The Coffee Planter of Saint Domingo



The Coffee Planter of Saint Domingo

Author: Laborie, P. J

Place of Publication: London
Publisher: Printed for T. Cadell & W. Davies

Publication Date: M.DCC.XCVIII. [1798]
Physical Description: xii, 198, 145, [5] p., 22 leaves of plates (some folded): ill., 22 cm. (8vo)

The hills that rose above the plains of Saint Domingue provided convenient sites for the layered terraces on which coffee beans could be grown. A significant number of the colony’s coffee plantations were owned and managed by people of color. Coffee’s importance to the French colonial economy grew dramatically in the period after the Seven Years' War (1756-63). In this book published in 1798, as the British occupation of the western and southern provinces of Saint Domingue was coming to an end, a white coffee planter named P. J. Laborie offered to share his expertise for the benefit of his British counterparts in Jamaica. Laborie’s work was a very important one to describe the cultivation of coffee in Saint Domingue before 1789. In the 22 engraved plates one can see the machinery used to grind and extract the coffee beans, then highly coveted in Great Britain’s coffee houses. One can also see the backbreaking work involved in order to produce the high yields of beans given in the tables contained within the volume. This work is invaluable for any commercial study of the coffee industry in the French or British colonial West Indies. The appendix provides rare details about the British occupied zone during the revolution.

Notes: E798 .L123c