Haitian American Food

Appears in

Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America

Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America

By Andrew F. Smith

Published 2004

  • About
During Haiti’s Revolution of 1791 to 1804, the first trickle of refugees—slaves, free people of color, and colonists—left the island of Hispaniola and began to settle in New Orleans, New York, Philadelphia, Boston, Norfolk, and Charleston. Since the colony of Saint-Domingue—the eighteenth century’s “pearl of the Antilles”—proclaimed its independence in 1804, Haiti has suffered from chronic political and economic instability, which has spurred three significant waves of immigration. Haiti is now the largest source of Afro-Caribbean immigrants to the United States. The most sizeable populations of Haitian American immigrants are found in New York City, Miami, and Boston, each of which now has more Haitian inhabitants than live in Haiti’s second largest city of Cap Haitien.