Grad student uncovers Haitian founding document

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

DURHAM, N.C. (AP) - A Duke University graduate student has found what historians think is the only surviving printed copy of Haiti's Declaration of Independence.

The University said Thursday that 26-year-old history student Julia Gaffield discovered the yellowing document in February while combing through papers in Great Britain's National Archives in London.

Haiti's revolutionary leaders issued the declaration on Jan. 1, 1804, after they fought to overthrow French colonial rule and slavery, creating the world's first black republic.

Haiti's ambassador to the U.S, Raymond Joseph, said in an interview with the Associated Press that if it is the only remaining copy, the discovery would provide a boost to his country at a desperate time.

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