Petite Riviere de l'Artibonite and Its Significance

It may be a small town but Petite Rivière de l'Artibonite has a great significance to Haiti. Why? Because this is where the battle for Haiti's independence was fought. Petite Rivière de l'Artibonite is one of the four communes in Artibonite Arrondissement, the other three being the Dessalines, Grande Saline and Desdunes.


Petite Rivière de l'Artibonite is located near the east of Saint Marc. In 1802, Jean Jacques Dessalines led the forces of black people in a revolution against the French and defended the port of Crete-a-Pierrot in this town. The French colonial army under the leadership of General Charles Leclerc tried to take over the fort but Dessalines' forces held on and defended it. When the Haitian revolutionaries ran out of food and ammunitions, they were forced to leave the fort and pass through the French defense en route to Cahos Mountains. The French side then managed to gain control over the fort but with heavy consequences as it lost a lot of its people. The fighting then led to a deciding battle, wherein the Haitian revolutionaries drove away the French forces who decided to retreat.

In February 1803, after France withdrew its forces from the fort, Dessalines and Alexandre Petion, who was the leader of the mulattos, declared Haiti's independence in the town of Petite Rivière de l'Artibonite.

Currently, Petite Rivière de l'Artibonite is considered a quiet and friendly town. It hosts small farms and its market is thriving. With its history, Petite Rivière de l'Artibonite is recognized as a significant town in Haiti.

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