Details of the Haitian Massacre of 1937

The Dominican Republic and Haiti on the island of Hispaniola.

It has been widely held that in October of 1937 a massacre took place in the Dominican Republic involving Haitians by orders of dictator Rafael Leonidas Trujillo. It is very common to see figures of upwards of 20,000; 30,000; even 50,000 victims. The purpose is to gain an understanding of these numbers and if they are realistic or exaggerated. Furthermore, we will look into what the Haitian government investigations say of their findings within days of the occurence and what changes they had as time went on.

“Border of Lights”

The Dominican-American author (born, grew up and lives in the United States) Julia Álvarez founded the organization “Border of Lights.” In 2012 this organization organized a trip to the border between the Dominican Republic and Haiti which included her presence (the event is celebrated every year, though with the Covid restrictions this could had been interrupted or became virtual). Nowhere in the website of the organization is there an estimate of how many victims, a rarity of any site referrencing a massacre. Silvio Torres-Saillant (see here in the section “A Special Look at Silvio Torres-Saillant”), a Dominican that has been living in the United States since 1973 and is a major proponent of the American invented One-Drop-Rule, plus the founder of the CUNY Dominican Studies Institute and a friend of Julia Álvarez, called the event the following.

Silvio Torres-Saillant mentioning the event of “Border of Lights” (an NGO founded by Dominican-American Julia Álvarez) that took place in October 2012 in Dajabón by the Dominican-Haitian border to commemorate the victims of the 1937 massacre. Lets keep in mind that by this time it had been 75 years since the massacre and he’s talking about “begin the healing process.”
An excerpt from the Border of Lights website in the description of the massacre. Strangely is that nowhere in the website is referred to estimates of victims. In this particular quote, they claim that “civilians were given shotguns to kill Haitians.” This appears to be an invention from them. The US Marines disarmned the entire Dominican popularion during the American invasion 1916 – 1924 and it was one of the details that allowed the rise of the Trujillo dictatorship. Not even the National Police nor the Dominican military had firearms except batons. A very select group including Trujillo himself and several trusted officers in his circle were given the privilige of owning a gun and only one, never a shotgun. Their claim also enters in murky waters by saying that “civilians were given shotguns” when they also claim it was done by the Dominican military and it has been reiterated even by modern historians like Bernardo Vega, who they include as one from who they cited, that the Dominican civilian population had nothing to do with the border incident. It’s highly unlikely that with a disarmned civilian and military population, they would be “given shotguns” and completely unlikely that civilians were “given shotguns.” As stated before, not even Trujillo and the select group of men in his circle that were allowed to have a gun had shotguns.
In this section they make reference to the Regularization Plan which started in 2013. As expected, they pretend the bill didn’t exclude legal Haitian immigrants. As the name purports, it was a regularization plan and during the time it took place, the Dominican government did various things they don’t mention (not convenient?) such as the cease of all deportations to Haiti, relaxation of the necessary documentstion needed to be part of the regularization plan (even a small note on a napkin by a landlord confirming that such-and-such was living there was enough to be included), several extensions for Haitians to join the regularization plan despite the original regularization plan didn’t had the possibility of an extension, etc.
Worldwide birthright citizenship. Even though most countries of the world don’t recognize birthright citizenship without limitations (Jus Solis), notice that the island of Hispaniola along with Colombia (who is currently suffering a massive illegal immigration problem from neighboring Venezuela) is entirely in gray, a rarity in the Western Hemisphere. In order for the entire island of Hispaniola to be gray requires that Haiti don’t recognize Jus Solis either. It begs the question if Haiti is suffering from an illiegal immigration problem and from where considering its current issues as the poorest country in the America, even poorer than most countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, which is one of the world’s poorest and undeveloped areas. Not to mention the current issue with gangs that have given Port-au-Prince the dubious title of the hemisphere leading city of kidnappings.

It’s interesting they don’t mention at all how citizenship is conferred in neighboring Haiti. They don’t even recognize Jus Solis (citizenship by birth) which in effect means any Dominican couple that has a child in Haitian is not Haitian, even if he lives his entire life in Haiti. Although Haiti is in tune with most countries in the world by not recognizing Jus Solis, it’s one of the few countries in the Americas that doesn’t give citizenship by birth place. In addition, Haiti requires a visa to Dominicans before any can enter Haitian territory.
Venezuelans overflowing Isabel La Católica Street in Santo Domingo. In the spring of 2021, Venezuelans fills a part of a street to take part of the Venezuelan Regularization Plan. There are an estimate of more than 100,000 Venezuelan immigrants in the Dominican Republic with an illegal status.

Even more telling is there lack of mentioning the Venezuelan Regularization Plan which started in April 2021 and is still taking place. No anti-Dominican campaign of any kind via the international media. In fact, outside the Dominican Republic the Venezuelan Regularization Plan is hardly known despite the Dominican government estimated it would benefit more than 100,000 Venezuelans currently in the Dominican Republic in illegal status. Do a regularization plan with Venezuelans and there is no issue, hardly known outside the Dominican Republic.

Do a regularization plan with Haitians and an entire international anti-Dominican campaign takes place, protests in the Santo Domingo by hundreds of Haitians, and organizations such as Border of Lights, institutions like the CUNY Dominican Studies Institute and proponents of the American invented One-Drop-Rule and has lived in the USA for most of his life such as Silvio Torres-Saillant (also the founder of the CUNY Dominican Studies Institute) publicly condemning the plan and claiming ‘racism, negrophobia’ and other nonsense. The double standards is quite evident. The difference is like day and night.

Typical Paper Mentioning the Border Incident

We also noticed that in the paper “Dos Rayanos Americanos Rewrite Hispaniola: Julia Álvarez and Junot Díaz” published in the United States by Megan Jeanette Myers from Iowa State University it constanty mentions the massacre. In addition, it also claims that the Dominican Republic suffers from “negrophobia and anti-Haitianism” (see here in the section “Relating Dominican Identity to the Dominican-Haitian Dilemma), an important part to understand the massacre from their point-of-view. We also found the following in the paper.

Dos Rayanos Americanos Rewrite Hispaniola: Julia Álvarez and Junot Díaz” by Megan Jeanette Myers.

Here the author mention an estimate of 20,000 and includes “Dominicans of Haitian descent.”
Dos Rayanos Americanos Rewrite Hispaniola: Julia Álvarez and Junot Díaz” by Megan Jeanette Myers.

The word “rayano” (in plural an ‘s’ is added at the end) is defined by the Real Academia Española (RAE) as “que está en la raya que divide dos territorios” or “on the line that divides two territories.” In the Dominican Republic, the term is applied to anyone that was born in the border region with a Haitian father and Dominican mother or a Dominican father and a Haitian mother.
Dos Rayanos Americanos Rewrite Hispaniola: Julia Álvarez and Junot Díaz” by Megan Jeanette Myers.

This is a rather interesting section if only for what she says here: “occupation in the nineteenth century.” It could that be she refers to the Haitian Domination which lasted for 22 years (1822 – 1844) and not the multiple Haitian military invasions which includes the 1801, 1805, 1821, 1844, 1845. 1849, 1852, 1856 and it was getting ready for another Haitian invason of the Dominican Republic in 1859 except that at the last minute the plan was eliminated due to a coup d’etat in Port-au-Prince. The reason why we think these invasions spanning a period of 55 years (a little more than two generations) are not reference to with the terms is because “occupation” is single and not in plural. We didn’t notice a mention that while Haiti invaded the Dominican Republic on several occasions and most of them were belligerent in nature, plus countless Haitian lead “mini bloody invasions” along the border where the victims were Dominicans more often then not, that the Dominican Republic since its independence in 1844 has never invaded Haiti. Also not mentioned is that Haitians have committed multiple massacres involving Dominican victims during those invasions, while the Dominican Republic has never committed any massacres of Haitians in Haitian soil. No Dominican desire to erase the Haitians from the face of the earth, including the ancestors of people like Julia Álvarez who would had never been born if those massacres were complete.

The author did include this about Junot Díaz.

Whether Junot Díaz is a racist is debatable, but in 2018 he was accused of sexual misconduct and mysoginistic behavior by several women, an accusation that took place in the country he lives in, the United States. (See here) He did mentioned his “I was raped when a child” when the accusations of his sexual miaconducts erupted as a large number of women came out with their testimony of victims of his sexual misconduct. As tragic as being raped when a kid can be, Diaz is not the only man who was raped when young. How many of them develop sexual misconducts towards women, many of whom admired him until they had the unwanted sexual events with him?

In addition, the author also claims that the Haitian massacre has impacted Haitian authors during the 20th century and 21st century.

A quote of René Philoctète is here in the section “Hints of Expanding Haiti to Include All of Hispaniola.” Furthermore, this article explains the origin of the name Massacre for the river in the XVII century.

Although there is much more to quote, this gives a nice idea of the viewpoint regarding the Haitian massacre of 1937 and how it’s used as part of a theory involving anti-Haitianism, racism, negrophobia, the Trujillo dictatorship and other aspects of the Dominican Republic past and present.

Now that we have an idea of what people that decades after the event took place decide to write about it or incorporate in their imaginery of that event. Of these same people, many were not born at the time and others were not born on the island. They do have decades living in the United States and, in fact, whatever they publish more often than not is in English, a language that isn’t native to the Dominican Republic or Haiti. They also are believers in the USA invented One-Drop-Rule. Keeping all of this in mind, lets explore the rest of our thesis.

Where are the Haitian Remains?

One of the greatest misteries surrounding the claims that the victims numbered in the tens of thousands is the following question. Why a single Dominican or otherwise anthropologist, archeologist or everyday people haven’t found a single human remains pertaining to Haitians from 1937? It has been over 84 years since the event, at least one should had been found by now on purpose or by accident.

Our belief that at least one Haitian remains from 1937 should had been found by now is that every century remains are discovered in the Dominican Republic pertaining to Europeans, Dominicans, Tainos and even of Haitians from dates around the multiple invasions they did against Dominicans in the XIX century. Why then exactly 0 remains have been found of victims from 1937?

In 2007, construction workers of a plaza in Moca discovered a forgotten tomb (see here) at the construction site. According to an investigation done by a scientific team using carbon dating, the remains are from the XVII century. That is at least three centuries before 1937. In fact, the ancestors of most Haitians alive today were still in Africa at that time, considering that at the time of the Haitian Revolution half of Haitians were born in Africa and most of the other half had around one generation born on the island. A single generation is nowhere near 100 years.

Even more impressive is the findings of remains in 2011 on the north coast beach playa Grande near Río San Juan, Dominican Republic. Those are not of Haitians since no Haitian remains from 1937 has ever been found in the Dominican Republic. Those are of Tainos, the amerindians that lived on the island before the arrival of the Spanish. In the Caribbean, Puerto Ricans and Dominicans have the most remaining Taino ancestry in the average DNA, even though Tainos were dominant in much of modern Cuba, Jamaica and Haiti too. It is a mistery that no Haitian remains have been found, but the construction workers stumbled on these Taino remains dated to be 500 to 1,000 years old (see here).

The Findings

As we investigate articles in the Listín Diario newspaper, we notice something already noted by other Dominican historians. The amount of victims of 1937 tends to increase with the passage of time. This must be the only massacre that continues to make people “disappear” over more than three-quarters of the time since it happened.

For the sake of space and time, we will limit translating only the pertaining parts of the articles rather then the entirety of each article.

Osvaldo Bazil’s Protest

On January 1, 1938 minister of the Dominican Republic in Brazil, Mr Osvaldo Bazil, comments regarding errors he identified in the international media concerning the incident on the northern border between the Dominican Republic and Haiti. His protest was recorded in “No hay margen para conflicto internacional.”

TRANSLATION: “…[They] talk of thousands of victims on the borders. That’s an error: the small Haitian and Dominican border towns don’t have thousands of inhabitants for so many to die in such event.”
TRANSLATION: “The victims don’t surpass the more or less figure of 40 people and that makes it impossible that the victims numbers 5,000 as they claim.”

Osvaldo Bazil also makes reference to this event published on December 6, 1937 which took place near the border, but since the aggressors were Haitians and the victims Dominicans the international media remain quiet. This took place in the La Peñita community in Monte Cristi province of the Dominican Republic and the perpetraitors were Haitian countryfolks that crossed illegally into the Dominican Republic and created the bloody scene. We will translate the relevant parts only.

TRANSLATION: “A group of over 30 Haitians and armed with machetes attacked the place of agricultural interest. They injured and killed several of our agriculturalists in order to steal their produce and domestic animals. It has repeated once more one of the many Haitian incursions into our territory.”

Immediate Haitian Government Investigation

Immediately as Port-au-Prince received news from Haiti’s National Guards stationed along the border concerning the occurence on the northern border with the Dominican Republic, the Haitian government decided to do its own investigation of the matter. It organized a small group that headed to the northern part of Haiti. The reason why the investigation was done in northern Haiti only is because the authorities never got news of any issue along the southern and central parts of the border. The most valuable aspect of this investigation is the time it was done immediately after the occurence.

On December 14, 1937 an article was published about the memorandum reached in the United States by representatives of the United States, Mexico and Cuba regarding the incident on the northern frontier between the Dominican Republic and Haiti.

The title page of the Listín Diario of December 14, 1937 with the most important news the memorandum reached in Washington DC by representatives of the United States, Mexico and Cuba to the Dominican Republic regarding the incident on the northern frontier with Haiti.

Within the memorandum, which appears in its entirety of the newspaper and covers many pages, there is a reference to the Haitian government investigation within days of the occurence.

“On October 2 of this year, the Haitian government was made aware by members of the Haitian army stationed in Ouanaminthe, that some Haitian residents in the Dominican Republic returned to Haiti after receiving the worst treatments. Immediately a serious investigation was ordered by the Haitian government. It has been confirmed through this investigation that in the hospitals of Cape Haitien and Ouanaminthe were found around ten injured men, women and children. They have severe wounds and claim they were made by Dominican army soldiers with machetes. In addition to the testimony of these victims, investigators witnessed along the border on the side of Dajabon several dead Haitians. It’s not yet known why or if they committed a crime.”

Noticeable is the lack of numbers other than the 10 injured and were treated at the hospitals in Cape Haitien and Ouanaminthe. It is interesting that given what had transpired mere days before, rather than being overrun with injured they only found 10 combined in two hospitals. Assuming the amount of those killed would had been in the thousands, the injured should had been many more as is the case whenever something happens by nature or man where some people lose their lives. Not only should they had found many more injured in Haitian hospitals, it should had been relatively easy to find those that returned to Haiti without any injuries, assuming the event was of several thousands.

Another interesting findings is that while they confirm having seen “several dead Haitians” on the Dajabon side (the Dominican side of the border.) As lamentable and horrific the scene must had been, the fact that no number is mentioned and everything is resumed as “several” gives the impression that it wasn’t many or a sea of cadavers. In fact, the definition of “several” in the Oxford Dictionary is “more than two but not many.”

So far, what we have is that a serious investigation done within days if the event by the Haitian government finds no more than 10 injureds combined in just two Haitian hospitals and “more than two but not many” Haitian cadavers on the Dominican side of the border. It also appears they had trouble finding Haitians that went back to Haiti after the event. This is somewhat shocking if we are to assume that the incident comprised of thousands of deaths, many more thousands of injured and many more thousands of people returning after witnessing a massacre.

Another interesting fact is that while Megan Jeanette Myers asserts in her 2016 essay “Dos Rayanos Americanos Rewrite Hispaniola: Julia Álvarez and Junot Díaz” that there were “Dominicans of Haitian descent” when the investigation of the Haitian government finds Haitians only, never mentions “Dominicans of Haitian descent.” This is in the same quote we present further up where she says “an estimated 20,000 Haitians and Dominicans of Haitian descent were killed.”

Thus far, not a single remain of Haitians from 1937 have been found, intentionally or by accident, in the Dominican Republic while during the same time many remains of people from before 1937 have been found, including remains of Taino indians from hundreds and a thousand years ago. In addition, we have a reference to a serious investigation by the Haitian government done within days of the incident where it only finds a few injureds and a few dead ones and no healthy people that arrived fleeing the Dominican Republic.

Negotiations between the Dominican and Haitian Governments

After the incident and the investigations done by the Haitian government, both governments of the island reunited and in a negotiation that took place on October 15, 1937 reached several agreements, mostly demands on the Dominican government. These were included in the memorandum shown previously, but we will reference to the pertaining parts.

Among the many things contained here are the following. “With the goal of preventing that some incidents that ocurred in the northern frontier lead to exaggerated claims that would be contrary to the harmony and cordiality… between the two countries…” Once again it says “…it should be known that the cordial relations between the Dominican Republic and Haiti haven’t suffered at all.”

This is in tune with an incident that didn’t involve many deaths, injured and others affected. However, if the real numbers was in the thousands for all three categories, it could mean that the Haitian government itself doesn’t care much about its people.

In this section of the agreements between the Dominican Republic and Haiti from the negotiations, it catches the attention parts 3, 4 and 5. In part 3 it mentions that the incident would be resolved upon the satisfaction of both governments. In other words, this would be the “healing” of the event. Sections 4 and 5 refers to the amicable relations between the Dominican Republic and Haiti, and how the incidents that occured on the border didn’t affect them at all.

Tendency to Exaggerate the Number of Victims by the International Media

On December 3, 1937 an article was published with the title “Cómo juzga la prensa seria de otros países el incidente de la frontera domínico-haitiana” and the subtitle is very telling.

The following was reprinted from the “Bohemia” magazine published on November 21, 1937 in Havana, Cuba.

TRANSLATION: “It seems that there is an interest in exaggerating the number of victims to give an opportunity to certain auxilieries of consulates and embassies of an amicable solution.” In other words, increase the number of suppose victims so that the solution looks better.
TRANSLATION: “Some news agencies from the United States seem to give the frontier collisions greater importance than it merits…”
TRANSLATION: “The articles transmitted by The Associated Press regarding Haiti and the Dominican Republic without a doubt are exaggerated and sensationalist.”
TRANSLATION: “…They pretend a massacre in such dimensions. The density of that region is 16 inhabitants per square kilometer and that implies a very considerable destruction if the killed numbers 2,500 to 3,000 people. It would be a massacre of unknown proportions. Another inexplicable situation is that with the Haitians having such a close protection from its fellow Haitians across the border and they didn’t come to their help, considering the incident took place in the vicinity of Dajabon, a few kilometers from the border.”
TRANSLATION: “Anyway, it should be noted that the exaggeration in the reports has been extraordinary and some people have taken advantage of them to do propaganda of a certain type. The benefits are those who stands to gain diplomatic glories a expense of the two countries, because it doesn’t benefit the Haitian people or the Dominican people.”
TRANSLATION: “…On February 27, 1935 it was agreed by both countries a treaty that put an end to a border dispute that both countries had for 55 years. It was put in effect on March 9, 1936… in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.”

Dominicans Involved in Exaggerating the Incident

On December 8, 1937 a article “Los incidentes fronterizos alientan la reelección” further mention of the exaggeration and sensationalism revolving the incident in the international media, headed most by news agencies based in the United States.

TRANSLATION: “The Dominican Republic and Haiti were about to disrupt the peace due to a Haitian massacre on the border of both countries. The news was circulated worldwide through cables and radios by informative agencies from the United States.”

Dominicans were also found among the exaggerators of the incident. These perhaps were dissidents of the Trujillo dictatorship that emigrated to the United States either pushed by the regime or decided on their own to leave the country. It’s known that dissidents of the Trujillo regime were involved in certain actions that would affect the image of the dictator beyond the Dominican Republic.

TRANSLATION: “For the Dominicans have seen how an issue without importance has been exaggerated and made bigger, an international scandal. The indignation rises further when the authors of these exaggerated account are two or three infamous Dominicans in conjuntion with Haitians of the same type and some Americans speculating on the Hispanic-American politics.”
TRANSLATION: “The right to the treaties and the existing good relations between the Dominican and Haitian governments didn’t give reason to ruin this and Haiti united affirming this in an official communication that were published simultaneously in both countries.”

Haiti Begins to Exaggerate the Number of Victims

On December 18, 1937 is published “‘Le Canadá Latín’ ridiculiza la información del Gobierno de Haití sobre el incidente fronterizo” where it is noted how Haiti itself is increasing the number of victims of the incident.

TRANSLATION: “On account of the Haitian-Dominican crisis, the [Haitian] president Vincent affirms that the amount of victims rises to 8,000. Is he intending to every week increase the amount, perhaps add 1,000 each time?”
TRANSLATION: “The first report from Haiti mentions the death of several hundreds of women and children. In the second report sent to us…”
TRANSLATION: “…the death of many thousands of women and children and it was written by an American. The third report sent from Haiti and also written by an American claims the figure is 7,000. While we received these reports from Haiti, we haven’t received any reports from the Dominican Republic.”
TRANSLATION: “Furthermore, from the Haitian side it started to ask from the American government an investigation and subject the problem to an international arbitration. [Haitian] President Vincent has just affirmed that the victims amount to 8,000.”
TRANSLATION: “This persistence doesn’t supports the honorability of one nation screaming “assassins” while knowing very well that “the crisis” hasn’t been anything else than a simple frontier incident, like countless others that could happen.”

Andrés Pastoriza Rejects the Veracity of the Haitians

On December 27, 1937 Minister Andrés Pastoriza in Washington DC accuses the Haitians of arbitrarily increasing the amount of victims which doesn’t corresponds with census records. He also says that many Haitian politicians are trying to increase the economic indemnization. This indemnizatoon was later paid by the Dominican government to the Haitian government by the agreed amount of heads of the victims. Not only was it increased to increase the money the Dominican government was to transfer to the Haitian government, but it was never known if the families of the “victims” got the money or if the Haitian politicians kept it all for themselves.

TRANSLATION: “Pastoriza accuses the Haitians to increase the amount of deaths in the alleged massacre with premeditation and malice.”
TRANSLATION: “Pastoriza presented the data from the census about the movement of Haitians and alleges that in October there were 105 Haitians. Meanwhile, on November 6 the official Haitian report affirms that 1,010 were dead. If it was possible to believe that now the number of deads is at 12,000. This represents the systematic increase that those that were eyewitnesses say there is no justification to declare that the deads would increase to 1,000…”

Dominican Republic Pays Indemnization to Haiti

The “healing process” regarding the massacre took place at the moment the government of the Dominican Republic agreed to pay an indemnization to Haiti. This occured despite the exaggerations and falsely increasing the number of victims, which was done by the Haitian government presumably because the indemnization was done on a certain amount of money per head of the victims. The more victims, the more money for the pockets of Haitian politicians in what essentially is the poorest and least developed country in the Western Hemisphere and poorer than most countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, not to mention yearly ranking as one of the world’s most corrupt. Rather than Haitian politicians focusing on a effective erradication plan of malaria, reducing considerably the deforestation occuring at the time, improving public health care or public education; they focus on what was the most important thing for them, the amount of money that goes into their pockets.

The Dominican Republic and Haiti entered negotiations about the money the Dominican Republic would pay Haiti as an indemnization for the massacre. On February 1, 1938 was published an article about the economic agreement signed by the Dominican Republic and Haiti. The agreement itself took place on in Washington DC, as everyone knows is not the capital of Haiti or the Dominican Republic, was published the first article of the conclusion of negotiations between the two governments of the island. The indemnization consisted of US$750,000. In 2021 US dollars this is equivalent of approximately US$14,286,419. This was paid directly to Haitian politicians in Port-au-Prince, Haiti who promised to give the indemnization to the poor families of the massacre. It’s not known if they ever got the money from the Haitian government.

TRANSLATION: “Haiti and the Dominican Republic Signs Agreement Regarding the Border Incident in Washington”

The following are interesting parts of the economic agreement between the Dominican Republic and Haiti.

The economic agreeent between the two countries had the following representatives.
Dominican Republic: Andrés Pastoriza and Manuel de Jesús Troncoso de la Concha
Haiti: Abel N Leger and Hoffman Philips
Here it very clearly states that the victims were all Haitian nationals, not Dominicans of Haitian descent as claimed by many sources. Until 1994, the Dominican Republic never recognized dual nationality with Haiti or any country. In addition, since 1929 every Dominican constitution included the words “in transit” which covered within its definition illegal immigrants and stipulated that Dominican nationality isn’t given on birth to anyone with both parents who are “in transit.”
The total amount of money to be paid by the Dominican Republic to Haiti was US$750,000 (today equivalent to more than $14 million). It also stipulates that it must be paid in US dollars, despite the US dollar was the legal tender at this time in the Dominican Republic. The Dominican Peso wasn’t created until 1947, about 9 years after this economic agreement.
This part is quite interesting for the following reason. It gives the Haitian government the ability to dispose of the money as it see fit in benefit of the victims or families. This wasn’t followed through by the Haitian government since part of the money went “missing” in Port-au-Prince.
This one stipulates that Haitian nationals the enter Haiti as a consequence of the border incident and were residents in the Dominican Republic, continue to have the rights and owned their houshold goods (sofas, dining table, etc).
How the payments were to be made is stipulated in this section. One payment of US$250,000 (2021: US$4,869,524) at the time of signing the agreement by both governments. Second payment of US$100,000 (2021: US$1,904,856) starting on January 31, 1939 and to be paid in equal amounts every January 31 every year afterwards until the debt is fully paid.
Another part included in the economic agreement was that the Dominican and Haitian governments agreed to implement measures to prevent their nationals to enter illegally from one country to another. This was another agreement Haiti didn’t upheld, despite signing.
The second part concerned that each government agrees to deport illegal immigrants of the other nationality (illegal Haitian immigrants from the Dominican Republic and illegal Dominican immigrants in Haiti). It should be noted that at this time there wasn’t a marked difference in the economy and development of either countries and Haiti itself was a more functioning country than it’s today.
Included in the agreement is this part basically about the “healing process” of the two countries regarding the border incident of 1937. It also stipulates that beyond the date of this agreement any Haitian national can’t make any reclamations on the Dominican government or Dominican nationals relating to the border incident.
It should be noted that here it states that this agreement between the two countries of Hispaniola should be submitted to the Permanent Commission based in Washington DC, United States. Then, after going through a process, it could be ratified by the two governments of Hispaniola. Finally, the agreement documents would be exchanged with the Apostolic Nunciature (ie. the embassy of Vatican City or of the Roman Catholic Church) in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.
The agreement signed on January 31, 1938 in Washington DC, United States.

The Focus of this Massacre More than Others

It should be of note that this border incident has received much focus to this day by the international media and by organizations. The amount of victims continue to be exaggerated and outright lies are included as fact in order to create more sorrow among anyone reading about this incident. This is very telling because border incidents have occured on Hispaniola since the very beginning of Haiti as a country and the victims were the Dominican farmers who were subject to robberies and at times murders by Haitian intruders just across the border.

One of these Haitian intrusions into Dominican territory, this during the times of the Spanish, was noted in Samuel Harzad “Santo Domingo Past and Present and a Glance at Haiti” published in 1871.

Pg 429, Samuel HAZARD, “Santo Domingo Past and Present with a Glance at Haiti“; 1871.

Perhaps the greater interest in the border incident of 1937 is due because in this one the perpetrators were Dominicans and the victims Haitian in Dominican soil. It must also be considered the desire of Haiti to control the entire island, effecting many bloody armend invasions of the Dominican Republic and on multiple times threatning to massacre the entire Dominican civilian population. This sentiment is still noted in some Haitians.

Haitian author René Philoctète making a comment of the age old Haitian desire of controlling the entire island. This is despite that there are more things different from the two countries that currently are on Hispaniola than there are common things. The irony is that even if there was entire commonality among Dominicans and Haitians, how is that different from the Tainos? They inhabited the island at the time of its discovery in 1492 and despite the Tainos were all the same everywhere on the island, spoke the same language, had the same religious practices, the same music, the same traditions, etc; they had the island divided into five kingdoms, more than today!
In November 2021 the comments of a young Haitian spread like wildfire among Dominicans. Here, in Spanish, he says that since his birth his mother has repeated to him that the entire Dominican Republic belongs to Haitians. That all Haitians know that the entire island belongs to them. The plan to make the Dominican Republic disappear is in place and Haitians are further preparing. He claims that Haitians have to kickout Dominicans from the island and the Haitian takeover the Dominican Republic has to happen.

Lets not ignore that the typical Haitian is a decendant of people that arrived at Hispaniola many centuries after the Dominicans.This can be confirmed via several ways including in DNA results where among Haitians most don’t have a single drop of amerindian or Taino while the average Dominican has between 5% and 11% of amerindian. This means that the average Dominican can count on the fact that part of the European and African DNA in his admixture mixed with the amerindians in the XVI century for the most part. It also means that a part of the average Dominicans has been on Hispaniola for many years before the arrival of Christopher Columbus in 1492. By contrast, at the time of Haitian independence half of the Haitians were actually born in Africa and most of the other half was within one generation born on the island. The result is that while the average Dominican as a people was extremely old on Hispaniola by the time of the Dominican Republic’s independence, the average Haitian was extremely new on Hispaniola when Haiti became independent. In essence, the Dominican nation existed well before the Dominican Republic was created and the Dominican government had the work cut out since much of the Dominican identity formed on its own an already existed at the time of independence. The Haitian nation was created after many years of Haiti was created as an independent country and by actions from the Haitian government to create the Haitian identity. So, technically, if any of the two people should be the ones attempting to conquer the entire island for themselves are the Dominicans and not the Haitians by virtue of time on the island.
Pg 252, Samuel HAZARD, “Santo Domingo Past and Present with a Glance at Haiti;” 1871.

Most Massacres on Hispaniola have been in Haiti

A little known fact is that most massacres on Hispaniola has occured in Haiti. The perpetrators and victims were Haitians and, in fact, most victims of massacres on Hispaniola have been Haitians killed in Haiti. The following is a partial list of the massacres in Haiti during the 20th and early 21st centuries.

August 8, 1902: In Petit-Goâve, 450 Haitian civilians died in a fire which destroyed the town. General Carrié is blamed.

September 17, 1902: In Limbé, 10 disarmed Haitian peasants were killed on orders of the pro-Firmin general Laborde Corvoisier.

March 14, 1908: At least 27 Haitians mostly from the intellectual and social elites were executed and some mutilated. Among the victims was one of Haiti’s most prominent poet Massillon Coicou, later his body was decapitated and thrown into a mass grave.

July 27, 1915:  Armed supporters of President Vilbrun Sam and General Oscar Etienne’s troops slaughtered 167 Haitian members of the social and intellectual elites in Port-au-Prince.

1915 – 1920: Several thousand Haitian civilians were killed by the US Marines. On October 31, 1919 Haitian hero Charlemagne Péralte was killed by the US Marines. The total number of victims remains unknown.

1918 – 1919: Many Haitian prisoners, supposedly part of the Caco, were systematically executed by the US Marines.

June 4, 1916: In Fonds-Verrettes, the General Mizrael Codio and 10 of his men were executed by the US Marines.

January 1919: In Hinche, 19 Haitian prisoners were executed on US Captain Lavoie’s orders.

November 1919: US planes bombed and shot at the civilian population of two villages of Thomazeau and allegedly killed half of their inhabitants.

December 6, 1929: In Marchaterre, were killed at most 22 Haitians by the US Marines.

June 15-16, 1957: The Haitian army killed upwards of 3,000 poor Haitians.

1957-1986: François Duvalier was became president in 1957 and ruled Haiti until his death in 1971. During his regime, the more brutal of the two, is said to be responsible for 30,000 to 50,000 assassinations and executions.

April 26, 1963: In Port-au-Prince, several Haitian families were killed killed in their homes including elderly, children and servants. Around 100 Haitians were the victims, most members of the military, social and intellectual elites.

August 1964 “Vêpres Jérémienses Massacre”: In Jérémie, were massacred 27 Haitian men, women and children. Most were from mulatto (mixed race) families. Several families were wiped out. A four-year-old child was tortured in front of his relatives before being killed. The Haitian perpetrators extinguished their cigarettes in the eyes of crying Haitian children.

July-August 1964: Around 600 Haitians were massacred in the towns of Mapou, Thiotte, Grand-Gosier and Belle-Anse. This included men, women, children, babies and elderly Haitians. Several families were wiped out. A nine-year old child managed to escape but was later found and brought to the Presidential Palace in Port-au-Prince. There this Haitian child was killed by François Duvalier himself.

June 8, 1967: 19 Haitian officers killed in Fort-Dimanche by a firing-squad led by François Duvalier himself.

April 5, 1969 “The Cazale Massacre”: In Cazale, several dozen peasant Haitian families were massacred. This included 80 Haitians massacred or “disappeared” and 82 houses were looted and torched. Even the cattle was killed or taken away by looting soldiers. Haitian women were forced to dance and have sex with the Haitian soldiers who stayed in the village.

April 14, 1969: In Fort-Dimanche, about 30 young Haitians were executed.

July 22, 1969: Massive execution of Haitians in Ganthier. The corpses were unceremonially thrown into a mass grave.

September 21, 1977: Eight Haitians were shot by a firing squad in Morne Christophe.

January 31, 1986: In Leógane, the Haitian army massacred 100 Haitians.

February 7, 1986: In Port-au-Prince, a massacred was committed by the Haitian government, but the number of Haitian victims remains unknown. This doesn’t includes the several dozens Haitians believed to be werewolves or witches lynched by the mob in this same year.

April 26, 1986 “The Fort-Dimanche Massacre”: The Haitian army massacred at most 15 Haitians who were protesting.

July 1 – 3, 1987: In Port-au-Prince, the Haitian army massacres 22 poor Haitian workers who were on strike.

July 23, 1987 “The Jean-Rabel Massacre”: In Jean-Rabel, at most 1,042 poor Haitian peasants were massacred according to one of the killers by the name of Nicol Poitevien.

July 29, 1987: The Haitian army massacred 22 Haitians protesting.

November 29, 1987 “The La Ruelle Vaillant Massacre”: In Port-au-Price, at most 200 Haitians were massacred with machetes at a polling station. This doesn’t includes the 60 Haitians massacred in the district of Artibonite.

September 1, 1988 “The Saint-Jean Bosco Massacre”: In Port-au-Price, the Haitian government massacred 13 Haitians inside the Saint-Jean Bosco Church during a Sunday mass.

March 12, 1990 “The Piatre Massacre”: Near Saint-Marc, a massacre of 11 Haitian peasants took place.

January 7, 1991 c: In Port-au-Prince, an unidentified number of Haitians were massacred, though some sources said it was 75.

January 17, 1991: In Gervais, upwards of 12 Haitian peasants were massacred. In addition, 494 houses belonging to Haitian families were set on fire.

October 1, 1994 – September 14, 1994 “Colonel Raoul Cédras Regime”: The Haitian government massacred between 10,000 to 30,000 Haitians (depending on the source).

September 30 – October 1, 1991: The Haitian army massacred at least 1,000 Haitians, many were members of a pro-democracy group. This doesn’t includes those Haitians affected the Haitian army randomly firing at Haitian bystanders and homes (many of those homes received indiscriminately thrown grenades which exploded. Around 30 to 40 Haitians were the massacred in this case.

October 1 – 2, 1991: In Port-au-Prince, in the neighborhood of Martissant to be exact, 7 Haitians were massacred by the Haitian army. This doesn’t include the 30 Haitians massacred in the neighborhood Cité Soleil by the Haitian army on October 2.

December 27, 1993: In Port-au-Prince, a total of 37 Haitians were massacred along with over 1,000 Haitian homes set on fire by FRAPH. The Haitians that wanted to flee from their burning homes were prevented by the FRAPH, ensuring they were burned to death.

February 2 – 3, 1994 “Carrefour Vincent Massacre”: The 7 Haitian members of a pro-democracy group were massacred by the Haitian army while they tried to escape from their house attacked with machine guns.

April 22, 1994 “Raboteau Massacre”: In Gonaives, the Haitian army working in a team with FRAPH massacred 14 Haitians.

May 28, 1999: In Port-au-Prince, 11 Haitians were massacred while lying down and with their hands tied by the Haitian National Police.

February 11, 2004 “La Scierie Massacre”: In Saint-Marc, an informal Haitian government group massacred 50 Haitians. This includes two young Haitians by the names Jean-Baptiste Kénol and Joseph Leroy were thrown alive into a burning building. This doesn’t includes the rape in a Haitian National Police station of the two young Haitian women known as Anne and Kétia, respectively, after they witnessed the killing of their husbands.

Once again. these are only the massacres during the 20th and early 21st centuries in the country of Hispaniola that has been the scene of the most in number of massacres and the most number of Haitian victims. There are many more massacres in the XIX century and Haiti leads Hispaniola by a long shot in numbers of the massacres and the Haitian victims (except the Dominican victims during the “Campaign of the East” and the multiple Haitian invasions of the Dominican Republic – see here, here, here and here; these are only a small example although the victims were Dominicans and the perpetrators Haitians, so for many this probably means nothing).


As has been demonstrated, many aspects of the border incidents of 1937 were exposed. In addition, other aspects have been brought to light such as the intended exaggerbation of Haitian victims, the lack of finding Haitian remains despite the remains of other much older people have been found and that the technology has advanced that the time of the remains can be identified, the inclusion of lies into the description of the border incident and the blatant double standards. Furthermore, it has been noted how a much greater attention is made towards this event (supposedly because the perpetrators were Dominicans and the victims Haitians) while remaining quiet (basically unknown outside Haiti) the many more Haitians that have been massacred in Haiti and by the Haitian government after that time.

We finish by asking the following rhetorical questions.

Why are there no organizations holding a yearly events to commemorate the Haitian victims of the multiple massacres that took place in Haiti by Haitian perpetrators?

Why no published papers, books, etc in the United States, American organizations and/or by American universities concerning these horrible events in Haiti, despite the Haitian victims outnumber by a long shot?

Perhaps is it because the perpatrators are not Dominicans? Does it makes it hard to further justify anti-Dominican attitudes and in effect supporting the elimination of the Dominican Republic?

Perhaps while the Haitian massacres took place on Hispaniola, is the lack of attention because they didn’t occur in the Dominican Republic?

Perhaps the lives of the Haitian victims of these massacres don’t merit attention despite they are most Haitians killed in massacres during the XX and XXI centuries?