Page:Haiti- Her History and Her Detractors.djvu/135

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119
Arrest of Toussaint Louverture.

heroic deeds. The fame of his name could not make up for the sympathies he had lost.

However, even as matters stood, Toussaint, though disarmed and defenseless, was still a cause of anxiety to Leclerc. On this account the Captain-General did his utmost to invite the great man whom he had vanquished to commit some act which would justify his arrest. French soldiers quartered at Ennery daily plundered his plantation. Ever cautious, Toussaint contented himself with making complaints about the depredations. But no notice was taken of his grievances; in consequence, he left Descahaux and withdrew to Beaumont, where persecutions followed him. Tired of the espionage and petty annoyance to which he was subjected, Toussaint wrote to Leclerc that he would be compelled to take shelter on one of his "hattes" (ranches) of the Spanish portion of the island. For fear he should escape from the military posts which surrounded him, the Captain-General decided to hasten the execution of his plans. In consequence he ordered General Brunet, who was in command at Gonaives, to arrest Toussaint; at the same time he wrote to the latter as follows:[1]

"Headquarters of Cap-Français, Prairial 16th year X of the Republic [5 June 1802].

"The Commander-in-Chief to General Toussaint,

"Since you persist, citizen General, in believing that the great number of soldiers quartered at Ennery cause fear among the cultivators of that parish, I have commissioned General Brunet to concert with you as to the stationing of these soldiers, some beyond Gonaives and others at Plaisance. You must warn the cultivators that this measure once taken, I will cause those who desert their plantations and take to the mountains to be arrested and punished. As soon as this order has been carried out, let me know the result, because should peaceful means fail I will have resort to military measures.

"LECLERC."

  1. The letters of Leclerc and Brunet to Toussaint can be found in Vol. V, pp. 174, 175 of B. Ardouin's Studies on Haitian History.