Originally, Haiti (means high land or mountain country) was the richest and most important of the French Colonies.

Pictured below is an unusual silver coin bowl spoon from Haiti

haiti coin spoon 20 centimes
note: there is a US quarter under the bowl to show relative size
This spoon has a 20 centime (20 cents) silver coin bowl dated 1882 which was the second year these coins were made.

The finial is a cutout of  the national coat of arms from a second coin

Haiti does not have a very good reputation at this time.
 Most of us think of it as being extremely poor with a large population.
The fact that they speak French also is a negative.

However, this was not always the case.

An uprising of the imported slaves under the leadership of Toussaint L' Overture
was successful in driving out the French. After a 20 year struggle, Haiti became the
first independent black country in the world in 1803.

 King Christophe created a new monetary unit based upon the 'gourd'.
In typical corrupt Haiti style, he confiscated all the gourds and then required that all
the natives sell him their coffee in exchange for gourds. He then exported the coffee
to Europe in exchange for hard currency.

The new silver coinage was minted in Paris starting in 1881. This silver coinage did not
last long and by 1900 the currency of Haiti was paper, nickel and copper which were
not acceptable to any other country.

The coat of arms  shows draped flags, which are located before a palm tree and cannons on a green lawn. On the lawn various items are found, such as a drum, a bugle, long guns, and ship anchors. Above the palm tree, there is a Phrygian cap placed as a symbol of freedom. On the lawn between the drum and the ribbon there were supposed to be two pieces of chain with a broken link symbolizing the broken chain of slavery. Above the palm are the French words  "liberte equalite fraternite"

haiti spoon tortoise

A small unusual hand made spoon featuring an 1894 dime size 835 purity silver coin bowl

The center of the handle has a silver plaque with a woman carrying a basket on her head

The handle is made from tortoise shell (unusual)

Donated to the Spoon museum by Jean Mangrum  and Laurel Moon in honor of Bertha Schmitt
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