François Capois, his last name Capois La Mort, specifically La Mort means the death. François was born a slave in Port-de-Paix Haiti. He began active duty in the military in 1793 after meeting Toussaint L'Ouverture at Port-de-Paix. From then on his position in the army rose, starting as the lieutenant, then captain of the 3rd battalion. He was well respected for his exceptional bravery and his courage at the "Bataille de Vertières," because of François's fierceness the General Viscount of Rochambeau, Commander of Napoleon's Army at Saint Domingue, called his men to stop firing to give François Capois accolades.
On November 18, 1803, Jean-Jacques Dessalines gave François Capois orders to capture a fort on a hill. François attempted three times with a demi-brigade to overpower the French army, but the French army forced him and his troops down to the bottom of the hill. François didn't take the defeat graciously, instead, he hopped on his horse pushed up a fourth time, commanding his men to follow him by chanting, "Forward! forward!" As François was making his way uphill, the French hit his horse with a cannon ball causing him to fall, but that didn't stop François who took his sword, stood up and placed himself again at the head of his Haitian soldiers and again proceeded to shout: "Forward! forward!" The French responded by shooting his hat off that was decorated with plumes as a warning sign. François responded by upping the ante. François positioned himself to be easily targeted for death by any head wound but that didn't deter him, again François drew his sword as a signal to proceed with the battle. The French General Rochambeau cried out: "Bravo! bravo! bravo!" Then asked François to halt firing, a French Officer mounted on his horse and darted towards the direction of François to speak with him. With all sincerity and excitement, the Officer yelled, "General Rochambeau sends compliments to the General who has just covered himself with such glory." After making that bold statement, he saluted the Haitian army to then return to his spot to pursue fighting. The following morning, a French Officer accompanied by his companions, journeyed to the Haitian army's headquarters with a similar black horse to deliver it to the Haitian warriors. The Officer stated: "Captain-General Rochambeau offers this horse as a mark of admiration to the Black Achilles, to replace his that the French Army regrets having killed." Today in Haiti, many songs are created in François Capois La Mort's memory to show respect and honor of his fearlessness.
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