Toussaint L'Ouverture was a leader of the Haitian independence movement during the French Revolution.
Who Was François Toussaint Louverture?
François Toussaint Louverture was a former Haitian slave who led the only successful slave revolt in modern history. Standing steadfastly, he fought to end slavery and gain Haiti’s independence from European powers, France and Spain. Forming an army of former slaves and deserters from the French and Spanish armies, he trained his followers in guerrilla warfare and successfully ended slavery in Hispaniola by 1795.
Toussaint's Significance / Accomplishments
Though he didn’t live to see it, Francois Toussaint’s actions set in motion a series of global events that changed the geography of the western hemisphere and spelled the beginning of the end for European colonial domination in the Americas. Frustrated by a rebellion he couldn’t control in Hispaniola, Napoleon Bonaparte decided not to expand his empire into North America and sold the Louisiana territory to the United States in 1803. This paved the way for western expansion throughout the 19th century. Toussaint’s actions also inspired revolutions in several Latin American countries over the next 100 years and American abolitionists, both black and white, to fight for an end to slavery.