“The god who created the sun which gives us light, who rouses the waves and rules the storm, though hidden in the clouds, he watches us. He sees all that the white man does. The god of the white man inspires him with crime, but our god calls upon us to do good works. Our god who is good to us orders us to revenge our wrongs. He will direct our arms and aid us. Throw away the symbol of the god of the whites who has so often caused us to weep, and listen to the voice of liberty, which speaks in the hearts of us all.” —attributed to Dutty Boukman, a Jamaican-born vodun priest in Haiti, August 21, 1791
At Bois Caiman in French occupied Haiti, slaves under the leadership of houngan Dutty Boukman performed a sacred traditional African ceremony to unify and inspire the oppressed and enslaved population. A week later the uprising inspired by the ceremony destroyed 1800 plantations and killed 1000 slaveholders. It was the beginning of the largest successful slave revolution, which resulted in Haiti’s independence in 1804.