Môle-Saint-Nicolas

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Môle-Saint-Nicolas
Mòlsennikola or Omòl
Môle-Saint-Nicolas is located in Haiti
Môle-Saint-Nicolas
Môle-Saint-Nicolas
Location in Haiti
Coordinates: 19°48′0″N 73°23′0″W / 19.80000°N 73.38333°W / 19.80000; -73.38333
Country Flag of Haiti.svg Haiti
Department Nord-Ouest
Arrondissement Môle-Saint-Nicolas

Môle-Saint-Nicolas (Mòlsennikola or Omòl in Haitian Creole) is a town on the north-western coast of Haiti. It is the chief town of the Môle-Saint-Nicolas Arrondissement in the department of Nord-Ouest. Christopher Columbus' first voyage to the Americas landed at the site of what is now Môle-Saint-Nicolas on December 6, 1492. The town received its present name after France gained control of the western part of Hispaniola in 1697.

Môle-Saint-Nicolas has a population of about 4,000 people, with another 20,000 spread throughout the rural areas nearby. In October 2007 it received its first cellular phone telecommunications capability with the construction of the Digicel network tower above the town. Before the arrival of Digicel, the only means of telecommunication in the town was a TELECO station that was only occasionally operational. The road network of Haiti is in general decrepit, with roads in the north-west being no exception. However, in Mole itself, the roads are passable in a sturdy vehicle. There is a dirt airstrip to the north of the town which is serviced by two airlines: Mission Aviation Fellowship and Sunrise Airways. The town has running water from a run-of-river channel constructed in the 1970s, which feeds a reservoir above the town and is distributed via PVC pipes to spigots throughout the town. A medical clinic in the town has been staffed by Slovakian volunteer doctors from a private university, since the end of 2006.

Vestiges of colonial forts can be found in several locations: Batteries de Vallières, Fort Georges, Saint-Charles, La Poudrière, Le Fort Allemand, Les Ramparts. Ruine Poudrière is an old magazine built sometime in the 1750s.

Local fishing is a major industry in this part of the country. The production and distribution of wood charcoal is another major industry of the local people. There is a port for transporting charcoal to larger cities that utilizes wooden sailing vessels to transport the major fuel for cooking in Haiti. Charcoal production has devastated the original forest that once covered this area. The landscape surrounding Mole looks more like the high desert of Arizona than a lush tropical island that was first described to Europeans by Christopher Columbus.

Coordinates: 19°48′N 73°23′W / 19.800°N 73.383°W / 19.800; -73.383