Haiti: History

  1. 1492

    Christopher Columbus lands on the island and names it Hispaniola.

  2. 1496

    Spain establishes the first European settlement in the Western hemisphere in Santo Domingo, known now as the capital of the Dominican Republic.

  3. 1697

    Spain cedes the western part of Hispaniola, now known as Haiti, to France.

  4. 1804

    Haiti becomes independent.

  5. 1915

    The United States invades Haiti and maintains fiscal control until 1947.

  6. 2004

    Severe floods lead to economic hardships; international donors pledge more than one billion dollars in aid.

  7. 2006

    The United States partially lifts an arms embargo that was originally imposed in 1991.

  8. 2008

    The government announces an emergency plan to cut the price of rice to try to control food riots. The United States and the World Bank announce 30 million extra dollars of food aid.

  9. 2009

    The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund forgive 80% of Haiti’s debt.

  10. 2010

    Up to 300,000 people are killed when a 7.0 magnitude earthquake strikes Port-au-Prince, the capital. International donors pledge $5.3 billion for reconstruction.


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