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History of Cuba; or, Notes of a Traveller in the Tropics Being a Political, Historical, and Statistical Account of the Island, from its First Discovery to the Present Time   By: (1820-1895)

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First Page:

[Illustration: ENTRANCE TO THE HARBOR OF HAVANA.]

SIXTH THOUSAND.

HISTORY OF CUBA;

OR,

Notes of a Traveller in the Tropics.

BEING A

POLITICAL, HISTORICAL, AND STATISTICAL ACCOUNT OF THE ISLAND, FROM ITS FIRST DISCOVERY TO THE PRESENT TIME.

BY

MATURIN M. BALLOU.

L'ILE DE CUBA SEULE POURRAIT VALOIR UN ROYAUME.

L'Abbé Raynal.

ILLUSTRATED.

BOSTON: PHILLIPS, SAMPSON AND COMPANY. NEW YORK: J.C. DERBY.

PHILADELPHIA: LIPPINCOTT, GRAMBO & COMPANY.

1854.

Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1854, by PHILLIPS, SAMPSON & CO., In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the District of Massachusetts.

Stereotyped by HOBART & ROBBINS, New England Type and Stereotype Foundery BOSTON.

TO His Friend, FRANCIS A. DURIVAGE, ESQ., As a small Token of Regard for HIS EXCELLENCE IN THOSE QUALITIES WHICH CONSTITUTE STERLING MANHOOD; AS A TRUE AND WORTHY FRIEND; AS A RIPE SCHOLAR, AND A GRACEFUL AUTHOR, This Volume IS CORDIALLY DEDICATED BY THE AUTHOR

PREFACE.

The remarkable degree of interest expressed on all sides, at the present time, relative to the island of Cuba, has led the author of the following pages to place together in this form a series of notes from his journal, kept during a brief residence upon the island. To these he has prefixed a historical glance at the political story of Cuba, that may not be unworthy of preservation. The fact that the subject matter was penned in the hurry of observation upon the spot, and that it is thus a simple record of what would be most likely to engage and interest a stranger, is his excuse for the desultory character of the work. So critically is the island now situated, in a political point of view, that ere this book shall have passed through an edition, it may be no longer a dependency of Spain, or may have become the theatre of scenes to which its former convulsions shall bear no parallel.

In preparing the volume for the press, the author has felt the want of books of reference, bearing a late date. Indeed, there are none; and the only very modern records are those written in the desultory manner of hurried travellers. To the admirable work of the learned Ramon de la Sagra, a monument of industry and intelligence, the author of the following pages has been indebted for historical suggestions and data. For the privilege of consulting this, and other Spanish books and pamphlets, relative to the interests and history of the island, the author is indebted to the Hon. Edward Everett, who kindly placed them at his disposal. Where statistics were concerned, the several authorities have been carefully collated, and the most responsible given. The writer has preferred to offer the fresh memories of a pleasant trip to the tropics, to attempting a labored volume abounding in figures and statistics; and trusts that this summer book of a summer clime may float lightly upon the sea of public favor.

M.M.B.

CONTENTS.

CHAPTER I.

The Island of Cuba Early colonists Island aborigines First importation of slaves Cortez and his followers Aztecs The law of races Mexican aborigines Valley of Mexico Pizarro The end of heroes Retributive justice Decadence of Spanish power History of Cuba The rovers of the gulf Havana fortified The tyrant Velasquez Office of Captain general Loyalty of the Cubans Power of the captain general Cupidity of the government The slave trade The British take Havana General Don Luis de las Casas Don Francisco de Arranjo Improvement, moral and physical, of Cuba, 9

CHAPTER II.

The constitution of 1812 Revolution of La Granja Political aspect of the island Discontent among the Cubans The example before them Simon Bolivar, the Liberator Revolutions of 1823 and 1826 General Lorenzo and the constitution The assumption of extraordinary power by Tacon Civil war threatened Tacon sustained by royal authority Despair of the Cubans Military rule A foreign press established Programme of the liberal party General O'Donnell The spoils Influence of the climate, 25

CHAPTER III... Continue reading book >>




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