Edwige Cohen

Edwige Cohen

Born in Gonaives, Haiti. This proud city birthplace of the independence. Edwidge did his primary studies “ chez les frères de l’instruction Chretienne” and his secondary studies at the elite “ST Louis  of Gonzaga” in Port au Prince. In October 1937 he left for Paris, France and enrolled at the Sorbonne for a Doctorate in Social Studies. The clouds were forming in Europe at the announcement of the Second World War that forced him to return in Haiti. He disembarked the transatlantic “ Le Bretagne” on September 3rd, 1939the same day of the official declaration of the war with France and England against Hitler’s Germany.

A series of publication about the events of the world war opened the door for him with the daily circulation at the time called “le Matin“presided by the great journalist and politically savvy Clement Magloire who convinced him to join the editorial board of the prestigious newspaper. Edwidge Cohen at 23 years of age became the youngest journalist in Haiti where he spent two years in that capacity at “le Matin”. Wanting to spread his own wings, he founded the newspaper “La commerce” in 1942. This specialized newspaper dealt only with economic affairs this spirit of independence wasn’t seeing kingly from the dictatorial government of the president of the republic Mr. Elie Lescot who ordered his minister of the interior to close the newspaper down.

Its within that time Edwidge Cohen met the woman who later will share his life. They married in August 8th, 1942 at the Sacred Heart church of “Turgeau”. The marriage between Edwige Cohen and Erigenie Bosquiat was blessed with the birth of two kids Edwidge jr. and Gladys. The 1946 uprising of the movement of revendication by the youths of the “Ruche” in which Edwidge Cohentook an active part, brought down the the fall of the government of Elie Lescot. Edwidge Cohen founded the newspaper “Lberty” where he staunchly upheld the constitution and defended human rights to the best of his abilities. Along with George Petit he launched the candidacy of a good patyriot from “Les Cayes” The Senator Neree Numa,but the selfishness of the policians and a very youg military brought about the government of Dumarsais Estime instead. Frustrated with politics he did an about face and entered the private sector.  He founded abook realease enterprise in the “rue Bonne Fois” and published a couple of books with historical nature. During that time the office of Ethnology founded by the poet Jacques Roumain was in its enfancy. Edwidge Cohen joined this small group of researchers in the study of the Haitian Folklore. These pioneers like the major Maximillien, Odette Rigaud, wife of Milo Rigaud who encarcerated at the time in the Kurt Fisher section pre Colombian, helped the office of Lorimere Denis established what will be known later on as the Institute of Ethnology of Haiti. During that time Edwidge Cohen published his studies entitled “Vodou Negres et Superstition Blanche”  wich became a best seller and commande a second publication. He demonstrated in his mwrittings tha the voodoo was a religion in essence brought about by the French colony from different region in France. The intellectual Mesmin Gabriel then director of the secondary Institution mandated a five year study of these publications in the Haitian Universities.

At the fall of President Magloire from power, Edwidge Cohen resumed its publication of his newspaper “Liberty” where he was able to support freely the candidate of his choice. This activity was short live, due to a clash with the government he went back mto the private sector.

In 1967 he received the Masonic light and became Orator of the Lodge “L’amitie des frères reunis #1”. Two years later he was elected Venerable of the Lodge and overswaw about its renovation. Among other things he founded a free primary care school and a dispensary, also free. These accomplishments brought about the jalousy and htred in others and he had to find a safer climate in New York where he rooted and founded two lodges “L’elan Mystic” and the feminine Lodge “Les Roses du Carmel” in which they pay homage to the chivalry without sins and fears.

In 1982 the destiny of the great Lodge of St Jean was born to lead the Haitian Brotherhood. The impact of the multiple enumerations, accomplishments and accolades of this Great Master will have a lasting effect positively for generations to come.

 

Alexandre Sabès Pétion

Alexandre Petion

Alexandre Sabès Pétion (April 2, 1770 – March 29, 1818) was the first President of the Republic of Haiti from 1806 until his death in 1818. He is one of Haiti’s founding fathers, together with Toussaint Louverture, Jean-Jacques Dessalines, and his rival Henri Christophe

 

Henri Christophe

Henry Christophe

Henri Christophe (6 October 1767 – 8 October 1820); was a former slave and key leader in the Haitian Revolution, which succeeded in gaining independence from France in 1804. In 1805 he took part under Jean-Jacques Dessalines in the capturing of Santo Domingo (now Dominican Republic), against French forces who acquired the colony from Spain in the Treaty of Basel.

After Dessalines was assassinated, Christophe retreated to the Plaine-du-Nord and created a separate government. On 17 February 1807, he was elected President of the State of Haiti, as he named that area. Alexandre Pétion was elected president in the South. On 26 March 1811, Christophe created a kingdom in the North and had himself proclaimed Henry I, King of Haïti. He also created a nobility and named his legitimate son Jacques-Victor Henry as prince and heir.

 

Jean K. Gousse

Jean K. Gousse1

Jean K. Gousse was Grand Master of the Order of the Grand Orient of Haiti and became Grand Secretary and Lord Chancellor before he passed away on the 27th of May 2013

 

Jean-Pierre Boyer

Jean Pierre Boyer

Jean-Pierre Boyer (15 February 1776 – 9 July 1850) was one of the leaders of the Haitian Revolution, and President of Haiti from 1818 to 1843. He reunited the north and south of Haiti in 1820 and also occupied and took control of Santo Domingo, which brought all of Hispaniola under one government by 1822. Boyer managed to rule for the longest period of time of any of the revolutionary leaders of his generation.

Born a free gens de couleur (or an elite mulatto) in Saint-Domingue (modern-day Haiti) and educated in France, Boyer had fought with Toussaint Louverture in the early years of the Haitian Revolution. He allied himself with André Rigaud, also of mulatto ancestry, in the latter’s abortive insurrection against Toussaint to try to keep control of the southern region of Saint-Domingue.

After going into exile in France, Boyer and Alexandre Pétion, another mulatto, returned in 1802 with the French troops led by General Charles Leclerc. After it became clear the French were going to try to reimpose slavery and restrictions on free gens de couleur, Boyer joined the patriots under Pétion and Jean-Jacques Dessalines, who led the colony to independence. After Pétion rose to power in the State of Haiti in the South, he chose Boyer as his successor. He was reportedly under the influence of his (and his predecessor’s) lover, Marie-Madeleine Lachenais, who acted as his political adviser.

When Santo Domingo became independent late in 1821, Boyer was quick to occupy and gain control, uniting the entire island under his rule by 9 February 1822. Boyer ruled the island of Hispaniola until 1843, when he lost the support of the ruling elite and was ousted.

 

François-Dominique Toussaint Louverture

Toussaint_Louverture

François-Dominique Toussaint Louverture (20 May 1743 – 7 April 1803), also known as Toussaint L’Ouverture, Toussaint Bréda, and nicknamed the “Napoléon Noir” (Black Napoleon), was the leader of the Haitian Revolution. His military genius and political acumen transformed an entire society of slaves into the independent state of Haiti. The success of the Haitian Revolution shook the institution of slavery throughout the New World.

Toussaint Louverture began his military career as a leader of the 1791 slave rebellion in the French colony of Saint-Domingue; he was by then a free black man. Initially allied with the Spaniards of neighboring Santo Domingo, Toussaint switched allegiance to the French when they abolished slavery. He gradually established control over the whole island and used political and military tactics to gain dominance over his rivals. Throughout his years in power, he worked to improve the economy and security of Saint-Domingue. He restored the plantation system using paid labour, negotiated trade treaties with Britain and the United States, and maintained a large and well-disciplined army.

In 1801 he promulgated an autonomist constitution for the colony, with himself as governor for life. In 1802 he was forced to resign by forces sent by Napoleon Bonaparte to restore French authority in the former colony. He was deported to France, where he died in 1803. The Haitian Revolution continued under his lieutenant, Jean-Jacques Dessalines, who declared independence in early 1804. The French had lost two-thirds of forces sent to the island in an attempt to suppress the revolution; most died of yellow fever.