrants in a campaign ordered by then-Dominican dictator Rafael Trujillo - keep them apart.

Chart of the West Indies, c. 1811
Mathew Carey

Chart of the West Indies. 1811. Mathew Carey.

D13: 1798 New York, An original customs document of Archibald Gracie, famous post-revolution Scottish merchant of New York City for whom "Gracie Mansion" is named (and where most mayors of New York City (NYC) have resided).

Archibald Gracie (1755-1829), founder of the great firm of East India merchants, was born in Dumfries. He was a lifelong friend of Robert Lenox and was associated with him in many financial and philanthropic undertakings. Both were presidents of the St. Andrew’s Society of New York. This two page document shows the import of 20 hogsheads of sugar from Cape Francois, Haiti. The bill shows at $510.30. First page is a preprinted, filled including the "master" of the ship, Cheney Higbe. Schooner Friendship Dated the 12th of June, 1798.

Haiti Royal Palace

Haiti Royal Palace.

The second page is handwritten and includes details of the imported sugar. The documents are in good shape with edge wear and chipping. They are joined by a wax seal in the upper left corner.--$47 D14: 1802 Bill of lading ship Follensby sugar, indigo, bedwood, etc. sailing for Nantes, France. Capt. Tom Murfey, nice --$55 D15: 1796 ship “Amiable Matilda” brings Geneva gin from Rotterdam to Philadelphia. long and wide top-notch document. all pipes of gin listed/ charges. A+ condition --$75 D16: 1798 Santo Domingo (Haiti) - Cape Francois - Two original documents, the seals on each shown below. Titanic at 100. Captain Gracie. First the one written in English is by Jacob Mayer then the Counsul of the USA based in Cape Francois. Mr. Mayer was appointed to this position by Mr. George Washington the first President of the USA. This document shows the understanding about Mayer and what he represents.

"I Jacob Mayer, Counsul of the United States of America, resident at Cape Francois, do hereby certify that Terreblanque, figured to the annexed condemnation is Chief Clerk to the Tribunal of Commerce, established in this city and full faith, credit and authority are due to all his proceedings as such. Given under my hand and at Cape Francois, this seventh day of November, one thousand seven hundred and ninety eight". Jacob Mayer.

The second document 4 pages dated Oct. 18, 1798 which goes together with the first one. This second written in French are several areas that can be understood about a capture by the French of an American Ship named Harwich. The Master was named Capt. Driggs from Middletown, Connecticut. This document is signed by Mr. Terreblanque the person mentioned in Consul Mayer's earlier document. I do have some more information on Capt. Driggs if interested when purchasing this very historic lot. This two document lot would fit well in the most advanced collection.

Very scarce to rare early history of American/Haiti relations--$360 D17: 1796 ship “Nuestra Senora del Carmen” Spanish Brig. (navio) brings olives and wine to Newport, RI. could this be the 64 gun warship built in Havana shipyards in 1730? Spain used to rename warships after the original had been retired from service. would this be second or third with the same name?? only warships had names like this. document in nice condition, I want $110 D18: 1789 Nov. 14 - Import manifest showing a shipment of sugar from Haiti to the port of New York. For John Smith from Schooner Hope Capt. Clark from Cape Francis 15 hogsheads of sugar, 19 barrels and a bag, written by John Bancken weight Master. Shows the totals. Then shows a total for Capt. Clark, 3 hogsheads of sugar, 6 barrels, bag of coffee.

Document had been in some scrap book at one time. Shows to strips of cloth tape mounted on reverse in the high corners. They do not affect the document much. Also two strips of tape on reverse on the folds. Nice neatly done. Partial water mark middle left of document. Nice trade document--$42

Anglo American Times, August 11, 1866, London, United Kingdom


The West India and Pacific Steamship Company's steamer Mexican, Captain Miller, has arrived at Liverpool from Port-au-Prince, &c.

The most important item of news is the recommencement of the rebellion in Hayti. It was generally believed that after the recent bloody but futile insurrection, and the summary measures taken to deter other revolutionary leaders from disturbing the quiet of the small Republic, peace would have been maintained for some time. But the news the last arrival from that quarter shows that the rule of President Geffrard is not destined to remain undisturbed. A few days previous to the departure of the Mexican from Port-au-Prince the rebellion broke out with great vigour and violence in the neighbourhood of Gonaives. The rebels, after destroying everything around the town, are said to have entered it in large numbers, and sacked indiscriminately the property both of friends and foes. After a general pillage the revolutionary party set fire to several of the principal buildings, and the conflagration was not got under until one-half of the town was destroyed. Great excitement prevailed at Port-au-Prince in consequence of the report that the rebels, after sacking Gonaives, were marching in large numbers on Port-au-Prince, with the determination of reducing it as they had done Gonaives. It was also reported that much dissatisfaction prevailed amongst the Haytian troops, and that their loyalty was not to be depended on.

New York Herald , Thursday, January 27, 1870

Salnave Captured, Sentenced and Shot

Charleston, January 26, 1870

The French sloop-of-war Timier, six days from Port au Prince, arrived today and reports that Salnave was sentenced to death and shot on the 10th inst.

Jamaica and Haiti (Hayti). 1862. Weller, mapmaker.

Jamaica and Haiti, 1862. Weller.

Sylvain Salnave, President of Haiti from 1867 to 1869, refused to surrender even after his fleet had been captured, Port au Prince had been bombarded, and the grand palace had been completely destroyed by an explosion. At the instance of the British consul he escaped to Dominican territory in December 19, 1869, but was captured by General Cabral on 10 January, 1870, and by him surrendered to Nissage-Saget, who had assumed command at Port au Prince. On his return to the capital, Salnave was tried and sentenced to death by a court-martial on charges of bloodshed and treason, and was immediately executed on the steps of the ruined palace.


From 1630, the island of Tortuga was dividedinto French and English colonies. It provided a good base for buccaneers' attacks, as well as some other activities like slave trades. Tortuga saw two more successful Spanish raids in 1635 and 1638, and both times the buccaneers managed to retain possessions back.

In 1639, in order to finally establish decent defense, as the governor of nearby Saint Christopher (now St. Kitts) sent a help in Jean Le Vasseur who was promoted to the new governor of Tortuga. He built the "Fort de Rocher" on the highest rise of the island. It was enforced with 40 guns and overlooked any vessels in or near the port.

Beginner's Yoruba.

Until 1665 Tortuga was temporally captured by Spanish one more time, and than the island became a part of St. Dominique colony. The new governor, Bertrand D'ogeron had difficulties to convince the buccaneers to accept him. However, he managed to develop Tortuga even more by organizing people and strengthen its defense.

In following period, some of the greatest buccaneers such as Henry Morgan and Francois L'Ollonais launched attacks from Tortuga and became part of island history. From 1670, as the buccaneer era was in wane, the most buccaneers found a new trade like log cutting and trading wood from the island, and many others continued their piracy on the ships of foreign nations.

February 28, 1898, The Kane Daily Republican, Kane, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.

An Ex-Clerk Who Joined the Fierce Sea Rovers of
the Spanish Main.

"The Buccaneers of Our Coast" is the title of a series of narrative sketches that Frank R. Stockton is writing for St. Nicholas. In speaking of John Esquenneling, who joined the buccaneers and became their historian, Mr. Stockton says:

It must have been a strange thing for a man accustomed to pens and ink, to yardsticks and scales, to offer to enroll himself in a company of bloody, big bearded pirates, but a man must eat, and buccaneering was the only profession open to our ex-clerk. For some reason or other, certainly not on account of his bravery and daring, Esquemeling was very well received by the pirates of Tortuga. Perhaps they liked him because he was a mild mannered man and so different from themselves.

As for Esquemeling himself, he soon came to entertain the highest opinions of his pirate companions. He looked upon the buccaneers who had distinguished themselves as great heroes, and it must have been extremely gratifying to those savage fellows to tell Esquemeling all the wonderful things they had done. Esquemeling might have earned a salary as a listener.

It was not long before his intense admiration of the buccaneers and their performances began to product in him the feeling that these great exploits should not be lost to the world, and so he set about writing their lives and adventures.

He remained with the pirates for several years and during that time worked very industriously getting together materials for his history. When he returned to his own country in 1672, he there completed a book which he called "The Buccaneers of America; or, The True Account of the Most Remarkable Assaults Committed of Late Years Upon the Coasts of the West Indies by the Buccaneers, etc. By John Esquemeling, One of the Buccaneers, Who Was Present at Those Tragedies."

Caribbean 1806. Andrew Arrowsmith, Cartographer.

Caribbean. 1806. Andrew Arrowsmith, Cartographer.

From the title, it is probably that in the capacity of reporter, our literary pirate accompanied his comrades on their various voyages and assaults, and although he states he was present at many of "those tragedies," he makes no reference to any deeds of valor or cruelty performed by himself, which shows him to have been a wonderfully conscientious historian. There are persons, however, who doubt his impartiality, because, as he liked the French, he always gave the pirates of that nationality the credit for most of the bravery displayed on their expeditions, and all of the magnanimity and courtesy, if there happened to be any, while the surliness, brutality and extraordinary wickedness were all ascribed to the English.

1899. World's Fleet. Boston Daily Globe

Lloyds Register of Shipping gives the entire fleet of the world as 28,180 steamers and sailing vessels, with a total tonnage of 27,673,628, of which 39 perent are British.

Great Britain10,990 vessels, total tonnage of 10,792,714
United States 3,010 vessels, total tonnage of 2,405,887
Norway 2,528 vessels, tonnage of 1,604,230
Germany 1,676 vessels, with a tonnage of 2,453,334, in which are included her particularly large ships.
Sweden 1,408 vessels with a tonnage of 643, 527
Italy1,150 vessels
France 1,182 vessels

For Historical Comparison
Top 10 Maritime Nations Ranked by Value (2017)

  Country # of Vessels







1 Greece 4,453 206.47 $88.0
2 Japan 4,317 150.26 $79.8
3 China 4,938 159.71 $71.7
4 USA 2,399 55.92 $46.5
5 Singapore 2,662 64.03 $41.7
6 Norway 1,668 39.68 $41.1
7 Germany 2,923 81.17 $30.3
8 UK 883 28.78 $24.3
9 Denmark 1,040 36.17 $23.4
10 South Korea 1,484 49.88 $20.1
Total 26,767 87.21 $466.9

The Project

Maritime Nations, Ships, Sea Captains, Merchants, Merchandise, Ship Passengers and VIPs sailing into San Francisco during the 1800s.



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Sources: As noted on entries and through research centers including National Archives, San Bruno, California; CDNC: California Digital Newspaper Collection; San Francisco Main Library History Collection; and Maritime Museums and Collections in Australia, China, Denmark, England, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Wales, Norway, Scotland, Spain, Sweden, etc.

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