Julien Raimond

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Julien Raimond (1744-1801) was an indigo planter in Saint-Domingue. He was born a free man of color, the son of a French colonist and the mulatto daughter of a planter, in the the South of the colony. Raimond owned over 100 slaves by the 1780s. But he is most famous for challenging the French government to reform racially discrimatory laws in Saint-Domingue. He moved to France in the mid 1780s and pursued this question in person at the French Colonial Ministry.A Mulatto Commissioner to Saint-Domingue in 1796, he served along with Léger Félicité Sonthonax and Philippe Rose Roume de Saint-Laurent.

Working with Vincent Ogé, Henri Grégoire and the Society of the Friends of the Blacks, Raimond succeeded in making the question of racial equality into the leading colonial question before the French National Assembly in 1790 and 1791. On May 15, 1791, the French legistlature passed racial reforms urged by Raimond giving wealthy free-born men of color the right to vote in the colonies. But white colonists' resistance to this change provoked civil war in Saint-Domingue.