The Kingdom of Hayti's Yearly Almanacs

The Almanach Royal d’Hayti, published yearly beginning in 1813 and printed initially by P. Roux, are invaluable sources of information about the many different members of King Henry Christophe’s household and administration, as they include the title, honors, and rank of all of his staff. Once considered to be no longer extant, all six issues published in the Royal Kingdom of Hayti now appear together for the first time and in full text. (Note that each issue bears the date of the subsequent year, rather than the year in which it was published.)

Click on the publication’s title below to see more detail and discuss the contents.

Almanach Royal D’Hayti – 1820

Early in 1819, the Royal Press of Hayti, established in 1817, published its final issue of the Almanach Royal. This now 147-page volume, published as the issue for the year 1820, would bear the date that was to mark the downfall of Christophe’s kingdom and the suicide of the king himself.

Almanach Royal D’Hayti – 1818

Christophe moved the capital to the new palace at Sans Souci in January 1817. Shortly afterward, the Royal Press would also be established there. Buon, surname unknown, consequently replaced P. Roux as the Directeur de l’Iimprimerie Royale. The first official publication of the new press was the 1818 issue of the Almanach Royal, published like all other issues, the year before the date bearing its name.

Almanach Royal D’Hayti – 1817

Although, the year 1817 was when the royal press of Haiti moved to Sans Souci, this almanac was actually published the year prior, in 1816. Indeed, all of the almanacs were published in the year before the date that is a part of their title. 1816, thus, marks the last almanac that was printed by P. Roux. It is not known what happened to the Haitian state’s longstanding printer.

Almanach Royal D’Hayti – 1816

In August 1816, the Royal Kingdom of Hayti celebrated the "fête" of the Queen, Marie-Louise Coidavid, at Cap-Haïtien. The people of the city evidently welcomed the monarch and his family into the city with open arms. Baron de Vastey subsequently published a pamphlet about the lavish celebration with his, Relation: de la fête de S. M. la reine d'Hayti, des actes du gouvernement qui ont eu lieu durant cet événement, et de tout ce qui s'est passé à l'occasion de cette fête (1816), leading newspapers around the world to report these events as well.

Almanach Royal D’Hayti – 1815

In December 1815 two important events took place in Haiti. For one thing, the revolutionary, Simon Bolivar, arrived in Aux Cayes and sought a meeting with Alexandre Pétion. A French spy, named Franco de Medina, captured by Henry Christophe in 1814, was also interrogated and possibly executed, as Christophe refused to strike a treaty with France that would restore colonial status to the island.

Almanach Royal D’Hayti – 1814

The first issue of the Almanach Royal was published some time in 1813 by the state-run printer, P. Roux. The year 1814 that appears on the cover of this issue was an important one in Haiti, as it marked not only the publication of Baron de Vastey's Le système colonial dévoilé, but it was also the year that a treaty of peace was struck after years of civil war between Henry Christophe and Alexandre Pétion, the president of the southern Republic of Haiti, seated in Port-au-Prince.

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