This essay argues that George Boyer Vashon’s epic poem, “Vincent Ogé” (1854), reframes the Haitian Revolution by aligning two moments of imminent revolution—Saint-Domingue in the late eighteenth century and the United States in the mid-nineteenth century—to suggest the free black people of the United States might activate the volcanic latency of racial discontent in their country just as Ogé had in his. At the same time, Vashon’s revision of John Greenleaf Whittier’s poem “Toussaint L’Ouverture” (1833) offsets the way in which Louverture’s name had become overburdened within the transatlantic antislavery discourse of the mid-nineteenth century. In doing so, “Vincent Ogé” shifts attention from the singular heroism of Louverture to the plurality of contributors that shaped the long history of the Haitian Revolution.

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