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News: THE SEARCH FOR ATLANTIS IN CUBA
A Report by Andrew Collins
http://www.andrewcollins.com/page/articles/atlantiscuba.htm
 
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HISTORY OF CUBA

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Bianca
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« on: February 28, 2008, 03:28:02 pm »








                                              HISTORY OF CUBA





By Jerry Wilkinson

Cuba is important to the history of Florida and the Keys because Florida was a Spanish
possession until 1762 when Florida was traded to Britain.

Even then, Spain insisted that the Keys were not a part of Florida.

England contested this, but neither cared as long as one did not interfere with the other'
s shipping. Cuba was Spain's first real foothold in the New World and was Spain's stepping
stone to the Americas.

The Keys Indians traded with Havana for many years.

Most of the Spanish shipwrecks were sailing from Havana to Spain when they wrecked on
the Florida reefs.



On October 28, 1492, Christopher Columbus landed in Cuba and christened it "Juana," in
honor of Prince Don Juan, son of Queen Isabella. Its Indian name was

"Cubanacan."

Slowly the name Cuba was adopted by the Spanish. Cuba's size and diversity of land-
scape no doubt convinced Columbus that he had indeed found Asia.

      Aborigines inhabited Cuba, as in all the New World, in pre-Columbian times. These are generally thought to be of three groups:


Guanahatabetes,

Ciboneys and

Tainos.


Of the three, the Tainos were the most advanced and subjugated the Ciboneys.

As well as being hunters and fishermen, the Tainos were agricultural, and grew yucca,
maiz, peanuts, squash, peppers, fruit and tobacco. They lived in villages in round shelters
and the men wore no clothes. They were experienced ocean travelers and easily could
have traveled the 90 miles to the Keys.

The Guanahatabetes, who were the oldest, practiced a shell culture with similarities to
that of the Keys Indians.
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Bianca
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« Reply #1 on: February 28, 2008, 03:33:35 pm »









By the direction of King Ferdinand, Diego Columbus (son of Christopher) was the
governor-general of Hispaniola. He commissioned Diego Velasquez to conquer and
settle Cuba.

When Christopher had visited Cuba on his second voyage, the Indians were hospitable.
Velasquez anticipated little difficulty. However, in that short time the Indians of Hispa-
niola had been treated so terribly, that head chieftain Hatuey had to flee to Cuba. He
had spread the word about the cruel white man to the Cuban natives.

In 1511, when Diego Velasquez and his 300 men landed for the conquest, they were
greeted by a cloud of arrows. On February 2, 1512, Chief Hatuey was tied to a post
after refusing to tell where the gold was. When offered a cross in order to die in the
grace of God and go to heaven, Chief Hatuey scornfully replied,

                   "If Christians go to heaven, I do not want to go to Heaven."

Flames consumed the chief's body and the resistance of the Indians collapsed almost
entirely. So began the colonization of Cuba. By 1515, Velasquez had established six
small settlements that included Havana. This was still 105 years before the Pilgrims
would land at Plymouth Rock in 1620.

Economically, there was little gold in Cuba, but agriculture more than made up for it.
However, the native labor force was disappearing so quickly, additional labor had to be
obtained. Thus, entered the slave trade. The first Spanish royal permit for Negro slaves
was issued in 1513, the same year that Ponce de Leon discovered La Florida.

Slave trading was large scale in 1524 and was wide open by 1550. By 1557, it is esti-
mated that only 2,000 native Indians were left in Cuba. The Spanish Crown received
a royalty for each slave imported. Slavery did not end in Cuba until 1886.

Cuba's first capital was Santiago de Cuba. Governor Diego de Mazariego took up resi-
dence in Havana in 1558. Havana was given the title of "City" in 1592 and was con-
firmed as the Capital in 1607. By 1602, Cuba's Spanish population was about 20,000
of which 13,000 lived in or around Havana. As a time perspective, the Pilgrims had not
yet arrived in North America.
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« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2008, 03:37:50 pm »









Havana became the principal port and naval base for all of Hispanic America and
existed solely for the good of the mother country.

Havana was the capital of the New World.

Trade with countries other than Spain was prohibited and all shipping had to be
done with Spanish ships. Almost all ships would put into Havana for food and water
before returning to Europe and the only practical route was northward via the Gulf
Stream.

This explains why so many ships in the waters off the Florida Keys were dashed
against the shallow reefs.

Cuba, as a strategic location, naval base and center of communication, was subject
to attack by all European sea powers. Cuba's misfortune climaxed in 1762 when the
English captured and looted Havana.

Havana remained under English dominion from August 13, 1762 to July 6, 1763 when
ownership was returned to Spain in trade for Florida.

As we know, Florida later provided a haven for fleeing Loyalists when the English lost
the Revolutionary War.

Interesting, and little known, is the fact that the English or Spanish ownership of the
Keys (Los Martires) was never really settled. The English Governor Ogilvie said the Keys
were part of Florida. Spanish agent Elixio said that they were The Martires or Havana
Norte and were a part of Cuba, not Florida; therefore not part of the treaty, which
had not defined the boundaries of Florida.

Both countries stood by their positions; however, neither contested -other than with words.

With Florida under English rule, many of the Spanish in Florida moved back to Cuba,
as did the Spanish in Santo Domingo when it was ceded to France. Thousands more
fled from French Haiti to Cuba when the blacks revolted and assumed power in Haiti.

As a result Cuba's population grew while Florida was under English control, and Cuban
commerce with the U.S. increased.
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« Reply #3 on: February 28, 2008, 03:42:13 pm »









A census of Cuba in 1774 indicated a total population of 161,670 and by 1817 it had
grown to 553,033.

Havana's population of 70,000 had surpassed that of early New York City.

Secessionist movements broke out in 1809 and continued off and on. A former colonel
in the Royal Spanish Army, Narcisso Lopez, fled to the U.S. in 1849 under suspicion of
overthrowing the Spanish government. He quickly gathered support against the Spanish
oppression of the local Cubans, but his first liberating invasion of Cuba from U.S. soil
failed. He quickly organized another invasion party of about 450 sympathizers and
landed at Cardenas, Cuba. Lopez did not have the support of the local Cuban citizens
and had to return to Key West in failure. It was not yet time for a large-scale Cuban
 revolt. Spanish/Cuban relations festered, and in 1868, Cuba's longest and bloodiest
war, the Ten Years' War, started. The war produced 200,000 Cuban and Spanish com-
bined casualties. In addition, there was great property damage.

Many prominent Cubans fled to Key West. This is also known as the Great Thirty Year
War as it effectively continued to 1898.

Vicente Martinez Ybor, a Cuban exile, opened a cigar factory, the El Principe de Gales,
in Key West. (This marked the beginning of Havana cigar manufacturing in the U.S.)
The San Carlos Institute was dedicated in Key West on January 21, 1871, named after
Carlos M. de Cespedes. Cespedes, a distinguished lawyer and Cuban planter, was one
of the first to issue the cry of "Cuba Libre" in 1868. His son was elected mayor of Key
West in 1876. Key West became a political-financial center that supported civil unrest
in Cuba. The U.S. did not intervene, as it was recovering from its Civil War in 1865.

Cuba's Civil War was over in 1878, but conflict continued. The revolution of 1895 was
orchestrated almost single-handedly by Jose Julian Marti. Marti rallied military leaders,
raised funds and organized expeditions. Much, but not most, of the funds were raised
in Key West. On February 24, 1895, open rebellion in Cuba broke out. President William
McKinley asked Spain for American mediation, but Spain refused. When the U.S. battle-
ship USS Maine exploded in Havana harbor (February 15, 1898), the U.S. public de-
manded war with Spain. The reason the battleship exploded remains unknown.
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« Reply #4 on: February 28, 2008, 03:45:35 pm »








The first Cuban Congress met on May 5, 1902 and assumed governance on May 20,
(May 20 is to Cuba as July 4 is to the U.S.). Thomas Estrada Palma was the first
President of the new Republic; however, a revolution occurred in July 1906 that re-
sulted in President Taft setting up a provisional government. Peace was restored and
the American provisional government was withdrawn three years later on April 1, 1909.

Cuba recovered and prospered primarily due to the high price of sugar until 1920, when
a financial crisis struck. A fifty- million dollar loan from the U.S. returned Cuba to pro-
sperity until revolts against President Zayas became widespread.

     General Gerardo Machado was elected in 1925 and re-elected in 1928. General Ma-
chado was reportedly Cuba's first full fledged dictator. During his second term, martial
law was declared and the Cuban Congress allowed him to suspend freedom of speech,
press and assembly. He was forced to flee the country in August 1933.

Cuba had many presidents, but they were made or unmade by Fulgencio Batista y Zaldi-
var, who had control of the army. Disorder and strife continued with the U.S. at the
center of real and alleged problems. Groups in the U.S. tried to use Cuba and groups in
Cuba tried to use the U.S.

In 1940, Colonel Batista was elected president. During his term, Cuba entered World War II
 on the side of the allies and established diplomatic relations with the USSR. Batista was
defeated in 1944 by Grau San Martin and Cuba joined the United Nations; however, falling
sugar prices started to disrupt Cuba's economy severely.

In 1948, Carlos Prio Socarras was elected president, but was overthrown by Batista in 1952.
By 1952, nine political parties had been formed, but Batista staged a coup without waiting
for an election. Cuba continued in a state of insurgency with anti-Batista elements con-
ducting various degrees of opposition, but Batista was re-elected in 1954.

On January 1, 1959, Batista resigned and fled the country.

Fidel Castro set up a provisional government with himself as premier.


http://www.keyshistory.org/cuba.html
« Last Edit: February 28, 2008, 03:46:37 pm by Bianca » Report Spam   Logged

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« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2009, 04:37:32 pm »

Jill Elvgren
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    Archaelogical treasure trove in Old Havana



« on: November 10, 2007, 02:40:50 pm » Quote 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Archaelogical treasure trove
in Old Havana

DECLARED a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, Old Havana conceals within her many streets, plazas and mansions the most intimate evidence of daily life during the colonial era.

The search for each one of these details that allow a step-by-step reconstruction of different stages of urban development and customs prevalent in the ancient Villa de San Cristóbal de La Habana, has constituted the greatest part of the investigative work done by the Archeological Department of the City Historian’s Office during its 20-plus years of effort.

One of the most interesting discoveries made recently took place at 162 Mercaderes Street, at the corner of Lamparilla when, during the ongoing restoration there, a hollow filled with 16th century garbage fortuitously came to light.

WINDOW INTO THE PAST

For archaeologist Roger Arrazcaeta Delgado, director of the Archaeological Department, this find is the most important from that century made to date, given the magnitude and novelty of the remains of cultural artifacts uncovered there and the excellent condition of the majority of them.

“At the outset, we questioned the primary use of the hollow, since it could have been an open hole where domestic garbage was dumped or a limestone and earth quarry later filled with waste resulting from other human activity. Both of these practices were common among the inhabitants of the Villa de San Cristóbal.

“This explains the existence of these hollows or openings into the subsoil found in many locations around Old Havana which we have studied. After analyzing the stratification of the terrain and the contents found, we reached the conclusion that it was a quarry, more than two meters wide, which was closed in the second part of the 16th century and covered with layers of earth and trash,” the specialist reported.

With the patience and skill of artisans, the department archaeologists have excavated the house at 162, Mercaderes Street over the course of two years. They have used different types of bricklaying trowels and topographical instruments and other tools.

As Arrazcaeta and expert Osvaldo Jiménez explain, the site is a veritable treasure trove of archaeological artifacts, the list of which includes bones from four species of pigeon, ducks, flamingos, cranes, chickens, pigs, beef, skeletons of fish, turtle shells, mussels, oysters and others, leaving a record of the food consumed by the inhabitants of the building and outlying areas in the 16th century.

Among the most interesting discoveries are the first reports, in the Caribbean region, of the presence of domesticated ducks; the size of the cattle introduced by the Spanish (the animals are larger than those from that century studied in the rest of Latin America because of the characteristics of Cuban grass) and an almost complete deer antler, the earliest known evidence of this species in the region.

The findings also include thousands of fragments of more than 30 types of ceramic pottery dating from 1519-1600, among them Italian and Spanish Majorcan, Montelupo blue on white and Santo Domingo blue on white, respectively.

The findings include matchlock gun projectiles, pitchers, Ming Dynasty porcelain, items of personal use such as gold rings, jet stone pendants to protect children from the “evil eye,” amulets, pins, buckles, buttons, dice made of bone and even Spanish coins from the reigns of Carlos III, Juana and Philip II.

Also significant is the presence of a large number of pottery shards identified as traditional aboriginal, used for culinary purposes and presumably made by the few Indians who lived in San Cristóbal de La Habana and those settled in the town of Guanabacoa during the 16th and 17th centuries.

Even with the excavations yet to be concluded, the building that housed for part of the 19th century the famous Isasi ironworks - destroyed by the fierce fire of May 17, 1890 – 162, Mercaderes Street is today a vivid portrait of the city’s colonial past.



http://www.granma.cu/ingles/2007/noviembre/vier9/tesoro.html
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« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2009, 04:39:18 pm »

Jill Elvgren
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    Re: Archaelogical treasure trove in Old Havana




« Reply #1 on: November 10, 2007, 02:43:52 pm » Quote 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Old Havana (Spanish: La Habana Vieja) contains the core of the original city of Havana. The positions of the original Havana city walls are the current boundaries of Old Havana.

Old Havana is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the name also refers to one of the municipalities of the city of Havana, Cuba, with the latter's boundaries extending to the south and west beyond the original city.

Havana Vieja was founded by the Spanish in 1519 in the natural harbor of the Bay of Havana. It became a stopping point for the treasure laden Spanish Galleons on the crossing between the New World and the Old World. In the 17th century it was one of the main ship-building centers. The city was built in baroque and neoclassic style. Many buildings have fallen in ruin in the later half of the 20th century, but a number are being restored. The narrow streets of old Havana contain many buildings, accounting for perhaps as many as one-third of the approximately 3,000 buildings found in Old Havana. It is the ancient city formed from the port, the official center and the Plaza de Armas. Old Havana was destroyed and burned by the French corsair Jacques de Sores. The pirate had taken Havana easily, plundering the city and burning much of it to the ground. After limiting the scarce defenders, De Sores left without obtaining the enormous wealth that he was hoping to find in Havana. The city remained devastated and set on fire. Since the incident, the Spanish brought soldiers and started building fortresses and walls to protect the city. Castillo de la Real Fuerza was the first fortress built; initiated in 1558, the construction was overseen by the engineer Bartolomé Sanchez.

Old Havana resembles Cadiz and Tenerife. Alejo Carpentier called it "de las columnas"(of the columns), but it could also be named for the gateways, the revoco, the deterioration and the rescue, the intimacy, the shade, the cool, the courtyards... In her there are all the big ancient monuments, the forts, the convents and churches, the palaces, the alleys, the arcade, the human density. The Cuban State has undertaken enormous efforts to preserve and to restore Old Havana through the efforts of the Office of the Historian of the City, directed by Eusebio Leal.

 
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« Reply #7 on: January 28, 2009, 04:40:53 pm »












                                                 The magnificence of the Last






Old Havana is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the name also refers to one of the municipalities of the city of Havana, Cuba, with the latter’s boundaries extending to the south and west beyond the original city.

Although it is today a sprawling metropolis of 2 million inhabitants, its old centre retains an interesting mix of Baroque and neoclassical monuments and a ensemble of private houses with arcades, balconies and internal courtyards. Everywhere you look there is an unique image waiting to be recorded.

Declared a World Heritage Site in 1982, La Habana Vieja is one of the oldest settlements in the America’s - full of charming, weather worn buildings and narrow, intriguing roadways. Lots of ancient building are under repair, but unfortunately, money is not enough, so that in many cases these are just superficial external repairs.

They won’t last, and every summer storm is causing severe damages to the buildings.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2009, 04:42:40 pm by Bianca » Report Spam   Logged

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« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2009, 04:44:46 pm »










Jill Elvgren
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    Old Havana: a Retrospective






« on: November 10, 2007, 02:46:24 pm » Quote 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Old Havana (Spanish: La Habana Vieja) contains the core of the original city of Havana. The positions of the original Havana city walls are the current boundaries of Old Havana.

Old Havana is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the name also refers to one of the municipalities of the city of Havana, Cuba, with the latter's boundaries extending to the south and west beyond the original city.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2009, 04:46:24 pm by Bianca » Report Spam   Logged

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« Reply #9 on: January 28, 2009, 04:48:35 pm »

Jill Elvgren
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    Re: Old Havana: a Retrospective
« Reply #1 on: November 10, 2007, 02:47:04 pm » Quote 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Havana Vieja was founded by the Spanish in 1519 in the natural harbor of the Bay of Havana. It became a stopping point for the treasure laden Spanish Galleons on the crossing between the New World and the Old World. In the 17th century it was one of the main ship-building centers. The city was built in baroque and neoclassic style. Many buildings have fallen in ruin in the later half of the 20th century, but a number are being restored. The narrow streets of old Havana contain many buildings, accounting for perhaps as many as one-third of the approximately 3,000 buildings found in Old Havana. It is the ancient city formed from the port, the official center and the Plaza de Armas. Old Havana was destroyed and burned by the French corsair Jacques de Sores. The pirate had taken Havana easily, plundering the city and burning much of it to the ground. After limiting the scarce defenders, De Sores left without obtaining the enormous wealth that he was hoping to find in Havana. The city remained devastated and set on fire. Since the incident, the Spanish brought soldiers and started building fortresses and walls to protect the city. Castillo de la Real Fuerza was the first fortress built; initiated in 1558, the construction was overseen by the engineer Bartolomé Sanchez.

Old Havana resembles Cadiz and Tenerife. Alejo Carpentier called it "de las columnas"(of the columns), but it could also be named for the gateways, the revoco, the deterioration and the rescue, the intimacy, the shade, the cool, the courtyards... In her there are all the big ancient monuments, the forts, the convents and churches, the palaces, the alleys, the arcade, the human density. The Cuban State has undertaken enormous efforts to preserve and to restore Old Havana through the efforts of the Office of the Historian of the City, directed by Eusebio Leal.
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« Reply #10 on: January 28, 2009, 04:50:34 pm »










Jill Elvgren
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    Re: Old Havana: a Retrospective
« Reply #2 on: November 10, 2007, 02:48:29 pm » Quote 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Plaza de la Catedral, the heart of Old Havana
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« Reply #11 on: January 28, 2009, 04:53:21 pm »








Jill Elvgren
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    Re: Old Havana: a Retrospective
« Reply #3 on: November 10, 2007, 02:49:39 pm » Quote 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------



Historical Hotel Plaza
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« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2009, 04:57:11 pm »









Jill Elvgren
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    Re: Old Havana: a Retrospective
« Reply #4 on: November 10, 2007, 02:51:06 pm » Quote 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


El Morro Castle
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« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2009, 04:59:54 pm »








Jill Elvgren
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    Re: Old Havana: a Retrospective
« Reply #7 on: November 10, 2007, 02:57:38 pm » Quote 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Old Havana overview
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