Posted by hougansydney.com on Wednesday, October 8, 2014
Mackandal was a Voodoo Priest (Hougan) from Senegal, an orator in the opinion of a white contemporary equal in eloquence to the European orators of the day, and different only in his superior strength and vigor. He was fearless and, though one-handed from an accident had a fortitude spirit.
An escaped slave, He organized one of the most successful revolutions known today as The Mackandal Revolution. Mackandal organized a widespread plot, that on a particular day the water of every house in the capital of the provinces was to be poisoned and the general attack made on the whites while they were in the convulsions and anguish of death. He had list of all members of his party in each slave gang; appointed captains, lieutenants and other officers; arranged for band of Negroes to leave the town and spread over the plains to massacre the white planters. The movement spread great terrors and reputedly killed more than 6000 whites slaves owners.
Mackandal's temerity was the cause of his downfall in 1758. He went one day to a plantation, got drunk and was betrayed by a female slave who was tortured into submission. French authorities captured and burned Mackandal alive in a public place in Cap Haitian. Mackandal had claimed to be immortal, and because of that many slaves believed that he had escaped the burning, by transforming himself into a fly or mosquito.
The Mackandal rebellion never reached fruition and it was the only hint of an organized revolt preceding the French Revolution.