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Cuba and the Cubans 





Author of "Mis Buenos Tiempos," "Los Estados Unidos, 
" Impresiones de Viaje," Etc., Etc. Member of the Bar 
of Cuba. Provincial Ex-Deputy. Member of the 
Executive Committee of the Cuban Autono- 
mist Party, Etc. 







. 7290 




■896 SQC 

Copyright 1896 

The Levytype Company 






Digitized by the Internet Archive 
in 2013 


At a time when the condition of Cuba and its 
people has been forced upon the attention of the 
civilized world by another sanguinary contest 
between Spain and its Great Antillan colony, there 
is no need of an apology for the appearance of the 
present work. 

The American people, especially, have an abiding- 
interest in Cuba, not alone as a matter of sentiment, 
but by reason of extensive commercial relations with 
the island and of the important economic facts 
resulting from those relations; the condition ot 
Cuba and the Cubans largely concerns us, and a 
disturbance of those conditions affects our material 
interests in many ways. Since the beginning of 
1895 the prolonged contention between the Cuban 
colonists and the mother country, which in the past 
has resulted in numerous insurrections and in a 
devastating civil war of ten years' duration, has 
again been taken out of the domain of parliamentary 
discussion by a resort to force. The political agita- 
tion for administrative reforms and a due measure 
of self government which has constantly and per- 
sistently been maintained by the progressive par- 
ties among the Cuban people, especially since the 


failure of the Spanish government to develope the 
reforms agreed upon by the Compromise of 1878, 
lias again been replaced by an insurrectionary 
movement that has spread over the greater part of 
the island of Cuba. Again the Cuban question, 
turgid with the wrongs of centuries, distorted by 
social misconceptions and by political chicanery, an 
anachronism at the close of the 19th century, is 
illuminated by the torch of war. 

But the gleam of battle fire illuminates an historic 
subject in but a garish and imperfect light. Its 
various phases are brought out in gross relief against 
a sombre background and such presentations are 
necessarily misleading in their nature. In the midst 
of the confusion and turmoil incident to a clash of 
arms, statements of fact, discussions of opinion and 
contentions of argument inevitably partake of the 
heat of the conflict and are apt to be over-colored by 
passion or prejudice. Affected by these conditions, 
the press and the tribune are alike prone to give ex- 
pression to the rancors of the conflict, rather than 
the calmly ascertained causes which underlie and 
have produced it ; the real import of those causes is 
apt to be obscured by the bitterness of partisanship 
and the far-reaching significance of their effects 
hidden in the smoke of battle. 

To afford a true light under such circumstances 
there is need of a competent and acknowledged 


authority, whose position is conceded and whose 
standpoint is fully recognized; an authority un- 
affected by the rancors of the moment, actuated by 
logical and well-determined motives and influenced 
by considerations apart from present exigencies. 
Such a light is afforded by the volume before us. 

It renders accessible to English readers Raimundo 
Cabrera's Cuba y sus jueces. That work, as will be 
found noted in its admirable prologue by Rafael 
Montoro, attracted universal attention throughout 
the Spanish-speaking world at the time of its first 
publication in 1887. Since then it has gone through 
eight editions in the Spanish, and has been accepted 
as a faithful reflex of public opinion among the 
liberal thinkers not only of Cuba, but of the mother 
country as well. The work affords the most compre- 
hensive and thorough statement of the Cuban ques- 
tion that has thus far emanated from the press ; it 
lias stood the test of criticism and review by all 
parties in Cuba and in Spain, and remains an un- 
questioned and unimpeached authority on the sub- 
ject of Cuba and the Cubans. 

The idea of presenting this work to the English 
speaking public had been conceived by the present 
editor some years ago, when, as publisher of the 
seventh Spanish edition, he became minutely com 
versant with its contents. The author's permission 
to translate the work was then obtained with that 


end in view, and now, with the growing interest 
of the American people in the struggle between 
Spain and its rebellious colonists, an English 
translation of this standard work will especially 
commend itself. In view of the existing situation 
of affairs, the editor has deemed it proper to confine 
the translation to the text as it was published in the 
Spanish edition of 1891, which was the seventh of 
the series and the last which received the revision 
of the author, he having then augmented his pre- 
vious work with numerous notes and supplemented 
it with appendices and illustrations. A brief sum- 
mary of descriptive and historical data, which the 
author, writing for a Spanish and particularly a 
Cuban public, naturally regarded as unnecessary, 
has been added to this translation by the editor, and 
the illustrations of the original work have been in- 
creased by a number of photographic views and a 
map of the island and its surroundings. 

Señor Cabrera has dealt with his subject-matter 
from the vantage ground of an acknowledged leader- 
ship of the Autonomist part}' of Cuba. His state- 
ments may therefore be regarded as an expression 
of that element of the Cuban people whose hopes 
of the future of their country have been based on 
the belief that their aspirations could be realized 
through an effective system of Autonomy, and who 
looked forward to achieving their political aims by 

editor's preface. íx 

constitutional agitation,, rather than by the possibly 
shorter but immeasurably more costly method of a 
resort to arms. The earnest and thoughtful leaders 
of the Autonomists based their contention for a 
peaceful propaganda of the reform movement upon 
the fact that socio-political problems which, a gene- 
ration ago, seemed impossible of determination ex- 
cept by force, were now open for solution by appeals 
to justice and to reason; that the intelligence and 
education upon which they relied were being rapidly 
disseminated by the spread of commerce and of in- 
dustry; that the spirit of the times was making 
strongly for their cause and that the progress of 
modern thought and enlightenment, slow though it 
was in making an impress on Spanish policy, might 
still with confidence be left to work its way in Cuba, 
as it had worked and was yet working throughout 
the civilized world. Cabrera's book indeed, as voic- 
ing the demands of the Cuban people for reforms 
which Spain has constantly postponed or absolutely 
refused, has commanded the recognition and respect 
of the advanced rank of Spanish statesmen. 

The original publication of this work in the 
Spanish, as already noted, marked an era in the agi- 
tation for Cuban Home Rule. It was put forth, 
as is indicated by Montoro in his Prologue, and by 
the author in his introductory chapter, as a refuta- 
tion of statements by a Peninsular writer, published 

x editor's preface. 

in a book entitled " Cuba y su gente" (Cuba and its 
People), and hence proceeds upon a plan of disserta- 
tion which Cabrera found forced upon him. But the 
hitter's work is much more than a polemic; it takes a 
wider sweep and presents a broad and philosophic 
statement of its subject. With scholarly insight and 
thorough analysis, Cabrera traces the existing social, 
political, and economic condition of Cuba and the Cu- 
bans with a facile pen, in brief but comprehensive 
outlines and in a lucid and trenchant style. He 
elucidates the needs and aspirations of the Cuban 
people as evinced by that portion of the community 
of which Cabrera himself is a typical representative, 
the thoughtful, conservative and substantial ele- 
ments of society, which form the true basis of the 
social structure. It was these elements that com- 
posed the Autonomist party of Cuba, which sought, 
through every possible peaceful effort, to move the 
Home Government to a recognition of the needs of 
the times, of the demands of justice, and of the dic- 
tates of an enlightened self-interest, and it is these 
elements which must form in Cuba, as in all civilized 
societies, the foundation whereon the lasting recon- 
struction of the community must eventually be 

Louts Edward Levy. 

Philadelphia, February, 1896. 


Editor's Preface . . . . v 

Prologue . . . . . . . .17 


Explanatory Introduction — The Port of Ha- 
vana—The Harbor Officials — Custom House 
Examinations — Streets of the City — Archi- 
tectural Peculiarities — Characteristics of 
the City Crowds — The Negroes and the 
Chinese— The "Section of Hygiene" — Other 
Features . . . . . .29 


Havana Inns and Hostelries — Low Cost of Liv- 
ing — The Royal Lottery — The Country 
Monopolized and Exploited — Cuban Sacri- 


The Press of Cuba — Its Genesis — The Two 
Classes of the Community — Their Respective 
Aims and Ideals — The Two Classes of Jour- 

xíí table of contents. 

nals — History of Cuban Journalism — Its 
Pains, Penalties and Rewards — The Press 
Laws — Scientific and other Periodicals . 43 


Social and Industrial Conditions — Sugar and 
Cattle Raising — Consequences of Misgovern- 
ment — The Criminal Classes — Penal Sta- 
tistics ........ 59 


Literary Activity in Cuba— Public and Private 
Libraries — Spread of Intelligence — Cuban 
as Distinguished from Spanish Literature — 
Cuban Authors and their Works . . .75 


Cuban Literature — Its Beginnings and Devel- 
opment — Cuban Poets and Historians — Activ- 
ity in the Fields of Science, Art and General 
Literature — Cuban Painters and Composers . 85 


Political Conditions — The Opposing Parties 

and their hlstory period of conspiracies 

— Futile Hopes of Reform — The Ten Years' 
Struggle — The Compromise of Zanjón — The 
Autonomist Party — Its Platform — The Con- 
servative or Spanish Party — Broken Prom- 
ises of the Government . . . . .119 



Cuba, Its Political, Ecclesiastical and Juridical 
Divisions— The Moral Status of the People — 
The Social Evil — Its Exploitation by the 
Government — Purity of the Cuban People — 
The Status of Education — Historical Review 
of the System of Instruction — Government 
Neglect of Education — Free Schools, Semi- 
naries and Colleges Privately Instituted 
and Conducted . . . . , .137 


The Public Offices — Chaotic Condition of the 
Administrative System — Evil Effects of Cen- 
tralization — Dishonest Officials— Official 
Salaries in Cuba . .... . . 161 


The Judicial System — Its Demoralization — Ex- 
clusion of Cubans from the Judiciary 7 — The 
Various Judicial Offices — Their General 
Corruption — The Administration of Justice 
a Source of Income to the State . . .169 


Local Government in Cuba — Its Past and 
Present — The Municipalities and Their 
Organization — Autocratic Administration — 
The Local Government Law of 1859 — The 
Restricted Franchise — Restricted Powers of 

xvi table of contents. 

Circular From the Civil Government of Ha- 
vana Concerning the Suppression of High- 
way Robbery ....... 305 


References Concerning the Illustrations in- 
cluded in the Text ..... 309 


General Descriptive and Historical Review 
of the Island of Cuba ..... 373 



The extraordinary success attained by the first 
edition of " Cuba y Sus Jueces " (Cuba and its 
Critics) has afforded ample proof of the great merit 
of the work and of its eminent opportuneness. As 
regards the former, it is fully attested by the warm 
eulogies accorded the work by the entire liberal 
Press of Cuba, by the evident alarm manifested in 
the reactionary organs and by the unusual gladness 
with which the good people of Cuba, laying aside 
for the time their various concerns, have sought, 
almost unanimously, a grateful solace in the pages 
of this fascinating and patriotic book. On the 
other hand, no more thorough demonstration of 
its fitness for the occasion could be possible than 
the fact that this book, for some days after its 
appearance, completely monopolized the attention 
of the public, the discussion of its contents replac- 
ing all other topics of current interest, not only in 
newspaper polemics but also in the conversation 
and spontaneous comments of the people. 

The present prologue cannot, therefore, be like 
ordinary compositions of this class. Its object 



cannot be the presentation to the public of a work 
already celebrated, nor the introduction of an au- 
thor already so distinguished ; but it appears to me 
desirable, for various reasons, to record with reference 
to the latter a few circumstances which enhance 
our estimate of the originality as well of the noble 
purpose of his work. 

It will be well, however, that we speak with re- 
serve, inasmuch as it is in the nature of things 
political that the generous plaudits of a fair and 
impartial public are counteracted, or more properly 
speaking, are sought to be counteracted, by the 
coarse attacks of disappointed adversaries. These 
attacks attest the merits of the book, and afford 
sufficient proof even were there no other evidence. 

No one attains to moral or intellectual authority, 
least of all, certainly, in the domain of politics, 
without incurring many a secret hate and lasting 
antipathy, errors which are gradually corrected or 
chimerical ambitions which are finally overcome in 
the path of the victor. 

Looking forward, then, as one may, to this inevit- 
able fate of all who are worthy and more especially of 
all who struggle, I would remark that Señor Cabrera 
affords in the story of his own life the best commen- 
tary on his work. A son of the soil, he owes to his 
own efforts, notwithstanding his youth, all that he 
has acquired, position, wealth and fame. To those 


who persist in accusing the Cuban of being indolent 
or apathetic, of lacking enterprise, activity or per- 
severance, Cabrera's life affords an answer more elo- 
quent even than his interesting book. Well may so 
creditable a production receive the testimony of the 
author of this prologue, united as he is with Cabrera 
by the ties of an old friendship, dating back to the 
sweet years of childhood and the ineffaceable mem- 
ories of school. Cabrera is one of the class of self- 
made men, the true warrant of the culture and the 
progress of all new countries, where the individual 
has all the task of accomplishing results, and has 
the impulse to their accomplishment. The first, 
because a new social organism precludes the exist- 
ence of classes privileged by law or custom, and of 
traditional institutions which, in communities of 
an extended history, appear as an expression of 
that history, and partake with the individual, in 
priority even to the latter, in the work of social 
development. The second, the impulse to action, 
inasmuch as it is the characteristic of immigrants 
and their immediate descendants in new communi- 
ties, to which they are drawn by a spirit of adven- 
ture and by a yearning for liberty and an eagerness 
for fortune, to repel all social ingredients and all 
constraints of government which remind them of 
their circumstances in the old country, where the 
feeling of restraint and ill-condition had finally 


brought them to dare all the risks of a new life, in 
a distant land and under unknown circumstances. 

The true cause of the relative backwardness of 
Spanish America and of the enormous difficulties 
with which it had to contend in establishing on a 
solid basis its political and economic organization,, 
cannot, in the opinion of the highest authorities, 
be other than the error committed by our ancestors 
in disregarding the supreme necessity, felt by every 
colony and by every colonist, of individual and 
social expansion, a principle which, on the contrary 
has been fully recognized in Anglo-Saxon America, 
where such admirable progress has been attained. 

Gervinus has compared in the classic pages of his 
famous introduction to the History of the Nineteenth 
Century, the different spirit to which the policies of 
the British and Spanish colonizations have respect- 
ively responded, proving how far superior in this 
respect was always the former over the latter. The 
English colonist, upon his departure for new terri- 
tories, leaves behind him the the historic institu- 
tions, social complications and the rigid prescrip- 
tions and limitations which are the product of for- 
mer centuries. The Spaniard, on the other hand, 
enamoured of an impossible uniformity, has striven 
to reproduce in newly discovered territories, with all 
its characteristic elements, the same organization as 
that which the stormy march of events had created in 


the mother country. He has tried to establish, as 
Leroy Beaulieu points out, "old societies in new 
countries," without spontaneity or life of their own; 
an evil which Merivale found to be the root of all 
the misfortunes that afflict Spanish America, as also 
of the turbulent uprisings that finally culminated 
in its separation from the common nationality. 

This erroneous idea of assimilation still holds 
sway and one of its most natural and lamentable 
results is the deplorable antagonism that never 
ceases in Spanish colonies to divide into hostile camps 
the Europeans and the Americans. Under the shadow 
of a suspicious and jealous tutelage which condemns 
as calamitious and criminal every idea of expan- 
sion, always so necessary in new societies, the proud 
and dominating spirit of those who assert them- 
selves as the true representatives of the national in- 
terest, violently bursts forth, stirring up among the 
settlers of metropolitan origin the most cruel enmity 
against the natives of the country in which they 

Thus becomes developed that psychological con- 
dition, described in so masterly a manner by John 
Stuart Mill in the suggestive lines which serve as 
fitting epigram to this work, and which if ever, 
in a restricted sense, applicable to English coloniza- 
tion, could, unfortunately, always be applied with 
more or less positiveness to the Spanish colonial 


system. It was logical that such a disposition in the 
dominant element should give rise to corresponding 
protests and reproaches from the humiliated and 
oppressed colonists. Hence the antagonism of which 
I speak, with all its odious and deadly fierceness, 
followed by a procession of horrors, violence and 
public calamities which constitute one of the saddest 
episodes of modern history ! In con- 
tinental America these are now passing, with the 
sad memory of their origin. An eloquent lesson, 
indeed, and one that is not appreciated. 

In Cuba and Porto Rico, with the continuance of 
its causes, that antagonism still persists, engendering 
nearly all the dangers and difficulties which those 
countries encounter in the rough pathway of their 
civilizing evolution. And if this antagonism be the 
greatest evil which they suffer it is well that all 
true lovers of the public weal should battle to correct 
the errors which false prejudices or absurd animosi- 
ties are constantly fomenting. 

A free-lance pamphlet into which the insolent 
pen of an unjust foreigner packed all kinds of errors 
and insults against this unfortunate country, serv- 
ing thus as the mouthpiece of those who to-day 
symbolize the spirit of domination among us, has 
afforded the motive for this judicious and striking 
reply of Mr. Cabrera. We wish it were read by 
both elements of the communitv with absolute cool- 


ness of judgment. The dominating classes might 
comprehend their injustice and thoughtlessness; the 
others would see that right upholds them, and 
that good discipline, union and perseverance con- 
stitute the most efficacious remedy for the evils they 

The mature reflection to which these pages in- 
vite will indicate primarily that there exists in Cuba 
a people endowed with all the qualities and elements 
necessary to attain a high degree of civilization and 
prosperity, if it can only, overcome the fearful crisis 
which now agitates it. 

In a profound and notably just criticism of this 
book, Mr. Enrique José Varona has pointed out, 
with his usual mastery, this principal factor of the 
Cuban problem. 

"The culminating subject of this book," says this 
distinguished thinker, "because it is developed from 
the reality of things, is that the old European race 
which conquered and repeopled Cuba, has here pro- 
duced an ethnological variety well adapted for its 
new physical conditions, and capable of a well 
ordered and progressive social life; for it has been 
fruitful and has demonstrated a high degree of 
mental aptitude, exceptional activity and a persist- 
ent spirit of enterprise. But as though living under 
the weight of the inexorable fatality conceived by 
the ancients, whatever has been due to its historical 


antecedents, whatever of political ties and institu- 
tions it brought from the old European soil, seems 
to have arisen in its pathway as an insurmountable 
obstacle, or bound up its limbs with unyielding 
bonds. Favored by nature on every side, it has 
gathered only a harvest of evils from its social and 
political organization." — Revista Cubana, Septem- 
ber, 1887. 

The first part of Mr. Verona's observation is 
exceedingly important, as it establishes, in our 
judgment, the just title of the Cuban people to con- 
sider themselves as a people, with perfect right to 
colonial autonomy. It furthermore solves one of 
the most interesting of the problems which press 
upon the colonists to-day, viz.: that of the adapta- 
bility and capacity for indefinite reproduction of the 
white race in the torrid zone, which, up to the 
present time, have been considered negatively by 
most writers, with discouraging and pessimistic 
conclusions, forgetting possibly that races may 
change according to their environment. The iso- 
thermic lines so precisely traced by I. Guyot in the 
map which accompanies his remarkable Leltres sur 
la Politique Coloniale, appeared to be definitive only 
a short time ago. It is true that in the works of 
Rochard, Bordier and of Guyot himself, an excep- 
tion is noted in favor of the Spaniards and Portu- 
guese, as more apt in establishing themselves and 


multiplying in our zone. True it is also that the 
physical conditions of our beautiful island, and its 
topographical peculiarities, render it manifestly 
better adapted than any other tropical country for 
the acclimatization of the South-European. The 
observation of Verona is above all decisive as 
regards the complete tracing out of the problem, 
indicating as it does the possibility of ethnological 
varieties, whose adaptability will in Cuba exceed all 
our hopes, if not disturbed in their development by 
monstrous political conditions, for whose reform 
we must resolutely struggle. 

We need not deprecate these hopes as being 
exaggerated, if we consider how vast is the field 
which presents itself, even in our uninhabited 
domain, not alone for the development of the exist- 
ing population, but to increasing numbers of new 
immigrants and their descendants. According to 
the highest estimates there are in Cuba but 12.84 in- 
habitants to the square kilometre. Calculate now the 
time and the effort necessary for our community to 
reach even a medium density of population, such as 
is considered in other countries as but a partial 
occupancy of the soil. Development, it is main- 
tained, can follow only upon our regeneration, and 
this is impossible so long as the conditions to which 
we are subjected are not essentially reformed. 

But, can these conditions possibly be reformed? 


Is it permissible to hope for better days when, 
to quote the phrase of a Spanish statesman, 
"the reign of justice in Cuba shall begin?" This 
is the crucial point of the question. It is certainly 
not necessary for the author of this prologue to state 
that he does not figure among the pessimists. He may 
permit himself to believe, without being accused of 
lack of modesty, that this fact is well known by all 
who are acquainted with the political affairs of the 
country. It is not to be denied, however, that the 
difficulties are most grave. But whatever solution 
the course of time may afford this fateful problem, 
we may feel sure of this, that we cannot obtain 
peace of mind nor lasting tranquillity, neither pros- 
perity nor true civilization, so long as we do not 
put an end to the enmity between the two elements 
of our white population. On harmony depends our 
welfare as surely as that discord breeds all our evils 
and dangers. Certain it is that this happy union will 
not be accomplished until the day when a full meas- 
ure of self-government, founded on liberty and justice, 
render impossible at once the daring imposition of 
the powers that be and the just resentment of the 
oppressed victims. Then, and then only, will Cuba 
be saved for herself and for Spain. 

Rafael Montoro. 

September 10, 1887. 

" If there be a fact to which all experience testi- 
fies, it is that when a country holds another in 
subjection, the individuals of tht, ruling people 
who resort to the foreign country to make their 
fortunes, are of all others those who most need 
to be held under powerful restraint. They are 
always one of the chief difficulties of the govern- 
ment. Armed with the prestige and filled with the 
scornful overbearingness of the conquering nation, 
they have the feelings inspired by absolute power, 
without its sense of responsibility * * * * The 
utmost efforts of the public authorities are not 
enough for the effectual protection of the weak 
against the strong, and of all the strong, the Euro- 
pean settlers are the strongest. * * * * They 
think the people of the country mere dirt under 
their feet; it seems to them monstrous that any 
rights of the natives should stand in the way of 
their smallest pretensions ; the simplest act of 
protection to the inhabitants against any act of 
power on their part which they may consider 
useful to their commercial objects, they denounce, 
and sincerely regard as an injury. * * * * 
The Government, itself free from this spirit, is 
never able sufficiently to keep it down in the young 
and raw even of its own civil and military offi- 
cers, over whom it has so much more control than 
over the independent residents. ," 


(On "Representative Government," Chapter XVIII.) 



No. 3. Morro Castle. Entrance to the Port of Havana. 

Explanatory Introduction— The Port of Havana— The Harbor 
Officials— Custom House Examinations— Streets of the City 
— Architectural Peculiarities— Characteristics of the City 
Crowds— The Negroes and the Chinese— The "Section of 
Hygiene "—Other Features. 

An easy-going writer, signing himself F. Moreno, 
who was born in the neighborhood, probably, of 
the Sierra Morena or of Albarracin, and who 
came to Cuba evidently in search of gold coins, 
found, in their stead, alas! only torn and filthy 
banknotes, difficult, at best, to get hold of or to cash 
in the Banco de España. He escaped the dreaded 
" Yellow Jack," and quite likely landed in Havana at 
the wharf of San Francisco ; he doubtless sauntered 
through the streets of La Muralla, O'Reilly, and 
San Miguel ; met in the evenings some congenial 



spirits; his countrymen, at the " Louvre" ; frequented 
the Cervantes Theatre ; lived on the public revenue ; 
visited a few odd families of the few stray natives 
of his Province, and so obtained from the Island 
which bore the burden of his personality only such 
impressions as can be derived from such centres and 
such places. He discussed public affairs only in the 
company of small office clerks and their boon com- 
panions, and at last, becoming weary of his surround- 
ings, or, perchance, disappointed at not reaping a 
harvest of gold pieces or banknotes in the unhappy 
land of the sugar-cane, he thought it best to return 
whence he came — to Madrid, centre of culture, 
focus of office-seekers, metropolis where art, litera- 
ture, talent and the court ministers are gathered to- 
gether. This writer, who according to the an- 
nouncement of the publishers appears to have 
written of other things, has dedicated to you, Paco, 
a work entitled "Cuba and its People," which I 
have read with interest, which has made me laugh 
at times and incensed me at others, and which, 
altogether, has but served to strengthen my long 
established opinion of the little love which our 
Peninsular brothers bear us, and of that ungracious 
spirit of our race, which, while very proud and 
haughty, is constantly boasting a capacity for doing 
great things — an ever certain sign of the small results 
it actually accomplishes — for example, the Colonies. 


And it is for the purpose of informing you, friend 
Paco, not only of the doings of Señor Moreno and 
his congeners, but also of the true causes which 
make the "most beautiful land which human eyes 
ever saw" a theatre of all the "horrors of the 
moral world;" it is for this purpose I take the 
liberty of writing you the present and succeeding 

Follow then, my narrative and my comments, 
and if you have the ardent blood of the good Cas- 
tilians in your veins, and wholesome ideas of patri- 
otism in your brain, prepare to agree with me that 
all ihe evil it possesses — which is no small matter, 
this much calumniated Cuban people — is the result 
of its Spanish colonization; and that the little or 
almost nothing which it has of good, is what it assimi- 
lates spontaneously from the American atmosphere. 

Let us enter Paco, Cuba, by the same route that 
F. Moreno took — whether by steamer or sailing 
vessel — through the mouth of the Morro; on either 
side are the ancient castles and fortresses which 
have cost and still cost much hard earned cash to 
maintain, and which guard in their moats the bloody 
memories of political convulsions to which we will 
not refer, but which would make the least sensitive 
reluctant to recall. Pray do not scrutinize too 
closely the waters of the port. The filth which is 
deposited in thick crusts at the bottom makes the 


waves muddy, and its emanations, if we are to believe 
the doctors of the country — reputed for their know- 
ledge and scientific attainments — constitute the 
principal cause of yellow fever. It is quite true that 
while there is an abundance of filth, there is also a 
yearly collection of large sums by a Board of Port 
Wardens, whose numerous members are composed of 
Spaniards that came to Cuba by the same route as 
Señor Moreno, and who w T ill surely busy themselves 
in perceiving defects and in criticising the country, 
but not in cleaning the port. 

Do not investigate, either, the other services con- 
nected with the port ; that of the police for example. 
Be very careful of your baggage and of your person 
among the boatmen, who are all old tars of the 
Spanish Navy, and proceed to make your landing on 
terra firma. You must quickly open your baggage 
and show your belongings, but do not alarm your- 
self. If you have it about you, give a dollar to the 
officer — who is, indeed, not a Cuban — and you will 
find this ordeal not at all a trying one. If you 
have occasion to deal with the Custom House you 
will discover that this matter of having your bag- 
gage searched or left unmolested is insignificant in 
comparison with examining the manifest of a valu- 
able cargo. 

We are now in the city ; the streets are in truth 
narrow and dirty; they reveal at once the fact that 

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the city was planned by the first settlers — natives of 
an European country. Some streets are indeed paved 
with Belgian blocks; this novelty dates from 1862 
and its introduction was celebrated with great 
festivities, but most of them are not so paved, for 
the Belgian blocks are imported from abroad and the 
City Fathers have not been able to afford the heavy 
duty imposed by the tariff. 

There is a drainage system, but so bad is it that 
it serves only as a receptacle for filth, and there is 
not enough water for cleaning purposes, here, where 
springs abound. Public improvements have cer- 
tainly not pre-occupied the Colonial Government, 
which, while appropriating eight millions one 
hundred and sixty-five thousand dollars for the 
maintenance of the army, allows one million two 
hundred and thirty-eight thousand for public works r 
and this almost entirely expended on the personnel. 

The buildings are for the most part low, like 
those in the towns of Andalusia. The first archi- 
tects were the Spanish settlers, and their plans and 
models have been preserved, thus giving to our cities 
a peculiar and characteristic stamp. Even the 
famous convents of San Juan de Dios, of Santo 
Domingo and others, built by the monks who flocked 
to Cuba from the earliest times, and which have 
been regarded as model edifices, were, and are yet, 
in the worst possible taste. 


In the streets you will come upon what is cer- 
tainly a motley crowd. The negroes, by their num- 
bers and their depth of color, will attract your 
atttention ; slavery will be recalled to your mind, 
transplanted by Europe to American soil. The 
historian will no doubt remember that Spain re- 
ceived from England in 1817 four hundred thou- 
sand pounds sterling to abolish the slave trade, 
and that Emancipation, first gradual (Moret law of 
1870), afterwards absolute (Cortes of 1886), and 
never indemnified, is owing to the generous efforts 
of the Reformists, to the Revolutionists, and finally 
to the Cuban Autonomists. 

You will also see the Chinamen; a type which 
brings to memory another importation, that of the 
the coolie contract laborer, not to say slave ; a system 
against which the civilized world has at last cried 
out, while Spanish statesmen are cherishing the 
philanthropic idea of contracting for 400,000 more 
Chinamen, notwithstanding the treaty of Pekin, for 
employment in the agricultural work of Cuba. And 
it must not surprise you, Paco, that this degraded 
race has brought along its vices to Cuba; but what 
may truly astonish you is that this is but a new 
means of exploitation at the expense of public 
morals, and that through the gambling dens, etc., 
of the Chinese, many functionaries of the police, and 
other public employes, become enriched. 


You will also see in the heart of the city, in 
the most thickly populated streets, a spectacle of 
never ceasing scandal and demoralization, but if 
you should mention this to one of those discontented 
members of society who abound in this country, or 
to some conscientious paterfamilias who is anxious 
for the moral education of his children, and who, 
by the way, Senor Moreno did not meet, he will tell 
you that there is in the Civil Government, never by 
chance entrusted to a Cuban,* a department called 
Section of Hygiene, whose duty is supposed to be 
the punishment and prevention of immorality, but 
which, disgraceful as it may seem, makes this but 
another source of revenue to the officers. And like 
this Section of Hygiene which, by the way, is not a 
small detail of the administration of our Spanish 
Colony, you will see many other things which 
Moreno has not pointed out to you, and which I 
will proceed to indicate in other letters. 

* Since the first publication of this book, Don Carlos 
Rodriguez Batista, a Cuban by birth, has held the office of 
Civil Governor of Havana. Although educated in Spain 
and identified with its policy his origin must have greatly 
contributed to forming his good intentions for the improve- 
ment of the moral condition of affairs, but the many dif- 
ficulties and obstacles inherent in the general system of 
government of the island are such that he was unable to 
execute them. Señor Batista is, however, one of those rare 
governors who have left a pleasant memory in Cuba. 


P. S. — You will likewise find in the heart of 
Havana (just as Moreno tells you) that the laundries, 
and particularly the undertakers' establishments, 
instead of transacting their business quietly with pen, 
ink and paper, make a great sidewalk show of palls, 
candelabra and other trappings which are commonly 
used on funeral occasions. But you must not ignore 
the fact that there are municipal laws which forbid 
all this, yet ward officials who consent to it, City 
Councilors who are blind because they will not see, 
Governors whom this state of affairs does not con- 
cern, and a country that suffers it with patience. 




No. 5.— Calle del Prado, Havana. 

Havana Inns and Hostelkies— Low Cost of Living— The Royal 
Lottery— The Country Monopolized and Exploited— Cuban 
Sacrifices during the Separatist Wars. 

Permit me to tell you, Paco (whom I have not 
the distinguished honor of knowing), that your 
friend Don F. Moreno has not given you, as he pre- 
tends, a good or even an indifferent idea of the 
capital of the Great Antilles. 

Of what he has given abundant proof is his utter 
ignorance concerning it; and that he knows as 
little of Havana as all the genteel employes and 
bureaucrats that travel to and fro between Cuba 
and Madrid, by the National Steamship Line, and 


who study in the island only the most expedi- 
tious manner of accumulating money in order to 
spend it in Fornos and other like centres of Madrid. 
He pomposely entitles his book " Cuba y su gente " 
" Cuba and its People," but far from describing 
Cuba, its political, social and economic conditions, 
he entertains you chatting about the streets of 
Havana and the manner of paving them, of a dozen 
or so of individuals, of some third rate hotels and 
lodging houses and of all sorts of low places and 
their habitues. 

If these were the only resorts and social circles 
which he frequented it is not to be wondered that 
so select a writer speaks evil and calumny of 
woman, of the family life and of the youth of Cuba 
to whose homes he was never admitted, and contact 
with which was repugnant to him, as is the 
atmosphere of virtue to the vicious man. 

As Moreno did not show you our hostelries, 
permit me to do so. It would not be strange if in 
Havana there were no comfortable hotels. The 
proprietors of these, like those in nearly all the 
other industries, hail from those famous Spanish 
provinces where Alexander Dumas and his travel- 
ing companions sought in vain for a place where 
they might find relief from hunger and fatigue, and 
found in their extremity only a thimbleful of choc- 
olate for each person. 


I should inform you, and can prove to you, my 
dearest Paco, that in Havana you can find innu- 
merable restaurants and inns where all, whether 
rich or poor, can satisfy their appetite with much or 
little money. Fortunately the land is naturally 
fertile, and offers in abundance many edible 

For fifty cents in paper, equivalent to twenty-five 
in silver, you can get an excellent breakfast at 
which bread, fresh meat and vegetables will not be 
wanting. For correspondingly more money you 
will find tables served with a luxury and good taste 
unsurpassed in Paris. Modest and cheap inns are 
everywhere to be found, and are a source of never 
ending comfort to the laboring classes. Do not 
doubt this, though Moreno assures you to the con- 
trary. The Cuban table is one of the most abund- 
ant, cheap and varied in existence ; that is precisely 
why the Cuban does not emigrate (and God knows 
he might well do so) and it is precisely on this 
account that Señor Moreno came to Cuba and will 
return only when expedient; and for this same 
reason his countrymen have followed and will con- 
tinue to follow in his wake. 

The hotels, some of them yet conducted in primi- 
tive Spanish style, are improving, especially since 
the facilities of communication with the United 
States and the low rates of fare permit Americans 



to come and winter among us and teach us how to 
install and direct these undertakings. Some of the 
hotels are now sumptuous establishments, where 
electric lights, reading rooms, elevators, and other 
comforts of American origin have been introduced, 

No. 6.— Grand Hotel, Inglaterka. 

and where, quietly and without ado — admiring 
and praising the natural beauty of this unhappy 
land — have resided such noted travellers as Froude, 
Plant, Archbishop Corrigan, United States Senator 
John Sherman, and others of equal station. 

Inquire of these eminent persons, Paco, and not 
of the bull fighter Mazzantini, as your friend ad- 
vises, if it is not true that they have published in 
their respective countries, criticisms and impres- 


sions of this island much more favorable and grati- 
fying to our national pride than those which appear 
in the book of a Spaniard so ultra-Spanish as Señor 

It matters but little to foreigners whether our 
ports are open to admit immigrants. It is true that 
if foreigners did emigrate to Cuba, they would not 
find employment in the selling of Royal Lottery 
tickets. That industry is reserved for the Canary 
Islanders, retired army officers, and for others who 
are not Cubans, nor even negroes ; for all these, 
or the greater part of them, devote themselves to 
mechanical or agricultural pursuits, and not even 
in these occupations enjoy the comforts or privileges 
which the government in its various departments 
offers in all shapes, combinations and sinecures to 
our peninsular brethren. 

What? Is this indeed a Spanish province without a 
domestic tariff and without contributing of its blood? 

By no means; this is a country monopolized and 
exploited ; the domestic tariff is the aspiration to- 
wards supreme monopoly. And as for contribu- 
tions of blood, these are made when required. 
During the Separatist Wars the Cubans were en- 
listed, recruited and transported to the field without 
distinction of classes ; the only exceptions were 
those who paid to General Concha or his successor 
a thousand dollars as redemption fee. 


More than thirty thousand Cubans died defend- 
ing the national flag. The companies of discip- 
lined militia, composed of Cubans organized for the 
defense of rural districts, were marshaled and com- 
pelled to go from one department to another. They 
suffered hard campaigns ; most of them perished ; 
and the survivors at the end of the war returned 
to their homes without recompense, without dis- 
charge, without pay, without honor ; without other 
honor than seeing themselves insulted by Señor 
Moreno and his kind. 

A contribution of blood ? The people pay it now, 
but with the sweat of their brows and the fruit 
of their labors, for the Cuban people are the miser- 
able tenants of a heartless landlord called the De- 
partment of Public Works. 






IM -Domingo ; ta d« Jeiwo de «?j>i. 


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No. 8.— First Periodical, Publication in Cuba. " Papel Periódico. 

The Press of Cuba— Its Genesis— The Two Classes of The Com- 
munity—Their Respective Aims and Ideals— The Two Classes 
of Journals— History of Cuban Journalism— Its Pains, Penal- 
ties and Rewards— The Press Laws— Scientific and Other 

In considering the newspaper press of the Island 
of Cuba, as also all other manifestations of this 
peculiar social organism, you have always to distin- 
guish not only the political factions, but also their 
various antecedents. 

In order that you may well understand what I 
mean, unknown Paco, and that you may be able to 
refute the assertions of your cicerone, Señor Moreno, 
you must know once for all, that in Cuba, as in 


ancient Rome, there exist two distinct social 
classes, the patricians and the plebeians. One of 
them is the dominating or governing class, com- 
posed of all the Spaniards who have come and are 
still coming to reap the fortune not in prospect in 
their own country, and some of whom engage in com- 
merce and the trades ; of the officials who live at the 
expense of the government a certain length of time, 
then either return or remain in the colony accord- 
ing to which way the wind is blowing; of the ex- 
army officers who live at ease as civil government 
employes ; of the army officers themselves, and 
finally, of all the adventurers of the home country 
who form the personnel of the colonial organization, 
but who, in general, are not conspicuous for their 
culture. This class has one all-absorbing interest 
in common, namely, bleeding the country ; and this 
interest is veiled behind a pretense of sentiment — 
love for the nation which gives them her unlimited 
protection. And both these impulses, sentiment and 
interest, combine to assert themselves with over- 
whelming force. 

The other class is composed (and in this I in- 
clude the negroes now free) of the Cubans, natives 
of the country, those dominated over, the permanent 
element of this social body, who till the land, prac- 
tice the arts, the trades and the professions ; but 
who are, nevertheless, systematically excluded from 


all government positions, and who do not enjoy 
privileges of any description ; who pay, suffer and 
endure the injustice of their exploiters. 

These are also closely united by one sentiment, 
one aspiration, the love of a liberty which they do 
not enjoy, and the yearning for the justice of which 
they stand in such sad need ; but, unfortunately, 
they are not protected nor shielded by a supreme 
authority that enforces equity and justice and 
which gives to every man his due, or at least en- 
deavors to do so ; on the contrary, they are con- 
stantly cast off, persecuted and treated with suspicion 
and mistrust. 

Between these two classes one may formulate 
logical subdivisions which I shall not stop to point 
out. It is requisite only that I advert to the fact 
that in the former class there are but few men of good 
faith, sound judgment and conscientious spirit, who 
look upon this, their adopted home, as part of their 
common country, and on its people as their verit- 
able brothers ; who ask and wish for Cuba and the 
Cubans the same guarantees and privileges which 
the Spaniard enjoys in the home country, and who 
reprobate and condemn the rule maintained here 
for so many years, and which produces only the 
sad result of a class division, unending discord, 
impoverishment and misery. 

The classification thus made, for the exactness of 


which I can vouch, and in proof of which I can 
cite reputed writers, will enable .you to clearly un- 
derstand what I stated at the beginning of this let- 
ter : In considering the newspaper press of Cuba you 
must distinguish not only the political factions, but also 
their various antecedents. 

Two primary types predominate among our period- 
icals; one class legitimately represents the interests 
of the dominant order, its supremacy, its aspirations, 
its prejudices; and inasmuch as the only eagerness 
of this class of journals is to drain the country of all 
that it has to offer, it naturally follows that the 
distinctive characteristic of these periodicals is mer- 
cantile and reactionary. 

The second type represents the earnest longings 
and generous purposes of a cultured but oppressed 
people, who, conscious of their rights, maintain, in 
the narrow channel left them, their struggle for the 
franchises and prerogatives of citizens of civilized 
nations. Their character is such as naturally results 
from the necessity of combating with self-denial 
and tenacity against arbitrariness and injustice; it is 
virile and enlightened. While the first class angrily 
upholds and supports the impositions and exactions 
of the power secured to the favored class, the second, 
w T ith ardent patriotism, discusses and defends the 
principles of government which affect the present 
and future of the Cuban community. 


It is easy to infer from this, esteemed Paco, that 
it is not the journalists of the second class who are 
ahead in the arduous campaign against adversaries 
so formidable, and for whom journalism is a means 
of enrichment. Certainly not; for the former there 
have been reserved its persecutions, its pains and pen- 
alties ; for the latter, its favors, recompenses, honors, 
and wealth. 

The history of Cuban journalism is short; notice 
the following dates which your correspondent 
Moreno, in his eagerness to tell of Cuba and her 
people, has overlooked, and you will find what I 
say confirmed. 

In 1790, that is, three centuries after the discovery 
of America — at the same period when the spirit of 
humanity was marking its progress in the French 
Revolution^-this European colony had its doors still 
closed to the commerce of the world, and had not 
yet given that sign of culture which the publication 
of a newspaper reveals. 

In 1792, under the government of Las Casas, a 
weekly newspaper first saw the light, and was pub- 
lished gratuitously by Don José Agustín Caballero, 
Tomes Romay, Manuel Zequeira and other distin- 
guished Cubans, who devoted its profits to the main- 
tenance of a public school. 

In 1793 the Sociedad Patriótica took charge of 
the enterprise and made it a semi- weekly. In 1805 


it became a tri- weekly, and it was not until Sep- 
tember 1, 1810 (in this nineteenth century!) that it 
became a daily paper, devoting its profits to the 
founding of a library. The dimensions of this 
miniature newspaper were those of a sheet of fools- 
cap, folded in two leaves. The printer tried in vain 
to improve the edition, but could find no new types 
in the Havana market. And this was the state of 
affairs in the fairest gem of the Castilian crown, 
which already had over 400,000 inhabitants. Later 
on, this paper flourished under the titles of "Papel 
Periódico" and " Aviso y Diario de la Habana" and 
subsequently was converted into the " Gaceta Oficial," 
which still exists under the immediate supervision 
of the Government, with unheard-of privileges and 
monopolies, and which serves to enrich its managers 
and augment their influence. 

Thus, the first newspaper published in the history 
of Cuba, the result of the patriotic and disinterested 
efforts of some of her children, became a money- 
making concern for the favored class ; and if I were 
to penetrate into historic annals, how many sad 
pages would not this official newspaper reveal, 
founded and supported gratuitously, as it was, by 
generous Cubans who have lived to see it devoted 
to the printing of the laws and the decrees intended 
to stifle the intellectual movement of the country. 

In 1818, through the initiative of an illustrious 




and deserving Cuban (Don Francisco Arango y 
Parreño) the ports of Cuba were opened to free com- 
merce, the currents of civilization penetrated with 
vigorous impulse from North America and other 
countries, and it can be said that intellectual life 
among us dates from that time. Thenceforward we 

had a press and books The Press, 

which is a stronger power, more efficient and more 
certain in its effects than any that despotism can 
ever hope to exercise. 

But since the time of the " Papel Periódico " Cuban 
journalism, properly so called, has always retained 
the noble characteristics with which it was marked 
by its generous founders. It has always been a labor 

of love and patriotism; and 
accordingly, it has been the 
faithful, although stifled or- 
gan of the liberal aspira- 
tions of an oppressed people. 
Such were the " Faro In- 
dustrial" "El Siglo" and 
"El Pais," which, constantly 
battling in defense of their 
cherished ideals, gave ex- 
pression from 1847 to 1868 
(the period of the Revolution) to the sentiments 
of the Cuban people. They contended for social 




and political reforms, and an administration 
supported and maintained through patriotic enter- 
prises by men of experience and of wealth ; they 
sought in their publications neither enrichment 
nor glory, but willingly sacrificed their means, 
their leisure, their individual safety and that of 
their families, for the welfare of their unhappy 
country. To this galaxy of illus- 
trious worthies belong José de 
J. Quintiliano García, Cristóbal 
Madan, José Quintín Suzarte, 
Eduardo Machado, the memor- 
able Gaspar Betancourt Cisneros, 
Juan B. Sagarra, Francisco Javier 
Balmaseda, José María de Car- 
denas, José Frías, and above all 
the venerable Count de Pozos 
Dulces, a patrician whose name, 
since it is not wrought in bronze, should be engraved 
with inextinguishable gratitude in the hearts of the 

All these were either men of fortune or were liv- 
ing at ease in the practice of the learned professions; 
they belonged either to the aristocracy of blood or 
to that of letters, and they were all capable of with- 
standing with dignity and uprightness the allure- 
ments of power and of resisting the perils of perse- 
cution, practising journalism gratuitously without 

No. 10.— D. Jose Quintín 


other hope of recompense than the benefit which the 
country might receive. 

Side by side with these distinguished men, there 
arose the beginning of the first of the social classes 
which I have described, with all the patronage and 
all the privileges which the Government and its 
branches could offer. Their organs were "El 
Noticioso y Lucero," " La Prensa," and " El Diario 
de la Marina." Founded and carried on as com- 
mercial enterprises, they have had the satisfaction 
of seeing their stocks quoted as marketable securities, 
and their standard of politics has always been 
determined by the Government which sustains 
them, and by the stockholders who / pocket the 
dividends. For the journalists of this class, who, 
against all reason and without scruple, have upheld 
the mismanagement of the Colonial Government, 
and who have assumed to dignify themselves as 
''Ministers of all the Ministries," there have been 
plenty of crosses of honor, titles, pensions and other 
rewards which a country prodigal in riches, 
governed and administered for the benefit of the 
minority, naturally has to offer. 

We have scarcely to refer to the journalism of 
Cuba during the period of the Revolution. From 
1869, whence dated a liberty of the press conceded 
off-hand and which served only to give vent to re- 
pressed animosities, until 1878, there was in Cuba no 



other than the official press. The political situation 
conspired during this decade more than at any 
other time to serve as a foothold for Spanish 
journalists, convinced as they were that their own 
advancement depended on an exaggerated defense 
of Government interests, and on flattering the 
political sentiments and fanning the animosities of 
their countrymen. The voice of the Cuban was not 
heard during this period. 

When peace was established and it appeared that 
new horizons were presenting themselves to the 
Cubans, our press reappeared in a paper called " El 
Triunfo,'' 1 founded by a deserving and generous 
Spaniard, Pérez de Molina, but edited gratuitously 
and with patriotic disinterestedness by Cuban 
writers, who from the beginning gave it their sup- 
port in the defense of liberal 
movements and reforms, ideals 
always cherished and never real- 

To-day, unknown Paco, our 
newspaper press boasts the same 
characteristics as those to which 
I have drawn your attention ' in 
this extended letter. The two 
typical journals are the " Diario 
de la Marina" long the organ of 
the bureaucracy, of restriction, of abuses of power 

No. 11. 
D. Ricardo Delmonte 



and of monopolies, and "El Pais" defender of the 
aspirations of a cultured, liberal, but oppressed and 
badly governed people. The former continues to 
enjoy all the favors and privileges which have 
afforded it sustenance from the beginning, and the 
latter continues to battle against all the opposition 
which have assailed it from the first. 

Yonder are the rich and the rewarded, here the 
poor in power and influence; there, those who barter 
in journalism, here, those who, though busily 
employed in the professions, gladly devote what 
time they can spare to the cause of their country. 
Among these writers is An- 
tonio Govin, a lawyer who is 
an honor to our literature 
and to our forum ; who at an 
early age had gathered bril- 
liant laurels, more because 
of his great talent and pro- 
found erudition than even 
his well known uprightness 
of character and acknowl- 
edged patriotism; Rafael 
Montoro, landed proprietor, 
jurist, philosopher and deputy to the Cortez at thirty- 
four years of age, attaining in parliament a place 
among the foremost orators; Francisco A. Conte, a 
Spanish publicist who devotes his pen to the advo- 



cacy of our reforms ; Ricardo Delmonte (editor of El 
Pais), a cultured literateur whose reputation as an 
honorable and discreet journalist was gained in the 
columns of El Siglo ; Federico García Ramis, a lawyer, 
whose early journalistic efforts already indicate him 
as a conscientious writer ; Leopoldo Cancio, attorney 
and landed proprietor; Bernabé Maidagán, Fabio 
Freiré, Eduardo Dolz, Pablo Desvernine, and An- 
tonio Zambrana, members of the bar ; Francisco de 
Zayas, M. D.; León Broch, lawyer, and many 
more who with infinite self-denial have indefatiga- 
bly labored in the defense of Cuban interests, 
without other reward than the hope, not yet realized, 
of one day seeing the unfortunate land of their 
birth free, prosperous and happy. 

In this slight historical review, unknown Paco, I 
have made no mention of the other newspapers 
which your correspondent Moreno quotes, nor of the 
press and censorship laws which have weighed so 
heavily upon our journalism in various ways. 

Of the former there is but little to say : the two 
periodicals described are types of the rest. 

Cuban journalism in Havana, as in the other 
cities of the Island, is an undertaking that requires 
perseverance, disinterestedness, and patriotism. 
" Conservative " (Spanish) journalism is an indus- 
trial enterprise thriving on the barter of patriotism. 

And as regards the press laws? aye, Señor don 


Francisco ! If in Spain you have heard in its time 
of the "red pencil," please remember that in Cuba 
until 1879 it was dipped in blood, to drown Cuban 
thought and to give strength to their adversa- 
ries !* 

Later on . . . '. a law which permitted Gen- 
eral Fajardo to carry to the Tribunal of the Press 
through the medium of his satraps, all autonomistic 
newspapers, so as to cause their suspension and 

And to-day there exists a law which kindly per- 
mits the editor to discuss all subjects which are not 
prohibited, which exiles or imprisons him for in- 
fringing it, and which upholds the immunity that 
government abuses possess by converting a censure 
of administrative actions into a crime against the 

Of course all these restrictions concern Cuban 
journalism alone .... but as for the 
other ! 

But this letter waxes long and it behooves us to 
study other matters besides the Press laws of this 
blessed Spanish colony. 

*A Royal order of November 19th, 1853, prohibited the 
circulation in the Island of Cuba of Spanish newspapers and 
books which had been printed in foreign countries, confirm- 
ing a previous order of 1837. 

Another Royal order of April 25th, 1851, prohibited the 
circulation of even the " Revista de España" in Cuba. 



P. S. — Before closing I wish to say that your 
friend F. Moreno, in his eagerness to acquaint you 
in his book with " Cuba and her People," and with 
many people who are not of Cuba, has also enumer- 
ated various newspapers which are published in 
Havana, and likewise their editorial personnel, most 
of them, however, more or less obscure. 

But I do not know whether it is with the best in- 
tentions that he omits mentioning the many liter- 
ary and scientific publications sustained and edited 
by Cuban associations and by intelligent Cubans 
throughout the country, who thus show the degree 
of culture this people has attained, notwithstanding 
the obstacles by which it has been surrounded, 
thanks alone to its geographical position, its territo- 
rial extension, its daily contact with other commu- 
nities, and to the vivid tropical imagination that 
easily assimilates modern knowl- 
edge and ideas. 

Among these publications I 
recommend to you : 

" La Revista de Cuba," re- 
warded at the Amsterdam Ex- 
position ; founded by the late 
José A. Cortina, a man of fortune 
who employed his wealth in 
works of this kind. 
no. 13.-D. jóse Antonio " La Revista Cubana," man- 



aged by Enrique J. Varona, a talented philologist 
and profound thinker. 

" Memorias de la Real Sociedad Económica." 
" Los Anales de la Academia de Ciencia." 
" La Revista de Derecho y Administración." 
" Memorias del Círculo de Abogados." 
" Revista de Agricultura." 
" El Eco de Cuba — Revista Enciclopédica." 
" La Revista de Derecho." 
" Anales de la Sociedad Odontológica." 
" La Crónica Médico-Quirúrgica." 
" La Enciclopedia — Boletín Fotográfico." 
" Boletín de la Sociedad Protectora de Animales y 
Plantas," and many other publications which I 
assure you are worth more — much more — than the 
obscure papers which your not-too-veracious corres- 
pondent has offered to you as samples of Cuban 




Social and Industrial, Conditions— Sugar and Cattle Raising 
—Consequences of Misgovernment— The Criminal Classes- 
Penal Statistics. 

It is manifest that Don F. Moreno was at a loss 
how to begin his fourth letter, and yet there being 
no lack of material, it was 
not an embarras de richesse 
that deterred him. 

It may be proper, how- 
ever, to mention that this 
same superabundance of 
poor material, for which 
Moreno so strongly cen- 
sures us, is Spanish and 
wholly Spanish. 

It is true that Cuba has 
changed considerably since 
Columbus discovered it. 
My last letter demonstrates that with regard to 
journalism, during a period of ninety years, the peo- 
ple of this country have not been outstripped, not- 
withstanding the fact that in 1774 the National 
Government opposed the establishment of printing 
presses in its colonies, and that in 1790 only that of 
the Captain-General existed in Havana. 

We had the great good fortune to have the Ameri- 
cans export to us the railway in 1836, long before 

No. 15.— Junta de Fomento. 

Estación del Ferrocarril de la 



its introduction in Spain, and later on to teach 
us to make use of the telegraph; these advances 
directed us on the paths of civilization, and 
helped us to overcome the obstacles which beset our ■ 
progress ; worthy of record is the fact that these 
notable improvements were the results of the private 
enterprise of these same Cubans who are accused of 
indolence, and who, at the memorable Council of 
Fomento showed themselves most active in this and 
other undertakings not less progressive. And by the 
way, this work was greatly retarded and interrupted, 
to its no small detriment, by the authorities, who ob- 
jected to the tracks infringing upon the military 
confines of the castles Principe and Atraes (!). 

It is true that money seems to be a thing of the 
past. But pray, why has this financial crisis come 
to pass, which causes Spanish statesmen to appre- 
hend a national catastrophe? Is it, perchance, the 
imputed indolence and prodigality of the people of 
this soil, or is it that in Cuba has been graphically 
enacted the story of the goose that laid the golden 
eggs? It is because that emporium of riches to 
which the scions of Peninsular families ran in 
shoals, dreaming a repetition of the Golden Fleece, 
which they sometimes realized, has been converted 
into a sterile land, where misery has fastened her 
iron clutches and where no ray of hope can be dis- 



On these points, Paco, I do not intend to speak ; 
I withdraw in favor of a young Cuban writer and 
lawyer, as remarkable for his modesty as for his 
vast erudition and talent; he is a distinguished 
journalist who edits one of the many newspapers 
published in Cuba out of sheer patriotism and 
love of science without a thought or hope of 
gain, and which treat with discretion and sound 
sense local questions of far more interest than those 
of which Moreno and his confreres — because of 
total ignorance — have not even given approximate 
ideas in those mockeries of journalism and mercen- 
ary sheets known under the names of La Verdad, 
El Leon Español, La Polémica, El Rayo, and other 
like concoctions of impossible non- 

The talented writer to, whom I 
refer is Don Leopoldo Cancio, ex- 
member of the Cortes; the paper 
to which he contributes is "La 
Unión de Güines," and the article 
which comes most apropos is the 
following : 

No. 16. 
Leopoldo Cancio. 

" It has always been a favorite 
pretext of those interested in the 
slavery of the Negro and the servitude of the 
Chinese that the Caucasian race is not adapted 
for agricultural work in the heat of the tropics, 


and to justify their claim they have insisted with 
extraordinary tenacity on the theory that the Cre- 
oles (natives of the white race) have degenerated 
from their progenitors, whom they do not equal 
in either persistence or activity at work. With 
this assertion and a similar one to the effect 
that the negro does not work in the held except 
under the constraint of slavery, they have had at 
hand a host of arguments with which to defend 
African slavery and the Asiatic contract law. 

The idea of the indolence of the native whites 
has been propagated and maintained here with ex- 
traordinary success, thanks to the political assump- 
tions of the ruling Spaniards, who have found it an 
easy and pleasing task to attribute and take to 
themselves all the virtues, and to place the Cubans 
on the level of an enervated and lazy people, slow 
in agricultural work, and disturbers of the country's 
peace and of its lords. In their polemics with the 
Cuban press their most authoritative official organs 
affirm with an imperturbable self-complacency that 
it is they who represent the classes that work and 
pay, in contrast to the others, who, it would appear, 
by a special dispensation of Providence, are able to 
live regardless of what we were under the impres- 
sion was the common precept — that man must earn 
his bread by the sweat of his brow. 

Nevertheless, the observation and study of our 
political economy in comparison with that of Spain 
and of the Spanish American republics, proves that 
no man of the Spanish race is more laborious than 
the Cuban. In spite of the drawbacks attached to 
the imnense accumulations of landed property, and 


the debasing effects on labor due especially to 
slavery, and notwithstanding that Cuba is an 
exploited colony whose tariff laws and system of 
taxation have not been calculated to encourage 
production, but on the contrary, the special object of 
which has been to fill the royal coffers, no matter to 
what extent the island might be drained; in spite 
of all this, the people of the country have worked 
with a faith and perseverance perhaps excessive, 
revealing a spirit of industry not excelled in Spain 
nor in any of its former American colonies. 

It was owing to the superhuman efforts of Cuban 
planters, such as Poey, Diago, and Arrieta, that the 
great inventions of European engineers for the 
manufacture of sugar were introduced, and almost 
entirely owing to the Cuban planters is the develop- 
ment and renown which this industry afterwards 
attained. It was they who, foreseeing coming 
events, established centralized plants of machinery 
to cope with the effects of the abolition of slavery, 
thus sowing the seed which was afterwards to 
germinate and bear fruit. 

Battling against the antiquated civil laws, and 
subjected to the rigor of a monstrous military 
regimen, a system of government altogether unique, 
they promoted the establishment of the majority of 
the sugar plantations which to-day give Cuba a 
prominent place among countries producing that 

The mayorales (overseers), and the rest of the 
inferior employes who are familiar to us under the 
name of operarios (laborers), under whose immediate 
management the cultivation and fabrication of the 


sugar is effected, have, in spite of all that may be 
said of our industrial developments, comparing it 
with that of other nations standing in the front of 
civilization, been the efficient agents of an industry 
which has produced from eighty to ninety millions 
of dollars a year. 

Who has ploughed and cultivated the fields of 
Vuelta Abajo, producing the best tobacco in the 
world? There also the natives of the country have 
been in the great majority among the vegueros 
(tobacco workers), maintaining the production in 
spite of all the obstacles set against it by the law 
and by the usurers. 

This district of more than 6000 square miles 
has not a single port qualified for foreign com- 
merce. The producer has been obliged to succumb 
before the tavern keeper, the necessary middle man 
between himself and a market located at a distance 
of 150 miles over well-nigh impassable roads, thus 
forcing him to maintain a continuous chain of 
parasites until he reaches Havana, the first port 
after Cape San Antonio. In this unfortunate 
province there seem to have gathered with especial 
rapacity the monopolies and privileges which have 
flourished in Cuba to such an extent as even to allow 
the Company of Fomento y Navegación del Sur the 
exclusive use of the sea coast for steam navigation 
from Batabanó to the extreme east of the island. 
Here the Spaniards with very few exceptions, have 
done nothing but carry on the retail trade and that 
of usury, waiting in the pleasant shade of their 
taverns until the veguero toilsomely gathers his 
precious harvest, and then starts out, suffering for 

• •"tt^* 6 *^ 



some days the burning rays of the tropical sun, in 
search of money with which to repay his advances to- 
gether with all of the fabulous usury imposed on him. 

The minor productions, and also the pork 
industry, have always been in the hands of native 
Cubans in the same proportion as in the other 
agricultural pursuits, that is, almost entirely. 
Worthy of mention is the considerable progress 
made in Puerto Principe and Las Villas in cattle 
raising through the efforts of Cuban landowners, 
who by means of selection or crossing with the best 
foreign breeds, have perfected the native cattle so 
that in few years most excellent results have been 
obtained. Mola, Betancourt, Cisneros, Monteverde, 
Arteaga and Borrero in Puerto Principe; Castillo, 
Luna, Legón, Castro and Garcia, in Sancti Spiritus 
were the promoters of this progress, and they were 
all native Cubans. 

The magnificent farms of these districts were for 
the most part the work of free labor. It was the 
white peasantry that cleared the wilds and produced 
the extensive Guinea-herb pasture lands, which are 
still the finest in Cuba. 

If we had the official statistics of approximately 
all the agricultural products of the island, we would 
have no difficulty in proving that at least half is 
the work of white creóles, and if we include, as is 
proper, the colored people, then only fifteen or 
twenty per cent, at most would relate to inhabitants 
of other origin, Canary Islanders, Spaniards and 
Chinese. In the absence of statistical figures the- 
reader can easily prove within the range of his 
own observation the exactness of our statements. 


"But what more eloquent proof of their industry 
than the astounding fact that the abolition of slav- 
ery, effected without compensation or indemnity, 
has in no way lessened agricultural production? 
Contrary in fact to expectation and to the law 
established by those who have studied the transi- 
tion from slavery to liberty, and have marked as 
consequent a diminution of products, we have seen 
our sugar and tobacco crops increase during a finan- 
cial depression and our pork industry rise again 
after a nearly total extinction during the Ten Years' 
War (1868-78). Our rural middle class came to the 
rescue of the old sugar plantations with their for- 
tunes and labor, and while giving them new life 
saw buried forever, alas ! the better part of their 
resources, their faith, and their hopes. 

" Eagerness to produce, without stopping to reflect 
to what end and for what purpose, has dragged 
many to irretrievable ruin, or to an existence full 
of anxiety, uncertainty and privation. 

"Nearly all the Spaniards here devote themselves 
to the retail business, the wholesale trade having 
always been in the hands of foreigners and of a few 
Cubans. Although many economists have ques- 
tioned whether this branch of activity is or is not 
to be regarded as production, no one has ever 
yet doubted that agricultural labor is the root and 
foundation of all others. But in commerce also the 
Cubans in our cities have occupied positions as 
clerks, bookkeepers, brokers, etc., without counting 
those who like Mariátegui, Drake, Castillo, Illos 
and others, have been bankers and merchants on a 
large scale. It seems scarcely necessary to speak of 


the professions and many of the trades. The phy- 
sicians, lawyers, pharmacists, engineers, musicians, 
tobacconists are Cubans in proportion of one hundred 
to one, for though it be true that in Havana one sees 
many Spanish tobacconists, the number of Cubans 
is much greater ; and besides, Santiago de las Vegas, 
Bejucal, San Antonio, Guanajay and other towns of 
the Island make good my assertions. 

" The offices of Government seem to be the exclu- 
sive property and privilege of the Spaniards ; their 
aversion to labor is manifested in the recent regula- 
tion issued by the Marquis of Méndez Nunez, Secre- 
tary to the Governor General, to the effect that 
business would be transacted in his offices from 6 
A. M. to 12 M. only ; and this in. a city where 
activity begins at 8 A. M. and where everybody 
is breakfasting from ten to eleven. Furthermore is 
the notorious fact that the business hours in the 
Government offices are but too short at best, as the 
unfortunate victim who has had occasion to visit 
them can well testify. In return, the natives of the 
Island work from sunrise to sunset, and from New 
Year's Day to Christmas Eve. 

"It is obvious that the Cubans, being the more 
cultured and wealthy class, and not living for gain 
alone, both produce and consume more than the 
Spaniards, the majority of whom are poor, and who, 
by dint only of much saving and scraping, are enabled 
to raise the meagre sum which they came in search 
of, in order to realize their cherished dream of pos- 
sessing a bit of land in their native town, that is, if 
they do not fail in the effort. Those among them 
who succeed in making and consolidating a compe- 


tence are, of course, very few, and their mode of life 
is practically the same as that of the native Cubans, 
whom they decried before having themselves as- 
cended the social scale. 

"In the United States, Santo Domingo and the 
Antilles, more than thirty thousand Cubans have 
gained an honorable livelihood by their personal 
efforts during long years of exile, enriching Santo 
Domingo with the sugar industry, and Key West 
with that of tobacco. Nowhere have they offered 
such a spectacle as the French nobles, for example, 
afforded Europe at the end of the last century, 
when they were driven from their castles by the 
torrent of the Revolution. 

"It seems incredible that it should be necessary to 
discuss so trivial a subject, but in Cuba every state- 
ment of the facts is questioned, even the evidence of 
one's own senses, thinking in this way to mitigate 
to some extent the system of exploitation and 
schemes of monopoly w T hich have ruined the 
country. It is necessary to rectify these false 
assertions if we would have the light of truth 
penetrate everywhere and dissipate the darkness 
which despotism requires in order to exist and 

" Catalonia has for centuries enjoyed a legislation 
calculated to assure to it the Peninsular and Colonial 
markets; Cuba has never participated in these 
favors of power. Nevertheless the Catalonian in- 
dustries have not made greater progress than those 
of Cuba; and yet the industrial spirit of the Cata- 
lonians is praised to exaggeration while the Cuban 
character is belittled and maligned. No woman of 


our race surpasses those of Cuba; they know how 
to enjoy the fruits of prosperity as well as to battle 
against adversity; and still there are not wanting 
creatures to deny them virtues which only the blind 
or evil-minded do not see. 

" Let these prejudices cease; let justice be done to 
Cuba, and then the bands of social solidarity will 
reappear, so that this country may continue to be 
what it is in truth — one of the most vigorous and 
healthy offshoots of the Spanish race." 

In my undertaking to refute one by one the mis- 
statements of which your correspondent has been 
guilty in regard to this poor Island of Cuba — so 
little known and so harshly judged — I find myself 
compelled to submit to his incoherencies and want 
of sequence and of unity, revealing an absolute lack 
of critical ability (not wishing to employ a stronger 
term), which denotes the imperfect writer, just as 
his ideas denote the passionate, enraged enemy of 
Cuban society, and at the same time the uncon- 
scious defamer of his own country, which is respon- 
sible before history and humanity at large for all 
the horrors that are perpetrated in a land colonized 
and governed by Spain. 

According to F. Moreno, the prostrated condition 
of Cuba is owing first to the Spaniards who impro- 
vise fortunes by perpetrating swindles and by rob- 


bing the treasury ; and second, to the Cubans who 
squander in orgies the inheritance of their Spanish 
fathers, acquired through privation and toil. It 
therefore, follows that by confiscating the goods of 
the spendthrift Cubans, and imprisoning those who 
rob and swindle, the causes would be radically ex- 
tirpated, and we could ever after live in peace and 

But, do you understand these vaticinations, friend 
Paco? Can you grasp what is meant by inheri- 
tances obtained through privation and toil by means 
of wretched swindling and defalcation? And that 
this is what constitutes the ruin of a country so 
richly gifted by nature ? . . . 

Oh ! no ! Let Spaniards come to Cuba to till and 
promote by means of honest labor this land of ex- 
traordinary fertility; let them and the natives enjoy 
the same rights and guarantees which the Spaniard 
does in the metropolis ; let division and class privi- 
lege vanish ; establish order and equity ; let the 
country take part in the administration of common 
interests, or rather, let it govern its own interests ; 
let the Colony cease to be a great field of exploita- 
tion where gather a multitude of office seekers that 
like an ineradicable plague pollutes the corridors of 
the ministry ; let, in fine, the old regime of Spanish 
colonization disappear ; let the mother country fol- 
low the example of England and 


Cuba will regenerate from her ashes and rise anew 
from her ruins. A good system of government will 
dispel demoralization by its natural and logical 
consequences ; Home Rule will make the existence 
of defaulting officials all but impossible ; and 
there will be no prodigal sons when the industrious 
fathers give the edifying example of ever- faithful 

Under the influence of this new departure, which 
will transform the diverse elements of this society 
into a compactly solid body, there will surely not 
arise a Moreno to assert that the robberies and em- 
bezzlements perpetrated in the cities are committed 
in the name of Cuba Libre, thus requiring a Cuban 
like myself, jealous of his country's honor, to assure 
you that the revolutionary cry of 1868 was never 
dishonored by the depredations of brigandage ; that 
that generous impulse of a cultured people may have 
been mistaken in its purpose, but it was not the work 
of bandits and marauders, far rather was it an effort 
of self-sacrifice and. patriotism in which a whole 
generation of valiant and heroic men sacrificed their 
fortunes and shed their blood. 

No ; it is not true that the thefts and embezzle- 
ments are the work of the " Separatist" islanders. 
Separatism does not exist to-day, or at least has no 
military power : highway robbery is not the occupa- 
tion of the islanders. Pray look up, friend Paco, the 


criminal statistics of these provinces, investigate the 
nativity of the delinquents, and through the official 
testimony of the Regents of our Courts find out 
from whence the bandits hail. I fear it will cause 
you sadness to learn that the lesser number, consid- 
erably the fewest of those tried and convicted, were 
born beneath this tropical sky, and that by far the 
greater number are natives of Spain, and foreigners. 
In case you should experience a feeling of bitterness 
over this result, it may comfort you to hear that 
in order to avoid giving rise to murmuring the 
following expedient has been adopted : — that in 
the publication of the criminal statistics the nativity 
of those sentenced shall be omitted. Surely this is 
an advantage ! 

Nevertheless, the statistics of 1884 remained 
printed, and as it is opportune and may interest 
you, I copy them from a paper at hand*. 

"^Subsequently, the statistics of 1886 were published, and 
since the first edition of this work, have been reproduced in 
the periodical íl La Semana;" but its figures, with but 
slight differences, show results identical with those noted 



Statistics published by the distinguished editor of u Los 
Sucesos," José de J. Marques, Havana, November 18th, 

"From the quarterly synopsis of the penal statis- 
tics of the Island of Cuba during the year 1884, 
published in the Gaceta of Madrid, it appears 
that 1415 individuals are suffering terms of impris- 
onment. Of these 508 are Negroes, 108 Chinese, 
586 European Spaniards, 180 Cubans (White Na- 
tives), 19 Canary Islanders, and 14 foreigners. The 
colored race is represented by something more than 
one-third, and adding the Chinese, these two ele- 
ments compose something less than one-half of the 
number of prisoners. 

" The statistics of population are divided as fol- 
lows : Negroes, 460,000; White Natives, 860,000; 
White Europeans, including the Canary Islanders, 
140,000; Chinese, 30,000; Foreigners, 10,000; a 
total of 1,500,000. Taking this as a basis it fol- 
lows that the convicts are in proportion of 1.06 for 
every 1,000 inhabitants. 

" In relation to the several subdivisions the ratios 
are respectively as follows : 

Native Whites : Population, 860,000 ; Convicts, 
180 ; 1 for every 4,777 inhabitants. 

Negroes : Population, 460,000. Convicts, 508. 
Proportion, 1 for every 905 inhabitants. 


Foreigners : Popoulation, 10,000. Convicts, 14. 
Proportion, 1 for every 714 inhabitants. 

Chinese : Population, 30,000. Convicts, 108. 
Proportion, 1 for every 277 inhabitants. 

European Spaniards, including Canary Islanders: 
Popoulation, 140,000. Convicts, 605. Proportion, 
1 for every 231 inhabitants. 

"It follows that there are imprisoned: 1.10 for 
every 1000 colored inhabitants, 1.40 foreigners, 3.61 
Chinese, 4.32 Europeans, and only 0.20 of native 

And now let me drop my badly cut pen to treat 
later another subject. Comment on the above is 



No. 18.— Sala Sorrin. 
Library of the Sociedad Económica. 

Literary Activity in Cuba— Public and Private Libraries- 
Spread of Intelligence— Cuban as Distinguished from 
Spanish Literature— Cuban Authors and their Works. 

I find on examining Moreno's fifth letter, in which 
he makes known to you the principal Cuban writings 
published in latter days, that I am enabled to save 
much ink, much paper, and no little effort in the 
preparation of these epistles, for he pretends to pic- 
ture Cuba and its People, and I assure you he has 
not met the people of Cuba, nor is he acquainted 
with Cuba itself, his citation of the writings and 
publications which he mentions serving but to con- 
firm my statement. 

All of these are the work of foreigners, under- 


standing as such those who are not natives of the 
country in which they reside, so that if his inten- 
tion has been to have you think ill of Cubans who 
cultivate the profession of letters, and in this way 
belittle our literature, let me at once state that the 
productions which he has brought to your notice 
are not the work of Cubans. 

But I will more fully present this subject to you, 
Paco, so that you may realize what distorted accounts 
your guide and instructor has submitted to you. 

Before beginning the task allow me to make a 
counter-statement. In Cuba there are many per- 
sons who spend money in the purchase of literature, 
but it does not transpire that cultured people buy 
such pamphlets as " Cuba and its People," nor do 
they subscribe to papers like La Verdad (Moreno's) or 
El Rayo (Rivero's), nor do they read the almanacs 
and novels which are printed by shoals in Madrid 
and Barcelona. Inasmuch as the Government here 
has not founded nor does it support libraries, the 
only public library being that of the Sociedad Econ- 
ómica, oganized and enriched by donations from its 
members, who are Cubans, it naturally follows that 
the citizens have their private libraries where their 
means permit.* 

*To the commendable zeal, labor and enthusiasm of Don 
Juan Bautista Armenteros, treasurer of the Sociedad Econ- 
ómica, are due many important reforms in the public library, 


In any professional man's office you will find at 
least a thousand volumes of scientific and literary 
works by authors of universal repute. In Havana, 
with a population of 250,000 souls (from which 
deduct the negroes, the Chinese, the Europeans, 
and native w T hites who do not know how to read), 
there are more than fifty book-stores which are surely 
not maintained for mere pleasure or caprice on the 
part of their proprietors. If they are not all regis- 
tered, and if the printing offices and lithographic es- 
tablishment do not appear in the census, where I 
have sought them in vain, — for in this, as in all other 
matters our statistics are incomplete — it is because 
the means resorted to by the trades-people in order 
to avoid paying the exorbitant taxes are regulated 

which was almost wholly abandoned 
from 1868 to 1878. Jorrin Hall and 
Chaple Hall were added to the gal- 
leries while he was in commission ; 
3775 volumes, 44 collections of newspa- 
pers, 2691 brochures, 1042 pamphlets, 
and 322 loose sheets or prints were 
added to the library ; 1430 volumes of 
works, 138 collections of newspapers, 
and 5 of prints were bound. 

At the close of his term the library No. 19. 

numbered 21,078 volumes, comprising »■ J™n b. armenteros. 
21,430 books, which go to form 10,551 works, in place of 17,303 
volumes which it formerly counted ; 217 complete collections 
of newspapers ia lieu of 184 ; also a number of incomplete 
ones; 5 large portfolio cases, containing maps, designs, draw- 



according to the much or little favor dispensed them 
by the employes of the tax office. I can assure you 
of the truth of my assertions. On Obispo street 
alone there are ten bookstores and four subscription 
centres. The knowledge of languages is no unusual 
thing, and while these may not have been learned 
in the official institutes, whose methods are founded 
on the principle that everything should be studied 
and nothing learned, nevertheless the cultured classes 
of the country, which are numerous, study foreign 
languages, and teach them to their children. Daily 
communication with the United States, and above 
all, the emigration to that country during the Revo- 
lution, has taught us English and continues to do 
so, and our litterateurs are familiar with Corneille, 
Victor Hugo, Byron, and Shakespeare, as well as 
with Moratin and Cervantes. 

ings, etc. He and his friends made valu- 
'Í able donations, such as Froud's History 

W vibt. , - of the " ^Ecumenical Council" (costing, 

unbound, 3000 francs), "Treasury of Eng- 
lish Art," by Vernon, and Montaneras 
edition of "Don Quixote." 

Senor Armenteros also collected seven 
volumes of manuscripts and autographs, 
and the six numerical and alphabetical 
catalogues relating respectively to the 
Robredo, Jorrin and Chaple Halls. The 
library has recently had an increase of 
nearly 1000 volumes. 

In the twelve months of 1886, according to the report of 
the committee, more than 5600 persons visited the library. 

No. '¿o — Carlos na- 




But let us return to our literary productions. In 
perusing the passages quoted by Moreno from vari- 
ous sources, we make another discovery, namely, 
that the writers are not only foreigners, but are 
furthermore members of that privileged class of 
society which is full of prejudice and bitterness 
against the country, and which I have described in 
a previous letter. 

Am I to concern myself with the vaticinations of 
Don Fernando Casanova Gil, a 
personage entirely unknown in 
the political and literary circles 
of Havana, and whose name I 
here see for the first time in 
print ? Who, according to 
Moreno, has published a num- 
ber of pamphlets in which he 
designates the Cubans as parri- 
cides, and exhorts the Catalo- 
nians to "awaken" against 
them ; in which he wounds deeply the public senti- 
ment of our country by defaming and desecrating 
the ever-venerated memory of that learned Cuban, 
Don José de la Luz Caballero? It would be descend- 
ing too low to place myself on a level with those who, 
like Señor Moreno, regard as truth what appears in 
such publications. 

Neither shall we stop to consider the other writ- 

No. 21.— Enrique Piñeyro. 



ings and writers whom he quotes ; there is not a 
Cuban author among them. It is this that I would 

insist upon. 

If you desire, inquiring 
Paco, to acquaint yourself 
with our works in this do- 
main, and to form a true 
and correct judgment con- 
cerning the efforts of Cuban 
publicists, whether in the 
sphere of politics, econo- 
mics or sociology, through 
which fruitful means of 
agitation and persuasion 
they have striven for im- 
provement, for progress, and for the reform of old 
and obstinate evils, pray read, consult, study, or 
at least look over the numerous treatises which 
I shall name for you, and whose authors, by their 
learning, their talents, their reputation and their 
works, suffice to prove the culture of the community 
in the midst of which they have lived, oppressed, 
but persevering in their ideals. 

It is they, and those whom they represent, that 
really constitute the people of Cuba, whose worth 
and merit it is most important should be known in 
Madrid, in order that it may there be realized that 
it is not a semi-civilized country which is to be 

NO. 22. 
José Ignacio Rodríguez. 




No. 23 —JUAN G. GÓMEZ. 

governed, but a cultured, progressive, intelligent 
community, fully capable of governing itself. 

First of all, procure and read carefully the in- 
numerable treaties and essays 
which have gained for Don José 
Antonio Saco, native of Bay amo, 
a universal reputation as a pub- 
licist. These essays, embracing 
the various subjects of Political 
Economy, Statistics, Coloniza- 
tion, Public Instruction, Hygiene 
and Colonial History, together 
with many pertaining to local 
interests, you will find compiled in several volumes, 
published in New York, Paris and Havana. 

Read the dissertations of the Count of Pozes 
Dulces, which will enlighten you upon the most 
important branches of agriculture and colonial ad- 
ministration. Read Dos Banderas, a pamphlet for 
which we are indebted to the pen of Don José Ramon 
Betancourt, an illustrious Cuban who, for political 
reasons, withheld his name. This essay will inform 
you of the true causes of the revolutionary move- 
ment of '68. 

Read the two memoirs, Indicación and Reforma 
Política, by the venerable patriot, Don Calixto Ber- 
nal, friend of Saco. He died in Madrid in 1868, 


and, like the latter, was a republican of European 
reputation. Read the famous Folleto de Ginebra, a 
work, which of itself, justifies the 
reputation of the author, whose 
name (no longer a secret), is Don 
José Silverio Jorrin. 

Read the. works of Enrique Pi- 
fieyro, of José de Armas y Céspedes, 
and of Antonio Zambrana, upon the 
events of the revolution. The fine 
N °m*mekch<n AEL historical studies of Don José Igna- 
cio Rodriguez ; the works upon 
slavery by Francisco de Armas; La Cuestión de 
Cuba, by Juan Gualberto Gómez ; the dissertations 
upon La Cuestión Económica de Cuba, by José 
Quintín Suzarte ; La Reforma Politica, a work by 
the editors of El Triunfo ; Las Leyes Especiales, due 
to the masterly pen of Don Antonio Govin ; Les 
Oradores de Cuba, by the noted and elegant writer, 
Dou Manuel Sanguili ; El 27 de Noviembre de 1871, 
by Fermín V. Domínguez ; El Espinar Cubano, by 
Don Rafael M. Merchán, an eminent Cuban, who, 
during his voluntary expatriation has devoted his 
studies to the defence and honor of his country. 
Read Cuba Autonómica, by Don Alfredo Zayas. 

But, pray read no more ; for you might be ex- 
hausted by such a gigantic effort. These selected 
models are presented as sufficient to show you that 


in Cuba, notwithstanding its demoralization and 
bad government, there are literary, scientific and 
talented men, who study, learn, think, and work. 

1 will yet have occasion to prove this to you, but 
must proceed now on the path of rectification which 
has been traced for me by the detractor of Cuba 
and its People. 



No. 26 —Principal, Periodicals of Havana. 

Cuban Literature— Its Beginnings and Development— Cuban 
Poets and Historians— Activity in the Fields of Science, 
Art and General Literature— Cuban Painters and Com- 

Let us now treat of Cuban literature which, 
although still in its infancy, holds no small nor 
unimportant place in our Parnassus. 

Were you to judge it, however, by the report of 
your officious informant and the models which he 
brings to your notice, you would surely be con- 
strained to believe that Spain has here founded and 
governs such an incapable colony that the inhabi- 
tants have not even preserved the language of their 


Fortunately this is not the case : the children of 
this ardent soil have a superabundance of imagina- 
tion and talent, and to these natural gifts, above all, 
is due their intelligent progress. 

How little flattering it were to the Spanish nation 
if in the last quarter of the nineteenth century the 
literature of her chief American colony one red as 
morceaux choisis only the patched up, pedantic 
program-advertisement of a negro ball, or some of 
the sonnets and romantic effusions that appear in 
the "Personal" columns of newspapers the world 
over ! 

But perhaps Moreno was so engrossed with his 
official duties that he found no opportunity to study 
our literary movement, nor to examine our bibliog- 
raphy, nor the occasion to meet and know our litter- 
ateurs ; or, if he had time — and being a Government 
employe, that goes without saying — he lacked good 
faith and a desire to interest himself in these 
things ; he did not lack, however, the evil intent of 
describing in Madrid Cuba as he imagined it, or as 
he found it in the narrow, noxious circle where he, 
bird of passage, and confined to the lobbies of the 
bureaucracy, alone breathed freely and felt at home. 

The three young writers, Bobadilla, Valdivia and 
Hermida, whom Moreno quotes, satirizes, and pre- 
sents as a literary trinity, are not representatives of 
Cuban literature, nor is Don José Fornaris the clas- 


sical poet of Cuba. The three first, considering 
their youth — particularly Señor Bobadilla, give 
promise of a brilliant future if they will know how 
to cultivate their faculties by observation and study. 
Fornaris is not a classic, but he is an estimable 
poet, and among the many things he has written 
and published are some lyrical compositions of real 
and distinguished merit.* 

Nor are Don Francisco de Armas, Don Rafael 
Villa, or Señor Perez prominent as writers or poets. 
Señor Moreno critizes them and others with unpar- 
donable levity, and as if the condition and char- 
acter of our literature were to be estimated by their 
works alone. 

Undoubtedly these young men may some day 

* The true -merit of Señor Fornaris consists of his having 
been, during a period of absolute oppression, one of the most 
laborious and zealous men of letters. All his works may 
not be of especial excellence, but in them he taught, as best he 
could, love of Cuba, her liberty and her cherished ideals, con- 
cealing his doctrines from the tyranny of the censor in alle- 
gories and Indian tales. To those who write to-day under 
the aegis of the liberty of the press, the songs of " Siboney " 
and others, have no meaning. But for those who lived in 
that reign of terror, or who have studied it, these songs echo 
the lamentations in which the people who memorized them 
gave expression to their woes, and through which they be- 
came kindled with the realization of their political misfor- 
tunes. To Fornaris, Luaces, Ñapóles, Fajarda and others, 
belongs the glory of having figured among the most popular 
minstrells of an enslaved people. 



honor the country in which they begin with praise- 
worthy enthusiasm the rough and thorny career of 
the public writer, but at present they do not afford 
a true reflex of the advance of Cuba in the matter 
of letters. 

I propose, patient Paco, to give you more exact 
information, following always the plan which I 
have formed of tracing these letters so that you and 
all your Madrid people may have a correct, how- 
ever scant idea of Cuba and its People. 

You have already been informed that until 1790 
the Cubans did not know the printing press at all. 
Now let me tell you that until 1800 no private 
printing press existed anywhere in Cuba ! 

Our first minstrels could reproduce their inspira- 
tions only in manuscript, and but few of these have 
been preserved. These few have been discovered 
as historic relics by some of our 
well-known bibliophiles (Saco, 
Bachiller y Morales, Mendiver, 
?J0^4iW$ etc.), and reveal the state of a 
country where schools were 
sparse in number and established 
with difficulty. 

Every nation has had this 
dark epoch in its history. The 
first steps are as uncertain as 
those of a child learning to walk. But what is truly 

no. 27 — d. antonio ba 
chiller y Morales. 


remarkable and strange is that it should be a Spanish 
colony, founded in 1492, that should find itself in 
darkness and in intellectual infancy at the beginning 
of the nineteenth century. 

Our Juan de Mena* was chronologically the poet 
Rubalcaba. He and Don Manuel de Zequeira are 
the pioneers of a literature which, in less than ninety 
years, offers a long list of illustrious men, some of 
whom already figure among the great Spanish poets 
of the present century. Rubalcaba, who studied 
the classics, especially Virgil, and who successfully 
imitated the latter, had no opportunity to publish his 
compositions. He consequently lacked (in a country 
where the printing press was a rarity when not en- 
tirely prohibited), the incentive that publicity offers 
to polish his productions. 

Zequeira, who possessed solid learning, and who 
excelled Rubalcaba in feeling and in correctness of 
of style, was also unable to publish his works. The 
first edition of his poems was printed by his friends 
in New York (1828) five years after the intellectual 
death of the poet. In his own country he did not 
obtain this glory, — always so dear to those who 
cultivate the muses. 

Homers of a people without traditions, without a 
history, almost without culture, what more could 

*The Spanish Chaucer. 


these minstrels do than offer the first fruits of their 
imagination in a limited number of lyrical compo- 
sitions ? 

But after these there sprang forth that extraordi- 
nary genius — José Maria Heredia. 
He appeared as the elaborated out- 
come of the new schools estab- 
lished in Havana, focussing the 
modern philosophic ideas, which 
were studied and taught by 
talented men in the recently 
established professional chairs, 
and combined in his works all the No . 28> _ d. josé María 

-, . i , r i Heredia. 

progress made in but few years by 
the Cuban youth of that period. He was a poet at 
ten years of age, linguist and litterateur at fifteen, 
lawyer and journalist at twenty, judge in Mexico at 
twenty-five, historian, professor, publicist and an 
exile from his beloved country at thirty-five, the 
time of his early death. 

He, too, had to publish his works in a foreign 
land. The first collection of his poems, printed in 
New York (1825) and reprinted in Toluca, Mexico, 
(1832), gained for him in both Europe and America 
the merited title of a great poet. 

He also published an Historia Universal (1832), 
Sila de Jouy, Abufar de Ducis, Atreo Tiestes, a tragedy, 
and various memoirs, translations, and other works. 


He left unpublished some tragedies and descriptions 
of travels. 

It is not for me, Paco, to commend to you the 
greatness of this fruitful genius, who rivals Quin- 
tana. You might think with Moreno that I am 
actuated by a provincial Cuban sentiment. 

Read rather what Don Alberto Lista, who calls 
him a great poet, writes of him ; read Gallego and 
Martinez de la Rosa ; and if you have a knowledge 
of languages, read Kennidi's Conversations Lexikon ; 
read Ampere, Mazade and Villemain, who have 
made Heredia known respectively in Germany, 
England and France. 

I will only add that the venerated remains of 
that illustrious Cuban — an exile from his country — 
have been lost in a foreign land. And since Moreno 
has given you as samples of our literature a series 
of selections which I consider as the juvenile expres- 
sions of an immature poet, let me invite you to read 
the following ode of our classic poet. It is the 
sublime conception of a surpassing genius who 
dictates therein a touching remembrance to his 
unhapy country. 



Templad mi lira, dádmela, que siento 
En mi alma estremecida y agitada 
Arder la inspiración. ¡ Oh! ¡ cuánto tiempo 
En tinieblas pasó, sin que mi frente 
Brillase con su luz . . . . ¡ Niágara undoso, 
Tu sublime terror solo podría 
Tornarme el don divino, que ensañada 
Me robó del dolor la mano impía. 

Torrente prodigioso, calma, calla 
Tu trueno aterrador: disipa un tanto 


Translated from the Spanish of José Maria Heredia 
by William Cullen Bryant. 

My lyre ! Give me my lyre ! My bosom feels 
The glow of inspiration ; O, how long 
Have I been left in darkness, since this light 
Last visited my brow ! Niagara ! 
Thou with thy rushing waters dost restore 
The heavenly gift which sorrow took away. 

Tremendous torrent ! for an instant hush 
The terror of thy voice, and cast aside 
These wide involving shadows that my eyes 


Las tinieblas que en torno te circundan ; 

Déjame contemplar tu faz serena 

Y de entusiasmo ardiente mi alma llena. 

Yo digno soy de contemplarte: siempre 

Lo común y mezquino desdeñando, 

Ansié por lo terrífico y sublime. 

Al despeñarse el huracán furioso, 

Al retumbar sobre mi frente el rayo, 

Palpitando gocé: vi al Océano 

Azotado por austro proceloso 

Combatir mi bajel y ante mis plantas 

Vórtice hirviente abrir, y amé el peligro. 

Más del mar la fiereza 

En mi alma no produjo 

La profunda impresión que tu grandeza. 

Sereno corres, majestuoso, y luego 
En ásperos peñascos quebrantado, 

May see the fearful beauty of thy face. 

I am not all unworthy of thy sight ' r 

For, from my boyhood, have I loved — 

Shunning the meaner paths of common minds — 

To look on Nature in her loftier moods. 

At the fierce rushing of the hurricane, 

At the near bursting of the thunderbolt, 

I have been touched with joy ; and when the sea 

Lashed by the winds, hath rocked my bark, and showed 

Its yawning caves beneath me, I have loved 

Its dangers and the wrath of elements. 

But never yet the madness of the sea 

Hath moved me as thy grandeur moves me now. 


Te abalanzas violento, arrebatado, 
Como el destino irresistible y ciego. 
¿Qué voz humana describir podría 
De la Sirte rugiente 
La aterradora faz? El alma mía 
En vago pensamiento se confunde 
Al mirar esa férvida corriente 
Que en vano quiere la turbada vista 
En su vuelo seguir al borde oscuro 
Del precipicio altísimo: mil olas, 
Cual pensamientos rápidas pasando, 
Chocan y se enfurecen, 

Y otras mil y otras mil ya las alcanzan, 

Y entre espuma y fragor desaparecen. 

Ved ! llegan, saltan ! El abismo horrendo 
Devora los torrentes despeñados: 
Cruzan se en él mil iris, y asordados 

Thou flowest on in quiet, till thy waves 
Grow broken midst the rocks ; thy current then 
Shoots onward like the irresistible course 
Of Destiny. Ah ! terrible thy rage — 
Thy hoarse and rapid whirlpools there ! My brain 
Grows wild, my senses wander, as I gaze 
Upon the hurrying waters and my sight 
Vainly would follow, as toward the verge 
Sweeps the wide torrent : waves innumerable 
Urge on and overtake the waves before, 
And disappear in thunder and in foam. 
They reach — they leap the barrier : the abyss 
Swallows insatiable the sinking waves. 
A thousand rainbows arch them, and the woods 


Vuelven los bosques el fragor tremendo. 

En las rígidas peñas 

Rómpese el agua: vaporosa nube 

Con elástica fuerza 

Llena el abismo en torbellino, sube, 

Gira en torno, y al éter 

Luminosa pirámide levanta, 

Y por sobre los montes que le cercan 
Al solitario cazador espanta. ' 

Más ¿ qué en tí busca mí anhelante vista 
Con inútil afán ! ¿ Por qué no miro 
Al rededor de tu caverna inmensa 
Las palmas ¡ ay ! las palmas deliciosas, 
Que en las llanuras de mi ardiente patria 
Nacen del sol á la sonrisa, y crecen, 

Y al soplo de las brisas del Océano, 
Bajo un cielo purísimo se mecen? 

Are deafened with the roar. The violent shock 
Shatters to vapours the descending sheets : 
A cloudy whirlwind fills the gulf, and heaves 
The mighty pyramid of circling mist 
To heaven. The solitary hunter near, 
Pauses with terror in the forest shades. 

What seeks my restless eye? Why are not here 
About the jaws of the abyss, the palms, — 
Ah, the delicious palms, — that on the plains 
Of my own native Cuba spring and spread 
Their thickly foliaged summits to the sun, 
And, in the breathings of the ocean air, 
Wave soft beneath the heaven's unspotted blue? 


Este recuerdo á mi pesar me viene . . . 
Nada ¡ oh Niágara ! falta á tu destino, 
Ni otra coroDa que el agreste pino 
A tu terrible majestad conviene. 
La palma y mirto y delicada rosa, 
Muelle placer inspiren y ocio blando 
En frivolo jardín: á tí la suerte 
Guardó más digno objeto, más sublime. 
El alma libre, generosa, fuerte, 
Viene, te vé, se asombra, 
El mezquino deleite menosprecia, 
Y aun se siente elevar cuando te nombra. 

Omnipotente Dios ! En otros climas 
Vi monstruos execrables 
Blasfemando tu nombre sacrosanto, 
Sembrar error y fanatismo impíos, 
Los campos inundar con sangre y llanto, 

But no, Niagara. — thy forest pines 
Are fitter coronal for thee. The palms, 
The effeminate myrtle, the frail rose, may grow 
In gardens, and give out their fragrance there, 
Unmanning him who breathes it. Thine it is 
To do a nobler office. Generous minds 
Behold thee, and are moved, and learn to rise 
Above earth's frivolous pleasures ; they partake 
Thy grandeur at the utterance of thy name. 

God of all truth ! In other lands I've seen 
Lying philosophers, blaspheming men, 
Questioners of thy mysteries, that draw 
Their fellows deep into impiety ; 


! /2S r mP"^~~~"*& 


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De hermanos atizar la infanda guerra, 

Y desolar frenéticos la tierra. 
Vilos, y el pecho se inflamó á su vista 
En grave indignación. Por otra parte 
Vi mentidos filósofos, que osaban 
Escrutar tus misterios, ultrajarte, 

Y de impiedad al lamentable abismo 
A los míseros hombres arrastraban. 
Por eso te buscó mi débil mente, 

En la sublime soledad: ahora 
Entera se abre á ti ; tu mano siente 
En esta inmensidad que me circunda;. 

Y tu profunda voz hiere mi seno 
De este raudal en el eterno trueno. 

Asombroso torrente ! 
¡Cómo tu vista el ánimo enajena 

Y de terror y admiración me llena ! 

And therefore doth ni y spirit seek thy face 
In earth's majestic solitudes. Even here 
My heart doth open all itself to thee; 
In this immensity of loneliness 
I feel thy hand upon me. To my ear 
The eternal thunder of the cataract brings 
Thy voice, and I am humbled as I hear. 

Dread torrent ! that with wonder and with fear 
Dost overwhelm the soul of him that looks 
Upon thee, and dost bear it from itself, 
Whence hast thou thy beginning? Who supplies 
Age after age thy inexhausted springs? 



¿Dó tu origen está? ¿Quién fertiliza 

Por tantos siglos tu inexhausta fuente? 

¿Qué poderosa mano 

Hace que al recibirte 

No rebose en la tierra el Océano? 

Abrió el Señor su mano omnipotente; 
Cubrió tu faz de nubes agitadas, 
Dio su voz á tus aguas despeñadas 

Y ornó con su arco tu terrible frente. 
Ciego, profundo, infatigable corres, 
Como el torrente oscuro de los siglos 

En insondable eternidad . . . . ! Al hombre 
Huyen así las ilusiones gratas, 
Los florecientes días, 

Y despierta al dolor . . . . ! ¡ Ay ! agostada 
Yace mi juventud; mi faz, marchita; 

Y la profunda pena que me agita 
Ruga mi frente de dolor nublada. 

What power hath ordered, that when all thy weight 
Descends into the deep, the swollen waves 
Rise not and roll to overwhelm the earth? 

The Lord hath opened his omnipotent hand 
Covered thy face with clouds and given his voice 
To thy down-rushing waters; He, that girt 
Thy terrible forehead with his radiant bow. 
I see thy never- resting waters run, 
And I bethink me how the tide of time 
Sweeps to eternity. So days of man 
Pass, like a noon-day dream— the blossoming days, — 
And he awakes to sorrow. 


Nunca tanto sentí como este día 
Mi soledad y mísero abandono 

Y lamentable desamor . . . . ¿ Podría 
En edad borrascosa 

Sin amor ser feliz? ¡ Oh ! ¡Si una hermosa 
Mi cariño fijase, 

Y de este abismo al borde turbulento 
Mi vago pensamiento 

Y ardiente admiración acompañase ! 
¡ Cómo gozara, viéndola cubrirse 
De leve palidez, y ser más bella 
En su dulce terror, y sonreírse 

Al sostenerla mis amantes brazos .... 
Delirios de virtud . . . . ¡ Ay ! Desterrado, 
Sin patria, sin amores, 
Sólo miro ante mí llanto y dolores ! 

Niágara poderoso ! 
Adiós ! Adiós! Dentro de pocos años 

Never have I so deeply felt as now 
The hopeless solitude, the abandonment, 
The anguish of a loveless life. Alas ! 
How can the impassioned, the unfrozen heart 
Be happy without love? I would that one, 
Beautiful, worthy to be loved, and joined 
In love with me, now shared my lonely walk 
On this tremendous brink. T'were sweet to see 
Her dear face touched with paleness, and become 
More beatiful from fear, and overspread 
With a faint smile while clinging to my side. 
Dreams — dreams ! I am an exile, and for me 
There is no country and there is no love. 


Ya devorado habrá la tumba fría 

A tu débil cantor. Duren mis versos 

Cual tu gloria inmortal ! Pueda piadoso 

Viéndote algún viajero, 

Dar un suspiro á la memoria mía ! 

Y al abismarse Febo en occidente, 
Feliz yo vuele do el Señor me llama, 

Y al escuchar los ecos de mi fama, 
Alce en las nubes la radiosa frente. 

(Junio 1824.) 

Hear ! dread Niagara ! this my latest verse. 
Yet a few years, and the cold earth shall close 
Over the bones of him who sings thee now 
Thus feelingly. Would' that this, my humble verse, 
Might be, like thou, immortal — I, meanwhile, 
Cheerfully passing to the appointed rest, 
Might raise my radiant forehead in the clouds 
To listen to the echoes of my fame. 

June, 1824- 



NO. 29. 

After Heredia — a star of the first magnitude — 
there shine as poets of considerable merit, Don 
Ramon Velez Herrera, the first 
who had the honor of publishing 
a collectien of poems in Cuba 
(1830) and of whom Salas y 
Quiroga speaks in high praise. 
Don Domingo del Monte, a most 
learned man of letters, who en- 
deavored to form in his admira- 
ble Romances Cubanos a literature 
peculiar to the country, was the 
mentor of the young writers 
of the time and a critic of whom Antonio Cánovas 
del Castillo makes honorable mention, as also of Don 
Félix Tanco, who devoted but 
too short a time to the inspira- 
tion of his muse. Eminent 
above these was Placido, the 
humble mulatto, Gabriel de la 
Concepción Valdés, who began 
his checkered career in a found- 
ling's cradle and ended it on 
a scaffold. He would have 
equalled Heredia, if instead of 
spending his childhood and 
youth in a workshop he had 
received some stimulus from a protecting govern- 

D. Jose Jacinto Milam es. 




31.— D Joaquin Lo- 
renzo Luaces, 

ment or if a less prejudiced social order had 
opened for him a pathway to the fame and laurels 
everywhere reserved for genius. 
A poverty-stricken descendant 
of an abject race of slaves — an 
humble laborer, without edu- 
cation, without incentive, he 
yet possessed in a superlative 
degree the poetic spirit. This 
has been recognized by critics, 
both at home and abroad, and 
accords him a title to immor- 
tality. On his native soil his lot 
was butmisery,insult and death. 
Some of his sonnets, romances and other composi- 
tions would not be disdained by the classic Span- 
iards. If you desire, Paco, to know something more 
of our literature, I pray you, instead of reading the 
doggerel rhymes of a negro ball program, which 
Moreno quotes for your benefit, read with tears in 
your eyes and anguish in your heart, the beautiful, 
touching prayer which Placido wrote in his last 
days. It was recited by that unhappy member of 
the negro race as he was conducted to the scaffold, 
and remains an undying glory of Cuban letters. 
Placido was condemned to death for having sung in 
his works the liberty of his country and of his race. 



Ser de inmensa bondad, Dios poderoso, 
A vos acudo en mi dolor vehemente; 
Extended vuestro brazo omnipotente, 
Rasgad de la calumnia el velo odioso, 
Y arrancad este sello ignominioso 
Con que el mundo manchar quiere mi frente. 

Rey de los reyes, Dios de mis abuelos, 
Vos solo sois mi defensor, Dios mío: 
Todo lo puede quien al mar sombrío 
Olas y peces dio, luz á los cielos, 
Fuego al sol, giro al aire, al Norte heilos, 
Vida á las plantas, movimiento al rio. 


Translated from the Spanish of Placido by the Editor. 

Being of boundless good ! Almighty God ! 

To Thee I turn in my most poignant grief ; 

Extend thy hand omnipotent to hold 

This odious veil of calumny from me, 

And tear away the ignominious seal 

With which the world would harshly brand my brow. 

King of Kings ! Thou God of my forefathers ! 

Thou art my sole defender, oh my God ! 

All may He do who to the sombre sea 

Its waves and fishes gave, to heaven its light, 

Fire to the sun, and to the North its ice, 

Life to the plants, and movement to the rills. 


Todo lo podéis vos, todo fenece 
O se reanima á vuestra voz sagrada: 
Fuera de vos, Señor, el todo es nada, 
Que en la insondable eternidad perece; 

Y aun esa misma nada os obedece 
Pues de ella fué la humanidad creada. 

Yo no os puedo engañar, Dios de clemencia, 

Y pues vuestra eternal Sabiduría 

Vé al través de mi cuerpo el alma mía 
Cual del aire á la clara trasparencia, 
Estorbad que humillada la inocencia 
Bata sus palmas la calumnia impia. 

Mas si cuadra á tu suma omnipotencia 
Que yo perezca cual malvado impío, 

All things canst Thou accomplish ; all things die 
And live again but through thy holy word. 
Apart from Thee, oh Lord, all things are naught 
And lost in fathomless eternity ; 
Yet doth obey Thee this same nothingness, 
For thereof didst Thou humankind create. 

I cannot Thee deceive, thou God of Truth, 
And since it is that thy omniscient eye 
Doth through my body see this soul of mine 
As through the clear transparency of air, 
Do Thou prevent that innocence be crushed 
And wicked slander triumph undisturbed. 

But if in thy opnipotence Thou wouldst 
That I shall perish like a godless wretch, 



Y que los hombres mi cadáver frío 
Ultrajen con maligna complacencia, 
Suene tu voz y acabe mi existencia .... 
Cúmplase en mí tu voluntad, Dios mío ! 

And that men may my cold and lifeless corse 
Abase and outrage with malignant joy, 
Then let thy voice be heard and end my life, 
And let thy will, oh Lord, be done in me ! 

Do not weary, Paco, if over-solicitous in this task, 
I continue to quote Cuban writers and poets whose 
works deserve to be read and recommended : such 
are Don Ramon de Palma remarkable for the purity 
of his diction, and for his journalistic efforts ; also, 
Orgaz, Foxá, Blanchie, Briñas, Roldan, Leopoldo 
Turla, Tolón, Quintero, Andrés 
Días, N. Fajardo, Ramón Pina, 
Santacilia, V. Aguirre, the slave 
Manzano — the merit of whose 
facile and simple prose exceeds 
even that of his poems — Luisa 
Perez, Anselmo Suárez, L. V. 
Betancourt, Villaverde, the Car- 
rillo brothers, Toroella, del Monte, 
the Countess de Merlin, Zam- 
brana, N. Azcárate, José I. Armas, 
Navarrete y Romay, and Fornaris. There are yet 

NO. 32. 



others whom I omit, or whom I do not recall, that 
manifested in the period from 1830 to 1868 by their 
various literary works and in 
their unceasing journalistic 
efforts, the zeal and enthusi- 
asm with which literature has 
been cultivated among us. 
Notable among them all is 
José Jacinto Milanes, the most 
popular, the sweetest, and 
simplest of our' poets; he is 
polished and correct in lan- 
guage, and has distinguished 
himself in dramatic as well 
as in lyric poetry. Gertrudis 
Gómez de Avallaneda, who was the wonder and 
admiration of Quintana, and whose 
distinction was recognized by Lista 
and Gallego ; she was a poet, a 
novelist, and a journalist of ac- 
knowledged rank, while as dra- 
matist she initiated a renaissance 
of classic tragedy in her " Al- 
fonso Munio." Rafael María de 
Mendive, the chaste, gentle, and 
inspired poet, — highly regarded 
by the Spanish critic Cañete ; 
Joaquín Lorenzo Luaces, our Tirtensis, author of 

NO. 33. 

D. Juan Clemente Zenea. 

No. Si. 
D. José Fornaris. 


" Aristodemo," who has given expression in his 
odes to the elevated epic flight of the early class- 
ics, and finally, Juan Clemente Zenea, the sweet 
singer of "Fidelia" and author of Diario de un 
Mártir, wherein are expressed the last sublime 
inspirations of a Cuban poet, written with the 
blood of his viens in the dark dungeon of a Spanish 
fortress. They are the outpourings of a tortured 
soul during eight months of martyrdom ; the tender 
farewell of a father and patriot to his family and 
to his country, as he was preparing to find on the 
scaffold the end of his inexpressible sorrow. 

Read now one of his exquisite lyrics ; read it, 
Paco, for its gentleness and sweetness will efface 
from your mind the unpleasant impression produced 
by the selections of your friend Moreno. 



Mensajera peregrina 
Que al pie de mi bartolina 
Revolando alegre estás, 
¿De dó vienes golondrina? 
Golondrina, ¿á dónde vas? 

Has venido á esta región 
En pos de flores y espumas, 
Y yo clamo en mi prisión 
Por las nieves y las brumas 
Del cielo del Septentrión. 

Bien quisiera contemplar 
Lo que tú dejar quisiste; 


Translated from the Spanish of Juan Clemente Zenea, by the Editor. 

Thou messenger, for wandering, 
Who 'neath my cell art fluttering 
And round and round me gayly fly, 
Whence, oh swallow, art thou winging? 
And whither, swallow, dost thou hie? 

To this south country thou hast flown 
In quest of flowers and Zephyr's breath, 
While I within my prison moan 
And clamor in my dungeon lone 
For wintry skies and snowy heath. 

With longing heart I yearn to see 
That which thou'st lightly left behind; 


Quisiera hallarme en el mar, 
Ver de nuevo el Norte triste, 
Ser golondrina y volar! 

Quisiera á mi hogar volver 

Y allí, según mi costumbre, 
Sin desdichas que temer, 
Verme al amor de la lumbre 
Con mi niña y mi mujer. 

Si el dulce bien que perdí 
Contigo manda un mensaje 
Cuando tornes por aquí, 
Golondrina, sigue el viaje 

Y no te acuerdes de mí. 

Que si buscas, peregrina, 
Dó su frente un sauce inclina 

I long to fly beyond the sea, 
To feel anew the northern wind, 
To be a swallow and to flee. 

I long to find again my nest 
And there, as was my wont of old, 
Without a fear to mar my rest, 
Repose in midst of Love's sweet fold, 
With wife and child to make me blest. 

And if my dear ones, lost to me, 
Should ask that thou a message bring 
When thou again wilt cross the sea, 
Pursue thy flight, thou bird of Spring, 
Be not detained by thought of me. 

For if thou, wanderer, seekest there 
To find a drooping willow where 


Sobre el polvo del que fué, 
Golondrina, golondrina, 
No lo habrá donde yo esté. 

No busques, volando inquieta, 
Mi tumba oscura y secreta, 
Golondrina, ¿no lo ves? 
En la tumba del poeta 
No hay un sauce ni un ciprés ! 

tt shades the dust of hiña that's free, 
Thou swallow fair ! thou swallow fair ! 
Thou 'It seek in vain where I will be. 

So seek not thou with restless flight, - 
To find my dark and hidden grave, 
For kuow'st thou not? thou winged dace? 
O'er poet's tomb no willows wave, 
No cypress marks his resting place. 

But do not imagine, Paco, that the majority of 
the Cuban people live by writing poetry bemoan- 
ing their sorrows, which are many, and making 
merry over their joys, which are so exceedingly few. 

The men of letters whom I have quoted were not 
alone minstrels, poets or writers who cultivated the 
muses, fiction, and general literature. Many of 
them were at the same time distinguished lawyers, 
physicians, chemists, publicists, learned professors, 
men of knowledge or of recognized social standing, 
who in the various branches of art and of science 




did honor to their country. Literature, as you may 

have observed, does not serve in Cuba as a means 

of enrichment; it has only served 

to obtain imprisonment, exile 

and other misfortunes. 

Continue reading, with pa- 
tience, if you are weary, or with 
pleasure if you are interested, 
and you will see that the num- 
ber of Cubans distinguished by 
their labors in the fields of knowl- 
edge and of art apart from poetry 
is not less notable and numerous. 
Bear in mind that until the very end of the last 
century Cuba was deprived of all 
those means of enlightenment 
and intelligence which indicate 
in a country the progress of civ- 

Among historians we count 
Ambrosio deZay as Bazan, whose 
manuscript works, — the first 
bearing upon the early history 
of Cuba, — were sent to the 
mother country and unfortu- 
nately lost: José Martin Felix 
de Arrate, Ignacio de Urrutia, and Antonio José 
Valdés, who accomplished difficult and valuable 




work and made most important investigations re- 
garding the early events of the Island; these data 
were collected and transmitted to us as a precious 
treasure by the Sociedad Económica. Saco, the in- 
defatigable publicist, who did not neglect any sub- 
ject relating to the life and improvement of the 
country ; and finally the industrious José M. de la 
Torre. The errudite and celebrated Pichardo, geog- 
rapher and historian, Santacilia, Pedro Guitéras, 
Manuel Sanguili, author of select historical and fine- 
art studies; Francisco Calcagno, 
who has published a Cuban bio- 
graphical dictionary, being the 
first work of the kind among us, 
and Dr. Antonio Bachiller y 
Morales, an untiring bibliophile, 
member and correspondent of 
several foreign historical socie- 
ties and of the Archaeological 
Academy of Madrid. He was 
born at the beginning of this cen- 
tury, and being one of the teach- 
ers and educators of our youth, has had the satis- 
faction of witnessing and sharing in their triumphs. 
In Medicine we have as conspicuous figures Tomás 
Romay, who, apart from his vast knowledge and 
scientific labors, and if only as having been the 
means of introducing vaccine, deserves that his name 

NO. 38. 
D. Nicolas Gutiérrez. 





NO. 39. 

D Pedho Guiteuas. 

be commemorated in marble. A. Cowley, an emi- 
nent professor ; Francisco Zayas, founder of the first 
chair of Histology in the Span- 
ish dominions ; Nicolas Gutiér- 
rez, corresponding member of 
several foreign academic bodies, 
and founder and President of 
our Academy of Sciences ; he has 
just been named Vice-President 
of the Pan-American Medical 
Congress to meet at Washing- 
ton, a recognition accorded by a 
foreign country to the valuable 
services of a learned Cuban ; 
G. Lebredor, prize-winner in the Academy of Medi- 
cine of Madrid ; Antonio Mestre, founder and Presi- 
dent of the Society for Clinical 
Studies; Carlos Desvernine, who 
in the last Medical Congress held 
in the capital of the United 
States (1887) obtained the ap- 
plause oí the notable men there 
assembled, thus, winning, in 
spite of his youth, laurels and 
renown for his country ; Alba- 
nian, and so many others, who in 
scientific reviews, in the laboratory, and in the pro- 


no 40.— d. néstor 
Ponce de Leon. 



NO. 41. 

fessor's chair have done honor, and continue to do 

honor to us in the broad field of the science of Hip- 

Distinguished as rhetoricians, 
educators and grammarians are 
Vidal, Andrés Dueñas, and 
Pedro, Antonio, and Eusebio 
Guitéres; Luís F. Mantilla, 
the illustrious professor of lan- 
guages ; José María Zayas, au- 
thor of Spanish Grammar and 
other works, Néstor Ponce de 
León, author of an important 

technical Spanish and English dictionary ; Enrique 

J. Varona, a profound thinker and able philologist, 

although he has not yet attained 

his fortieth year, nor been a student 

at any public institute of learning. 
There have excelled in Mathe- 
matics and Engineering, Ménen- 

dez, Sotolongo, and Truvejós ; 

Aniceto Menocal is distinguishing 

himself as an engineer in the 

United States Navy ; D. I. M. cle 

Varona, is author of a remarkable 

project for the Brooklyn aqueduct 

recently accepted; Francisco Albear y Lara, whose 

plans and execution of the Vento Aqueduct of Havana 




are the admiration of foreigners and who received a 

gold medal at the Paris Exposition. 

In Jurisprudence are distinguished the names of 
Urrutia, González, Armas, Go- 
vantes, Escovedo, and Bermu- 
dez ; at the present moment 
Antonio Govin, author of sev- 
eral works on law and adminis- 
tration, is making a name for 
himself ; also Pedro G. Llórente, 
José Bruzón, and Leopoldo Ber- 
riel ; the merits of the latter 
secured for him the recognition 
of the College of Advocates 
(Illustre Colegio de Abogados), and 

his subsequent appointment as Dean. 

In Philosophy, the reverend prelate and earnest 

thinker Félix F. Várela is the 

author of several notable works 

on logic, metaphysics, and poli- 
tics ; he was exiled from his 

country, to which as an educa- 
tor he had devoted his services, 

and his revered remains are 

preserved with sacred care by 

the diocesans of St. Augustine, 

Florida ; Zacarías and Manuel 

Gonzalez del Valle ; the latter No . u,-d. Felipe poey. 

NO. 43 




celebrated for his philosophical contest with José de 
la Luz Caballero, the wise Mentor whose erudition 
was the admiration of Sir Walter Scott and other 
notabilities of Europe. De la Luz initiated his dis- 
ciples in the study of modern philosophy ; his char- 
acter was full of virility and gentleness, and he is 
venerated and loved by his compatriots as a Mes- 
siah of new ideas, but he will always be calum- 
niated by men, who like Moreno, cannot even reach 
within sight of the pedestal of his greatness. 

As statisticians and philanthropists, I will name 
for you Francisco Arango, Pen- 
al ver y Cárdenas, O'Reilly, and 
Caspar Betancourt Cisneros, 
known as the Lugareño. 

In the Natural Sciences, Tran- 
quilino Sandalio de Noda, a 
modest student who acquired his 
vast erudition in the retirement 
of the country and in the soli- 
tude of his library. Alvaro Rei- 
noso, an eminent chemist to 
whom the members of the French 
Institute gave evidence of the esteem in which they 
held his merits in Europe ; he is an agriculturist of 
universal reputation ; Barnet, who obtained the chair 
of Chemistry in Madrid in spite of opposition ; he 

no. 45.— d. nicolas ruiz 



was an early victim to his love of the science of 

And finally, Felipe Poey, the nonogenarian natur- 
alist, the unquestionable glory of our country. His 
work upon Cuban Ichthyology 
received an award at the Amster- 
dam Exposition and is now laid 
on the shelf by the Colonial Min- 
istry, which acquired it for three 
thousand dollars. Shame on the 
Spanish nation if it be not pub- 
lished in a worthy manner ! 

As forensic orators I will cite 
Escobedo, Carbonell, Cintra, Ber- 
mudez ; as pulpit orators Cernada, 
Tristan Medina, who gained admiration in Europe, 
Miguel D. Santos and Arteaga. 

In the Arts may be cited Baez, engraver ; Escobar, 
genre painter and Chartrand, a notable landscape 
painter. In music, White, Cervantes, Diaz Albertini, 
Jiménez, distinguished alumni and winners of first 
prizes at the Conservatory of Paris, artists whose 
genius has been admired in Viena, London, Paris 
and other great centres of Europe and in America ; 
some of the former, like the mulatto, White, are 
exiled from their native soil ; he is the head of the 
Conservatory of Music of Brazil. Diaz Albertini, 

No. 46.— D. Jose White. 



notwithstanding his youth, was judge in the exami- 
nations at the Paris Conservatory. 

As most distinguished composers we count Gaspar 
Villate, author of Zilia, Espa- 
dero, who wrote the famous Canto 
del Esclavo ; he was the favorite 
friend of Gottschalk. 

As professors, orators, writers, 
and artists, as zealous friends of 
the sciences, I could cite a whole 
phalanx of contemporaries, both 
old and young, lawyers, physi- 
cians and artists, whose modesty 
I do not wish to wound ; they 
are doing honor to the coun- 
tries in which they at present reside, study, work 
and shine. But let me conclude this task, for I 
divine that you feel your heart beating with patriotic 
enthusiasm, through being convinced, after having 
read all that this letter contains, that Cuba is a civil- 
ized Colony which does honor to the mother country. 
I am sure you will be the first to maintain hereafter 
that a people who offer so telling a picture of their 
civilization and culture, are worthy not only of 
respect, but of governing themselves and of being 

No 47.— D. Rafae. Díaz 





No. 49.— Statue and Fountain of West India. 

Political Conditions.— The Opposing Parties and their His- 
tory.— Period of Conspiracies.— Futile Hopes of Reform.— 
The Ten Years Struggle.— The Compromise at Zanjón.— 
The Autonomist Party.— Its Platform.— The Conservative 
or Spanish Party.— Broken Promises of the Government. 

From what you have already read you will have 
divined that we Cubans have not been nor are we 
yet a happy people. You must also have perceived 
that if there existed in this much-to-be-pitied Island 
a cultured and intelligent element it must have had 
to battle, still battles, and has yet to battle for the 
obtainment of that well-being which is the ideal of 
mankind and the supreme object of all oppressed 


As regards political matters I go on with real pleas- 
ure, Paco, quite contrary to Moreno, to chat with you, 
being desirous to tell you everything that he has 
withheld either intentionally or through ignorance. 
With your permission I will begin, according to my 
custom, with a little historical sketch. 

In Cuba there have always existed two parties ; 
that of the dominators, and that of the dominated : 
the one which exploits and enjoys privileges, and 
the other which is exploited and oppressed. I re- 
peat at this juncture the points contained in my 
third letter concerning our two social classes. The 
former have always had the support of the Govern- 
ment, with which they have a well-defined connec- 
tion ; the latter have been perpetually harassed by 
suspicion, prejudice and mistrust. The one has 
assumed the pompous name of " Spanish Party" (Par- 
tido Español) ; the other has not been, nor is it now, 
ashamed to be known as the " Cuban Party " (Partido 
Cubano). But between the two parties the observer 
perceives a dividing line, illogical and discouraging, 
not drawn according to the unity of aspirations and 
sentiments of nationality, nor even of race ; it is a 
generator of evil ; but it exists, and it becomes neces- 
sary for me to consider it. 

From the earliest dates of the Colony these two 
tendencies have manifested themselves, although for 
a time after the beginning of the present century , from 


about 1820 down even to 1837 (date of the expulsion 
of the Cuban Deputies from the Spanish Parliament), 
they did not evince such marked and visible charac- 
teristics. Until the latter date, at least, there pre- 
vailed a system of political identity, and the Cubans 
shared the same constitutional rights that the Span- 
iards enjoyed from 1812, with some modifications. 
The logical consequences of this system must be, as 
indeed they were, that the natural ties were strength- 
ened, and that the mutual relations of friendship 
and common interests, wdiich common customs and 
traditions and an equal standing necessarily create 
in the members of a community, were fostered. 
The settlers and their descendants were alike Span- 

Eloquent proofs of the truth of this proposition 
were afforded by our ancestors : their support of the 
mother country at critical moments was given and 
recognized. Jácome Milanés and Pepe Antonio are 
glorious examples. 

Subsequently, however, through the culpable lack 
of foresight of such purblind politicians as Arguelles 
and Sancho, the Cubans were excluded from partici- 
pation in social life. Since the government and ad- 
ministration of this rich territory were left in the 
despotic charge and at the absolute discretion of 
Captain Generals, invested with the power of dis- 
pensing desirable offices ad. libitum, it is not to be won- 



dered that class rivalry and hatred were fomented. 
The ties of affection which the common interests and 
relations of a civilized people produce were severed, 
gradually at first, and afterwards completely. 

Then was initiated that feverish period of politi- 
cal conspiracy directed to do away with an order of 
things so contrary to human 
dignity and self-respect, and to 
the well-being of the Colony. 
At this epoch our history is full 
of sad and bloody pages. But 
even then the public indigna- 
tion was restrained by the voice 
of reason. Authoritative men, 
like José Antonio Saco, arose 
to combat the revolutionary 
tendency, and to demonstrate 
that a system of reforms and of liberal government 
would preserve its dominion to the Nation and 
assure prosperity and happiness to the Colony. 

But, deaf to the subdued clamors of a people 
devoid of a free press, of the right of assembly and 
of the security of law, repeating frequently the pro- 
scriptions of Sila; blind to the signs of the times 
and puffed with pride, the Government failed to heed 
the lessons of its history even after the conclusion 
of the American Civil War and the complete down- 
fall of European domination on this continent. It 

No. 50.— D. Ramón Pintó. 



NO. 51.— D. C.\RLOS MA 

could not realize that a radical change was necessary 
in the politics and administration of Cuba. 

That change was what the 
country confidently hoped for 
when the Committee of Inquiry 
on reforms in Cuba and Porto 
Rico was appointed, but only too 
soon a new and more painful un- 
deception came to fill its cup of 
bitterness. That Committee was 
convened by a Government that 
had founded and ruled the colony 
with the idea, it appears, of dis- 
covering its necessities by interrogating the commis- 
sioners, as if the Government did know these necessi- 
ties but too w T ell. That Commit- 
tee, in which the Cubans joined 
with all sincerity and with legiti- 
mate expectations, was adjourned 
after a number of secret sessions. 
Its proceedings would have re- 
mained unknown but for their 
publication in foreign lands, 
thanks to the patriotism of some 
of the commissioners. The Com- 
mittee dissolved without result, 
without other result than the 
imposition on Cuba of a new and heavier direct 

No. 52— D. Julian gássie. 


tax. The disastrous administration of General Ler- 
sundi came into power, established -Military Com- 
missions, enforced an arbitrary despotism, inaugu- 
rated a reign of terror, and raised a permanent 
scaffold in the Plaza. 

Little wonder is it that in 1868 the revolutionary 
cry of Yara should have gone forth. I shall draw 
a veil, Paco, over this historic period of ten years, 
which in the beginning was a mere frolic and pas- 
time for Lersundi, but in the end, according to 
Jovellar, cost the Spanish nation two hundred 
thousand men and seven hundred millions of money. 

That struggle, upon w T hich contemporaries cannot 
pass judgment, terminated in a compromise. For- 
getfulness of the past was proclaimed. The govern- 
ment promised an administration of liberty and an 
era of concord, and the country, wearied and im- 
poverished, again took heart in the hope of a 
brighter future. 

The Autonomist Party was then organized. On 
the 9th of August, 1878, a Committee of Organiz- 
ation was appointed. It was the first liberal politi- 
cal body created in Cuba under the protection of 
the law. Its creed and aspirations were proclaimed 
in the following : — 



The Social Question. 

Exact fulfillment of the 1st clause of Article 21 of the 
Moret Law, which declares : " The Government will pre- 
sent to the Cortes, when the Cuban Deputies are admitted 
therein, the project of a law for the indemnified emancipa- 
tion of those that have remained in servitude since the enact- 
ment of said law, the regulation at the same time, of 
free negro labor, and the moral and intellectual education 
of those emancipated. 

Exclusively ivhite immigration, giving preference to 
families ; and the removal of all the obstacles put in the 
way of Peninsular and foreign immigration individually 

The Political Question. 

Necessary Liberties. — The full concession of the several 
rights guaranteed in Article I of the Constitution, namely: 
Liberty of the press, the right of assembly and of asso- 
ciation and the right of petition. Furthermore, liberty of 
worship and of instruction, both as regards methods and 

The admission of Cubans on the same basis as other 
Spaniards to all offices and public trusts, in accordance 
with Article XV of the Constitution. 

The full application of the Municipal, Provincial, Elec- ' 
toral, and all the other organic laws of Spain to the Islands 
of Cuba and Porto Rico, without other modification than 


those which local conditions necessitate, in conformity with 
the spirit of the Zanjón convention. 

Fulfillment of Article LXXXIX of the Constitution, 
having in view a system of special laws defining the 
fullest possible decentralization consistent with national 

Separation and independence of the Civil and Military 
powers. Application to the Island of Cuba of the Penal 
Code of the Law of Criminal Procedure, of the Mortgage 
Law, of that concerning Judicial Powers, of the most recent 
Code of Commerce, and other legislative reforms, with the 
modifications required by local interests. 

The National Economic Questions. 

Abolition of export duty on all products of the Island. 

Reform of the Cuban Tariff in such a manner that the 
import duties be solely for revenue; abolition of all differ- 
ential duties, whether specific or relating to the flag. 

Reduction of the duties imposed in the Custom Houses of 
the Home Country on Cuban sugar and molasses, until 
they be reduced to a revenue basis. 

Commercial treaties between Spain and foreign nations, 
particularly the United States, upon the basis of the most 
complete possible reciprocity between these and Cuba; 
giving in the Custom Houses and ports of the Island the 
same immunity and privileges to the products of foreign 
countries which these grant to our productions. 

Havana, August 1st, 1876. 


This important document was signed by José 
María Gal vez, Joan Espo turno, Carlos Saladrigas, 
Francisco P. Gay, Miguel Bravo y Sentís, Ricardo del 
Monte, Juan Bruno Zayas, José Eugenio Bernal 
Joaquín G. Lebredo, Pedro Armen teros, Emilio L. 
Luaces, Antonio Govín, and Manuel P. de Molina, 
editor of El Triunfo.* 

It would not have been surprising if the country, 

* The General Committee of the Liberal party at a meet- 
ing on April 1st, 1882, amplified the above Platform by a pre- 
cise definition of its principles in the following Declarations : 

" The General Committee, considering that the convic- 
tions and aspirations of the Liberal Party are constantly 
subjected in this and in the home country to the most gra- 
tuitous imputations, deems it proper to sum up the aims 
and purposes of the party in the following affirmations : 

"1st. Identity of civil and political rights for Spaniards 
of both hemispheres, thus making the Constitution of the 
State apply in this island without restrictions or limita- 
tions. Complete expression of the unity and integrity of a 
common country. These constitute the fundamental princi- 
ples of the Liberal Party. 

"2nd. The immediate and absolute emancipation of all 
colonial subjects. 

"3d. Colonial Autonomy, with regard to all local ques- 
tions and in accordance with the reiterated declarations of 
the Central Committee, that is to say, under the sovereign- 
ship and authority of the Cortes, together with the head of 
the nation. 

"These declarations are solemnly and deliberately ap- 
proved by the Central Committee and contain the essen- 
tial features of the system of Autonomy to the realization of 
which the Liberal Party is steadfastlv devoted." 



NO. 53. 
D. Carlos Saladrigas. 

still suffering from the stupor and depression conse- 
quent upon the late conflict, had been deaf to the 
call of the patriots who organ- 
ized that movement. But it 
was not so. The Cubans from 
one extreme of the island to 
the other responded unani- 
mously, affiliating themselves 
with the party which, under 
the protection of the law, and 
by means of peaceful agitation, 
endeavored to raise the stand- 
ard of liberty and to promote 
the reforms which had so long 
been claimed and had at last been promised. 

Then it was that we came to know Montoro, 
Govín , Varona, Cancio, Lamar, Márquez, García, 
Montes, Mesa, Cortina, Oruz, Borrero, Vilanova, 
Viondi, Muxó, Oritz, (Carlos and Alberto) Pellón, 
Portillo, Giberga, Dorbercker, Pascual, Gássie, Mon- 
tfalvo, Font y Sterling, C. García Ramis and Ga- 
briel Zendegui. A numerous phalanx of generous 
and eloquent youths, until then unknown. They 
were full of enthusiasm, of patriotism and of wis- 
dom gathered in the solitude of their studies during 
the days of great affliction, or in the isolation of 
ostracism ; they sprang forth as by enchantment, 
and like apostles or militants of the new idea, they 



¡g #»** 1 

| <4-> 

■'•%' . '■i 

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te . í 
1 ' 




came to offer the invaluable aid of their oratory, of 
their energy and of their efforts, to the pioneers of 
the party which proclaimed that colonial liberty 
was compatible with national unity. 

Brilliant and impressive was the spectacle now 
offered the country which had lived so long a time 
under menace and oppression. It had just emerged 
from the ten years' suffering of a rude conflict and 
of the most galling rigors of a military regimen, 
and now it was agitated by a spontaneous move- 
ment and gave itself up, with a confiding trust in 
the good faith of its rulers, to the promotion and 
attainment of its political ideals. 

The country was not^even deterred in its new 
path by the thought that of the few reforms hastily 
introduced in the administration, some, the political 
ones, were left to the discretion and temper of the 
Governor General, while others, like the municipal 
and provincial laws, took on the character of tempo- 
rary enactments, which they still retain. But the 
intelligent spirit of Cuban patriotism which so elo- 
quently manifested itself in the spontaneous and 
energetic organization of the Liberal Party very 
soon discerned the awakening of the old, retro- 
gressive and intolerant party, which was fearful lest 
the new order of things undermine the stronghold 
of its interests. 


There was then organized a party under the name 
of "The Constitutional Union" (Unión Constitucional), 
which promulgated the program that Moreno has 
made known to you. It is an artful paraphrase of 
the platform of the Liberal Party, and while it seemed 
to respond to the necessities of the times, it but veiled 
in reality the intolerances, evasions and dissimula- 
tions calculated for the protection and the benefit of 
« ne class, for the slavery of the negro and the unlim- 
ited power of the white man. Both parties labored 
to attain their ends; the one strove for liberty, for 
decentralization, for autonomy ; the other, for the 
maintenance of its old privileges and monopolies.* 

* The promulgation of the Autonomist platform elicited 
an impassioned protest from the Conservatives of Cuba, who, 
as usual, feigned to believe that the national integrity was 
in danger. At Santiago de Cuba a man was arrested and 
tried because he cheered for autonomy at a political gather- 
ing. The newspaper, El Triunfo, was denounced by the 
Censor of the Press, and public opinion was greatly excited; 
but finally the court rendered the following decision, which 
the Attorney of the Supreme Court accepted, waiving the 
recourse of appeal which the Inferior Court had established: 

" In the City of Havana, the 31st day of May, 1881, in the 
suit instituted between parties, the party of the first part 
being the Censor {Fiscal) of the Press, through his denunci- 
ation of the article entitled u Nuestra Doctrina,' 11 (Our 
Doctrine), published in number one hundred and twenty, of 
the fourth year of the daily periodical named El Triunfo, 
the party of the second part being the Chief Editor of the 
said periodical, Ricardo del Monte. 


Very soon, friend Paco, the spirit of harmony 
and conciliation which, after the close of the war, 
preceded the first moments of the organization of 
the parties, and which for a time was sustained only 
through the personal influence of a Governor, gave 
place to the old jealousies and to the re-establish- 
ment of the old dividing line, with all favors and 

Whereas, on the twenty-third of the present month of 
May, the said denunciation was presented in this Court, 
accompanied by a copy of the periodical, the Censor believ- 
ing that the article referred to falls within the provisions of 
Case 4, Article XVI, of the Press Law now in force, and 
offering to make in the trial of the case such further applica- 
tions as he may deem requisite. 

Whereas, on the said twenty-third above named, the pre- 
sentation of the said denunciation was acknowledged, the 
trial of the case was fixed for the thirtieth, the parties were 
duly summoned, and the notification of the trial was made 
to the said Chief Editor of the paper. 

Whereas, on the twenty-fifth of the present month, 
another denunciation was presented by the Censor of the 
Press, relative to the article published in the periodical 
Diario de Matanzas, number one hundred and seventeen, 
fourth year, issued in the city of that name, entitled "Nuestro 
Programa," reproducing that of El 'Triunfo, " Nuestra 
Doctrina.'' 1 

Whereas, on the twenty-seventh of said month, the pre- 
sentation of this latter denunciation was acknowledged, and 
it was ordered that notice be given the proprietor of the 
Diario de Matanzas that the trial of the denunciation of 
El Triunfo, from which its article was reproduced, had 
been set down for the thirtieth, and that whatever the 
sentence may be, shall be equal in its effects for one and the 


offices for the Conservatives, i. e., the Spanish party, 
to the total exclusion of the Liberals, i. e., the Cuban 

Need I continue, my dearest Paco, the narration 
of like injustices? Must I remind you of the 
actions of General Blanco, who exiled three jour- 
nalists without trial? of General Prendergast, 

other periodical, and that he may appoint attorney and 
counsellor for the trial and be present and give evidence in 
the proceedings of the trial; to which end a communication 
was addressed to the senior Judge of the Inferior Court of 
the City of Matanzas, for notification to the said proprietor 
of the Diario de Matanzas. 

Whereas, at the public trial on the day, hour and place 
appointed, and in successive order, spoke the Censor of the 
Press and the counsellor of the editor and proprietor of the 
newspaper, El Triunfo, the former setting forth the 
following conclusions: First, that the defense and advocacy 
of an Autonomic regime for the Island of Cuba tends to 
undermine the principle of national unity, attacking it 
indirectly at least; second, that in view thereof, El 
Triunfo, which in its article " Nuestra Doctrina," makes 
such advocacy and defense, commits thereby the offence 
provided in Article XVI, Paragraph 4 of the Press 
Law ; and third, that for the reasons above set forth 
it must be condemned to a thirty days' suspension, and the 
payment of the costs of the trial. 

The counsellor of the editor of the El Triunfo set forth 
the following: That a defense of the Autonomic regime 
such as presented in the article of El Triunfo,, entitled 
"Nuestra Doctrina," does not attack, either directly or 
indirectly, the national unity, nor the integrity of its terri- 
tory, and therefore, the said defense is perfectly legitimate, 


who confined in the Morro and then drove from the 
country Don Francisco Cespeda without even a 
hearing, merely to meet the exigencies and pander 
to the prejudices of the Conservative party whom 
this journalist, although a Spaniard, had dared to 
oppose? Likewise the unprincipled appointment 
of two officers of the Permanent Conservative Com- 

and praying that El Triunfo shall be acquitted without 
cost, there having been no one present to represent the 
Diario ele Matanzas. 

Considering that the Autonomist policy, as developed in 
the article of the periodical, El Triunfo, referred to in the 
present denunciation, does not, as an expression of a doc- 
trine, constitute any attack whatsoever upon the national 
dignity, the said periodical limiting itself to the petitioning 
for the Island of Cuba of special laws in the sense of the 
greatest decentralization possible within the national unity, 
notwithstanding that the clearest and most concrete form of 
this decentralization is the Autonomic system developed in 
the said article: 

Considering that no attack is indirectly made on that 
principle of the fundamental law of the State by reason of 
the ideas and considerations expressed in the defense of the 
said doctrine: 

Considering that through the contents of the article in 
the periodical El Triunfo, entitled " Nuestra Doctrina," the 
offense of an indirect attack upon the national unity, and to 
which the Censor's accusation refers as comprised in Case 
4 of Article XVI of the Press Law now in force, has not 
been committed: 

Now, therefore, it is our judgment that we must declare 
and we do hereby declare, that the newspaper, El Triunfo, 
in its article Nuestra Doctrina, has not committed the 



mission to preside over provincial deputations of an 
acknowleged liberal majority and the scandalous over- 
throw of Liberal mayors and magistrates to suit the 
pleasure of the preferred class 
and to make room for their favor- 
ites. The whole electoral ma- 
chinery was worked so as to give 
over to the Conservatives the 
government of even the last pre- 
cinct of this unhappy land, an 
artifice openly confessed in full 
Congress by the Count of Tajeda 
Valdosera, Minister of the Colo- 
nies. Is it necessary to point 
out the significant fact that from 
out of the Conservative Party there has gone forth 
a mighty amy of counts, magistrates and other 

No. 54. 
D. Manuel Sanguilí. 

offense of attacking the national unity; and that we must 
acquit, and do hereby acquit, without costs, the said period- 
ical from the Censor's denunciation imputiDg to it the com- 
mission of the said offense; and whereas, the periodical, 
Diario de Matanzas, has been equally denounced for the 
article " Nuestro Programa, 11 in which that of El Triunfo, 
11 Nuestra Doctrina 11 is reproduced, and in view of Article LIV 
of the said Press Law, we order that this decision shall also 
have equal effect in regard to the said periodical, Diario de 
Matanzas, which decision we pronounce, order and sign. 

José M. Garelly, 
Sebastián de Cubas, 
Gregorio Guitérrez. 


grandees with glistening coats of arms about which 
still lingers the odor of varnish , and who strut proudly 
about in this essentially democratic country ? 

No ; my purpose of refuting the errors into which 
you have been led by your informant is sufficiently 
served by the foregoing brief history of our political 

Thus organized, and constituted as you have here 
observed, the Liberal Party has fought and is fighting 
its bitter contest. It will never relinquish its pur- 
poses; for in them is bound up the future of Cuban so- 
ciety, and of the Cuban home. This party is the per- 
manent and durable element here, and it will with- 
stand future evils, as it resists the present ones, until 
it reaches the goal of its aspirations. Its constancy 
and abnegation have already been proven by the 
severest tests. It must conquer and it will conquer.* 

*The managing Board of the Autonomist Party is com- 
posed of the following gentlemen : 

Juan B. Armenteros, Pedro Armenteros y del Cas- 
tillo, Luis Armenteros, José Bruzón, Raimundo Cabrera, 
Leopoldo Cancio, Francisco A. Conté, José Cárdenas y 
Gassie, Miguel Figueroa, Rafael Fernández de Castro, 
Fernando Freyre de Andrade, José García Montes, Joaquín 
Güell y Renté, José Hernández Abreu, Manuel Francisco 
Lámar, José Luna y Parra, Herminio C. Leyva, Rafael 
Montoro, Antonio Mesa y Domínguez, José Rafael Mon- 
talvo, Ricardo del Monte, Alberto Ortíz, José Manuel Pas- 
cual, Ramón Pérez Trujillo, Demetrio Pérez de la Riva, 


And be assured, Paco, once for all, that the people 
who have the resolution to conspire for their liber- 
ties through thirty years, and the courage to sus- 
tain a fierce and bloody struggle during a whole 
decade, do not Deed to hide their aspirations under 
a mask. The sons of Cuba would display equal 
valor to-day, the same heroic courage, were they not 
persuaded, — and that by the most enlightened 
minds, that in Colonial Autonomy lies the salvation 
of Cuba for the Cubans, for the mother country and 
for civilization. 

Emilio Terry, Juan Ignacio Zuazo, José María Carbonell, 
Carlos Zaldo, Antonio Zambrana, Pedro Esteban y Gon- 
zalez Larrinaga, José F. Pellón. 




No. 56.— Tme Charity Theatre at Santa Clara. 

Cuba, Its Political, Ecclesiastical and Juridical Divisions. 
—The Moral Status of the People.— The Social Evil.— Its 
Exploitation by the Government.— Purity of the Cuban 
People.— The Status of Education.— Historical Review of 
the System of Instruction.— Government Neglect of Edu- 
cation.— Free Schools, Seminaries and Colleges Privately 
Instituted and Conducted. 

The Island of Cuba, Paco, has an area of 43,319 
square miles; the adjacent Island of Pines, (Isla de 
Pinos) 1215 square miles, and the smaller islands 
along the coast contain 1350 square miles, a total of 
45,884. It is divided into six provinces, which 
bear the names of their respective capitals, namely, 
Havana, Matanzas, Pinar del Río, Santa Clara, 
Puerto Principe, and Cuba, and contains a total of 


about 1,500,000 inhabitants. The island is divided 
into two territorial jurisdictions, (Audiencias territori- 
ales) namely, Havana and Puerto Principe; the 
former constitutes an episcopate with 144 parishes 
and the latter an archepiscopate with 55 parishes. 
The jurisdiction of Havana is furthermore divided 
into twenty-seven judicial districts, and that of 
of Puerto Principe into ten such divisions, altogether 
embracing twenty-one " cities," sixteen "towns," and 
numerous villages and settlements. 

I give you this information because I presume, 
(and pray do not be offended) that you are ignorant 
of our physical and political geography, considering 
that even our colonial ministers are unacquainted 
with it. This is one of the many studies they take 
up on assuming office. A statesman once referred 
in open Congress to the inland town of Victoria de 
las Tunas as a seaport, and I furthermore recall 
that in Spain the erroneous impression is very 
general that Havana is Cuba. And finally I give 
you this information because I find that Moreno, 
either intentionally or through unpardonable ignor- 
ance, speaks of Cuban customs and of its immor- 
ality from what he has seen in certain centers of 
Havana — as though the country was so contracted 
that the whole of it was necessarily represented in 
the sinks of vice which he frequented, and of which 
he proves himself so well informed. 


Havana is simply the capital of this pearl in the 
mire, and inasmuch as it contains the great offices of 
administration, is our best situated and best equip- 
ped seaport and our great mercantile focus, it con- 
sequently is the Babylon of this tottering empire, 
where are collected and accumulated the wicked- 
ness and the misery that constitute the scum and 
the dregs of society. 

The general customs of a people, however, are 
not to be judged by those signs of corruption which 
great and populous centres everywhere afford. The 
family — the real foundation of morality — is never 
to be found in dens of vice and iniquity ; these are 
the rotten and isolated members of the social struc- 
ture. Their greater or lesser numbers indicate a 
corresponding degree of laxity in the morals of the 
people and it is this that we have carefully to 

The Cuban family does not frequent such places 
as Capellanes and the Chorrera, known only through 
the "personal" columns of certain newspapers, or 
through books like that of Señor Moreno. These 
foci of foulness have their analogy in every me- 
tropolis ; they are places of resort for the soldiers 
and bureaucrats who live in the country without 
family or ties of affection, for the permanent deni- 
zens of the lodging houses, for the frequenters of 
the public cafés, for that floating population that 


daily pours into a large city in search of diversions 
and pleasures, and for the prodigals and spendthrifts 
of all ages and conditions who compose the retinue 
of vice everywhere. 

But not there is to be found the laborer, who rests 
from the day's fatigue in the hours when vices 
thrive; not there the professional man, who, in the 
tranquility of home, and in the bosom of his family 
lives far removed from such repellant centres of 
corruption ; not there the peasant who has ferti- 
lized the fields with his labor and his sweat, and 
these, friend Paco, make up by far the greater num- 
ber of our people. 

Search the towns of the interior, in the heart of 
the country, and you will find none of those estab- 
lishments of vice and immorality with which Mo- 
reno has had the leisure to become so well acquainted 
in the metropolis. They are there repelled and 
driven out by public opinion. And even in Havana, 
where vice has such a hold and is subjected to 
an impost for the support, as we are to believe, 
of a Hygienic Hospital, you may make some very 
curious studies. I do not invite you to look up the 
statistics of this subject, for as happens in all the 
other branches of Spanish administration, there are 
no statistics. If some imperfect data should exist, 
you may be sure that they will not afford you access 
to it at the office of the Department. The writer 


speaks from experience. However, this defect may 
be supplied by a little diligence. 

Four years ago (in 1885) there were in Havana 
two hundred registered houses of prostitution, of 
various official classifications, and the total number 
of the inmates noted in the lists as being under 
"regulation" was 516, besides 135 not so included, 
and who by so much defrauded the tax office in the 
exercise of their calling. Ninety per cent, of these 
numbers was composed partly of women of the 
colored class, but chiefly of foreigners ; that is, of 
Peninsulars, Canary Islanders and others of extra- 
neous origin, and only the remaining ten per cent, 
comprised white women, native to the country. 
The proportion now existing, according to data 
easily comparable, is yet more significant, and 
speaks much in favor of the moral status of our 
native population. In 1886 there were admitted 
in the Hygienic Hospital 281 patients ; the num- 
ber of the native-born among them was insignifi- 
cant, almost all having been foreigners or Peninsu- 
lars. The individuals of native origin " regularly " 
treated comprise from a fourth to a sixth of the 
total number, and constantly in about these same 

The war caused the dispersion, the ruin of the 
family. Corruption was its sequel. Immorality 
ceased to be rare, but even so the natives of the 


country figure in the great minority in the statistics 
of the social evil. These are indeed wretchedly 
^^ imperfect, despite the dispropor- 

J^f?%n tionate pains taken in the matter 

W Sf by our government, for whom it 

"vT^f ^ >I| is a question of dollars and cents.* 
" W^v y. T ne customs of the country are 

Wwmvf S -ÍS austere and simple. The Cuban 
youth does not consume in vice 
the vigor and strength necessary 
fy .; ¿Wa -\i. to raise itself, as it has raised itself, 
; * J ) from debasement and ignorance. 

h'/ This is, to be sure, the country 

no. 57. -D. francisco of which a certain Governor Gene- 
ral, O'Donnell, said with insulting 
flippancy, that it could be governed with a fiddle 
and fighting cock (con un violin y un gallo). This 

- The " Regulation of Public Hygiene " promulgated July 
17 ? 1877, and still in force, notwithstanding the fact that 
many of its provisions are unconstitutional, affords a curious 

Neither health nor public morals is the objective point of 
its provisions. It is a revenue inspiration, it creates high 
duties; it organizes expensive offices; it imposes 'redeemable 
penalties, it establishes a secret hygienic police, and consti- 
tutes, on the whole, and in all the details of the artfulness 
with which it is combined, not a regulation, but a combina- 
tion of methods to exploit the social evil. It is a law deeply 
demoralizing, and what there is of usefulness in it is never 
obeyed as far as the municipal police is concerned. 

The votaries of immorality are required to be inscribed in 


is the land where the authorities, in consideration 
of certain fees, consent to the conducting through- 
out the year of obscene public balls in the most 
thickly populated quarters of the city, villainous 
and nauseating haunts where mingle all the races ; 
where, dancing and contorting in giddy confu- 
sion, are the lowest types of the social scale, — the 
prostitute, the drunkard, and the criminal. This 
is the city where it is permitted to the courtesan to 
select the precinct, the street and the house in 
which she is to carry on her miserable traffic ; this 
is the land where no regard whatever is paid to the 
dignity of the family, to honor, and to decency ; 
where a Spanish general and his staff scandalized 
the community by their lecherous conduct in 

the Registry (Art. 1). Its clandestine traffic is prohibited, 
and a woman above fifteen years of age (Art. 3) wishing to 
practice it has only to notify the Section of the fact, pay the 
impost and be inscribed. 

A woman of seventeen years, according to our law 
requires the paternal consent to get married ; to appear in 
court on trial she requires a guardian until she is twenty- 
five years of age; but to become a prostitute it is enough for 
her to pay a few dollars to the Administration. The card 
certificate of inscription must bear the likeness of the 
inscribed (Art. 4). She who repents or reforms cannot obtain 
her rehabilitation if the reasons are not satisfactory to the 
members of the Section: this law does not profess the for- 
bearance of Christianity; Magdalens do not pay. 

Unfortunate country! It is fairly covered with corroding 


camp; the colony where the game of " monte," and 
others no less illicit and scandalous have been actu- 
ally established in the streets and public squares as 
a means of collecting funds to build churches, 
where gambling has always been a source of reve- 
nue ; this is the unhappy country where everything 
is made an object of underhanded speculation and 
of corruption. But notwithstanding all this, Paco, 
Cuban society, properly so called, rises superior to 
all these impurities, and its superiority is due to 
its own efforts ; it resists with courage and intelli- 
gence the allurements of officially protected vice. 

It is true that the causes of demoralization have 
been many and serious. Slavery alone — intro- 
duced and maintained by our paternal government 
— was through its contingent of vicious habits, 
sufficient to degrade and corrupt the people ; then 
the military regimen, the despotic rule to which we 
have always been subjected, and whose pernicious 
influence gradually depraves and debases those 
whom it dominates ; and then the incursions — that 
is, the constant migration of officials without means, 
without families, and without regard for the country ; 
dwelling in our cities temporarily, their sole stimu- 
lus and ambition being to acquire a fortune in the 
most expeditious manner, and leaving no trace be- 
hind them but the baleful influence of their vices 
and the remembrance of their bad faith ; but above 


all, Paco, the lack of schools — the absolute, deliber- 
ate, criminal neglect with which public instruction 
has always been treated. 

I repeat, that the Cubans have withstood all these 
evils ; not through incessant feasting and by means 
of lewd dances have they made the progress in 
science, art and literature which has gained for them 
a place among the cultured peoples of the world, 
and which my previous communications have 
pointed out. 

Notwithstanding that the Cubans enjoyed the 
iniquitous profits of slavery, they were yet the first 
to demand its abolition, and they obtained it in 
the Spanish Cortes of 1887 only after untiring 
efforts. Although living in a colony where public 
instruction was looked upon with suspicion and 
distrust, and never protected, it was they who spon- 
taneously and liberally established schools and dis- 
seminated intelligence. These, my dear Paco, are 
the true indications of morality and purity in the 
customs of a country. That you may be better able 
to judge them, follow my investigations, for I make 
no statement that may not easily be confirmed by 
the facts of our history. 

Cuba, a Spanish colony, has had an existence of 
four hundred years. During the 16th and 17th 
centuries schools were unknown ; there were none. 


Until the last century was far advanced, the 18th, 
recollect, the Cubans had not a single institution 
where they could have their children taught to read 
and write. The first school was that of the Beth- 
lehamite fathers in Havana, and was established 
through the generosity of Don Juan F. Carballo; 
he was, according to some authorities, a native of 
Seville, and according to others, of the Canary 
Islands ; he repaid thus generously the debt of 
gratitude he owed the country where he had ac- 
quired his wealth. Already in the 16th century 
a philanthropist of Santiaga de Cuba, Francisco 
Paradas, had afforded a like good example by be- 
queathing a large estate for the purpose of teaching 
Latin linguistics and Christian morals. The legacy 
was eventually made of avail by the Dominican 
Friars, who administered it ; but when the convents 
were abolished it was swallowed by theRoyal Treas- 
ury, and thus the beneficent intentions of the founder 
were frustrated to the permanent damage of this 
unfortunate country. 

Only these two institutions, due entirely to indi- 
vidual initiative, are recorded in our scholastic 
annals during the three first centuries of the colony; 
the scent and thirst for gold reigned supreme. What 
other seed than that of demoralization could be sown 
on such a soil ? Fortunately, its advantageous geo- 
graphical position, its contact with other civilized 


communities, notably the United States, whose in- 
creasing prosperity was perhaps due to the attention 
given to public instruction, saved the Island from 
utter ruin. The sons of wealthy families, in the 
absence of places of learning at home, sought schools 
and colleges in foreign parts ; on their return, with 
the patriotic zeal natural to cultured men, they en- 
deavored to better the intellectual condition of their 
compatriots. This enforced emigration of Cubans 
in quest of learning was fought against by our gov- 
ernment. The children of Cuban families were for- 
bidden to be educated in foreign countries. This 
despotic measure was adopted without any honest 
effort being made to establish schools for instructing 
the children of a population already numbering 
nearly 500,000 souls. 

The Sociedad Económica was founded in 1793, 
during the term of Las Casas, — whose name has 
always been venerated among Cubans. Then, as 
now, the members of this association were the most 
talented men of the country, and their best efforts 
were directed towards promoting public instruc- 
tion. To this worthy institution, essentially a 
Cuban body, are due the first advances made in this 
branch of administration ; it was this association 
that gave the impulse and organization to the 
school system in Cuba ; it established inspections, 
collected statistics, and founded a newspaper to pro- 


mote instruction and devoted its profits to this 
cause ; it raised funds, and labored with such zeal 
and enthusiasm that it finally secured the assistance 
of the Colonial Government and obtained an appro- 
priation, though but of a small amount, for the 
benefit of popular instruction. 

In 1793 there were only seven schools for boys in 
the capital of Cuba, in which 408 white and 144 
free colored children could be educated. From this 
privilege the slaves were debarred and, in sooth, 
their masters enjoyed it but seldom. The seven 
schools referred to, besides a number of seminaries 
for girls, afforded a means of livelihood for a num- 
ber of free mulattoes, and some whites; the schools 
were private undertakings, paid for by the parents. 
Only one, that of the Reverend Father Zenón, of 
Havana, was a free school. 

Reading, writing, and arithmetic were taught in 
these schools. Lorenzo Lendez, a mulatto of Ha- 
vana, was the only one who taught Spanish gram- 
mar. The poor of the free classes were on a par 
with the slaves. 

When this was the state of things in the metropo- 
lis, with its 400,000 inhabitants, what must have 
been the degree of culture in the rest of the island? 
It is certain, friend Paco, that the seeds of refinement 
were not there being sown. 

The Sociedad Económica founded two free schools, 


one for each sex, and was authorized by the Govern- 
ment to negotiate with the Bishop of Havana, as to 
the best means of raising funds for educational pur- 
poses. It is with repugnance that I here write the 
name of Bishop Felix José de Tres Palacios. In 
his blind and stupid opposition he nullified the 
laudable efforts of the country's well wishers by 
maintaining that it was unnecessary to establish 
more schools. 

However, this group of distinguished Cubans 
continued their efforts, although from 1793 to 181(3 
they were unable to accomplish even a part of their 
noble purpose; it was found impossible to obtain an 
official sanction of popular education. During this 
period the increase of schools and of the number 
of pupils was relatively small. In the rest of the 
island — note carefully, Paco — in as many as nine- 
teen districts, there existed in 1817 ninety schools; 
all, or nearly all, founded by private individuals, as 
was the case in the capital. 

The number of philanthropic persons who thus 
founded and supported free schools affords a clear 
proof of the patriotism of the Cubans and not of 
their demoralization. Besides the originators of 
the Sociedad Económica, Don Francisco y Parreño 
should also be mentioned; he donated to the district 
of Güines a building for the support of a free school ; 
(the author recalls with pride and gratitude that he 


there received his elementary education in 1863) ; 
Don Juan Conyedo in San Juan de los Remedios, 
and Mariano Acosta in Bayamo, were also generous 
educators of destitute youth. 

In 1816 the Section of Education of the Sociedad 
Económica was established. It afforded a powerful 
impulse to the cause of education, thanks to the in- 
fluential support of the Governor, Don Alejandro 
Ramirez, a man as worthy of our gratitude as 
General Las Casas. Governors of their rare good 
qualities have been very scarce in Cuba. 

The schools improved, the boys and girls, both 
white and black, were taught separately; literary 
contests were opened ; annual public examinations 
were made obligatory ; prizes were distributed and 
a powerful incentive was created among all classes 
for the cause of education. Men like Don Desiderio 
Herrera offered to teach a certain number of poor 
children, and to supply them with the necessary 
materials. Herrera afterwards received a pension 
from the patriotic association. 

But though this institution, under the fostering 
influence of Ramirez, obtained certain concessions 
of municipal aid for gratuitous instruction, these 
concessions were soon revoked {Royal Order of Feb- 
ruary, 1824). Public instruction, friend Paco, was 
totally neglected by our government, but the 
patriotism of the Cubans overcame this neglect. 


Do not fail to notice these dates, that you may 
understand our customs and our intellectual status. 

In 1826 there were only 140 schools on the island, 
and of these but sixteen were free. The Sociedad 
Económica after repeated petitions, obtained from the 
municipality of Havana in 1824 one hundred dollars 
for the schools outside the city walls and that only 
as a loan. Such were the meagre resources with which 
the future civilization of Cuba was to be prepared! 

The schools established in the convents to make 
good this paucity proved by their results the poor 
success of the monks in the education of youth. In 
1827 the Socieded Económica succeeded in obtaining 
from the Treasury an appropriation of 8000 dollars 
per annum for the establishment and maintenance of 
new schools. Thus the Colonial Government, which 
here reaped such fabulous wealth to aggrandize the 
Crown, eventually yielded to the repeated supplica- 
tions of a patriotic social organization, and relin- 
quished that miserly sum for this noble purpose. 

During the same period the citizens of Matanzas, 
through the initiative of Don Juan José Aranguren, 
maintained two free schools by subscription. Thus 
the country struggled to regenerate itself in the 
absence of official stimulus or protection; the cause 
of public instruction was sustained only through 
private efforts; it was thus, friend Paco, that we 
reached the middle of the present century, present- 


ing throughout all the towns of the island the 
spectacle which in these brief lines I have endeav- 
ored to sketch. 

In 1836, according to statistics collected by the 
" Society of Friends of the Country" (Sociedad Ami- 
gos del País) and which, by the way, were forbidden 
publication during Tacón's term of office, only 9082 
children were receiving elementary instruction on 
the whole island. This included both sexes and the 
two races and included also the schools supported 
by annuities, by subscription and by individuals. 

If such was the case with regard to elementary 
education, so indispensable for the enlightenment of 
the masses, what could have been the status of 
higher education? 

The two seminaries (that of Havana and that of 
Cuba), constituting the " Pontifical University," 
were almost entirely devoted to the study of 
theology, and did not have in view an advanced 
course of study. Fortunately Cuba had philanthro- 
pists and educators like the Reverend Fathers 
Caballero and Várela, Don Nicolas de Cárdenas y 
Manzano, Chaple, and José de la Luz Caballero. 
The latter was the founder of a great college; under 
his scholarly and patriotic direction other teachers 
were trained, and the Cuban youth received the 
treasures of science and of learning, so sadly needed 
to free them from the dominion of ignorance to 


which they had been subjected. For this reason it 
is, that among the crimes of which Moreno accuses 
de la Luz is that of having taught the Cubans 
without restricting himself to the text books and 
system of the Government. 

Text books ? System ? The scanty portions that 
were given us of these were those of the monks, who 
imported absolutism. 

Until 1841 — until yesterday we might say — the 
giving of a primary education to the poor classes 
was not recognized in Cuba as obligatory on the 
State, but the opposition and neglect of our govern- 
ment was overcome by the perseverance of the 
Cubans whom I have quoted, by the efforts of the 
patriotic societies, by the spirit of the age, and above 
all by the weight of public opinion which manifested 
itself in various ways in the foreign and local press. 
A Board of Education and Committees of Public 
Instruction, general and local, were organized, and 
the maintenance of free schools was imposed on the 
district governments. 

But^ do not cry victory yet, unknown Paco ; 
notwithstanding that in I860 the number of schools 
on the island supported by the municipalities was 
283 for the white, and two for the colored children, 
yet the number of pupils attending them was, in 
view of the increased population since 1836, rela- 
tively smaller than at that date. The schools had 


not increased in proportion to the requirements of 
the people. In the country districts and in many 
of the towns there were none at all. 

Alas! we were subjected to a military govern- 
ment. The cities were presided over and ruled by 
the Deputies of the Governors. Public instruction 
was always neglected or despised by those potentates. 
Besides, the State, which raised in Cuba through the 
tariff on imports twenty-five millions of dollars, had 
not devoted one single cent of it to popular instruc- 
tion, while we Cubans had to defray the cost of 
maintaining Fernando Po as a penal colony for 
political exiles; we had also that same year to con- 
tribute 3,495,700 dollars to the Spanish coffers. We 
were furthermore taxed 2,333,210 dollars to cover 
the cost of re-incorporating San Domingo, and an- 
other 2,500,000 for the senseless Mexican expedi- 
tion. We were not taught to read, Paco, but we 
were made to pay heavily all the same. 

In just this way has the refinement of our people 
been undertaken ; thus have our schools been man- 
aged. The wretched condition of the schools was 
made even worse by the " reformed course of studies " 
of 1863, which was one of the most disastrous meas- 
ures of General Concha's administration up to 1871. 
Must I speak of the famous scheme hatched in that 
year by Ramon de Araistegui, secretary to the Gov- 
ernor General ? It was a neo-catholic conception 


aggravated by political animus ; and its preamble 

clearly reveals the fact that its object was to kill 

education as the fountain head of 

Jr^^\> liberal views and the cause of the 

H é revolutionary movement. 

^pí^RW Shall I remind you that these 

lp\ ÁfH documents declared with unblush- 

^fc\\^i^- * n £ effrontery that in order to 

\W^4k^fc^ iberianize us, to keep us Spanish, 

M ' H : it was necessary to maintain us in 

^ c r/™ 58 -^.™. the grossest ignorance? Shall I 

D. Salvador Zapata. fe » 

picture to you the present state 
of our ruined University ? Shall I refer to the ap- 
pointment of professors, favoring certain predeter- 
mined personages in a manner contrary to the law in 
force ? Must I say that if the primary schools have 
increased in number it is due to the growth of munici- 
palities, but that it is a notorious fact that public 
school teachers are not paid their salaries, and that 
everything here speaks forcibly of the culpable neg- 
lect with which public instruction has been treated?* 

*In 1 883, the primary sehools of Cuba aggregated as follows: 


Havana (Entire Province) .173. . 

11 (City) 33 . . 

Matanzas 95 . . 

Pinar del Rio 82 . . 

Santa Clara 103 . . 

Puerto Principe 24 . . 

Santiago de Cuba 58 . . 

568 267 

Total (exclusive of vacancies), 768 schools. 

101 .. . 

... 8 

83 . . . 

22 . . . 

... 13 

18 . . . 

. 25 

18 . . . 

... 3 

4 . . . 

. . . 3 

21 . . . 

... 15 



No ; let this pass. What I may yet take time to 
remind you is that the country whose profound de- 
moralization has been denounced 
on such meagre knowledge by 
your informant, Moreno, has pro- 
duced many notable examples of 
generous and disinterested phi- 
lanthropists: Not the least among 
them have some broad-minded 
and intelligent Spaniards like 
Salvador Zepata, who left a con- 
siderable estate to the Sociedad 
Económica for the support of free 
schools : his legacy has been zealously guarded by 
that patriotic body and sustains five schools for 
children and adults, of both colors and both sexes.* 


y Delgado. 

*This institution has from its foundation comprised in its 
membership the most earnest men of the community, and 
at its head have figured such men as Ramírez, Peñalvar y 
Cárdenas, O'Fárell, Herrera, Romay, Saco, and Luz Caballero. 

At present the Governing Council of the Society is com- 
posed as follows : 

Director (presiding), 

Vice President, 

Second Vice President, 

General Secretary, 

Second General Secretary, 




José Maria Gal vez. 
José Bruzon. 
Carlos Saladrigas. 
Rafael Cowley. 
Rafael Montoro. 
Carlos Naravetta y Romay. 
Pedro E. G. Larrinaga. 
Alvaro Carrizosa. 

Board of Trustees : Hilario Cizneros, José de Cárdenas y 
Gassié, José Hernández Abreu, Juan B. Armenteros, Manuel 
F. Lamar, and Raimundo Cabrera. 

President of the Section of Education : Antonio A. Ecay. 



Don Francisco de Hoyos, also a Spaniard, founded 
by another legacy a free institution of learning, at 
present in charge of the distin- 
guished Cuban, Prof. Manuel V. 
Rodriguez ; and Doña Susana 
Benítez ensured through the in- 
come of a rich patrimony the 
maintenance of a college for poor 
boys and girls. A philanthro- 
pist, Doctor Bruno Zayas, main- 
tains two free schools out of his 
no. 6o. -D. juan bruno private means ; Don José Alonzo 

de Zayas. r 

y Delgado affords free education 
to over fifty poor children in his intermediate acad- 
emy " San Francisco de Asís ;" 
another woman, Doña Marte 
Abreu de Estévez, has given 
$120,000 for the erection of a 
theatre whose income is devo- 
ted to the maintenance of free 
schools. Don José E. Moré, a 
wealthy planter, has founded 
and endowed with adequate 
means a school of Agriculture ; 
Doña Josefa Santa Cruz de 
Oviedo bequeathed a fortune for 
the construction of a Charity Hospital. The heirs 
of Don Tomas Terry devoted $115,000 to the 

NO. 61. 

D. José Eugenio Moré. 


erection of a theatre in Cienfuegos, the income of 
which is applied to the promotion of primary edu- 
cation. i Doña Antonia, widow of Alfonso Madan, 
maintains a free school in the country. There are 
innumerable other benevolent private institutions 
in this country maintained by private charity. 
Numerous associations for the promotion of educa- 
tion, like the societies " La Caridad," " El Pro- 
greso," " El Pilar," " La Divina Caridad," main- 
tain numbers of free schools, from all of which it 
may well be concluded that a people among whom 
such a spirit is manifest is not a people abandoned 
to vice and immorality.* 

* As further indicating the degree of earnestness with 
which the Cubans endeavor to make good the wretched 
neglect of education by the Colonial Government there may 
yet be cited a number of the more conspicuous examples of 
this spirit. 

Don Miguel Delmonte y Aldama left $10,000 for the pur- 
pose of affording an European education to five pupils in 
agricultural science. Francisco Biszarrón bequeathed $2000 
to the free schools of Güines. Antonio L. Caraballo do- 
nated $1000 for the same object. Belisario Galcerán main- 
tains, out of his own means, the free school of Caunao. 
Miguel Delgado gave $1000 towards the school of Macagua. 
Miguel Matienzo furnishes the means for the maintenance 
of a school of Giianajay. Silvestre Alfonzo left an endow- 
ment for the school at Sabinilla which he founded. The 
Countof Mom pox did "likewise for those of Palos; Rev. Ignacio 
O'Farrell lef: a demesne for the school of Tapaste. Francisco 
Giraldo maintained the school of Sabanicii until the muni- 


cipality took charge of it; Juan Suárez left §4000 for the 
school at Santiago. Rev. Antonio Hurtado established a 
free school at Villaclara, erected the building and donated 
$1000 towards its endowment. He maintained it during his 
lifetime. Rafael Rodriguez Torices ma3 T well be mentioned 
in this connection. He was a Spaniard whose beneficence 
gave full evidence of his appreciation of the country in 
which he had acquired family and fortune. 

In numberless cases throughout the country school houses 
were erected by individuals or by public subscriptions and 
donated to the district authorities on condition that free 
schools be maintained in them. This one fact alone suffices 
to indicate to what a degree private initiative has had to 
make good the neglect of public instruction by the govern- 

See " Quia del Profesorado Cubano," by Mariano Dumas 
Chancel, a Spaniard, and one of our laborious and ill-re- 
warded teachers. 

N<). (32. — BISHOP ESPADA. 




Hospital, of Our Lady of Mercies, Havana. 

The Public Offices.— Chaotic Conditions of the Administra- 
tive System.— Evil Effects of Centralization.— Dishonest 
Officials.— Official Salaries in Cuba. 

The author of "Cuba y Su gente " had inevitably 
to write something that I am not compelled to contro- 
vert. He has declared that public administration on 
this Island " is a perfect chaos" and that it " discredits 
the honor and good repute of the mother country." 
But he who has not hesitated to besmirch Cuban 
society with insults, experiences a profound regret 
in treating of these affairs " superficially, without 
penetrating into the dark corners of each depart- 
ment, of each office." 

Nor shall I dive into them either, not indeed for 


the like reason, 'friend Paco — for the truth should 
be told, though the heavens fall — but because I am 
unaccustomed to delving in our beaurocratic centres ; 
and 1 would do it with repugnance, though they 
present to the observer the most curious spectacle 
which this community has to offer. 

A visit to any of the government offices in this 
country is a source of displeasure and mortification. 
The citizen is there treated with deliberate scorn and 
disrespect and not as a taxpayer who has a right to 
be heard and served. From the pompous porter who 
remains sitting when he is addressed, or refuses to 
admit you, up to the high functionary who turns 
his back upon you without deigning to acquaint 
himself with your request, they all affect the supe- 
riority of masters and assume a tone and manner 
calculated to humiliate the applicant. In every 
grade of the official scale they appear to have the 
consciousness of the joint dominion which they ex- 
ercise by virtue of their hierarchy. The taxpayers 
are the vassals ; they, the feudal lords. 

General Martinez Campos, recognizing this state 
of things, which creates no small amount of ill feel- 
ing, attempted during his term of office to effect an 
improvement, and the enthusiasm for peace and 
the efforts towards adjustment did not die out until 
after he had given up his task. Since then we have 
fallen back into the old rut. 


For this reason, unknown Paco, we will touch on 
this subject only from the outside. I shall not 
trouble myself with the individuals of the immense 
personnel of our administrative system, whom your 
informant in his book names and classifies, with in- 
genuity, indeed. They are not Cubans; they are 
totally unknown; their names (which I trust are 
respectable) and their functions (which I ignore) do 
not concern the object of my letters. What I seek 
to study, analyse, and bring to your cognizance so 
that you may join me in condemning it, is the sys- 
tem, that system which is the fountain head, the 
generating vice of all the vices. 

The system of centralization, the utter absurdity 
of directing from Madrid the administrative machin- 
ery of a country situated nearly 7-, 000 miles away ! 
The gross error of entrusting the management of this 
governmental machine to a minister who ignores the 
requirements, the customs and mode of existence, 
the peculiarities of a people so distant. To such an 
extent does he ignore them that the apparent mis- 
sion of a Spanish politician during his transitory 
reign as Minister, appears to be the study of said re- 
quirements ; studies which are made through that 
retinue of officials that every ministerial change 
brings with it ; the changes merely satiating the 
ambition of Spanish political leaders and their fol- 
lowers with Cuban spoils. It is this and nothing 


else that produces the profound demoralization, the 
irremediable chaos of the administration. 

The evil is antiquated ; it has been studied and 
denounced by many patriots — but the rulers in 
Madrid have put no check on it. The many 
offices of the Colonial administration have been 
invented for the purpose of affording snug berths 
to politicians, and they are reproduced and multi- 
plied within the intricate administrative machine to 
serve as gifts from bosses to their henchmen. It 
were an old story to tell of the many offices which 
have been given with the understanding and on 
condition that the patron is to receive from the 
protege a monthly stipend or annuity in return lor 
the favor shown. Is it remarkable then, that under 
the existing order of things, the office holder usually 
comes to Cuba, risking the dangers of the climate, 
not to render patriotic and distinguished service to 
the state, while gaining an honest living, but to 
accumulate, at all hazards, money which is there- 
after to be enjoyed at the Court or in his native 
town? Is it surprising, under the circumstances, that 
at each step are encountered scandals, such as the 
falsification of the accounts of the Public Debt Com- 
mission or the loss, some fine spring morning, of 
great quantities of Government-stamped paper and 
revenue stamps; or the selling of duplicate-numbered 
tickets of the National Lottery, calling for a prize of 


200,000 dollars; or the clogging of the wheels of 
justice with unfinished cases of defalcations, em- 
bezzlements, stealings, and of public malfeasances of 
every name and nature, known to those initiated in 
the ingenious bureaucratic slang as "chocolates," 
"manganillas," and "nitrations?" 

These evils have one decisive and efficacious 
remedy, for which the country, which is being 
lacerated by so much corruption, is constantly 
clamoring, Autonomy: the administration of the 
country by the country itself; the guardianship of 
their own interests by those who feel and know their 
own necessities — the collecting, the appropriating, 
the disbursing and controlling to be done by those 
who do the contributing and paying. 

Let Cuba cease to be the feeding place for the 
hungry adventurers who cross the Atlantic to obtain, 
quickly and easily, a fortune through their official 
stations. Let the Cubans organize their own 
administration and all, that according to Moreno, 
lowers the dignity and besmirches the good name of 
the country, will vanish in the glory of the nation 
and the well-being of its people. 

The authorities recognize the evil, they see it, 
feel it and deplore it; but they deny the country the 
right to complain. The protest of the Cuban is 
always regarded as subversive; the remedies he pro- 
poses are supposed to tend to separation, and the 


deep rooted evil continues to spread, while Spain 
apparently does not know how, or does not desire, to 
extirpate it. 

Not I, who might be suspected of partiality, but a 
Spanish economist speaks, who treats of these things 
in a book which serves me in my refutations, and 
who like myself, strives in vain to conceal certain 
factors of the problem. In plainly visible characters 
these loom up before him in the loll o wing 


Governor-General . • ." . $50,000.00 

General Manager of the Treasury 18,500.00 

The Archbishop of Cuba 18,000.00 

The Bishop of Havana 13,000.00 

The Chief of the Arsenals and Dock Yards . . . . 18,000.00 

The President of the Court 15,000.00 

The Lieutenant General 15,000.00 

The Governor of Havana 8,000.00 

The First Secretary of the Governor General . . . 8,000.00 

A Field Marshal . 7,500.00 

A Brigadier 4,500.00 

A Colonel . . 3,450.00 

A Lieutenant-Colonel 2,700.00 

The Brigadiers have besides an allowance 

of 500.00 

The Staff Officers, an allowance of .... 375.00 
In the navy a Captain in command of a ship 

receives 6,360.00 

* The reductions which these salaries have suffered, or the 
discounts to which they are subjected according to the law 
on the subject lessen but little the value of these lucrative 


The Captain of a frigate . 4,560.00 

A Lieutenant in command of a first-class ship . . 3,370.00 

" " " of a second-class ship 2,280.00 

A Chief of Bureau, (first class) 5,000.00 

" " " (second class) 4,000.00 

" " " (third class) '. . . 3,000.00 

A Collector of Customs 4,000.00 

A Postmaster 5,000.00 

Governor of the Lottery 4,000.00 

And in each department, furthermore, the director, 
the heads of sections, the various grades of officials, 
the clerks, the porters — an infinite array with infinite 

Item: By the provisions of Article 21 of the Tariff 
Law the right of quarters and the cost of a substitute 
is accorded to many of the employees of the 

Item : The Minister of the Colonies and his sup- 
plies, $96,800.00. 

At the moment while I write these lines the cable 
announces a reform by the reduction of the salaries 
in the new estimates to the half of the quota paid 
heretofore. Futile hope! the same cable announces 
also the speedy adjournment of the Cortes and the 
continuance of the existing salaries. 

But, if the former system was bad when the 
employes were well paid what would be the conse- 
quence if they receive less? What we must do 
is to simplify the administration, do away with 


superfluous offices, lessen the number of public em- 
ployes, and above all, let them not be appointed by 
the Colonial Ministry, and let not the natives of 
the country be excluded from public functions. 
That is all. 




The Judicial System.— Its Demoralization.— Exclusion of 
Cubans from the Judiciary.— The Various Judicial Offices. 
—Their General Corruption.— The Administration of Jus- 
tice a Source of Income to the State. 

The author of Cuba 
y Su gentes has devo- 
ted only three short 
paragraphs to the ad- 
ministration of jus- 
tice. He has not 
wished to " reveal the 
gangrene which cor- 
rupts this bod} 7 ." He 
has, however, abun- 
dantly expatiated on 
the minor magistrates 
and court officials 

who are generally natives of the country and whose 
object he would have us believe is to sow the seeds 
of dissension and demoralization in the public offices. 
He greatly fears that in a little while " the courts 
will be in the hands of the masked separatists." 

But this subject, which he treats with such 
scruple, required more care and all the temerity 
that he displayed in treating of the pretended vices 
of Cuban society and youth. 

Statue of Columbus at Cardenas- 


I, Paco, have neither those fears nor those scru- 
ples, and since I have undertaken the thankless 
task of refuting the senseless reports and statements 
of our affairs which Moreno has published in such 
a prejudiced spirit, I will not rest until I have 
accomplished my purpose. 

I affirm that as we have in Cuba a demoral- 
ized civil government, so we have through like 
causes a vicious administration of justice. It is not 
that we are lacking in laws ; — no ; from the Charter 
of Rights to the latest Recompilation ; from the 
Ordinances of Castile and Arragon to the Royal 
Decrees and Rescripts and Compilations and new 
Codifications, we enjoy in Cuba the same tremend- 
ous conglomeration of laws as in Spain. With all 
the Commissions of Codification — which we pay 
for in great part — it has not been possible to unify 
and straighten out these laws. What we very 
sadly need are Judges; judges in the true sense of 
the word we have very few indeed. 

In countries governed like England and the 
United States written laws are mostly general. 
Considered scientifically, they are even deficient 
or imperfect. But bad judges are rare ; they 
are soon denounced and done away wúth by the 
force of public opinion. In this country, on the 
contrary, the rare instance is the good judge. When 
by some strange coincidence an upright man, of 


a just and impartial character is found among 
the Judiciary, who does not yield to political or 
party influence, or to considerations of wealth or 
station, who proves himself conscious and worthy 
of his high mission, the fact is bruited on every 
tongue and the people everywhere proclaim his 
exceptional incorruptibility. 

Sometimes, however, these conditions are not 
altogether convenient for certain exalted interests; 
the mode of existence of this administrative organ- 
ism is at variance with good, and there have been 
cases where special judges have been appointed when 
the energetic zeal and rectitude of some functionary 
might become troublesome. 

Here, where a privileged class dominates, every- 
thing succumbs to the influence of the rulers. The 
tenure of office is at the caprice of the powerful and 
influential. The functionaries of justice who cross 
the sea to make a living by the exercise of their 
vocation are soon convinced that their personal 
comfort depends entirely upon the managers and 
bosses. Political partisanship has undermined even 
the highest altar of justice, and our judges, with 
the exception of a few good Spaniards, have yielded 
and manifestly continue to give way to this perni- 
cious influence. 

The system of government which exists in Cuba, 
and in which there prevails no other principle than 


that of exclusiveness and favoritism, is opposed to 
the existence of justice. There is perfect solidarity 
and communion among all the functionaries. The 
poison which affects one branch must necessarily 
and by a logical sequence spread to the others. 
There is no severance in their continuity. 

Let there be no fears then that the Courts will 
fall into the hands of the native Cubans, or that the 
immorality of the latter undermine the powers of 
the State. The Cubans are excluded from holding 
the office of judge as from the other offices of the 

The number of those who have figured as such is 
very small. This assertion may be proved by a 
simple arithmetical exercise; add those of the re- 
spective places of nativity and subtract the one from 
the other; the difference will be noticeable. Not one 
Cuban has obtained a position of importance. 

* The defense of the poor and of insolvent criminals is 
made incumbent on the lawyers, solicitors, notaries, etc., 
as a public charge, without any compensation whatever. 
The diverse and arduous duties which these gratuitous 
services entail oblige the unfortunate notaries to incur the 
expense of assistants, clerks, offices, etc., without any 
recompense by the State. Since the publication of this 
work, the Tribunals of Correction and Courts of Criminal 
Arraignment have been established, but the innovations 
have all the shortcomings of the old system — the service is 
poorly endowed and cannot otherwise than fail in a country 
condemned to be exploited and to pay in every possible way. 



The Presiding Judges, Magistrates, Justices, Dis- 
trict-Attorneys and Councillors are appointed by the 
Ministry of the Colonies, — even 
the solicitors and clerks. There 
remain the constables and porters, 
but these must be veterans of the 
military service, and here there is 
no "military" service. 

Just as Araistegui's plan attempt- 
ed to " hispanicize" public in- 
struction, just so is the forum be- 
ing " hispanieized" to-day ; the ex- 
pression is not mine — it is official. 

The offices of notaries public and of official attor- 
neys are retained for the Spaniards ; the birthplace 
invariably decides the question ; so that jurispru- 
dence becomes rather a one sided affair. 

This monopoly accounts for the fact that a 
convict could serve as notary public during a num- 
ber of years and take affidavits in a prominent 
court of justice. 

The municipal judgeships are solicited and given 
as recompense for electoral services rendered to the 
" Constitutional Union" party.* 

-D. Guillermo 

*The municipal courts are deservedly discredited in the 
public mind. But all the blame must not be laid upon the 
personnel of these offices. Our government, while making 
its reforms, has sown the evil, together with all its conse- 


There have been heads of important judicial dis- 
tricts who left the tavern to don the ermine (learned 
and experienced men being put aside for ignorant, 
uncouth Spaniards) and it has been observed that 
though the tavern did not appear to make large 
profits between the sessions of the Court, yet the 
novel judge prospered visibly. 

A law suit of any kind is the cause of great alarm 
to families and invariably means ruin. Both par- 
ties, the right and the wrong, seek rather influen- 
tial recommendation than a good counsellor. We 
frequently see here the case of an insignificant 
tradesman coming suddenly and most unexpectedly 

quences. For instance, there has been imposed on these 
Courts, without compensation, the hearing of criminal 
cases. They have charge of the Civil Register, which by 
virtue of its organization alone requires a numerous person- 
nel, who receive no remuneration. The State does not even 
allow them official quarters, neither for their offices nor for 
the Civil Register, the business and importance of which 
requires a proper location. 

What results must such conditions produce? The same 
or like conditions could be mentioned in regard to the Reg- 
istry of Deeds established by the new Mortgage law of 1880; 
a most useful reform, but which has only served to increase 
the troubles and murmuring» of an impoverished country; 
all because the State has not known how to avoid and pre- 
vent the illegal and scandalous exactions which public 
opinion has denounced. These offices should be supported 
by the State in the same manner as the civil, judicial and 
military administration. 


into possession of valuable plantations, which have 
been fraudulently adjudicated at figures far below 
their value. Who has not seen here the adminis- 
tration of large estates placed by legal procedure, 
without surety, in the hands of men who were 
actually insolvent? 

Alas! the long, interminable series of injustices 
which I could reveal to you. Do not tell me of 
judicial responsibility; the principle of equity is not 
judicially recognized here ; the solidarity of those 
who exploit this vicious system condones the faults 
of individuals. 

It is certain that there is a profound immorality 
in our jurisprudence, but it germinates, spreads, and 
is propagated from the top to the bottom; from the 
superiors to the inferiors and not inversely. It can- 
not be otherwise; the blood circulates from the heart 
to the extremities. 

Let there be good government and there will be 
upright, impartial and zealous judges. Let the 
courts cease to be unipersonal. Let the judicature 
cease to be exercised exclusively by Spanish patri- 
cians ; put an end to summary processes of law ;* 

* Since the publication of the sixth (Spanish) edition of this 
work public oral hearings have been instituted in Cuba, but 
with such meagre recourses and such deficiencies in both form 
and matter that, as stated in a preceding note, the reform is 
a miserable experiment. Each jurisdiction comprises a vast 


corect the evils pointed out in this chapter and the 
disgrace with which the administration of justice is 
branded will cease to exist. f 

Innocent men will not then languish in their 
cells, while villainous wretches stalk abroad, 
insolent in their security. Nor will a high function- 
ary in the pride of his exalted station keep thous- 
ands of criminal suits back year after year, to the 
detriment of those under indictment — because, for- 
sooth, he cannot entrust them to his assistants; nor 
will the prosecutions for embezzlements be super- 
seded for lack of evidence, nor will the documents 
filed against certain functionaries be mislaid and 
never found, nor will the decision of the Supreme 
Court against magnates of the land be altered for 
their benefit — and so on to the end. 

But, my dear Paco, in a country where the 

extent of territory; besides civil matters, the judges of the 
courts of first instance have the hearing of criminal suits 
also; the difficulty of communication, the lack of sufficient 
appropriation for the expenses of the tribunal, everything 
tends to maintain disorder, injustice and chaos. 

t The courts in the metropolis (Madrid), as in other 
civilized countries, enjoy a vacation through the heated sum- 
mer term. Those of Cuba have emulated the former, not 
indeed, out of humanity nor in the cause of hygieue; but the 
sessions are furthermore frequently interrupted by vacations 
capriciously declared without any reason on many occasions 
throughout the year, to the prejudice of justice and the great 
annoyance of the parties concerned. 



administration of justice is not a charge of the state, 
but a source of income for the state; in a colony 
where the budget shows the receipt of $750,000 for 
stamped paper, and only $475,061.20 for the admin- 
istration of justice, there is obtained for the treasury 
a profit of $274,938.80; what other use is there for 
a judicial system, either big or little, high or low, 
intoto or in detail, than money ! money ! money ! 






City Hall,, Havana. 

Local, Government in Cuba.— Its Past and Present.— The Mu- 
nicipalities and their Organization.— Autocratic Admin- 
istration.— The Local Government Law of 1859.— The Re. 
stricted Franchise.— Restricted Powers of the Local 
Councils.— The Law of 1879.— A Semblance of Reform.— A 
Reality of Centralization. 

I shall not attempt the defense of the municipal 
government of Havana nor that of other cities of 
the island. There is not a wheel in our admin- 
istrative machinery which runs smoothly. 

The municipalities but reflect the administration 
of the State. The latter is the basis on which the 
former are planned, the mould in which all are cast. 

If chaos prevails in the State, the municipalities 
may be regarded as dark caverns where no light 

The evil, the profound evil, which afflicts this 
social body in all its aspects is invariably due to the 


same causes — misgovernment, "favoritism, central- 

It is against these causes, and against these evils 
that the country has protested and still cries out in 
anguish, but its voice has always been heard with 
displeasure and disdain, when not peremptorily 

Do you wish me to prove this, Paco? Do you 
wish me to demonstrate how even in the municipal 
sphere the Cuban has been systematically excluded 
from the management of the affairs of the country, 
of his town, and even of his own home? If ever he 
cherished the hope of reaching the distinction of 
taking part in that management, it was but an idle 
dream born of an unfulfilled promise. Do you 
want to know why our municipalities are ruined; 
why they are overwhelmed with debt and scandal- 
ized with defalcations; why their officials are in- 
subordinate; why the public accounts have never 
been in order? Do you want to know why there 
is no sanitation, why we have no paved streets, no 
adequate sewerage, insufficient water, wretched 
lights, no sidewalks nor bridges, no parks, and 
no suburbs, no hospitals nor police service, no 
schools, no libraries, nor anything which by right 
belongs to a people who pay more taxes per capita 
than any other in Spain, or anywhere else in the 
wide world ? Then read again the letters which I 


have already written you, for in them, as far as the 
general government of this land is concerned, the 
greater part has already been explained. As for the 
rest, continue reading, for although with so copious 
and varied a subject I might fill a book, I will drive 
my pen so that a comparatively few paragraphs will 
suffice to point out the remainder. 

Their Catholic Majesties and their descendants, 
Charles I, Philip II, and Philip IV, wished to give 
Cuba — as to their other American colonies — the same 
form of government which the Spanish monarchy 
enjoyed. So it was declared in the Law 2nd, Title 
8th, Book 4, of the Summary of the Laws of the 
Indies; or, as Humboldt observed, they endeavored 
to give a new society the structure of an old nation. 

Of course we had in Cuba the municipal organi- 
zation of the ancient regime, pompously rigged out 
with a Board of Regents composed of a perpetual 
membership of royal appointment, with a lot of 
higher councilmen (Alguaciles mayores) all under the 
exalted direction of a Burgomaster. The executive 
administration was simply a delegation of the 
central power and a privilege of blood, of family, of 
class, and of fortune. 

Let us not speak of the benefits which the com- 
munity at large could reap from such a system. 
Remember, Paco, that under this order of things the 
municipality of Havana in 1824 had not founded a 


single school, and as a loan, afforded the Sociedad 
Patriótica one hundred dollars to assist the latter in 
maintaining those which it had established under 

Until the year 1859 the electoral system did not 
prevail in our municipalities. But do not smile 
with satisfaction in the belief that Mother Spain then 
showed her liberality to these cities. Nothing of 
the kind. The election, if you could call it an 
election, was made exclusively by the richer tax 
payers. The list of these was made up by the Lieu- 
tenant-Governor. To have the privilege of taking 
some part in the local administration it was neces- 
sary to pay a high contributing quota, and so the 
councilmen and other relics of absolutism, with the 
acquired privileges of the old regime, remained 
unmolested. The people were always excluded 
from all participation in public affairs. 

Add to this as a finishing touch, as a crowning 
finial to this rickety political edifice, the fact that 
those who presided over and governed the munici- 
palities so constituted, the lieutenants of the 
governors, were ignorant, despotic, military chief- 
tains, who exercised absolute power in our towns. 

Under this system of irresponsibility, which lasted 
until Jan. 1st, 1879, and which was overthrown 
only by a bloody revolution, the municipal system 
of Cuba had its origin; thus it took root, flourished 


and ripened its harvest of confusion, disorder and 
immorality. The capricious will of the governor 
ruled in each locality, the sword was all-powerful ; 
there were no associations of the people ; instead of 
these there were juntas of rich vassals controlled by 
a feudal despotism. 

A lasting example of this abominable autocratic 
government, a system which the Municipal law of 
1869 did not radically modify, was General Tacon 
in Havana. He is highly praised for his promotion 
of public works, for which money was raised with- 
out stint by imposing taxes on the people, and the 
work carried on by forcing to excessive labor the 
unfortunate soldiery and political offenders from the 
Peninsula. He enriched various individuals and 
contractors through his favoritism, and gratified his 
-excessive pride and vanity by putting his execrable 
name on the works which — like a new Pharao — 
he accomplished with no arbiter but his own 
pleasure, and no limitations but those which he 
himself imposed. 

Similar proceedings were repeated in all the juris- 
dictional centres of the island, under the aegis of the 
law and of an absurd system of administration, by 
those lilliputian viceroys whom Cuba supported 
under the title of Lieutenant-Governors ; odious 
dictators of the local administration, demoralized 
and irresponsible. 



Like General Tacon, they had a vainglorious 
longing to leave their names written or engraved 
as lasting memorials of themselves in the places 
over which they ruled. What Cuban town does 
not possess an unattractive plaza, a wretched market 
place, a defective aqueduct, a miserable fountain, or 
at least some street or tower bearing the name of 
the military governor who ordained its construction, 
who made the appropriation, determined its ap- 
proval, imposed charges on the people and thereby 
began, or increased, or multi- 
plied an hundred fold the de- 
ficit in the municipal adminis- 
tration ? 

On the other hand, there is 
not to be found, in Havana for 
example, a single public square 
or even a commonplace street 
which boasts the name of Luz 
Caballero, of Arango, Cárde- 
nes Manzano, or Escobodo ; of 
Saco, Bernal, Heredia, Placido, 
or of any of the many great sons of Cuba, of its 
litterateurs, philanthropists or educators. 

The Municipalities Law of 1859 is alone sufficient 
to condemn our Colonial system. In each govern- 
mental department we were given a corporation 
consisting of one Mayor {alcalde), one magistrate, 

NO. 69. 


and six aldermen if the population reached the 
number of 5,000 souls; two deputy mayors and ten 
aldermen, if it counted 10,000 ; with the exception 
of Havana, which was privileged to have seven 
deputy mayors, four magistrates or syndics and six- 
teen aldermen. But if the life-aldermen appertain- 
ing to the municipalities covered these respective 
numbers then they alone governed. Remember we 
are dealing w r ith corporate officers, alienated from 
the Crown, with their several and corresponding 
emoluments, honors and perquisites. 

The minor councilmen were elective, but do not 
imagine that the people had a right to nominate 
the men considered worthy of their trust ; no, 
indeed ; the election was made by a number of the 
biggest tax-payers. These electors numbered twice 
as many as the councilmen to be elected, or thrice 
as many if the population exceeded 10,000 souls. 
Three to elect one ! four to elect two ! How nice ! 
But wait a moment ; that was not the final election. 
The electors simply nominated their candidates to 
the Governor-General, who was entirely free to 
accept or refuse the nominees. In this manner, 
amiable Paco, the solicitous and paternal eye of our 
government penetrated to the utmost corner of this 
ungrateful land, placing its seal on the simplest and 
most primitive acts of public life. But the mechan- 
ism did not end here, nor must you believe that 


those bigger taxpayers were electors of themselves 
or by their own right. No ; the lists were formed 
by the Governors or Lieutenant-Governors, together 
with three aldermen and three major contributors. 
As you know what a Lieutenant-Governor was, you 
can easily imagine that he appointed, as he pleased, 
such men as he felt sure would not undertake to 
resist his authority, supposing such a thing to have 
been possible under those lords of the manor. To 
cap the climax we find that all protests regarding 
such appointments were passed upon by himself 
alone, without regard to his associates. Do not sup- 
pose, however, that the electoral process guaranteed 
a free vote even to the major contributors ; consider 
that the ceremony was presided over by the Lieu- 
tenant-Governor in person, and that the vote had to 
be certified through papers made out by himself. 

Woe to the rebel who did not approve the official 
candidate ! 

It naturally followed that each locality had such 
municipal officials as suited the purposes of the 
governor. Each corporation was, in point of fact, 
like an obedient flock of sheep. 

I forgot to mention, and it is no unimportant his- 
torical detail, that only reputable whites, and those 
who were not under the surveillance of the author- 
ities (who were by no means few) were eligible for 


You see, most esteemed Paco, that the Cubans 
had goodly reason to fairly burst with gratitude 
for the zeal which the government displayed in 
freeing them from ail annoyances and care, from all 
concern and trouble, in the organization of their 
municipal corporations. 

Everything was cut and dried for them ; but the 
most satisfactory and gratifying circumstance of all 
was the easy obligations of these administrative 
bodies. What art, what solicitous care in the con- 
coction of the law, and how light the labors of the 
municipal councillors ! 

They were to appoint those officers only whose 
salaries did not exceed $25 per month ; those 
paid more than that sum must be submitted to the 
Governor. In this way the blessed aldermen had 
one worry less and the poor governors one care more. 
The latter were thus forced to consider petitions and 
listen to office seekers and to decide, as was their 
invariable custom, in favor of some nephew, godson, 
relative, friend or recommended individual from 
his province — or from the " Provinces ;" for at that 
time this word had not yet been fully adjusted in 
the colonial geography. 

The councilmen might also attend to the mate- 
rial improvements which the town required, if the 
cost did not exceed $200 ; but anything over and 
above that sum was supposed to be too deep an 


arithmetical problem for the fortunate Cuban alder- 
men, whose comfort and repose was sought at all 
hazards by the kind, paternal government, which, 
with unheard-of abnegation, takes all those hard- 
ships upon itself. 

But even decisions concerning works not ex- 
ceeding f 200 were subject to the approval of the 
Lieutenant Governor and to the sanction of the 

The system was truly delightful ; the " natural 
indolence" of the Cubans w r as thus respected and 
guarded. How could they learn to work under a 
government which spoiled them to such an extent 
and freed them with such tender solicitude from the 
necessity of any effort ? 

Nevertheless, the government had in mind some 
day to take advantage of their slight abilities. In 
order that they might slowly and gently learn to 
deal with public affairs, it graciously permitted the 
councils and corporations to deliberate ; but only to 
deliberate, on the formulation of ordinances, on works 
of utility, on public improvements, on the laying 
out of new streets and other matters ; but if the 
Governor of the department took it into his head to 
ignore these deliberations, then the councillors had 
only wasted their time. 

And all of this, dear Paco, came to pass in Cuba, 
not in the last century, nor prior to the invention 


of railroads ; not before the discovery of the tele- 
graph, nor before the revolution of '68, which the 
Spaniards term " the glorious " and* in which the 
rights of the people were so loudly proclaimed. 

No, my sympathetic friend, this went on until the 
first of January, 1879. Now you can see whether 
the Cubans have been happy, whether they have 
had a chance to receive a -civic education and acquire 
the habits of public life, or if they have had exam- 
ples of administrative morality. 

You smile ? Well, listen : The municipal coun- 
cils could not deliberate on any other matters than 
those determined by law ; they could not proceed of 
their own initiative ; could not even adopt resolutions, 
nor express an opinion on problems of general 
administration ; much less could they publish their 
views without permission from their superiors. 

And how they had to beware of expostulating ! 
On the other hand the military governors, victims of 
their self-denial, were burdened with duties, or rather 
with powers. They presided over and directed the 
municipal corporations, decided the elections, con- 
voked the councils, called to account those who were 
derelict, granted leaves of absence, carried on the cor- 
respondence, commanded in the offices as elsewhere ; 
in short, it was their prerogative to execute decisions, 
make payments, sign the treasury bills (this was 
most interesting), regulate the polls, make appro- 


priations, and so forth. I do not mention (for it 
would be too lengthy) that calamitous invention, 
which, known as "extra assessments" (Derramas), 
would suddenly be precipitated on our taxpayers. 
Felicitous resource for the vicious intermeddlers in 
this system of government. It was under such a 
system of law that municipal life in Cuba had its 

But in spite of these drawbacks the virile and 
patriotic character of the Cubans manifested itself 
constantly in battling against the impositions of the 
central power. The natives of the country were at 
that time the wealthy class, the owners of real estate, 
and of the sugar plantations ; in their hands were 
the landed estates, and they were consequently the 
larger taxpayers on whom the municipal charges 

Although their power was limited and held in 
check, it was to their zealous intervention that the 
increase and improvement of the schools and the 
establishment of other public services was due. I 
examine at this moment the royal decree of Decem- 
ber 29th, 1865, authorizing the foundation of sixteen 
schools solely by the municipality of Colon. 

But the Cuban aldermen were obliged to deal 
with the Lieutenant-Governors, strongly and syste- 
matically supported by the Captain-General ; their 
generous efforts were balked by the artful combina- 


tion of an all-pervading despotic system and the 
solidarity of its ministers. Over and over again 
those struggles, in behalf of municipal interests 
were the real causes of cruel political persecutions 
against many patriots who gave expression to their 
public spirit, and who manifested their enthusiasm 
for the progress of the country in the council de- 

In view of the centralization of the municipal ad- 
ministration, and with the bare semblance of munici- 
pal organization which I have cursorily sketched 
above, is it strange that in 1879 on putting the new 
law in force, and on iuaugurating the newly organ- 
ized councils, all, absolutely all, of the old Lieuten- 
ant-Governors presented empty treasuries and over- 
charged accounts. Deficits, debts, neglected services, 
frauds, starving employes and demoralization every- 

Oh, in those days of transition, hailed so joy- 
fully by the people, we saw 7 as in an illusory mirage, 
the so-called popular Alcaldes take charge of the 
local governments ; the proud Lieutenant-Governors 
give up the city halls — converted into palaces — 
where they had enjoyed at the expense of the mu- 
nicipalities luxurious furniture, golden plate, -rich 
stuffs of a character the most extravagant and least 
necessary for existence. With what faith we believed 


that a new life, full and expansive, had begun for 
the Cuban municipalities ! 

Sad hallucinations of deceptive hope ! the new 
law, promulgated as a provisional enactment, brought 
with it the original evil, the very germ and primary 
cause of demoralization. A few fetters loosened*; 
duties somewhat more divided, the immediate influ- 
ence of the military on the corporations suppressed, 
and the number of municipalities increased ; some- 
thing was certainly gained, but there still remained 
and still remains the centralization of power, the 
tutelage and the prerogative of an almost absolute 
Governor to override all initiative. 

Furthermore, an electoral mechanism which was 
soon to exclude, as it has since done, the natives of 
the country in order to confer the local management 
on the favored Spaniards. 

Not true? Here you have the list of the 

present members of the Havana Board of Alder- 

Francisco F. Ibáñez, Laureno Pequeño, Luis 
G. Corujedo, Ricardo Ricardo Calderón, Idelfonso 
A. de la Massa, Juan A. Castillo, Rafael Joglar, 

*The City of Güines, for example counts 13,000 inhabi- 
tants ; of these 500 are Spaniards and Canary Islanders. 
Notwithstanding this discrepancy, there is not a siugle 
Cuban in the board of Aldermen, and in the electoral registry 
there appear only 32 Cuban as against 400 Spanish electors ! 




'%:■' ' \i ■■' '■• •'■:: 

' h\ 

. 1 




Juan D. Orduña, Pablo Tapia, Bernardo Alvarez, 
Pedro A. Estanillo, Juan Pedro, Serafín Sabucedo, 
Nicolás Serrano, Peregrin G. Martinez, Manuel H. 
Ochoa, Juan B. Ablanedo, Jenaro de la Vega, Fran- 
cisco Salaya, Prudencio Rabell, José M. Galán, An- 
tonio Arenas, Fidel Villasuso, José Rafecas, Eze- 
quiel Aldecoa, José A. Tabares, Manuel P. Melgares, 
Enrique L. Villalonga. 

There are 28 in all. Of these one is a Cuban and 
27 are Spaniards. The Cubans figure in scarce num- 
bers in the so-called Spanish party ; if they hold any 
office it is through favor or recompense, thanks to 
their abjuration of patriotism and to their having 
approved and supported the policies of the ene- 
mies of our liberties. This same condition is re- 
peated in nearly all the towns and corporations of 
the island.* 

*The Provincial Deputation of Havana is composed of 20 
deputies, who at the present time are the following: Anto- 
nio C. Telleria, President. Leopoldo Carvajal, Antonio 
Corzo, Celso Golmayo, Amilio A. Prida, Fernando de Castro, 
Fernando S. Reinoso, Narcisso Galats, Serapio Arteaga, 
Julián Chavarri, Jorge Ferrán, Joaquín Ginerés, Miguel 
Ochoa, Mariano de la Torre, Manuel Carrascosa, Rafael Val- 
lanueva, Antonio Govin, Gabriel Casuso, Gabriel del Cristo, 
Raimundo Cabrera, (a.) The first 16 belong to the Conser- 

(a.) Since the publication of this work, through the new 
elections under the exclusive system in force, the liberal 
Cuban deputies in the department of Havana have dimin- 
ished in number. To-day there remain only Antonio Govin, 
Gabriel Casuso and Antonio Messa. 


I can prove to you by figures, and by means of 
scrupulously exact statistics, that less than twenty- 
five per cent, of the Mayors of the Island are 
Cubans, the rest being Spaniards. Are they not ap- 
pointed by the Captain General ? The same thing 
may be said of the Councils, and if you keep in 
mind that the census shows 850,000 white natives, 
and 140,000 Spaniards and Canary Islanders, it 
must be obvious that a system of monopoly and 

vative party, which has given majorities to only three 
Cubans ; the rest are Spaniards. The last four are Autono- 
mists and Cubans. This party succeeded in 1882 in holdiug 
the majority of this deputation, but the official element 
soon robbed them of this advantage ; the former went to the 
extreme carrying by bribery the election in one district and 
usurping the seat of the Deputy elected for Alquizar (Don 
Ricardo del Monte) . These proceedings went without repar- 

It is proper to state that our provincial deputations, with- 
out means or proper resources, without a sphere of action, 
and without power of initiative, have been, and are still 
among the unfulfilled promises of reform made since the 
peace of Zanjón. The deputations are but useless wheels in 
our administrative machinery, created only to give employ- 
ment, or rather salary, to the numerous idle officials whom 
the law imposes upon our impoverished municipalities. 

The deputation of Havana, for example, has an expense 
budget of $100,000 ; it was formerly much greater, having 
reached $200,000, but was reduced through the impossibility 
of putting it into practice. The deputation occupies a 
palace, sustains three very costly offices, and allows for 
"expenses of representation " $2,500 ! 


favoritism exists, and that the Cubans are not re- 
sponsible for the corruption of our municipalities. 

These assertions are not dictated by a blind love 
for Cuba. After the peace of Zanjón, in the days 
when warm words of concord were written in the 
official documents, when in many places the conser- 
vative element relaxed its hold on the electoral 
machinery, it was possible to obtain true representa- 
tions. The Cubans by right of contribution ap- 
peared in the registries and obtained legitimate rep- 
resentation in many towns. 

But when the spasmodic reconciliation was over, 
the monopoly began anew ; the Government in all 
its branches neither neglected nor did it hide its 
design. Cuban Alcaldes were deposed, the council- 
lors put down, the electors excluded from the registry, 
nor have their formal protests elicited justice any- 
where. The Government has gone even to the length 
of showing such hatred and injustice as to grant 
universal suffrage without distinction of age to the 
Spaniards, while the Cubans were little less than 
prohibited from voting. 

This, friend Paco, is our past and our present. 
What can be expected of the Cuban municipalities ? 
What can be their future promise in a country where 
the State drains all the vital forces of the people, 
and the municipality does not offer advantages even 
to the favored ones who exercise the council duties ? 


It leaves them only the vanity of being the over- 
seers in a system which works everything for the 
master ; neither have they the satisfaction of eleva- 
ting and purifying their "homes in the midst of a 
people whom they do not govern, but of whose ex- 
ploitation they become accomplices. 




No. 71. The Temple Monument (El Templete), Havana. 

National Cuban Representation.— Historical Sketch of the 
Institution.— Antagonism of the General Government. — 
Military Despotism Intensified. — Movement for Reform. — 
Commission of Inquiry Appointed. — Failure of the Commis- 
sion. — The Insurrection of 1868.— The Compromise of Zanjón 
in 1878. — Concessions by the Government. — New Basis of 
Representation.— The Elections.— Gerrymandering by the 
Government. — Misrepresentation and Repression of the 
Cuban Element.— The Necessity of Autonomy. 

As I will now proceed to consider the Represen- 
tation of Cuba in the Cortes, let us pause a moment, 
Paco, to cast a retrospective glance on the political 
constitution of Cuba. Moreno has given us occa- 
sion for slight sketches of our history, such as the 
character of these letters renders possible ; these 
sketches may serve to prevent your being led astray by 
his notations and also to instruct our countrymen. 

You must be aware that we Cubans have at times 


absolutely, and at others partially, been excluded 
from the Spanish Parliament — and continue so to be. 

This is an assertion which I shall endeavor to 
explain so that you may better understand it. 

Until 1837 Cuba enjoyed legislative rights and 
accordingly participated in legislative functions, 
but never in the manner and to the extent due the 
country. From 1837 to 1879 we were absolutely 
deprived of representation in the General Legisla- 
ture. Since 1879, although it may appear that our 
right of representation in the Cortes is recognized, 
and although there are Cuban representatives in 
both Congress and Senate, nevertheless Cuba is not 
in reality represented there, nor are the few who 
ostensibly represent the Island listened to. The 
absurd system of monopoly which has crushed us 
down was maintained by surreptitious political 
means, by electoral combinations, and by such 
schemes as have always characterized the Madrid 
Colonial Administration. Among these, the policy 
of parliamentary obstruction, of which the Govern- 
ment gave ur pleasant proofs in the last legislature, 
is the most striking. 

After you have learned something of these mat- 
ters, even though but passingly, it will not be neces- 
sary to tell you that the Cuban deputies, — that is to 
say, those of them who have really endeavored to 
care for the interests of Cuba in the General Legisla- 


ture, have never at any period gone to Madrid to 
obtain or solicit appointments and favors ; they have 
gone to seek some way of redeeming their oppressed 
country. If they obtained anything, it was, occa- 
sionally, persecution and exile, as happened to 
Várela and Saco, or again, contemptuous treatment, 
like that which befell the commissioners of 1865. 
The one fact, of which they always became con- 
vinced, was that while the Spanish politicians may 
understand their colonies, while they perhaps study 
them — which I doubt — they trouble themselves 
neither with the present nor the future interests of 
their charges. 

In the 17th century, during the prevalence of the 
assimilating tendencies which continued until 1808, 
and which are manifested in the " Laws of the 
Indies," Cuba had a semblance of representation in 
the shape of Juntas de Procuradores, appointed by 
the people to deal with the affairs of the Island. 

The Junta of Notables which met in Seville in 
1808, during the calamitous troubles of the country, 
proclaimed unity of rights for the Spaniards of both 

The Royal Decree of Feb. 14th, 1810, issued on 
the Island of Leon through the Council of Regency 
in the name of Ferdinand VII, " considering the 


grave and urgent necessity of having the Spanish 
dominions in America and Asia represented in the 
extraordinary sessions of the Cortes," convoked the 
Cubans to the National Congress. 

One deputy was to be elected for each district 
capital. Havana and Santiago de Cuba had each 
one representative. The elections were to be made 
by the City Councils " choosing first three natives of 
the country who must be honest, intelligent, educated 
and free from all stain," afterwards choosing one of 
these by lot; "the one first drawn to be Deputy 
to the Cortes." Pay strict attention, Paco, to these 
words of the law. The first deputies were required 
to be natives of the country ; a requisite not neces- 
sary now. The law at present is such as to permit 
the deputies to represent anything and everything 
conceivable except Cuba. 

In those first elections by the City Council of 
Havana, August 6th, 1810, distinguished men like 
Francisco Arango y Parreño, Andrés de. Jáuregui, 
and Pedro Regalado Pedroso were chosen, the lot 
falling to the second. He and Juan Bernardo 
O'Gavan, elected by Santiago de Cuba, took part 
in the drafting of the constitution of the year 
1812, in which no apparent distinction is made 
between the European and American Spaniards. 
The Marquis of San Felipe y Santiago, and Joaquin 
de Santa Cruz had previously acted as substitutes. 


During that brief period of constitutional govern- 
ment Cuba enjoyed its advantages ; a division of 
civil and military powers was effected ; provincial 
deputations and constitutional municipal councils 
were established ; liberty of the press was accorded ; 
educated judges were appointed, and the fetters of 
centralization were materially relaxed. 

In 1813 Francisco Arango y Parreño was elected 
Deputy. Through his determined efforts were 
effected the important economic reforms which 
raised the commercial interests of Cuba' from the 
prostrated condition in which they were languish- 
ing. The continental war ■ in South America un- 
doubtedly inclined the government to a policy of 
attraction towards Cuba, but it was mainly owing to 
the constant solicitude and powerful influence of this 
able man that when the absolute system of Govern- 
ment was re-established by the decree of May 4th, 
1814, Cuba suffered less than the other parts of the 
monarchy by reason of the restored despotism. In 
consequence of the restoration of this regime the Dep- 
uties elected March 14th, 1814, by the Municipality 
of Havana, Messrs. Juan J. D. de Espada, Juan 
Bautista Armenteros and Count Montalvo were not 
permitted to take their seats in the Cortes. 

After the revolution headed by Riego the Cubans 
again participated in the benefits of a constitutional 



On August 22, 1820, Havana elected as Cuban 
Deputies Lieutenant-General José de Zayas, Magis- 
trate José Benitez, and Antonio Modesto del Valle. 
Santiago de Cuba elected Juan O'Gavan. 1 

In 1822 the election fell to the Rev. Felix Várela, 
of blessed memory, Leonardo Santos Suarez, both 
Cubans, and Tomas Gener, a Spaniard whose name 
is cherished by Cubans among those of her benefac- 
tors. To this epoch may be traced the beginning 
of the class distinction between Cubans and Spani- 
ards, a distinction which was brought about by 
the monopolizing intruders. 

Again the liberal institutions 
of Spain fell, this time through 
intervention of the French armies, 
and until the promulgation of the 
Royal Statute we ceased to have 
a representation in the Cortes. 
That Statute was promulgated in 
Havana June 5th, 1834 ; but 
although, with much official blus- 
ter they had a brillliant illumi- 
nation, erected arches and cele- 
brated fetes, the country saw with profound dis- 
content that so far as Cuba was concerned there 

No. 72. 
D. Tomás Gener. 

1 The election of the last two was declared null and void 
because colored persons had taken part in the election and 
on account of other defects in the electoral lists. 



was little or nothing to be expected from it. It 
discriminated against the Colonies as regards the 
electoral laws and freedom of the press, and the 
right to organize a militia was denied. The Mili- 
tary Commissions, and the unlimited powers of the 
Captain-General remained in force. 

Thus was marked out the dividing line which 
separated into classes the subjects of one govern- 
ment, the people of a common 
country. The life councillors 
appointed the following six Pro- 
curators for Cuba, who took their 
places in the representative body 
(Estamento) : Andrés Arango, 
Juan Montalvo y Castillo, Pru- 
dencio Echavarría, José Serapio 
Mojarrieta, Sebastián Kindelán. 

The Queen appointed as mem- 
bers of the upper house (proceres) Miguel Tacon, the 
Counts of Villanueva, Fernandia, and O'Reilly, and 
the Marquis of Candelería de Yarayabo. 

In 1836 the constitution of the year '12 was again 
promulgated in Spain. General Tacon was govern- 
ing in Cuba with unlimited powers. In his un- 
bridled despotism he ignored the laws and the very 
constitution, suppressing its proclamation in Santi- 
ago de Cuba by General Lorenzo. He was truly 
the well chosen instrument of the oppressive policy 

No 73.— D. Francisco de 



which had begun its effects in 1820, which, in 1836, 
had already resulted in the independence of the 
other Spanish-American countries, and now had 
become developed in all its horrors. 

Amid the contradictory proposals which were 
propounded at that period regarding the participa- 
tion of the Antilles in the Cortes, a measure which 
accorded that right was accepted, but with restric- 

In the Peninsula one deputy was to be elected 
for each 50,000 inhabitants. In Cuba it was decided 
that only four should be elected, when according to 
the number of the white population nine was due 
to it. 

In the meantime the despot Tacon sent with a 
great flourish a military expedition to Santiago and 
there imprisoned, exiled and persecuted all those 
who had joined General Lorenzo in proclaiming the 
constitution of 1812, which was already in force in 
the Peninsula. Three successive elections took 
place, and the following were chosen to represent 
Cuba in the Constituent Assembly: 

José Antonio Saco, Francisco de Armas, Juan 
Montalvo y Castillo, Nicolás Escobedo. 

The fatal policy of Tacon and his dictatorial 
actions were approved in the metropolis, despite 
the strenuous efforts of Don Porfirio Valiente, 


commissioner from Santiago de Cuba and of General 
Lorenzo as well. 

We now reach, my dear friend, that period of our 
history in which the very furies were let loose; in 
which all scruple was set aside; in which was 
manifested all the rancor and hatred with which 
our rulers have ever regarded the liberties of 
Spaniards born in the colonies.* 

Until now, Cuba had either lacked importance, 
or had been something like a general barracks for 
the armies engaged in suppressing revolutions on the 
Continent. The relative degree of freedom which 
Cuba enjoyed was rather tolerated than granted, 
with the view to securing the fidelity of the inhabi- 
tants and at the same time to utilize it as a blandish- 
ment for the rebellious American countries ; but 
never because of a sincere conviction that political 
liberty was at all desirable in the Colonies. 

It is not I who say so, Paco ; Sr. Sancho revealed 
all this in open Parliament, in the Constituent As- 
sembly of April 2, 1837 : " The government has 
never held the opinion that deputies should be sent 
from America ; it has been considered as an evil 
which it was necessary to cut short 

*It was even considered as dangerous, (and prohibited by 
Royal Order of the Madrid government) to deport to Cuba 
the liberal Spanish political prisoners. The propaganda of 
their doctrines in the enslaved Colony would be undesirable. 


Their advent was a calamity." ..." Since 
1812 it has been proposed that the Constitution 
should not there be operative" ..-.." and it 
was resolved that the smallest possible number of 
Deputies should come from those countries." . . . 

The Spanish historian Zaragosa — whom you will 
surely not regard as partial — has fully recognized 
these facts. See his work on Cuban Insurrections, 
page 413. 

In the session of February, 1836, the Cortes 
accepted the report of a select commission inspired 
by its leaders, Arguelles, Sancho and Heros, by 
which it was resolved to no longer admit the Depu- 
ties from the Colonies. 

The energetic protest of the Cuban deputies, 
drafted by Saco, served only to show to advantage 
the patriotic energy of our representatives. The 
unjust despoliation was ratified. To the adoption 
of this measure the rabid reports of Tacon contrib- 
uted not a little. 

From this date on, the political constitution of 
Cuba became established in accordance with the de- 
cree which I submit for your analysis below. This 
decree together with the unlimited powers of the 
Captain Generals — " Governors of cities in a state 
of siege" — was to delight a people who had been 
sarcastically termed the "ever faithful." 


"The Secretary of the Department of the Navy, 
Commerce, and the Government of the Colonies 
conveyed to this office on the 22nd inst., the com- 
munication following : To the governing Captain- 
Generals of the Islands of Cuba and Porto Rico I 
herewith communicate the following Royal Order : 
Her Majesty the Queen Regent has deemed it proper 
to resolve that, in the remission to your Excellency of 
the accompanying Royal order of the 19th inst., in 
which you are instructed to make public the dispo- 
sition of the Cortes, to the effect that the Provinces 
of America and Asia be governed and administered 
under laws especially adapted to their respective 
locations and circumstances and proper for the 
promotion of their welfare, in consequence whereof 
the said Provinces will cease to be represented by 
Deputies in the Cortes, your Excellency be advised 
as follows: 1st: Her Majesty having in mind the 
opinions and desires of the majority of the inhabi- 
tants of those provinces, manifested on all occasions, 
and very particularly through the multitude of 
petitions made in consequence of the events in San- 
tiago de Cuba, cannot doubt but that the adoption 
of the aforesaid measure will be applauded and sat- 
isfactory ; but as it may also be distasteful to the 
wicked, ivho under the semblance of desiring a liberty 
tuhich they do not understand, aspire to some other 
object, damnable and prejudicial to their own safety 
and interests, her Majesty desires that your Excel- 
lency for these reasons redouble your vigilance to 
such end as may best suit the tranquility and 
safety of the country, acting with as much discre- 
tion as energy, and always in accordance with the 


laws, so that should the malcontents take steps of 
a nature such as might disturb the public peace, 
they may be subject to the judgment of the compe- 
tent Tribunals. 2nd: That inasmuch as in con- 
sequence of the said resolutions of the Cortes it 
naturally follows that these provinces shall con- 
tinue to be governed by the laws of the Indies, by 
the ordinances and Royal orders issued for their 
observance, and by such as may in the future be 
considered as conducive to the prosperity of the 
country ; your Excellency will see that those laws 
be rigidly enforced, and that no measures adopted 
in the Peninsula be promulgated in the Colonies un- 
less communicated to your Excellency by the proper 
Minister with the express purpose that it be executed 
and fulfilled on the Island under your charge. 3d : 
That as the Colonies should be ruled and admin- 
istrated by special laws, conformable to their condi- 
tions and calculated to ensure their happiness, the 
higher authorities should assist the government of her 
Majesty by adopting in their respective departments 
such measures as they may conceive will obtain this 
important object. And 4th : That considering 
that the liberty of the press shall not be permitted 
in that country, your Excellency will take great 
care that the censure be exercised with the greatest 
discretion and in such manner that it does not pre- 
vent the publication of writings which serve to 
instruct the public, nor permits those which in any 
way endanger the tranquility and safety of the 
country, the honor of the Spanish Government, and 
the just national cause ; this same vigilance should 
extend to the introduction and circulation of 



pamphlets, newspapers and writings, printed in 
other countries. Her Majesty relies on the well- 
known zeal of your Excellency for the good use you 
will make of these advices, communicated by Royal 

"All of which is herewith transmitted to your 
Excellency for your information, etc. 

"God keep your Excellency many years." 

Madrid, April 25th, 1837. 

Facundo Infante. 

What followed upon this Royal order I have 
already sketched for you in my references to our 
political parties. 

The military system in Cuba gave rise to excesses 
of every kind, not the least being the infamous 
contraband slave trade carried on and tolerated in 
violation of existing treaties. So rigorous did this 
despotic military rule become that it gave rise to 
spasmodic agitations and frequently repeated strug- 
gles of the suffering people, who sought their salva- 
tion through conspiracies and insurrections. 1 

1 In 1823 was discovered the vast conspiracy known as 
Los Soles de Bolivar, whose object was to establish the 
Cuban Republic, and in 1830 that of the Black Eagle with 
the same object. 

In 1850 were made the attempts of Narciso López. His 

object was to assist the revolt of the Separatists. The second 

and last attempt had been aided in the central districts by 

Joaquin de Agüero, and in Las Villas by Isidoro Ármente- 




Verela and Saco, the favorite Deputies under the 
old regime ohtained the laurels of proscription ; for 
others, less fortunate, were re- 
served the dungeon and the 
scaffold. As Saco observes : 
" Talent, learning, probity, and 
patriotism, qualities so prized 
in other countries, were in 
Cuba considered unpardonable 

Even the Spaniards residing 
in Cuba raised their voices in 
righteous indignation against 
that intolerable system. Emi- 
nent men in Madrid clamored in the tribune and 
in the press against such outrageous injustice and 
corruption. Among these men I will mention 
Olózaga, who in the Constituent Assembly of 
1854 pleaded for justice for the Cubans ; Araujo 
de Lira, Julián de Zulueta and other merchants 

NO. 74. 

General Narciso Lopez. 

ros, who were executed together with other Cubans, Agü- 
ero in Puerto Principe and Armenteros in Trinidad. Gen- 
eral López suffered death by the garotte in Havana. 

In 1855 the conspiracy known as that of Pintó was discov- 
ered. He also was garotted in Havana and many others 
were punished. Several Separatist, Abolitionist and Annex- 
ationist revolts of lesser importance followed. See Chapters 
7 to 12 of Vol. I and Chapter 2 of Vol. II of Don Justo Zara- 
goza 's work, Las insurreciones de Cuba. 



NO. 75. 
General Francisco Serrano. 

established in Havana sent in an earnest memo- 
rial praying for the restitution of the political 
representation of Cuba in 
Parliament. Also Dionisio 
A. Galiano, who in a pam- 
phlet wherein he could not 
altogether shake off the com- 
mon prejudices of all who be- 
longed to the Spanish party, 
proposed decentralizing re- 
forms; Ramón Just, who with 
greater impartiality and a 
higher criterion, formulated 
a brochure entitled the "As- 1 * 

pirations of Cuba" (Las aspiraciones de Cuba); Félix 
de Bona, Eduardo Asquerino, editor of La América, 
and others to whom I, as a Cuban, do not begrudge 
the gratitude due to them. They honestly sought to 
better the condition of the country, though perhaps 
not to the full extent that its necessities demanded. 
A similar debt of gratitude will ever be due by 
Cuba to Captain Generals Francisco Serrano and 
Domingo Dulce, who ruled successively from 1860 
to 1865. The tolerance, the marked degree of in- 
terest, which our misfortune awoke in them, 
contrasted strongly with the monstrous dictator- 
ship begun by Tacon and maintained since his 
time. Under their command the oppressed people 



felt the halter loosen. But with all this their rule 
had always one essential defect ; the same defect 
which that of Martinez Campos had later on, and 
that was, that the system it- 
self was not modified and that 
the very mildness of the rule 
was arbitrary in its nature. 

It having become possible 
to hold a political banquet in 
Havana, such a demonstra- 
tion was organized as a com- 
pliment to the editor of La 
América, as representative of 
the press of Madrid. On this 
occasion 20,000 Cubans signed 
a letter addressed to General Serrano as a testimonial 
of gratitude for his efforts in behalf of Cuba in the 
Senate, and a memorial to the Queen requesting 
the greatly desired reforms. 

The reactionaries, misnamed "The Spanish Party," 
could no longer remain impassive in the face of 
these eloquent demonstrations. The iron rule of 
Tacon suited them better than the advance of lib- 
erty. Their newspapers — El Diario de la Marina 
taking the lead — combated the reforms; the party 
formulated a counter petition to the throne and sent 
commissioners to Madrid to carry out their purpose. 
These various efforts, the retreat from Santo Do- 

no. 76. 
General Domingo Dulce. 



NO. 77. 
D. José Morales Lemds. 

mingo, the Spanish war in the Pacific, the general 
progress of the Colony, and above all, the termina- 
tion of the civil war in the 
United States, rendering the 
continuation of the slave trade 
impossible, brought about the 
Royal Decree of November 
25, 1865. This authorized the 
Minister of the Colonies to in- 
stitute a formal inquiry on the 
social, economic and political 
reforms necessary for the gov- 
ernment of Cuba and Porto 
Rico. This Decree was re- 
ceived with rejoicing throughout the land, although 
its limitations and tendencies revealed a want of 
political sincerity, and the intention to retain the 
special laws ; at the same time it clearly showed the 
real or affected ignorance of the Government con- 
cerning the requirements of a country which its pre- 
decessors had founded and which it now adminis- 

This want of sincerity manifested itself from the 
first moment. The election of Commissioners, ac- 
cording to the royal decree, was to take place in the 
mode and manner prescribed for that of the muni- 
cipal councilmen ; that is, by the higher tax- 
payers classified into three groups of equal num- 



No. 78. 

D. Nicolás azcárate. 

bers ; 1st, landed property ; 2nd, commerce and 
industry, and 3rd, the professions. This classifica- 
tion was modified by a decree 
of the Captain General, organ- 
izing four electoral groups, 
equal in number : 1st, urban 
and rural real estate ; 2nd, in- 
dustries ; 3rd, commerce ; 4th, 
professions. The new combi- 
nation had the obvious pur- 
pose of diminishing the ma- 
jority of native voters and re- 
formers, who controlled the 
landed estate and professional vote, by doubling the 
number of the electors arrayed against the reforms, 
that is, the Spaniards, in whose hands commerce 
and the urban industries had always 

This duplicity was made the sub- 
ject of a demonstration by the coun- 
cils of Havana and of Cardenas; the 
former was supported by the Count 
of Pozos Dulces, José Silverio Jor- 
rin, and José Bruzón, Sr., who 
placed themselves in opposition to 
Señores, Rato, -Ibáñez and Ochoa. 
In Cardenas the opposition was supported by Car- 
rera. But the highest authority of the island and 

NO. 79. 

D. Calixto Bernal. 



the Supreme Court severely reprimanded these 
councils and warned them to refrain in the future 
from adopting any resolutions, or formulating and 
giving circulation to opinions regarding matters of 
government - and administration. Such was their 

Is it not true, esteemed Paco, that all this, of 
itself, afforded a sufficient assurance 
of the little or nothing which the 
people of Cuba were to expect from 
their rulers at this juncture? 

In spite of these measures, and of 
the official partiality, the Cuban 
element triumphed at the elections ; 
and this notwithstanding that the 
censors stifled the voice of reform ex- 
pressed through the columns of the 
famous periodical, " El Siglo" (The 
Century), edited by the acknowledged chief of the 
Reformists, the beloved Count of Pozos Dulces. We 
could not then speak of parties. Party organization 
was not permitted by the government. 

The following were appointed as Commissioners : 

Havana. — Manuel de Armas and Antonio X. de 
San Martin. 1 

NO. 80. 
D. Rafael Fer- 
nández de Castro. 

1 This candidate was opposed by the Count of Pozos 
Dulces, who was defeated by a vote of 50 against 47. 


Matanzas. — José L. Alfonzo, Marquis of Móntelo ; 
he resigned and José M. Ángulo y Heredia was 

Cuba. — José Antonio Saco. 

Colón. — José Antonio Echeverría. 

Pinar del Río. — Manuel Ortega. 

Puerto Príncipe. — Calixto Bernal. 

Cienfuegos. — Tomás Terry. 

Villa Clara. — Antonio F. Bramosio, who was also 
elected by Cardenas and chose the latter mandate. 
The Count of Pozos Dulces was appointed in his 

Holguin. — Juan Munné. 

Sagua. — The Count of Vallellano. 

Cardenas. — Antonio F. Bramosio. 

Remedios — José Morales Lemus. 

Guiñes. — Nicolás Azcárate. 

Sancti-Spiritus. — Augustín Camejo. 

Guanajay. — Antonio R. Ojea. 

At the same time the government appointed as 
members of the Commission persons who were no- 
toriously opposed to the reforms, and this in equal 
numbers to those elected by the aldermanic boards. 
Continue, Paco, to analyze these measures, for I 
limit myself to facts and make no comments. 
These facts are very eloquent, and are of themselves 
an effective criticism of our Colonial administration 
and of the injustice of our authorities. 



NO. 81. 
Bebnardo Portuondo. 

The president of the Commission (Junta) was also 
appointed by the government so that the delibera- 
tions should be directed ac- 
cording to his discretion. The 
commissioners were to respond 
to the questions formulated 
by the government and — the 
sessions were to be secret. 
Full of doubts, though flat- 
tered with honeyed words of 
governmental assurance, the 
undaunted sons of Cuba 
crossed the water, leaving 
family, country and interests, to battle against num- 
berless deceptions and annoyances. They fulfilled 
their mission, answering with 
truth, loyalty, and thorough scien- 
tific learning the questions formu- 
lated by the Supreme Govern- 
ment. Their work made a proud 
record for Cuba, and furnishes a 
brilliant testimonial of the patriot- 
ism and culture of its people. 

Of what followed this investiga- 
tion, Paco, I have already in- 
formed you in a previous letter. 

Far from obtaining a remedy for its deep rooted 
evils, Cuba only obtained an increase of taxation 

NO. 82. 
D. Gabriel Millet. 


and the government of General Ler- 
sundi, a disciple of Tacón, who 
wished again to drown in blood the 
liberal and generous spirit of an 
American people. And then came 
Yara and the War; the spontane- 
ous revulsion of a people weary un- 
no. 83. to death of the vampires of exploit- 

benté. ation, overwrought with suffering 

and stung with taunts — ten years of ruin and of 
tears — and then, in 1878, the Peace of Zanjón. The 
conferences which brought the war to a close resulted 
in an agreement as follows : 

The Compromise of Zanjón. 

"Article 1. Concession to the Island of Cuba of the same 
political, organic and administrative privileges accorded to 
the Island of Porto Rico. 

"Article 2. Forgetfulness of the past as regards political 
offences committed from 1868 to the present, and the am- 
nesty of all at present under sentence for such offenses 
within or away from the Island. Full pardon to deserters 
from the Spanish army, irrespective of nationality; includ- 
ing all who had taken part directly or indirectly in the 
revolutionary movements. 

"Article 3. Freedom to the Asiatic coolies and the 
slaves who are now in the revolutionary ranks. 

"Article 4. No one who by virtue of this convention 
recognizes and remains under protection of the Spanish 



Josk María CaRbonell. 

government, shall be compelled to 
render any military service until 
peace be established throughout the 

"Article 5. All persons affected 
by these provisions who desire to 
leave the Island without stopping 
in any town, shall receive the aid of 
the Spanish government to that end. 

"Article 6. The capitulation of 
the forces shall take place in the open 
field, where preferably the arms and 
other implements of war shall be relinquished. 

" Article 7. The General-in-Chief of the Spanish army, 
in order to facilitate the disposition of the several eections 
of the Cuban army, will place at their disposal the rail and 
steamship facilities at his command. 

" Article 8. This agreement with the Central Committee 
is to be considered general and without special restrictions, 
extending to all the departments of the island accepting 
these conditions. 

Camp of San Augustin, February 10, 1878. 

E. L. Luaces. 
Kafael Rodriguez, Secretary. 

Following this was promulgated provisionally, 
for Deputies to the Cortes, the electoral law of 
July 20th, 1877, and subsequently that of Janu- 
ary 28th, 1879. 

In accordance with these laws Cuba has political 


representation, and as in the Peninsula, one deputy 
is appointed for every 50,000 souls ; only that here 
the elections are made by districts or provinces, a 
form which assures the majority to the Spanish 
tradespeople and merchants in the capitals and 
mercantile centres. Thus Cuba is represented by 
8 Deputies for Havana ; 3 for Pinar del Rio ; 3 
for Matanzas ; 5 for Santa Clara ; 1 for Puerto 
Principe ; 4 for Santiago de Cuba : Total, 24. 

But do you suppose, Paco, that it was the realiza- 
tion of terrible mistakes, a sentiment of justice, or a 
purpose of giving the people desired satisfaction, — 
do you think it was these considerations that pre- 
vailed to restore Cuban representation in the Cortes? 

No ! The reforms which followed the Peace of 
Zanjón had the same lack of sincerity which has 
always characterized our administration. 

The electoral machinery, perfectly calculated to 
assure the triumph of the bureaucratic and Penin- 
sular elements has maintained and continues to 
effect the exclusion of the country from national 

But why stop to explain these and the other 
legal and official machinations which were brought 
into play in the concoction of the registry ? It is 
sufficient for you to know that more than one 
million Cubans have only eight deputies in the 
Cortes ; two of these, thanks to the disinterestedness 


with which four " Conservative" deputies have given 
up their seats to accept more lucrative positions ; 
that 140,000 Spaniards and Canary Islanders have 
16 so-called "Cuban" representatives ; and that in 
the populated provinces like Pinar del Río, Ma- 
tanzas, and even in that of Havana, the Cuban ele- 
ment has sometimes no representation whatever ! 

While the general tax of $25 is exacted as a 
franchise qualification in lieu of the tax on real 
estate, the hordes of employes enjoy the franchise 
without taxation, and the same privilege applies to 
those who are recognized as being members of any 
mercantile company. These artifices I have pointed 
out in my letter on municipal affairs, and I will 
avoid a repetition. If you should ever find a 
Cuban, to whom the Spaniards have given their 
votes, you may be sure that he has afforded adequate 
proof of having forgotten his origin, and even this 
meagre concession has notoriously fallen into disuse. 

Behold the evidence in the following exhibits of 
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NO. 85. 

In February of the year 1881, a 
partial election took place in Ha- 
vana, and Ramón de Armas was 
re-elected ; he was the Cuban Con- 
servative who had accepted the 
under secretaryship of the minis- 
try of the Colonies. José Cortina 
was elected by the autonomists ; 
he was a distinguished Cuban 
whose untimely death occurred 
shortly thereafter. 

In the year 1884, in a partial election, there 
were chosen in Havana, Miguel Villanueva (Span- 
ish Conservative, re-elected), and Emilio Terry 
(Cuban Autonomist). In another election, Antonio 
Zambrana, Cuban Autonomist, and Pascual Goico- 
chea, Cuban Conservative, were 
chosen. In Matanzas Eliseo Gib- 
erga, Cuban Autonomist and 
Basilio Díaz del Villar, Spanish 
Conservative, were elected. 

Thus distorted, falsified and re- 
strained, political representation 
has been conceded to Cuba since 
the peace of Zanjón. But, if our 
representatives have been inferior 
in numbers they have not been so in capacity. 



86.— D. José Ramón 



NO. 87. 

The most eloquent proof that 
liberal sentiment and opinion 
predominates in the land — 
though stifled — is the oft-re- 
peated fact that institutions of 
culture like the University and 
the various Sociedades Económi- 
cas, in which the Spaniards fig- 
ure in a small minority, have 
invariably elected autonomist 
As to the political course of our deputies, suffice 
it to say that not one of them has ever solicited, 
obtained or accepted secretaryships, commissions, 
titles or honors in return for consenting to the impo- 
sition of a crushing tax on an impoverished country 
or to the suppression of its liber- 

Publicists and eminent states- 
men like Bernal, Saco and Jorrin 5 
distinguished writers and jurists 
like Betancourt, Guell and Car- 
bonell ; sincere and earnest patri- 
ots like Millet and Ortiz ; pre- 
eminent orators like Portuondo, 
Montoro, Figueroa, and Fernán- 
dez de Castro ; men of learning, experience and 
patriotism, under the indefatigable leader of 
the Antillan representatives, Labra, whose popu- 

No. 88. 
Miguel Figueroa. 




D. Alberto Ortiz. 

larity has been proved by twenty 
years of stainless services; these 
men, though opposed by thirty 
antagonistic and suspicious dep- 
uties, have at all times known 
how to maintain the standard of 
Autonomy with a firm and un- 
daunted spirit. Tempting offers 
of gifts and of power have never 
shaken them ; calumny has not 
deterred nor have bitter deceptions unnerved them ; 
they have not been swerved by the fatuousness of 
rulers who declared to the world that Cuban free- 
dom was incompatible with the na- 
tional idea, nor by the duplicity of 
those who, with artful promises 
have endeavored to prevent an ex- 
posure of the wrongs of an unfor- 
tunate people, 1 and I repeat, they 
have steadfastly held aloft the stand- 
ard of Autonomy as the symbol of the 
liberty and the constant hope of a 
colonial community which, of all 
those founded by Europeans on American soil, is 
the most unhappy and the most oppressed. 

NO. 90. 
D. Elíseo Giberga. 

1 On the 29th of March, 1887, the Cuban Deputy, Señor 
Portuondo, opened a debate on the economic condition of 


Cuba, which the Minister of State cut short pending the 
arrival of other Autonomist deputies from Havana. These 
arrived, but the postponement was continued. On May 9th 
the question was again taken up for discussion, but on the 
fallowing day the President of the Chamber interrupted Señor 
Portuondo with the statement that there had been too much 
talking, and requested him to conclude his discourse. The 
debate was again suspended until the 14th. Señor Perojo 
was also requested to conclude his speech on four successive 
occasions. Señor Portuondo had finally to give up speaking; 
on the other hand, the Conservative deputies, Señores Villa- 
nueva, Cal betón and Pando spoke at great length and with- 
out interruption. The debate was interrupted the third 
time; on the 17th Señor Portuondo asked to have it again 
taken up, but President Martos refused. 

The Cuban deputies, Señores. Figueroa, Terry and Fernan- 
dez de Castro, have with difficulty been able to explain 
some of their interpellations regarding administrative cor- 
ruption, questions of personal safety, and the administration 
of justice on this Island. 




Insecurity of Person and Property.— Prisoners Slaughtered 
Under Pretext of Preventing their Escape.— Costly and 
Inefficient Police Service. 

I am truly sorry that I 
know not your surname, 
friend Paco, were it only 
that I might vary the An- 
dalusian vocative which I 
am obliged to make use of. 
I presume you are a Pérez, 
or Méndez, or Lopez, or 
Azpeitegurrea ; but no mat- 
ter, the fact remains that 
after so many letters ad- 
dressed to you about our af- 
fairs, I find myself really growing fond of you, and 
am sometimes tempted and on the point of calling 
you " Pancho," which is a diminutive of our native 
origin, with which I am on more familiar terms. 

But let us get to our point, and quickly, for it is 
time to put an end to these pages, too numerous 
already, — and of which you have assuredly had a 

I acknowledge squarely, that the picture drawn 
by Moreno in his 15th " Conversation," concerning 

No. 92. College of Santo 



NO. 93. 
D. José Suárez García. 

personal security in our coun- 
try, is quite true to life. Really, 
and without undue exaggera- 
tion, we live miraculously. 

In the country we have 
armed assaults, kidnappings, 
abductions, fabulous ransoms, 
gangs of robbers led by wretches 
as cultured as Dumas' bandit- 
hero Luigi Vampa, or as philan- 
thropic as the Diego Corrientes 
of our own dramatic legend. 

In the cities we have the rapacious, land sharks, 
the pickpockets, the snatchers of watch chains, — 
the terrifying cry of " your money or your life," 
assailing the ear of the defenceless passer-by at 
every obscure corner ; the stabbings, the shootings, 
the cries, the incessant alarms, the rushings to and 
fro — everywhere a bloody picture of shameful and 
abominable barbarities. 

The anxious wife waits in suspense for the return 
of the absent husband. The mother watches her 
tender babe, fearful lest the precious one may, at any 
moment, be snatched from her bosom. But do not 
imagine that the Government fails to take all the 
steps necessary, or that it fails to receive from the 
country even more than is necessary to prevent such 
confusion and disturbances. 


In the first place it does not fail to afford the 
country the edifying example of the morality of its 
ministers, who don't defraud the treasury nor deceive 
the taxpayers, who do not falsify the public ac- 
counts, nor break into the official vaults and steal 
the Government revenue stamps, and who do not 
sell justice, and who in like manner endeavor to 
make those whom they govern follow in the path 
traced for them by their governors. 

In the second place, the government does not 
fail to suppress and do away with lawful proceed- 
ings and to sanction indiscriminate fusilades, such 
as are known as Amarillas ; frightful heca- 
tombs like that of Madruga, and such executions 
as that at. Las Puentes and Alquizar. Under pre- 
text of preventing attempted escapes, the minions 
"of the law have not failed to redden the roads, 
the streets, and the public places with the blood 
of untried prisoners. 

In the third place, the authorities have not in- 
deed invented, but only restored the inquisitorial 
proceeding known as the componte, the corporal 
punishment of those who, whether in the fields, 
in the barracks, in the villages, or in the towns, 
are arrested on suspicion. These proceedings do 
not fail to permit the wicked to remain at large 
and at their ease, in a land where the military 
— armed to the teeth — inspires a salutary terror in 


the hearts of the villagers, and which in its turn does 
not fail to lower their character by the mainten- 
ance of brute force. 1 

In the fourth place, the government does not fail 
to prevent and prohibit individual defence by keep- 
ing up a strict search for arms and imposing a 
heavy tax on the license to carry them. Our rulers 
are persuaded that a disarmed people can be 
more easily attended to by a strong and far seeing 
government. 2 

1 The Civil Government of Havana has just issued a circu-, 
lar which amply justifies what has been stated above. 
The reader will find it in the Appendix. All persons or 
residents through whose premises a bandit has passed are 
to be considered as accomplices of bandits, if they do not 
possess the necessary personal courage or public spirit to 
notify with electrical promptness the nearest police author- 

The defenceless peasants, in the face of the bandits who 
menace them with direful vengeance, — and persecuted by a 
government which considers their fears a crime — find no 
other escape from their tribulations than by emigration 
from a country where a Civil Governor arrogates to himself 
legislative functions, arbitrarily invents new crimes and dic- 
tates new processes of law for their punishment. 

2 In the Royal Decree of October 15th, 1886, it was ordered 
that no arms of any kind should be carried, even for the 
purposes of the chase or fishing, without a license from the 
proper authorities. Said license to be given by the Gov- 
ernor of the Province, not by the alcaldes, or mayors. The 
latter can only give permission to go fishing, always notify- 
ing the Governors. There are six kinds of licenses. 1st. 
For the use of all arms not prohibited, which costs $24 


And finally, to deliver us from the highwaymen 

who infest our roads, and the thieves who parade 

each year. 2nd. For the use of firearms for the defense 
of rural property, $1.50. 3d. Pocket firearms for personal 
defence in the outskirts of the towns, $6. 4th. Pocket firearms 
for the same defence in towns, $9. 5th. Arms for the chase, 
$6. 6th. Implements for fishing in rivers, pools and lakes, 
$1.50. Those of the first class are given only to Span- 
iards over 25 years of age, who pay direct tax. The 
second, third and fourth classes to persons over 20 
years of age. The license of the fifth class may be given 
to minors under 20 and over 15 years. In such cases guar- 
dians must send a written guarantee. Anyone may get a 
license to fish. There appears to be no danger of perturb- 
ing the public peace with hooks and harpoons; but still, if 
you want to go fishing, you must pay $1.50. These licenses 
are personal and not transferable, and must be applied 
for through the Courts on official stamped paper (cost- 
ing 37¿ cents), accompanied of course by the fee itself. 
The permit is recorded in the register, filed in the archives, 
and signed by the party interested; everything is foreseen 
— only the photograph is not provided for. Of course the 
Governors can dispense licenses gratis, on ordinary paper, 
to the employes of the civil administration, and to the po- 
lice when they desire it. On the other hand, in case of 
war or extraordinary contingencies, or when it is deemed 
convenient, they simply revoke the licenses that have been 
granted, without returning the money. The police of each 
locality keep a list of those who enjoy the concession. The 
infraction of this law is punishable with forfeiture, fine and 

This Decree does not concern the Spaniards, the great 
majority of whom belong to the Volunteer Corps, and are 
sufficiently armed without the necessity of paying for 


our streets, in order to guarantee the personal safety 
which we do not get, and which I, being a suspici- 
ous Autonomist, have grave doubts of our ever 
getting, the Government does not fail to impose 
the following budget of expenditure. 

Civil Guards (Police Service) 12,132,950 38 

Public Order 579,093 02 

" " Supplies 13,275 00 

Total $2,725,318 40 

And furthermore : 


Department of Havana $21,976 80 

House of Correction, Puerto Principe 1 . .... 2,77290 

Convict Station, Island of Pines 5,341 00 

Transportation and Charity 15,260 40 

Transportation of Criminals 2,000 00 

Total $47,351 10 

Add the costs of the administration of justice, 
badly organized and worse paid, $495,061.20 ; also 
the sums reserved for secret service in the Depart- 
ments of the Interior and of the Treasury, which 
amounts to the bagatelle of $25,000, but the ultimate 
disposition of which no one knows. 

And finally, if it please you, take into considera- 
tion the cost of the standing army. The mainten- 
ance of the troops alone, without counting the chief 
officials, commissioners, buildings, supplies, etc., 
amounts to $4,051,702.94, and this will doubtless 

Recently abandoned. 




afford you convincing proof that in Cuba the Gov- 
ernment does everything possible to insure the in- 
dividual safety, and that while we suffer enough 
and pay too much, there is some purpose in it. All 
this, which does not include the cost of local, muni- 
cipal and provincial police service, amounts to 

nothing less than $7,324,433.64. 

* * * * * * 

During the grievous administration of General 
Prendergast (in 1882) a form of legalized murder, of 
frightfully frequent occurrence, was instituted. 
Prisoners in transit are shot down under the pre- 
tense that they intended to escape. Scarcely a 
month passes when the Liberal press does not record 
some exhibition of barbarism in the shape of corpo- 
ral punishment — the so-called componte, which is, 
in the opinion of your friend Moreno, so harshly 
criticised by the Autonomists. These excesses were 
not checked even by the circular issued by the 
Chief of Police, Señor Denis, censuring and prohib- 
iting these scandalous outrages. That document 
was an official declaration, a partial confession, but 
not a corrective measure. 

El Triunfo, El País, El Diario de Matanzas, La 

Lucha, La Tarde, El Popular, La Protesta, El Radical, 

La República Ibérica, El Liberal de Colón, El Cubano,. 

all the periodicals which, in this unhappy land,, 



defend democratic principles as best they can, have 
cried out against these unheard of assaults on per- 
sonal liberty, which are a thousand times more 
alarming than the barbarous depredations of the 

But on the other hand, El Diario de la Marina 
and its congeners, especially La Voz de Cuba, have 
sanctioned and extenuated and frequently justified 
these proceedings. 

In May, 1882, La Voz de Cuba, in discussing the 
question and replying to the just censures of the 
more advanced press, endeavored to give the mat- 
ter a political coloring ; this paper even went to 
the extreme of endorsing the expressions, as blood- 
thirsty as they were extravagant, of a correspond- 
ent from Alquizar who (under the guise of a well- 
wisher of the peace) advocated that capital punish- 
ment be meted out for all crimes, not by the Courts 
of Justice but by the police ; whose wisdom, patriot- 
ism and disinterestedness appeared to the editor and 
correspondent alike as more efficient than the law. 

Do you understand, Paco ? Such precepts and 
examples, such preposterous doctrines give sanction 
to perverted moral sentiment as the only law of 
Government. It is a proposition to do away with 
the Criminal Code and to abolish all responsible 
government. One periodical, La Union de Güines, I 
quote with pleasure, both because I myself edited it 


during six years, and because of the two men who are 
still fully identified with its noble work. I refer to 
Leopoldo Cancio, a distinguished Cuban, and José 
Suarez Garcia, a talented and generous Spaniard, 
who devoted the work of his facile pen to the de- 
fense of our rights and of Cuban Autonomy. This 
paper treated the subject in the following article 
which I reproduce as a close to the present chapter. 
You will observe how different are the views which 
we Autonomists hold from the Conservatives, in 
regard to the manner in which Cuba is to obtain 
the boon of safety for the individual. 

" The Slaughter Continues. 

"Our editorial of last Sunday had not yet seen the light 
when we read in the columns of El Triunfo the death of 
another person — victim of the police — in no less public a 
place than the Campo de Marte, in the centre of Havana. 
We have also heard, and have reason to credit the news, 
that at Alquizar, in the Province of San Antonio de los 
Baños, three prisoners have been killed by their escort. 

' ' Were we to examine these actions by the light of con- 
stitutional principles and of penal law, it would be easy to 
prove that the worst delinquents have not been the victims, 
but their slayers; but that would be a waste of effort. 
There is no man of sense who does not fully understand it. 

" In the meantime our jails and prisons — entirely 
dependent on the Government — are sinks of corruption 
where, in a Babel of confusion, men and women of all ages, 


prisoners awaiting trial, and convicts, clamor for redress. 
The desire to do what is right, a sense of justice and of 
morality, would find there a vast unexplored field for action. 
This work would be truly worthy of noble hearts capable 
of self-abnegation and self- discipline. Just men would 
applaud, and sentimentalism would not dare to oppose them. 
But what do the lovers of justice do when they palliate the 
shooting of prisoners under the pretense of intended flight? 

" They are probably the most active in agitating general 
or partial amnesties or commutations of sentence, full of 
compassion for the delinquents who pass their time of 
sentence in the brothels which are called penal establish- 
ments, but their sense of justice does not prevent them from 
applauding the death of the criminal. 

" It also rests with the State to increase the number of 
judges, so as to diminish the number of unpunished crimes. 
There are scarcely forty judges in Cuba, who must perforce 
exercise their jurisdiction over large districts. How is it 
possible for the trial of criminal cases not to suffer from the 
lack of good judges ? Generally the initial proceedings are 
effected by utterly ignorant persons who, because they can 
read the laws, consider themselves capable of understanding 
and applying them. Either increase the number of judges 
or establish a system of district attorneys. Then we will 
surely have less frequent occasion to look with indifference 
on the slaughter of prisoners who attempted to escape. 
Since so many millions are spent here annually they might 
well employ a modest sum for reform in such a noble 

"The defects of our laws of criminal procedure are 


much commented upon. In truth these deficiencies are 
considerable, but they do not justify all that is said against 
them. The chief defect being the insufficient protection of 
the culprit, the reform of the laws would consequently not 
bring about the result hoped for. 

"In short, it must be confessed that the wisdom of civilized 
nations is right. Laws tending to produce the common 
good, and their honest enforcement should be the aim of all 
cultured people. In criminal cases then, we must keep to 
the code, even if its procedure ruffles the temper of the 
police officers; and when capital punishment must be 
inflicted the hangman alone should perform the office. 

"We conclude by begging those in authority not to 
shield the negligence of the police, and to insist upon 
greater zeal in the performance of their functions as 
custodians of prisoners. 




Industrial and Economic Data.— The Resources of the 
Country Drained by Extortionate Taxation. 

Is there anything marvellous in the spectacle of 
misery which Cuban society presents? Have we to 
agree with your correspondent, Moreno, that the 

causes of this state 
of things are not that 
God permits and our 
rulers do not prevent 
them, but that they 
are to be found "in 
the blunders of the 
people, the hatred by 
the Cubans of all that is Spanish, the cost of the 
civil war, and vice, whether manifested as voluptu- 
ousness or as a concomitant of luxury; the failure 
to replace slave labor by mechanical appliances, 
and the indolence and apathy of the natives, who 
want yet more leisure for the purpose of electing 
Montoro and crying for Autonomy ?" 

You deceive yourself; poverty does not exist here ; 
at least it is not apparent. We are swimming in 
plenty. We have been, and still are, immensely 



Notwithstanding the abolition of slavery, which 
cost the Cubans a hard struggle to wrench from the 
Conservatives and the Home Government — the 
harvests of 1885-1886 have been larger than any 
recorded in the annals of our sugar production. 

At this very moment 1 have at hand a paper 
which states that the Province of Güines is supply- 
ing the markets of the United States with excellent 
potatoes. It is not crops that we stand in need of. 
The best tobacco yet smoked in Germany and Lon- 
don, is from the Vuelta Abajo. 

So then, this country works and produces; — can 
it be poor? .... 

The war? .... the theatre of hostilities 
was limited to much less than two-thirds of the 

Havana and Pinar del Rio did not feel its ravages, 
and Matanzas but very little. The torch did not 
devastate the rich and fruitful plains of these ex- 
tensive provinces — the richest and most thickly 
populated of the island. Their sugar and coffee 
plantations, orchards and farms were not destroyed. 

Country and city property has now less than half 
of its former value .... but it has not alto- 
gether disappeared ! 

Oh, we are truly rich ! 

From 1821 to 1826 Cuba, with her own resources, 
covered the expenditures of the Treasury. Our 


opulence dates from that period. We had already 
sufficient negro slaves to cut down our virgin forests, 
and ample authority to force them to work. . . . 

By means of our vices and our luxury, and in 
spite of the hatred of everything Spanish which 
Moreno attributes to us, we sent, in 1827, the first 
little million of hard cash to the treasury of the 
nation. From that time until 1864, we continued 
to send yearly to the mother country, two millions 
and a half of the same stuff. 

According to several Spanish statisticians these 
sums amounted in 1864 to $89,107,287. 

We were very rich, don't you see? tremendously 
rich. We contributed more than five million dollars 
towards the requirements of the Peninsula ($5,372,- 

We paid, in great part, the cost of the war in 
Africa. The individual donations alone amounted 
to fabulous sums. But, of course, we have never 
voted for our own imposts; — they have been forced 
upon us because we are so rich. 

In 1862 we had in a state of production the fol- 
lowing estates : 

2,712 stock farms. 
1,521 sugar plantations. 

782 coffee 
6,175 cattle ranches. 


18 cocoa plantations. 
35 cotton " 

22,748 produce farms. 
11,738 truck farms. 
11,541 tobacco plantations. 
1,731 apiaries. 
153 country resorts. 
243 distilleries. 
468 tile-works. 
504 lime-kilns. 
63 charcoal furnaces. 
54 casava-bread factories. 
61 tanneries. 

The valve of this property, together with its ap- 
purtenances, was estimated at $380,554,527, with a 
net income of $38,055,452.70. 

To-day I do not know what we possess, because 
there are no statistics and because the recently or- 
ganized assessment is a hodge-podge and a new 
burden; but we have more than at that time; surely, 
we must have a great deal more. 

According to a statement made in the Cortes by a 
learned Deputy, Don José del Perojo (who by the 
way is not an Autonomist), Cuba has given to the 
Spanish Treasury 137 millions of dollars. And 
does any one dare to speak of our poverty ? 


For a very long time we have borne the expenses 
of the convict settlement of Fernando Po. 

We paid for the ill-starred Mexican expedition, 
the costs of the war in San Domingo, and with the 
republics of the Pacific ; how can we possibly be 
poor ? 

While England, France and Holland appropriate 
large sums for the requirements of their Colonies? 
Spain does not contribute a single cent for hers. 

We do not need it, we are wading deep in rivers 
of gold. 

If the fertility of our soil did not come to our 
rescue, we must perforce have become enriched by 
the system of protection to the commerce of the 
Mother Country. . . . The four columns of the 
Tariff are indeed a sublime invention. 

Our agricultural industries require foreign ma- 
chinery, tools, and utensils, which Spain does not 
supply, but as she knows that we have gold to spare 
she may make us pay for them very high. And 
since our sugar is to be sold to the United States 
. . . never mind what they cost. 

When there are earthquakes in Andalusia and 
inundations in Murcia, hatred does not prevent us 
from sending to our afflicted brethren large sums 
. . . (which sometimes fail to reach their destina- 

We are opulent ? Let us see if we are. 


From the earliest times down to the present the 
officials who come to Cuba amass in the briefest 
space of time fortunes to be dissipated in Madrid, 
and which appear never to disturb their consciences. 

This country is very rich, incalculably rich. 

In 1830 we contributed 6,120,934 dollars; in 
1840,$9,605,877; in 1850, $10,074,677; in 1860, 
$29,610,779. During the war we did not merely 
contribute, we bled. We had to carry a budget of 
82 millions. 

Poor indeed ! In 1880 we paid 40 millions. In 
1882, $35,860,246.77. Just now we are rendered 
happy by having the total expenditure of the State 
fixed at the paltry sum of $25,959,734.79; this is 
without counting the municipal taxes. 

We count 1,500,000 inhabitants; that is to say, 
one million and a half of vicious, voluptuous, pomp- 
ous spendthrifts, full of hatred and low passions, 
who contribute to the public charges and never re- 
ceive a cent in exchange ; who have given as much 
as $92 per capita, and who at the present moment 
pay to the State what no other taxpayers the world 
over have ever contributed. 

Does any one say that we are not prodigiously, 
enviably rich? Only a fool would believe. that we 
are starving to death. 




Resume.— The Yearning for Freedom.— The Leaders of the 
Autonomist Movement. — The Religious Sentiment of the 
People. — Mercenary Spirit of the Clergy.— Social Condi- 
tions Reviewed— The Women of Cuba. 

We have come to Señor Moreno's chapter of re- 
sumes, and although I have followed step by 
step the plan of his work, I shall not take up 

again the hopeless sub- 
ject of administrative 
corruption, in connec- 
tion with the recent 
scandalous embezzle- 
ments in the Depart- 
of Public Works. 

My opinion, the pub- 
lic opinion, in regard 
to these matters, has already been stated. The 
responsibility for them falls upon the nation which 
has founded, maintained and still upholds a fright- 
ful system of spoliation, resulting in the consump- 
tion of the vital tissues of the social body; a system 
which has brought us to the state of prostration in 
which we find ourselves and which is dragging us 
down an inclined plane to perdition and ruin. 

No 97.— Teatro Terry, Cienfuegos. 



NO. 98. 
D. José Makía Zayas. 

Neither shall I refer to his diatribes regarding our 
political demoralization. If you have read my pre- 
ceding letters attentively, you 
must be persuaded, or rather con- 
vinced, that the Cubans present 
the highest example of disinter- 
estedness, virility, abnegation and 
patriotism ever offered in the his- 
tory of a people educated for and 
subjected to servitude. They have 
never remained passive under the 
misfortunes of their country; 
never given themselves up to in- 
difference or despair. Always 
ready for sacrifice, indomitable and strong in the face 
of all afflictions, they have battled in the cause of re- 
generation and progress, and they still battle without 
an hour of repose, and without hope of recompense. 
The political struggle in Cuba has not been a busi- 
ness enterprise in quest of the spoils of office or the 
plunder of the tax-payers, or of other and name- 
less mercenary schemes. 

Our country counts for something in the North 
American hemisphere. We Cubans love the liberty 
which we have never known, and strive for it be- 
cause of our sincere longing for freedom. Yesterday 
the Vardas, Sacos, Pozos Dulces, Azcárates, Morales 
Lemus, Aguileras, Céspedes, Agramontes, Aldamas, 


Cisneros, and so many others, gave the example of 
endless labor and sacrifice, without other ambition 
than the good of their country- 
And to-day, Gálvez, Govín, Sala- 
drigas, Montoro, 1 Cancio, Hernan- 
dez Abreu, Bruzón, Millet, Labra, 
Fernández de Castro, Figueroa, 
Ortiz, Bernal,Ocejo, Marcos Garcia 
Spoturno, Santa Lucia, Portuondo, 
and others ; all those who, with 
zeal, patriotism and intelligence, 
excluded from all participation in 
public matters, direct the liberal 
autonomist movement. Not one of them dreams 
when giving his best days to the defense of his 
cherished ideals, of reaping any personal benefit 
in the way of exalted position, the incumbency of 
office, or the obtainment of ostentatious honors. 
Rather do they discern in the bitterness of deception 
and in moments of infinite sadness their dreams of 
a brighter future swallowed in an ocean of disap- 
pointment and borne down into an eternity of hope- 

NO. 99. 
D. Ramón Zambrana. 

But let us now treat of the religious condition of 
the Cubans. Moreno has given you to understand 

1 Montoro was the founder of the Autonomist Party and 
has never acted with the Conservatives as Moreno supposes. 



NO. 100. 
D. Tristan Medina. 

that our people are accustomed from early youth to 
meddle in politics, but that they are insensible to 
the importance of religion. He 
finds occasion even to quote Vol- 
taire concerning the necessity of a 
religious life. I have something 
to say myself regarding our clergy ; 
of the example it gives the Catho- 
lic community, and the way in 
which those of our countrymen, 
who are ordained for the pulpit, are 
excluded from ecclesiastical offices. 
I will not say that the people are unbelieving, 
but they are certainly not fanatical. Here, where 
until recent years (1871) none but the Roman 
Catholic religion was tolerated ; where the clergy 
was, and is still to a great extent, a power which 
vies with the military authorities in the exercise of 
tyranny, it is not strange that indifference predomi- 
nates. God's ministers are so repellant here that 
they alienate the devotion of the faithful. It has 
not been found possible in a land where gold has been 
amassed with the blood of slaves, to erect those 
sumptuous cathedrals which, in the home country 
and in Mexico, are still the admiration of architects 
— though perhaps from another aspect they do not 
merit so much esteem. Our churches give but a 
poor idea of the cult, particularly if their shabby 

Avenue of Palms, Matanzas. 





construction be compared to their fabulous incomes. 
It is not an easy matter to build even a poor hermit- 
age, although the first step taken in projecting the 
construction is to authorize the popular fetes, (mis- 
named fairs) at which illicit games of hazard— 
monte, roulette, etc., are permitted. It is possible 
that the church undertakes to cleanse the consciences 
stained in adding to its prestige. The end is but 
too frequently made to justify the means, and to an 
extreme degree. 

Our clergy does not trouble itself with dogma nor 
propaganda. It is a question of lucre — of adminis- 
tering the sacraments, and of 
collecting the fees thereon, and 
more than the fees. There is 
not one parish which supports 
a free or endowed school. 

Just now there is an active 
crusade against the civil mar- 
riage ceremony, recently insti- 
tuted. The pulpit launches 
against it the thunderbolts of 
its .wrath. The newspapers 

give daily instances of this crusade against a legiti- 
mate institution. 

The division of the dioceses into parishes accord 
rather with financial exigencies than with spiritual! 

NO. 101. 
Pbro. Miguel D. Santos- 



necessities There are rectorships which embrace 
extensive and thickly populated districts where the 
parishioners are neglected, 
but which are known as of 
the 1st class on account of 
their profits. They are sought 
and given in this sense as 
signal favors to such as have 
sufficient influence. There 
have been a few chosen ones 
who have reaped a harvest 
from three or four of these 
snug berths. 

According to the canon 
law the parochial livings 
should be held in the sense of proprietary holdings. 
In Cuba there are scarcely any proprietary clergy, 
and the canonical provisions have become a dead 
letter. The bishops reserve the right to make 
appointments, and since 1864 there is no pretence 
of complying with the law. The arbitrary dispen- 
sation of favors and benefits is thus greatly facili- 

The local newspapers ha V o ^uwisiieu much in 
reference to these appointments. What I know as 
an absolute fact, Paco, is that the natives of the 
country who have chosen the priesthood as a voca- 
tion have never had any share in them. They have 

NO. 102.— D. JüAN VILARÓ. 


always been excluded from all places of importance; 
these are reserved for the Spaniards. On some 
occasions they have even been denied the right to 
preach. I can prove it. The Bishopric of Havana 
comprises 144 parishes ; only twenty-two of these 
are attended by Cuban priests. Though many 
positions are vacant, we find only two Cuban 
rectors, three chaplains of institutions, and one 
assistant. In the cathedral chapter there is but one 
Cuban, and only two natives of the country have 
ever obtained canonships .... the mitre 
never ! . 

Many proofs might be given of the general 
ignorance of the clergy, while at the same time, 
priests of acknowledged worth and learning, famous 
pulpit orators, are shut off in obscure villages 
because they are Cubans. 

But this is nothing ; at other periods they were 
unmercifully persecuted and exiled from the 
country. The Spanish clergy take active part in 
the politico-social battles, and offer lamentable 
examples of forge tfulness of their high calling. 

The chaplaincies are considered dainty morsels. 
The Collector appointed by the Bishop receives ten 
per cent. The appointments constitute another 
privilege which the favored ones enjoy. In regard 
to this, only one fact needs to be commented upon — 
the faithful, in their wills no longer request Chap- 


laincies to be founded. The institution has fallen 
into disrepute ... or the faith of the faithful 
has diminished. 

During the rule of Señor Pardo, Vicar General, 
the See being vacant, the Cemetery Fund, which 
had been accumulating in the Bishopric for years, 
suddenly disappeared ... It was a matter of 
a fabulous sum. 

Do you want more information, Paco ? . . . Oh 
no ; it is enough for you to be able to refute the 
assertions of Moreno regarding the religious cultus 
in Cuba. But in conclusion, and in order that you 
may be convinced that this people, even if unbeliev- 
ing, knows and feels that religion is necessary, — 
just see what part the cultus plays according to 
general estimate of its current cost. 

Fixed charges : 

Diocese of Havana $ 5,481 

" Cuba 17,138 

Pensions 1,200 

Ecclesiastical Tribunals 20,480 

Supplies for same 400 

Cathedral clergy 121,492 

Supplies for same 11,000 

Parochial clergy 144,632-62 

Supplies for same 72,376 

General expenses : 

Rent of buildings $ 15,832 

Repairs and construction 15,666 


Sundry expenses : 

Ecclesiastical trips. .... $8,000 

Assistance to clergy who immigrate from other 

parts of America 2,000 

Seminarians 5,196-40 

Expenses incident to religious orders : 

Personal $64,532 

Supplies 30,039 

War Department, Military Clergy: 

Personal $4,200 

Material 300 

Military Hospitals: Personnel 

Of the Clergy and Sisters of Charity $14,488 

Chaplain 296 

The purification of our consciences costs us a total 
of $548,694,2. 

Little less than what is spent in public improve- 

Let him who accuses us of religious demoraliza- 
tion take heed ! 

Social Demoralization,. 
The Cuban woman and family have drawn from 
Moreno the most bitter taunts and insulting criti- 
cism. Each time he has had occasion to deal with 
the cherished sentiments of this community he has 
soiled the paper with disgusting calumnies giving 
vent to his unjustifiable hatred. 



" Together with the home of the family, the temple, 
of pleasure ; in front of the house of God, that of vice . . . 
(See page 12) .... the girl 
or hoy before reaching the age 
of reason has very little to learn 
in the way of wickedness .... 
The peculiar dances of Cuba 
are another strong incentive to 
corruption . ... in public as 
well as in private balls, the 
mode of dancing is indecor- 
ous." (Pages 142 and 143) 

" Woman if not a slave on 
that Island is an object of lux- 

, "She is not possessed of an idea ; she has not a heart 
to feel, nor a soul that inspires .... Everywhere im- 
morality and scandal." (Page 195) 

The hand which traced those lines never touched 
the hand of an honest woman ; never breathed the 
atmosphere of virtue and simplicity which pervades 
the modest hearth of the Cuban family. 

It is not I, who, inspired by patriotism and the 
natural enthusiasm of one who has professed as a 
supreme cult, love and respect for woman, and 
especially the Cuban woman, that model of austere 
virtue, of tender sentiments and of generous im- 
pulses, it is not I alone who shall defend her here. 

No. 108.— Da Luisa Pekez de 



A learned soldier who has aged on the fields of 
battle defending the national flag, who fought ten 

years against the Cuban 
troops, but who, in a spirit 
of justice, has . advocated 
the liberty of this land — 
Colonel Francisco Camps 
y Feliú — in his most inter- 
esting historical memoirs 
on the events of the Cuban 
Revolution, has made the 
defense of the Cuban woman 
in a concise, positive man- 
ner in the following para- 
graphs with which I am enabled to brighten this pub- 
lication ; these expressions have the double merit of 
having been written by a sincere and dispassionate 
eye-witness, without pretense to niceties of language 
or display of rhetoric : 

No. 104.— Da. aubelia Castillo 
de González. 

" Before concluding this chapter, we desire to say some- 
thing of what is, morally and physically, considered most 
interesting in the Island of Cuba — woman ! ' Las donas,' 
says the celebrated Catalonian writer, Valentin Almirall, 
' by the beauty of their complexions, the regularity of their 
features, and their luxuriant hair, form one of the most 
perfect types of the Caucasian race.' 

" This description by the distinguished Catalonian has 


reference to the impression which the Castilian populace 
produced in him, and with a few variations due to the 
ardent sun of the tropics, it answers faithfully the descrip- 
tion of the Cuban woman, who is just as beautiful and just 
as Castilian as her European sisters. She is also intelligent, 
impressionable, sympathetic, and above all she idolizes her 

' ' Whether living in the greatest opulence, in moderate 
circumstances, or in humble poverty, she is always dignified 
and sweet in her behavior and charitable to the poor. She 
is the ideal wife, of whom history has given us some perfect 
examples. They are naturally home- bodies, but while, when 
on pleasure bent, she shows her many charms to advantage 
and attracts attention by the grace and beauty of her 
person, she can also attend to her household duties and ply 
the needle like a finished seamstress. 

" The woman who lives in the country and who is called 
' guajira,' or ' guajirita ' if she is young, has no reason to 
envy her city sisters. On Sunday, when she lays aside her 
domestic work and makes her toilet to sit at the cottage 
door or go to the dance, she does not look like a peasant girl! 
her rich hair arranged in the latest style, adorned with a rose 
or some other natural flower, a well-fitting muslin gown and 
neat slippers — the guajirita might well sit in a box at the 
Tacon theatre ; she would soon lose a certain timidity of 
expression and shyness of manner caused by a lack of ease 
in refined society. For the rest, our guajira is superior in 
culture to the peasants of other nations. The delicious 
freshness of some of them make one think of rosebuds, and 
if you add to these charms of person the honest coquetry 


natural to all women, and her many virtues, it is not sur- 
prising that many of them have married distinguished 
Cubans, and officers of our army. 

" The Cuban woman, whether she hail from city or country, 
is good, intelligent and industrious; those who scoffingly 
say that she neglects domestic work and is only fit to lie in 
a hammock and fan herself, do not know the Cuban woman. 
This warm-hearted woman is a chaste spouse and a slave to 
duty even under the most adverse circumstances; on the 
battlefields she fulfilled her sad mission, courageously fol- 
lowing her father or husband. The noble Cuban girl, in 
the midst of all dangers, remained as pure and unsullied as 
the painted Virgin immortalized by Murillo. This just 
tribute to. the ever honorable daughters of Cuba is right- 
fully due, inasmuch as the falsehoods and calumnies of igno- 
ble writers have confounded the frailty of some unfortunates 
(who have companions in all lands) with the high morality 
and purity of the stainless majority. We make these asser- 
tions with a thorough knowledge derived from what we have 
witnessed in Camagiiey, in Santiago, and in Las Villas. Our 
companions in arms who have united in holy wedlock with 
Cuban ladies, can vouch for the truth of our assertions. 

"The virtuous Cuban woman is worthy of love and 
respect, whether her lot has been cast in splendor, in 
poverty, in the cities and towns, or lonely and afar in the 
dangerous battlefields. In thus expressing our admiration 
for them, we but acquit ourselves of a duty as honorable 
men." 1 

1 Don Francisco Camps y Feliú was born in Gerona on 
August 21st, 1825. He came to Cuba for the first time in 



NO. 105. 

1851 with the rank of captain, and remained until 1862. 
Returned a second time in 1866. His record is here con- 
densed as follows: Knight, with cross aud star, of the order 
of San Hermenegildo, twice decorated with the red cross of 
the second class of-M. M. and with tbe third of the same 
order; received the medal of the Cuban 
war with ten pendants, representing as 
many years of campaign; three times de- 
clared Benefactor of his Country; Lieu- 
tenant Governor aud defender of Holguin 
in 1868; first Chief Commander of the 
Volunteers of Cadiz and Barcelona, also 
of the " El Rayo" lancers; chief of half 
brigade with the Spanish battalion of 
the Lancers of Vergara; Chief of Line in 
San Miguel of Nuevitas; Commander 
of the districts of Camarones, Arroyo 
Blanco, Banas, Santa Gertrudis, Copey, 
Santa Cruz, Jobabo, Fray Benito, Puerto del Padre; Colonel 
of the Infantry Regiment of Havana; ex-General Command- 
ant of Holguin and of Victoria de las Tunas, and retired 
Colonel of Infantry. 

Señor Camps, during the last war in Cuba, distinguished 
himself for his valor aud his humane conduct towards the 
vanquished; although not affiliated with any party, he has 
disinterestedly taken up the defense of Cuban liberty in 
many articles signed under the pseudonym of " Un guajira 
practico " (A practical peasant). Among his magnanimous 
actions, is quoted that of having offered to accompany 
General Dulce to the Cabana fortress when the latter, 
angered at the insubordination of the volunteers, went alone 
to free the political prisoner Belisario Alvarez. 

He has recently published in a volume of 400 octavo pages 
his memoirs entitled "Españoles é Insurrectos," (Spaniards 
and Insurgents). 



NO. 106. 
Da. Susana benítez 

If you have honest judgment, Paco, and know 
how to draw logical conclusions, then consider the 
dispassionate opinions of the vete- 
ran Spaniard, whose veracity is 
backed by thirty years of faithful 
service in Cuba in his country's 
cause, whose accurate criticisms 
betoken a prolonged and familiar 
contact with Cuban society, — 
choose between his testimony and 
the stupid diatribes of the author 
of " Cuba y su Gente," who, judg- 
ing from what he has written, has 
confined his investigations in the country to the 
lobbies where the bureaucrats reign supreme, and 
to the dens of vice where they seek amusement. 

And if you desire further information, let me tell 
you that in 1826 the celebrated German traveler 
and philosopher Alexander von Humboldt, in 
treating on the Island of Cuba in his " Political 
Essays," contributes the following testimonial to the 
Cuban woman : " Our attention was once more at- 
tracted to the vivacity and cheerfulness of mind 
which characterize the women of Cuba, both in the 
city and country ; wondrous gifts of nature to which 
the culture of European civilization adds a higher 
(¿harm ; they are also pleasing in their primitive 


This enchanting child of the tropics has the supple 
figure, sweet voice, bright expression and ardent 
glance which betoken an intelligent mind and sen- 
sitive temperament, and which reveal a natural 
habitude of purest virtue ; she is queen of home by 
right of her physical charms and the immaculate 
purity of her soul. 

In the humble cottage of the laborer she shares 
with him the rude tasks of the day, and encourages 
him with the example of her industry and humility. 
In the city the working class is employed in trades 
proper to their sex, and does not throw away their 
meagre earnings in feasting and dissipation. In 
towns like Bejucal and Santiago she works in the 
cigarette factories, — but always and everywhere, 
be it in the lowly or the affluent home, as mother, 
wife, or daughter, she mitigates with her many 
charms, her sweetness, and tender affection, the 
burden which weighs so heavily on the heart of the 
Cuban — his eternal proscription in his own country. 

At the hour of supreme danger, when the voice 
of duty and the demands of patriotism called upon 
her, — her generous spirit kindled with heroic inspi- 
ration, and her enthusiasm was communicated to the 
husband, the lover, and the son ; she rushed with 
him to the battle-field to urge him in the fight, and 
either followed him in his bitter lot or shared hi^ 
triumphs. And she has followed him — valiant in 


adversity, and serene throughout martyrdom, — in 
the sad and thorny paths of exile and of persecution. 
Woman of Cuba ! Seal the infamous lips of him 
who has insulted you, for in you the sweetest and 
noblest virtues are conbined with the heroic courage 
of the Spartan ! 




A book has been answered by another book, 
because it was necessary to refute with convincing 
reasons and unquestionable proofs, the iniquitous 
charges made against a 
people irresponsible for their 
many misfortunes ; because 
it was fitting to show in a 
brief sketch the efforts which 
this country has made for 
progress and regeneration ; 
because, in a word, it should 
be cried from the housetops 
with all possible strength 
that the rabid slanderers of 
Cuba and her people are the 
very ones who exploit and 

oppress her ; that is why this collection of letters 
sees the light. They were written for the purpose 
of publication in a newspaper. 

Some are of opinion that an insult launched in 
the world of letters by an unknown author — with- 
out reputation or political importance — should be 
ignored ; the malignity of the work, they maintain, 
refutes itself. 

No. 107— Grupo de Palmas. 


By so doing, however, we would allow the accusa- 
tion to stand, to be circulated in libraries and homes ; 
to be read and even consulted as a volume which 
pretends to describe the moral and social state of a 
country. It would be to forget that Señor Moreno — 
obscure and what you will — is but another example 
of a class of writers who in Spain pride themselves 
on describing Cuba and the people by stigmatizing 

May these letters, written without anger or preju- 
dice, serve to silence his calumnies. " Cuba y sus 
Jueces " is a refutation of " Cuba y su Gente." 

Those who have been amused or led astray in 
reading the lucubrations of Señor Moreno, must not 
lose sight of the fact that the Cubans are legitimate 
children of their progenitors, whose vices and 
virtues they reflect, with all the littleness of the 
former and all the greatness of the latter. 

But, after reading these pages, which describe in 
broad outline the innumerable trials of a part of the 
Spanish commonalty — worthy but disinherited — 
you will observe that among all the virtues which 
adorn the Cuban is one of unusual brightness : the 
loyalty and perseverance with which, under diverse 
forms and at different epochs of history, he has sus- 
tained his noble purpose of social and political 

When the hour of catastrophe approaches; in the 


face of a frightful political crisis ; threatened with 
ruin, bankruptcy and misery, without hope of ob- 
taining from the Home Country the needed remedy 
for all these calamities and misfortunes; the Cuban, 
full of faith by virtue of his principles, has not even 
surreptitiously raised another flag nor sought salva- 
tion under the protection of foreign influences. 

Steadfast in his convictions, with eyes fixed on 
the mother land which refuses to listen to his clam- 
ors, he stands on the brink of the chasm into which 
traditions, country, hopes of glory and of progress 
seem to vanish ; embracing the flag, he begs for 
Autonomy as the saving anchor for the Colony and 
for the Nation. 

Let Spain not forget, after the sad experiences 
and lessons of its history that, as has been pointed 
out by Leroy Beaulieu, "the formation of Society 
should not be abandoned to chance. It is due to a 
colonial people that the new social organism which 
they create shall be established under new condi- 
tions, such as are most appropriate for the evolu- 
tion of their natural powers ; that their way be 
paved and they be afforded all necessary facilities 
for development without ever restricting their enter- 
prise. Colonization is an art learned in the school 
of experience, and perfected through the discarding 
of methods whose failure has been demonstrated, 
and by the adoption of such measures as observa- 
tion and study may suggest." . 





to be used in unusual emergencies and in cases 
which do not admit of deeay for consultation, 
conceded to the captain general of havana, 
May 28th, 1825, and again promulgated in the 
Royal Decrees of March 21st and 26th, 1834. 

His Majesty being firmly persuaded that at no time 
and under no circumstances will the principles of recti- 
tude and love to his royal person which characterize Your 
Excellency ever be weakened ; and H. M. desiring to 
obviate any difficulties which might arise in extraordinary 
cases from a division of authority and the complication of 
command and control by the respective officers, and to the 
important end of preserving in that precious Island his 
legitimate sovereign rule and the public peace, has been 
pleased, in accordance with the judgment of his council of 
ministers, to invest Y. Ex. with full authority, conferring 
all the powers which by royal decree are conceded to the 
governors of cities in a state of siege. H. M. consequently 
invests Y. Ex. with full and unlimited authority to detach 
from that Island and to send to this Peninsula all officials and 
persons employed in whatsoever capacity and of whatsoever 
rank, class, or condition, whose presence may appear preju- 


dicial, or whose public or private conduct may inspire you 
with suspicion, replacing them in the interim with faithful 
servants of H. M. who are deserving of the confidence of 
Y. Ex., and furthermore to suspend the execution of any 
orders or general regulations issued in whatever branch of 
the administration to whatever extent Y. Ex. may consider 
convenient to the royal service; such measures to be always 
provisional and a report thereof to be sent by Y. Ex. for the 
sovereign approval of H. M. In dispensing to Y. Ex. this 
signal proof of his royal favor and of the high confidence which 
H.M. places in your perfect loyalt}^, he hopes that, worthily 
co-operating, you will use the greatest prudence and circum- 
spection, together with indefatigable activity, and trusts that 
Y. Ex. will, being endowed through this same favor of his 
royal goodness with a greater responsibility, redouble your 
vigilance in seeing that the laws are observed, that justice 
is administered, and that the faithful subjects of H. M. be 
rewarded ; at the same time punishing without delay or 
hesitation the misdeeds of those who, forgetting their obliga- 
tions and what they owe to the best and most beneficent of 
sovereigns, violate the law r s and give full vent to sinister 
machinations by the infraction of the said laws and of the 
administrative ordinances relating thereto. The which, by 
Royal Order, I communicate to Y. Ex. for your instruction. 
God keep you, etc. — Madrid, etc. — To Señor, the Captain 
General of the Island of Cuba. 



Of the Departments of Public Works, Sanitation, 
Chartty, Public Instruction and Justice. 

185£, August 17th. — Royal Decree investing the Governor 
Captain General with the executive administration, of the 
Boards of Public Works, Health,, Charity and Public 
Instruction, said Boards maintaining the character of con- 
sultative agencies for the former. 

Most Excellent Sir: H. M. the Queen has deigned to 
issue the following Royal Decree : 

In consideration of the reasons laid before me by the 
Minister of State, and in compliance with the advice of my 
Council of Ministers, I decree the following : 

Article 1st. The Boards and other special corporations 
which form part of the public administration of the Island 
of Cuba will in future be Consultative Councils of the Gov- 
ernor Captain General in the matters concerning their re- 
spective institutions and authority. 

Article 2d. The Governor Captain General will assume 
the active functions of administration now relating to the 
Boards of Public Works, Health, Charity and Education. 

Done in the Palace, on the 17th of August, 1854. 
Signed by the Royal hand. Minister of State Joaquin 
Francisco Pacheco. 

By Royal Order communicated to Y. E., etc., Madrid 
17th of August, 1854. — To Señor, the Governor Captain 
General of the Island of Cuba. 


Issued by Brigadier-General Denis, Chief of Police. 

It having been brought to my notice that certain indi- 
vidual members of this body not only make use of rude ex- 
pressions and gestures, but that under pretext of obtaining 
intelligence of secrets they have recourse to violent measures 
against peaceful and honest citizens ; it having transpired 
that some of the latter, through fear on the approach of the 
officers, have abandoned their homes; and such being contrary 
to the letter and spirit of the law, I have accordingly to state 
to you that the captains of the Command in your charge shall 
be directed at once to promulgate all the ordinances pertain- 
ing to this subject, and require their exact fulfillment. By 
proceeding in the manner therein provided, in accordance 
with the provisions of Article 8, Chapter 1 of the law, the 
presence of the police will everywhere inspire confidence; 
on this basis the force of the organization should always rest, 
in order to protect the lives and property of honest persons, 
as well as to pursue relentlessly all those who for various 
crimes are put under the ban of justice. 

The escorting of prisoners being one of the most impor- 
tant and responsible functions which devolve upon the 
members of the Corps, that service should be rendered 
with the greatest exactitude. The prisoners should, while 
under escort, be securely bound, and vigilance redoubled 
when the surrounding circumstances so require, not only so 


as to fulfill the requirement that they be conducted without 
delay to the place prescribed by law, but also to preclude 
escapes, which would entail a great responsibility upon the 

I have observed with displeasure that in spite of the defi- 
nite terms of the law, it very frequently happens that persons 
who are being conducted by the forces of the police attempt 
escape, thus necessitating their guards to make use of their 
arms; the repetition of these incidents indicates that guard 
duty is not properly discharged nor the service rendered in 
the manner prescribed in the ordinance; and although this 
same law ordains that they be treated with consideration 
and humanity, it must never be understood that in fulfilling 
this requirement it is necessary to relax in the slightest de- 
gree the precautions of safety. 

Be pleased to instruct all the persons in your command 
that I am determined to execute the law to its full limit if 
another escape of a prisoner should occur. The Captain of 
the guard, or even the Chief of the command, may be held 
responsible, if it shall appear that due vigilance is not 
exercised to assure the proper performance by the indi- 
viduals of every class of the command of their respective 
duties. God keep you many years. 
Havana, October 15th, 1883. 
Denis, Prime Chief of Command. 



Preamble of the Decree regarding Reforms of 
the Plan of Studies, Published in the Offi- 
cial Gazette of Havana, Novem- 
ber 17th, 1871. 

Most Excellent Sir: 

Shortly after Y. Ex. entered upon the exalted station 
which you occupy, yoii charged the undersigned to devote 
himself with especial zeal to the investigation of the exist- 
ing Plan of Studies, to whose viciousness the origin of the 
insurrection of Yara has in great part been attributed, in 
view of the perversion of ideas and the demoralization of 
sentiments which for some time past had been going on 
under the influence of a bad system of education. This 
investigation concluded, he had the honor to transmit to Y. 
Ex. a report in which were indicated the defects of the sys- 
tem of Public Instruction and the reforms required, so that 
in future this element of the social organization may serve 
to. educate and espaniolize, as far as possible, the coming 
generations, to the end that the dominion of Spain in the 
Antilles may be permanently assured. 

So important is this subject and so deserving of profound 
thought that the undersigned has been impelled to define 
his ideas in extenso, and with the view to calling the care- 
ful attention of Y. Ex. to all the important points, he sub- 
mits the following: 


"One of the first duties" says the sage Balmes, "which 
should occupy the attention of rulers, and of all such as have a 
direct or indirect influence on society atid who interest them- 
selves for the good if their fellow-creatures, is, without doubt, 
elementary Instruction. If this is properly regulated and is 
preceded by religious and moral training, men will become 
more educated and less vicious, because the generality of men 
are not fitted for high scientific studies, nor destined to pursue 
litera.rg callings, but rather to live in humble circumstances, 
and they preserve to the end of their days that which, ivas 
taught them in early youth, without having occasion to add to 
their stock of knowledge other than the lessons of experience." 

This is so obvious to a person of education, who has hail 
occasion to study men, consider the events of history and 
meditate on the present times, that Y. Ex. will doubtless 
unhesitatingly assent to these propositions. The influence 
of the instruction given in early youth is so positively ef- 
fective because the mind of the child is like soft wax 
whereon any desired impression can be made, and whereon 
these impressions become so fixed, that they become like 
old paintings, which, notwithstanding the new pictures that 
may be wrought over them, reappear even after a great 
lapse of time, under the influence of a reactive agency. 
Man feels throughout his life the influence of the ideas and 
habits taught him in childhood. It happens sometimes 
that on leaving the parental roof to enter upon another 
sphere of life, he seems to change completely, but when the 
snows of time cool the ardor of his blood and temper the 
enthusiasm of a thoughtless spirit, the memories of those 
first inspirations return and he becomes another man, the 


man corresponding to the child that was, and to this reversion 
is applicable the saying that the aged become childish. 

But for the very reason that this early instruction is of 
such importance, we should proceed in regard to it with the 
greatest caution and prudence. There are two systems that 
may be followed, either to teach a little of everything, that 
is to say, to impress on the mind the principal ideas of all 
the various branches of human knowledge, or to teach a 
little thoroughly, not cultivating the memory alone, but 
developing the intelligence, step by step, without fatiguing 
its faculties. 

Formerly, in the times of so-called darkness, the process of 
education was very slow. The writer can speak of those times 
from experience; after spending a long time in learning the 
primary branches, which consisted only of reading, writing 
and arithmetic, and more especially Christian doctrine, ac- 
companied by religious practices, the youth proceeded to 
study Latin, and Latin only; then philosophy, which com- 
prised but three branches, divided into three courses, logic 
and metaphysics, physics and ethics, and moral philosophy, 
with which studies he was equipped to enter the professions 
of law, medicine or theology. To-day it is just the con- 
trary; one must go hurriedly into everything, learn a great 
deal in a short space of time, and reach manhood while still 
a child. That is the effect and character of the reaction; 
the intelligence must sparkle with a phosphorescent quick- 
ness; man must advance in mental development with 
locomotive speed ; in short, everything must keep step to 
the same rapid beat. 

Under these circumstances it was but natural that the 


Plan of Studies projected for this Island should be influ- 
enced by this common eagerness for hurry, and hence the 
defects of the system, defects which, as has been said, are 
the source of the evils which Public Instructioa has pro- 
duced. The realization of these objections suggests of itself 
that this system of vicious influences should be abandoned, 
and that a method be adopted dictated by prudent fore- 
sight, going backward a few steps, since the hurry and 
anxiety to do much in little time has obviously given such 
poor results. Moral and intellectual development should 
accord with the conditions of nature, as in the case of 
physical development, which proceeds in accordance with 
the natural laws of material conditions. Thus, it is well to 
observe what faculties the child possesses, so as to decide how 
best to cultivate them, and on this subject I yield my pen 
to that of the profound Catalonian thinker already quoted. 
u One of the facts," says Balmes, "which the teacher of 
primary studies should never forget, is that childhood has two 
very notable qualities, and according as one proceeds with re- 
gard thereto results ivill be fruitful or barren, very good or 
very bad. These qualities are: first, the capacity of receiving 
impressions ; second, the difficulty of comprehending many 
things at one time. The child may be compared to a level 
table covered ivith a very soft paste, which need be touched but 
very lightly to become impressed by the object touching it; it 
may, furthermore, be compared to a bottle with a very narrow 
neck, which, if it is attempted to fill it quickly, the liquid is 
spilled and, barely a few drops enter, bat if, on the contrary, 
the operation is slowly proceeded with, it might be filled to the 
brim, without any of the liquid intended for it being lost." 


The conclusions which the present writer deduces from the 
above is that in the existing Plan of Studies for primary in- 
struction, the branches of elementary agriculture, industry 
and commerce, mentioned in paragraph 5 of article 2, be 
suppressed, and likewise those of geometry, drawing, sur- 
veying, physics and natural history. 

This number of studies is too great; it is a labyrinth for 
the weak understanding of a child; these teachings can, at 
best, be impressed but very lightly on its understanding; 
and, easily impressed, they are as easily effaced by others, 
so that precious time is lost in useless and fatiguing effort, 
learning things which cannot be long retained. 

Another error committed in passing from the past 
methods to the present, in going at locomotive speed from 
restraint to liberty, is to make religious instruction second- 
ary to that of the arts and sciences, a fatal error, which has 
produced disastrous consequences. It was but natural that 
such should be the case. 

Intelligence is not the only attribute of man; he has also 
a conscience; and both finding expression through the will, 
they should be united by the link of morality. If the flame 
of intelligence is fanned to make it brighter, while conscience 
is left dormant, and both are left to themselves, then the 
will, having full sway, will be at the mercy of pleasure un- 
bridled by conscience. It follows obviously that individual 
activity will have no other curb than the law, which will 
always be eluded and thus the most healthy and robust society 
will become undermined and weak, and go onward towards 
dissolution. We have experience of this. France had a 
veritable furore for extending education, believing it to be 


the panacea for all evil, and see what have been the results. 
The criminal statistics afford us light on this subject, and here 
are the data obtained by Balines from a work entitled, "Edu- 
cation practique, ' ' which have been confirmed by the statistics 
of the succeeding years. In brief, the investigations made lead 
us to conclude, 1st, that the number of crimes and offences 
has increased year by year in proportion to the spread of 
education; 2d, that in these crimes or offences the number 
of the convicts who could read and write is one-fifth greater 
in proportion than the number of those who are entirely 
ignorant, while the proportion of those who had received an 
advanced education is two-thirds greater; 3d, that the 
degree of perversity in crime and the likelihood of escape 
from justice and from the penalty of the law is in direct pro- 
portion to the degree of education; 4th, that in the provinces 
where instruction has been most diffused crime is most 
abundant ; that is to say, morality is, in principle, opposed 
to education; 5th, that the recurrence of crime is more 
frequent in the case of those who have received instruction 
than among those who do not know how to read or write. 
As intelligence has gradually become disseminated the 
number of offences against person and property, of criminal 
assaults, of illegitimate unions, of foundlings, of cases of 
mental aberration, of suicides, have palpably increased, in 
proportion not alone to the extension, but also to the higher 
degree, of education. 

"So great an evil, a condition so contrary to the expec- 
tation of those who had looked for happy results from the 
growth of intelligence, attracted the attention of tli inking 
men. But where was the remedy ? Who could imagine 


that learning was a scourge that had to be suppressed? who 
dared to say that the schools must be closed and the place 
of the teacher given to the constable? Aimé Martin was 
the first to divine the truth, becoming convinced that instead 
of instructing it is necessary to educate, that while light- 
ing the fire of intelligence the heart must be also well 
directed; in a word, that religion is indispensable." 

But notwithstanding his good intentions, j^imé Martin 
was also in error. It would have been easy to follow his 
advice if only one religion — the Catholic religion — had 
existed in Europe, but since the Christian sects — offsprings 
of Protestantism— have become sub-divided and multiplied 
as they are, which religion was to be taught to the children? 
It was not to be expected that Aimé Martin and his friends 
should point to the Catholic as the best religion, and they 
did not. Aimé Martin himself formed a sect that had a 
little of everything except religious devotion, so it is clear 
that the evil, far from being remedied, would but thrive in 
proportion to the growth of this irreligious religion. Con- 
sequently the subsequent criminal statistics give evidence 
only of the increase of the general evil. The sad spectacle 
which France presents to-day is manifest evidence of what is 
herein stated. 

But the criminal statistics of Europe, examined in another 
aspect, demonstrate more clearly, if possible, the nature of 
the vice which contaminates the atmosphere in which it exists. 
Thus the statistics of suicide, which have recently been made 
known to us in contributions to the Diario de la Marina by 
Señor Lasagra, who has occupied himself with the analysis 


of a work exclusively devoted to the study of this important 
phenomenon. These statistics, leaving aside details which 
would take too much space, demonstrate the following very 
significant facts: 1st, that suicides are much more numerous 
in Protestant than in Catholic countries ; 2d, that they are 
more numerous in the capitals than in the rest of the 
country. In all France, says Lasagra, there are 110 
suicides per, million inhabitants; in Paris, 646; in Prussia, 
123, and in Berlin, 212. In Denmark, 288, and in Copen- 
hagen, 447. The same proportion of suicides is apparent 
in other nations. He then adds: "In conclusion, says the 
author of this interesting work, the principle fact developed 
is the general and rapid increase of suicides; this sad phe- 
nomenon leads us to inquire whether the modifications that 
have occurred in philosophic and religious opinions, whether 
the reforms effected in social and economic conditions, from 
the point of view of the degree of freedom given to individ- 
ual responsibility and enterprise, whether these have not 
engendered the decay and depression previously unknown." 
The thinker who studies history and reviews the course 
of philosophic and religious thought during the present cen- 
tury soon perceives where and whence the evil originates. 
The human conscience was declared free three centuries 
ago, thus making it at once judge and arbiter, and since then 
reason wanders desolate. Religions have multiplied, and 
where man does not adore himself as God, he is an atheist 
or indifferent. Philosophical sects also have sprouted from 
this individual self-sufficiency; the multiplicity of these 
schools has always and everywhere produced doubt and 
skepticism, which in their turn have engendered a material- 


ism whose only offspring is disbelief in virtue and morality. 
But how is it possible to avoid the utter depression of some, 
or the frenzied despair of others ? Some are tortured with 
constant unhappiness, without hope of the future, while 
others have their hearts filled with the poison of envy and 
the passion of pride. Aimé Martin's book on education 
was intended to cultivate mothers, Mme. Campan having 
assured Napoleon that the best education for women was 
that which formed the best mothers. But his book is rather 
calculated to create free women than good mothers ; he pro- 
posed to educate religious mothers because he understood 
that mere instruction was not sufficient to improve mankind, 
and yet his book is anything but religious. 

What are we to deduce from all this with regard to 
Cuba ? Pedro Agüero, a Cuban, who has busied himself 
with the study of public instruction on the Island, in a work 
written in 1866 on the basis of data and experience gathered 
as member of the Board of Higher Education, says: 
" Everywhere, in schismatic as well as in Catholic countries, 
in absolute monarchies as well as in democratic republics, 
law and custom, in other words, the government and the 
people, have made religion the basis of public instruction, 
recognizing in it the principle of all science and the origin 
of all virtue. " After presenting statistics showing that in 
Germany, England, France and the United States element- 
ary instruction is almost exclusively in the hands of the 
clergy or of religious organizations, he adds: "In Cuba, 
with the exception of establishments directed by religious 
orders, in which a truly Christian education is obtained, the 
moral and religious instruction is generally confined to an 


imperfect idea of Christian doctrine and of sacred history, 
without anything adapted to elevate the spirit and which 
should be held apart from teachings that tend only to culti- 
vate the intelligence. 

Our present system of public instruction naturally places 
religion in the first rank with other learning ; but besides, 
the right which, according to the ecclesiastical authorities, 
naturally pertains to them of directing the development of 
the moral and spiritual faculties of the child, it provides 
that the supreme civil government is to see that the respect- 
ive parish priests conduct reviews on moral and Christian 
doctrine in the primary schools at least once a week. Not- 
withstanding this, the priest and the teacher continue to be 
almost strangers, and from this divorce of the Church and 
the School result enormous evils for which it is necessary to 
provide a remedy. 

And what is to be this remedy ? It is very easy to find. 
As in medical science a knowledge of the cause of the 
disease renders it easy to cure the malady, so the Latin 
aphorism, sublata causa, tollitur efectus has become almost 
proverbial. Avoid, accordingly, this lamentable divorce. 
Christianize, or rather -Catholicize education by putting into 
effect the provisions of Article II of the Plan; put the Gov- 
ernmental and Municipal machinery of education in the hands 
of religious teaching orders, and the evil will disappear. 

Another important point is the method of education, and 
in regard to this also, two systems present themselves, that 
of liberty, and that of restriction. Which is the better? 
Agüero says in the work above quoted: "Education in 
Cuba is not free in the same sense as in the United States, 


where it is not restricted ; nor even as in England where 
public opinion, if not the law, somewhat controls it, since 
an official investigation exposed the vices of the old free 
system, and revealed the existence in the country of more 
than five hundred primary teachers who did not know how 
to write ; but it is as free as that of Germany and France, 
not to mention Spain, Italy and other countries which in 
this respect are about on the same level with us. 

" As regards the practice of both public and private in- 
struction, it is a well-known fact that inspection not having 
heretofore been exercised, nor the authority of the Govern- 
ment enforced in schools and colleges, the most absolute 
liberty has reigned both in form and spirit, in method as well 
as in doctrine ; it sometimes occurring that in matters of 
religion the latter has not been altogether orthodox. 

"It is not then a want of liberty, but rather, in some par- 
ticulars, an excess of it that is injuring education in Cuba ; 
a proof of this is the fact that in none of the large centers 
of Europe and America is the number of primary schools 
greater in proportion than in Havana, nor is there a propor- 
tionately greater number of lawyers, physicians, literateurs 
and students to be found elsewhere than in our Island. 

"Moral and religious education is usually neglected both 
by the family and by the teacher ; nor have the other 
branches been properly taught, owing to the lack of ade- 
quate means and the absence of a proper system of grada- 
tion in advancing studies ; teacher and pupil appear always 
eager to boast of precocity and to forestall time, instead of 
extending their knowledge and giving proof of real learn- 
ing. 1 ' 


These are grave assertions, Most Ex. Sir, and yet the 
undersigned, basing himself on the practical knowledge 
obtained by him in the course of his experience in connec- 
tion with public instruction, proposes to go beyond the 
ground taken in Agiiero's report. Not only has there been, 
and still continues to be, exercised in Cuba an excess of lib- 
erty in teaching, but this liberty has degenerated into a 
state of veritable anarchy. Articles 20, 149, 221, 222 and 
259 have been interpreted and applied with such latitude 
that many young men are admitted as a matter of right to 
courses after the term of matriculation is closed, or exam- 
ined before the conclusion of the course ; they take whatever 
course of study suits them and change it at pleasure ; or they 
study under private tutors, or at all events present certifi- 
cates to that effect, while persons lacking the qualifications 
stated in Article 259 have been priviledged as private teach- 
ers ; and all because of the inconsiderate eagerness to extend 
education, of the desire to learn a great deal in a short space 
of time, and to receive a degree as soon as possible, so as 
to kill the sick through ignorance, or to lose suits at law 
through a sacrifice of right to a garrulous loquacity. 

What must be the natural, logical consequences of this 
state of things? Y. Ex. already knows. Physicians with- 
out patients and lawyers without briefs, full of ambition 
and unable to attain their original aspirations, betake them- 
selves to conspiracy, which is an easier business, and per- 
haps more profitable. Thus, some, being incapable of 
teaching science, which they have not mastered, have taught 
evil or concealed ignorance, and others have taken to 
intrigue and to disturbing the public mind, thriving 


on the discord and disorder which they have managed to 
spread. The result of all this has been the insurrection 
which has so endangered the dominion of Spain in Cuba? 
and to subdue which has cost the nation so much of money 
and of blood, and Y. Ex. so much anxiety and labor. 

One of the first schools established in Havana, quite re- 
nowned, was that of Carraguao, and to appreciate the kind 
of education to be had there it is sufficient to read the fol- 
lowing, published in one of the principal organs of the 
traitors to the country: "El Demócrata" in a reference to 
the execution of Pedro Figueredo. "Don Manuel Fran- 
cisco Jáuregui, formerly teacher of mathematics in San 
Fernando, and some of the most learned of the exiles, con- 
stituted the faculty of the College of Carraguao, where 
Pedro Figueredo, Francisco Aguilera and many others who 
have since figured among the foremost of the enemies of 
Spanish tyranny were educated. From the lips of their 
masters, nearly all of whom were themselves victims of despot- 
ism, they frequently heard maxims which, in their tender 
years, could not but be deeply graven on their memory, and 
in time produce their natural fruit. " 

Afterwards there was established the College of El Sal- 
vador, directed by José de la Luz Caballero. Not a little 
has been said of this College as to its education being anti- 
Catholic and anti- national ; its friends and patrons always 
endeavored to dissipate these imputations as calumnies 
devised by envious rivals or by exaggerated and prejudiced 
patriots. La Revolución, however, has just published the 
following: "The Spaniard may say what he pleases of Don 
José de la Luz, but if the latter can see from the spiritual 


world what is going on here, he will rejoice at the result of 
his labors; he will sleep peacefully in his grave because his 
pupils know their duty, and because those who have not 
already sacrificed themselves for freedom are in the active 
field of the Revolution ; one and all gather to rear the 
edifice whose foundation lie, with his own hands, laid by 
preparing the future generations to vanquish tyranny and 
make the independence of the country triumphant." 

And finally, when a newspaper has occasion to print the 
biography of one who has paid with his life the penalty of 
his treachery on the rebel battlefield, before a file of Spanish 
muskets, or on the scaffold, especial mention has been made 
of his having been a teacher; of how he inspired the youth- 
ful mind with patriotism and the desire for Cuban liberty ; 
of how the lessons learned in the College of Don José de la 
Luz Caballero had urged him to the anti- national field. 
These sentiments have been expressed in the obituary articles 
inspired by the deaths of Izaguirre in Manzanillo, and 
Luis Ay estarán in Havana. 

What other fruit could be afforded, Most Ex. Sir, by an 
education so immoral as the one which teaches children to 
hate the land of their fathers, and the very fathers them- 
selves? Fatal inculcations ! To inspire perverse senti- 
ments, to incline the will to evil, to envelop the intelligence 
in mists of error, and kindle the fire of passion with 
diabolical ardor; inciting the spirit to rebel in behalf of 
false rights, conceived without the counterpoise of a sense oí 
duty ; this has been the work of the conspirators for many 
years ! The anxiety to propagate education, crushing and 


trampling upon the provisions of the law, was the object of 
the insurrectionaries of Yara. 

To teach without educating and to develop the intelli- 
gence without imbuing the heart with morality is an in- 
complete system, conducive to evil; it is to sow good and 
bad seed in the same furrow. But teaching to read, to 
write and to count, ignoring conscience, failing to develop 
in the tender minds of youth the idea of God, of a future 
life, or of natural law, is still worse; it is to permit them to 
take poison as nourishment, and deny them the antidote. 
Journals, novels and tracts are placed in the hands of the 
pupil, which he devours with avidity; his pride, his self-esteem 
and his evil passions are flattered by the honeyed doctrines, 
and he is unable to distinguish the good from the evil which 
enters into his soul because he has not been taught the 
rules of good and evil, and thus another soul is lost, another 
heart is made accessible to perversity. What fruit can be 
produced by bad seed sown on virgin soil and cultivated by 
tillers of evil design ? Even in text-books of elementary 
geography have wicked doctrines been inserted. In one of 
them we read that the greatest event of the present century 
in America was the revolt of Bolivar. 8ee under what 
seductive form the minds of children are predisposed to 
admire the crime of treason ! From admiring it to consider- 
ing it a patriotic duty, to desiring its enactment, there is 
but a brief step, to which the vivid and ardent imagination 
leads precipitately. To relate other analogous proceedings 
which have prepared the way for the insurrection at Yara 
would be but to tell Y. Ex. what you know full well. 

We now beg Y. Ex. to put a check on all this evil, 


caused by an excess of liberty in the matter and manner of 
instruction, by reforming the existing method, beginning 
with the enforcement of such restrictions as public opinion 
demands, and the interests of the country require. Give 
greater scope to religious training by instructors who are 
sincere, and above all, of great morality; by those whose re- 
ligious vocation consecrates their lives to teaching for the 
love of God; do away with the branches which fatigue 
without benefiting the weak understanding of the child ; 
arrange the methods and the studies in such manner as to 
do away with the confusion introduced under cloak of simul- 
taneous courses and special examinations; suppress private 
teaching, and exercise great vigilance in seeing that the 
Catholic clergy are entrusted with the enforcement of the 
plan of studies ; such are the reforms which should be 
effected in the methods of public instruction. 

Y. Ex. was pleased to accept these considerations and 
granted to the subscriber the authority prayed for, to 
reform the plan in accordance therewith. What has thus far 
been done by virtue of that authority, is the reform of the 
secondary grade of instruction, which I now submit for the 
approval of Y. Ex. ; the other projects relating to the sub- 
ject I will transmit hereafter, trusting that Y. Ex. may 
sanction them with your superior judgment. 

Havana, August 25th, 1871. 

Rámon María de Araistegui. 

cuba and the cubans. 299 

1851. April 25th. — Royal Order prohibiting the 
introduction into the island of publications 
which tend to inspire ideas pernicious to the 
tranquility of the country. 

Most Ex. Sir: The Queen has been made acquainted 
with Y. Ex.'s letter number 66, dated March 10th ultimo, 
in which you report having prohibited the introduction 
into that Island of the "Bevista de España y de sus posesi- 
ones de Ultramar" because of its containing pernicious 
principles and ideas. H. M. is pleased to approve the 
measure adopted by Y. Ex. and at the same time charges 
Y. Ex., as I affirm by Royal Order, to subject to like pro- 
hibition all publications tending to inspire pernicious ideas, 
endangering the peace of those dominions or their union 
with the Home Country. God, etc., Madrid, April 25th, 

To the Governor Captain General of the Island of Cuba. 

1856. September 20th. — Royal Order decreeing 
that neither the antilles nor philippine islands, 
except the marianas, be considered as places of 
confinement, exile or deportation. 

Most Ex. Sir : The Minister of Public Affairs charged 
with the Concerns of the Colonies, hereby declares to the 
Ministers of War, of Pardons and Justice, and of Govern- 
ment, the following : 

In view of various communications from the Governors 
General of the Colonial Provinces, in which they lament 
the evil effect on the public spirit of those countries, pro- 


duced by persons deported thither for political reasons, and 

1st. That it is most difficult if not impossible that those 
so deported should maintain during their confinement a 
desirable degree of circumspection and moderation in the 
manifestation of their ideas, whether in the circle of their 
private life, or in the business intercourse and occupations 
which they pursue as a means of livelihood. 

2d. That the severity of misfortune, to which men are 
prone to solely ascribe the sad results of their own errors, 
often sours their temper, embitters their minds, and moves 
them to wrath and detraction. That when this arises from 
political disasters, it always engenders, even in the 
soundest moral natures, an irresistible and fatal tendency to 
a detestation, or at all events to an invincible aversion, for 
the principle of authority in all its manifestations, religious, 
social and political, inasmuch as in its immediate, if not its 
ultimate representatives, they discern the source of their 
misfortunes and sorrows. 

3d. That the exiles are always imbued with the spirit 
of restlessness and prone to migrations peculiar to political 
agitators; they infuse the turbulent spirit of Peninsular 
agitations and discord into those remote regions, which are 
under a special system of government, and which require, 
above all, that public opinion remain undisturbed and as 
uniform as possible in its estimate of public affairs. 

They lower the prestige which Spanish rulers should 
uniformly enjoy in the Colonial provinces, by manifestations 
of ill-will and discontent, which defeated politicians cannot 
but betray in their words and actions. They are always 


disposed to stigmatize the victors as unjust and inconsistent, 
and to take as a martyrdom that which is but a proper and 
merited punishment; and finally the wretchedness of exile 
sometimes clouds their understanding to such an extent as 
to bring them to sacrifice love of country and national 
interests to their political resentment. They confuse the 
due vengeance of those who pass sentence upon partisan 
offences with the rancors and hostile designs of those who 
are enemies of the country and inimical to everything that 
is Spanish. 

4th. That those deported beyond the sea for political 
reasons are not necessarily or usually the leaders or heads 
of the popular revolts but the instruments, and because of 
their character and temperament they do not settle down 
(not even desiring to do so if they could), to a measured, 
orderly, methodical life, under tranquil, pacific, and normal 

5th. That it is extremely dangerous to inject these dis- 
turbing elements into communities from which all sources 
of inquietude and alarm should be withheld with the 
greatest solicitude ; into countries wherein it is desirable that 
not even the slightest echoes of our civil discords should be 
heard, and to the inhabitants of which all the members of 
the Spanish race should appear as united in one common 

6th. That experience fully confirms the accuracy of the 
above observations. Because not only the exiles, but even 
those who, owing to political mutations, have voluntarily 
left the home country and chosen to reside in the colo- 
nial provinces, have at all times been (with some hon- 


orable exceptions) an element of moral or material disturb- 
ance in those countries. Because, in the rebellion of our 
former dominions on the American continent, many of the 
principal promoters, instigators and agents were Spaniards 
whom political rancor and frenzy converted into infamous 
criminals capable of the most villainous treachery ; or who, 
by their ungovernable conduct and unreasoning complaints, 
by their writings, or by overt rebellion, unruly and 
reckless, gave more or less directly or more or less openly, 
substantial aid to the carrying out of projects for separation 
from the home country. Because, in the conspiracies 
hatched in the Island of Cuba, there have always figured 
in more or less important relations, Spaniards who forsook 
their country for political reasons. Thus it happened dur- 
ing the term of General Tacon ; certain Spaniards were the 
source of great uneasiness, for whether through imprudence 
or evil intent, they never lost an opportunity of instilling 
in the colony the poisonous virus of their extravagant doc- 
trines and partisanship, or rather of the school of irrecon- 
cilable prejudice to which they belonged. 

From that time dates the origin of the evil spirit which, 
in a sense hostile to the interests of Spain, begins to spread 
in the colony where heretofore Spain has been venerated to 
a degree almost amounting to superstition. 

And 7th. That it is imperative that evils so grave and 
which may be so easily guarded against, be prevented by no 
longer treating the colonial provinces as colonial prisons, 
even in cases when, under suspension of constitutional guar- 
antees, the inexorable requirements of public safety render 
deportations necessary. The Queen has, therefore, been 


pleased to command that in the future, neither judiciously 
nor executively shall the Antilles or the Islands of the 
Philippine Archipelago, except the Marianas, be designated 
as places of confinement, of exile, or of deportation. 

Royal Decree communicated, etc. — Madrid, September 
20th, 1856. 

To the Governing Captain Generals of Cuba, Porto-Rico 
and the Philippine Islands. 



From the Civil Government of Havana concerning 
the suppression of highway robbery. 

In the circular letter, dated August 1st ultimo, which his 
Excellency, the Governor General, was pleased to dictate 
for the purpose of directing generally a more active and 
efficient repression of highway robbery, occasion was taken 
to note that one of the causes which contributed to render 
difficult the total extirpation of this disturbing and danger- 
ous element of society was the more or less positive protec- 
tion which the bandits usually receive from the country 
people. Mauy of these, either through culpable complicity, 
or from lack of energy and courage, contribute to making 
more difficult, when not completely defeating, the action oí 
the authorities, by maliciously concealing the passage of 
bandits through their fields, or reporting it too late, and in 
many cases withholding information of important matters 
which, on this account, remain ignored or come too late to 
the knowledge of the public officers who are charged with 
prosecuting and punishing offenders according to law. 

The responsibility which thereby devolves upon tho^e 
who so conduct themselves cannot be more palpable, nor can 
the consequences to the safety of persons and property be 
more fatal than to the administration of justice, whose rep- 
resentatives thus see depreciated the muniments of the law, 
over whose integrity and sacred ministry it is their duty to 
keep watch. 


Such criminal proceedings cannot and should not receive 
toleration of any kind, and I therefore consider it abso- 
lutely necessary to decree the following: 

1st. All persons are under the imperative duty of 
immediately informing the nearest authorities or police 
force of the presence of malefactors in the house or property 
in which they may, either permanently or temporarily, be 

2d. Dela} r in communicating said information, if it exceed 
the time deemed necessary in the judgment of the authorities, 
will be considered as shielding the malefactors and be 
made the subject of a due investigation, the result of which 
will be made known to the proper authorities, who will 
thereupon proceed according to law. 

8d. The local mayors will bear in mind the various 
circulars and instructions, public as well as private, which 
have been addressed to them concerning the adoption of 
measures in case of the- presence of bandits in their respec- 
tive localities, and more particularly the speedy report of 
all such matters to this office, to the General of the Island, 
and to the neighboring authorities and forces, in conformity 
with the instructions aforesaid. 

4th. In order that no one may allege ignorance respect- 
ing the responsibility devolving upon his or her actions or 
omissions in this matter, the mayors are hereby required to 
give these provisions all possible publicity by means of 
notices or proclamations, or by personal notification to the 
owners or administrators of properties if they deem such 
procedure requisite. 

Havana, November 14th, 1887. — Lais Alonso Martin. 





No. 1. Raimundo Cabrera, author of this work. 

No. 2. José de la Luz Caballero.— Born in Hav- 
ana July 11th, 1800. His education was directed by the 
Rev. José A. Caballero. Studied in the Seminary of St. 
Carlos, where he became Professor in 1824. Travelled 
through the United States and Europe until 1831. Pub- 
lished in Paris a translation, with notes, of Volney' s "Trav- 
els through Europe and Syria." Was elected member of 
the Royal Academy of Agrarian Economics of Florence. 
Published a set of graded reading books. Became Presi- 
dent in 1832 of the great College of Carraguao, where he 
founded a Chair of Chemistry, established a course of phil- 
osophy and published his report on the Instituto Cubano. In 
1834, elected Vice-President of the Sociedad Patriótica. Pub- 
lished an ' 'Index to Philosophical Subjects" (Elenco sobre 
materias filosóficas) in 1835. Received the degree of Doctor 
of Laws in 1836. Elected President of the Sociedad Eco- 
nómica in 1838, and re-elected in 1840. Held the Chair of 
Philosophy in the College of San Francisco (Havana) until 
1843. In 1840 published his Impugnación al exanen de 
Cousin on Locke's Essay on the Understanding. In 1841 


was made corresponding member of the Academia de Buenas 
Letras, of Barcelona. In 1842 he initiated and effected the 
revocation of the action of the Sociedad Económica, expelling 
from membership the English writer Tiirnbiill, Consul of 
Great Britain , who was disliked because of his anti-slavery 
ideas. La Luz formulated a strong protest againstthis resolu- 
tion, which latter had been suggested by the local govern- 
ment. Returned in 1848 from Europe, where he had gone 
to recuperate his health, for the courageous purpose of 
appearing before the Military Commission, accused of hav- 
ing taken part in the Negro conspiracy. He was acquitted. 
In 1848 he established the famous college FA Salvador, 
over which he presided until his death, June 22d, 1862. 
Under his guidance were developed the men who in latter 
days have most distinguished themselves in Cuba for their 
patriotism and learning. He was a just man, a good 
patriot, a great character, and a perfect educator. Amid 
the oppressive atmosphere of the Colonies, where every 
manifestation of thought was a crime, suspected and perse- 
cuted, he was always resolute in teaching the doctrines 
which redeem the spirit and develop character. His cog- 
nomen, Don Pepe, so popular and venerated, signifies in 
Cuba not only a philosopher and an ideal, but stands as a 
symbol — that of protest against tyranny; that of the peace- 
ful effort which extirpates error and sows the seed of all 
that is good, of truth and of justice. 

No. 3. Morro Castle and Light-House. — Built on 
a rock at the entrance of the port of Havana in 1589 
(Antonelli, Designer). Finished in 1597, during the reign 


of Philip II, while Captain General finan Tejeda was 
Governor of Cuba. 

No. 4. Francisco Arango y Parreño. — Born in 
Havana, May 22d, 1765. Educated at the Seminary of San 
Carlos. Studied law at the Pontifical University. In 1787 
went to Spain, where, in 1789, he graduated in his chosen 
profession. Deputy in the Municipal Council of Havana 
before the age of twenty-five. To him are due the munici- 
pal reforms of 1789-94. Improvements in agriculture and 
commerce and much of the progress and enterprise devel- 
oped in the subsequent intellectual and material advance of 
the Island are traceable to his influence, notwithstanding 
his mistaken support of the African slave trade, which 
he afterwards rectified by demanding its abolition. 
He was President of the Sociedad Patriótica, which he 
greatly promoted. In 1792 he published a treatise on 
Agriculture in Cuba and succeeded in establishing in 
Havana a Chamber of Commerce and a Mercantile Tribu- 
nal. In 1793 he published his brilliant project of a tour of 
investigation through England, France and their Colonies, 
which led to his being commissioned by Count Montalvo to 
make a tour of scientific observation in those countries, with 
the view to studying their industrial improvements and intro- 
ducing them into Cuba. He initiated the establishment of 
the Royal Consulate, and was the first incumbent of the 
office. He was one of five chosen by the Sociedad Patriótica 
to edit the Papel Periódico; became legal adviser of the 
Court of Appeals. In 1794 he published in England a 
paper on the evils resulting from the exclusive privileges 


granted to the refineries of the Home Country, and on his 
return in 1795, a narrative of his travels. He introduced 
into Cuba the sugar cane of the Sandwich Islands. In 
all his enterprises lie had the effective support of General 
Luis de las Casas, who confided to him in 1803 a delicate 
diplomatic mission in Guarico, of which he gave an account 
in a memoir printed in 1832. Appointed supervisor of the 
tobacco industry in 1805. He had to combat the abuses 
growing out of an odious monopoly ; published a report on 
this subject. But his great work, that w T hich afforded the 
capstone of his reputation as statesman and as jurist was the 
obtainment, in 1815, of free trade for the ports of Cuba, 
a result due to his labors and his luminous reports and 
dispatches. During various journeys to the Home Country, 
he risked his fortune and his health in waging hot battle 
against the persistent holders of the monopoly. There was 
no enterprise of public interest, no movement conducive 
to the good of Cuba with which the name of this eminent 
man was not associated. He contributed largely to the 
improvement of education. Died March 21st, 1837. His 
complete works have recently been published in Havana 
in two volumes. Pezuela considers him "the man who has 
most influenced the destinies of his country," and Baron 
von Humboldt calls him its "most eminent statesman." 

No. 5. Calle de El Prado. An avenue laid out in 
1772 under the name of Paseo del prado; it began at the 
Calle de Neptuno (Neptune St.), where there existed a 
fountain of this name, and terminated on the beach ; it is 


now longer, beginning at the wall of the arsenal. The view 
represents the first section. 

No. 6. Gran Hotel Inglaterra is situated in the 
most central and frequented part of Havana, facing the fine 
Parque Central, near the theatres and public offices; was 
recently reconstructed, tastefully improved, and luxuriantly 
furnished. The rooms are large, well ventilated and com- 
fortable. Has drawing and reading rooms, elevators, 
telephone and mail service, and all the conveniences of the 
best European and American hotels. 

No. 7. Count of Pozos Dulces. — Born in Havana, 
September 24th, 1809. Was educated in Baltimore, and 
returned to Cuba in 1829. Settled in Paris in 1842, and 
devoted himself earnestly to scientific studies. Possessed of 
a store of learning, he returned to devote his energies to 
his native land, and in 1849 his treatise on the Fisheries of 
Cuba was adjudged the award of merit by the Lyceum. 
In 1851, as counselor to the Board of Public Works, 
he presented an admirable Report on the institution of 
chemical investigations. In 1854 the government con- 
sidered his presence in Cuba prejudicial. He was imprisoned 
in the Morro and exiled to Osuna. He published, in Paris, 
an account of the agricultural work and population of Cuba, 
in which he combated colonization with negro immigrants. 
In 1860 he published a collection of articles on agriculture, 
industry, science and other branches of interest to Cuba, 
having previously, in 1859, published La Cuestión de 
Cuba, works written while in exile. On returning to 


Cuba, he founded El Porvenir, a newspaper devoted to the 
arts and agriculture. Co-operated with Don José Quintín 
Suzarte in founding the famous journal El Siglo, the noted 
champion of political reforms, which he managed after 
Suzarte. In 1865 he was elected by the municipality of 
Villa Clara, Commissioner on the Committee of Inquiry at 
Madrid, where he advocated the immigration of whites and 
other political reforms. The commission was, however, 
dissolved by the government, and its noble endeavor fell 
through. The strong protest of the commissioners was 
drafted by the Count, who returned to Cuba convinced of 
the utter futility of such efforts. Resumed the management 
of El Siglo, and colaborated in various journals until the 
revolution of 1868. In 1869 his property was confiscated 
and he emigrated to Paris, living there in poverty, eking 
out a subsistence with his pen, in contributions to numerous 
Spanish publications. 

His name figures in all the literary and other associations 
which have contributed to the intellectual advancement of 
Cuba. Died in Paris, October 24th, 1877. 

No. 8. Papel Periódico. First perodical in the Is- 
land of Cuba. Its publication was commenced October 31st, 
1790, under the auspices of the Sociedad Económica, which 
put it in charge of a committee consisting of five members. 
It was edited by the distinguished men of the day — Arango, 
the priest Caballero, Romay, the poet Zequeira, and others. 
It was the size of half a sheet of foolscap folded in two, 
with four leaves, and appeared on Sundays and Thursdays.. 


No. 9. Gaspar Betancourt Cisneros. (El Luga- 
reño.) Born in Puerto Principe, April 28th, 1803. Edu- 
cated in the United States, and there colaborated in the Men- 
sajero Semanal. Returned to Cuba in 1832, and both in the 
Gaceta, of Puerto Principe, and afterwards in El Fanal, 
published brilliant scientific, literary and critical writings 
on agriculture, industry, colonization, etc. Promoted pub- 
lic instruction, founded schools for the poor, and also 
taught in them personally; made a scientific excursion over 
the Island. Founded an agricultural colony; projected and 
established the railway from Nuevitas to Puerto Principe, 
and was President of the railway company; established 
cattle fairs in the Province. In 1846 was imprisoned, 
exiled, and his property confiscated ; lived by teaching in 
the United States. Afterwards went to Europe, and under 
amnesty returned to Cuba (1861). Colaborated subse- 
quently in El Siglo. On account of ill health did not ac- 
cept the candidacy for membership of the Colonial Com- 
mittee of Inquiry. Died in December, 1866. 

No. 10. José Quintín Suzarte. Born in Havana, Octo- 
ber 31st, 1819. Educated in the Seminary. A distinguished 
poet, publicist and political economist. Colaborated in all 
the periodicals of his time. Founded La Siempreviva; wrote 
fiction. Settled in Caracas, where he discharged various 
public offices. In 1847 returned to Havana ; continued 
his journalistic efforts, and managed El Faro Industrial. 
Founded El Artista, and the daily newspaper El Siglo, in 
which he began the valiant defense of the social and political 
interests of his oppressed country, and which was continued 


by Pozos Dulces. Director of the Institute of Secondary 
Education of Matanzas, and editor of the newspaper La 
Aurora del Yumuri. In 1868 emigrated to Mexico, where 
he continued to practice journalism. After the peace of 
Zanjón, in 1880, he published a treatise on economic ques- 
tions and founded the paper El Amigo del Pais. Died in 
Havana, 1887. 

No. 11. Ricardo del Monte. Born in Cimmarones, 
Cardenas, 1830. Educated in the United States, traveled 
through Europe and colaborated in various Spanish 
journals. Colaborated with Suzarte, Pozos Dulces, and 
other writers of the time in all the periodicals which, from 
1847 to 1868, mirrored the intellectual advance of Cuba. 
After the peace of Zanjón he managed the newspaper El 
Triunfo, now known as El Pais, organ of the Autonomist 
party, of whose Executive Committee he is a member. 
Ex-Provincial Deputy. He is a chaste and admirable 
writer and a distinguished critic. 

No. 1 2. Francisno A. Conte. Born in Cadiz ; a dis- 
tinguished Spanish writer and economist. Settled in Cuba, 
where he has practiced the profession of journalism with 
brilliant success. Since the peace of Zanjón he has de- 
voted his pen to the social, political and economic reforms 
of the Colony, and to the cause of colonial Autonomy. 
Member of the Executive Committee of the Autonomist 
party. Among other works which attest his merits, may 
be mentioned Los unos y los otros, recently published, and 
Las aspiraciones del Partido Liberal, which first appeared 
in the periodical Revista Cubana. 


No. 13. José Antonio Cortina. Born March 19th, 
1852. Educated in Havana. Studied law, and completed 
the course in Madrid, 1873. Founded in Havana, in 
1877, the well-known Revista de Cuba, a literary and scien- 
tific magazine, in which the most notable writers of the 
country colaborated, and which was awarded a gold medal 
at the Amsterdam Exposition. Member of the Executive 
Committee of the Autonomist party, 1878. Gained great 
popularity as a public speaker. Elected Deputy to the 
Cortes in 1881, but the session being adjourned he did not 
take his seat. Published various poetical compositions. 
Died November, 1883 ; thus unhappily extinguishing the 
well-founded hopes which the country had centered on this 
gifted and patriotic young man. 

No. 14. José Antonio Saco. Born in Bayamo, May 
7th, 1797. Entered the Seminary of Havana at twelve 
years of age, and afterwards attained the Chair of Philoso- 
phy in succession to his former teacher Várela. In 1824 
left for the United States, and later on went to Europe 
where he founded El Mensajero Semanal. Translated Hein- 
ecius' Roman Law. In 1833 his essays on the roadways of 
the island of Cuba, and on vagrancy and means for extirpat- 
ing it, obtained first prizes in the competition opened by the 
Sociedad Patriótica. In 1832 he returned to Cuba and 
became manager of the Revista Bimestre Cubana, which he 
so distinguished with his important essays on statistics, 
immigration, abolition of the prescribed system of educa- 
tion, etc., that the publication came to be regarded as the 
leading periodical in the Spanish dominions. At the same 


time he directed the College of Buena Vista, until, like all 
eminent Cuban patriots, he was accorded the sad but glori- 
ous lot of exile. Migrated to England. Maintained in the 
journals of Madrid the necessity of reforms in Cuba, and 
in spite of Tacon's opposition was three times successively 
elected Deputy to the Cortes. But the Spanish Congress 
denied the Cubans the right of representation, and Saco, 
who was not permitted to sit in the Cortes, drafted, and 
with his companions, published the forceful and famous 
protest which completed his renown. Afterwards visited 
Germany, Italy, Austria, Portugal and Switzerland, and 
fixed his residence in Paris. In 1848 opposed, in a pamph- 
let, a suggested annexation of Cuba to the United States. 

Had permission to return to Cuba under the amnesty of 
1854, but did not avail himself of it until 1861, when he 
did so temporarily for the purpose of promoting the estab- 
lishment of a journal in Madrid to defend Cuban interests, 
going back to stay permanently in Paris. In 1866 he was 
elected by Santiago de Cuba to represent that province on 
the Committee of Inquiry, in which he took an active and 
efficient part. Signed with the three Commissioners the 
protest against the renewed fraud of the Madrid Govern- 
ment. Besides numerous minor works, making up the 
Papeles de Saco and Colección postuma, he published the His- 
toria de la esclavitud. In 1879 was again elected Deputy 
to the Cortes for Santiago de Cuba, but did not occupy the 
post by reason of his sudden death, September 26th, 1879. 

No. 15. Junta de Fomento. This cut represents the 
building occupied by the famous Junta de Fomento (Board 


of Public Works), a body in which the most distinguished 
men of the country have figured, and to whose initiative 
are due its most important reforms and improvements; 
among these is the construction of the first railway in Cuba, 
in 1833, before any had been built in Spain. The terminal 
station was called " Villanueva" in memory of the Count 
of Villauueva, Superintendent of the Island, who favored 
the enterprise. 

No. 16. Leopoldo Cancio. Born in Saucti-Spiritus, 
May 30th, 1851. Educated in the College of San Salva- 
dor under the guidance of José M. Zayas. Graduated in 
law at the University of Havana, 1873. In 1878, elected 
member of the Executive Committee of the Autonomist 
party, of which he was one of the founders. Deputy to 
the Cortes from the District of Las Villas in 1879, but did 
not occupy his place. Is a distinguished writer, journalist, 
and lawyer, and one of the men whose erudition and patri- 
otism reflects credit on the college founded by "Don Pepe" 
(de la Luz). 

No. 17. Jose Silveíro Jorrin. Was born in Havana 
June 20th, 1816. Educated in the College of Carraguao 
under José de la Luz. Graduated in law at the University 
of Havana in 1841. Traveled through the United States 
and Europe. Returned to Havana and devoted himself to 
the practice of his profession with great success. Was 
appointed Deputy Judge of the Court of Havana, and sub- 
sequently Judge of that of Burgos, which latter post he soon 
resigned. Counselor and syndic of the Municipality of 


Havana. Discharged many important offices; among 
others the commission for the establishment of a new Ceme- 
tery, on which he made a notable report. A zealous pro- 
moter and patron of public instruction. In 1839 he wrote a 
treatise on free-hand drawing, published by the Board of 
Public Works. In 1845 his brochure on the establish- 
ment of a normal school was awarded a prize. Published 
numerous articles on pedagogics and popular education and 
started the project to erect a new University Building. 
Inspector of Schools and member of the Public Board of 
Education. Delegated by the government to preside over 
the examinations of graduates in law; promoted scientific 
agriculture by distributing publications on the subject 
freely among the country people. Donated an extensive 
collection of works on Agriculture to the Sociedad Económ- 
ica. Donated $4,000 towards establishing fellowships of 
agricultural science in French and Belgian schools. Was 
made honorary member of the Sociedades de Amigos del 
País of Havana and of Santiago. Colaborated in many of 
the scientific and literary journals published in Cuba since 
1835. Was exiled in 1869. During his exile published 
anonymously the famous treatise entitled ''Ginebra. " 
Translated Tacitus. For his work, Disquisiciones Colum- 
biajias, he was awarded a bronze medal at the Amsterdam 
Exposition. Corresponding member of the Historical Soci- 
ety of New York. Elected Deputy to the Cortes by the 
Autonomist party in 1879; twice elected Senator by the 
province of Puerto Principe, which office he now fills for 
the University of Havana. A brilliant orator, effective 
writer and accomplished linguist, a man of wisdom and a 


persevering patriot, he is justly regarded ns one of the most 
distinguished Cubans, not only in his own land hut abroad. 
His country anxiously awaits the publication of his work 
on the "Life and Voyages of Christopher Columbus," to 
which he has devoted long years of labor and investigation. 

No. 18. Sala Jorkin. The cut represents one of the 
galleries in the Library of the Sociedad Económica, founded 
and maintained by private endowments. It bears the 
name of Jorrin since June, 1880, in memory of the large 
sums donated by its honorary member, José Silverio Jorrin, 
whose portrait in oil ornaments the central nave. 

No. 19. Juan Bautista Armenteros. Born in Puen- 
tas Grandes, May 8th, 1833. Bachelor of Laws. Foun- 
der of the Autonomist party, and member of its Executive 
Committee, ex-counsellor of the Municipality of Havana, to 
which post he was elected in 1879. As Librarian of the So- 
ciedad Económica he gave most valuable service to that insti- 
tution, referred to previously in this work, restoring the 
library, which had been completely abandoned during the 
revolutionary period. 

No. 20. Carlos Navarrete y Romay. Born in Hav- 
ana, 1837. Lawyer, writer of prose and poetry, whose 
name figures in many of the publications of the period from 
1850 to 1868. Published a volume of lyric poems, highly 
praised by the critics. President of the Lyceum of Guana- 
bacoa, 1867, and Rector of the Beneficencia institute in 
1 880. Present Librarian of the Sociedad Económica. 


No. 21. Enrique Pineiro. Born December 19th, 1839. 
Graduated in law 1863, traveled through Europe by mean.* 
of the legacy left him with this object by his teacher, José 
de la Luz Caballero, of whose college he was sub-director in 
1862; became known as a brilliant orator and as a critic 
Contributed largely to the scientific and literary journalism 
of the country up to 1869, in which year he emigrated to 
New York and took an active part in the Revolutionary 
Junta; at this period he published various historical and 
political brochures. Returned to Cuba after the peace of 
Zanjón and now resides in Paris, where he published, in 
1880, Estudios y Conferencias and Poetas famosos del siglo 
XIX (18&3), works which alone suffice to justify his high 
reputation, placing him among the most distinguished of his 

No. 22. José Ignacio Rodriguez. Born in Havana. 
Graduate in law, 1851. Known first to the public by his 
thesis Utilidad de la Historia. Doctor of Philosophy in 

1855. Professor of Philosophy in the University of Hav- 
ana, where he had previously studied. Appraiser of the 
Board of Public Education ; Magistrate ; Secretary of the 
Sociedad Económica, in which office he rendered distin- 
guished services. Published a text-book on chemistry in 

1856. He occupied a conspicuous place as a writer during 
the period from 1850 to 1868. Was exiled in 186<S and 
settled in Washington, where has devoted to Cuba his 
labors and talents as demonstrated by his articles in the 
Monitor Republicano of Mexico, and in other publications, 
and by his works Vida de Don José de la Luz, 1874, and 
Vida de Don Felix Várela, 1875. 


No. 23. Juan Gualberto Gomez. Born in Santa 
Ana, Matanzas, July 12th, 1854. Educated in Havana 
under the guidance of the mulatto poet, Antonio Medina. 
Went to Paris to learn the trade of carriage making, which 
he abandoned to enter a school of engineering. Poverty 
obliged him to give up his study and become a journalist. 
Traveled through the French Antilles, gaining his liveli- 
hood by teaching and clerking. In 1878 he settled in 
Mexico, and after the peace of Zanjón returned to Havana 
where he colaborated in the periodicals published by the 
Marquis of Sterling. In 1879 he founded the newspaper 
La Fraternidad, devoted to the interests of the colored race. 
Deported to Ceuta in 1880, he remained there 20 months. 
He proceeded to Madrid and acted as substitute for Labra 
in the management of La Tribuna. Published several, 
essays, and acted as correspondent for various journals. 
Returned to Havana in 1890 and became manager of La 
Fraternidad; is at this writing suffering renewed imprison- 
ment for political offence against the press laws. He is a 
Cuban of energy and talent who does honor to his country 
and his race. 

No. 24. Rafael M. Merchan. Born in Manzanillo, 
where he began his literary work by colaborating in La 
Aurora and in the Eco de Cuba. Edited, together with 
Pozos Dulces, El Siglo, and later El Pais. Author of the 
famous article Laboremus, which was an effective appeal 
for the revolution. Exiled in 1KH9, he settled in New 
York, taking part in the work of the revolutionary Junta. 
He now resides in Bogota; is a forceful polemic writer and 


has published, among other interesting works, Estudios 

No. 25. Enrique Jose Varona. Was born in Puerto 
Principe in April, 1849, and was educated in the College of 
San Francisco in that city. Colaborated in El Fanal, and 
in 1867 his odes on the death of El Lugareño received an 
award from the Lyceum of Puerto Principe. In 1868 he 
published a collection of verses, entitled Anacreónticas, and 
in the two following years two small volumes of "Poesías y 
Paisajes cubanos" Together with Várela and Sellen he 
published the volume of Arpas Amigas. But his fame rests 
not alone on his poetic productions. Varona, without 
academic degrees, without having passed the threshold of 
the collegiate halls, is not only a fine writer but a linguist, 
a philsopher and a sage. He contributes largely to local, 
national and foreign publications, and is now editing La 
Revista Cubana, founded by Cortina, and which still con- 
tinues to be one of the best magazines of its kind in the 
Spanish language. A mere enumeration of the works of 
this gifted writer will suffice as indication of the high place 
due him, notwithstanding his youth, among Cuban notabili- 
ties. Juicios críticos sobre el Diccionario provincial ele 
Pichardo, 1876. Sobre la Filosofía Positiva de Andrés Poey, 
1878. Sobre las Conferencias de Piñeiro, 1880. Obser- 
vaciones sobre la Gramática é Historia de la Lengua. 
Ojeada sobre el movimiento intelectual de América. Study 
on El personaje bíblico Caín. Disertaciones on Victor 
Hugo, Emerson, Cervantes; Essay on Realism and Idealism; 
Discourses in the Sociedad Antropológica, of which he is 


President; and finally liis three last works on Psychology, 
Logic and Ethics, which have extended his reputation to 
foreign lands, where they have been translated ; they serve 
as text-books in Universities of repute, but not, indeed in 
those of Cuba, which confine themselves to diffusing the 
doctrines of Balmes and other Roman Catholic thinkers. 

No. 26. Principal Newspapers of Havana. The 
engraving represents a collection of the newspapers of the 
Capital of Cuba. El Pais, organ of the Autonomists; 
Diario de la Marina, organ of the Conservatives; La Lucha, 
a republican journal of large circulation; Ij<i Discusión, 
Autonomist, very popular; Im Tribuna and La Fraternidad, 
Independent; La Habana Elegante, El Figaro and Gil Bias, 
literary, comic and satirical weeklies: La Unión, published 
in Güines ; Jja Revisto de Derecho, organ of the legal 
fraternity, and finally the magazine, La Revista Cubana, 
edited by E. J. Varona. 

No. 27. Antonio Bachiller y Morales. Born in 
Havana, June 7th, 1812. Educated in the Seminary of 
San Carlos. Graduated in law 1837. From 1829 to 1868 
he figured as founder and colaborator in the principal pub- 
lications which characterized that period of our literature. 
His most important didactic works are Cultivo de la Caña; 
Estudio sobre la propiedad ; Filosofía del Derecho; Anti- 
güedades Americanas; Tradiciones Americanas; Historia 
de las letras en Cuba, and others. He filled some of the 
most important public offices ; was President of the Institute 
of Higher Education, in which capacity he greatly fur- 


thered the advance of the country. Was an exceedingly 
laborious bibliophile and historian. His most remark- 
able work is, without doubt, Cuba Primitiva, on the origin, 
languages, traditions, etc., of the aborigines. Was exiled 
in 1869 and his property confiscated. Colaborated in im- 
portant foreign magazines. Died in Havana, 1888. 

No. 28. José Maria Heredia. Born in Santiago de 
Cuba, December 31st, 1803. Educated in Caracas and in 
Mexico. Graduated in law at the University of Havana 
in 1823. He cultivated poetry from childhood, and trans- 
lated Florión, Alfieri, Ossian, Horace and other writings. 
In 1824 he was condemned to perpetual exile for the crime 
of treason. Teacher of languages during his exile. In 
1825 he published, in New York, his first volume of poems, 
which gave him universal fame. His Ode to Niagara is one 
of the most precious adornments of the Spanish Parnassus. 
His tragedies, both original and translated, are Sila, Cayo 
Grato, Tiberio, Atreo and Triestes, and Abufar, the latter 
being the most noted. He wrote the Lecciones de Historia 
Universal and many other works of note. Discharged im- 
portant public offices in Mexico. Died at Toluca, May 
7th, 1839, in his 35th year. 

No. 29. Cirilo Víllaverde. Born in San Diego de 
Nunez, October 28th, 1802. Educated at the College of 
San Carlos. Devoted himself to literature and education. 
Is not only the most notable, but may be regarded as the 
Cuban novelist, par excellence. Contributed to all the im- 
portant journals from 1830 to 1868. Among his many 


novels, that which especially justifies his- reputation is 
Cecilia Valdes, published in 1838. He wrote various 
didactic works, among others a text-book on the Geography 
of Cuba, and a school reader. Took part in a political 
conspiracy in 1848, Was condemned to a wretched death 
by the garrotte, March 31st, 1849, but escaped from prison 
and got away in the hold of a coasting schooner. Edited 
La Verdad in New York, 1853, and published El Inde- 
pendiente in New Orleans, 1854. Settled in Philadelphia, 
where he taught Spanish; married there Dona Emelia 
Casanova, a Cuban heroine whose name will ever be an 
honor to our history. Repaired to Cuba under the amnesty 
of 1858, but returned to New York and there edited La 
América, Frank Leslie's La Illustration Americana and EI 
Espejo. Figured among the revolutionists of 1868. He 
still resides in the United States, his contributions yet con- 
tinuing to distinguish our literature. 

No. 30. -José Jacinto Milanés. Born in Matanzas, 
August 16th, 1814, of indigent parents. Mastered the 
classic writers and the modern languages of Latin Europe, 
through self-culture. Began a business career as a clerk. 
Was first known through his lyrical compositions in the 
newspapers. He gained reputation by his drama El Conde 
Alareos, 1837, and was, after Heredia, the most popular 
poet of Cuba. Lost his reason while still young. Died 
November 14th, 1863. 

No, 31. Joaquín Lorenzo Luaces. Born in Havana, 
June 21st, 1826. Studied philosophy and law in the Uni- 


versity of Havana. Figured brilliantly among the repre- 
sentatives of Cuban literature from 1845 till 1867, the 
date of his death. He was not only a great lyric and epic 
poet and translator of the classics, but also a notable 
dramatist. His drama El mendigo rojo and his tragedy 
Aristodemus gained him a place in the foremost ranks of 
Spanish-American poets. 

No. 32. Antonio Guitéras. Born in Matanzas, June 
20th, 1819. Educated in the College of Carraguao, 
Havana. Graduated in law at the University of Seville, 
1843. Traveled through Europe, Asia and Africa. On his 
return devoted himself to education, and was President of 
the College of La Empresa, in Matanzas. Translated Virgil 
and distinguished himself as a writer. He was, after José 
de la Luz, the most noted Cuban educator. He eventually 
settled in Barcelona, where he has successfully devoted 
himself to literature. 

No. 33. Juan Clemente Zenea. Born in Bayamo, 
1831. Educated in Havana. At 17 years of age he 
actively engaged in a conspiracy with Narciso López. 
Traveled through the United States. In 1854 he devoted 
himself to teaching; was Professor at El Salvador, and 
Principal of the College of Humanidades. In 1867 he 
edited El Diario Oficial in Mexico. Took part in the 
revolution of 1868, identifying himself as Secretary in the 
unfortunate expedition of the "Lillian." Began his His- 
toria de la revolución and lectured on this subject in New 
York. In 1870 he went on a secret mission to confer with 
the Cuban insurgents. On his return was captured and 


taken to the fortress Cabana at Havana, where, after eight 
months of horrible suffering, he was shot. 

His original compositions, translations, adaptations and 
romances accord him the right to a high place in our Par- 
nassus. El Diario de un mártir, comprising the poems 
written in prison while awaiting the hour of death, from a 
collection of exquisite lyrics. 

No. 34. José Fornaris. Born in Bayamo, March 18th, 
1827. Educated in the Seminary of Cuba and in the Col- 
lege of San Fernando, Havana. Graduated in law in 1852. 
Went to Bayamo, where he was imprisoned and deported. 
Settled in Havana in 1855, and contributed from that time 
to 1868 to all the important periodicals. Was one of the 
most fruitful writers of his time. Published Ensayos Dra- 
máticos, various didactic and several eductional works. 
Made teaching his profession. Emigrated in 1871. Pub- 
lished four volumes of lyrical composition, his " Legends of 
the Aborigines" being especially popular. Died in Havana, 

35. Francisco J. Balm aseda. Born in Remedios, 
March 31st, 1833. In 1846 published a volume oí Rimas 
Cubanas; in 1861 a collection of moral tables. Has 
written comedies and novels, and contributed until 1868 to 
the most important periodicals of the country. Founded 
the Public Library at Remedios. In 1869 he was de- 
ported to Fernando Po, whence he escaped with Cas- 
tillo, Embill and others. In New York he published a 
history of that memorable and horrible consignment of 
more than 300 Cubans to a deadly land. A volume of 


his complete works has been published in Colombia. Was 
Minister Plenipotentiary from that republic to Madrid. 
Resides in Havana where he has published in three vol- 
umes his Tesoro del agricultor cubano. 

No. 36. Francisco Calcagno. Born in Güines, June 
1st, 1827. Educated in the College of Carrayuao. Studied 
philosophy and the classics in the University of Havana. 
Afterwards visited Europe and the United States. Trans- 
lated Rachel's repertoir into Spanish and English. Hav- 
ing lost the fortune left him by his parents he returned to 
Güines in 1860, where he established the first newspaper 
(El Album), the first printing press, the first public 
library, and the first school of languages in that district. 
Was principal of an elementary school. Settled in Havana 
in 1865. Among his many works we may mention the 
following : Poesías; Mesa revuelta, a collection of criticism 
and translations; Historia de un muerto and En busca del 
eslabón, scientific fictions; Mama Concha and Uno de tantos, 
political novels. But his most valuable work, which 
reveals the indefatiguable labor of this Cuban writer, is 
his Diccionario biográfico cubano, the first work of the kind 
in the country. 

No. 37. Eusebio Guitéras. 1 Was born on the 5th 
of March, 1823, in Matanzas, Cuba, of Spanish parents, 
and was consequently a Creole, in the proper sense of the 

1 This biographical sketch is reprinted from a memoir by Miss 
Laura Guitéras, published in the "Eecords" of the American Catholic 
Historical Society, 1894. — Editor. 



word. 1 The youngest of a family of six, he had the great 
misfortune to lose his father in 1829, when but six years 
old, and his mother and oldest brother followed in the ter- 
rible cholera epidemic of 
1833, thus leaving him 
an orphan at ten years of 
age. He always cher- 
ished the memory of his 
parents, and never ceased 
to lament their loss ; and 
I have heard him re- 
mark that had they lived 
to guide him, he might 
have served his country 
and his fellow- men. This 
was the highest ambi- 
tion of his life — to better 
the lamentable condition 
of his unhappy land and 
her people. How well he 

has accomplished it thousands of grateful Cuban hearts 
can testify. 

He was educated in Havana, at the College of San Cris- 
tóbal (better known under the name of Carraguao), where 
he soon won the love and esteem of his companions and 
teachers, particularly of San José de la Luz, leading spirit 
of the College and one of the most illustrious men of Cuba. 


1 The word Creole means a person born in America of foreign par- 
ents. Popularly, but erroneously, it is used to convey the idea of a 
mixture with African blood. 


Here he devoted himself chiefly to the classics and liter- 
ature ; the latter remaining ever afterwards his favorite 
study. At fifteen he commenced to write verses, and 
shortly after to contribute both poetry and prose to the 
Cuban press. 

Even while at school he and his talented brother Anto- 
nio had conceived the idea of establishing an institute of 
learning, of which it stood in such sad need, in their native 
city of Matanzas. It was with this end in view, and in 
order to perfect themselves in the modern languages, that 
they left Cuba in 1842, traveling extensively through 
France, Italy, Spain, Greece, Turkey, and their posses- 
sions in Egypt and Syria; they made the pilgrimage to 
Jerusalem and visited the pyramids, being the first Cubans 
to undertake this, at this time, perilous journey. They 
had always the interests of their loved country at heart, 
giving special attention to the various systems of education 
in the principal cities of the continent. 

In Paris they took the course of literature at the Sor- 
bonne, where they had the privilege of studying Dante 
under the great Ozanam, whom Leigh Hunt quotes as an 
authority on the subject. They also listened frequently to 
Lacordaire and Michelet. Among the distinguished per- 
sons they met on their travels were His Holiness, Pope 
Gregory XVI, the famous polyglot, Cardinal Mazzofanti, 
the Spanish statesman Olozaga — ex- President of the Cortes 
— and Salva, of dictionary repute. 

During their stay in Constantinople, the Spanish Ambas- 
sador put his caique with their servants at their command, 
thus giving them opportunity of visiting many persons and 


places which would otherwise have been difficult of access. 
The history of these travels is written in a most delightful 
style, and full of interesting anecdotes and circumstances. 
The description of the Cathedral of Seville is particularly 
noteworthy, the author having had ample time for observa- 
tion and study, during the three weeks he was obliged to 
take refuge within its sacred walls while the city was in a 
state of siege. 

Returning to Cuba in 1845, my uncle married, in July 
of the same year, Miss Josefa Gener, to whom he had been 
deeply attached from boyhood. 

In 1848, the delicate health of his wife necessitated his 
again leaving Cuba for the United States. While on this 
trip he had the pleasure of visiting Longfellow several times 
at his home in Cambridge, and awakening in him a desire 
to learn something of Cuban literature; the outcome of 
which was an article on the subject published in the Janu- 
ary number of the North American Review, in 1849. 

He also corresponded with many men of note, among 
whom were William Cullen Bryant, Washington Irving, 
Ticknor, Bancroft and John Greenleaf Whittier. 

On his return the following year, he was imprisoned in 
the Mono Castle of Havana, on the charge of spreading 
liberal ideas among the inhabitants. The event occurred 
during the heat of the Summer, while an epidemic of cholera 
was raging in the city, of which the prison, with its squalid 
surroundings, was the very hot-bed. But not on this ac- 
count did any word of murmur cross his lips; nor did his 
patience and cheerfulness flag at the delays and innumer- 
able steps necessary to take, in order to set an innocent 


man free. This work of love was finally accomplished at 
the end of six months through the untiring efforts of his 
friends, and principally of his brother Antonio; not, how- 
ever, before the cruel blow of the sudden death of his 
daughter was dealt him; which sorrow was the harder to 
bear, because at that time he had not the grace of resigna- 
tion to the holy Will of God, which in after life sustained 
him through so many years of suffering. During the weary 
mouths of his confinement he read every da}^ the speech of 
the Vicar of Wakefield to his fellow prisoners. This book, 
as also I Promesi Sposi, and Don Quijote, were a source of 
infinite enjoyment to him. The latter he was in the habit 
of reading at least every year. On my once asking him if 
he never tired of Cervantes, he answered smiling,-- "do the 
English ever tire of Shakespeare ? Well, you know this is 
our Shakespeare." 

Immediately on his release from prison, he set about 
founding the college which he and his brother were to make 
famous under the name of "La Empresa," and which will 
be the wonder and admiration of generations of Cubans to 
come; for this was no easy task to undertake, much less to 
accomplish, in a country where political disturbances were 
of frequent occurrence, and where a wretched local Govern- 
ment made the progress of civilization slow and difficult. 

Unfortunately he had been at the head of this Institute 
but a very short time, when apprehension for the life of his 
only surviving child, John, forced him to leave Cuba in 
1854, for a third time, his brother remaining at the head of 
La Empresa. He established himself in Philadelphia, in 
which city he now wrote the series of Spanish readers which 


has made his name familiar in nearly all Spanish speaking 
countries. These books have received the highest com- 
mendation and praise of reputed scholars, not only for 
the style in which they are written, but also for the in- 
genious way in which he has combined pleasure and instruc- 
tion for the pupil. Among others he had the gratification 
of receiving a flattering letter from Arjona, a famous 
Spanish elocutionist, and tutor of the late King Alfonso 
XII, — in which he expressed his satisfaction at seeing a 
long needed want filled in such an admirable manner. 

The books have been the coveted property of several 
Cuban publishing houses, which have reaped enormous 
fortunes from them. Many editions have been issued by 
Appleton & Co. of New York; the largest in 1886, counting 
upwards of 18,000 volumes. This is an unprecedented 
success in the Island of Cuba ! 

í¡< ^ %. %. ^ ^ íjí >¡< >'(C 

There was no educational, literary or scientific movement 
in Matanzas that did not look to him for support. He was 
one of the founders and for some time president of the Liceo, 
literary centre, of Matanzas. In 1861, on the occasion of 
the "Juegos Florales" (literary contest), he received the 
gold medal for his poem entitled "Romance Cubano" from 
the hands of the distinguished Cuban poetess Gertrudis 
Gomez de Avelleneda, whom he had previously met in 

Don José de la Luz repeatedly requested him in the most 
flattering terms to assume the directorship of El Salvador, 
at that time the most reputed school of Havana. The in- 
herent qualities of his nature, however, prompted him to 


decline these tempting offers, not permitting him as a 
brother, to preside over a rival college in a rival city. 

He devoted himself therefore to the duties of teacher in 
La Empresa. But in 1868 the ill-fated revolution broke 
out, and put an end to what he has termed the happiest 
period of his life. La Empresa, the college where upwards 
of five thousand Cuban boys received a liberal education, 
and where lessons of truth and morals were inculcated ; La 
Empresa, which prepared so many of them for the high 
places in the learned professions which they occupy to-day, 
was denounced by the cultured Colonial Government as a 
nucleus of revolutionists. Even the series of Spanish readers 
was prohibited for a time from being circulated. 

Any one who had the happiness of knowing my uncle, 
must be aware how opposed to his views was anything like 
revolt against the existing authorities, whatever they might 
be. Ignorance, he thought, was at the root of all evil. 
Shortly before his death, on speaking of the interests of 
Cuba, which were ever nearest his heart, he exclaimed: 
"Educate! Educate! Cuba will not prosper until she has 
built many schools ! " 

He has published in late years a text-book for the study 
of French ; " Irene Albar," a novel illustrating Cuban life; 
the description of a Winter in New York, entitled " Un 
Invierno en Nueva York," and numerous essays and poems. 
At the request of Archbishop Wood he corrected a reprint 
of an old Spanish version of the Bible ; rectifying with in- 
finite pains the many errors in the voluminous notes of the 
original, particularly in regard to references. Unpublished, 
he leaves a novel entitled "Gabriel Reves," a translation 


of the " Iimi Sacri" of Manzoni; a complete account of his 
travels; a volume of religious poems; another of Remi- 
niscences ; Essays on education, and a reader for the study 
of the English language. 

He was a member of the Historical Society of Pennsyl- 
vania and of the American Catholic Historical Society. 

After having left Cuba for the last time, in 1869, he 
again fixed his residence in Philadelphia, where (with the 
exception of four years spent in Charleston, S. C.) he re- 
mained until the date of his death, December 24th, 1893. 

Laura Guitéras. 

No. 38. Nicolás Gutiérrez. Bom in Havana, Sept. 
10th, 1800. Doctor of Medicine in our university, 1821. 
Professor of Anatomy and of Pathology in the same insti- 
tution, and author of notable treatises on chemistry and 
therapeutics. Elected corresponding member of the Cadiz 
Medical Academy, 1835, and of the Phrenological Society 
of Paris, 1837. Was sent on a commission to Paris; on 
his return opened a course of lectures on Clinical Surgery 
and another on Obstetrics, the first in Havana, 1840. 
Founded the periodical Repertoria Medico, the first of its 
kind in the country. Founder and President for life of the 
Academy of Sciences of New Orleans. Has filled import- 
ant posts in connection with public instruction, and pub- 
lished numerous scientific works. The reputation of this 
learned Cuban, ex-Provost of our University, was recog- 
nized in his election as Vice-President of the first Pan- 
American Medical Congress in Washington. Died in 
Havana, December 31st, 1890. 


No. 39. Pedro Guitéras. Born in Matanzas, March 
17th, 1814. His work on the education of women was 
awarded the prize in the literary contest of 1848. Founded 
an institute with this object. Established himself in Wash- 
ington, and published in 1856 a history of the conquest of 
Havana, and later a general history of Cuba, reputed as 
the best of its kind. Died in Charleston, S. C, 1890. 

No. 40. Néstor Ponce de Léon. Born in Havana, 
1838. Graduated in law, 1858. Founded with Valdés 
Aguirre the newspaper Brisas de Cuba, and in 1868 La 
Revista crítica de ciencas, literatura y artes. Translated 
Heine. Manager of the Revolutionary organ La Verdad, 
1869. He was exiled and his property confiscated the 
same year. Published in New York El Libro de sangre 
(The Bloody Book). Resides in New York, where he is 
now publishing his monumental work, A Technical English- 
Spanish Dictionary. 

No. 41. Aniceto Menocal. Born in Matanzas. 
Studied Civil Engineering in Troy, N. Y. Entered the 
United States Navy as Engineer. Consulting Engineer of 
the U. S. Navy Department. Chief Engineer of the Navy 
Yard at Washington, where he also superintended the 
erection of the Washington Monument. Worked success- 
fully on the Panama Canal. Author of the plan for the 
Nicaragua Interoceanic Canal, which gained for him the 
cross of the Legion of Honor of the French Republic, and 
is at present Chief Engineer of that undertaking, 


No. 42. Francisco Albear y Lara. Born in Havana, 
January 11th, 1816. Educated in the College of Buena 
Vista. Graduated as Civil Engineer at Madrid in 1835. 
Fought against the Carlista as lieutenant in 1839. Planned 
the defences of Segura and fortified the hights of San Mateo. 
Captain in 1842; in the same year professor of mathematics 
in Guadalajara. Promoted to Commandant in 1843 in 
recognition of his mastery of fortification and coast defence. 
Author of several works on Military Engineering. Sub- 
inspector of military engineers in Cuba, 1844. Was sent 
as commissioner to Europe to study improvements in this 
branch, and published important works on the subject; his 
reports and memoirs are innumerable. Corresponding 
member of many national and foreign societies. But his 
most important work, and that on which his fame will re- 
main permanently based, is the plan and the construction of 
the Vento Aquaduct, which was awarded a prize at the 
Paris Exposition, and which to-day bears his name. He 
died in Havana, 1889. 

No. 43. Alvaro Reynoso. Born in Duran (Havana). 
Studied under the illustrious Casaseca in Carraguao. In 
1854 he obtained the prize at the Academy of Sciences. 
Laureate of the Imperial Institute of France. Fellow in 
science of the faculty of Paris, where he achieved reputation 
through various works, especially on the extraction of 
iodine. Editor of the Records of the Sociedad Económica 
in the Diarlo de la Marina, and of other publications. 
Invented and constructed an apparatus for manufacturing 
sugar. Among his more important works are Estudio sobre 


materia científica (1861); Ensayo sobre el cultivo de la caña 
(1862); Notas sobre el cultivo en camellones, París, 1881; a 
paper on the presence of sugar in urine, written in French, 
and various others. Member of numerous scientific societies, 
both Spanish and foreign. Died in Havana, 1889. 

No. 44. Felipe Poey. Born in Havana, May 26th, 
1799. Devoted himself from childhood to the study of the 
natural sciences, especially ichthyology. In 1826 he took 
with him to France a collection of drawings of fishes which 
he placed at the disposal of Cuvier and Valenciennes, who 
quote him as an authority. Was accorded in France the 
degree of Doctor of Laws. He cultivated literature with 
success, and was an eminent linguist and philologist. Fig- 
ured in Paris in the Entomological Society of France. In 
1832 he published there two numbers of his Centuria de 
lepidópteros de Cuba. Was elected corresponding member 
of the Zoological Society of London in recognition of his 
work on the fauna and flora of Cuba. In 1836, pub- 
lished a Geografía de Cuba, a Tratado de mineralogía and 
a Geografía Universal. Founded and directed a museum 
1839. In 1860 he published his Memoria sobre historia 
natural de Cuba, in two volumes, and in 1865 Catálogo 
razonado de los peces cubanos. Colaborated in all the 
literary and scientific periodicals up to 1868. Member of 
many Spanish and foreign scientific societies. He kept up 
a scientific correspondence with the most famous naturalists 
of Europe and America. His writings on varied subjects 
are exceedingly voluminous. His work on Ictiología 
Cubana (bought by the Spanish Government for the miserly 


sum of $3000, and which remains unpublished because of 
the cost of bringing it out) is the result of forty years of 
study and investigation. If this learned Cuban had con- 
ceded it to a foreign government or to a private individual, 
his work would now be published. He died in Havana, 
January 28th, 1891. 

No. 45. Nicolás Ruiz Espadero. Born in Havana, 
1833. Distinguished pianist and composer. Associate 
of Gottschalk and Strakosch. Highly praised in the French 
and Spanisli musical reviews. His biography figures with 
that of Villate in the Dlciiojinaire de biographie universelle 
des musicians as a distinguished composer. Died in 1890. 

No. 46. José White. A notable violinist, called the 
Cuban Paganini. Born in Matanzas, January 17th, 1836. 
His mother was a colored woman. At sixteen years of 
age he wrote a mass for the Matanzas orchestra and gave 
his first concert. In 1856 entered the conservatory of 
Paris, and in the following year obtained the first prize 
as violinist among thirty-nine contestants. Afterwards 
substituted Professor Allard in that institute. Soon gained 
a wide reputation among the great European violinists. 
Rossini wrote him a letter saying that the French school 
might well be proud of him. In January, 1875, full of 
honors, he landed in Havana, and on June 8th of the 
same year he was driven out by the Government. Like 
all eminent Cubans, he added that leaf to his crown of 
laurels. He is now President of the Conservatory of 
Brazil, in Rio Janeiro, where he resides. 


No. 47. Rafael Diaz Albertini. Born Havana, 
August 13th, 1857. From childhood he showed great 
talent for the violin; his teachers were Anselmo Lopez 
and José Vanderguntch. Went to Europe and was first 
known in Cadiz; from there he proceeded to Paris, where he 
played at the Spanish Legation before the Diplomatic Corps. 
Emigrated to London during the Franco-German war. 
Studied with the German professor Riez. Entered the Paris 
Conservatory in 1871 and obtained the first prize in 1875. 
In 1878 he played in Madrid at the popular concerts of 
Monasterio and was presented with a laurel wreath. Re- 
turned to Havana in 1879 and was warmly received by 
his countrymen. Since 1881 he resides in Paris, making 
concerts tours with Saint Saens through the principal 
cities of Europe. From 1883 to 1887 he was one of the 
examination judges at the Paris Conservatory, an honor 
usually reserved for artists of advanced years. 

No. 48. José M. Gálvez. Born in Matanzas, Novem- 
ber 24th, 1835. Educated in the College of "La Em- 
presa" and "El Salvador." Lawyer of great erudition 
and a famous forensic orator. Journalist; has published 
anonymously many political articles, and is especially ex- 
cellent in his satires. During the revolutionary period 
he was confined in the Isle of Pines. Before and after 
his imprisonment, and up to 1878, he remained in Havana, 
exercising his profession and co-operating with the Rev- 
olutionary Junta of New York. In recognition of his pa- 
triotism and talents he was elected by acclamation as 
President of the Organizing Committee of the Autonomist 


party, and in this important office he has displayed the 
greatest energy and intelligence. Counsellor, and Presi- 
dent during three biennial terms, of the Sociedad de Amigos 
del Pais. He is, furthermore, a noted political orator. 
Resides in Havana and enjoys great popularity. 

No. 49. Statue and Fountain of the Indies. A 
monument erected through the efforts of the Count of Vil- 
lanueva. It is situated in the centre of a square, at the 
southern extremity of the street of the Prado, in Havana. 

No. 50. Ramon Pinto. Born in Cataluña, 1802. Be- 
gan an ecclesiastical career, but abandoned it during the 
political revolts of 1820. His liberal ideas drove him 
from Spain in 1824 and he went to Cuba as tutor to the 
children of Baron de Kesel. Went into business as gen- 
eral agent. President of the Lyceum of Havana (1853). 
Colaborated in the Diario de la Marina. Organized the 
corporation which owns that journal. Exercised great in- 
influence; took part in the Separatist conspiracy in 1855, 
was arrested and put to death in Havana with that infa- 
mous contrivance, the garotte, May 31st of the above year. 

No. 51. Carlos Manuel de Céspedes. Born, April 
18th, 1819, in Bayamo. Studied at the University of 
Havana. Graduated in law at Madrid in 1840. Conspired 
with his friend Prim and was exiled to France. Returned 
to Bayamo in 1844, after having traveled through Eu- 
rope. Cultivated literature. Was imprisoned during the 
conspiracy of Narciso López and confined in Palma Sori- 
ano. Afterwards practised his profession in Bayamo. On 


the 10th of October, 1868, at the head of 140 poorly 
armed followers and his 200 slaves, whom he had liberated, 
he started the cry for independence on his plantation of 
Demajagua (Yara), and on the following day he published 
a manifesto. 

Two days later he was joined by 4,000 men, and the 
entire country gave its sympathy or active aid to the 
movement, which lasted throughout ten years and extended 
from the extreme east of the Island to the vicinity of 
Havana. He presided at the Congress of Guáimaro and 
was elected President of the Cuban Republic, as established 
by the insurrectionists. But party discords and rivalries, 
inherent vices of our race, caused the downfall of this 
unconquered chieftain. He died homeless, starving and 
abandoned, wounded by an enemy's bullet, March 22d, 
1874. His unfading crown of glory is not lacking the 
withered leaf of man's ingratitude. 

No. 52. Julián Gassie. Born in Havana, 1850. 
Lawyer, 1872. Founder of the Anthropological Society 
of Havana and author of its constitution. Was an eru- 
dite philologist. Published a remarkable work on Lin- 
güística moderna. Was the real initiator and founder of 
the Liberal Cuban Party after the peace of Zanjón, and 
first Secretary of its Executive Committee. Untimely 
death (December, 1878) shattered the hopes which his 
country had justly founded on him. 

No. 53. Carlos Saladrigas. Born in Matanzas. A 
distinguished lawyer and brilliant political speaker. Vice- 
President of the Executive Committee of the Autonomist 


party, of which he was one of the organizers. Ex-Presi- 
dent of the Provincial Deputation of Havana, in which city 
he resides. 

No. 54. Manuel Sanguili. Born in Havana, March 
26th, 1849. Pupil and afterward professor in "El Salva- 
dor," 1868. In January, 1869, sailed from Nassau, bound 
for Cuba, in the schooner "Garvani," which was captured, 
but he escaped in a boat with nine other members of the 
expedition. The same year he entered the revolutionary 
ranks as private. Lieutenant- Commander of the Cama- 
güey Cavalry and of the Southern Brigade, 1870. Was 
twice representative m the Congress of Guáimaro (1869 and 
1874). Wounded in the attack at Torre de Colon, under 
Agramonte (1871). Chief of Staff during the invasion of 
Las Villas by General Maximo Gomez (1874). Proceeded 
to New York on a commission with his brother, General 
Julio Sanguili, to organize a new expedition. After the 
Peace of Zanjón (September, 1878) he went to Europe 
and graduated in law at Madrid. Returned to Cuba in 
in 1879. Distinguished as an orator, publicist, historian, 
and as an authority on American archaeology. Among 
his literary works are Los Caribes de la Isla, Cristóbal 
Colón y los caribes, Los oradores de Cuba, numerous criti- 
cal and political dissertations and scientific essays, and a 
specially notable work on José de la Luz y Caballero. Is 
resident in Havana. 

No. 55. Marta Abreu de Estévez. Born in Santa 
Clara. Daughter of industrious parents, and reared in 


simple and rigid manners. Married to a learned professor 
of jurisprudence, Dr. Luis Esté vez, this wealthy heiress 
has maintained the traditions and honored the name of her 
family by her virtues, modesty and great philanthropy. 
Donated a fine theatre to her native city, applying its 
income to the support of public schools. Also constructed 
public baths for the benefit of the poor of that city. To- 
gether with her two sisters, Doña Rosalía Abren de Sán- 
chez and Doña Rosa Abren de Grancher, she supports in 
the same community an asylum for the poor, a school for 
colored children, and a school for boys and another for girls 
of the white race, which latter were endowed by the be- 
quest of her parents. To the support of the asylum and 
the three schools they have devoted the sum of $100,000 
and to the theatre and baths $150,000. Señora Abreu de 
Estévez devotes special attention to these schools, attending 
the examinations and giving unusually large amounts in 
prizes to both pupils and teachers. 

There is no work of public interest to which this distin- 
guished woman does not contribute munificently. Her 
generosity, simplicity and earnestness render her a true 
model of Cuban womanhood. 

No. 5ti. Teatro de La Caridad (The Charity Thea- 
tre), Santa Clara. The illustration represents the building- 
erected in the city of Santa Clara by Marta Abreu de 
Estévez. The structure was designed by the well-known 
Cuban architect and publicist, Herminio Leiva. 

No. 57. Francisco Vicente Aguilera. Born in 
Bayamo. Highly educated in Cuba, and afterwards in 


America and Europe. A millionaire. At the outbreak of 
the Cuban revolution of 1868 he was one of its most de- 
cided partisans and promoters. Liberated his slaves. 
Minister of war in 1869; Vice-President of the Cuban Re- 
public; succeeded Céspedes in the Presidency. Proceeded 
to New York on a diplomatic commission and died there in 
1877. The municipality of New York took part in his 
obsequies, and his body lay in state in the City Hall. 

No. 58. Salvador Zapata. Born at Santa Maria de 
Guiramo, in Galicia, Spain. Was brought to Cuba while 
very young; studied pharmacy. Graduated in 1813. 
Made a fortune in the country, and died April 21st, 1854, 
bequeathing a large fund for the support of schools, with 
the income of which the Amigos del Pais are enabled to 
maintain six schools known by his name. Two of them are 
for children, two for adults (white and colored), one for 
girls and the sixth is a normal school. He was one of the 
few Spaniards who manifested their love and gratitude to 
country where they acquired their wealth. 

No. 59. José Alonso y Delgado. Born in Laguna 
(Canary Islands), in 1812. Came at an early age to 
Cuba; founded the Lancaster Schools in Regla in 1830. 
He there established his famous College of San Francisco de 
Asís y Real Cubano, which together with El Salvador of 
Luz Caballero took the lead of all institutes of the kind in 
Havana for its methods, effective material equipments, its 
admirable buildings, which were specially erected for that 
purpose, and above all for the excellence of its corps of 
teachers. He afforded over fifty pupils gratuitous instruc- 


tion. He encountered many difficulties during the Revolu- 
tion and was finally brought to the necessity of closing the 
college. He died in 1890. 

No. 60. Juan Bruno Zayas. Born October 15th, 1825, 
in Cimarrones, Matanzas. Studied medicine at the Uni- 
versity of Havana. By dint of his industry and talents he 
accumulated a fortune, and instituted, exclusively with his 
own means, a free college, wherein he gave his personal 
service in teaching until November 27th, 1871, when the 
Government ordered it to be closed. Member of the Ex- 
ecutive Committee of the Autonomist party. Provincial 
Deputy. Founded an annual prize in the Academy of 
Sciences. Enjoyed an immense popularity for the free 
medical assistance which he dispensed to the poor, for the 
gentleness of his character and his great philanthropy. 
Died in 1886. 

No. 61. José Eugenio Moré. Born in Santa Marta, 
U. S. of Columbia, in 1810; son of a Spanish army officer. 
Emigrated to Cuba at an early age in poverty. Here he 
made a large fortune, and realized the idea conceived by 
the Count of Pozos Dulces and cherished by the Círculo de 
Hacendados de la Habana, the establishment of a school de- 
voted to the theory and practice of Agriculture. He in- 
vested over $200,000 in this philanthropic enterprise. 
Honorary member of the Sociedad Económica. Died in 1890. 

No. 62. Juan J. D. Espada y Landa. Bishop of 
Havana. Born in Arrayave, Alava, April 20th, 1756. 
Studied in Salamanca. Appointed Bishop of Havana, 


January, 1800. The establishment of the Cemetery of 
Havana, which bore his name, is due to him; it is now 
closed. He abolished the practice of interment in the 
churches. During his thirty years of incumbency, he took 
an active part in all projects and undertakings tending to 
the improvement of the country. The regeneration of the 
parochial clergy and of the monks, the dissemination of 
vaccine, which had been introduced into the country by Dr. 
Romay, the funds contributed by him to the support of new 
public schools (his conduct in this regard contrasting strongly 
with that of his predecessor, Tres Palacios, who opposed 
their increase), his large charities to the Beneficencia and 
to the Insane Asylum afford evidence of his breadth of 
character. The draining of the marshes of the Campo de 
Marte, the reformation of the plan of studies in the Uni- 
versity, the institution of new professorships, the introduc- 
tion of scientific apparatus, the impulse given to the labors 
of the Sociedad Económica over which he presided; the 
erection of the Templete, the establishment of the College 
San Francisco de Sales were among the results effected by 
this noble man, a model for prelates and for rulers, whose 
name will remain forever venerated in the hearts of the 
Cuban people. 

No. 63. Hospital de Nuestra Señora de las Mer- 
cedes. (Our Lady of Mercies.) Occupies an area of 
12,500 square metres, on stony ground twenty-one metres 
above the level of the sea, isolated and removed from the 
turmoil of the city, with which it is connected by a wretched 
roadway, which the Havana Municipality has not learned 


to improve. It has provision for more than three hundred 
patients. The corner-stone was laid in November, 1880, 
and the institution was opened in an unfinished state Feb- 
ruary 8th, 1886. 

Towards its erection was applied a legacy of $37,000, be- 
queathed by Joaquín Gómez; another of $160,000, left by 
Doña Josefa Santa Cruz de Oviedo, and another of $20,000, 
bequeathed by Salvador Sama; these sums were, however, 
seriously diminished by municipal mismanagement, and 
reduced to a total of $186,035. Numberless difficulties 
had to be overcome in the accomplishment of this work — 
all of them of an official character — brought about by the 
opposition of the military authorities, and the delay of the 
Treasury in handing over the deposit of the legacy of Sra. 
de Oriedo and of others. Out of these legacies the institu- 
tion was forced to pay for the removal of the old and 
delapidated Hospital of San Juan de Dios, the materials of 
which were, indeed, sold at auction for the benefit of the 
new work, but the proceeds were lost in the inscrutable and 
mysterious abyss of the Colonial offices. The life of this 
institution is its Manager, Dr. Emiliano Nilñes, who, by 
constant recourse to public charity, through bazaars, col- 
lections and all kinds of entertainments, and with the efficient 
co-operation of various charitable organizations, has suc- 
ceeded in keeping it afloat. 

No. 64. The Reverend Father Félix Várela. 
Born in Havana, November 20th, 1788. Spent his child- 
hood in Florida, and was ordained in 1811 at the Seminary 
of San C'arlos, Havana, where he succeeded his former 


teachers, O' Gavan and Caballero, in the Chairs of Philosophy 
and Theology. He introduced into Cuba the true study of 
philosophy and founded in the Seminary the first laboratory 
for experimental physics. From 1812 to 1814 he pub- 
lished in Latin, essays and treatises on logic, metaphysics 
and ethics, which he afterwards translated into Spanish. 
In 1817 he published his Apuntes filosóficos and also Mis- 
celánea filosófica ; in 1820, Lecciones de Filosofía, an 
elementary text-book on Physics and Chemistry, and an- 
other on Anatomy and Physiology. His panegyric on 
Charles IV, his eulogy of Ferdinand VII for his protection of 
Spanish-America, and other like orations, prove his mastery 
as an orator. He established in the Seminary a Chair of 
Political Economy, the first in the Spanish dominions, and 
obtained the professorship of Constitutional Law against the 
competition of Escobedo, Saco and the Rev. Father Eche- 
varría. In 1821 he was elected a deputy to the Cortes. 
In Madrid he republished some of his works and colaborated 
in various journals ; in the Cortes he moved for a perma- 
nent representation for the provinces of Cuba in the interest 
of the Island. Voted for the overthrow of Ferdinand VII, 
and was condemned to death at the restoration; escaped and 
emigrated to the United States. Founded in Philadelphia 
the newspaper El Habanero (1824). Reprinted some of 
his works and published new ones, among them (1825) 
Ocios de los españoles emigrados (Idle days of Spanish 
Emigrants), which was forbidden circulation in Cuba. 
Entered the priesthood in New York. Colaborated in the 
Revista Bimestre; published a little work in English in de- 
fense of the Church; kept up diverse religious polemics, 


and in 1835 began his famous Carta* á Elpidio. Founded 
a church in 1834. Was elected in 1845 Vicar-General of 
New York, in which city he was venerated for his earnest 
piety and infinite charity. In 1849 he removed to St. 
Augustine (Florida) in quest of health, and died there 
February 18th, 1853. 

No. 65. Estatua de Colon. (Statue of Columbus). 
Monument erected in the Plaza de Armas of Cárdenas by 
the Municipality of that city. 

No. 66. Guillermo Bernal. Born November 24th, 
1847. Educated in the College of Belén. Graduated in 
civil law at the University of Havana; began the practice 
of his profession in 1878; has filled important judicial 
offices in Cuba ; City Attorney of Havana, and Special 
Commissioner ; is at present Judge of the Court of first 
instance for the Western District, with the rank of Justice 
of the Court of Oyer and Terminer and Supervisor of the 
Registry of Deeds. He published in 1880 a work on 
Criminal Law. 

He is one of the Cubans whose efficient exercise of 
magisterial functions has demonstrated that the natives of 
the country possess ample abilities for the discharge of such 
important offices. 

No. 67. Antonio Govin y Torres. Born in 
Matanzas, September 22d, 1849. Educated in Havana 
while maintaining himself and defraying the cost of his 
education by teaching in prominent colleges. Graduated 
in law 1872. One of the founders of the Autonomist party 


in 1878. Elected Secretary of the Executive Committee 
in 1879, which office he still holds. Grand Master of the 
United Masonic Order of Colon and of the Island of Cuba. 
First editor of the political newspaper tl El Triunfo," now 
known as "El Pais." Managing Director of the Revista 
General de Derecho y Administration. Colaborated in 
other literary and scientific journals. Has published a 
Treatise on Administrative Law, in three volumes, a vol- 
ume of Commentaries on the law of Civil Procedure, 
various pamphlets and collections of political reviews, and 
treatises on subjects of jurisprudence, some of which have 
been awarded prizes by the Law Association of Havana. 

Orator, jurisconsult, publicist, a man of affairs, public 
spirited and energetic, this young man figures among those 
admirable characters whom John Stuart Mill had in mind 
in his famous work, Self-help; he is unquestionably one of 
the most admirable representative of Cuban manhood. 
Prominent among his other services to his people is the 
famous editorial utterance entitled Nuestra Doctrina (Our 
Doctrine), which, at a critical and perilous juncture, de- 
fined the platform of the Autonomist party (1881), and 
allayed a situation of grave anxiety. 

No. 68. Palace of the Municipality and Cap- 
taincy General. Erected by the Municipality of 
Havana and occupied by its offices in part. The Captain- 
General, the Governor and the officials of the general 
government occupy the other and principal portion of the 
building, although the State makes no recompense to the 

Municipality for this tenancy. 


No. 69. Nicolás Escobébo. Born in Havana, Sep- 
tember 10th, 1795. Educated in the Seminary and pupil of 
Várela, whose place he took in the Chair of International 
Law. Professor of Philosophy and Lecturer on Aristotle in 
our University. Founder of El Observador periodical. 
Lawyer and notable forensic orator. Went to Spain in 
1825, became assistant to the Bishop of Michoacán in the 
Ministry of Justice and Pardons, and while at that post he 
lost his eyesight. Laboring under this affliction he con- 
tinued the practice of his profession in Havana and for 
fourteen years was the leading spirit of the Cuban bar. In 
1836 he was elected Deputy to the Cortes, and served until 
the Cuban representatives were expelled. Leaving Madrid 
he settled in Paris, where he died May 11th, 1840, be- 
queathing to his country $6,000 for the education of poor 

No. 70. Rafael M. de Labka. Born in Havana, 
1841. He was educated in Madrid and became known 
at an early age as a lawyer, orator and writer, devoting 
himself to Antillan interests in general and especially 
to the cause of the abolition of slavery in the Spanish 
Antilles; with that historic movement the name of this 
great Cuban will always remain associated. He is an 
indefatigable agitator, an orator and parliamentarian of 
European reputation. An eminent publicist; an enumera- 
tion of his writings on judicial, historical, political and 
literary subjects would be very lengthy. Notwithstanding 
that these publications number over thirty, his literary 
activity has not prevented his giving personal supervision to 


the extensive business of bis law-office, nor restrained him 
from taking an assiduous part in the work of the scientific 
and commercial associations of which be is an officer or 
member, and still less withheld him from his onerous duties 
as a Colonial representative. 

In 1870 he delivered in the Athenaeum at Madrid a 
course of lectures on the Political Affairs of the Colonies. 
He was accorded, in the Central University, a professor- 
ship of Colonization which was afterwards suppressed; and 
in the Normal Institute he holds the chairs of International 
Law and of Contemporary Political History. From 1871 
he has figured in the Cortes as Deputy for Infiesto, Porto 
Rico, or Havana, or as Senator from the Sociedad Eco- 
nómica of Cuba. 

This man of extraordinary capacity has been successful in 
every field of action, and presents one of the most remark- 
able contemporary examples of great energy, industry and 

No. 71. El Templete. Monument erected in 1828 in 
the Plaza de Armas to commemorate the site where the 
first mass was said in Havana. 

No. 72. Tomás Gener. Born in Barcelona, 1787. 
Came to Cuba in early youth and settled in Matanzas, where 
his talents and industry enabled him to gain a considerable 
fortune; afforded eminent services to the municipality of 
that city and likewise to Governor Terry in his patriotic 
enterprises. Promoted public instruction. Was elected 
Deputy to the Cortes in 1820, and voted for the deposition 


of Ferdinand VII. At the beginning of the reaction he 
escaped with Várela and emigrated to the United States. 
Under the amnesty of 1834 he returned to Cuba and died 
in Matanzas, August 15th, 1835. This noble Catalonian, a 
liberal and abolitionist, was a good friend to the country. 
His son, Benigno Gener, followed in his footsteps, and in 
Cadiz, whither he emigrated during the revolution of 1868, 
he acted as a generous protector of his exiled countrymen. 

No. 73. Francisco de Armas. Born in Puerto 
Principe in 1804. Educated in the Seminary. Graduated 
in law with distinction in 1822. Publicist and honorary 
magistrate. Elected Procurator to the Cortes by his native 
city in 1836, but did not occupy his seat, the Cuban repre- 
sentatives being refused admission. In 1842 he founded in 
Madrid the newspaper El Observador de Ultramar and 
wrote for other publications in defense of the interests of his 
country. Died in August, 1844. 

No. 74. Narciso López. Born in Venezuela, 1798. 
Entered the Spanish army when very young and fought 
against the Spanish-American rebels. Distinguished him- 
self in the Peninsula during the War of the Succession. 
For his valor and gallantry he was made General in 1840. 
Occupied various official posts in Spain. Came to Cuba in 
1841 with General Valdes and discharged important func- 
tions. Under O'Donnell's rule he was recalled. De- 
voted himself to business pursuits, and married a native 
of Cuba. Took part in seditious undertakings, and in 
1849 emigrated to the United States, where he identified 


himself with the Cuban conspirators in New York. In the 
same year he undertook his first expedition to the Island, 
landing at Cárdenas, May 19th, 1850, at the head of 610 
men. Took possession of the city, but the people did not 
respond as he expected, so that he was obliged to retire. 
His second expedition, composed of 600 men, sailed from 
New Orleans August 1st, 1851; he unfortunately landed at 
Las Pazas, Vuelto Abajo, where he was defeated after an 
heroic defense; was captured through the treachery of a 
certain Castañeda (who afterwards paid for his villainy with 
his life at the hands of an unknown patriot in a public café); 
was taken to Havana and there vilely executed by the 
garrotte, September 1st of the same year. Fifty of his fol- 
lowers were shot in the fortress of Atares. 

No. 75. Francisco Serrano. Spanish Captain-Gen- 
eral; President of the Council of Ministers; Regent of the 
Kingdom, and Count of San Antonio. Governed in Cuba 
from 1859 to 1862. He left in the country pleasant mem- 
ories of his fostering care of public instruction ; of the 
honors accorded by him to the Cuban sage José de la Luz 
on the occasion of the latter' s obsequies. He is remem- 
bered for the spirit of tolerance and liberality which he 
infused into the government of the oppressed Colony, and 
for the comparative freedom which he allowed to the 
press and to political manifestations generally. The coinci- 
dence of this new policy with the triple intervention in 
Mexico, the Civil War in the United States, the annexa- 
tion of Santo Domingo, and other disturbances in this 
hemisphere, has led many to believe that it was these 


international influences that reacted markedly on the des- 
tinies of the Antilles. It was feared that the military 
forces of the nation being engaged in outside undertak- 
ings, Cuba might rebel, for, as Serrano himself said, "if 
the condition of the Cubans be not improved they will 
have reason to revolt." This idea was strengthened by 
the fact that the policy of Serrano and Dulce was suc- 
ceeded, after the pacification of the continent, by the de- 
plorable administration of General Lersundi. 

No. 76. Domingo Dulce. Spanish General, born in 
Rioja, May, 1808. Discharged important duties and exer- 
cised great political influence. In December, 1862, he 
was appointed Governor of Cuba. He energetically re- 
pressed the slave traffic; caused the city walls of Havana 
to be demolished; established free High Schools and con- 
tinued the tolerant policy of his predecessor. He left the 
country calling himself un Cubano más (a more than 
Cuban) and published in Madrid a report favoring re- 
forms and abolition. Married in Madrid a Cuban lady, 
the Countess of Santovenia. On the outbreak of the Cu- 
ban Revolution, the provisional government of Spain again 
confided to him the government of Cuba (January, 1869); 
he published an appeal for peace and an amnesty; de- 
creed the liberty of the press, excepting in regard to re- 
ligion and slavery, and proposed political and administra- 
tive reforms. His efforts were fruitless, the revolutionists 
would not yield, and the Spanish and bureaucratic elements 
rebelled against him and defeated his plans, compelling 
him to return to Spain in June of the same year, notwith- 


standing that he combatted the insurrection with energy, 
instituted the confiscation of the property of the insurgents, 
organized the military commissions, and decreed the in- 
iquitous deportation of more than 300 Cubans to Fernando 

No. 77. Jose Morales Lemus. Born in Gibara, 
Cuba, 1808. Educated in the convent of San Francisco, 
Havana. Graduated in law in Puerto Principe, 1833, 
and practised his profession with great success in Havana. 
As an abolitionist, he liberated the slaves that he inherited. 
Took part in the conspiracy of López and later in that of 
Pinto, .and was expatriated in 1855. On his return to 
Havana, he became one of the supporters of El Siglo. 
Was elected commissioner by the city of Remedios on the 
Committee of Inquiry in 1865. Feigned illness to avoid 
presence at the Royal levee of Isabel II, and was the first 
to decree that the commissioners ought to retire and pro- 
test. Returned to Cuba ; when the revolution broke out he 
was prosecuted and his property confiscated; fled to the 
United States, was made President of the Junta Cubana, 
and did his utmost in Washington to obtain for the revolu- 
tionists a recognition of belligerency. Died in New York, 
June 23d, 1870. 

No. 78. Nicolas Azcarate. Born in Havana, 1828. 
He is identified with the city of Güines, having spent his 
childhood there. Graduated in law at Madrid, 1854, and 
practised his profession in Havana. Edited the Revista 
de Jurisprude7icia (1856), and colaborated in Pifieyro' s 
Revista del Pueblo (1865); cultivated and fostered litera- 


ture, his house having been a gathering point for all the noted 
literateurs. He published the proceedings of these social 
gatherings in two volumes, under the title of Noches Litera- 
rias. Was elected by the municipality of Güines as member of 
the Committee of Inquiry in 1865, and distinguished himself 
by his eloquence and liberalism; when that Committee dis- 
solved, he established himself in Madrid; founded the 
newspaper La Voz del Siglo and managed La Constitución, 
both journals of democratic tendencies. Returned to Ha- 
vana in 1875, and, notwithstanding his well-known anti- 
revolutionary opinions and his anti-slavery views, he was 
exiled by General Valmaseda, Went to Mexico and edited 
the Eco de Ambos Mundos. He now resides in Havana. 
Founded and was President of the new Lyceum. 

No. 79. Calixto Bernal. Born in Puerto Principe, 
October 14th, 1804. Graduated in law at Havana, 1822, 
and there practised his profession with success. Went to 
Europe in 1841, and settled in Madrid, where he published 
various notable books; Impresiones de Viaje, Teoría de la 
Autoridad, which latter has been translated into several 
languages, El Derecho and several others, besides a work 
in French, La Democratic au XIX Siecle. Distinguished 
himself as journalist. Elected by Puerto Principe to the 
Committee of Inquiry (1865). Twice elected Deputy to 
the Cortes by the Autonomist party for Santa Clara. 
Died in Madrid, 1885. 

No. 80. Rafael Fernandez de Castro. Born in 
Havana, 1 856. Lawyer and journalist. Professor of History 


in the University of Havana. Member oí the Executive 
Committee of the Autonomist party. Provincial Deputy 
from Jaruco, and Deputy to the Cortes from Las Villas. 
Author of the famous interpellation on administrative cor- 
ruption. A forcible orator. Is, at present, Commissioner 
in Madrid for the Circulo de Hacendados (Planters' Associ- 
ation) of the Island of Cuba. 

No. 81. Bernardo Portuondo. Born in Santiago de 
Cuba, 1840. Colonel in the Engineer Corps of the Spanish 
Army. Professor in the Military Engineers' Academy of 
Guadalajara. Commissioned by the Government in 1864 to 
follow the operations of the allies in the war with Denmark, 
and to report on the various military situations. Returned 
to Cuba in 1865; superintended several military construc- 
tions and devised the plans of the Central Railroad. 
Fought in the Cuban war as Chief Engineer until 1874, 
when he returned to Spain. Was elected Deputy to the 
Cortes in 1879 by the Autonomists of Santiago de Cuba 
and has been re-elected successively to the present time. 
He is a notable orator and lecturer, Professor of Mathe- 
matics, journalist, and political leader, and has published 
Un Tratado de Arquitectura, Estudios sobre organizaciones 
militares extrangeras, and other literary works. 

No. 82. Gabriel Millet. Born in Havana, 1823. 
Educated in San Fernando and in the Seminary. Gradu- 
ated in law at Barcelona, 1847, and after extensive travels 
practised his profession successfully in Havana and Pinar 
del Rio. Through laborious efforts and industry he 


amassed a fortune. He was imprisoned in 1869 as a dis- 
loyal subject and subsequently emigrated to Spain. He 
thence aided the revolutionary movement, was prosecuted 
for his political writings, and expelled from the country. 
He organized a corporation with a capital of $30,000 for 
the publication of La Tribuna, a periodical devoted to the 
interests of the Antilles, published in Madrid and edited by 
Labra. In 1881 he was elected Deputy to the Cortes by 
the Autonomists of Santa Clara; published a political 
brochure, Una Pascua en Madruga. Contributed generously 
to the erection of the mausoleum of José de la Luz in the 
cemetery of Havana. An indefatigable agitator and stead- 
fast patriot. Is widely reputed for his generous donations 
to the philanthropic institutions of his country. 

No. 83. José Güell y Renté. Born in Havana, 1815. 
Went to Barcelona in '35 and there graduated in law, 1838. 
Married, in Valladolid, the sister of King Francis of Asís. 
Conspired against Narváez. Was deputy to the Constitu- 
ent Assembly and took part in the September revolution. 
Poet, writer and journalist. Elected Senator in the Cortes 
by the University of Havana in 1879. Organized a project 
for erecting a new building for the Havana University, 
which was, however not realized; he obtained the necessary 
concessions from the State, came to Havana in 1884 to lay 
the corner-stone, and if death had not overtaken him in 
1886 his patriotism and tenacity of purpose would have 
accomplished his object. 

No. 84. José Maria Carbónell. Born in Matanzas. 
Is a distinguished jurist, Professor in the University of 


Havana, and Secretary of the Lyceum. Is at present Dean 
of the Law Association. Was elected Senator of the 
Kingdom by the University in 1886; delivered in the Senate 
a notable speech in favor of autonomy for the Spanish West 
Indies. He is a member of the Executive Committee of 
the Cuban. Autonomist party. 

No. 85. Emilio Terry. Born in Cienfuegos and edu- 
cated in La Empresa, Matanzas. Lawyer. Son of the 
wealthy capitalist, Don Tomás Terry, who figured worthily 
in the Committee of Inquiry (1865). Fulfilled his father's 
last wish by erecting the Terry Grand Theater in Cien- 
fuegos, the profits of which are devoted to the support of 
public schools. Member of the Executive Committee of 
the Autonomist party. Elected Deputy to the Cortes in 
1886, and energetically agitated the sugar question. Is 
now resident in Paris. 

No. 86. José R. Betancourt. Born in Puerto 
Principe, 1823. Lawyer. Published, 1850, a novel, La 
Feria de la Caridad. President of the Lyceum of Havana 
(1857). Colaborated in many newspapers. In 1869 he 
settled in Madrid. Was elected Deputy to the Cortes by 
Porto Rico in 1873. Author of the political brochure Las 
dos Banderas. Elected Deputy to the Cortes for Puerto 
Principe by the Autonomists (1879). Senator of the King- 
dom by the same party, 1886. Published a volume 
entitled Prosa de mis Versos, and another, Campaña Parla- 
mentaria. Died in Havana, 1890. 


No. 87. Antonio Zambana. Born in Havana, 1846. 
Graduated in law, 1867; colaborated in El Siglo and El 
Pars. Professor of Jurisprudence at an early age. Dis- 
tinguished himself as an orator. Took part in the revo- 
lutionary movement from the beginning of 1869. Mem- 
ber and Secretary of the Congress of Guáimaro. Went 
to New York ; published there his Revolución de Cuba and 
delivered lectures. Was commissioned to Mexico and 
Chile. Figured as diplomatist in Central America. Re- 
turned to Havana in 1886 and affiliated himself with the 
Autonomist party, which elected him Deputy in 1887. 
His election was not officially sanctioned because he was 
considered a foreigner. Founded, in Havana, the paper 
El Cubano. Resides in Baracoa, where he practises his 

No. 88. Miguel Figueroa. Born in Cárdenas, 1851. 
Lawyer. Member of the Executive Committee of the 
Autonomist party. Elected Deputy to the Cortes by Las 
Villas in 1886. A brilliant orator. Maintained in com- 
mon with the other representatives of his party the agita- 
tion which finally resulted in the complete abolition of 

No. 89. Alberto Ortiz. Born in Matanzas, 1851. A 
distinguished lawyer. Elected Deputy to the Cortes by 
the Autonomist party, of whose Executive Committee he 
is a member. Labored assiduously for the interests of his 
country in Madrid. Founded and edited in Havana, 
where he resides, the political journal El Acicate. 


No. 90. Elíseo Giberga. Born in Matanzas, 1855. 
Lawyer. Elected Deputy to the Cortes by the Autono- 
mist party ; Member of the Executive Committee of the 
latter. He has distinguished himself in the performance 
of his duties by his intelligence and industry, and by his 
unsullied patriotism. 

No. 91. José Bruzon. Born in Havana, 1841. Edu- 
cated in the College of El Salvador. A prominent and 
noted lawyer, who has a large and important clientelle. 
He was elected for three consecutive terms as Dean of the 
Law Association of Havana. He is an able forensic orator, 
and was the founder of the Liberal Autonomist party, 
in whose Executive Committee he occupies a conspicuous 
place, taking an active part in its deliberations and deci- 
sions. Elected member of the Havana Councils in 1878, 
when the Zanjón reforms were introduced. He discharged 
important commissions as member of that body, made a 
number of lucid reports, and was the energetic leader of 
the Autonomist minority. He was the unanimous nomi- 
nee of the Liberals of Havana for the Presidency of the 
Councils. His firmness of character, unswerving recti- 
tude and uncommon talents would have accorded him a 
membership of the Cortes, or other important public posts, 
had not his excessive modesty led him to refuse all honors. 
He has, however, occupied a place given only to men of 
the highest character and patriotism— the Presidency du- 
ring two biennial terms of the Sociedad de Amigos del Pais. 

No. 92. College of Santo Angel. An educational 
institute founded by Doña Susana Benítez during her life 


and supported since by her testamentary bequests. It 
gives room for twenty free scholarships, and furthermore 
affords primary instruction to a large number of day pupils. 
Its administration is in charge of the admirable educational 
section of the Sociedad Económica. 

No. 93. José Suarez Garcia. Born in Gijón, 1849. 
Came to Cuba in childhood. During the revolutionary 
period he distinguished himself in Güines by his modera- 
tion and humanity as captain of a company of volunteers. 
Founder of the Autonomist Committee of Güines and secre- 
tary of the same. Co-operated in establishing the weekly 
liberal journal La Unión, which he afterwards edited. He 
died in Güines, 1888, and the premature death of this 
Spanish writer, whose nobility of character was manifested 
by his disinterested love for Cuba, was mourned by the 
whole country. 

No. 94. Rafael Montoso. Born in Havana, 1852. 
Educated in the College of El Salvador, in the United 
States and in the College of San Francisco de Asís. Went to 
Madrid in 1867 and became known as a critic and littera- 
teur, and through a course of lectures delivered by him 
in the Athenaeum; was Vice-President of the section of 
Ethical Science and Political Economy of that institution. 
Editor of La Revista Contemporánea (1877). Colabor- 
ated in the Revista Europea; published an interesting 
study on Mary, Queen of Scots. Under-Secretary of the 
Society of Spanish Authors and Artists under the Presi- 
dency of Emilio Castelar. Returned to Cuba 1878; 


he figures as one of the founders and pillars of the Au- 
tonomist party, of whose Executive Committee he is a 
most active member ; prosecuted an active and vigorous 
campaign for the organization of that party. Editor of 
the Revista Cubana, El Triunfo and El País. Vice-Secre- 
tary of the Sociedad Económica. Lawyer. Elected Dep- 
uty to the Cortes by Havana and by Puerto Principe in 
three successive Legislatures, and in that capacity he has 
energetically maintained the rights of the country. Com- 
missioned by the Sociedad Económica (1890) to report to 
the Government in Madrid on the financial crisis. The 
exceptional talent and vast erudition of this publicist have 
gained for him, notwithstanding his youth, an extended 
reputation. He is unquestionably one of the most brilliant 
lights of the Spanish bar. 

No. 95. Asilo de Mendigos (Charity Asylum). 
One of the departments of the Maternity and Charity 
Hospital, supported, like the others, from the general fund 
of the institution, which is wholly derived from private 
endowments and donations. It receives no aid from the 
State. Through the efforts of Don Tomás Reina, a for- 
mer President of the institution, a bazaar was organized 
for the purpose of raising money for the asylum, but the 
large sum that was thus realized was arbitrarily appro- 
priated by General Concha and eventually became lost. 
Through subsequent fairs and similar undertakings, and 
with the aid of private benefactions, the building was 
finished and opened to its beneficiaries in 1884. Far from 
lending the institution any aid, the Government has put 


endless difficulties in its way. Its present Director, Don 
Cornelio Coppinger, one of the learned and industrious 
Cubans who reflect honor on their country, has succeeded 
after a hard struggle in emancipating the institution from 
the crushing weight of official tutelage. The municipality 
of Havana, inspired by Don Kamón de Armas, is seeking 
to gain control of this institution under the pretext that the 
private donations which support it are municipal in charac- 
ter. Should this ingenious scheme succeed, it would do 
away with the only almshouse in the country, and the 
institution would share the fate of everything of the kind 
under bureaucratic financeering. 

No. 96. Gertrudis Gomez de Avellaneda. — Born 
in Puerto Principe, March 23d, 1814. A poetess from her 
childhood. Went to Spain in 1836, and soon became 
known in Seville, Cadiz, and in the Lyceum of Madrid 
through her lyrics, dramas and novels. Published a volume 
of poems (1841); the novels Dos Mujeres, Espatolino, Gu- 
atimozín, La Baronesa de Joux, and various biographies and 
essays. Alfonso Munio, a tragedy, was acted with great 
success (1844) ; Saul, which has been translated into three 
languages, El Príncipe de Viana, Egilona, Oatilina and 
others ; and last of all, Baltasar, her masterpiece, which 
crowned her reputation and which confirms the opinion of 
the eminent critics who regarded her as among the foremost 
of the Spanish poets. In 1860 she was laurelled in the 
Lyceum of Havana, where she was triumphantly received. 
She founded here the periodical, El Album; published 
various novels and other literary works. Died in Madrid 


February 2d, 1873. Her genius has greatly contributed 
to enhance the standard of Spanish literature. 

No. 97. The Terry Theatre. A grand auditorium 
erected in Cienfuegos by the wealthy banker, Don Tomás 
Terry, and endowed by his sons and relatives. The net 
income is devoted to the support of common and industrial 
public schools. 

No. 98. José M. Zayas. Born in Sabanillas, Matanzas. 
Educated in the College of San Cristóbal. Graduated in law, 
1846. Vice-President of the College of El Salvador under 
Luz Caballero, and on the death of the latter, succeeded 
as President. Author of a Spanish grammar. Colabo- 
rated in El Siglo, El Triunfo and El Pais. Translated 
the story of Blue Beard from the French of Eugene Sue. 
Published, in 1869, the political tractate Cuba, su Porvenir. 
Member of the Executive Committee of the Autonomist 
party. Died in 1888. Was a man of extensive learning, 
firm character and unswerving rectitude. 

No. 99. Ramón Zambrana. Born in Havana, 1817. 
Was the first graduate in medicine and surgery in our 
university (1846). Professor in the same and in the semi- 
nary. Made important original researches. Discharged 
many scientific commissions and offices. Inspector of the 
Institute of Chemistry and of the Botanical Garden. Con- 
tributed scientific and philosophical articles to all the 
principal publications of the Academy of Sciences, of which 
he was one one of the founders ; also aided in the establish- 

• 24 


ment of the Gaceta Médica, Prontuario Médico Quirúrgico, 
El Kaleidoscopio and other notable publications. Pub- 
lished a volume, Soliloquios, 1865. Died in 1866. His 
body was laid in state in the Hall of the University. 

No. 100. Tristan Medina. Born in Bayamo, 1833. 
Travelled through the United States and Europe. Was 
ordained to the priesthood, in 1845, at the Seminary 
of San Basilio the Greater, where he became professor. 
Acquired reputation in Havana and in the Peninsula as 
a writer and ecclesiastic. Was selected by the Spanish 
Academy to deliver the oration on the anniversary of 
Cervantes' death in the Church of the Trinitarios, Madrid ; 
his deliverance gaining for him a leading place as a pulpit 
orator. A poet, novelist, and profound thinker ; he fell 
away from Catholicism and became a Protestant minister. 
He died in Madrid. 

No. 101. Miguel D. Santos. Born in New Orleans, 
1843, of Cuban parents and brought to Cuba the following 
year. Was educated in the College of Carraguao and 
graduated in philosophy. Abandoned the pursuit of law 
for that of theology. Received holy orders in the Seminary 
of San Carlos in 1869. Soon distinguished himself as a 
facile and clear-minded speaker. In 1876 he was deported, 
together with Arteaga and Fuentes, clergymen who had 
greatly elevated the pulpit. Was elected in 1888 to the 
rectorship in Santiago de las Vegas, where he resides. Is 
beloved by his parishioners for his gentleness, culture, and 
active charity ; he donates considerable sums yearly . to 


reward the pupils of the charity schools, which he 
frequently visits and inspects. 

No. 102. Juan Vilaro y Diaz. Born in Havana, 
1838. Graduated in natural sciences and in medicine at 
the University of Havana. Favorite pupil of the learned 
naturalist, Felipe Poey. Member of numerous scientific 
associations at home and abroad. Professor in the Univer- 
sity of Havana. Emigrated during the revolutionary 
period, and acquired reputation abroad through various 
scientific labors. 

Dr. Vilaró' s researches and writings, particularly as 
member of the Fisheries Commission, have gained for him 
a recognized place as an accomplished naturalist. His 
specialty is Pisciculture. Although still young he is 
rich in knowledge and enthusiasm, and with a persever- 
ing patriotism he follows in the footsteps of his great 
master Poey. He is universally popular. 

No. 103. Luisa Pérez. Born in Cobre (Santiago de 
Cuba), 1837. Educated herself in the country with the 
aid of a few books. Became known as a poetess through 
the newspaper press of Santiago and Havana. Married 
Ramon Zambrana in 1858. As a poetess she is second 
only to Avellaneda in merit and in popularity. Published 
two volumes, 1856 and 1860. Translated several works. 
Published a treatise, Educación y Urbanidad. She ceased 
writing after the death of her husband. Resides in Havana 
and devotes her time to the duties of the humble home, 
which she embellishes with her virtues. 


No. 104. Aurelia Castillo de González. Born in 
Puerte Principe. Colaborated in the newspapers of that 
city. Her poems are highly praised by the critics. Has 
published a narrative of her travels in Europe, chiefly 
descriptive of the Paris Exposition, highly instructive and 
written in a charming style. 

No. 105. Francisco Camps. (Read note on page 265). 
Has recently published an octavo volume of 400 pages, 
entitled Españoles é Insurrectos. 

No. 106. Susana Benitez. Born in Havana. Founded 
and supported during life the free school of El Sanfo Angel; 
at her death she endowed -the institution with means suffi- 
cient to maintain it, placing it in charge of the Society 
Amigos del Pais. 

No. 107. A Group of Palms. The most beautiful 
tree of the tropic zone. Its beauty, however, does not ex- 
ceed its usefulness, both its fruit and its material being 
applied to many rustic needs. 






Note. — The general condition of Cuban affairs, as it pre- 
sented itself in its latest political and social developments 
up to the outbreak of the present insurrection, has been 
clearly and fully demonstrated by Señor Cabrera in the 
preceding pages. As already noted, his work proceeded on 
lines laid out for him by another writer, whose misrepresen- 
tations he has taken occasion to correct. These limitations 
excluded a detailed consideration of the geography and his- 
tory of Cuba, which to English readers, unfamiliar with the 
subject, is necessary for its fuller comprehension, and the 
following has accordingly been added by the editor. 


Cuba, "the Pearl of the Antilles" 1 as it is called by 
Spanish writers, the " pearl in the mire" as it is termed 
by Cuban authors, " the most beautiful land that eyes ever 

] The term Antilles is doubtless derived from Antilla, the name of 
the unknown island in the Western Sea which Aristotle mentions as 
having once been visited by the Carthegenians, and which, in the 
uncertainty of geographic knowledge during the Middle Ages, became 
confused with the mythical island of Atlantis, referred to by Strabo 
and Plato. Martin Behaim, the noted German cosmographer, who 
constructed a globe at his home in Nuremberg in 1492, after his return 
from his explorations for the Portugese Government, marks the island 
"Antilia" as situated in the Atlantic Ocean on the Tropic of Cancer, 
midway between the coast of Africa and the great island of "Cipango" 
or Japan, on the coast of Asia. The appellation as referring to the 
discoveries of Columbus was first used by the historian Pietro Martire 
d'Anghiera in 1493. It was soon thereafter applied to the island of 
Haiti by Amerigo Vespucci in his writings, and subsequently was 
made to include the entire West Indian archipelago. 


beheld" as it was described by Columbus, is an island lying 
between the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic, extending 
from 74° to 85° of west longitude and 19° 50' to 23° 10' of 
north latitude. It is the largest of the West Indian Islands, 
and presents the form of a long, rather irregular crescent, 
with its inner curvature to the south. Its greatest length is 
760 miles, its greatest width 135 miles, while the average 
breadth is 80 miles. Its total area is 43,300 square 
miles, exclusive of the surrounding smaller islands. At 
its northernmost convexity its coast at Cape Ycacos is but 
130 miles from Cape Sable in Florida; its western extremity, 
Cape Antonio, is less than that distance from Cape Catoche 
in Yucatan, while on the east the still narrower Windward 
Passage separates it from the neighboring Island of Haiti. 
The coast of Cuba, almost uniformly low and fiat, is in- 
dented with numerous bays and estuaries, many of which 
afford most excellent harbors. The coast is guarded 
throughout almost its entire extent by an outlaying chain 
of coral reefs, many of which expand into islands of con- 
siderable size, and which make the approach to the coast and 
its harbors a matter requiring accurate pilotage. Of the 
habors, the most important on the north coast are Bahia- 
honda, Cabanas, Mariel, Havana, Matanzas, Cárdenas, 
Sagua la Grande, Caibarieu, Nuevitas, Manati, Puerto 
Padre, Gibara, Banes, Ñipe, Levisa, Tánamo, and Baracoa, 
and on the south Guantánamo, Santiago de Cuba, Manza- 
nillo, Casilda, Trinidad, and Cienfuegos. Of these, the last 
named is famous as one of the most magnificent harbors in 
the world, containing upwards of fifty square miles of land- 
locked water. The northern coast is studded along the 


middle of its length with some 570 islands and keys, while 
the southern coast is dotted along the greater part of its ex- 
tent with 730 islands, of which the largest is the Isle of 
Pines (Isla de Pinos), whose area is 1214 square miles. 

The surface of the island is traversed in the middle, 
throughout practically its entire length, by a mountain 
range which, running from the western end of the island, 
gradually increases in altitude and extent as it approaches 
the eastern end. At its western extremity it forms the 
peak Guajaihon, which attains a height of over 2500 feet ; 
further east, near the middle of the southern coast, just 
back of the harbor of Trinidad, the summit of Potrerillo is 
3000 feet above the sea; still further east the peaks of 
Yunque and Ajo del Torro rise to a height of 3500 feet, 
that of Gran Piedra to 5200 feet, and finally in the Cobre 
Mountains on the southeastern coast the peak of Tarquino 
rises to nearly 8000 feet, the highest point on the island. 
The central and western parts of the island consist geologi- 
cally of two ridges of limestone, one of sandstone, and a 
smaller one of gypsum. In the limestone formations are 
found, as usual, numerous caves, some of them of consider- 
able extent. Eastward of the central section the higher 
mountain ranges show a main formation of limestone with 
secondary formations of syenitic and serpentine strata, from 
the latter of which petroleum oozes in many places and 
gathers into pools in the rocky district toward *the eastern 
extremity of the island. 

The fluvial system of the island necessarily consists of 
streams of inconsiderable length, flowing down the northern 
and southern watersheds from the mountain range to the 


sea. But few of the rivers are navigable for any consider- 
able length, and of these the largest is the Rio Cauto, which 
flows from the Copper Mountains (Cobre) westerly through 
the valley of Bayamo into the bay of Buena Esperanza. It 
is navigable for a length of sixty miles. Next in size are 
the Sagua la Grande and Sagua la Chica, which empty into 
the Atlantic on the northern coast, the former being navi- 
gable for fifteen miles, the latter for a shorter distance. 
Smaller than these and scarcely navigable at all are the 
North and South Iatibonica, the Cuyaguateje, the Sasa, and 
several others. In a huge cavern in the hill of Moa, 
northeast of Guantanamo, the river Moa forms a magnifi- 
cent cascade, descending for nearly 300 feet. Throughout 
the island the fertile valleys between the uplands are 
drained by a close network of streamlets, which, as they 
approach the coast, spread into swamps and marshes, some 
of which, like the Ciénaga de Zapata on the southern coast, 
southeast from Havana, have much the character of the 
Florida Everglades. 

The climate of this mountainous island is, in general, 
agreeable and salubrious. Situated as it is, just under the 
line of the northern tropic, the four seasons of the temperate 
zone are merged into the two which characterize a tropical 
climate, the wet and the dry season. The former, occurring 
when the sun is north of the equator, is the hot season, 
which lasts from April to October, while the cooler dry 
season takes the place of the autumn, winter and early 
spring of the more northern latitudes, when the sun is south 
of the equator. 

The temperature on the lowlands along the sea ranges 


throughout the year between a minimum of about 60° 
and a maximum of 90°. The average temperature of the 
year at Havana, which lies on the outer curve of the 
island on the north, is 77°. At Santiago, near the south- 
ernmost point of Cuba, it is 8(H°. The average tempera- 
ture in July and August at Havana is 82°, at Santiago 
85. 4° ; in January and December the average at Havana 
is 72°, at Santiago 74.2°. All along the coast the heat 
of the summer is tempered by the sea breeze, which makes 
itself felt from noonday to the evening. Away from 
the coast, on the uplands of the interior, the climate is at 
once more temperate and bracing. The yellow fever, 
which during the hot season affects the seaports of the 
islands, more, indeed, because of lack of proper sanitation 
than for any other reason, is wholly unknown in the inte- 
rior. There the temperature, in the cooler months of the 
year, falls to the freezing point and the winter is charater- 
ized by cool north winds which are more especially marked 
in the northern and western sections of the island. The 
storms which sweep northward from the tropic zone of the 
Atlantic, especially at the equinoctial seasons, center east- 
wardly of Cuba, and the hurricanes, which so frequently 
whirl over the Lesser Antilles and which are so dreaded on 
the islands of the Bahama group, are but rarely felt on the 
Cuban coasts. These atmospheric disturbances are checked 
and their severity tempered by the influence of the con- 
tinuous mountain chain that traverses the length of the 
island and which, in its wider part, splits into separate 
ranges in proximity to the coast. Though of recent geo- 
logic origin, the island is free from volcanic disturbances. 


Earthquakes, which are of frequent occurrence on the vol- 
canic islands of the Lesser Antilles, are comparatively rare 
in Cuba and have been recorded only as slight distur- 
bances along the southern coast. 

The mineral resources of Cuba have attracted attention 
from the time of its discovery, but remain, as yet, only 
slightly developed. Alluvial gold deposits in the rivers 
Holguin, Escambray, Sagua la Grande, Agabama and 
others have been known for centuries, but have never been 
worked successfully, though it is probable that with recent 
improvements in amalgamating appliances these workings 
could be made profitable. Silver ore has also been found, 
which, with modern machinery for its reduction, would well 
repay for its mining. In the Sierra Cobre (Copper Moun- 
tains), on the eastern coast of the island, are extensive lodes 
of copper ore, some of it very rich in metal, and a flourishing 
mining and smelting industry is carried on in that section, 
of which the city of Santiago de Cuba is the centre. 
Valuable deposits of a high grade iron ore are found in 
various parts of the island, and are being mined success- 
fully. Bituminous coal of excellent quality is also found 
in extensive layers, and asphaltum beds and petroleum are 
found in the districts between the base of the eastern moun- 
tains and the coast. Gypsum, slate, jasper, and marble quar- 
ries have been opened at various points on the island, some 
of the products proving of extraordinary value and utility. 

Excepting where the rock foundation of the mountain 
ridges breaks out in the lower levels, the soil of the island 
has all of a tropical fertility. Only a fraction of the arable 
surface is under cultivation and vast stretches of land are 


covered with primeval forests. The dominant growth 
throughout the island, but especially in its western half, is 
the royal palm ( Oreodoxa regia), which is at once the typical, 
most majestic, and most valuable tree of Cuba. Besides 
this, the growth consists principally of cedar, mahogany, 
ebony, and other hard- wood trees, several of which, like the 
granadilla and sabicci, are peculiar to the island. The 
forests are thickened with an exuberant undergrowth of 
tropical plants, which makes it almost impossible to pene- 
trate them except by hewing the way. Tropical fruits 
flourish in abundance. Besides the orange, lemon, pine- 
apple, and banana, and especially the plantain, there are 
the sweet and bitter cassava, the former an edible fruit, and 
the latter, after preparation, baked into a kind of a bread. 
Coifee, cocoa, and chocolate are also grown ; rice is easily 
cultivated and indian corn is native to the soil. Cotton has 
also been planted with success, but the chief agricultural 
products of the island are sugar and tobacco, which have 
thus far been the main sources of its wealth, the export of 
coifee having almost ceased under the competition of the 
products of Brazil and Java. The sugar, tobacco, and 
herding industries, forming the main factors in the present 
economic and political conditions of Cuba, have been fully 
treated by Señor Cabrera in the course of his work, and 
there remains only a brief resume of the general history of 
the island to be added for the information of the reader. 

On October 28th, 1492, sixteen days after Columbus 
had made his first land- fall on the island which he named 


St. Salvador, he set foot on what is now known as Cuba. 
The natives wore gold ornaments, which so greatly excited 
the interest of the Spanish sailors that the natives were led 
to interpret the questions, put to them by Columbus, as 
having reference to gold, and they gave him to understand 
that it had been gotten from "Cubanacan,". in the interior. 
Columbus named the country Juana, after Prince Juan, the 
son of Ferdinand and Isabella. After the King's death, 
Diego Velasquez, who had accompanied Columbus on his 
second voyage, renamed the island in his honor, Fer- 
nandina. Subsequently it was called Santiago, after the 
patron saint of Spain, but this was again changed to Ave 
Maria, in honor of the Virgin. The confusion of these vari- 
ous appellations naturally resulted in none of them being re- 
tained. "Cubanacan" was well remembered; it was the 
" place of Cuba" where the gold was found, and thus that 
native name became generally accepted for the entire country. 
The island was twice visited by Columbus after its dis- 
covery, in 1494 and in 1502. He appears to have always 
regarded it as a part of the mainland, as he believed, of 
Asia, and it was not until 1508 that it was proved to be an 
island. In 1511 Columbus' son Diego undertook to colo- 
nize it and sent out Velasquez with some 300 men for 
that purpose. They settled at Baracoa, and in 1514 they 
planted communities at Santiago and at Trinidad. In the 
following year a settlement called San Cristobal de la 
Habana was located at what is now known as Batabano, 
but in 1519 these settlers removed their town and its name 
to a more inviting spot just across the island on the northern 
coast, and there the settlement soon grew into importance. 


These immigrants found the natives peaceable, happy 
and contented, spread over the island under the govern- 
ment of nine independent chiefs. They were well on 
beyond a condition of savagery, cultivated the soil and 
led a settled life, and appear to have had ideas of an 
invisible and beneficent Supreme Being, and a religion 
without a priesthood or ceremonial rites. They were 
quickly subjugated by Velasquez, who, however, treated 
them humanely, as did also his immediate successors. Negro 
slaves were imported to work in the fields and the natives 
were left unmolested. In 1538 a French privateer attacked 
Havana and set fire to the town, and it was thereupon 
determined to guard against a repetition of such a disaster 
by erecting defences. Hernando de Soto, who, as an impe- 
cunious adventurer, had followed Pizarro to Peru and had 
returned enriched with the plunder of that unfortunate 
country, was commissioned by the Emperor Charles V as 
governor of Cuba and Florida. He was to build a fortress 
at Havana, and began the erection of the Castillo de la 
Fuerza, which was finished under De Soto's lieutenants, 
while he was searching for the El Dorado supposed to exist 
in Florida and finding in its stead a watery grave in the 
Mississippi. Under these lieutenants and their successors the 
Cuban natives were enslaved and notwithstanding that like 
all the American aborigines they could not live in slavery 
and rapidly pined to death, the fatal policy was persisted in 
with the result that in a few generations the semi-civilized 
aborigines were practically extinct, and only remnants of the 
more barbarous mountain tribes remained. In 1551 the 
residence of the governor was transferred from Santiago to 


Havana and the latter rapidly gained in importance. In 
1554 Havana was again attacked by the French, and parti- 
ally destroyed, and in the following year it was plundered 
by pirates. But the commanding situation of Havana and 
its exceptionally fine harbor overcame all obstacles to its 
progress, and the fertility of the soil attracted increasing 
numbers of immigrants. The colonists devoted themselves 
to cultivating sugar and tobacco in addition to that first re- 
source of new settlers, the raising of cattle. Negro slavery 
became an important element of the colonial organization, 
and together with its superficial economic advantages the 
system duly developed all the deep-seated evils inevitably 
resulting from it. The colony became more and more an 
object of attack by the enemies of Spain in the course of 
the successive wars that marked the reigns of Charles I 
(Emperor Charles V) and his son Philip II. Havana having 
been seriously menaced by the English under Drake in 
1585, it was determined to protect the port with additional 
defences. Two fortresses, the Bateria de la Punta and the 
castle of the Morro were accordingly begun in 1589 and 
completed in 1597, and these defences served their purposes 
until the development of naval armament rendered them 
inadequate. Havana became the commercial center of the 
Spanish-American dominions and the calling place of the 
Spanish treasure-ships bearing silver from Mexico and gold 
from Honduras. The expulsion of the Moriscoes from Spain 
by Philip III in 1609, a complement of the equally idiotic 
crime against the Jews in 1492, brought about, among other 
results, the practical extinction of the sugar and tobacco 
culture in Spain and its correspondingly increased develop- 


ment in Cuba. But the wars in which Spain was almost 
incessantly involved throughout the seventeenth century 
reacted severely on the prosperity of Cuba and greatly 
hindered its progress. The maritime power of Spain, which 
had been shattered by the destruction of the Armada in 
1588, had declined to the lowest point during the Thirty 
Years' War, and after the capture of the Spanish treasure 
fleet with its three million dollars by the Dutch in 1628, 
and the subsequent destruction of the Spanish naval fleet in 
the Downs, the West Indian waters were left almost bare 
of protection. The Spanish government under Philip IV 
and Charles II, while unable to properly protect its colonial 
commerce under the Spanish flag, made it illegal to trade 
under any other, and furthermore hampered the colonists 
by restricting their legitimate commerce with the home 
country to the port of Seville and selling the monopoly 
of that. The natural result of these trade restrictions 
was the rapid growth of an extensive smuggling trade 
between the colonists and all sorts of foreign maritime 
adventurers. At first the latter found it convenient to 
make their headquarters in the bays of the neighboring 
island of Hispaniola (St. Domingo), which, through the 
repressive measures of its governors and by reason of the 
greater attraction of Cuba, had gradually been abandoned 
by its settlers. The few people remaining lived mainly 
from the herds of cattle which had multiplied and roamed 
wild over the island ; they prepared the meat of these 
animals by a peculiar process of smoking called "bucan- 
ning," from the smoke-houses which were called "bucans," 
and the smugglers, adopting this method of preserving 


meat for their ships, came to be known as "Buccaneers." 
From being merely smugglers, in constant conflict with the 
Spanish officials on land and water, they soon grew to 
be a powerful body of freebooters who preyed mainly on 
Spanish commerce. They gradually attained to the posi- 
tion of a hireling navy, and aided the French at Tortuga 
in 1641 and 1660, and the English in the occupation of 
Jamaica by Cromwell's fleet in 1665. Recruited from 
the Dutch, French and English privateers, they became 
the terror of the Spanish colonies ; the town of New 
Segovia in Honduras was sacked by them in 1654, and 
shortly thereafter the towns of Maracaibo and Gibraltar in 
the Gulf of Venezuela were plundered and several boat's 
crews of Spanish sailors put to death by them. After the 
taking of Jamaica by the English the Buccaneers threat- 
ened even Havana, and this, together with the increasing 
danger of invasion by the English and Dutch, led to the 
erection of a defensive wall across the projecting neck of 
land on which Havana is laid out. This was begun in 
1665 and completed in 1670. The depredations of the 
Buccaneers continued until long after the treaty of 1670 
between Spain and England proclaimed peace in the West 
Indian colonies, and began to decline only when the war of 
1689 between France and England caused antagonism be- 
tween the English and French Buccaneers. Towards the 
end of the century, with the partial abatement of these free- 
booters, the Cuban settlements revived materially, and after 
the treaty of Ryswick in 1697 set the seal of general con- 
demnation on the Buccaneers, the colony grew rapidly in 


The eighteenth century opened with the War of the 
Spanish Succession, but the complicated relations of the 
conflicting powers left Cuba comparatively free from the 
strife. The treaty of Utrecht in 1713, by which the 
Hapsburg rule in Spain was finally ended and the succes- 
sion of the Bourbon dynasty established under Philip V, 
opened a new era in Spain and incidentally in Cuba as 
well. By this time a considerable number of settlements 
had been successfully planted in the interior of the island 
and the agricultural wealth of Cuba began to make a large 
showing by the side of the bullion products of the other 
Spanish-American colonies. Up to this period Cuba's con- 
tribution to the Spanish exchequer was obtained mainly 
through commercial monopolies centered in Seville or Cadiz. 
In 1717 a new policy was adopted ; the tobacco trade was 
made a royal monopoly and out of that measure grew the 
first serious clashing between the colonists and the mother 
country. The enforcement of the monopoly was violently 
resisted and a number of sanguinary collisions between the 
people and the military took place. This monopoly, together 
with the restrictions imposed on foreign trade with the Span- 
ish colonies, again gave rise to systematic smuggling, mainly 
by British traders in Jamaica. The constant friction and 
frequent bloody encounters thus engendered brought on 
another Anglo-Spanish war in 1739, which afterwards (1741 ) 
merged into the general European war that ended in 1748. 
In the thirteen years of peace that followed, the smuggling 
trade with Cuba grew so completely out of control that the 
tobacco monopoly was given up and a system of farming- 
out its revenues to private monopolists was undertaken in 


its stead. But this only resulted in further trouble. The 
extension of the English colonies and the growth of British 
commercial influence in America constantly excited the 
jealousy of France and Spain, and after the accession of 
Charles III the third "Family Compact" was made in 
1759 between the two Bourbon houses to put a check on 
this expansion. War began in 1762, and in June of that 
year Havana was taken by an English fleet consisting of 44 
men-of-war and about 150 other vessels under Admiral 
Pocock, carrying an army of some 15,000 men under Lord 
Albemarle. The Spanish garrison numbered 27, 000 men 
under Governor Porto- Carrero. The siege began June 3d, 
and after a stubborn resistance Morro Castle surrendered 
on July 30th, and the city on August 13th. An enorrfcous 
booty fell into the hands of the English, the prize money 
divided among them amounting to over three and a half 
millions of dollars. The English held the city and sur- 
rounding districts until early in the following year, when, 
in accordance with the treaty of Paris (February 1763), 
Spain regained possession of the colony in return for the 
cession of Florida to England. During their occupation of 
Havana the English opened the port to free commerce, 
and their brief stay proved to be of permanent importance, 
inasmuch as the Spanish government found it practically 
impossible to re-establish the old restrictions. In 1765 the 
commerce of the island with the home country was freed 
from its former limitations and the colony rapidly advanced 
in its development. In 1777 Cuba was given an indepen- 
dent colonial administration under a captain-general. At 
this time England was fighting to prevent the independence 


of its American colonies and the two Bourbon monarchies 
availed themselves of the opportunity to get even with their 
enemy. In 1778 France joined the colonists in their war 
against the British and in the following year Spain took a 
hand in her own behalf, recaptured the island of Minorca, 
laid siege to Gibraltar, and drove the English from a num- 
ber of the smaller West India Islands, which they had 
occupied. The northern powers of Europe, all jealous of 
England's maritime supremacy, assumed an armed neu- 
trality, in readiness to join in the fray when there was any- 
thing to be gained by it, and this, together with England's 
Irish troubles, hastened the treaty of Versailles, whereby 
Spain, besides retaining Minorca, regained Florida from 
England. After the establishment of American indepen- 
dence the ports of Havana and Santiago were opened to free 
commerce with foreign nations, excepting a few minor pro- 
ductions and the slave trade. Havana became the center 
of this iniquitous but lucrative traffic, and by the end of the 
century had grown to be the most important city in America. 
In 1790 Luis de las Casas was made Captain-General. He 
furthered the commerce of Havana by removing the restric- 
tions on the slave trade, promoted the agricultural develop- 
ment of the entire island by introducing the culture of indigo 
and other foreign products, inaugurated a series of important 
public works and labored earnestly to effect the emancipa- 
tion of the enslaved remnant of the native Indians. He suc- 
ceeded in maintaining the tranquility of the negro population 
of Cuba under the trying conditions brought about by the 
Revolution in St. Domingo, and aided the immigration of 
French Royalists from that island. 


The administration of Las Casas marks a Renaissance 
period in Cuban history. The material growth of the 
colony now began to manifest itself in a degree of individu- 
ality and to be reflected in its intellectual life. Semi-politi- 
cal associations under the name of Sociedades Económicas de 
Amigos del País were formed for the advancement of cul- 
ture, and these organizations continued thereafter to exert an 
important influence on the current of Cuban affairs. The 
establishment of the American Union gave an impulse to 
progress in the neighboring Spanish colony, and Las Casas, 
in earnest co-operation with the leading men of the commu- 
nity, gave effect to the general liberalizing tendency. His 
administration ended in December 1796, and its close was 
signalized by the transfer of the remains of Columbus from 
San Domingo to Havana, where they were interred in the 

Las Casas was succeeded by the Count of Santa Clara, 
who exerted himself energetically to place the various towns 
of the island in a condition of defense against the constantly 
threatened attacks of the English fleet. He strengthened the 
fortifications of Havana by a fosse and covered way within 
the city and by a battery outside the town, the latter named 
after him the redoubt of Santa Clara. He did much to fur- 
ther the material interests of the colony, opening the ports 
of the island to free entry by neutrals during the blockade 
of the Spanish ports, and was otherwise active in promoting 
its development. He resigned in May 1799, and was suc- 
ceeded by the Marquis of Someruelos. 

The rehabilitation of Spain during the 18th century, after 
its deep depression under the Hapsburg rule, had proceeded 


largely under the influence of the French alliance. But 
the "Family Compact" was broken by the Revolution; the 
Sans-Culottes did away with Louis XVI, the Republic re- 
placed the Monarchy and ended for a generation the support 
of Bourbon Spain by Bourbon France. The Spanish armies 
of the first coalition that sought to re-establish the French 
monarchy suffered overwhelming defeat, and by the treaty 
of Basel in 1794 Spain gave up to France her remaining 
share of San Domingo and became a servant of the Republic. 
Liberal reforms in church and state, otherwise undreamed 
of in Spanish policy, were forced on Charles IV and his 
ministers by the Directory, and these reforms were intro- 
duced into Cuba and became emphasized in their western 
environment. In 1796, by the treaty of San Ildefonso, 
Spain was forced into a new alliance with France, but this 
time to the advantage of the latter exclusively. Dragged 
into a war with England, the Spanish naval power was 
broken at the battle of Cape St. Vincent (1797), communi- 
cation with the colonies almost completely broken off, and 
for a number of years Cuba was left practically to its own 

The opening of the 19th century found Spain prostrate 
at the feet of Napoleon. Its Bourbon government was left 
in place by the First Consul, but he used it as a cat's paw 
for the furtherance of French interests. So completely was 
Spain dominated by France that it was coerced in 1800 into 
giving up its remaining possessions in " Louisiana," to be 
afterwards marketed by Napoleon to the United States for 
sixty million francs. The Spanish government had no 
alternative but to leave the colonies to defend themselves 


against the British fleets as best they could. Porto Rico 
was attacked, Cuba threatened, and Trinidad was taken by 
the English, and only the failure of the British attack on 
Porto Rico and the increased defenses of the Cuban seaports 
saved the island from the invasion which the English were 
planning to undertake when the treaty of Amiens, 1802, put 
an end to the war. In this same year a serious calamity 
befell Havana in the destruction by fire of the suburb Jesu 
Maria, whereby some 12,000 people were rendered homeless, 
and the resources of the capital largely effected by the loss. 
During the barely three years of peace that followed the 
treaty of Amiens, Cuban commerce with the home country 
was resuscitated, and the colony replenished the Peninsular 
treasury with the taxes which had remained uncollected 
during the preceding war. At the same time the slave popu- 
lation of the island was rapidly augmented by large importa- 
tions of African negroes, the increased difficulties attending 
the slave trade during the preceding wars being for the time 
removed. Meantime a bitter contest was going on between 
the French and the negroes in the neighboring island of San 
Domingo, the rancor of this race war becoming intensified 
by the treacherous deportation of the leader of the blacks, 
Toussaint L'Overture, to Paris, where he died in prison. 
In 1803 the British came to the aid of the Dominicans, the 
remnant of the French army surrendered, and the blacks 
organized themselves into a Republic. These developments 
caused a ferment of excitement among the negro population 
of Cuba, and only the prudent measures and liberal policy 
which had been originated by Las Casas and continued by 
his successors prevented serious disturbances from taking 


place. This tranquility was, however, maintained with diffi- 
culty, and subsequently gave way to frequent bloody risings. 

Towards the end of 1804 Spain was again dragooned by 
Napoleon into his war with England, and in the following 
year saw the remnant of its naval forces swept away at 
Finestere and Trafalgar, and one of its South American 
colonies, Buenos Ayres, seized by the English. Cuba was 
again threatened by an English fleet, commerce was much 
restricted, various minor ports on the island were plundered 
by freebooters ; but while the material growth of the colony 
was thus in a measure arrested on the one hand, other 
developments of the course of events tended greatly towards 
its advancement. The cession of San Domingo, the French 
occupation of that island and the race war which followed, 
benefited Cuba through the large immigration of the white 
settlers who were driven out of San Domingo. The num- 
ber of these who took refuge in Cuba during the decade 
ending with 1808 has been calculated at fully thirty thou- 
sand ; they settled mainly in the eastern districts of the 
island and contributed greatly to the development of that 
section. These immigrants introduced the culture of the 
coffee plant, which rapidly grew into an important industry 
and soon became a large element of the colonial commerce. 
The cession of Louisiana had a like effect on a smaller scale, 
several thousands of Spanish settlers in that territory emi- 
grating to Cuba after Spain relinquished its possession. 

Napoleon having conquered peace and quieted the con- 
tinental powers by the treaty of Tilsit (1807), now turned 
to carry out his long planned purpose of absorbing the 
Spanish monarchy, incidentally that of Portugal, and crip- 


pling England by barring out its commerce from Europe 
and the Peninsular colonies in America. The Spanish 
king, Charles IV, was utterly incompetent; the government 
was utterly disorganized; the queen carried on a demoral- 
izing intrigue with the prime minister, Godoy, her creature, 
who was utterly corrupt ; the crown prince was intriguing 
to supplant the king, and all turned to Paris to further their 
individual ends. Godoy made a treaty with Napoleon for 
the avowed purpose of partitioning Portugal, and quickly a 
French army crossed Spain and occupied that kingdom. 
The crown prince made a bid for Napoleon's support, his 
scheme was discovered, he was put under arrest, and Napo- 
leon availed himself of the occasion to send an army to sup- 
port the prince. The king and his ministers prepared to 
flee ; Madrid rose against the government, and the king was 
forced to abdicate in favor of his son. This step, however, 
was premature for Napoleon ; his army under Murat occu- 
pied Madrid (March 1808), the king was induced to retract 
his abdication ; the crown prince was forced to step aside 
and the king was then coerced into abdicating without a 
successor. Napoleon now put his brother Joseph on the 
Spanish throne and his larger policy was then revealed. 

The Spanish people, who, through the rising in Madrid, 
had obtained the abdication of Charles IV in favor of his 
son Ferdinand, saw themselves cheated and humiliated by 
the French Emperor. The country, thrown into confusion 
by the storm of events, now became wrought into a frenzy 
of passion against the French invaders ; the populace rose 
on every side ; a provisional government was organized at 
Madrid in the name of Ferdinand VII ; this was soon driven 


to take refuge in Seville, and then began the struggle against 
the French autocrat which marked the beginning of his 

In the new condition of affairs England turned from 
being an enemy of Spain to becoming its ally and protec- 
tor. An English army under Wellington in Portugal 
became the nucleus of resistance against the French, and 
eventually, after a bloody and protracted struggle, the 
independence of the country was preserved. In place of 
English fleets threatening the Cuban coasts, English ships 
now aided in extending the commerce of the colony, and 
thus an influence that had long opposed the development of 
Cuba became a factor of its progress. 

When the news of the detention of Ferdinand VII in 
captivity by Napoleon was officially brought to Havana in 
July 1808, the colonists, without distinction of party, refused 
to recognize the government of Joseph Bonaparte, and de- 
termined to maintain the island under the sovereignty of the 
deposed king and to support the Captain-General, Somerue- 
los, in defending it against the usurper. The Spanish pro- 
visional government of the Junta of Seville was recognized 
as representing the royal authority, and war was declared 
against Napoleon. The divisions and distinctions between 
the Cubans and Peninsulars, which at various periods, espe- 
cially before the administration of Las Casas, had become 
more or less manifest, were lost sight of at this time, and 
the colonists strove by every means, through contributions 
of men, material, and money, to aid their struggling coun- 
trymen in the Peninsula. 

The Junta of Seville proclaimed equal rights for all 


Spaniards, both at home and in the colonies, and the expec- 
tations of the latter, of obtaining the benefits of the freedom 
which they saw so effectively exemplified in the new con- 
federation of the United States, were raised to the highest 
pitch. But, unfortunately, the majority of the thirty-four 
members of the Junta represented commercial interests 
which were too closely identified with colonial monopolies 
to permit of a just consideration being given to colonial 
rights, and the hopes of the Spanish-American colonies were 
sorely disappointed. In Cuba, the crisis was passed by the 
authorities assuming the responsibility of modifying the 
orders of the home government and of freeing the colony 
from the restrictions put upon its commerce under foreign 
flags. But the result on the continent was that the standard 
of rebellion was raised in Buenos Ayres in 1809, carried 
northward to Peru the same year, taken up by Bolivar in 
Venezuela in 1810, and thus began a war of independence 
which eventually, after twelve years of spasmodic resistance 
by the Spanish government, ended in the loss by Spain of 
all its continental American colonies. During these years 
the Spanish adherents whom the various revolutions forced 
out from South America and Mexico took refuge in Cuba, 
thus considerably augmenting the white population of the 
colonies. The concentration in Cuba of these Spanish 
loyalists had naturally a positive influence on its subsequent 
political development, and contributed to the success of the 
reaction which finally, in Cuba as well as in Spain, followed 
the Bourbon restoration after Napoleon's fall. 

Coincident with the outbreak of the South American 
revolutions came the capture of Seville by the French in 


1810, and the Junta, before retiring to Cadiz, convoked a 
Constituent Assembly to frame a new constitution for the 
Spanish monarchy. To this assembly the colonies were 
invited to send representatives, but the reduced proportion 
of the representation conceded to them caused general dis- 
satisfaction and additional discord. Three Cuban deputies 
were sent to the assembly, which met on the island of Leon, 
at Cadiz, September 1810, and after long deliberations in 
the midst of the turbulence of war a new constitution was 
formulated in 1812. This constitution was framed on the 
French model of 1793, but it was the expression of only a 
part of the Spanish people, the liberal and radical elements 
which were temporarily in the ascendent. Lacking the 
support of the peasantry and bitterly opposed by the nobles 
and the priests, whose influence was curtailed by its provi- 
sions, the constitution of 1812, far from bringing order out 
of the political chaos of Spanish affairs, became only another 
factor in the prevailing disorganization. 

In the discussions of the assembly which framed this con- 
stitution it was proposed by some of the Spanish leaders that 
slavery should be abolished in Cuba after a term of ten 
years, but the earnest remonstrances against the measure as 
being premature, made by the Cuban deputies and especi- 
ally urged by Francisco Arango y Parreño, prevented the 
measure from being adopted. Rumors of the proposed 
abolition became circulated among the Cuban slave popula- 
tion, and when the defeat of the measure became known 
among them their disappointment found expression in a 
serious rising led by a free negro, José Aponto, which was, 
however, vigorously put down and its leaders executed. 


The promulgation in Cuba of the constitution of 1812, 
which was made in Havana with great public ceremony in 
July of that year, marks a highly important epoch in the 
political history of the island. The subsequent events of 
that history have been traced in full detail by Señor Ca- 
brera, particularly in his twelfth chapter (page 197 seq.), 
and need not here be further considered. A consideration 
of some of the more important developments preceding the 
insurrection of Yara ( 1878 j will complete this cursory out- 
line of Cuban history and carry us to a review of the Ten 
Years' War, which Cabrera, through the exigencies of his 
subject, has omitted. 

Under the governorship of Someruelos, whose adminis- 
tration ended April 1812, the colony made important gains 
in population, partly, indeed, it has been noted, in conse- 
quence of the political changes that took place during his 
term. The census of 1810 figured a population of 600,000, 
a gain of about 328,000 over the census of 1791. The 
number had accordingly more than doubled in twenty years. 
Of the total, 274,000 were whites, 114,000 free blacks, and 
212,000 were slaves. The proportions of the increase were 
45?, 19, and 35s per cent, respectively. 

Someruelos was succeeded by Juan Ruiz de Apodaca; he 
inaugurated the new constitution in Cuba, under which the 
military executive was divested of civil power and the 
latter vested in three intendants responsible to a civil gov- 
ernor resident in Havana. The war of 1812 between the 
United States and Great Britain caused much friction be- 
tween the American and Spanish governments, and Apodaca 
devoted himself to gathering a naval force in Cuba for 


possible emergencies. The British, who were preparing 
for the southern campaign that ended at New Orleans in 
January 1815, were availing themselves of their alliance 
with Spain to utilize the ports of Pensacola and Mobile 
for their preparations and as harbors for their fleets. 
Tecumseh, who had been sent from Michigan to stir up the 
southern Indians to take part in the war, had succeeded in 
his errand, and at Pensacola the Indians were supplied with 
arms and munitions. The United States claimed Mobile as 
belonging to its newly acquired territory of Louisiana, and 
fearing lest that point, which was being held by a Spanish 
garrison, might also become a base of supply for the Indians, 
a force of Americans under General Wilkinson moved upon 
it and captured the town and garrison in April 1813. The 
garrison was allowed to retire to Pensacola, and the incident 
might well have led to further hostilities but for the dis- 
organization of the Spanish government, the defeat of the 
English at New Orleans, and the end of the war. 

The Peninsular struggle was ended through the crushing 
defeat of the French at Leipsic, October 1813; Napoleon 
was compelled to release the Spanish King, and in March' 
1814, Ferdinand VII returned to Madrid and to his throne. 
He was a typical Bourbon ; in his four years of luxurious 
captivity, while his country was being racked with convul- 
sions, he had learned nothing but a more refined hypocrisy 
and forgotten nothing but his promises to his people. His 
first act was to abrogate the Constitution ; his next to dissolve 
the Cortes, and his further efforts were given to restoring 
the old absolutism in all its mediaeval rigor. The liberal 
party was ruthlessly suppressed, its leaders imprisoned or 


driven out of the country, and soon the new despotism was 
translated to Cuba. In July 1814, Apodaca received orders 
to reinaugúrate the anclen regime in the colony, and although 
the formality of turning back the hand on the dial of time 
was duly and publicly performed, the momentum of liberal 
progress in the colony was not so easily arrested. The re- 
action was official and superficial ; the old order of things 
could not possibly be completely restored, and many of the 
reforms effected under the constitution remained practically 
in force after its abrogation. 

The administration of José Cienfuegos, who succeeded 
Apodaca in July 1816, was signalized by the agitation for 
the suppression of the Spanish slave trade in 1817, the con- 
cession to the colony of unrestricted foreign trade in 1818, 
and the cession of Florida to the United States in 1819. 

The deportation of African negroes into slavery, which 
had been interdicted to their respective subjects by Den- 
mark in 1792, by England and the United States in 1807, 
by Sweden in 1813, and by Holland and France in 1814, 
was still being carried on by Spain and Portugal when the 
Restoration was accomplished. England having been the 
main factor in saving Spain and Portugal from Napoleon's 
grasp, the English government utilized its sway in the 
Iberian peninsular to bring about the suppression of the 
Spanish and Portugese slave trade ; to this end the nego- 
tiations, which had been going on since 1814, were con- 
cluded by a treaty at Madrid in 1817, by which the impor- 
tation of negro slaves into the Spanish West Indies was 
made illegal after 1820. Spain received £400,000 from 
England in compensation for the loss of revenue from this 


trade and a few years later the English paid Portugal 
£300,000 for a like concession. This measure was violently 
opposed in Cuba, not so much by the people generally nor 
even by the planters, whose human chattels seemed likely to 
appreciate in value through it, but by the trading interests 
involved, and for many years after the interdiction of the 
traffic cargoes of African negroes continued to be smuggled 
into the colony. 

To compensate Cuba for such loss of commerce as would 
result from the suppression of the slave trade, and as a 
measure of policy with regard to the proposed recovery of 
the revolted colonies on the continent, the Spanish govern- 
ment in 1818 opened the ports of Cuba to unrestricted foreign 
commerce. This concession was obtained largely through 
the persistent efforts of the eminent Cuban statesman, Fran- 
cisco Arango, who had succeeded in gaining the confidence of 
Ferdinand VII and whose representations were strengthened 
by the influence of the English government. At the same 
time the former policy of restricting emigration to the island 
was reversed, and special inducements in the way of free 
passage and homestead possessions were offered to Spanish 
emigrants with a view to increasing the white population of 
the island. In general, the Bourbon Restoration, which in 
Spain manifested itself in a most violent reaction, was in 
the West Indies greatly tempered by foreign influences, and 
especially by the successful revolutions on the Continent. 

The progress of the latter became a factor in the cession 

of Florida to the United States. The hold of Spain on that 

territory had always been but slight, and after the departure 

of the English in 1815 revolutionary refugees from Mexico 



and Venezuela, together with a number of foreign adven- 
turers, gained a foothold in the province. On the other 
hand, the Florida Indians, under the protection of the 
Spaniards, afforded an asylum to the fugitive slaves of the 
Georgia and Carolina planters. The latter, in common with 
all the slave-holding interests of the Union, were clamorous 
for the occupation of the Spanish territory, and Spain, re- 
cognizing the futility of attempting to hold the province, 
ceded it to the United States by treaty in February 1819, 
in consideration of the American government settling with 
its citizens their sundry claims for damages in Cuba and 
other Spanish jurisdictions up to that date. 

In August 1819, Juan Manuel Cajigal succeeded Cien- 
fuegos as Captain-General of the island. The latter had 
successfully exerted himself to further the general interests 
of the colony, and had effectively utilized the naval forces, 
organized by his predecessor and strengthened by himself, 
in an active pursuit and repression of the corsairs who 
preyed on the colonial commerce. These freebooters carried 
on their depredations under commissions from the new South 
American and Mexican republics, which Spain was still 
fighting to subdue, and it was only after the opening of the 
Cuban ports to foreign commerce that these semi-piratical 
privateers were generally suppressed. 

Cajigal was sent to Cuba commissioned to direct a renewal 
of the struggle against the continental republics, and to that 
end a considerable reinforcement of troops was gathered at 
Cadiz for shipment to Cuba and thence to the continent. 
The soldiers were ill-content with their mission, the people 
were ill- content with the government, and the general dis- 


content had given rise to secret societies, in which both ele- 
ments of the population were combined. On January 1, 
1820, the standard of revolt was raised among the troops by 
two of their officers, Riego and Quiroga, the constitution of 
1812 was proclaimed, and the movement quickly spread 
over the country. The king and his ministers attempted 
to suppress the revolt, but their troops gave way before the 
insurgents, and in March the king accepted the constitution. 
The nobles and the priests were again set back, the liberals 
took the reigns of power, the Cortes assembled in July, but 
unfortunately the country was yet far from ready for self- 
government, and the liberals could not agree on a perma- 
nent constitution. The discord was fomented by the king 
and his party, the bigoted peasantry was incited to insur- 
rection; but notwithstanding all this, by 1822 the liberal 
ministry, with Riego as president of the Cortes, was gradu- 
ally making headway towards order. 

The re-establishment in Cuba of the constitution of 1812 
was not so unanimously effected as had been its first procla- 
mation. When the news of the acceptance of the constitu- 
tion by the king reached Havana, the new Captain-General, 
Cajigal, attempted to delay action, but was overborne by 
the garrison of the city, a part of which at once pronounced 
for the changed order of affairs. The citizens joined with 
these troops and proclaimed the constitution ; another por- 
tion of the garrison held out for absolutism, but the conflict 
thus threatened was happily averted through the discretion 
of the General, who gave way to the popular impulse (April 
16, 1820). The political prisoners in the Cabana fortress 
were liberated,, the civil organization as it had stood under 


the former regime of the constitution was re-established 
throughout the colony, and deputies to the Cortes were 
elected by the various municipalities. 

In March 1821 Nicolas de Mahy was sent out as successor 
to Cajigal. He was a man of advanced years and though 
of a liberal temperament was unprepared for the tumultu- 
ous conditions which now prevailed in Cuba, a result of the 
disturbances in Spain on the one hand and the successful 
revolutions in Spanish- America on the other. The liberal 
movement in Cuba was taking a form which led him to mis- 
trust the consequences and he strove to restrain its progress. 
His efforts were, however, cut short by his death, July 1822, 
a year after his accession ; but his policy of restriction was 
continued with increasing rigor by his subordinate, Sebastian 
Kindelan, who retained the command until May 1823. 
Both Mahy and he strove to reunite the military and civil 
power in the hands of the Captain-General, in contravention 
of the liberal constitution, and aroused intense antagonism 
between the Spanish troops, which were under their imme- 
diate command, and the local militia which, in the main, 
supported the municipalities. 

Secret societies, some of them under the form of Free- 
masonry, others like the Italian Carbonari, which were being 
made the instruments of social reorganization in Western 
Europe after the Napoleonic period, had rapidly taken root 
in Cuba. The two elements of the population, the zealous 
supporters of the liberal constitution, mostly native Cubans, 
on the one hand, and the adherents of absolutism and the 
church on the other, were gathering in opposing organiza- 
tions. The latter joined with the commercial interests which 


had been injuriously affected by the free opening of the 
Cuban ports in a movement for the repeal of that measure, 
and from this time dates the division of the people into two 
bitterly contending parties, the Cubans and the Spaniards. 
The former included in its ranks all the more radical as well 
as the moderate liberal members of the community, while 
the latter comprised the beneficiaries of the former monopo- 
lies and the conservative and reactionary elements which, 
under the policy of the Governor Generals, naturally crys- 
tallized around the officials of the government and their 
coadjutors in the church. 

While the Captain-Generals, who were governing Cuba 
under the re-established Spanish constitution, were busy in 
preventing the colony from following the example of the 
continental provinces, the constitution itself was broken down 
in Spain by a French army under behest of the Holy Alli- 
ance. That pious compact had been made in Paris, after 
Waterloo, (September 1815,) between Russia, Austria and 
Prussia for the promotion of religion, the establishment of 
peace and the maintenance of the existing dynasties, and its 
main object was now found to be threatened by the success 
of a popular movement in Spain. So a Congress was called 
together at Verona (October 1822) and there it was deter- 
mined, in spite of the protest of England, to suppress the con- 
stitutional government in Spain by force of arms. France 
was now the servant of the northern autocrats and was 
called upon to do their bidding. Bourbon though, he was, 
Louis XVIII was a moderate ruler, himself reigning under 
a constitution, but he had to take up the task of re-estab- 
lishing absolutism in Spain. The French armies were sent 


on the errand (April 1823) and the work was effectively 
done. The Spanish constitution was abrogated, Ferdinand 
VII ruled absolutely and soon Cuba felt the weight of the 
renewed despotism. 

While the French armies were on their way to Madrid to 
put an end to the constitutional regime in Spain, Marshal 
Francisco Dionisio Vives was on his way to Havana intent 
on saving Cuba from all possible dangers of a liberal govern- 
ment. He began his work May 1823 and soon succeeded 
in reproducing in Cuba the discord that was then prevalent 
in Spain. Resistence to the new absolutism was attempted 
by a secret association known as the ''Soles de Bolivar, " but 
the project of this rebellion was discovered and the plans of 
its leaders, which had in view the establishment of a Cuban 
republic, were frustrated. The rising was to take place 
simultaneously in several cities of the island on August 
16, 1823, but on that day its principal leader, José Fran- 
cisco Lemus, and a number of his lieutenants were arrested 
and imprisoned. Others of the conspirators escaped from 
the island, while of those who were taken some were de- 
ported and others found means of escaping from prison and 
reaching the main land. 

The formal proclamation of the restored absolutism in 
Cuba followed close upon the final crushing out of popular 
resistance in Spain, October 1823. The King now set about 
to carry out the plan of the Holy Alliance, which was to 
make an arsenal of Cuba whence to resubjugate the newly 
established Spanish-American republics. This project, how- 
ever, was broken up by the intervention of the United States, 
whose opposition to the undertaking was formulated by 


President Monroe in his famous message to Congress, De- 
cember 1823. This opposition was furthermore strengthened 
by England, which now proceeded to back up its protest 
against the work of the Holy Alliance in Spain by recog- 
nizing, in 1824, the independence of the Spanish- American 
republics as had already been done by the United States. 

These general commotions had their natural reaction in 
Cuba. The antagonism between the Cuban people and the 
government became embittered to an extreme and the dis- 
cord extended to the military. Various risings were at- 
tempted during 1824, but they were insufficiently organized 
and all of them failed to spread. They sufficed, however, to 
place the Spaniards on their guard ; the troops intended for 
the renewal of the struggle on the Continent were kept in 
Cuba, especially in view of the possible outcome of a Con- 
gress of the American Republics which the South American 
states had now proposed. This Congress, which was pro- 
jected on the basis of Monroe's declaration of 1823, was to 
meet at Panama in 1826 to confer regarding the mutual in- 
terests of the American Republics in view of a possible Eu- 
ropean aggression. The United States had naturally been 
invited to participate in the proposed conference and Presi- 
dent John Quincy Adams in his first message (December 
1825) informed Congress that the invitation had been ac- 
cepted and that commissioners would be appointed. But 
the representatives of the slave states saw in this convocation 
a danger to the peculiar institution which they so zealously 
cherished. The Spanish- American republics had each of 
them abolished slavery on attaining independence and the 
Panama Congress was believed to be a stepping-stone to a 


like independence and abolition in Cuba. The debate in 
the Senate made it clear that between independent Cuba 
without slavery and Spanish Cuba with slavery the slave 
holding States would prefer the latter, while on the other 
hand the annexation of the island with slavery would arouse 
antagonism at the North. The nomination of the commis- 
sioners was finally confirmed, but with closely restricted 
functions, and the attitude of the United States resulted 
in depriving the Congress of all influence or result. On 
this account furthermore, a proposed invasion of Cuba by 
Mexico and Columbia, under the lead of Simon Bolivar, 
planned and organized by fugitive Cubans in those coun- 
tries (1826) was also given up, and by tacit understanding 
generally, Cuba and Porto Rico were abandoned by the 
American continental governments to the undisputed pos- 
session of Spain. The latter took advantage of the situa- 
tion to consolidate its power in the islands and with a 
view to repressing the liberal elements of the population, 
as well as to proceed more effectively against the opponents 
of the government, there was created, March 1825, a Per- 
manent Military Executive Commission which was empow- 
ered to try political prisoners according to the articles of 
war, and finally, by royal decree of May 28 of the same 
year, the Captain- General of Cuba was clothed with all the 
powers and authority of martial law.* 

The failure of repeated attempts at resistance to the domi- 
nant absolutism did not deter a number of zealous patriots 
from concerting further movements of a like character. The 

* See author's appendix I, page 277. 


exiles in Columbia and Mexico formed in 1827-29 a secret 
society called the "Black Eagle," which was organized to 
start another revolution on the island. The headquarters 
of the conspiracy were in Mexico and its ramifications ex- 
tended through many of the Cuban towns and cities. But 
the anti-slavery agitation had now become an element of 
discord and complication in every movement of this kind, 
and the opposition of the slave-holding interests in Cuba and 
in the United States rendered this extensive conspiracy abor- 
tive from the start. The Spanish government had no diffi- 
culty in ferreting out the conspirators, and the military com- 
missions made short work of their trials. Numbers of them 
were comdemned to death and others to deportation (1830- 
31), but Vives was far-sighted enough to refrain from con- 
summating the martyrdom of these unsuccessful patriots and 
their sentences were mitigated in every instance. 

After the fiasco of the Panama Congress Vives organ- 
ized a military expedition against Mexico with a view to a 
possible overturn of its government and the eventful re- 
covery of the country for the Spanish crown. She Spanish 
forces, which consisted of 3,500 men, landed at Tampico, 
August 1828, expecting to be augmented by accessions 
from the Mexicans. This, however, proved a fallacious 
hope. The Spanish forces were hemmed in by the Mexican 
troops and what was left of them surrendered their arms 
on condition of being permitted to return to Havana, where 
the remnant arrived in March 1829. 

The collapse of this undertaking on the one hand and the 
suppression of the Black Eagle conspiracy on the other left 
Vives to turn his attention to a reorganization of the colo- 


nial government and to its civil administration. He dis- 
played unusual capacity in both directions and used his ab- 
solute authority with commendable discretion. His ability 
and .moderation had the effect of hiding the fatal defects of 
the system itself and the apparent success of his administra- 
tion resulted in riveting the system on the Cuban people. 

The delegation of absolute power to the Govenor of Cuba, 
originally accorded to Vives under the extraordinary cir- 
cumstances of his time, was continued to his successors 
regardless of the fact that similar contingencies no longer 
existed. The dictatorship of the Captain- General accord- 
ingly became the fundamental basis of the colonial govern- 
ment, and notwithstanding that the home government 
thereafter underwent numerous vicissitudes of absolute and 
constitutional government, those changes were no longer to 
have their due effect on the island. From 1825 practically 
to the present time the Captain- General of Cuba has con- 
tinued to be a military dictator, enacting a despotism harsh- 
er or milder according as it has been tempered by the fear 
of consequences or by the character, capacity and tempera- 
ment of the despot. Vives, the first of the line, used his 
powers with marked discretion and with an inclination to 
govern according to the common law. But many of his succes- 
sors were far less wise and temperate and they stretched 
their powers to the extreme, frequently causing by their ir- 
responsible misrule the very ebullitions of popular unrest 
which they were commissioned to repress. 

Under Mariano Ricafort, who succeeded Vives in May 
1832, a definite beginning was made of the policy of utilizing 
the Cuban colonial administration as a feeding-ground for 


Spanish politicians. The absolutism which Vives had sedu- 
lously retained in his own hands was permitted by Rica- 
fort to percolate to the minor officials of the government, 
and the venality and corruption which are inseperable from 
such a system now became grossly manifest. 

In 1833 the wretched reign of Ferdinand VII was 
terminated by his death; his infant daughter, Isabella, was 
proclaimed queen under the regency of her mother, Cris- 
tina; the king's brothers, Carlos and Francisco, who had 
protested against the abolition of the Salic law by the 
" Pragmatic Saction" of 1829, took up arms against the 
regency and began the Carlist wars. The queen regent 
turned to the Spanish liberals for help; they demanded and 
obtained a constitutional government under a decree known 
as the Estatuó Real, which revived the Cortes and put an 
end to absolutism in Spain. But this did not avail for 
Cuba; there absolutism was continued; the constitution 
was indeed proclaimed and elections to the Cortes were 
ordered, but the absolute power of the Captain- General was 
confirmed and the military commissions were reinforced. 

In June 1834 Ricafort was succeeded by General Miguel 
Tacon, a survivor of the colonial wars in South America. 
The application in Cuba of a liberal regime, such as was 
now dominant in Spain, might have closed the gap between 
the Cubans and the Spaniards, but instead of bridging the 
cleft by a policy of conciliation, Tacon widened it into a 
chasm by the most arbitrary exercise of his unlimited powers 
and a ruthless proscription of all who opposed his will. 

In 1836 the Spanish liberals succeeded in extorting from 
the Queen Regent the re-establishment of the constitution of 


1812, but so far from extending its benefits to Cuba the 
Spanish Cortes in 1837 resolved, notwithstanding the protest 
of the Cuban deputies, to no longer accord parliamentary 
representation to the colonies. Tacon used his absolute 
authority to reverse the action of his subordinate, General 
Lorenzo, who had proclaimed the renewed constitution in 
Santiago de Cuba, and to deport him to Spain, whence he had 
but a few months before been commissioned to his post by the 
liberal ministry. The latter, notwithstanding the absurd 
inconsistency of their position, confirmed Tacon's arbitrary 
proceeding and the Cortes ignored the far-reaching import 
of the occasion. Thus the hopes of the Cubans of sharing in 
the political amelioration of the Peninsula were ruthlessly 
dashed to the ground. 

Tacon was left for four years to enact his unbridled 
despotism in the island and only after his excesses became 
generally notorious did Spanish public opinion force his 
recall in 1838. He had extended the exercise of dicta- 
torial authority into the remotest branches of the colonial 
administration; under his assiduous cultivation absolutism 
flowered into the fullest bloom and the field of Cuban poli- 
tics was sown broadcast with the seed that subsequently 
ripened into repeated harvests of disaster. 

The political developments following the time of Tacon 
have been fully treated by Señor Cabrera; the lamentable 
effects of the autocratic system and the baneful influences 
that have grown around it form the theme of his work in 
general, and the present appendix may accordingly be com- 
pleted by a cursory review of the extraneous influences 
which have affected Cuba in the meantime and a brief sum- 


mary of the several revolutionary uprisings which have pre- 
ceeded the struggle now in progress. 

The "period of conspiracies" that began in Cuba with 
Tacon's administration reflected more or less definitely simi- 
lar conditions in the home country. Political disorganiza- 
tion was rife both in Spain and in its colonies, and in both 
the modern liberalizing tendency was attempted to be re- 
strained by reactionary expedients. In Cuba these condi- 
tions were accentuated by the rapid progress of its material 
development and largely influenced by the proximity of the 
United States and the increasing intercourse of the colony 
with the republic. 

The tentative considerations regarding the annexation of 
Cuba to the United States, which had been incident to the 
discussion of the proposed Congress of Panama in 1825, 
gradually became defined as the pro- slavery party in the 
United States became more aggressive. In the political 
agitation which led to the annexation of Texas (1845), the 
proposition to acquire Cuba by purchase or otherwise was 
widely discussed in the United States, and during the Mex- 
ican war in 1846 a popular movement was started in the 
Southern States to the same end. In 1848, after the con- 
clusion of the war with Mexico and in view of the possible 
complications resulting from the wide-spread revolutionary 
movements in Europe during that year, President Polk pro- 
posed negotiations to the Spanish government through the 
American minister in Madrid for the acquisition of Cuba 
by purchase. The growth of the anti-slavery sentiment in 
the United States put an end to that project, apart from 
the refusal of Spain to enter into the proposed negotiations* 


Meanwhile the Cuban liberals had turned to the United 
States whence to organize a revolutionary movement in the 
island. In May 1847 Narciso Lopez and others, who had 
formed a conspiracy for a rising in central Cuba, were de- 
tected and they fled to the United States. In the following 
year an association of Cuban fugitives was formed in New 
York under the leadership of Lopez, and in 1849 a military 
expedition was organized which was prevented from sailing 
by the United States government. This, however, was re- 
newed the following year (1850) and, mustering his forces 
outside the United States, Lopez succeeded in landing 
(May 19) at Cardenas with 600 men. After taking the 
town Lopez found that the preparations for the extension of 
the uprising had been frustrated and he re-embarked for 
the purpose of landing at another point on the island. On 
leaving the harbor his vessel grounded, and was floated 
only after throwing overboard the major portion of the 
military equipment. At this juncture a Spanish war ves- 
sel was sighted and only the greater speed of the lighter 
steamer saved the expedition from capture. Lopez and his 
men landed at Key West and there disbanded. 

The risings concerted in the interior in connection with 
this expedition took place and continued sporadically into 
the following year. To strengthen this movement and to 
extend the insurrection Lopez undertook another expedition, 
and proceeding from New Orleans he landed near Bahia 
Honda, some 30 miles west of Havana, August 12, 1851, 
with about 450 men. But he was at once opposed by a 
large force of his enemies ; his lieutenant, Col. Crittenden 
of Kentucky, with 150 men, was cut off from the main 


body of the invaders and after a sanguinary fight was com- 
pelled to surrender. Lopez's remaining force was sur- 
rounded and cut off from their supplies and from all aid by 
the islanders ; they held their ground until a tropical storm 
swept away their remaining ammunition, when they scat- 
tered into the woods and all of them were either killed or 
captured. Lopez and some 50 others were taken to Ha- 
vana ; the latter were shot and Lopez was garroted. 

The disastrous failure of this expedition did not prevent 
another being undertaken two years later. This was con- 
certed in Cuba in conjunction with a movement headed by 
General Quitman, of Mississippi; extensive enlistments of 
men, collections of money and equipment of vessels were 
undertaken, but the United States government interfered 
and the leaders of the movement in Cuba were discovered, 
imprisoned and several of them eventually shot. 

In 1854 certain regulations decreed by Captain-General 
Pezuela for the manumission of slaves of advanced years 
caused a general agitation in the Southern States of the 
Union as being a menace to the institution of slavery. 
The strain resulting from this political antagonism was 
increased by the detention in Havana of the steamer 
"Black Warrior" under a charge of violating the Cuban 
custom regulations, by the search of several American 
vessels on the high seas by Spanish cruisers and by the 
arrest of American citizens in Cuba on various formal 
charges. These occurrences threatened for a time to lead to 
a war between the United States and Spain, the contention 
going so far as to elicit the so-called "Ostend Manifesto" 
from the American ministers to England, France and 


Spain. Therein it was declared that the possession of 
Cuba by a foreign power was a menace to the peace of the 
United States, and it was proposed that Spain be offered 
the alternative of taking 200 million dollars for her sover- 
eignty over the island or having it taken from her by 
force. The removal of Pezuela and the reappointment of 
José Concha to the post of Captain -General of Cuba served 
to allay the excitement and to maintain peace. When 
James Buchanan, who as American minister to England 
had signed the Ostend Manifesto in 1854, was elected 
President of the United States in 1856, the project loomed 
into renewed importance, but was lost sight of in the politi- 
cal agitations that culminated in the Civil War. 

These various events had their inevitable echoes in Cuba; 
the colonists naturally hung upon them their hopes of a re- 
lease from the oppressive regime of the home country, and 
each successive disappointment was marked by another im- 
potent struggle to throw off their yoke. Concha was suc- 
ceeded in 1857 by Francisco Lersundi, but the latter' s rule 
was so immoderate that he was again replaced by Concha 
in 1858. 

For a time Cuba became quiescent, but with repeated 
additions to the burden of taxation imposed by the Spanish 
government the discontent of the people constantly in- 
creased. The colonial commerce with the home country 
was subjected to a domestic tariff* regulation, aud that with 
foreign countries, especially with the United States, was 
greatly restricted by almost prohibitory duties. The ma- 
terial development of the island was hampered by taxing 
its agricultural products a tithe of their value, by the 


imposition of burdensome restrictions and taxes on the 
transfer of landed property, and still further by a syste- 
matic restraint of white immigration. The effects of these 
ill-advised measures were minimized during the period of the 
American civil war by the moderating sway of two able 
and liberal minded governors, Francisco Serrano and Do- 
mingo Dulce, who ruled successively from 1860 to 1865. 
The tact and discretion of the former did much to allay 
the irritation caused in the Northern States by the recogni- 
tion of belligerency which was accorded by Spain to the 
Southern forces over a month before the first battle of the 
war. This irritation was increased by the allied expedition 
against Mexico in 1861, in which Spain took part with 
England and France, but the withdrawal of the two former 
powers in 1862 concentrated American opposition against 
Napoleon III, who continued the plans of conquest and 
imperialism which ended w T ith the death of Maximilian in 

The close of the American Civil War, the complete 
abolition of slavery in the United States and the re-estab- 
lishment of the power of the Republic strengthened the 
liberal sentiment in Cuba and gave rise to new T movements 
for its expression. The contention of the Cubans was so 
far effective that one of the liberal Spanish cabinets that 
alternated with their opponents in carrying on the govern- 
ment of Isabella II accepted a project for a Commission of 
Inquiry to consider and devise reforms in the Cuban 
administration. The project was duly formulated under 
royal decree, November 25, 1865, but had already been 


emasculated by its opponents. Spanish statesmen seemed 
incapable of recognizing the needs of the occasion, and the 
influences controlling the government were strong enough 
to render the entire movement abortive from its start. The 
Commissioners were elected under regulations calculated 
to give the opponents of reform a majority of their num- 
ber, aud the Commission was furthermore packed by the 
appointment of half its membership by the government 
itself. Instead of a general plan of colonial reform being 
considered, the Commission restricted itself to the proposal 
of some comparatively unimportant regulations of slave 
labor, and declined to entertain the propositions of the 
Cuban delegates. The latter demanded a constitutional - 
system in place of the autocracy of the Captain- General, 
freedom of the press, the right of petition, cessation of the 
exclusion of Cubans from public office, unrestricted indus- 
trial liberty, abolition of restrictions on the transfer of 
landed property, the right of assembly and of association, 
representation in the Cortes and local self-government. 
But the home-government refused to consider any of 
these proposals, least of all the restriction of the absolute 
power of the Captain-General and colonial representation in 
the Cortes. 

Not even the moderate demands of the Cuban deputies 
for a gradual abolition of slavery were more than considered 
and temporized with. Nothing indeed was done, except to 
permit Lersundi, who had meanwhile succeeded Dulce, to 
tighten the screws on the Reformists in Cuba, and finally, 
in June 1868, to impose an additional 10 per cent, on the 
direct taxes of the island. 


The disappointment that had resulted from the failure of 
the Commission of Inquiry had sufficed to start anew a 
secret movement towards insurrection, and this, promoted by 
Lersundi's purblind policy and by the increase of the di- 
rect taxes, had spread extensively, especially in the central 
and southern provinces. There the movement was fast rip- 
ening to fruition, when, in September 1868, the news of the 
revolution in Spain and the expulsion of Isabella II was 
received. But the change at home brought none on the 
island. Lersundi continued in his place and the Cubans 
were left hopeless of relief. In the eastern provinces of the 
island plans for an insurrection were matured by Francisco 
V. Aguilera, Manuel A. Aguilera and Francisco M. Osorio 
at Bayamo, Carlos M. Céspedes in Manzanillo, Belisario 
Alvarez in Holguin, Vicente Garcia at Las Tunas, Donato 
Marmol in Jiguani and Manuel Fernandez in Santiago. 

These leaders concerted a simultaneous rising for Octo- 
ber 14, but the plan being discovered, the insurrection was 
started October 10 on the plantation of Yara by Céspedes at 
the head of 1 40 men. A Cuban republic was proclaimed 
and Céspedes was quickly supported by his confederates 
from the surrounding districts. In a few weeks the leaders 
had about them over 10,000 men, resolute indeed, but inad- 
equately armed and equipped. A Declaration of Indepen- 
dence was promulgated and a convention called to frame a 
constitution. The troops which the government sent against 
the rebels were repulsed, and in the winter 1868-69 the 
struggle centered along the railway between Nuevitas and 
Puerto Principe, the Cubans remaining masters of the 
country. Under the lead of Manuel Quesada, a guerilla 


campaign followed, which resulted in the capture by the 
Cubans of one after another of the important towns of the 
interior. In this campaign the Spanish forces, stated by 
the Spanish colonial minister Becerra as including 40,000 
regulars and 70,000 volunteers, were checked and beaten 
off by a Cuban force of not over 26,000 men, and only the 
Spanish fleet prevented the insurgents from capturing and 
holding the seaports. The Spanish ministry now hastened 
to supersede Lersundi with the former Captain- General 
Dulce, upon whose good standing with the Cuban people 
they counted to bring about a cessation of hostilities. Dulce 
issued a proclamation in 1869, offering general amnesty and 
promising consideration of grievances on the restoration of 
order, but the Cuban leaders were now bent on indepen- 
dence and refused to entertain the proposals. On February 
26 the republican assembly of Las Villas declared for the 
immediate abolition of slavery and this was followed by a 
rising in that district. Here the Cubans were led by a 
Polander, named Rolpff, who succeeded in clearing the 
province of the Spanish forces and holding them in check. 

On April 10 a Constituent Assembly of Cuban represen- 
tatives, mainly from the Eastern and Middle provinces, met 
at Guaimaro in Central Cuba; this convention framed a 
constitution and elected Céspedes as President and Manuel 
Quesada as Military Commander. At this time the succes- 
sive encounters between the Cubans and the Spaniards 
invariably resulted in the worsting of the latter. 

In May two expeditions from the United States, one un- 
der Rafael Quesada and the other under Col. Thomas 
Jordan, formerly of the Confederate army, landed supplies 


of arms and ammunition. But these continued to be en- 
tirely inadequate for the occasion. The Spanish navy, 
reinforced by some 30 light draft vessels purchased in the 
United States and converted into gunboats, patrolled the 
coast behind the barrier of coral islands, and made the 
landing of "filibustering" expeditions hazardous in the 
extreme. The summer of 1870 was utilized by both com- 
batants to reorganize their forces, but the yellow fever made 
great havoc in the ranks of the new troops sent out from 
Spain. In the fall the general movements were renewed, 
and the insurgents continued to gain ground. Jordan, now 
acting as a general officer, succeeded, January 1, 1870, in 
inflicting a severe defeat on a strong Spanish column near 
Guaimaro, and the spring months passed with a continua- 
tion of the Cuban guerilla tactics and the gradual strength- 
ening of their hold on the eastern half of the island. 

Meanwhile the western provinces were being terrorized 
by the Spanish volunteers. These organizations were com- 
posed for the most part of the Spanish adherents among the 
Cuban population, their ranks filled out by enlistments in 
Spain for that purpose, and consisted generally of a battal- 
ion, more or less considerable in numbers, under command 
of a Colonel, the latter frequently of the wealthy slave 
trading aristocracy. Some^ 20,000 of these troops were 
concentrated in Havana and about twice as many more in 
the other towns of the island, all of them acting as "home 
guards." The Havana volunteers became dissatisfied with 
the conduct of the war in the field and manifested their dis- 
content by repeated acts of insubordination. They made 
and unmade their commanding officers according to their 


whim, and practically made themselves masters in the 
cities, and especially in Havana. There, in May 1870, 
they fired repeated volleys into the entrance of a theatre, 
killing and wounding a large number of the people who 
were leaving it after a performance which, it had been 
rumored, was given for the benefit of the insurgent cause. 
Next, while on a street parade, they gutted a café and 
killed a number of people, and finally, June 2, they took it 
upon themselves to arrest Captain- General Dulce as being 
too lenient in his warfare and expedited him away to Spain. 

The Spanish government meekly submitted to this un- 
paralleled outrage, and permitted it to be followed by a 
similar deposition of General Lopez-Pinto, who commanded 
at Matanzas, and by untold excesses of malignant cruelty 
throughout the country. The successor of Dulce, Cabellero 
de Rodas, was a man after their own heart, and he ordered 
the shooting of prisoners of war without stint. He called 
for and obtained extensive reinforcements, assured the 
Spanish cabinet that the insurrection was coming to an end, 
but was invariably worsted in his movements in the field 
and six months after his appointment he urged his resigna- 
tion. He was succeeded, December 1870, by the Count of 
Balmaseda. But the latter likewise failed to turn back 
the tide of the insurrection. Tfre Cubans carried on their 
guerilla warfare, generally with the purpose of capturing 
war material, and they were largely successful. 

The more the war extended in the field, the more grue- 
some became the work of the home guards in the cities. In 
November 1871, 43 boy students in the University of Ha- 
vana were arrested under dictation of the volunteers and 



tried by court-martial on the charge of having scratched the 
glass plate on a cemetery vault containing the remains of a 
volunteer. Through the vigorous defense made by a Spanish 
officer before the Court, the boys were acquitted, but the vol- 
unteers demanded of Balmeseda a new trial before a court 
composed of their own officers. The Captain- General com- 
plied so far as to order a new trial before a court composed 
of 9 volunteer and 5 regular army captains and a major, 
with a colonel as judge-advocate. The court condemned 
eight of the students to death ; thirty-one were sentenced 
to imprisonment and four were acquitted. The next day 
15,000 volunteers paraded to the scene of the execution 
and the condemned boys were shot to death. This terrible 
outrage was execrated throughout the civilized world, but 
the Madrid government supinely cowered under the domi- 
nation of the Havana volunteers. 

The campaign of 1871 had helped the insurgents to large 
stores of ammunition, and that of 1872 was practically a 
repetition of its predecessor. No engagements of moment 
were fought; the Cubans held the interior of the eastern half 
of the island and made excursions towards the coast to re- 
ceive expeditions that succeeded in landing from time to time 
and incursions into the western provinces beyond their 
portion of the territory. The tactics of the insurgents, 
which consisted mainly in harrassing their enemies, eluding 
the larger forces and beating the lesser ones, resulted in 
causing the Spanish troops to suffer terrible losses, not so 
much by the bullet or the machete, as through exposure 
and disease. The war grew more and more rancorous, 
and each side charged the other with the most unheard of 


cruelties. The details of these have never been fully told, 
but that the bitterness of the struggle was directly due to 
the so-called volunteers has been abundantly brought to 

Not all the cruelties directed or permitted by Balmeseda 
sufficed to atone in the eyes of his janissaries for his want of 
success in the field. In September 1872 he was compelled 
to provisionally relinquish his command to Ceballos, and 
afterwards in 1873, definitely to General Pieltan. The 
latter took the command with the view to bringing the war 
to a close by negotiation, quite despairing of quelling the 
rebellion by force of arms, and in the summer of 1873 he 
made repeated but unsuccessful efforts to induce the Cuban 
leaders to accept peace without independence. 

The campaign of 1873 was the climax of the war. In 
the spring the commands of Agramonte in Camagüey, 
Calixto Garcia in the eastern provinces and Maximo Gomez 
in Central Cuba, gained important successes. Through the 
summer the insurgents not only held their ground but 
succeeded in extending their sway, notwithstanding the 
heavy odds against which they were contending. 

On October 31st a Spanish gunboat overhauled and 
captured off the island of Jamaica a steamer named the 
Virginius, which claimed American registry. The Spaniards 
regarded the vessel as a ''filibuster" and their suspicions 
were apparently justified by the number and character of 
the crew. The Virginius was taken to Santiago de Cuba 
where the crew was landed November 1st. On the 4th, three 
Cubans and one American were shot by order of the local 
commander ; on the 7th, thirty-seven more men, including 



Captain Fry, were likewise executed, and on the 8th, twelve 
more shared the same fate. The 102 survivors were in a 
way to being similarly disposed of when the proceedings 
were interrupted by Commander Lorrain, of the British 
sloop- of- war Niobe, and the bloody work was stopped. The 
summary condemnation of the vessel and its crew caused an 
explosion of wrath in the United States, and for a time the 
incident seemed certain to lead to war, but this was averted 
by diplomatic action which resulted in the Virginius and 
the remainder of her crew being surrendered at Bahia 
Honda, December 16, to the United States steamship Juni- 
ata. The latter started to tow her charge to New York, but 
while off Frying Pan Shoals, December 26, the Virginius 
sprung aleak and foundered. 

Pending the negotiations which ended in the surrender of 
the Virginius, Pieltan was succeeded by General Jovellar. 
A man of force and discretion was required to hold down 
the mutinous spirit of the volunteers, and Jovellar proved 
himself the ablest and most competent of the men who had 
thus far had the direction of the war. This change of com- 
manders on the Spanish side was soon followed by a change 
of leaders on the part of the Cubans. The Cuban Con- 
gress that met at Bijagual, December 1873, brought to the 
surface a discord that had for some time been brewing 
among the leaders. A majority of these combined against 
Céspedes and succeeded in deposing him from the Presi- 
dency. They could not, however, agree on a successor 
and the presiding officer of the Congress, Salvador Cisneros, 
Marquis of Santa Lucia, became acting President of the 
Republic. Céspedes retired to San Lorenzo, in Eastern 


Cuba, and there, a few months later, he was suprised by a 
detachment of Spaniards ; he succeeded in escaping mortally 
wounded, and died March 22, 1874. Céspedes was a man 
of exceptional ability, unselfishly devoted to the cause he 
had at heart and possessed in a large measure the confidence 
of his countrymen. His deposition caused wide- spread dis- 
sension in the Cuban ranks and for a time brought the in- 
surrection practically to a standstill. The discord that was 
manifesting itself among the Cubans was, however, equally 
rife among their enemies. The campaign in the field was 
indecisive and Jovellar proceeded to take energetic meas- 
ures to compass the rebellion. He declared the entire 
island in a state of seige, conscripted every able-bodied man 
into the militia and drafted 10 per cent, of the latter for 
field service. But he thereby encountered the angry pro- 
tests of the citizens, and raised a storm of opposition among 
the home guards. Utterly disgusted with his task, Jovellar 
asked to be relieved and was succeeded, August 1874, by one 
of his predecessors, General Concha. The latter brought 
much needed reinforcements and started in for a vigorous 
campaign. In September, at Yarayaba, he defeated a large 
band of the insurgents, but his own forces were so crippled 
in that engagement that he was unable to utilize his victory 
and the campaign remained practically fruitless. 

The war had now lasted six years and the insurrection 
seemed as far from being quelled as at any time during its 
progress. It was clearly demonstrated that the insurgents 
could not, in the absence of a navy, drive the Spaniards 
from the island, but on the other hand the latter were seem- 
ingly unable to do more than hold their enemies at arm's 


length. The cost in life and treasure had been enormous, 
but the end was not yet. 

The Carlist war in Spain during 1874-75 diminished the 
number of recruits that could be spared for Cuba, and in the 
spring of 1875 the decimated Spanish forces were com- 
pelled to fall back before the advance of the insurgents. 
The western provinces of the island were now for the first 
time seriously threatened with invasion, but the weak- 
ened position of the Spaniards was relieved through fatal 
dissensions among the Cuban leaders. Had they at this 
juncture been able to act in unison the outcome of the war 
might have been decided at this time, but the year passed 
without other result than to leave both the Spaniards and 
the Cubans perceptibly weakened by the strife. 

This condition continued to prevail until the autumn of 
1876. The Carlist uprising in Spain had meanwhile been 
subdued and now General Martinez de Campos was sent 
over to end the war in Cuba. Campos had won distinction 
through his having ended the Spanish republic and restored 
the Bourbon dynasty by his proclamation of Alfonso XII 
(December 1874), and also in the campaigns against the 
Carlists in the Basque provinces of the Peninsula and he 
had had experience of Cuban warfare in the earlier years 
of the insurrection. He came with 25,000 veterans of the 
Carlist wars to renew the onset, and started at once to 
deploy his forces for a decisive campaign. But the winter 
of 1876-77 passed without apparent result ; the insurgents, 
though now in diminished numbers, succeeded with their 
guerilla tactics in constantly eluding the larger forces and 
in defeating the minor ones. The spring of the year was 


passing, the hot season was at hand, the Spanish troops were 
again faltering under the inflictions of the climate, and 
Campos sought to end the war by negotiations. In 1877 
Jovellar again took the post of Captain-General, Campos 
devoting himself exclusively to the military operations in 
the field ; these were now mainly determined for strategic 
ends, the fighting having largely ceased through general 
exhaustion. Campos steadfastly kept in view an ending of 
all hostilities through some measure of compromise, and 
early in 1878 an armistice was agreed upon. The insur- 
gent headquarters were then in Camagüey, and there the 
Cuban leaders met to consider overtures of peace from 
General Campos. That meeting appointed a Commission 
of nine members, which, with General Vicente Garcia, who 
had recently succeeded Cisneros as President, met General 
Campos and a number of his officers at the camp of St. 
Augustin, near Zanjón, in the district of Camagüey. The 
conference resulted in the compact known as the peace of 
Zanjón, February 10, 1878. This was virtually a com- 
promise by which the Cubans gave up their contention for 
independence and the Spaniards conceded, in form at least, 
most of the demands made by the Cubans before the Com- 
mission of Inquiry in 1867, and which had meanwhile been 
conceded to Porto Rico.* 

After the pacification of the island Campos returned to 
Madrid and laid before the cabinet of Cánovas de Castillo 
his plans for effectuating by legislative action the reforms in 
the government of Cuba which had been accepted by the 
insurgents as a condition of their laying down their arms. 

* See pages 218, 219. 


But Cánovas was unwilling to lay these proposals before 
the Cortes with his recommendation, and accordingly re- 
signed the ministry March 3, 1879. Campos took his place, 
organized a new cabinet, dissolved the Cortes and appealed 
to the country, obtaining a majority of the new legislature. 
His proposals, however, were only partially supported by 
his colleagues in the cabinet, and this caused a split which 
resulted in Campos resigning his task. Cánovas again took 
the reins of government (December 9, 1879) and the prom- 
ises made at Zanjón were practically ignored. 

The war, like all wars, had cost enormously in life and 
treasure, but as in all wars, the untold misery and ruin of 
the ten years' struggle was greater than that which was re- 
corded. On the side of the Spaniards, as registered in the 
war office at Madrid, over 8,000 officers and more than 
200,000 privates died in battle or in the hospitals in the 
course of the fearful ordeal, while on the part of the Cubans 
the loss of life has been computed to have been fully 50,000 
men. The cost in money aggregated over 300 million dol- 
lars expended by Spain, and not less than as much more 
lost to Cuba by destruction. The worst feature of the 
contest was its intense bitterness ; no quarter was given on 
either side, and prisoners were taken only to be slaughtered, 
the Spanish government refusing throughout to agree to an 

During several stages of the conflict the question of re- 
cognizing the belligerency of the insurgents engaged the 
attention of the United States Congress. President Grant, 
as indicated in his messages of December 1869 and 1875, 
repeatedly offered the good offices of our government for 


the re-establishment of peace on the island, and January 
1876 he proposed to the European powers a joint interven- 
tion in the conflict. No action was, however, finally taken 
by our government, the problems growing out of the re- 
construction of the Southern States crowding foreign affairs 
from the public mind. Several of the South American re- 
publics recognized the Cubans as belligerents and Peru 
recognized their independence. 

One of the results of the insurrection was the hastening 
of the final abolition of slavery. , In 1870, under the so- 
called Moret law, freedom was decreed to every child born 
of a slave mother after July 4th of that year, and further- 
more to such slaves as had helped or would help the Span- 
ish troops against the insurgents. Under the same law 
freedom was given to every slave who was 60 years old on 
the above date, and to all who reached that age thereafter. 
In January 1880, as a partial concession of the proposals 
by Campos as noted above, a further measure was enacted 
by the Cortes providing for the more rapid extinction of 
slavery in Cuba, by virtue of which the institution of negro 
slavery became finally extinct in 1887. 

The current of Cuban affairs following the peace of 
Zanjón, and the failure of the Spanish government to fulfil 
the spirit of that compact, have been graphically narrated 
by our author in the body of this work. The efforts of the 
cultured and patriotic Cubans to maintain their country as 
an integral part of the Spanish monarchy under a form of 
home-rule government have been eloquently set forth by 
Señor Cabrera and the anachronism of the conditions that ex- 
isted when he wrote has been forcibly indicated in his work. 


It was the continuance of these conditions that brought on 
the armed conflict which began February 24, 1895, and 
which has now grown to greater proportions than any which 
has preceded it. It is manifest to every student of modern 
history that this conflict can have no final ending but in 
Autonomy or Independence, and that Cuban independence 
can have no future ; it means simply annexation to the 
American Union. 

L. E. L. 

Philadelphia, March 1896. 


Aborigines, 383. 

Agramonte, General, 424. 

Agüero, Pedro, quoted, 291-293. 

Aguilera, Francisco V., portrait, 142; biography, 346 ; ref., 

Aguilera, Manuel A., 419. 

Albear y Lara, Francisco, portrait, 114 ; biography, 339. 

Albertini, Rafael J)., portrait, 118; biography, 342. 

Alonso y Delgado, José, portrait, 156 ; biography, 347. 

Alvarez Belisario, 419. 

Annexation of Cuba to United States, proposed, 413, 416. 

Apodaca, Juan Ruiz de, Governor, 398. 

Araugo y Parreño, Don F., reference, 49 ; portrait, facing 49 ; 
biography, 311; 397, 401. 

Armas y Carmona Francisco de, portrait, 203 ; biography, 

Armen teros, Juan B., portrait, 77 ; biography, 321. 

Arms, prohibition of, 238 ; license for, note 238, 239. 

Army, cost of, 240,241. 

Autonomist party, 124 ; platform of, 125, 126 ; opposition to, 
130-136 ; organizing committee of, 127 ; executive com- 
mittee (managing board) of, note 135. 

Autonomy (Home Rule), 71, 232, 273, 431. 

Avellaneda, Gertrudis G. de, portrait, facing 257 ; biography, 

Azcárate, Nicolás, portrait, 214 ; biography, 359. 

434 ÍNDEX. 

Bachiller y Morales, Antonio, portrait, 88 ; biography, 325. 

Balmaseda, Count of, Captain-General, 422-424. 

Balmaseda, Francisco J., portrait, 111 ; biography, 329. 

Balmes, quoted, 284-286. 

Beaulieu, Leroy, quoted, 21, 273. 

Belligerency, 429, 430. 

Benítez, Doña Susana, portrait, 267 ; biography, 372. 

Bernal, Calixto, portrait, 214 ; biography, 360. 

Bernal, Guillermo, portrait, 173; biography, 352. 

Betancourt, José R., portrait, 230 ; biography, 363. 

"Black Eagle" Conspiracy, 409. 

"Black Warrior" Incident, 415. 

Bruzón, José, portrait, facing 225 ; biography, 365. 

Bryant, William Cullen, translation of "El Niagara" by, 

Buccaneers, 385, 386. 

Cabellero, José de la Luz, 295, 296 ; portrait, lacing 33 ; biog- 
raphy, 309. 

Cabrera, Raimundo, portrait, facing 17 ; biographical refer- 
ence, prologue, 18, 19. 

Cajigal, Juan Manuel, Captain-General, 402. 

Calcaguo, Francisco, portrait, 111 ; biography, 330. 

Campos, Martinez de, Captain-General, 212, 427-429. 

Camps y Feliú, Colonel Francisco, quoted, 263-266 ; [tor- 
trait, 266; note, 265; ref., 372. 

Cancio, Leopoldo, portrait, 61 ; quoted, 61-69 ; biography, 319. 

Captain-General, extraordinary powers granted to ; royal 
decree, text, 277, 278 ; 408, 410. 

Carbonell, José M., portrait, 219; biography, 362. 

Castro, Rafael F. de, portrait, 215 ; biography, 360. 

Céspedes, Carlos Manuel de, portrait, 123; biography, 343 ; 
ref., 419, 420, 425,426. 

Charity Asylum, illustration, 247 ; description, 367. 

Charity Theatre, Hauta Clara, illustration, 137 ; description, 

TNDEX. 435 

Chinese in Cuba, 34. 

Cienfuegos, José, Captain-General, 400. 

Circular of Chief of Police on safe-guarding of prisoners, 
text of, 280, 281. 

Cisneros, Gaspar B., portrait, 49 ; biography, 315. 

Cisneros, Salvador, Marquis of Santa Lucia, 425. 

City Hall, Havana, illustration, 179 ; description, 353. 

Clergy, status of, 256-261. 

Climatic conditions, 378, 379. 

College of Santo Angel, illustration, 235 ; description, 365. 

Columbus, Diego, settlement by, 382. 

Columbus, statue of, illustration, 169; description, 352; dis- 
covery by, 381 ; remains of, 390. 

Committee of inquiry on Reforms, 123, 213-217, 417-419. 

Concha, José, Captain-General, 416, 426. 

Congress of Panama, 407, 413. 

Conspiracies, 209, 210, 406, 409, 413. 

Constitution of 1812, 200, 203-206, 397 ; promulgated in Cuba, 
398 ; abrogated, 399 ; re-established, 403 ; finally abro- 
gated, 406. 

Conte, Francisco A., portrait, 53 ; biography, 316. 

Corporal punishment, 24. 

Corsairs, 402. 

Cortes, Cuban Representatives in, 197-233. 

Cortina, José A., portrait, 56 ; biography, 317. 

Creoles, 61. 

Criminals, 72 ; statistics of, 73-74. 

Cuba, political and other divisions, 137, 138 ; area, 137 ; edu- 
cational system, 145-159 ; local government, 179-196 ; 
representation in Cortes, 197-233 ; political constitution, 
206-209; military system of government in, 209, 210; 
general description, 375-381 ; historical review, 381-431. 

Cuban agriculture, 65; industries, 68; literature, 75, 118; 
customs, 139. 

Cuban loyalists, 41, 42; natives (creóles), 61, 62; planters, 
63; peasants, 64; women, 261-266. 

486 INDEX. 

Del Monte, Ricardo, portrait, 52 ; biography, 816. 
Demoralization, political, 253, 254 ; religious, 257 ; social, 

189-144, 261, 262. 
Deportation to the Antilles, prohibited, Royal order, text, 

De Soto, Hernando, Governor, 888. 
Discovery of Cuba, 381, 382. 
Dulce, Domingo, Captain-General, portrait, 212; biography, 

358; ref., 417,418,420,422. 

Economic statistics, 248-252. 

Elections, first, 200 ; tables of recent, 222-229. 

Electoral law of 1877, 219-221. 

Emancipation of negro slaves, 34, 66. 

Escobédo, Nicolás, portrait, 184; biography, 354. 

Espada y Landa, Juan J. D., portrait, facing 161 ; biography, 

Espadero, Nicolás R., portrait, 116; biography, 341. 
Estévez, Marta Abreu de, portrait, facing 145; biography, 

Extraordinary powers of Captain-General, royal decree, 277, 


Fernandez, Manuel, 419. 

Figueroa, Miguel, portrait, 231; biography, 364. 

Filibusters, 421, 424. 

Fomento, Junta de, view, 59; description, 318. 

Fornaris, José, note, 87; portrait, 106; biography, 329. 

Gálvez, José M., portrait, facing 129 ; biography, 342. 

García, José S., portrait, 236; biography, 366. 

Gar ~ ; « Calixto, 424. 

Garcia, Vicente, 419, 428. 

Gássie, Julián, portrait, 123; biography, 344. 

Geography of Cuba, 376. 

Gener, Tomás, portrait, 202 ; biography, 355. 

INDEX. 487 

Gerviuus, spirit of Spanish colonization, quoted, 20. 

Giberga, Eliseo, portrait, 232; biography, 365. 

Gómez, Juan G., portrait, 81; biography, 323. 

Gomez, Maximo, 424. 

González, Doña Aurelia Castillo de, portrait, 263; biography, 

Govín y Torres, Antonio, portrait, facing 193; biography, 

Güell y Renté, José, portrait, 218 ; biography, 362. 
Guitéras, Antonio, portrait, 105; biography, 328. 
Guitéras, Eusebio, portraits, facing 128, 331; biography, 330. 
Guitéras, Pedro, portrait, 113; biography, 338. 
Gutiérrez, Nicolás, portrait, 112; biography, 337. 

Harbor of Cuba, 376. 

Havana, streets, 32 ; buildings, 33 ; inhabitants, 34 ; govern- 
ment, 35, 179, 185, 192, 193 ; harbor of, 35 ; hotels, 38 ; 
culture, 77 ; principal newspapers of, 85, 325 ; relation 
to Cuba, 138, 139 ; early history, 382-384 ; capture by Eng- 
lish, 388 ; conflagration of 1802, 392. 

Heredia, José Maria, portrait, 90 ; biography, 326 ; reference, 
90 ; poem of " El Niagara," by (original and translation), 

Highway robbery, suppression of, 305, 306. 

Holy Alliance, 405-407. 

Hospital of our Lady of Mercies, Havana, illustration, 161 ; 
description, 349. 

Humboldt, Alexander von, quoted, 267. 

Hygiene, section of, 35 ; statistics of same, 141 ; regulation of 
same, 142, 143. 

Immigration of Whites, from San Domingo and Louisiana, 

393 ; from South America and Mexico, 396. 
Industrial statistics, 249, 250. 

Inglaterra, Hotel, Havana, view of, 40; description, 313. 
Instruction, public, reform of, 283. 

438 INDEX. 

Investiture of Captain-General with additional power, royal 
decree, 279. 

Jordan, Col. Thomas, 420, 421. 
Jorrin, José S., portrait, facing 97; biography, 319. 
Jorrin, the Bala (Hall), illustration, 75 ; description, 321. 
Jovellar, Captain -General, 425, 426, 428. 

Judiciary, 169-177; partisanship of, 171; exclusion of Cubans 
from, 172; corruption of, 176. 

Kindelan, Sebastian, Captain-General, 404, 

Labra, Rafael M. de, portrait, facing 209 ; biography, 354. 

Las Casas, Captain-General, 47 ; 389, 390. 

Lawlessness in cities, 236; in the country, 237. 

Lemus, José Francisco, 406. 

Lemus, José Morales, portrait, 213; biography, 359. 

Leon, Néstor Ponce de, portrait, 113 ; biography, 338. 

Lersundi, Francisco, administration of, 124, 416, 418-420. 

Libraries, public and private, 76, 77. 

Local government, 179-196. 

López, General Narciso, portrait, 210; biography, 356, 414, 

Luaces, Joaquín L., portrait, 102; biography, 327. 
Lugareño, El, vide Cisneros, G. B. 

Mahy, Nicolas de, Captain-General, 404. 

Marmol, Donato, 419. 

Medina, Tristan, portrait, 256 ; biography, 370. 

Menocal, Aniceto, portrait, 114 ; biography, 338. 

Merchán, Rafael M., portrait 82 ; biography, 323. 

Milanés, José J., portrait, 101 ; biography, 327. 

Mill, John Htuart, quoted, 27. 

Millet, Gabriel, portrait, 217 ; biography, 361. 

Mineral resources, 380. 

Monopoly of tobacco trade, 387. 

INDEX. 439 

Monroe Doctrine, 407. 

Montoro, Rafael, prologue by, 17 ; portrait, facing 241 ; note, 

255 ; biography, 866. 
Moré, José Eugenio, portrait, 157 ; biography, 348. 
Moreno, F., introduced, 29. 
Morro Castle, view of, 29 ; description, 310, 384. 
Mountain System of Cuba, 377. 
Municipal system, 179-196. 

Napoleon, war against, 895. 

Navarrete y Rornay, Carlos, portrait, 78 ; biography, 321. 

Negro Insurrection under José Aponto, 397. 

Offices and officials, public, 162-164 ; corruption of, 165 ; 

salaries, 166, 167. 
Ortiz, Alberto, portrait, 232 ; biography, 364. 
Osorio, Francisco M., 419. 
Ostend Manifesto, 415, 416. 

Palms, group of, illustration, 271 ; description, 372. 

Papel Periódico, illustrated, 43 ; description, 314. 

Party divisions, 120. 

Peréz, Doña Luisa, portrait, 262 ; biography, 371. 

Pezuela, Captain-General, 415. 

Pieltan, Captain-General, 424. 

Pineiro, Enrique, portrait, 79 ; biography, 322. 

Pintó, Ramón, portrait, 122; biography, 848. 

Placido, (Gabriel de la Concepción Valdés), reference, 101— 

102 ; poem by (original and translation), 103-105. 
Poets and poetry, Cuban, 89-110. 
Poey, Felipe, portrait, 115 ; biography, 340. 
Police service, 240. 
Population, 73, 398. 

Portuoudo, Bernardo, portrait, 217 ; biography, 361. 
Pozos Dulces, Count of, portrait, facing 65 ; biography, 318. 
Prado, Calle de, Havana, view of, 37 ; description, 312. 

440 INDEX. 

Press, journalistic, 43-57 ; mercenary, 61 ; illustration, 85 ; 

description, 325. 
Prisoners slaughtered, 243-245 ; circular of chief of police 

regarding same, 280, 281. 
Public instruction, report on change of plan of, 283. 
Publications, prohibition of certain, royal text, 299. 

Quesada, Manuel, 419, 420. 
Quesada, Rafael, 420. 

Reinoso, Alvaro, portrait, 115 ; biography, 339. 

Religious conditions, 255-261. 

Representation of Cuba in Cortes, 197-233. 

Ricafort, Mariano, Captain-General, 410. 

River System, 377, 378. 

Roloff, insurgent leader, 420. 

Rodas, Cabellero de, Captain-General, 422. 

Rodríguez, José Ignacio, portrait, 81 ; biography, 322. 

Saco, José A., portrait, facing 81, biography, 317. 

Saladrigas, Carlos, portrait, 128; biography, 344. 

Sanguili, Manuel, portrait, 134 ; biography, 345. 

Santa Clara, Count of, Governor, 390. 

Santos, Miguel D., portrait, 257 ; biography, 370. 

Schools in Cuba, 146-159 ; public, 153-155 ; statistics of, 155 ; 
free and private, 158-159. 

Secret societies, 404. 

Seminaries of Havana, 152. 

Separatism, 71. 

Serrano, Francisco, Captain-General, portrait, 211 ; biogra- 
phy, 357 ; ref., 417. 

Settlements, earliest, 382. 

Slaughter of prisoners, 243-245. 

Slave population, augmented, 392, 

Slave trade, 34, 389 ; abolished, 400, 401. 



INDEX. 441 

Slavery introduced, 61, 62, 383; growth of, 384; modified, 

415 ; abolished, 430. 
Smuggliug trade, 387. 
Social evil, 141. 
Sociedad Económica, library of, 76 ; view of same, 75 ; 

history of, 147-156 ; council of, note 156. 
Soil, products of the, 380, 381. 
"Soles de Bolivar," 406. 
Someruelos, Marquis of, Governor, 390, 398. 
Spaniards, political assumption by, 62 ; in business, 66 ; in 

office, 67 ; in Cuba, 70 ; criminals, 72. 
Statistics, general population, 73; criminal, 73 ; educational, 

146-159; official salaries, 166, 167; judicial, 177; police 

service, 240 ; economic and industrial, 247-252 ; religious, 

260, 261 ; census of 1810, 398. 
Students of Havana University executed, 423. 
Suzarte, José Q., portrait, 50 ; biography, 315. 

Tacon, Miguel, Captain-General, 203, 204; 411, 412. 
Templete, El (Temple Monument) Havana, illustration, 197; 

description, 355. 
Terry, Emilio, portrait, 230 ; biography, 363. 
Terry Theatre, Cienfuegos, illustration, 253 ; description, 369. 

Valesquez, Diego, 382, 383. 

Várela, Rev. Father Félix, portrait, facing 177 ; biography, 

Varona, E. J., quoted, 23 ; portrait, facing 113; biography, 324. 

Vilaró y Díaz, Juan, portrait, 258 ; biography, 371. 

Villaverde, Cirilo, portrait, 101 ; biography, 326. 

"Virginius," captured, 424; crew executed, 424, 425; sur- 
rendered, 425. 

Vives, Francisco Dionisio, Captain-General, 406, 409, 410. 

Volunteers, Spanish, in Cuba, 421-424. 

West Indies, statue and fountain of the, illustration, 119 ; 
description, 343. 

442 INDEX. 

White, José, portrait, 117 ; biography, 341. 
Woman, the Cuban, 261-269. 

Yara, insurrection of 1868-78, 124, 218, 419. 

Zambrana, Antonio, portrait, 231 ; biography, 364. 
Zambrana, Doña Luisa Perez de, portrait, 262 ; biography, 

Zambrana, Ramón, portrait, 255 ; biography, 369. 
Zanjón, peace and compromise of, 218, 219, 428, 429. 
Zapata, Salvador, portrait, 155 ; biography, 347. 
Zayas, José M., portrait, 254 ; biography, 369. 
Zayas, Juan Bruno, portrait, 157 ; biography, 348. 
Zenea, Juan Clemente, portrait, 106 ; reference, 107 ; poem by, 

original and translated, 108-110 ; biography, 328. 



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