On This Day in History, August 14

In 1791, Dutty Boukman presided over a ceremony at Bois Caïman in Haiti, then still known as Saint-Domingue, in the role of Vodou houngan, or priest. The ceremony predicted that those enslaved gathered for the ceremony would rise against their masters, even naming their leaders. Shortly after, thousands of plantations would be destroyed and the slave owners killed. This revolt is now known as the Haitian Revolution.

In 1914, the French Army began their second engagement against the Germans in the First World War at the Battle of Lorraine. Following the invasion of Belgium, which drew the United Kingdom into the war. The battle, part of the Battle of the Frontiers, was the primary engagement on the Western Front of the war, which would end with a German victory that September.

In 2015, the Embassy of the United States in Havana, Cuba, was officially reopened in ceremony, and the flag that had been lowered decades ago was raised and flown again. The embassy was first closed in 1961 by President Eisenhower following the Cuban Revolution and Castro’s rise to power. In 1977, Castro and President Carter signed an agreement to allow the usage of the embassy under specific conditions.

A Notable Birth

1586 – William Hutchinson (d. 1641) was a British merchant and judge who immigrated to Massachusetts with his family. After his wife became involved in a theological controversy, they moved to the newly formed colony of Rhode Island.

A Notable Death

1988 – Enzo Ferrari (b. 1898) was an Italian racecar driver who went on to found his own car manufacturing company, Ferrari, in part due to the withdrawal of support from other companies.

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