Michel Domingue Reluctant Leader of Haiti

Michel Domingue, 13th President of Haiti, began life in Les Cayes in 1813. Coming from an educated background, he attended military school where he graduated. A natural military leader, he was appointed a commander over army troops in the South Department, after graduation.


The Council of Secretaries of State (CSS), the then-current ruling body, appointed Domingue President of Haiti in June of 1874. Domingue, reluctant to assume many duties of office, appointed Septimus Rameau, a high-level official of the CSS to administer public functions of ruling. Rameau and Domingue were opposites, Rameau tyrannical and oppressive, Domingue retiring and melancholic.

Domingue's greatest strength lay in foreign policy. Upon assuming office, he negotiated a peace treaty with the Dominican Republic (DR), ending a brutal border conflict of several years duration. Author of the treaty, he sent both Rameau and Chief of Staff, General N. Léger, to Santo Domingo to draw up the accord. It was successfully signed into law on January 20, 1875.

On domestic issues, Domingue was less successful. His loan negotiation with the French government put Haiti in the red for many years. His administration, weakened by internal strife, forced him to place two military officers under arrest. Government opposition lashed out at Domingue's handling of the loan. Government of Haiti operatives hunted the opposition's suspects, one of whom escaped, the others murdered. These deaths were pinned on Rameau and his assassination happened next. Domingue, threatened by Rameau's death, left office and exiled himself to Jamaica, where he died soon after.

Reply to this article

Read more: Cayes, Haitian President, Michel Domingue, Septimus Rameau, People

Main | Les Cayes A Beautiful Town In Haiti »

Return to Articles List

Leave a Reply

Name (required)

E-mail (required, will not be published)

Subject: Michel Domingue Reluctant Leader of Haiti edit

» »

Our objective is to share with you news and information about Haiti and the people of Haiti. Traditions, habits and the way we were  or  grew are alive in this site. We highly recommend that you Subscribe to our Newsletter and also share with us some of the things that are memorable and made us unique people.