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a235: RE: a232: Christophe's Royal Dahomey (fwd)

From: Joel Dreyfuss <joel.dreyfuss@verizon.net>

The story is that the Royal Dahomeans were a group of warriors sold into
slavery by their conquerors in Africa; they were on a ship intercepted by
the Hatians during the Revolution (a kind of Haitian version of the Amistad
tale). Christophe offered to let them return or stay as his personal
bodyguard; they chose to stay. Jean Baptiste Richee was put in command of
the Royal Dahomeans; Richee was a commander in the revolution and a signer
of the Haitian declaration of independence. He later was president of Haiti
(1845-47). Richee is an ancestor on my mother's side of the family from the
area around Grande Riviere du Nord. Family lore is that Richee was himself a
descendant of Dahomeans, which may explain why he was chosen to lead the