Mamie Morris '.ebster,
Approximately 6.t vords
A history of THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC and a resume
of the interesting life and military activities of
its National Hero, JUAN PABLO DUARTE.'
j i 'i
*~ h4 ~
Considering the proximity of the Dominican Republic to
our shores it is strange how little has been written about
this country of :so "mai contrasts, and how uninformed the
publico is about this interesting island country, particularly
in view of the fact that for many years intimate commercial
andapolitical relations have been had with the United States.
Compared with cities of the United Statesa majority
of the Dominican towns are hoary with age. The capital city,
Santo Domingo, now called Trujillo City, in honor of General
Trajillo who handled the work of rehabilitation following
Sthe disastrous hurricane of 1930, was founded bby Columbus
on his first voyage in 1492, a ,century before Virginia was
settled and it'had began to decline almost a hundred years
before the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rook. Yet sach have
.been the vioissitudee of the country that only one city,
S--the capital, showi'signs of its antiquity. The others from
"atgs their appearance might be taken 'to be but a few decades
old. With the exception of some of the ancient ohurches
S none of the older buildings have survived the ravages of
time,' wars,uas earthquakes and hurricanes.
S'Ehe'impoverisjaent of the country.by periodic revo-
lutions had. its effeot.on the municipalities and prevented
: eFollowing'the Amerioan oooupation in 1916 .
.rV-AUMay innovations were introduced and transformation ast in.
.,Acne .r in
4?W Fr.. ..
However, withdrawals of the United States forces were begun
early in 1924, and the final evacuation of the United
States troops was rapidly carried to oonolusion.
Today the country that for many years had a past
and afuture now has a very definite present.
The ortain has gone down upon the epooh of revo-
lutions, wars, oonspiracies and destruction. That period
is of the past.
The road whioh this country has followed in grow-
ing to its present status has not been smooth, and its
leaders and-oitizenry are hoping with mapy of the problems
inherited from by-gone days. They are now enjoying greater
freedom, prosperity xat progreas,and oo-operation than
they had ever dreamed.
the following pages will give a "birds-eye" view
of the-history, and people, of the Dominioan Republio,
dramat.io and colorful to an unusual degree, and it is hoped
this rersue will whet the appetite of the readers for a
-- mse intimate stay and knowledge of the country so near
Mo. M, W.
^ -'* *, ''* '''''i*
1peooe in History
pooe in History
- Days of the Conquest 1492 1533
- Colonial Vieissitudes 1533 1(
- Changes of Government 1801 11
- First Republio and Spanish
Annexation 1844 1865
- Second Republie Revolutions
and Dietatorships 1863 1904
Epoeha in History Aaerioan Inflenoe 1904 -
Flora and ?auna
Agriculture Mining Industry
The People, Religion, Edueation, Health.
[ transportation Oomunioation Comeroe.
The Remains of Coluabus
Politio and Revolutions
[I The Fnture of The Doeiniean RepabLio
Chiefs ef State of Sante Domine
A4erioan-DiniSean ineal Conveantion of 1907.
THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
Chapter 1 .
Epooh In History-Bays of the Conquest 1492-1535
In December, 1492, when Christopher Columbus sailed
along the northern coast of the island of Haiti or Santo
Domingo, he was more enchanted with what he saw than he had
been with any of his previous discoveries. Mountains
holding high their heads, covered with verdant forests;
rivers watering.fer.tile'valleys, luscious fruits hanging
from the trees fragrant flowers carpeting the ground, the
air filled with the songs of birds. Columbus, as he gazed
in admiration upon nature's magnificence, little thought
that this beautiful island would be his final resting place.
At thq time of its discovery the island of Santo
Domingo was thickly inhabited. The native Indians were
Arawake belonging to the same race as those who occupied
t4e other larger West India Islands. The Arawaks were of
a gentle and meek disposition. Columbus lauded their kind-
'linesa and generosity. -The possession of these traits,
however, did not prevent- the from fighting bravely when
Living in the stone age, they were unacquainted with
xueful metals, but gold ornaments were used for adornment.
The older men and married women wore short aprons of cotton
or feathers; all other persons went entirely nude.
Their favorite amusements were ball games and dancing;
their religion was the worship of a great spirit and
of subordinate.deities represented by idols,, carved of
wood and stone. They lived in rude palm-thatohed huts,
the principal article of furniture being the hammock.
Simple agriculture, hunting and fishing provided their
The natives called the island Haiti.
means of livelihood..ATheeLa lived in oommuni-
ties ruled by local oaeiqLes, and the country was divided
into five principal regions, each under a chief cacique.
Columbus happened upon this island on his first
Columbus now sailed along the north coast of the
island and entered the pretty little port known today as
Port-a'-l' Eou. Here, on December 18 ,/h solemnly took
possession of the country in the name of his sovereigns,
erecting a wooden cross on a high hill on the western side
of the bay. After-stopping in a harbor which he called
Puerto de Pau-Port of Peaoewbeoause of the harmony which
prevailed at the meetings with the natives, Columbus con-
tinued in an easterly direction, but adverse winds compelled
him to pat into the bay of-Santo Tomas, where the cordial
intercourse with the natives was renewed. Here he received
an embassy from the chief of the district, Guaoanagari,
inviting him to visit the oaoique's residence, farther along
the ooast. To aooept the invitation Columbus set sail on
the morning of December 24. In the evening after the Admiral
had retired the helmsman committed the indiscretion of con-
fiding the heljn to a ship's boy. About midnight when off
Cape Haitien, near their destination, the vessel vws caught
in & current and swept upon a sandbank where she began to
keel over, During the confusion which followed, Columbus
had the main ast chopped down but efforts to right the ship
were in vain, and Columbus and the orew were obliged to take
refuge on the little ina* g
As soon as Guaoanagari received news of the disaster
he sent large canoes filled with men to help the strangers
transport their stores to the shore. The relations' be-
tweea the Spaniards and the Indians became most cordial.
Columbus liked the natural advantage, of the location and
determined to build a fort with the wreckage of his vessel.
The fort was on a hill east of the site of the present town
of Cape,Haitien, Leaving 39 men as colonists, Columbus
set out on the Nina on January 4, 1495, on his return trip
to Spain. Continuing the journey along the coast of the
island the vessels roandeA the giant promontory of Cape Cabron
and that of Semana and entered the Bay of 8amana which
Oolmabs. at first took to be an arm of the sea. Here it
was that the first armed encounter between sons of the old
worla and t46 aew took laee.. The Indians set upon the
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SpaAiards when they landed but were quickly driven to flight,
one of their number being severely wounded. On the follow-
ing day, however, a more pleasant meeting took place and
presents were exchanged. On January 16 the two vessels set
sail for Spain.
The excitement produced in Spain by the discoveries
of Columbus made the preparation of another expedition an
easy matter, and on September 25, 1493, the admiral again set
out from Spain, this time with 16 ships and some 1300 men.
After touching at several of the Leeward Islands and Porto
Rice, the fleet sighted the Samana peninsula on November 22,
1493, and three days later arrived at Monte Cristi.
Here the finding of two corpses of Spaniards filled the
members of the expedition with grave apprehensions, which
proved justified when two days later they arrived at La
Navidad and found the fort.oompletely destroyed, the Indian
village burnt to the,ground, and the whole neighborhood
silent and desolate.
Guaoanagari was found at a village farther inland
and according to his story and that o other Indians, a number
of Spaniards had succumbed to disease, others were killed in
brawls among themselves and the remainder died at the hands
of the inland easiques and their warriors, who attacked and
destroyed both the fort and the village of Guaoanagari.
At the same time it was stated that the Spaniards had made
themselves objeetionable tc the natives by %teirAdisposition
Bt ^ idde to take no actio*, but,
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detenmined to seek another locationn' for the colony.
Sailing eastward the weather necessitated a stop
fifty miles east pf Monte Cristi. The Spaniards were
so charmed by this plaoe that it was decided to found a
town here, so the first city of the new world was laid
out and Columbus gave it the name of Isabela, thus honor-
ing his royal patron. During the-oonstruotion of this
city Columbus sent two expeditions to the Cibao mountains,
both of which succeeded in oolleoting a large amount of gold.
It soon developed that the neighborhood of
Isabela was not a healthy one. Fever invaded the colony;
Columbus himself was no exception. An uprising among the
soldiers was nipped in the bud. On recovering from his
illness Columbus resolved to make an exploration of the
interior, and they left Isabela. The beautiful Royal
Plain was soon'reached and friendly relations established
with its peaceful inhabitants, whose amazement at the
Spaniards and terror at their horses knew no bounds.
A fortress was founded on the banks of the Janioo river
and called Santo Tomas,
Oa April 24, 1494, Columbus left the island with
three vessels, for exploration to the west, entrusting
the government of the colony to his brother Diego and an
New Ir.4soenses sooan broke oat, followed by troubles
. "'.^ 1 ** i :.1 .. ** >' : .. .. I .
With the Indians.
SThe first Dominican revolution. A military
expedition dispatched to the interior committed numerous
depredations, driving the natives into the ranks of
Caonabo, who were planning the expulsion of the strangers.
The commander of the expedition was called to aooount by
Diego Columbus; but conspiring with Father Boil, the re-
ligious head of the colony, the two contrived to excite a
popular insurrection against the governor. At this time
Bartholomew Columbus, another brother of the admiral,
arrived with provisions, andaithe insurreotionists, taking
possession of the ships, returned in them to Spain where
they lost no opportunity to disparage the achievements of
Columbus and to slander him and his brothers.
The principal oaciques of the island now formed an
alliance and uniting their forces seized Santo Tomas.
Only Guamanagari refused to join them and hurried to Isabe/ia
to offer his services to the Spaniards.
At this juncture, on September 29, 1494, Columbus,
.sek and weary, returned from his voyage, during which,
after other discoveries, he had explored a portion of the
soath ooast of the island. As soon as he had recovered
sufficient strength he led an expedition into the interior,
relieved Santo Tomas, won numerous victories over the
natives and founded another fortress, La Conoepoion.
aonabob however, assembled many warriors and forced Columbus
renewed efforts. !h* Spa$iards and the Indians met
where the ruins of the old oity of Conoepoion de la Vega
now are and the famous battle of the Royal Plain was fought
on Maroh 25, 1495. The natives are alleged by the Spanish
historians to have numbered 100,000, while the Spaniards
had but 200 men and 20 horses, besides the warriors of
Guaoanagari. In this bloody battle the Indians were com-
pletely beaten, their defeat being due principally to the
superior arms of the Europeans and the fear inspired by the
horses and by twenty bloodounds brought into the battle
by the Spaniards%
This one rushing defeat definitely broke the Indians'
power. Therewere subsequent outbreaks but they were, with
one exoeption,of comparatively little importance. Caonabo
still remained at large and the Spaniards secured possession
of his person' by one of those feats of individual prowess
which mark the history of the conquest. The Spaniard,
Alonso db Ojedawent out in search of the eaoique, and having
found him with his warriors, suggested that they repair to
Isabella together to arrange terms of peace with Columbus.
The suggestion being aooepted they set out and on crossing
the Yaque river0,0eda pressed the Indian to put on a pair of
handcuffs, asserting "that these bracelets are a distinction
of the king of Castile* Caonabo aooeded, whereupon the
SpaAiard sprang apon his horse and swinging the ohief upon
the eroup, fled from the midst of the astonished warriors and
bore him.a prisoner to Ilaballa. Caonabo was later embarked
Tor Spain but died on the voyage._
Ip .. \ ** : S >..
A beginning was now made of the oppression which
Was ultimately to cause the disappearance of the natives.
A quarterly tribute was imposed on every Indian above the
age of fourteen. Those who lived in the region where gold
oould be obtained were obliged to deliver as much gold dust
as could be held in a small bell, while others were to give
twenty-five pounds of cotton. Many natives fled to the
mountains to escape paying these taxes and new settlements
were established by the Spaniards.
In the interim the enemies of Columbus had been suf-
ficiently successful in Spain to cause one de Aguado to be
sent out to make an investigation of conditions in the
colony.. His conduct from the very first was so arrogant
that Columbus decided to return at once to justify himself
before the court. On March 10, 1496, the admiral embarked
for Spain, leaving his brother Bartholomew as governor of
Before his departure news arrived of the discovery
of several rich gold mines in the southern part of the
Arriving in Spain, Columbus wrote his brother to
found a town on the south coast at the mouth of the Ozama.
Bartholomew Columbus immediately set out to select a site
and on August 4, 1496, laid the first stone of the new city
on the left bank of the Ozama, calling it Nueva Isabela,
the name afterwards changed to Santo Domingo. The new city
healthier than that of the fever-ridden Isabela on the
north coast so the settlers moved to the new town which
flourished while the other one decayed.
Bartholomew Columbus busied himself with further
explorations of the interior, founding a number of strong-
holds, among them Santiago de los Caballeros. While at
Conoepcion-de la Vega he was informed that several Indians
had burned an altar erected by friars in the interior and
had buried the sacred images. The bigoted governor had the
Indians apprehended and burned alive in the public square.
This cruel act induced fourteen oaciques to conspire for
an uprising; but their designs were betrayed and they were
captured by a bold stroke and two of them executed.
Determined to crush the spirit of the natives, Bartholomew
Columbus invaded and devastated the district of Monte Cristi,
driving the Indians into the remote forests and capturing
and imprisoning their chiefs.
His severity was not confined to the Indians, but
the Spaniards, naturally restless under the government of
a Genovese, were also made to feel it until their dislike
developed into.open rebellion.
At the head of the conspiracy was Francisco Roldan,
the judge of the colony, a man seditious by nature, and
ambitious, but who owed Columbus many favors. Others, dis-
gusted because their dreams of gold had not been realized,
followed him aed the insurrection was soon well under way.
The rebels took Isabela and sacked the government storehouse
and then took steps to besiege Bartholomew Columbus at
Coneepoion de la Vega. The arrival of fresh troops and
supplies from Spain enabled the governor to hold the rebels
'Suoh was the state of affairs when Columbus re turned
to the island on August 30, 1498. Realizing Roldan's
strength, he consented to make terms under which the insur-
gents were to receive stores and other property and return -
to Spain. By the time their vessels were ready many of
them had changed their mind and declined to go, but wrote
letters to Spain complaining bitterly of the admiral and
his brothers, accusing them of oppression and despotism.
Columbas found hims.ef obliged to agree to the most humili-
ating terms with the rebels, inolading a complete pardon,
and the distribution of lands and Indians among them.
Nevertheless, other quarrels followed, Columbus was forced
to'take severe measures and the complaints against him grew.
Stories of the arrogance and oppression with'
reference to the Columbus brothers circulated, undermining.
the esteae in which they were held by the soverigns, who
were also disappointed at not seeing the fabulous wealth
they had been expecting from the new discoveries. They
determined to'send to the island of Espanola a person
authorize to investigate conditions and decide all disputes.
Their shotee ~or the mission was unfortunate. Franeiseo
A.4;R-, a" Spiteful, arrogant and ta.tl.ess man, ws,,o,.
:-H .,,^.4A &A-* .:. .
On arriving in Santo Domingo on August 23, 1500, he imme-
diately began to annul dispositions made by Columbus and
sent for the admiral, who vas in the interior. As soon as
Columbus appeared, Bobadilla, far exceeding his authority,
caused him to be put in chains and confined in a cell of the
fortress of Santo Domingo. He also imprisoned the brothers
of polumbus and sent them to Spain together with the 'iscoverer,
all chained like infamous criminals. He made a report, at
the same time, attributing malfeasance, injustice and fraud
The administration of Bobadilla was disastrous. In
his efforts to ingratiate himself with the enemies of Columbus
he heaped favors on Rbldan and his followers and gave them
franchises and lands. He made the slavery of the Indians
more galling than ever. Columbus' property and papers were
confiscated and Columbus' friend, the explorer Rodrigo de
Bastidas, was imprisoned and his property seized.
The captain of the vessel bearing Columbus treated
his distinguished prisoner with all possible deference, and
offered to remove the chains, but the Disooverer, whose heart
was breaking under the indignities heaped upon him and the
innstice of whloh he was the victim, proudly refused.
When the vessel, arrived in Spain the sovereigns, shocked at
Bobadilla's proceedings, commanded the immediate release of
Columbus, ordered that his property be restored and over-
wholmed hin with distinctions, though providing that his
dignities as viceroy were to remain temporarily suspended;
probably because the oaloulating spirit of King Ferdinand
believed that too much power had been vested in his subject.
Bobadilla was removed from office and Nicolas de Ovando was
Ovando arrived in Santo Domingo on April 15, 1502, with
a fleet of thirty vessels, carrying supplies of every kind
and over 1500 persons, among them many who later attained
distinction in conquests on the mainland. He was courteous
to Bobadilla, but took steps to send Roldan and the most
turbulent of his companions back to Spain on the return of
his fleet, the largest vessel of which was placed at the
disposition of Babadilla.
Just before the sailing of the fleet, on June 30, 1502,
Columbus unexpectedly appeared before the city on his fourth
voyage and asked permission to enter the port for protection
from a hurricane which he believed was approaching. Ovando,
either because he had secret orders, or perhaps because he
feared the presence of Columbus might occasion renewed dis-
turbanoes, denied the request, and the great man, deeply
wooded by. the refusal, sought, shelter further up the coast.
The pilots of the great fleet derided Columbus' prediction
of a hurricane and the ships set sail. They had not reached
the easternmost point of the island when a terrific hurricane
broke loose in all of its fury. All but two of the vessels
werelost, and by a strange coincidence one of these two
bore Rodrigo de Bastidas, the friend of Columbus, whilelith
jj dolSS i *** 1
other, the smallest and weakest vessel of the fleet, was the
one that carried Columbus' property. Bobadilla, Roldan and
other enemies of the admiral, and many other passengers and
Indian captives perished and large stores of gold were lost.
Columbus' squadron rode out the storm in safety in a oove of
the bay of Azua, whereupon he continued his voyage.
On land, too, the hurricane wrought great destruction.
The houses of the town of Santo Domingo were demolished and
as the right bank of the Osama was higher and seemed more
suitable, Ovando ordered that the town be rebuilt on that side,
where it now stands.
Orando now inaugurated a period of general prosperity.
He established peaoe and order, issued rules for the different
branches of the public service, placed honest men in the posts
of responsibility and encouraged industry and agriculture.
His treatment of the Indians was most oppressive. To eaoh
Spanish landholder was assigned a number of Indians Under the
pretext that they were to be given religious instruction
and work to do; but soe extremely laborious was the work they
were assigned that they sueaumbed to disease'by the thousands,
while thousands of others perished by their own hand in an
epidemie of suioide ihich swept through the country, and many
fled to almost inaooessible mountain regions.
But two Indian chieftains still reigned in the island,
one the Indiaun ueea Anaeaona in the district of Jaragua, the
other the ehief of Hieguy Ovandoes severe actions against
.*oo Madve hiu ready .te believe the tales eOtfip iraie
..... . .
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brought to him. He, therefore, sent a troop of 300 infantry
under Diego Velazquez, the future conquerer of Cuba, and 70
horsemen, to the territory of Anacaona, where they were re-
ceived with every mark of kindness. The Spaniards invited the
natives to witness a military drill and when the queen, her
principal caciques, and a great crowd of Indians were assembled,
the exercises dommenced. The Indians were awed by the spectacle
so new and imposing to them, when suddenly the trumpets gave
a signal, the infantry opened fire and the cavalry charged on
the defenseless spectators. All the Indians who could not
escape by flight were massacred without respect to age or sex.
Anaoaona alone was spared and carried off to Santo Domingo
where she was shortly afterwards ignominiously executed, on the
pretext that she was not sufficiently sincere in the Catholic
religion which she had recently professed. A persecution of
the Indians who would not become slaves was instituted.
A few wer6 able to save themselves by hiding in the mountains
of the interior.
In 1503, the subjugation of the last remaining inte-
pendent chieftain, Gotubanama, lord of Higuey, in the extreme
eastern part of the' island, as undertaken. Near this province
a Spaniard wantonly set his hound upon one of the principal
natives and the Indian was torn to pieces, whereupon the chief,
in his indignation, caused a boatload of Spaniards to be
killed, thus giving Ovando a welcome excuse for the invasion.
Four hundred Spaniards dealt death and desolation throughout
the qePiu, pursuing the Indian .into the mountains and
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forests and sparing neither women nor children. When, at
last, thqe captured and hung an aged Indian woman, revered
as a prophetess, th6 terrified aborigines sued for peace
and agreed to pay a heavy tribute. A fortress was erected
at Higuey, but the conduot of the Spanish garrison was so
outrageous that the Indians in desperation again rose and
killed every Spaniard in the district. Ovando then began
a war of extermination and the Indians were killed off by
the thousands. Cotubanama resisted heroically but in vain,
and after being beaten in a number of desperate battles he
withdrew to the island of Saona, southeast of Santo Domingo.
Here he was surprised and captured by the Spaniards, his re-
maining warriors mercilessly shot and he himself taken to
the city of Santo Domingo and hung. With his death the island -
was pacified, though at a bloody cost, and the conquest ended.
,On August 15, 1504, Columbus onee more arrived in Santo
Domingo. On his ill-fated fourth voyage he had been ship-
wroeked in Jamaioa,and one of his men crossed the ocean in an
open boat tol" olioit aid of Ovando. The latter, after dallying
for months, finally yielded to the murmurings of the colony
and. sent for the isooverer. He received Columbus well, but
subjected him to humiliation by liberating a mutineer imprisoned
by the admiral. Disappointed and sad the great navigator
left the shores of the island he loved and returned to Spain
where, two years later, he died.
Ovando built up the city of Santo Doming6, constructed
forts and other defenses, and laid the foundations of most
of its public buildings. Fine private residences and great
churches and convents were erected. Sugar-cane was in-
troduced in 1506 and gave rich returns, the production of
the gold mines continued to increase, and cattle raising
brought large profits.
After the death of Christopher Columbus his son Diego
made fruitless efforts to recover the honors of which his
father had been despoiled, but it was not until he married
Maria de Toledo, the niece of the Duke of Alba, that he met
with partial success. In 1509 he was appointed governor
of Santo Domingo to succeed Ovando.
Diego Columbus inaugurated his administration with
a splendor til. then unknown in the new world. He built the
castle of which the ruins are still to be seen near the
San Diego gate in the city of Santo Domingo, and which in its
glory must have bee and imposing structure. Unfortunately
many persons transferred to the son the hatred they had borne
the father and he found his plans balked. He wished to re-
lease Indians from slavery and incurred the hostility of the
planters and when he desisted owing to their opposition he
was attacked by the friars. Complaints poured in upon King
Ferdinand, who instituted the audienoia or high court of
Justice of Santo Domingo, authorized to hear appeals even
from the decision of the governor.
Diego Columbus returned to Spain in 1515 in order
to defend his interests. During the term of the two gover-
nors who succeeded him, various dispositions were made for
the protection of the natives. The only result of these
orders was a change of masters; for when Diego'Columbus re-
turned as governor in 1520, he found the Indians exploited
by the priests, while the mine owners and planters now
employed negro slaves.
Almost simultaneously with the return of the second
admiral', as Diego Columbus was called, began the insurrection
ofea young Indian oaoique known as Enrique. His wife had
been offended by the-Spaniard to whom they were assigned,
and he retired to the almost inaccessible mountains in the
center of the island, and many of the remaining natives fled
to join him. Efforts to dislodge him were in vain, As a
result an insurrection, the first negro uprising in the new
world, began near Santo Domingo City on December 27, 1522.
Several Spaniards were murdered, but the troops overpowered the
mutineers and a number of them were hung.
Diego Columbus continued in hs efforts to promote the
welfare of the colony, but became involved in a quarrel with
the royal audienoia and found himself obliged in March, 1524,
to return to Spain, where he died two years later. The new
governor, Bishop Sebastian Ramirez de Fueileal, was appointed
president of the royal oourt and the offices of governor and
president of the royal court were consolidated. Both he and
his sueeessor used their efforts to promote immigration.
AA armW was &ismnatheA against the insurgent chief Eawique
who still menaced the tranquility of the colonists from his
mountain fastnesses. When it was found impossible to reaoh
him peaceful methods were employed. Negotiations were opened)
and a treaty of peace signed in 1533. By this treaty the
Indians, now reduced to not more than 4,000 in number, were
freed from slavery and assigned lands in Boya, in the mountains
to the.northeast of Santo Domingo City. From this time for-
ward there is no further mention of the Indians in the history
of the island.
f04SPtea RiNa5toA'7 Colonial Vicissitudes 1535 to 1801
Within forty years after its discovery,Santo Domingo
had passed the height of its,fame. The wealthy countries
discovered and conquered on the mainland of America absorbed
the attention of colonists and of the government, and Santo
Domingo, sank to t position of insignificance. So little
importance was attached to the island by chroniclers during
the oe uia g two hundred and fifty years and so few are the
recor-s remaining that not even the names of all of the
governors and the periods of their rule can be determined.
The colony existed. Every effort vas made to prevent decay.
There were occasional attacks by pirates or other foes.
.LouiS Columbus, the grandson of the risooverer,
and one of the most influential'men,of the colony, fitted
oat an expedition against Veragua. African slaves continued
to be imported to take the place of the exterminated Indians,
but as their importation was expensive the mines were
abandoned and the number of sugar estates declined.
tI, 164 the cities of Santiago de los Caballeros
and (Zoeepoion de la Vega were completely destroyed by an
earthquake, and the few remaining inhabitants re-established
the towns at short distances from the original sites.
Revenues sank so low that the salaries of state officials
were paid and continued to be paid for over two hundred years,
free the treasau y of Miexie.
The year 1586 was marked by the capture of Santo Domingo
City by the English navigator, Sir Franois Drake, during the
celebrated cruise on which he took the strongest towns on the
Spanish main. On the morning of January 11, 1586, the inhabi-
tants of Santo Domingo City were thrown into consternation
at seeing eighteen foreign vessels in a line which stretched
from Torreeilla Point to the slaughterhouse. The people re-
joioed when the fleet set sail for the west, but their joy
was of short duration, for the next morning messengers arrived
With the news that the enemy landed at the mouth of the Jaina
River and was marching on the city. Preparations were made
for defense, but the terrified people #ere fleeing on foot,
in arts and in oanoes, leaving their belongings behind.
Some one hundred and fifty men remained to dispute the passage
of Lieutenant-General Carliell who appeared at the head of
one thousand men. They were quickly routed by the invaders
who entered the gates with little loss and proceeded to the
plaza where they, encamped. For twenty-five days Drake held
the deserted city, carrying on negotiations meanwhile for its
ransem. When these flagged he ordered the gradual destruction
of the towa and every morning for eleven days a number of
buildingss were burned and demolished. Not quite one-third of
the eity was so destroyed.when the residents paid a'ransom of
25,000 dueats, about $30,000, for the remainder. Drake
thereupAn embarked carrying with him whatever of value he had
fouM Qin the obhurhes and private houses. He also ordered
L i&**gq ,s@ reyta1 friars, held by him as prisons, 1
LIt~i^~y ^- Joij""l .*.
retaliation for the murder of a negro boy whom he had
sent with a flag of truce.
Seventy years later Santo Domingo was again
attacked by English forces, this time with the object of
making a permanent landing. Oliver Cromwell after deolar-
ing war against Spain sent a fleet to the West Indies
under the command of Admiral William Penn, having on board
an army of 9000 men. The fleet appeared off Santo Domingo
City on May 14, 1655 and a landing was effected in two
bodies, the advance guard under Colonel Buller going ashore.
Bualler met with strong resistance at Fort San Geronimo
and se forced to retire. The united Eglish forces made
several attempts to march on the capital, but fell into
ambusoades ana sustained heavy losses. The fleet and army
left the island on Jane 5 and proceeded to Jamaica, which
The restrictive trade regulations imposed by the
Spanish government, limiting trade with the new world to
the single port or Seville in Spain, made development of
the islandVe oeameroe impo-oible. The trade restrictions
encouraged a contraband traffic with Dutch vessels on
the north coast, to stop which the Spanish government
adopted the expedient of shutting up every port except
Santo Domingo City and ordering the destruction of the
north coast towns. Puerto Plata, Monte Cristi and two
villages on the coast of what is now Haiti were thus
S "-- .. .. ..V -. ,
destroyed in 1606; the inhabitants being transferred to
towns in the center of the island, being far removed from
the temptation to smuggle. The coast as now transformed
into a desert.
The English, French and Dutch, in resisting Spain's
claim to sole trading rights in the new world, authorized
the fitting out of privateers that often degenerated into
pirates. The depot of the corsairs on the island of St.
Christopher having been destroyed by the Spaniards in 1630,
a number of refugees sought shelter on the island of Tortuga.
Some of them cultivated the soil, others indulged in piracy.
In 1638 the Spanish governor of Santo Domingo descended
upon the island and destroyed the settlement, but most of
the buccaneers were absent at the time and the only result
of the raid was to cause them to organize under the captaincy
of an Inglishman named Willis. French national pride
asserted itself, however, and with the assistance of a Frenoh
force from St. Christopher, the English inhabitants of
Tortuga, who were in the minority, were persuaded to leave
for jaasea, and Tortuga thenceforth continued under French
In 1648 the Spaniards of Santo Domingo made another
fruitless attempt to expel the buccaneers; but in 1655 the
Spanish governor, the Count of Penalva, oolleoted a force
strong enough to overawe the inhabitants, 'vho were permitted
to leave, though aband6ning all their possessions. The
Spnards4 left a garrison but the-Frenohmen returned and
drove it out. In 1664 the Frenoh West India Company took
possession, established a garrison, and appointed as governor,
D'Ogeron, under whom the country advanced. With the idea of
encouraging permanent settlement, D'Ogeron had women brought
over from the slums of Paris and portioned out as wives to
the colonists. Population increased and settlements were
made on the Haitian mainland, and the city of Port-de-Paix
was founded on a bay opposite Tortuga. The city flourished
and the settlers of Tortuga left the smaller island and
settled along the Haitian coast. Within twenty years Tortuga
was practically deserted and it so continues to this day.
A better class of people now arrived from France.
French settlements spread down the western coast. Slaves
were imported from Africa, and in 1678 a rising took place
among them, which was easily put down. In 1684 the French
government sent out commissioners to provide for the regular
government of the colony.
The Spanish inhabitants of Santo Domingo made attack
after atteak on the French but the Spanish colony was in such
redaiue straits that extended efforts were impossible.
Where. the French werw repulsed the Spaniards were unable to
hold the territory and it was soon re-oooupied. Angered
at the repeated aggressions, D'Ogeron sent out an expedition
under Delisle which landed at Puerto Plata and marched inland
to Santiago. The inhabitants fled to La Vega and only avoided
the burning of their oity by paying a ransom of 25'000 pesos,
D'Ogeron now proposed to the French government the conquest of
the entire island for Franoe, and doubtless would have exerted
every intfence to carry out this plan, had not his death occurred
Cordial relations existed between France and Spain in
1685, and boundary agreements were made between the respective
authorities, bat eventually eash side accused the other of
violations and strife continued as previously. When in 1689
war broke oat between Spain and Francethe French governor a
expedition to invade the Spanish section. He reached Santiago
where some of his men died after consuming meat and wine found
in *te deserted house. Believing them poisoned, he ordered
the torch to be applied to the city and retired after seeing
it reduced to ashes. Admiral Perez Caro, the Spanish governor,
made preparations foi a tel;lng blow on the French.. The colony's
militia and regular troops sent by the viceroy of Mexico invaded
the French section and on January 21, 1692, administered a crush-
ing defeat on the opposing force in the plain of La Limonade,
killing the 3penoh governor and his principal officers. The
victorious arm marched through the French settlements, desolating
the fields ahd patting all prisoners to the sword. The new
settlement the Freneh had made at Samana was exterminated.
The new French governor found the affairs of his colony
ia bad bca itioa; bat with the assistance of refugees from other
islands he sedt an expedition to Jamaioa, from where over 3,000
slaves together with stores of indigo and other property were
,arria elff4# Ia retaliation the Bnglish,and Spani.h fleet
l i-M.-- ,, ... ..^ .... ......' .. ..,, .,Ij
oombined and with 4,000 men aboard set sail from Manzanillo Bay
in 1695, and sacked and burned Cape Franoais and Port-de-Paix,
the English carrying off all the men they took prisoners and
the Spaniards the women and children. Hostilities were ended
in 1697 by the peace of Byswiek by whioh Spain recovered territory
conquered from her by the French and oeded the western part of
the island of Santo Domingo to France.
The French colony immediately entered upon an ere of
prosperity. Plantations of tobaooo, coffee, sugar, indigo and
oacao were established. The wealth of the planters became
proverbial. This prosperity, however, was built up on the false
foundation of slavery. *In 1754 the population consisted of
-14,000 whites, 4,000 free malattoes and 172,000 negroes.
The Spanish colony, on the contrary, sank lower.
Practially abandoned by the mother country, there was no
commeroee,very little agricultural activity, the inhabitants
devoting themselves almost entirely to cattle raising.
Th 1pts were the haunts of pirates and a number of Dominicans
also became eorsairs. By .the end of 1730 the entire country
held bat 6,000 inhabitants. Such was the poverty prevailing
that a majority of the people went in rags; and the arrival of
the ship frma Kexice, which brought the salaries of the civil
officials and the military, was hailed with the joyful ringing
of church bells.
When in 1740 sAveral ports were opened to foreign
commerce there wts an immediate change for the better.
The populati~e in l 85W ha advanced to 152,640. Of these
only 50,000 were slaves, owing to the Spanish laws whibh made
it easy for a slave to purchase his freedom.
In 1761 the colony was visited by a severe hurricane,
and by a destructive earthquake whibh overthrew the cities of
Azsa and Seibo. They were re-established on thetr present
sites. Another earthquake in 1770 destroyed several towns in
the Freneh part of the island.
Fr4 the beginning of the century the boundary between
the Frenah and Spanish colonies of Santo Domingo had been a
source of constant friction. An agreement had been made in
1780 but in 1776 a permanent treaty was drafted. It was
ratifit at i1 ranJuex in 1777 and the boundary was marked with
When the French revolution broke out in 1789 both the
Spanish and Treneh colonies of Santo Domingo were enjoying
prosperity*. -a the french colopy there were about 30,000
B A t white planters indulged themselves in every
form eo lIazry. The negro slaves, almost half a million, were
subjeeteate blrbares ill-treatment; and a class of about
30,00 0.fneei.attes had arisen, many of whom were wealthy,
but h wero eaeluded from participation in public affairs.
Just a spark *s needed to ignite a general conflagration.
The spark asse.in the formation of the National Assembly in
France and-ts declaration of the rights ofman. The
mulattees petit'inedt the national Assembly for civil and
politi90 dl rhts whih, in 1790, were denied them but granted
,, ..". .. .,- 'd- .
thea is 1791. The whites resented the government decrees
and uprisings began. The first of these was a revolt of
the mulattoes under Oge, which was suppressed. Oge fled to
Spanish Santo Domingo, but was surrendered by the Spaniards
on condition that his life be spared, a promise that was
violated, for he was publicly broken on the wheel. Jean
Francois, another mulatto, then raised an insurrection of
the negroes in the north, marching on Cape Franoais, burning
and murdering, with the body of a white infant carried on a
spear-head at the head of his troops. His forces were de-
feated by the whites, who commenced an indiscriminate
slaughter of their victims. Thq negroes now rose in every
direction and the former "Paradise of the West Indies"
became a hall. The 'great plantation houses were burned,
the wide estates demolished, white women were ravished and
murdered and white men put to death with horrible tortures,
while the liberated slaves indulged in orgies at which the
beverage was ua mixed with human blood. It was a fearful
day, o f rOAin. ,.
Il 1278,;ranoe went to war with England and Spain.
The Sganish authorities of Santo Domingo made overtures to
negro leaders of whoa a number entered the Spanish army as
officers of high rank, among them Toussaint, an ex-slave,
Who later. assued the surname of 1'.Ouverture and who showed
remarkable military and administrative qualities. The
ireah Y:*aet 'ent'~~oemailsi to the colony, whose
MkA f ..2thl ation fanned the f sa of
civil war. The English attacked the oolony, captured Port-au-
Prince, and enlisted the aid of the revolted slaves in over-
running the surrounding country. When they besieged Port-de-
Paix the French commander sent secret emissaries to Spanish
Santo Domingo and induced Toussaint to desert from the Spanish
ranks and with his negro followers help to. drive out the
English. Killing the Spanish soldiers he found in his way,
Toussaint went to fight the English, with suoh suooess that
in 1797 he was made general-in-ohief of all the French troops.
The English, decimated by disease, were obliged to leave in
1798 and sign a treaty of peace with Toussaint by whiort the
island was recognized as an independent and neutral state
during their war with France. The operations.in Santo Domingo
are said to have cost the English $10b,000,000 in money and
In the meantime border fights were going on in Spanish
Santo Domingo between Toussaint's troops and forces collected
from the various Spanish possessions on the Caribbean Sea.
They' co4ntueA uAil 1795, ihien by the treaty Of Basle peace
was declared between Franee and Spain and the Spanish colony
of Santo.e Dming was ceeed to France, the whole island thus
passing an&er French control. Toward the end of that year
part of the Spanish troops embarked and an emigration of the
better families began, many taking their slaves with them.
The Spaniards also exhumed what they supposed to be the remains
of Christopher Columbus in the cathedral of Santo Domingo and
Sll aaalr of ea the te61e of the treaty Was
that the colony should be delivered when French troops were
sent to occupy it, but as the French were kept busy in the
western portion, the Spanish government continued to administer
the country for several years. Eventually the troops and
civil officials were withdrawn,and in 1799 the royal audiencia.
or high court was transferred to Puerto Prinoipe, in Cuba,
most of the lawyers of the colony leaving at the same time
with their families.
Toussaint l'Ouverture was now in supreme command in
the west, though nominally holding under the French republic.
He displayed eonsiderabl6 ability in promoting peace, ordered
the blacks to return to work, and gave protection to the whites.
It .as evident that he aimed to make himself absolute master
of the whole island. He called on the Spanish governor, General
Joaquin Garoia, to surrender the Spanish colony in accordance
with the stipulations of the treaty of Basle. Governor Gareia
prepared to resist, but Toussaint invaded the colony with an
army, was successful in a skirmish on the Nisao River and ap-
pearing before the capital protested that he came as a French
genera in the nam6 of the French republic. Garoia had no
.alternative bat to comply with the negro chief's demands.
On the 27th of January, 1801, Toussaint 1'0uverture entered
the capital with his troops and took possession. Amid the
booming of cannon the Spanish ensign was lowered and the
French tricolor raised; and Toussaint invited the authorities
to the cathedral wheri a e ..Seu was chanted. Governor Garoia
oivil and military authorities.
..I, ., i -' .: .. *.,, ,, *
Epodhi l1 Mes to ry.. Changes of Government 1801 1844
A general exodus of white families, fearful of negro rule,
followed Toussaint l'Ouverture's occupation of Santo Domingo.
The whites had been emigrating since the first uprisings; a
number had fled into the Spanish colony and these now also left.
It is estimated that in the decade beginning with 1795 the Spanish
portion lost over 40,000 inhabitants, more than one-third of its
population. Most of the persons who abandoned the island
settled in Cuba, Porto Rioo'and Venezuela. Some of the prominent
families of Cuba today are descendants of families which left
Santo Domingo at this time.
ouassaint tried to stop the emigration by issuing con-
oiliatory proclamations; but when he found his efforts in vain,
Se conceived the idea of a general massacre of the whites re-
maining in the capital. He ordered the entire population, without
Legard for age or sex to gather on the plazar-the men, women and
children, to be separated in different groupserthe plaza being
urroundea by strong forces of cavalry. Appearing before the
peoplee Touasaint declared slavery abolished and began to walk up
nd down asking the women if they were French or Spanish, touch-
sng them with his cane in an insolent manner. It was too much
ror one high-spirited young woman, who proceeded to upbraid him
ror daring to touch her. At this critical moment a severe
Otorm, iieh' had been gathering since he appeared on the plazB,
;WY. i, it.
ri *I? .. .. .
as a sign of disapproval, ordered the children removed,
then permitted the women to leave and finally sent the
soldiers to their barracks, leaving the men to disperse.
Toussaint divided the Spanish portion of the island
into two departments,, making his brother Paul l'Ouverture
governor of the south with headquarters at Santo Domingo
and General Olervaux governor of the Cibao. with headquarters
at Santiago. In July 1801 Toussaint promulgated a oon-
Frenoh section of the
stitution for thepisland by which he was declared governor
for life and oommander-in-ohief, with an annual salary of
300,00 franos, and at the same time he oonfisoated the
property of persons who had emigrated.
Toussaint's constitution was a challenge to Napoleon
Bonaparte, who having temporarily made peace with England,
determined to/establish French authority in the island.
He aoeordingly dispatched to Santo Domingo a fleet with a
well-eqxipped army of 25,000 men under his brother-in-law
General Le Clero. Arriving in Samana Bay the force was
divided into several bodies which were to operate in differ-
ent parts of the island. The reoonquest of the Spanish
part was confided to Generals Kerverseau and Ferrand.
General Ferrand landed in Monte Cristi and without
difficulty took possession of the Cibao while.the colored
chief, Olervaux, knowing the hostility of the population
toward, hia, retired without giving battle. The negro
governor Paul l'0uverture prepared' to resist, but a brave
Dominioan, Colonel Juan Baron, organized an insurrectionary
force and placed himself in communication with Kerverseau.
The first attempt at uprising was a failure, as his plans
were betrayed, and a rough sea prevented the French from
landing. His enemies took the opportunity to sack the town
of San Carlos, outside the city gates, and to murder a
number of Dominicans. Baron gathered a larger force And
in unison with Kerverseau demanded the surrender of the city.
Paul l'0uverture reluctantly capitulated and the French
thus assumed command of the Spanish portion of the island,
with KerVerseau as governor. When Toussaint heard of what
had occurred he ordered the murder of a battalion of Domin-
ioan soldiers whom he had retained as hostages.
The war waged between the French and the blacks in
the old French Colony of St. Domingue was characterized by
nameless atrocities committed on both sides., The last
vestiges of,former prosperity were swept away and the
country converted into a wilderness. Toussaint was captured
through treachery and died in a .European prison, but yellow
fever invaded the French ranks and did great havoc. General
Le Olere died, and Rochambeau, his successor, was unable,
even with rsinforoements, to hold his own. England, again
at war with France, impeded further reinforcements and
actually and energetically assisted the insurgent negroes.
Death by'disease and wounds caused the French army to melt
away, and towards the end of 1803 the last remnant was
forced off the island.
On.Januar.y I, 1804,' the negro generals proclaimed
the island aq independent republic under the name of Haiti,
one of-the island's Indian names. Jean Jacques Dessalines,
a rough, illiterate negro, but possessing tremendous
energy, was made governor for life, with dictatorial powers.
One of his first acts was to order the extermination of
such whites as still remained. A year later Dessalines
assumed the title of emperor.
Ferrand, the French general in the Cibao, conceived
the project of disobeying his orders to evacuate and of
trying to hold Spanish Santo Domingo for France. Finding
that Kerverseau was ready to capitulate, he determined to
assume ommaand himself, feeling confident that the French
government would appi4ve his action. if his plans met with
success. He, therefore, marched to Santo Domingo City
and after a few days' parleying deposed Kerversea., placed
him aboard a vessel that carried him to Mayaguez, in Porto
Rico, and assumed the governorship.
Dessalines did not keep him waiting very long.
Desiring to extend his authority over the whole island,
a ad angered by the decree of Ferrand, which permitted the
enslaving of Haitians of over fourteen years found beyond
their frontier, he invaded the country with a horde of 25,000
men. -The population of the border towns fled before him
in terror, the slaves remaining with their masters rather
than join him. Victorious in an engagement on the Yaque
river, he laid siege to the capital on March 5, 1805.
S.. : .
In the meantime his lieutenant, Christophe, overran the
Oibaoj sacking the towns and committing horrors. Santiago
was captured before the inhabitants had time to flee, and
a large number were murdered by the savage invaders. The
members of the municipal council were hung, naked, on the
balcony of the city hall; the people who had sought refuge
in the main ohuroh were put to the sword and their bodies
mutilated; and the priest was burnt alive in the church.
Santo Domingo City had been placed in a state of
defense and artillery mounted on the tower of Meroedes
ohureh and the roofs of the San Francisco and Jesuit churches.
The garrison consisted of some 2,000 men, but to sustain
them and the 6,000 inhabitants of the city as well as the
refugees there were limited supplies on hand. Providen-
tially,~ a French fleet appeared. The admiral, who thought
the entire island abandoned by the French, was delighted
to find the French flag' still flying and gladly rendered
assistance. A desperate sortie was made on March 28, the
twenty-third day of the siege, with such success that Dessa-
linesr pieoiptately retired, abandoning his stores. The
main body of the Haitians retreated by way of the Cibao,
the others through the south, all devastating the country
as far as they could. Azua, San Jose de las Matas,
Monto Plata, Cotui, San Franoisoo de Maooris, La Vega,
Santiago and Mnte Gristi.were reduced to ashes. In Mooa
500 inhabitants, deoeived by the promises of Christophe,
Sretrra4 frbm their hiding places in the hills aMt assembled
I *' ""A y ^'~ ''H~ '
" -.'9 T, .r r ,y-;' .- y
for services in the parish church, where they were butchered
by the negro soldiers. In La Vega and Santiago the Haitian
troops made prisoners of numerous families aggregating 900
persons, men, women and children in La Vega, and probably
a greater number in Santiago, and forced them to accompany
the army tb northern Haiti, where they were kept in captivi-
ty, working as slaves for their captors, for four years.
*The march was full of horrors for the prisoners, who were
prohibited from wearing shoes, and they were brutally treated
by their guards.
As a civil administrator Ferrand did excellent work.
He enouaraged the resettlement of the abandoned fields,
persuaded emigrated families to return, established schools
and began jo build wate ororks for the capital, a work
which he nearly completed, but .which was abandoned by his
successor. Xapoleon on hearing of Ferrand's conduct not
only approved everything he had done but sent him the cross
of the Legion of Honor and financial assistance. Ferrand
was especially impressed with the importance of Samana Bay
and made plans for a city to be located wast of the town
of Samana, to whioh he intended to give the name of Napoleon.
The peaceful conditions were only troubled by British
vessels, attempting to establish blockades. On February 6,
1806/a British squadron of eight vessels under Sir John
Duckworth badly defeated a French squadron, also of eight
vessels, in a fight off Point Palenque, southwest of Santo
rrm I ~__~pgp7ar;~-~"
~'~':Pir.,~~rr~q-_rilc n~ :i j;r n- -rai
Although Ferrand was personally liked, discontent
began to brew. The inhabitants were loyal to Spain and
chafed under foreign rule. Many believed there was danger
of Haitian invasion as long as the French remained; certain
-tax exactions stirred up animosity; and the stories of
Spain's resistance to Napoleon's aggressions displeased the
leading men. Conspiracies ensued, instigated by a Cotui
planter named Juan Sanohez Ramirez, who had emigrated in
1803, but returned after four years of exile, and the Spanish
.flag was raised in Seibo in October 1808. Ferrand immediate-
ly set out to quell the uprising and on November 7, 1808,
met Sanohez Ramirez at Palo Hinoado, two miles west of Seibo.
He was vigorously attacked by the revolutionists, his native
troops deserted, and his other troops were out to pieces.
Seeing that all was lost and that his work had been in vain
Ferrand committed suicide,'blowing out his brains with a pistol.
SThe revolutionists received assistance from the
governor-general of Porto Rico and from their former enemy,
Charistophe,' who had made himself king of northern Haiti.
A British squadron took Samana, the only post held by the
Frenoh outside of Santo Domingo City, and raised the Spanish
flag; and Sanohes Ramirez laid siege to the capital, where
the French general Barquier had assumed command, while British
vessels blockaded it by sea. The siege lasted almost nine
months, during which time the besieged suffered greatly tor
food, being reduced to eating dogs and oats. At length
SanOhes SaplieL to the governor of JamaToa and a British foroe
iv,.* : -
under Sir Hugh Lyle Carmichael was sent to his assistance.
A general assault had been determined upon, but when the
brave defender of the city realized the hopelessness of
further resistance, he\ agreed to capitulate to the English.
On July 9, 1809, the French flag was lowered and the country
again became a dependency of Spain, and in 1814 Spain's
dominion was confirmed by the treaty of Paris.
Spain had been busy fighting the French within her
own borders, and when normal conditions were restored had
her hands full in keeping order and in trying to bring her
revolting colonies of America back to obedience. She had
little time for affairs in Santo Domingo. The colony was
left to "vegetate in poverty." This second Spanish era
was afterwards known as the period of "stupid Spain," as
the government was indifferent to the colony's affairs.
In the meantime, a number of exiled.families returned.
Sanohez :RamIrez, who had been proclaimed governor-general,
was confirmed in the office and held the same until his death
in 1811, being auooeeded by, Spanish military officers.
In 'the first years of the new Spanish colony there
were attempts at uprising on the part of a few whites, and
an attempt to incite the slaves against their masters, on the
part of a few blacks, but in both.instanbes the ringleaders
Were captured and put to death.
The great struggle for independence in South
Ameriea gai8aally. influenced the minds of the inhabitants
r '' ", .,
of Santo Domingo; Simon Bolivar's brief visit to Haiti
also had its effect, and secret separatist societies began
to be founded. In the beginning of 1821 a oonspiraoy was
discovered and numerous arrests were made. Plotting con-
tinued, nevertheless, stimulated by a lawyer, Jose Nunez de
Caoeres, who dreamed pf making the country a state of Bolivar's
Colombian Republio. On the night of November 30, 1821, the
conspiracy culminated in an uprising in the capital; most of
the troops had been won over to the cause of independence
and offered no resistance; the rest were taken by surprise;
and the revolutionists without difficulty made themselves
masters of the gateway "Puerta del Conde" sand of the other gates
and forts. The Spanish governor was placed under arrest and
put aboard a vessel sailing for Europe, and the Colombian flag
was raised. Public proclamation was made of the independent
and sovereign State of Spanish Haiti, affiliated with the
Republic of Colombia, and Jose Nunez de Caoeres assumed the
office of political governor and president of the State, while
the provincial assembly became a provisional Junta of government
The State of Spanish Haiti lasted barely nine weeks.
An emissary-sent to Colombia for assistance in maintaining in-
dependence was unsuccessful. Another emissary sent to President
Boyer of Haiti, for the negotiation of a treaty, brought back
the answer that "the whole island should constitute a single
republic under the flag of Haiti." For several years, Boyer,
a dark mu.atto; who had united Haiti under his rule, had been
endeavoriag to influence the colored people on the Spanish
side of the border, to such an extent that the activities of
'his agents repeatedly provoked protests from the Spanish
governors, and he now recognized that his opportunity had come.
He met with no resistance, as the temporary government was
unprepared, the population feared a repetition of the horrors
of 1805, and that many were in sympathy with him while others
were indifferent. On February 9, 1822, Nunes de Caoeres was
obliged-to deliver the keys to Santo Domingo City to the
invader and the whole island came under the dominion of Haiti.
The twenty-two years of Haitian rule marked a period
of social and economic retrogression for the old Spanish por-
tion of the island. Most of the'whites, especially the more
prominent families, the principal representatives of the
community's wealth and culture, abandoned the country, some
immediately upon the advent of the Haitians, others in 1824,
when a hopeless conspiracy in favor of a restoration of Spanish
rule was quenched in blood, and others in 1830, when a ohival-
rous demand of the Spanish king for a return of his'domain
was refused by Boyer. The Haitians, anxious to eliminate the
whites, enoouraged such emigration and confiscated the property
left by theL emigrants.. The policy of the Haitian government .
was to build up a strong African state in the whole island,
and in pureuanoe of this policy it emanoipated" all slaves,
colonized Haitian negroes on the Samana peninsula and in other
parts of the Spanish-speaking territory and brought in colored .,
people friR the United States. Pome of these remained in
Puerto others i. Santo Dqo ngo Sity, other on the.
,"r'' ^ y^^' ^'."-. '. J ":'" '
Samana peninsula, here their descendants still form the
bulk of the population.
In 1825 ,the Frenoh government recognized the in-
dependenot of the French part of the island, in consideration
of the payment of an indemnity, toward which the Haitians
forced the Spanish part to contribute.
The hostili#, of the Haitian authorities to the
whites and lighter colored mulatt1oea, their opposition to
the Spanish langpag and customs, and their neglect of the
country's dei elo~medf, caused much discontent, and the idea
of deparating from Haiti began to be entertained.
T' .. i r '
EKATRLNCE OF DOMINICAN REPUBLIC'S NATIONAL HERO
One man, a leader Well deserving of his place in Latin
America's Hall of Fame, was chiefly responsible for the
restoration of Santo Domingo's liberty.. This enthusiastic
young man, Juan Pablo Duarte, was a native of Santo Domingo,
(now Ciudad Traj.llo), Dominican Republie, where he was born
on' January 26, 1813. He was educated in Europe. In 1854
he returned'to Santo Domingo, and although' only twenty-one
years of age, 'was already fired with the resolution of
liberating his country from the yoke of Haiti. In 1838 he,
and eight of his friends, founded a revolutionary society
called "La Trinitaria." The members, who adopted as their-
motto "For-.Go, Liberty and the Fatherland" were sworn to
seoreoe and festered the spirit of revolution in every
possible manner. Once the movement was launched it met with
general response and within a few years practically the
entire youth of the country had been won over to the cause of
ndependence. In May 1842, an earthquake destroyed Santiago
nd La Vega, as well as Cape Haiten and some other towns
nthe western part of the island, and with lesser earthquakes
hioh followed caused a panic throughout the country, which,
n turn, made conditions more favorable for a change of
government. Se in 1843 the opportunity for which Duarte had
~ -. 'C -
been waiting presented itself when the Haitians revolted
against'their ruler, the tyrant Boyer. Under Duarte's
direction the Trinitarians lent secret aid to the Haitians
attempting to oust Boyer, aAd when the latter was finally
obliged to flee, the conspirators decided the moment had
arrived for them to act openly. Accordingly, on March 24,
1843, the revolutionists marched on the government palace
and forced the governor at Santo Domingo to enact various
Following Boyer's flight, Charles Herard was installed
Duarte now redoubled his activities for independence,
struggling against the opinion of many who thought such an
aspiration hopeless, but his plans were discovered and he and
several others, were obliged to flee in order to save their
lives* His work had been well done, however, and his
followers carried on, and on the night of February 27, 1844,
a large group of Dominipans, under Francisco del Ros.ario
Sanohez, appeared at theprinoipal gateway of Santo Domingo
City, "P.erta.del Conde," and received the surrender of the
guard, and on the following morning the Dominican flag, as
designed by Duarte, was waving over the gate.
Duarte was recalled from exile and the central council
of government appointed him its representative in the north
and ordered that General Francisco del Rosario Sanohez
supersede Santana in command of the troops in the south.
Duarte was proclaimed president of the republic by the people
of the north, but Santana's soldiers, refusing to recognize
any othbr leader, marched on its capital, which they entered
on July 12, 1844, and deposed the central council of govern-
ment, declaring Santana chief of state with dictatorial powers.
Santana organized a new central council of govern-
ment and sent emissaries to the Cibao, or northern part of
the republic, where he won over the army and the principal
leaders. Santana had control of the army and declared himself
dictator. Duarte, Sanohes, and others who had risked their
lives, gfven of their energies and ability, and spent their
personal fortunes in behalf of Dominican independence, were
arrested, imprisoned in irons in the ancient "Tower of Homage"
of Santo Domingo and exiled as traitors to their country
Duarte went to Venezuela and buried himself in a
remote interior town. Nothing was heard from him for many
years and he was generally believed to be dead. In 1864,
lering of Spain's re-annexation of his beloved country, he
returned to Santo Domingo to offer his services to the rebels
struggling to overthrow the new yoke. Jealous of his popularity,
however, the leaders only wanted to get him out of the'country,
and accordingly sent him back to Venezuela on a diplomatic
mission. Disillusioned by the ingratitude of his compatriots,
Duarte remained there, living in dire poverty until his death
Scarce eAeeal oan July 156 1876, at the oge of 6.
Epochs in History First Republic and Spanish Annex-
Following the declaration of independence a central
council of government was formed for the administration
of the country's affairs. The new Republio assumed the
name of Dominican Republic and the people were thenceforth
known as Dominicans. The first business of the council
was to prepare,for the defense of the territory against
the Haitian president Charles Herard, the successor to Boyer,
who was advancing with an army to re-establish his authority.
An encounter took place near Azua, in which the Dominican
forces, under General Pedro Santana, were victorious, but,
instead of following up his victory, he fell back on Bani
and, permitted the enemy to occupy Azua. Another Haitian
army was.advancig in the north. In the midst of his oper-
ations Herard was interrupted by the news of a revolutionary
movement against him in Haitian territory, and hastily re-.
calling his troops, retired to combat it, burning Azua and
devastating the country through which he passed*
There were many Dominicans who doubted that the
republic would be able to maintain a stable government and
resist the ineursions of the Haitians and they advocated
seeking the protection of'a foreign power. These men were
know a s eoniservativ4e, and who. mounted Sanatna among their
~ *- ,l .
number. They were opposed by an organization calling
themselves liberals, among whom were Duarte, returned from
exile, and the members of the central council of govern-
ment. A number of the conservatives went into hiding
to escape imprisonment. The central council of government
appointed Duarte its representative in the north and or-
dered that General Sanchez supersede Santana in command of
the troops in the south. Duarte was proclaimed president
of the republic by the people-of the north, but Santana's
.soldiers refusing to recognize any other leader, marched on
the capital, which they entered on July 12, 1844, and deposed
the central council of government, declaring Santana chief
of state with dictatorial powers. The unfortunate series
of revolutions which have been so harmful to the Dominican
Republic w4s inaugurated within five months after the declar-
ation of independence.
Santana organized a new central council of government,
and sent emissaries to the Oibao, or northern part of the
republic, where he won over the army and the principal leaders.,
The man who .had been the idol of the country when independ-i
enoe was achieved, who was chiefly responsible for the
liberation of the country, who had spent his energies and his
fortune ln the fight for independence, found himself
banished from it in less than six months after its independ-
enae had been proclaimed.
:, -Oastitut onal convention was called, which met
t #t 1, ftea the first constitution of the
.--llY,, .... .. -
^,^^^_~~~~~~~~~~~~ 4-t,^ ^^ ..,-^..-. ..;.,...<
United States as a model. It was promulgated on November
6, 1844. General Pedro Santana became the first consti-
tutiona. president. He was a rough, unoouth and uneducated
man, but possessed of aoute perception and great personal
bravery. He had a strong strain of negro and probably also
of Indian blood.
Conspiracies against Santana's government were imme-
diately started by the liberals, but were discovered and three
ringleaders were executed on the first anniversary of the
In the meantime a guerilla warfare was going on with
the Haitians along the border, and President Pierrot, who
had overthrown Herard, was preparing to invade the Dominican
Republic. His two armies captured several border towns.
A small Haitian fleet which set out to attack Puerto Plata
floundered on .a shoal where it was left high and dry and
captured by 4i th ominioans.
The government soon found itself in financial diffi-
oulties, as it was expensive to maintain the country in a
state of defense against the Haitians, and an issue of paper
money without sufficient guarantees made matters worse.
Revolutionary Matterings were heard, and though a number of
the leaders were shot, the public di-soontent -beoame more
apparent. Santana comprehended the situation and determined
to resign the.pr.esidenoy, whioh he did on August 4, 1848.
1-N~~~iL;~gbP; i :51
The cabinet officers temporarily carried on the government
and called an election, as a result of which General Manuel
Jimenes, who had fought the Haitians and been Secretary of War
under Santana, was declared president, entering upon office
on September 8, 1848.
In his efforts to face the economic troubles of the
government Jimenes disbanded part of the army and reduced
military expenses. This curtailment was inopportune, for
the Haitians who continued to consider Santo Domingo as Haitian
territory in revolt, were preparing for another invasion.
Soulouque, who had attained the presidency of the black re-
public, made a sudden incursion and marched victoriously as
far as Azua. The Dominican government observed a vacillating
policy whioh,provoked general distrust and protests from the
friends of Santana, whose partisans in the Congress called on
him to take command of the army. Jimenes finally consented,
and Santana, emerging from retirement, collected a few hundred
ragged troops at Sabana Buey, near Azua. Soulouque attempted
to move eastward, but was prevented by a Dominican force
under General Daverge; he then tried the pass of Las Carreras
and was met' and utterly defeated on April 21, 1849, by General
Santana. The Haitians retreated to their own territory,
burning Asua and other towns en-route.
Quarrels between President Jimenes and Congress con-
tinued meanwhile, and his opponents induced the army to declare
itself against the president and request General Santana
"not to lay down his arms until a government was established
which would respect the constitution and the laws and forever
banish discard from Dominican soil." The Congress called
the president to appear before it, and some of the officers
of his staff, hearing him harshly oriticised, drew swords and
pistols to punish the offending congressmen, and only the
energy of the speaker, Buenaventura Baez, averted a bloody
conflict. Congress adjourned to San Cristobal. The most im-
portant towns of the country rose against the administration,
and Santana laid siege to the capital. After the siege had
lasted a week, and the suburban town of San'Carlos had been
destroyed by fire, President Jimenez yielded to the arguments
of the British, French and American consuls and agreed to
resign the presidency and leave the country on a British warship.
Santana entered the city at the head of his army on May 30,
1849, and assumed the reins of government, one of his first
measures being a wholesale expulsion of Jimenez followers.
The electoral college having been o~nvened, Santiago
Espaillat was chosen president, but he declined to accept,
believing that Santana would expect to manage him. Colonel
Buenaventura Baez was then chosen and on December 24, 1849,
entered upon his first term as president of the Dominican
Baea, who was to,play a leading role in jhe history
of his country during the next thirty years, was the antithesis
of Santana in manners and education. Born in Alua in 1812,
his father had sent him to Europe to study, and he returned
one of the most polished and best educated Dominicans of his
day. Under Haitianrule he was a member of the Haitian
congress and of one of the Haitian constitutional assemblies.
Almost white himself, he distinguished himself by his bold-
ness in opposing measures restricting the rights of whites
in Haiti* After the declaration of independence of Santo
Domingoa he was a member of the first constitutional assembly
and speaker of the first congress, being elected from the
province of Azua, Until he became president he was a friend
Baea determined to take the offensive against Haiti
and a small naval campaign was undertaken in vhieh Dominican
government schooners captured Anse-a-Pitre and one or two
other villages on the southern ooast of Haiti, vhioh were
sacked and burned by the Dominioani. At the same time Baez
requested the mediation of the United States, Franoe and
England to put an end to the struggle between Haiti and the
Dominican Replubli. Souloquue, who had meanwhile proclaimed
himself BmpZror of Haiti, offered to agree to peace and
recognize Baez, but on condition that the Haitian flag be
raised in Santo Domingo and the sovereignty of Haiti be ad-
mitted. His conditions were naturally rejected by the
Dominicans, and the mediating powers informed the negro
emperor that if he persisted in his plans of invading Santo
Domingo thqrwould impose a suspension of hostilities for
ten yeagqp ; go fa eeO oontinaea to mass on the frontiers
, " ,. -. ."M, ..N, .;,.d ...i ;., i.; :,:::: .. !:;?......... .
and small bodies actually entered Dominican territory, which
were driven back. Upon the protests of the three powers
Soulouque explained the incursions as having been due to dis-
obedience to orders, and under pressure agreed to a truce
for one year, during which negotiations were to continue for
a definite treaty of peace or an armistice of ten years.
In December, 1852, the minister of foreign affairs of France
notified Haiti that the maritime nations of Europe were dis-
posed to maintain the independence of Santo Domingo.
A period of peace now began which afforded a breathing-
spell to the war-worn country. Upon the expiration of Baez'
-four year term, Santana was again elected president and entered
upon the office on February 15, 1853. It was one of the
occasions, rare in Dominican history, on which a president
served out his term and personally delivered up the office
to his successor.
The domineering spirit of Santana occasioned serious
dissensions. He quarreled with the clergy, which had been
taking an active part in politics since the declaration of
independence, forced the archbishop, under penalty of expul-
sion, to take the oath of allegiance to the constitution,
and banished several priests. For several years Santana
had been Jealous of Baez's influence and wrathful at the
independent spirit he displayed. In July, 1853, Santana
issued a proclamation in which he accused Baez of treason
and of playing into the hands of the Haitians, and ordered
his banibhment. Baez fled from the country and answered with
a fiery counter-appeal, justifying himself and accusing
Santana of despotism, whereupon the breach between the two
strong men was complete. Santana also quarreled with Con-
gress and banished or shot his principal adversaries.
In 1854 a constitutional convention assembled to draft
a constitution more to Santana's taste than the existing one.
The presidential term was extended to six years and the office
of vice-president was introduced. General Manuel de Regla
Mota being elected to this office when General Felipe Alfau
declined it. This constitution did not last six months.
Before the.end of the year Santana had it further restricted.
Under fear of foreign complications Haiti had remained
quiet for several years, but in 1855, when England and France
were engaged in the Crimean war, the emperor Soulouque made
a last determined effort to subjugate Santo Domingo. One-army
advanced by wy of the south, another through the central
valley; both, captured the border towns and drove the pominican
outposts before them; and both were defeated on the same day,
December 28, 1855,'the southern army at Cambronal, by a
Dominican foree under General Sosa, and the other on the
savanna of Santome, by a force under General Jose Maria Cahral.
Soulouque rallied his men within Haitian territory, shot a
few ofhis generals, and believing all the Dominican forces
collected in the south, marched north to invade the Cibao .
Here he was met by another band of Dominicans at Sabana Larga
and again defeated, now retreating to his dominions. This
was the S ga"itia. invasion, but Iraiti.did not formally
recognize the independence of the Dominican Republio until
The harsh measures of Santana had provoked general
dissatisfaction and the friends of Baez seized the opportu-
nity to conspire in his favor. Santana realized that the
days of his government were numbered, and resigned the
presidency,.as he had done in 1849, retiring to his farm
near Seibo. Manuel de Regla Moto, the vice president, now
on March 26, 1856, became president. Baez soon after
arrived in the country and was elected vice-president; there-
upon Regla Mota resigned as president and Baez thus moved
into the presidency in a perfectly legitimate manner.
The second administration of Baez opened with a revo-
lution against him, which was promptly put down. Baez then
had Santana arrested and exiled, feeling uncomfortable while
his former chief remained in the country. But he was not
destined to have peace. An ill-considered issue of more
paper money, when the rate of exchange with gold was already
fifty to one, created indignation in the tobaco6 region of
the Cibao and on July 7, 1857, Santiago declared itself in
revolution4 The movement spread rapidly. A provisional
government was setup in the Cibao, the forces of Baez were
repulsed; and soon the president held only Santo Domingo City
and* Samana. The revolutionists called a constitutional con-
vention which met at Moca and in February, 1858, promulgated
another omatitution, designating Santiago as the capital.
An election was held in the midst of the war and General
Jose Desiderio Valverde was declared elected president.
For months there were thus two governments in the country.
The revolutionists began the siege of Santo Domingo City
towards the end of July 1857, and later Santana arrived and
took charge of military operations. There were frequent
artillery duels, the fourteenth anniversary of Dominican
independence, Febryary 27, 1858, being celebrated by a cannon-
ade along the Ozama River lasting all day. The Baez family
suffered, two of the president's brothers being killed in the
war. Baez held out for eleven months, but after the fall of
Samana, and when Santo Domingo was reduced to starvation, he
at length yielded to the entreaties of the foreign consuls
and capitulated on June 12, 1858. As soon as he had embarked
for Curacao, General Santana marched into the city with the
It was not compatible with Santana's character to be
subordinate to anyone else, and by the end of July he had
quarreled with the government at Santiago and set up a govern-
ment of his own. The Santiago government attempted to resist
but was overcome and its members banished. Santana declared
the constitution of December, 1854, in force again and called
an election at which he was, of course, chosen president,
taking the oath of office on January 31, 1859. He thereupon
crushed a revolution in Azua, executing.the leaders.
As the large amount of paper in circulation caused difficulties,
he cooly repudiated the greater part, with the result that a
number of European countries temporarily severed diplomatic
relations because of the injury done their citizens, and
forced him to retire the paper by issuing in lieu thereof
certificates acceptable for customs dues. This trouble re-
moved, he devoted himself to securing the annexation of
Santo Domingo to Spain.
From the earliest days of the Dominican Republic the
most prominent men had believed that the happiness of the
country depended upon securing the protection of a strong
power, capable of preserving order, and the years of warfare
confirmed them in their opinion. The hope of remaining in
power was also an incentive to the party which happened to
be in control. Spain and France were preferred, for reasons
of identity or similarity of language, customs and religion.
Many also favored the United States, but while the republican
form of government and the probability of commercial ad-
vantages were attractions, the existence of slavery and of
prejudice against the colored race inspired misgivings.
As early as 1845, even before the declaration of independence,
an attempt was made to secure a French protectorate, and
during the first war with Haiti, Santana continued the negotia-
tions. In 1846 an attempt was made to obtain a Spanish
protectorate. In 1849 President Baez in his message to Con-
gress referred to the advisability of "hastening a solution
of the matter by obtaining the intervention and protection
of a strong nation which would offer the most advantageous
terms, for on this depends public prosperity." On Ootober 18,
1849, the Dominican minister of foreign affairs in a note to
the French consul, stated that "the present situation of the
country and the barbarous wars with the Haitians, obliged him
to beg, in the name of his government, that the government of
France give a definite solution to the important matter of
the protectorate; and if the decision of France should unfor-
tunately be in the negative, that it at least be not deferred
too long to prevent him from addressing himself to the special
representative of the United States, who had just arrived."
The United States was mentioned as a bogey, so it is said,
for when France declined, the Dominican government stated that
it could not consider the negative as final and appealed to
the French sentiments of humanity. In 1854 another attempt
was made to secure a Spanish protectorate. Neither France
nor Spain was anxious to annex a hornet's nest, and Spain was
fearful that any uprising against her authority would find an
echo in Cuba and Porto Rioo. In 1855 negotiations were
opened with General William L. Cazneau, special agent of
President Pierce for the lease of the Samana peninsula to the
United States and in the following year Captain (later Major-
General) George B. McClellan, of the United States Army,
made an examination of Samana Bay. Nothing came of this
examination owing to opposition by foreign powers and the
fall of the Santana government. Most annexation negotiations
were secret, as, the opponents of the party that happened to
be in power never failed to stigmatize them as treasonable.
The fear of American influence was one of the reasons
given by the Haitian emperor Soulouque for his invasion of
1855, and for an invitation issued by him in 1858 to the
Dominican people, calling upon them to return to the Haitian
flag. It had its influence on the Spanish government also,
which began to look more kindly upon annexation propositions
and agreed to furnish arms, ammunition and military instructors
to Santo Domingo. In 1860 Santana addressed himself to
the Queen of Spain, and proposed a closer union. Bases for
annexation were drawn up, founded "on the free and sponta-
neous wish of the Dominican people." Santana was careful
to win over the military chiefs to his ideas. His opponents
vainly combatted the proposition from Curacao and from Haiti,
which was now a republic again.
On March 18, 1861, the people of the capital assembled
on the main plaza pursuant to a call issued on the day before,
General Santana and the members of his government appeared
on the gallery of the palace of justice, a document was read
to the public proclaiming the re-incorporation of the country
as a part of the Spanish dominions, and thereupon the red
and gold flag of Spain was raised on the fort and on the
gate "Puerta del Conde" and saluted with 101 guns. On the
same day the Spanish flag was raised with similar ceremonies
in most of the other towns. A few days later Spanish troops
were disembarked at different points. Santana was appointed
governor and oaptain-general of the colony, with the rank of
liesatnanAt-$eral in the Spanish Orm .
h. k-. i^-faj-j*j .j ., ..7 : ^. -te. .i,^ '*. -. *. *-, ,.- '1 ...^l .~ ^ L ^ .^ s '
The Dominican conspirators in Haiti, comprising General
Sanchez and others who had distinguished themselves in se-
curing independence for their country, crossed the boundary
and endeavored to stir up an insurrection, but with such
misfortune that they were surrounded and the majority cap-
tured. Santana ordered the prisoners shot and twenty were
executed on July 4, 1861, notwithstanding the protests of
General Pelaez, the Spanish officer second in command.
The act provoked bitterness against Spain and made the men
so killed martyrs in the eyes of their countrymen. It also
marked the beginning of strained relations between Santana
and Pelaez, made worse by Santan's arrogance. The friction
resulted in Santana's resignation on January 7, 1862. He
evidently hoped the queen would ask him to reconsider and
give him carte blanche in Dominican affairs, but the resig-
nation was accepted, though sweetened by the grant to him of
the title of Marques de las Carreras and a life pension of
i,12,000 per annum. His successors in the governorship were
high officers of the Spanish army.
Discontent was not slow in spreading among the people.
Injudicious measures enacted by the Spanish authorities, the
importation of hordes of foreign officials, the overbearing
manners of several local Spanish commanders, increased in
the budget, intolerance on the part of the Spanish priests,
and the natural unrest of the Dominicans, all combined to
give rise to revolts which were put down, until, on August
16, 1865, a farmer named Cabrera with a small band of followers,
at Capotillo, near Guayubin in the Cibao, began an insurrection
which quickly became general.~ is known in Dominican history
as the War of the Restoration. The Spanish forces of the
Cibao valley were obliged to concentrate in Fort San Luis, at
Santiago de los Caballeros, where they were besieged by the
insurgents. The Dominicans also captured Puerto Plata, but the
city was retaken by Spanish troops from Cuba. Reenforcements
were sent to the besieged garrison of Santiago, and in the fight
which the Dominicans made to prevent the joining of the Spanish
forces, the city of Santiago was set on fire and reduced to
ashes. The Spaniards determined to evacuate the place, and
marched down to the coast, being constantly harassed by Domin-
ican guerillas, so that they lost over a thousand men before
reaching Puerto Plata. The Dominicans established a provision-
al government with its capital at Santiago and the country
continued to be devastated with fire and sword.
General Santana was given command of a Spanish force
to put down the insurrection in the east, but insisting on
carrying out his own plan of campaign, he disobeyed-orders
and so rudely answered the governor-general's remonstrances
that he was summarily removed from his position. In high
resentment he retired to the capital. It is believed that
the governor intended to ship him to Cuba; but on June 14,
1864, he suddenly died, after an illness of only a few hours.
Finally the Spaniards, unable to garrison the towns
they won, were reduced to the possession of Santo Domingo
City and a few other places near the seacoast, all prao-
tioally in a state of siege. Meanwhile the military oper-
ations were costing the home government large sums of money,
and it became evident that the subjugation of the country
would entail enormous expenditures. Political conditions
in Spain were not favorable to such a war of conquest, and
the Spanish government determined to withdraw from Santo
Domingo, alleging that Spain hadtaken possession only
because she believed the Dominicans were anxious for annex-
ation but that she did not wish to remain against' their will.
Possible, complications with the United States, just emerging
from the Civil War, were probably also taken into account.
On May 1, 1865, the Queen of Spain sanctioned a law of the
Spanish Cortes providing for the relinquishment of the colony/
The Spanish forces were brought together at Santo Domingo
City, and on July 11, 1865, after the guns in the fort had
been spiked and the military stores on hand had been de-
stroyed, the troops and the authorities embarked in a fleet
assembled for that purpose and the Spanish flag was lowered,
for the last time, in Santo Domingo.
:. i / ~ *
^* ^ ^ r^: *'";I .... ; ; ,..: .
Epochs in History Second Republic. Revolutions and
Dictatorships. 1863 1904
From the very beginning of the War of the Resto-
ration and for several years afterwards, the principal
Dominican military chiefs were engaged in a disgraceful
squabble for leadership. As soon as the Spanish forces
retired from Santiago the revolutionists, on September
14, 1863, proclaimed the restoration of the republic and
set up a provisional government under the presidency of
General Jose Antonio Saloedo. The other generals accused
Saloedo. of lack of energy in pushing the war and on October
10, 1864, deposed him and made General Gaspar Polanoo
president in his stead. Poor Salcedo tried to resist, but
was captured, hurried by a friend from one camp to another
to keep Him from being shot, but at last foully murdered.
Polanoo did not enjoy his triumph long. A reaction set in,
a revolution was initiated against him, his troops de-
serted, he yas captured and imprisoned, and on January
24, 1865, a superior council of government was formed by
the insurgents, presided over by General Benigno Filomeno
de Rojas. The council called a constitutional convention
which proclaimed,the constitution of Mooa of 1858 and in
March, 1865, elected General Pedro Antonio Pimentel president.
It ws he Who entered Santo Domingo City after the evaouation
.. ,... ^ , r ..... ^ ..,*,- ^.*'*,.,' ,,^ ^ ,', ^ ^ -^ -
Hardly had the evacuation taken place when Generals
Cabral and Manzueta raised an insurrection which overthrew
Pimentel's government while he was absent on the Haitian
border, and General Jose Maria Cabral, an educated mulatto,
was proclaimed Protector of the Republic. Cabral had formerly
been one of the enthusiastic followers of Baez but it soon
became evident that he was working for himself. He convoked
a constitutional assembly which was convening when General
Pedro Guillermo rose in the east and proclaimed General
Buenaventura Baez president. The movement was successful
and the Congress elected Baez to the presidency.
Since his overthrow in 1858 Baez had been in exile,
but he had accepted Spanish sovereignty and the rank of
fieldmarshal-in the Spanish army. On the outbreak of the
War of the Restoration, he sent Cabral to join the Dominican
forces as his representative. He was now living in Curacao
and a commission journeyed there to invite him back to
Santo Domingo. A new constitution was drafted and promul-
gated on November 14, 1865, and on the same day Baez entered
upon his office. Neither he nor the constitution lasted
long. The constitution being too liberal, he had it abrogated
on April 19, 1866, and Santana's constitution of December
16, 1854, was adopted instead. This action was the excuse
for an insurrection which broke out in Santiago on May 1,
1866, under the leadership of Pimentel and Cabral, and quickly
assumed such alarming proportions that Baez found it prudent
to resig before the end of the month and retire to Ourae&o.
,-- r;. l -r; ~ i-
As usual a constitutional assembly was called, and a new
constitution was promulgated on September 26, 1866. An election
was held and Cabral chosen president by a practically unanimous
vote. Nevertheless his government had scarcely a day's peace
from insurrections. It found time, however, to resume amicable
relations with Spain, to make a commercial treaty with the
United States and to found a professional institute. Other
relations with the United States were also planned; for as
Spain and France were eliminated from the annexation idea and
the United States had abolished slavery, this country was
looked upon with greater favor. An attempt was made to lease
Samana Bay to the United States'for two million dollars; but
as complete control was not offered the plan fell through.
Later a special commissioner was sent to Washington to negotiate
for the absolute lease of the Samana peninsula and Samana Bay,
which negotiations were the prelude to the later annexation
negotiations, but they were interrupted by a revolution in
favor of Baez which.broke out in Monte Cristi on October 7,
1867, and deposed Cabral on January 31, 1868. A council of
generals administered affairs until Baez took charge for the
fourth time, on May 4, 1868.
In accordance with established usage, the existing
constitution was abrogated and Baez' favorite constitution,
that of December, 1854, placed in force, but with amendments.
Baez then began to rule with a firm hand, and while occasionally
annoyed by small uprisings on the Haitian border, promoted by
r LP~ C~ij I^^ ^ l.';;At"..'-, .I '.; .. ''
Cabral, Luperon and other antagonistic spirits, managed to
sustain himself in power for almost his full term of six years.
He was able to realize what had been the dream of administrations
since the birth of the Republic, the contracting of a foreign
loan. Hartmont & Co., a firm of London bankers, agreed to
issue bonds of the Republio to the amount of 3757,700, though
at a ruinous rate, and actually paid over L38,095. However,
the dream turned out to be a nightmare, for when the govern-
ment annulled the contract on the ground of failure to comply
with conditions, the bankers continued to issue bonds and kept
the proceeds themselves; and the bonds thus fraudulently issued
constituted the nucleus of the enormous debt which later led
to American intervention.
Though Baez had, for various political reasons, protested
against Cabral's negotiations with the United States, he was
too sagacious a statesman to fail to recognize the importance
of American protection. It was now Cabral's turn to indulge
in tirades abounding in patriotic indignation, for Baez active-
ly and energetically pursued negotiations for the annexation
of the country 'to the United States. On November 29, 1869,
two treaties were signed in Santo Domingo City by representatives
of the American and Dominican governments: by one the Samana
peninsula and Samana Bay were leased to the United States for
fifty years at' an annual rental of $150,000, and by the other
the Dominican Republiowas annexed to the United States.
Baez submitted the annexation treaty to a plebiscite in
his country in February, 1870, and an overwhelming vote
was cast in its favor. While the adversaries of the treaty
did not oppose it actively in the country, it is probable
that the vote represented the true sentiment of the Domini-
can people, for aside from the evident economic advantages
of annexation, the influence of Baez was such that the
people readily accepted his advice.
Both treaties lapsed, but the annexation treaty was
renewed and President Grant in his messages to Congress
strongly urged its passage. Powerful opposition developed
in the United States Senate, led by Senator Sumner, and the
treaty failed of ratification. By a resolution of Congress,
-f '. *'' *., .-'.'.-* ,
approved January 12, 1871, the President of the United
States (raniwas authorized to send a commission of in-
quiry to Santo Domingo. President Grant appointed three
outstanding men, Benjamin F. Wade, Andrew D. White and
Samuel G. Howe, who were assisted by Frederick Douglas,
Major-General Franz Sigel and a number of scientists. The
commission proceeded to Santo Domingo, travelling across
the country in several directions and made an extensive
report, which is still an important source of information
as to the characteristics of the island. The commission's
report was transmitted to Congress, and President Grant made
another earnest plea for the annexation of Santo Domingo.
Congress took no further action, however, and the United States
deliberately rejected an opportunity to obtain control of
a most important strategical position and to secure peace
and prosperity to.the Dominican people.
It is interesting to speculate on what the future
of Santo Domingo would have been if annexation to the United
States had been accomplished. The power of the United
States would have maintained peace; beneficial laws would
have educated the people in self-government; liberal tariff
concessions would have stimulated agriculture and industry;
the influx of a good stock of immigrants would have developed
and settled the interior; honest administration would have
provided roads and schools, and soon the country would have
attained a high degree of development and prosperity.
The failure of the United States to grasp an opportunity
which would have, in all probability, been of tremendous
importance to the United States, condemned Santo Domingo
to long years of anarchy and dictatorships.
When it eventually became apparent that the proposed
annexation plans would not materialize, the Baez administra-
tion, on December 28, 1872, rented the Samana peninsula to
an American corporation, the "Samana Bay Company," for
ninety-nine years, at an annual rental of 150,000. The
Company, which anticipated founding a large city on Samana
Bay, actually paid.the sum of $147,229.91, the greater part
in gold and the remainder in arms and ammunition. This
payment, with that received on account of the Hartmond bonds,
and with the higher customs receipts due to quiet condi-
tions, afforded relief to the treasury; while peace brought
the country a prosperity further increased by the immigra-
tion of numerous Cubans driven from their homes by the ten
years' war that had its beginning in 1869.
President Baez had not lost hope in the ultimate
realization of annexation, and it was also his intention
to have himself re-elected for another six years term.
These circumstances were used against him by his enemies,
and, on November 25, 1873, a revolution broke out in Puerto
Plata which spread so rapidly that Baez was obliged to.
capitulate on December 31 of the same year. A new generation,
grown up since the independence of the country and which
had become so accustomed.to civil disorder that they regarded
it as a normal condition, now came into power, and the
matter of annexation sank into oblivion.
A period of frequent changes of the constitution
followed, with .a tiresome succession of military presidents.
General Ignacio Maria Gonzales became provisional president
in 1874, took advantage of the non-payment of an annuity
by the Samana Bay Company to rescind the contract with the
Company, called a national assembly, which formulated the
constitution of March 24, 1874, and had himself elected
president, entering upon office on April 6 of that year.
As the constitution did not suit him, he called a new national
convention and had another constitution promulgated on
Ivlaroh 9, 1875. This was going too far even for Santo Domingo,
and his enemies formed a powerful league in Santiago with
the idea of having him impeached, but the Congress rejected
the charges. Another civil war was imminent when Gonzalez
resigned'on February 23, 1876.
The council of ministers took charge of the government
and held an election at which Ulises F. Espaillat was desig-
nated president. He entered upon office on April 29, 1876,
and as he was an excellent manwould have given a good account
of himself under different conditions; but General Gonzalez
started a revolution on the Haitian frontier, and on October
5, 1876, Espaillat was ousted. A superior council of
government was formed, which appointed General Gonzalez
president in the beginning of November, 1876. Gonzalez had
been in power for just one month when he was overthrown, in
December, 1876, by a revolution that originated in the Cibao,
and General Buenaventura Baez became president for the fifth
time. The Republic thus had four presidents in the year of
1876; Gonzalez twice, Espaillat and Baez. Baez called a
constitutional convention and the constitution of May 14, 1877,
vias promulgated. Under the influence of the younger element
he was less autocratic than in his previous administrations,
but perhaps for this very reason his whole term was one
prolonged struggle with insurrections, until he was obliged
to surrender 6n February 24, 1878. He retired to Porto Rico
and died near Mayaguez in 1884.
Two governments were now established, General Ignacio
Maria Gonzalez being proclaimed president in the Cibao, and
General Cssareo Guillermo in Santo Domingo. An agreement
was reached by them on April 13, 1878, and Guillermo became
provisional president of the entire country. The constitu-
tion of 1877 was reproclaimed with amendments, an election
was held and General Gonzalez was declared constitutional
president, entering upon office on July 6, 1878. Guillermo
immediately started a revolution with General Ulises Heureaux
and compelled Gonzalez to abdicate on September 2, 1878.
This was the termination of Gonzalez' meteoric presidential
flights, but after a period of retirement he ventured into
public life again, and for many years was Dominican minister
Jaointo de Castro, the president of the supreme court,
acted as president until September 29, 1878, when he was
succeeded by the council of ministers of which Guillermo was
chief. The constitution of 1878 was promulgated, with amend-
ments, on February 11, 1879, and on February 28, Guillermo,
after going through the form.of an election, became consti-
tutional president. He did not last long. On October 6,
1879, a,revolution broke out at Puerto Plata and a provisional
government was formed under the presidency of General Gregorio
Luperon, a negro, who had been imprisoned for larceny under
Spanish rule, but had redeemed himself by signal services in
the War of the Restoration. Guillermo resisted two months,
but was compelled to surrender on December 6, 1879.
Luperon did not depart from the usual custom, but
called a constitutional assembly which, in 1880, adopted
with amendments the constitution of 1879, and fixed the
presidential term at two years. Luperon then held an elec-
tion and gave the presidency, for the two years beginning
September 1, 1880, to one of his supporters, Father Fernando
de Merino, an eloquent priest who had taken an active part
in politics since his youth, and who later became archbishop
of Santo Domingo. He suppressed all revolutionary uprisings
with uncompromising severity and did not hesitate to execute
During Merino's administration General Ulises
Heureaux served as minister of the interior and began to
wield the power which he was to retain for twenty years.
Heureaux was born in Puerto Plata about 1846. Both of his
parents were negroes. He received a mercantile education
and took part as a subordinate in the Var of the Restoration
against the Spaniards. On the withdrawal of the Spaniards,
in 1865, he became a bandit on the Haitian border and prac-
tised horse stealing on a large scale. Later he obtained a
position in the Puerto Plata custom-house and took part in
the civil disturbances of his country, until he became well
known as a politician and a revolutionist. He distinguished
himself by his bravery and was many times wounded. Throughout
these civil wars he remained a sturdy follower of General
Laperon, the successor of Santana as leader of the "Blue"
party and an implacable opponent of General Baez, the
chief of the "Reds" and of General Gonzalez, the leader
of the "Greens." When General Luperon overthrew President
Guillermo, in 1879, Heureaux was closely associated with
the revolutionary movement.
Heureaux was able to strengthen himself to such an
extent that when, in 1882, Luperon determined to become
president himself he found that his former follower had out-
grown him in power. The result was that Heureaux became
president and served from September 1, 1882, to September
1, 1884. When his term expired, Heureaux' candidate,
General Francisco Gregorio Billini was victorious.
Billini entered upon the presidency on September 1,
1884, but became dissatisfied under the demands of Heureaux,
and his friends, and resigned on May 15, 1885. The vice-
president, Alejandro Woss y Gil, succeeded to the chief
office. His term was to have expired in September of the
following year, but an insurrection broke out in July, 1886,
under General Casimiro N. de Moya, with the object of pre-
venting Heureaux from carrying out his desire of succeeding
Gil. After six months of fighting Heureaux was victorious,
and having had himself re-elected, resumed the presidency
on January 6, 1887.
The biennial elections were a source of annoyance
even to one who was sure of victory, and Heureaux therefore
called a constitutional convention which amended the con-
stitution then in force lengthening the term to four years.
As General Cesareo Guillermo, Heureaux's former companion
in arms and later opponent, was understood to be aspiring to
the presidency, Heureaux sought to apprehend him. Guillermo
fled, but finding himself pressed, committed suicide. No
further obstacle opposed Heureaux's election, and he was again
inaugurated on February 27, 1889.
In the meantime negotiations had been undertaken for
the contracting of new foreign loans, and one was floated in
1888 and another in 1892. The government's fiscal agent who
secured these loans in Europe was General Eugenio Generoso
Marchena, a splendid man of great influence. In 1892 General
Marchena announced himself as a candidate for the presidency.
Heureaux won again, bat still uneasy, he arrested Marchena
in Santo Domingo, imprisoned him for a year and sent him to
Azua to be shot.
During Heureaux's new term, beginning in 1893, the
country by improvident bond issues and debt contraction, made
rapid strides in the direction of bankruptcy. In 1893, the
San Domingo Improvement Company, an American corporation,
under contract with the government took charge of the customs
collections for the purpose of providing for the services of the
loans. The illegal imprisonment of several Frenchmen gave
rise to friction with the French government and in 1894 a
French fleet appeared before Santo Domingo City, but the
trouble was adjusted by the payment of an indemnity.
As the 1889 constitution prohibited a president from
holding office for more than two terms in succession,
Heureaux, wishing to continue in the presidency, obviated
the difficulty by the simple expedient of promulgating a
new constitution, in 1896, in which the limitation was
removed. He was declared unanimously elected in 1896 and
began his final term on February 27, 1897.
The long period of comparative peace enjoyed by
the country under the rule of President Ulises Heureaux
brought seeming prosperity, but at a staggering price.
Many of his opponents Heureaux was able to buy, and in this
way he retained their loyalty. Those whom he could not
buy he persecuted, imprisoned, exiled, or executed. He
was unrelenting in his persecution of conspirators, and
history records many stories of his cruelty. It is related
that when he was, minister of the interior under Merino he
discovered that his brother-in-law was implicated in a plot
objectionable to him; he therefore invited him to dinner
and after they had'dined, inquired how his guest had enjoyed
the meal. "Very, very much," was the answer. "I am glad
of that," said Heureaux, "for I am about to have you shot.
Take a cigar," he added pleasantly, "it will be your last."
And it was, for the execution followed at once. Op another
occasion, so history states, after he had become president,
a prominent general was his guest and after dinner they
took a stroll. Coming to a place in the suburbs where work-
men were digging a peculiar trench, the general inquired,
"What are they digging here?"- "They are digging your
grave," answered Heureaux, and before the general could
recover from his consternation a squad of soldiers appear-
ed. The general ias shot and buried then and there.
The governor of Macoris and the minister of war were both
powerful men whose influence was feared by Heureaux. He,
therefore, cunningly wrought up 'the latter against the
former to such an extent that one fine morning the minister
suddenly appeared in Macoris and had the governor summarily
shot. An outcry was made by the governor's friends, and
Heureaux, affecting indignation at the act, had the minister
of war executed. Many of his prisoners mysteriously dis-
appeared and history points out one of the lower platforms
of the fort "La Fuerza," where the prisoners were shot
at night, their bodies being thrown to the sharks at the
base of the cliff. Some of Heureaux's enemies were assassi-
nated in the public streets.
Ability and unscrupulousness, courage and cruelty,
resolution and deceitfulness were mingled in the character
of Heureaux. He exercised the powers of an absolute monarch.
He was the head of every government agency and the chief of
every department. The accounts of the government and his
private accounts were treated by him as one and the same
thing. His ambition to remain in power necessitated the-
expenditure of large sums of money which he obtained through
improvident foreign loans and usurious contracts with local
merchants. His friends became rich; his enemies he
ruined. He was notoriously immoral. An isolated town
gloried in the distinction of being the only place in
the Republic where the president did not have a mistress.
He himself stated that he had no interest in what history
would say about him, since he would not be here to read it.
During the latter part of Heureaux's administration
the leaders of the opposition were recognized as Juan
Isidro Jimenez and Horacio Vasquez.
In May, 1898, Jimenez made a bold attempt to over-
throw the Heureaux government. He fitted out a small
steamer, the "ranita," in the United States and left
ostensibly to aid the Cuban insurgents; and as the United
States was then at war with Spain the expedition was not
opposed by the American government. A landing was made
at Monte Cristi. Jimenez' followers took the town, but
the governor of the district escaped to the country and
returned with a large force, driving Jimenez back to his
vessel with a loss of half of his companions, who had
numbered twenty-five men. Jimenez was arrested by the
British authorities. Heureaux sent a man-of-war to Nassau
and did all he could to have the case pressed, but Jimenez
Though Heureaux was hated on account of his tyrannical
conduct, and his attempts to compel the circulation of a
large issue of inconvertible bank notes with which he flooded
the country, the fear in which he was held prevented any
general uprising. There were many, however, among them
Horaoio Vasquez, who continually conspired against the
dictator. When it became known that Heureaux was resolved
to bring about Vasquez' death, Ramon Caceres, a cousin of
Vasquez, was drawn into the conspiracy. The father of
Caceres, onee vice-president under Baez, had been killed,
it is stated, by order of Heureauz. In July, 1899, when
Heureaux prepared for a trip through the Cibao, he vas in-
formed of a plot to kill him on the way. When he arrived
in'Moca he thought no danger awaited him there. He antici-
pated that any attack upon him would be made at some soli-
tary place on the road and not in a town in broad daylight.
When about to leave Moca on July 26, 1899, he ordered the
governor of the province to arrest Caceres and his companions.
Caceres was informed of the order by the secretary of the
governor, who was his friend, and knowing the arrest would
be followed by an execution, Caceres and several companiQns
repaired to a store when Heureaux was talking with the pro-
prietor, the provincial treasurer. As soon as Heureaux
appeared in the doorway Caceres began to shoot, and his
companions,commenced firing, but the first shot had been fatal.
Heureaux, before falling, drevi his revolver and returned
the fire, but the shots went wild, one of them killing a
beggar to whom he had a few moments before given alms.
Caceres and his companions fled to the mountains. The body
of Heureaux was taken to Santiago, where it was afterwards
interred in the cathedral.
V.' ;1 \ [--'*"T^ ***
Juan Wenceslao Figuereo, vice-president of the Republio,
an aged negro, succeeded to the presidency.
The death of Heureaux precipitated a revolution
headed by General Horaoio Vasquez. President Figuereo
offered noresistance, and at the end of August resigned,
together with his cabinet, first designating a committee
of citizens to administer affairs until the.arrival of
Vasquez, 'who entered the capital on September 5, 1899, and
became the head of the provisional government. Jimenez
in the meantime hastened to the country and was received
joyfully. The two leaders arranged that Jimenez should
become president and Vasquez vice-president, and an election
was held on October 20, 1899, with this result, the inau-
guration taking place on November 20, 1899. Ramon Caceres,
the slayer of Heureaux, was made governor of Santiago and
delegate of the government in the Cibao.
The Jimenez administration was the opposite of that
of Heureaux. It deserved the name of civil and constitu-
tional government. The executive was not all-powerful,
as in the time of Heureaux, nor were there executions.
Perhaps too little restraint was exercised. Jimenez was
so good-hearted that at times he yielded to importunities
which were unfortunate. The financial problems left by
the Heureaux administrations caused a vast amount of trouble,
and though the waste of the public revenues was curtailed
large sums were absorbed in the payment of revolutionary
claims and of pensions for local military chiefs.
Jealousies ripened between Jimenez and Vasquez. The
latter had temporarily cast aside his ambitions to become
president on account of the overwhelming popularity of
Jimenez. Each of the chiefs collected a group of friends
about him and in this way originated the still existing
political parties, Jimenistas and Horacistas, the respective
followers of Jimenez and Horacio Vasquez. Several minor
uprisings were attempted but were suppresl:eJl by the government.
In the beginning of 1902 the Dominican Congress, composed
largely of Vasquez' friends, considered the advisability of
impeaching President Jimenez on account of the financial
transactions of the administration and a vote of censure was
finally passed. Rumors became current that Jimenez intended
to imprison his vice president and thus insure his own
re-election. Vasquez now started a revolution in the Cibao
and after a fight in San Carlos and a four days' siege of
the capital entered Santo Domingo City on May 2, 1902, and
became president of a provisional government. Jimenez sought
refuge in the French consulate and embarked for Porto Rico.
The Vasquez administration encountered as many
difficulties with financial matters as that of his predecessor,
but the president had no opportunity to show what he could do.
Outbreaks began in Monte Cristi and became general in October,
1902. Disturbances continued until March 24, 1903, when,
during the absence of President Vasquez in the Cibao, the
the political prisoners in the fort of Santo Domingo City,
through connivance with the general in charge, broke out,
took the fort,.liberated the convicts, threw the city into
a panic wfth a continued fusillade, and proclaimed a revo-
lution. In the absence of Jimenez the presidency was
offered to Figuereo and others, who declined, and was fi-
nally accepted by Alejandro Woss y Gil, who had only the
week before been liberated from the same political prison.
General Vasquez returned with an army, arriving before
Santo Domingo City at the end of March. The ensuing siege
was a long battle, during which a portion of the town of
San Carlos was destroyed by fire. On April 18, 1903, Generals
Alvarez and Cordero, the best generals of the besiegers,
made a violent attack on the city and effected an entrance,
but fighting continued in the streets and these leaders and
most of the storming party were killed. Vasquez thereupon
fled to Santiago, resigned his post, and left the country
Woss y Gil, who thus became president of the pro-
visional government, called a session of Congress and by
appointments favorable to his interests so strengthened his
position that his continuance as president became assured.
Jimenez, who arrived shortly after, claimed that he was
still president de jure, since the constitutional term of
four years for which he had been elected had not expired, and
he alleged the Vasquez government an illegal usurpation of
power. In his efforts to regain office, he sent his friend
Eugenio Desohamps to treat with Gil, but Deschamps, seeing
Gil obdurate, made an agreement by which 'oss y Gil was to
become president and Deschamps vice-president. Jimenez was
compelled to yield to the inevitable and returned to Porto
Rico. An election was held in which 'Joss y Gil and Dechamps
were the only candidates and on June 20, 1903, they were
In General Alejandro Woss y Gil the Republic had a
very talented man as president. He was for a long time
Dominican consul at New York, and from 1885 to 1887 was presi-
dent of the Republic. He vas well educated and spoke several
Unfortunately the talents of Woss y Gil did not
produce an efficient administration. His appointees were
unworthy and a carnival of fraud and dishonesty was soon in
progress. Discontent grew general, and by the end of Odtober,
1903, General Carlos F. Morales, governor of Puerto Plata,
raised the standard of revolt and his troops marched on the
capital. The siege of Santo Domingo City lasted for about
three weeks. On November 24, 1903, Woss y Gil, finding himself
vanquished, permitted Morales' troops to enter the city and
sought refuge in the British consulate. Three days later a
German man-of-war carried him to Porto Rico, and he later
continued to Cuba.
Morales, on enter ing Santo Domingo, became president
of the provisional government.
A serious unsuccessful revolution followed. The
siege of the capital continued uninterruptedly from December
to February. Finally Morales defeated the besiegers, and bin
Ilaroh the backbone of the revolution was broken. The insur-
rection had spent itself on account of lack of supplies and
efficient leaders. Jimenez, financially ruined by his attempts
to reestablish himself in power, again withdrew to Porto Rico.
An election was held, as a result of which Carlos F.
7,orales became president and Ramon Caceres vice president, and
they were inaugurated on June 19, 1904. The new president,
Morales, was an unusually clever man and had long taken an
active interest in public affairs. He had been a member of
Congress during the Jimenez administration.
Epochs in History American Influence 1904 to date.
The foreign and internal debts left by the Heureaux ad-
ministrations had been constantly increased by outrageous
loans to which the succeeding governments were compelled to
resort during the years of civil warfare, until the country
was in a condition of bankruptcy. In the beginning of 1904
every item of the debt had been in default for months.
Under pressure from foreign governments, the principal
debt items due foreign citizens had been recognized in inter-
national protocols and the income from each of the more
important custom-houses was specifically pledged for their
payment, but in no case was payment made. One of these
protocols, signed with the American charge d'affaires, liqui-
dated the government's accounts with the San Bomingo Improve-
ment Company, which had been turned out from the adminis-
tration of custom-houses by president Jimenez, and provided
for a board of arbitration to settle the manner of payment.
The arbitrators determined the instalments payable and specified
the custom-house of Puerto Plata and certain others as se-
ourity, which were to be turned over to an American agent in
case of failure to pay. No payment being made, the American
agent demanded compliance with the arbitral award and on
revolutionists could no longer count on captured custom-
houses to replenish their exchequer.
The position of President Morales was a difficult
one. He was an ex-Jimenista at the head of an Horacista
government, and there was no sympathy between him and his
council. The Horacistas distrusted him and forced him to
dismiss his friends from the cabinet and to make appointments
which were distasteful to him. Realizing that he was being
reduced to a figurehead, Morales secretly tried to form a
party for himself or make arrangements with the Jimenistas
who fo months had been conspiring and threatening to rise.
The friction became more severe until Morales, fearing that
both his life and his office were in danger, on the day before
Christmas, 1905, fled from the capital, while the Jimenistas
rose in Monte Cristi and marched down to attack Santiago
and Puerto Plata.
It was the anomalous spectacle of a president lead-
ing an insurrection against his own government. Fortune was
against the insurgents from the start. Morales, while trying
to scale a rooky wall near the Jaina River, in the neighborhood
of the capital, fell and sprained his leg, so that he was
unable to proceed farther, but was obliged to remain in hiding
in the woods, suffering much discomfiture and pain. The
insurgents attacked Puerto Plata under their best general,
Demetrio Rodriquez, a mulatto, and would probably have taken
the town, had not Rodriguez received a bullet in the temple,
whereupon his men became panic-stricken and dispersed.
Morales realized that all was lost and returned to the capi-
tal, where he went to the American legation for protection.
On the following morning, January 12, 1906, with his foot
bandaged, and tears rolling down his cheeks, he wrote out
his resignation. He vas immediately conveyed to Porto Riico
on an American cruiser. Morales established his residence
in the island of St. Thomas and later in France. He con-
tinually conspired for a return to the presidency, and was
once tried for filibustering in Porto Rico, but acquitted.
A friendly administration made him Dominican minister in Paris,
where he died in 1914.
Upon the resignation of Morales the vice-president,
General Ramon Caceres, assumed the presidency. Caceres vas
born in Moca on December 15, 1867, and was a cacao-planter.
It was he who killed Heureaux in 1899, after which he entered
public life, being governor of Santiago and delegate of the
government in the Cibao during the administrations of Jimenez
and Vasquez, an exile in Cuba during the administration of
.oss y Gil, and vice president and governmental delegate during
the administration of Morales. He had the appearance of a
country squire, was large of body and had a great big heart.
During the years 1906 and 1907 special attention was
given to the settlement of the debts of the republic. A new
bond issue of $20,000,000 was made for the purpose of converting
the old debts, and an arrangement was made with the principal
creditors, by which the amounts due were reduced by about
one-half. Instead of the still pending convention of Feb-
ruary, 1905, with the United States, a new fiscal treaty
was agreed upon, and approved by the United States Senate
and the Dominican Congress, taking effect on August 1, 1907.
In similarity with the provisions of the modus vivendi, the
customs income of. the Republic is collected by a General
Receiver of Dominican Customs, appointed by the President of
the United States, and a portion of the income is set aside
by him for the service of the loan.
For years the various governments had been planning
to revise the constitution of 1896, Vasquez even calling a
constitutional convention; but the political kaleidoscope
turned before such intentions could be realized. Conditions
becoming sufficiently stable, a new constitution was pro-
mulgated on September 9, 1907. It vias found unsatisfactory
and a constitutional convention met in Santiago and on February
22, 1908, promulgated the present constitution, by which the
presidential term was lengthened to six years and the office
of vice-president abolished. An election was held and General
I.amon Caceres was chosen president, entering upon his new term
on July 1, 1908.
As a result of the Dominican-American fiscal arrange-
ment the old debt was practically all cancelled, burdensome
concessions were redeemed, and a large portion of the surplus
from the new bond issue was set aside for public works, of
which several were undertaken.
A border clash with Haiti, vhich in January, 1911,
caused the dispatch of troops to the frontier, was settled
The anticipation of peaceful conditions gave a new
impetus to agriculture, industry and commerce, and the
exports and imports increased yearly.
At a time when the future seemed brightest, the Republic
was suddenly startled by the news of the assassination of
President Caceres on Sunday afternoon, November 19, 1911.
The president, with a single companion, was returning from
a drive along the new road to San Geronimo. At Guibia, a
suburb of the capital, a number of conspirators rushed for
the carriage, seized the reins of the horse and began to
shoot. The president's companion fled, but Caceres, a fear-
less man and an excellent shot, returned the fire. Almost
simultaneously a bullet shattered his right wrist. The
coachman lashed the horse in an attempt to escape, but the
horse reared and threw the carriage against a hedge. The
coachman then dragged Caceres from the carriage, and assisted
him to the stable of a house on the roadside, adjoining the
American legation, but the conspirators continued to fire
furiously and several shots struck the president. Seeing
their object accomplished, the assassins withdrew, and the
president, mortally wounded, was carried to the American
legation, where he died a few moments later.
The conspirators were a handful of malcontents led by
General Luis Tejera, a young man of a prominent family,
at one time governor of the capital under Caceres, but later
estranged. Caceres had known of Tejera's seditious
sentiments but refused to take them seriously. Immediately
after the shooting, the conspirators hastened away in a
waiting automobile, carrying with them their leader Tejera,
who had been wounded in the leg during the affray. At
the Jaina ferry the automobile was accidentally precipi-
tated into the river, and the wounded man was fished out
half drwoned. The other 'conspirators left him in a hut
by the road and escaped. Tejera was located by the pur-
suers, taken to the fort in Santo Domingo City, and sum-
The commandant of arms of the capital, General
Alfredo M. Victoria, \,ho controlled the military forces,
permitted his own personal ambitions to influence him
more than the welfare of his country. Being only twenty-
six years of age, he vas not of the constitutional age
to be president, but.he dominated the situation by force
of arms and brought about the selection of his uncle,
Eladio Victoria, as provisional president. The latter
was a senator from Santiago province and had, at one time,
been a member of Caceres' cabinet. He was not considered of
presidential calibre and his selection provoked general
surprise and indignation. General Victoria's army was
a potent argument; it crushed the ambition of other aspirants
to the presidency, and Senator Victoria was elected provisional
president, and entered upon office December 6, 1911. In the
following February the usual form of public election was gone
through and on February 27, 1912, he took the oath of office
as constitutional president. His nephew occupied important
cabinet positions under the new administration.
The general opposition to President Victoria an4 to
the method of electing him found expression in revolutionary
uprisings throughout the country, especially in the Cibao
and Azua. Expresident Vasquez, ex-president Morales and
several Jimenista generals took the field independently.
Morales was captured, but the others continued the fight.
Beginning early in December, 1911, the war dragged on for
months, both sides sustaining heavy losses and extensive
sections of the countrybeing devasted.
It became apparent that there was a deadlock, the
government being powerless to subdue the revolutionists,
while the revolutionists were unable to continue an active
campaign against the government. The American government
eventually extended its good offices with a view to the re-
establishment of peace and order. A special commission
appointed by the President of the United States and consist-
ing of an official of the War Department and another of the
State Department arrived in Santo Domingo in October, 1912,
and initiates a series of conferences with government and
revolutionary leaders. An agreement was concluded and, in
accordance therewith, the Dominican Congress assembled on
November 26, 1912, accepted the resignation of President
VictoriaE, and elected the archbishop of Santo Domingo, Mon-
signor Adolfo A. Nouel, as provisional president for a period
of two years. He was inducted into office on December 1, 1912.
Archbishop Nouel, a man of unusual mental attainments,
respected and admired throughout the entire country, entered
upon his duties with the announced intention of giving an
impartial administration. The difficulties of his plan
were soon impressed upon him, particularly as he relied upon
moral persuasion to carry his policies into effect. Pressure
was applied for favors which he could not grant, his appoint-
ments were bitterly criticised as savoring of nepotism, or
as favoring one side or the other, and some of the fiercer
military chiefs assumed a bitter attitude. Sick and dis-
gusted, Monsignor Nouel resigned the presidential office on
March 31, 1913, and embarked for Europe.
The Dominican Congress immediately considered the
choice of a temporary successor, and after many ballots
elected a compromise candidate, General Jose Bordas Valdez,
an Horacista senator from Monte Cristi, as provisional
president for one year. He assumed office on April 14, 1913.
His designation did not please the Jimenistas, and the
Horaoistas also became hostile when it appeared that president
Bordas contemplated forming a party of his own. His oppo-
nepts promptly rose in the Cibao and took possession of the
ports of Puerto Plata, Sanchez and Samana, vAhich were then
blockaded by the government forces. In the latter part of
September, 1913, the revolutionists laid down their arms on
the promise of the American minister that free elections
for presidential electors and members of a constitutional
convention,would be guaranteed. A municipal election was
held, but President Bordas, alleging that conditions were
too unsettled for a presidential election, held on as pres-
ident de facto beyond the term for which he had been pro-
visionally elected. On the day his term ended, April 13,
1914, another revolution broke out and rapidly spread to
all parts of the Republic. Puerto Plata was occupied by the
insurgents and blockaded for several months by government
vessels, the blockade being accompanied' by a siege of the
city under the direction of the president himself. And the
insurgents laid siege to the capital. The government con-
tracted heavy debts to carry on the war and the commerce of
the country suffered tremendously.
Again the American government lent its good offices
for the restoration of order. In August, 1914, a commission
of three delegates of the United States arrived in Santo
Domingo to present a plan for the resignation of Bordas, the
selection of a provisional president by the chiefs of the
several political parties, a revision of the election law,
and the holding of general elections. The plan was agreed to,
President Bordasr designed, and Dr. Ramon Baez, a son of former
President Buenaventura Baez, was elected by the Dominican
Congress as provisional president on August 27, 1914.
Popular elections were held in October, at which there
were four candidates; ex-president Juan Isidro Jimenez,
ex-president Horaoio Vasquez, ex-1Minister of Finance Federico
Velazquez, and a fourth of lesser consequence. The Jimenez
and Velazquez forces effected a combination, as a result of
which Juan Isidro Jimenez was elected president a second time,
and took the oat of office on December 5, 1914.
For a moment it seemed as though the country was at last
entering upon an era of peace. The government made efforts
to solve the financial problems left by the recent civil wars
and to resume public improvements. Investments of foreign
capital increased and commerce expanded.
The elements of disorganization were present, however,
as strong as ever. Corruption was general in the adminis-
tration of the public funds. Disgruntled military chiefs
found a willing worker and leader in the personage of the
minister of war, General Desiderio Arias, a chronic revolu-
tionist from Monte Cristi, who had for years used the popularity
of Jimenez as a cloak for his own aspirations. The president,
now aged and infirm, was unable to cope with the situation
energetically, and was not inclined to adopt severe measures.
In the early part of 1916 Arias had his friends in
Congress vote to impeach President Jimenez for alleged frauds.
The impeachment charge was still under discussion, and the
President ill at his home on the San Cristobal road, near,
Santo Domingo City, when in April, 1916, Geberal Arias sudden-
ly seized the military control of the capital and issued a
proclamation by which he practically deposed Jimenez and
assumed the executive power himself.
Another civil war was imminent when deliverance came
in an unexpected manner. For many years past in previous
disturbances, one or both of the warring factions had looked
to the United States government for help in restoring order,
and diplomatic assistance had ended the strife. The endless
succession of revolts, however, had exhausted the patience
of the American government. In the face of another general
war, with its attendant harm to American and other foreign
interests, and danger of international complications (a
British and a French man-of-war were already hovering off
the capital) the American government took decisive action.
With the consent of President Jimenez, it landed marines
at old San Geronimo castle, on the Guibia road, near Santo
Though Jimenez approved of this action and realized
that his country could not emerge from the revolution without
American assistance, he was depressed at the condition of
affairs, and in view of his physical feebleness felt himself
unequal to the task of guiding the country through impending
difficulties. He, therefore, on May 6, 1916, resigned the
presidency of the Republic, subsequently returning to Porto
Rico to live. The council of ministers temporarily assumed
Arias, dismayed and bewildered at the action of the
United States, made protest, but the American government
refused to admit the legality or sincerity of his conduct.
Its troops advanced on Santo Domingo City and Rear-Admiral
Caperton, the American commander, gave Arias twenty-four
hours to evacuate. He promptly obeyed, and on May 15, 1916,
the Americans occupied the city.
American troops continued to be landed, at Puerto
Plata on June 5; at Monte Cristi on June 19; and at other
seaports as necessity demanded, until a total of about 1800
marines had been disembarked. They proceeded into the
interior, taking over the preservation of public order and
disarming the inhabitants. They advanced on foot, in impro-
vised motor trucks, and as real "horse marines," in accord-
anoe with a plan to secure thorough pacification by having
them appear in all parts of the country.
The American marines met with no serious opposition
except in the Cibao, in the section between Monte Cristi,
Puerto Plata and Santiago, where the friends of Arias were
strongest. To clear this section two columns were launched
from the seacoast with Santiago as the objective, the first
of 800 men from Monte Cristi, the second of about 200 men
from Puerto Plata, the entire force being under command of
Brigadier-General Joseph H. Pendleton. The expeditionary force
from Monte Cristi, under Colonel Dunlop, advanced along the
highway, which was a muddy trail through a jungle of cactus and
thorny brush, and several Americans were shot from ambush.
Repeatedly small detachments of rebels made a stand upon some
favorable piece of ground, until routed by the marines. The
decisive encounter took place on July 1, 1916, at Guayacanes,
near Esperanza, where a force of 400 marines after a stubborn
fight carried a strongly entrenched position defended by about
300 rebels. The American losses were 1 enlisted man killed
and 1 officer.and 7 enlisted men wounded; the rebels are esti-
mated to have lost several score between killed and wounded,
their leader, Maximito Cabral, being killed fighting in the
trenches after all his men were dead or driven off.
The second column, from Puerto Plata, under iajor Bearss,
opened up the railroad, encountering its principal resistance
at the tunnel south of Altamira. The two columns joined forces
at Navarrete and then occupied Santiago. All the insurgents
eventually dispersed or surrendered, and Arias himself submitted
to the American military control, which became absolute throughout
the country. The total American losses in occupying the country
viere 3 officers killed and 3 wounded and 4 enlisted men killed
and 12 wounded; the losses of the insurgents are estimated at
between 100 and 300 killed and wounded.
The Dominican Congress proceeded on July 25, 1916, to
elect a temporary president, and chose Dr, Francisco Henriquez
Carvajal, a distinguished physician and highly cultured man.
It was understood that he was to hold the office for six
months and was not to seek re-election at the general election
to be held within that time. The United States government,
however, was loath to extend recognition unless assured that
Santo Domingo would enter upon a path of order rnd progress.
The fiscal treaty of 1907 had not secured the peace expected
of it; the prohibition against the contracting of further
indebtedness had been frequently violated; disorder and cor-
ruption had continued; and the American government deemed its
task uncompleted if it should surrender the country to the
same chaotic conditions. It accordingly required, as a con-
dition of recognizing Henriquez, that a new treaty between
the two countries be adopted, similar to the one apliroved
between the United States and Haiti, when a series of revolu-
tions culminating in a massacre of prisoners the year before
had obliged the American government to intervene. The prin-
cipal features of this treaty were the collection of customs
under American auspices, the appointment of an American
financial adviser, and the establishment of a constabulary
force officered by Americans.
Henriquez, jealous of his country's sovereignty and
fearful that the proposed arrangement would make the Dominican
government a puppet controlled by all-powerful American
officials, refused to accede to the American demands. The
American authorities thereupon declined to pay over any of the
Republic's revenues to a government which they did not recognize.
Inasmuch as they not only collected the customs and port dues,
but had assumed control of the other revenues as well, the
Henriquez government was penniless. Nevertheless, the American
demands continued to be rejected. As a result, no salaries
were paid to any one in any part of the Republic; the officials
who continued in the discharge of their duties did so with
the hope of being compensated at some future time; some ser-
vices, such as the mail service, were discontinued almost en-
tirely; and the whole machinery of the government was paralyzed.
This condition lasted for several months. As the
term for which Henriquez had been elected drew to a close,
it became evident that he had no idea of retiring from the
presidency, but, on the contrary, intended to hold general
elections, in which he expected to be the successful candidate.
The American government now determined to cut the Gordian knot.
On November 29, 1916, Captain (later Rear-Admiral) H. S.
Knapp, of the United States navy, commander of the American
cruiser force in Dominican waters, and of the forces of occupa-
tion of the Dominican Republic, issued a proclamation, de-
claring the Dominican Republic under the military administration
of the United States. The proclamation recited that the
Dominican Republic had failed to live up to the terms of the
treaty of 1907; that the American government had patiently
endeavored to aid the Dominican government, but that the latter
was not inclined to,adopt the measures suggested, wherefore
the American government believed the time at hand to take steps
to assure the execution of said Convention iand to maintain