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Population of the Island, and of its Principal Towns.
Indias, states that, in 1553, the Indians Florida, believing, according to ancient bad entirely disappeared. The accounts traditions, that they were returning to of the bishop of Chiopa, on the popu- the country of their ancestors.* lation of Cuba, are equally contradic- The first census of Cuba was taken in tory. Humboldt, who weighs all the 1775. That and the subsequent census authorities, inclines to the opinion that are as follows: the original population of Cuba was 1975
.. 170,862 very small-say 300 or 400,000.* He 1791.
272,140 thinks that although the island, from 1811-Whites..
Free blacks... the great fertility of its soil, might i
....212,000 nourish several millions of Indians ;
1817-Whites..... yet, that if such a large population 18
.290,021 Free blacks....
115,691 had existed, it would have exhibit
.225,268 ed a more advanced civilization. Be
630,980 sides, if the population had been as great
325,000 Free blacks.......
130,000 as is asserted by some, he finds difficulty “ Slaves......
..260,000 in believing that it could have disap
.311,051 peared from any of the alleged causes- " Free blacks..
106,484 the tyranny of the conquerors, the faults
286,942 of governors, the severity of the slavery 1841–Whites.
418,291 imposed, the small-pox, and the fre. " Free blacks
.....152,838 quency of suicides in the short space of “ Slaves.
- 1,007,624 30 or 40 years, as is admitted.
.425,769 All the Spanish historians admit that Free blacks........ .149,226
* Slaves..... the aborigines of Cuba were enslaved;
898,752 but most of them endeavored to evade 18497-Whites............. 487,133 the imputation of cruelty on the part of " Free blacks....
164,410 66 Slaves...........
323,897 their Spanish masters. Herrera and
945,440 Oviedo attribute their rapid extermina
The last two censuses we take from tion to their despair on finding themselves subjected to the dominion of the
of the Havana Diario de la Marina, for Jan. Spain, and on being forced to labor.f
1, 1852. Neither of them includes solGarcilasso relates that the effect of diers in garrison
that the effect of diers in garrison, crews of vessels, or the the despair of the natives was such,
floating population. The census of 1846 that the rage of hanging themselves in adding 40,000 for the omission could be huts and caverns, by whole families,
" Suhole families increased to 938,752. And adding 54,prevailed, suicide being preferred to
560 for the omission of 1849, the census labor. Spanish writers have attempted to of that year becomes 1,000,000. The exculpate the conquestadores. by attribut- above censuses, from 1775, show the foling the disappearance of the natives to lowing progress of the white populatheir taste tor suicide! All cruelty • is denied. f r
1775 to 1791, increase per annum. ...2.14 per cent.
3.18 The oppression of the natives began 1791 to 1817,
1817 to 1827,
2.97 with the arrival of the "cruel Hernando 1827 to 1846,
2.00 de Soto," as Humboldt calls him, to- 1846 to 1849,
2.45 wards 1539; and to reconcile the state.
The censuses of 1841 and 1846 give
The ment of Gomara, that in 1553 all the the following as the population of the Indians had disappeared, he says, “we must necessarily admit that there were
ve principal cities and towns of Cuba:
1841. considerable remains of that people which saved themselves on canoes, in
.137,498...... 106,968 Puerto Prince......... .. 24,034...... 19.168 Santiago de Cuba.....
24,753.. 24,005 Guines..........
2,515.. * Essai sur l'Isle de Cuba, p. 130-132.
18,991.. + The persecution of Bertram, for reproving the
16,986 rented Cardenas....
1,828...... European masters, proves that they cruelly treated
3,103 the enslaved natives.
The Abbe Don Juan Nuix wrote a work enti- Essai, p. 133. Led Refleriones imparciales sobre la humanidad de For a dissertation upon the population of Cuba, los Espanoles, contra los pretendidas filosofos y see an able article in De Bow's Review, vol, viii., politicos, in which he congratulates the American D. 313, by T. C. Reynolds, Secretary of Legation at Indians “ og having fallen into the hands of the Madrid. We recommend every reader to peruse Spaniards, whose conduct has been at all times that article with care in connection with the presthe most huinane, and the government the wisest.” ent.
1846. however, is sometimes removed by hav.
1846. San Juan de los Remedios..... 4,313......
4104 ing the children baptized as white by Cienfuegos ...
12,718... 13,222 the priest; or, by procuring witnesses to Villa Clara ......
5,837 give oath to their white extraction, and Santo Spiritus...
9,484... 7,424 Nuevitas..........
the fraud is winked at. The greater
3,299... 3,780 portion of this class have procured their Bayamo.......
7.480...... 4,778 Holguin...
freedom by purchase.
4,199..... 3,065 Baracoa* ...
2,605...... 1,853 The slaves of Cuba are divided into
bozales, those recently brought from We have no later statements of the Africa': the ladinos, those imported population of the principal cities and before the law, in 1821, prohibiting the towns, except of the city of Havana. In slave trade; and the criollos, those born the Diario de la Marina for January 1, on the island. * By the laws of Cuba, 1852, it is stated that the population of every owner of slaves is bound to Havana in 1849, was 142,002; and in instruct them in the Catholic religion, 1850, 150,561 souls.
after the labor of the day has been The population of Cuba is divided into finished, to the end that they may be four classes, of which the first are the baptized and partake of the sacrament. native Spaniards, the most powerful por. On Sundays and feast days they are not tion. They comprise, with some excep- to be employed more than two hours for tions, the merchants, the army, the the necessary labors of the estate, the clergy, and all the government offices, feeding of the animals, etc., except when from the Captain-General down to the the gathering of the crop admits of no captain of partido. The Creoles form the delay. They are required to have daily second class, and are generally plant- six or eight 'plantains, or an equivalent ers, farmers, or lawyers, but are most in potatoes, yams, yucas, or other vegetagenerally scrupulously excluded from bles, eight ounces of meat or fish, and the army and higher civil offices, four ounces of rice or flour. The quanThey find no sympathy among the tity of clothes is also prescribed, and Spaniards, who treat them with open also the treatment of the women. They contempt and hauteur, though inferior to are not to be worked more than nine or them in intelligence and enterprise. ten hours per day, except during the The Creole seeing himself, in his own harvest of 'canes, when they may be native land, excluded from all offices in employed sixteen hours daily. On Sunthe government, in the army, and in the days and holidays they must be allowed church, regards with no favorable eye to attend to their cardens and private those sent from Spain to rule over him, occupations. Those only between sixand to mend their fortunes at his expense teen and sixty can be tasked, and when by exacting to the utmost from his liberated they must be allowed a pergains.
manent subsistence. A slave may purThe third class is made up of about chase his liberty for a price fixed by an equal number of free mulattoes and three arbiters, one chosen by the master free negroes, who are by law excluded and two by the Sindico. Procurador from all civil offices. They compose a General. Liberty and a reward of $50 respectable part of the militia, and would are to be bestowed on a slave who play an active part in any revolutionary reveals a conspiracy. No slave can movement that might occur. The free receive from his master, for any offence, colored population of Cuba have many more than twenty-five lashes; a crime privileges, and are more kindly treated requiring more must be punished only and respected than the same class in our after a judicial investigation. A master northern states. The Spaniard has not who maltreats his slave, maims him, or the same antipathy to color that the otherwise seriously injures him, is comAnglo-Saxon has. The free colored pelled to sell him to another. A master are forbidden by law to intermarry with violating the slave code may be fined the whites, and are also excluded from from $20 to $200. the learned professions. This obstacle,
* Bozal signies muzzled ; ladino, versed in an * This town is remarkable for being the place idiom, or one who has been in the country a year. where Columbus first landed, on the 28th of Octo- Criollo means Creole. The term bozal is also ber, 1482.
rendered nouvellement arrivé, en parlant d'un Notes on Cuba, p. 198.
Treatment of Slaves-Classes of Nobility-Priesthood.
Such is a partial sketch of the Cuban but also for the exemption they confer slave code; but it is necessary to ob- from petty annoyances from captains of serve that its provisions and require- partidos, and other low officers of justice. ments are not strictly regarded. That A Cuban noble can only be tried by part regarding the religious and moral a high tribunal, and cannot be arrested government of the slaves is enforced for debt. Military officers, also, can only only so far as to secure them baptism be indicted before a military court; and burial in consecrated grounds. On and priests only before ecclesiastical a few Spanish estates, says the author of bodies. "Notes on Cuba," prayers are repeated The origin of many of the Cuban to them before going to work in the nobility, while it exposes them to the morning, and before retiring to their private derision of the untitled crowd, dormitories. He also says that the slaves creates among themselves a clannish of Cuba, compared with the manufactur- feeling, and presents an insuperable ing and mining classes of England, labor barrier to a general social spirit among less, and, so far as physical enjoyment the nobility. The marquis of 1832 looks goes, are better off. He declares the down with something like contempt on account of their being killed by over his younger brother of 1835; and those labor, "absurd tales."*
of the 17th or 18th century, counting There is one other class of citizens in largely on their pedigree and antiquity, Cuba that we must notice, before leaving hold themselves quite aloof from the this branch of our subject. We allude mushroom $20,000 sugar noblemen” of to the “Nobility of Cuba." These con- the degenerate 19th. The tone of Cuban sist of twenty-nine marquises and thirty society is also eminently aristocratic, counts, more than half of whom have and certain classes are very exclusive. been created since 1816. From 1816 to The native of old Spain does not conceal 1833 Ferdinand VII. created eleven his hatred of foreigners and his contempt marquises and fifteen counts. Most of of the Creole.* them had acquired their wealth by The untitled crowd is divided into the sugar plantations, and are jocosely called sugar planter, the coffee planter, the "sugar noblemen." They often adopt the merchant, the liberal professions, and names of their estates, as the Marquis the literati. All below these form a de Santa Lucia, the Conde de Cosa- single class with which the rest do not Romero. The Marquis del Real Socorro associate. The planter is one grade obtained his title by presenting a large above the merchant. The bar and the sum of money to the government when bench are grossly corrupt and despised. its coffers were empty, and a few others Among the lower classes there is an had theirs conferred for military and absence of all refinement, religion, eduother services to the state. The greatest cation and decency. number have, however, been bought, no Nor is the moral character of the consideration being paid to aught but the higher classes of Cuba quite above suswealth of the individual, the mother picion. Their outward decorum may be, country thus taxing the idle arrogance of to a great extent, says a shrewd writer, her colonists. The price paid for a only in appearance, and there is much patent of nobility has varied from reason to believe that the grossest im$20,000 to $50,000, the purchaser being morality and irreligion prevails among compelled to entail a certain amount of them. Religion has become, in fact, in property with the title.
Cuba, a mere mockery, the priesthood One in Cuba is struck with the num- being plunged into the grossest imber of estates held by titled owners. morality, and given to a daily violation Many of them are very extensive, and of all those rules of conduct which are are rented out, paying a fixed annual so strictly enjoined by the Catholic tribute; so that a large plantation may churches of the United States. The often be obtained for a yearly tax, with. priests of Cuba and Mexico have beout paying any purchase money. Many come the scandal of the whole Catholic wealthy persons in Cuba have purchased world; and it would be a gross calumny titles of nobility, not only on account of on the enlightened Catholic citizens of the rank they give possessors in society, the United States, to insinuate that they • Notes on Cuba, pp. 249–263.
* Notes on Cuba, pp. 196-198.
countenanced Catholicism as it now profitable investments. By means of the exists in Cuba, if even they admit it to rail-road to Batabano, and the steamers be Catholicism at all. The most open on the southern coast, St. Jago de Cuba infidelity prevails in Cuba, and the can be reached in four days from priests as a class are universally des- Havana, and the journey to Jamaica is pised.
thus greatly expedited.* Communica* MANUFACTURES.-Of these the most tion with all parts of the island by water important are the making of sugar, mo- is effected by means of steamers, which lasses, and rum; the preparation of ply regularly. The number of coasting coffee, the manufacture of cigars, the vessels is very great. The number that bleaching of wax, and the manipulation entered the port of Havana, in 1851, was of the minor staples of the island. Man- 3,523.7 ufactures, indeed, of any other descrip- CURRENCY.-Paper money is untion, are not to be looked for in any known in Cuba. The circulating me. country where the population are not dium, like that of Old Spain, consists impelled to them by the barrenness of exclusively of the precious metals. The the soil. Salt is manufactured to a coins in use are Spanish doubloons, or limited extent.
ounces of gold, which are a legal tender INTERNAL COMMUNICATION - RAIL- for seventeen hard dollars; also the subROADS.—The means of communication divisions of the doubloon—the half bebetween the interior and the coast are ing $8 40; the quarter, $4 20; the very imperfect generally. The common eighth, $2 10; and the sixteenth, $1 50. roads are badly constructed, or rather Mexican and Columbian doubloons are not constructed at all, and during the also a legal tender for $16. Their alirainy season are, in general, impassable quot parts are worth 8, 4, 2, and $1, refor wheel carriages. The evil is die spectively. Of silver coins, the Spanminished by the long and narrow form ish dollar, and its divisions, and also of the island, which enables the planters Mexican, United States and South Ameto bring their produce to a place of ship- rican dollars, are a legal tender at their ment without any very long land jour- nominal value. neys. The number of coasting vessels The only incorporated banking estabis in consequence very considerable. lishment at Havana, is that called the There are three principal high roads, Royal Bank of Ferdinand VII., which under the care of the Junto de Fomento; was created in 1827. The capital of but they are always in bad condition, this bank, amounting to a million of doland quite impassable during the rainy lars, was provided by the Spanish govseason. They conduct to all parts of ernment. Its business is confined to the the island.
discounting of promissory notes and bills There are six rail-roads on the island. of exchange; and the directors are proThe oldest road, finished in 1838, leads hibited from engaging in any other from Havana to Guines, in the interior, speculation, however lucrative it may a distance of forty-five miles. It now appear, under the penalty of being held belongs, we believe, to a company, who personally responsible. The rate of dishave extended a branch from San count is fixed at 10 per cent. per an. Felipe to Batabano; another from Rin- num. No individual or house is accomcon to San Antonio is progressing, and modated beyond $10,000 for three another from Guines to Los Palos. The months. No new discount is allowed rail-road from Regla to the mines of to any party who has been guilty of the Prosperidad has been abandoned. The slightest irregularity, for the space of one from Matanzas to Sabanilla is com- three years afterwards. All property, plete. That from Cardenas to Bemba, even a wife's dowry, is liable for a debt and that from Jucaro to beyond Altami- due the bank. sal are long since finished, as also that The Colonial Minister of Finance is from Puerto Principe to Nuevitas. On president of the bank. The directors all these roads the accommodations for of the bank, three in number, are held passengers are not excelled by any road responsible for their proceedings to the in the United States. The engines are government, in the sum of $10,000 generally under the care of Americans, each, giving mortgages to that amount and also the general management of the ds. These roads have all proved
* Notes on Cuba, pp. 336—7.
Diario de la Habana.
on real estate. Each director has one The Sociedad Patriotica was establishof the three keys of the strong box. ed in 1790, and its name is now changed
There are also private banking-houses to that of the Real Sociedad Economica de at Harana, which discount bills, and la Habana, in which the term Royal deal in exchanges *
usurps the place of Patriotic. This EDOCATION. - In the whole island of Royal Society of Havana is divided into Cuba, education is at a very low ebb. four principal sections-on Education, According to the latest and most favora- Agriculture, Commerce and Popular Inble accounts, the schools are as follows: dustry, and the History of Cuba. There or whate ale children................129
is attached to the institution a public
library, kept in the old convent of San Of colored malt..........
Domingo, and is open daily, except on
Sundays and festivals. The society Iocal Schools in Cuba........
publishes monthly a memorial of its laThe pupils of these schools are divid.
bons, which is more or less valuable ed as follows:
for statisties regarding the past and present condition of the island. It has
branches in nine of the principal towns Colored boys.....
of Cuba, which are in correspondence
with it. The parent society in Havana Total ...............
has numbered from its foundation 300
members. Its corresponding members From this, then, it appears that out of a
of are 63. the whole population of Cuba, which is There is at Havana the Royal Univer. about 1,000,000, there are only 9,082 sity. embracing a medical and law children, of all grades, who attend
school, and chairs on all the natural school Of this number only 3,757 are
sciences. The medical school was reeducated gratuitously. The remaining organized in 1842, and the present re5.325 attend school at their own ex- quisitions for graduation, among others, pense. Of the 3,757 pupils 540 are
Te are a dassical education, and six years educated by the once flourishing “ So study of medicine. The ordeal through ciedad Patriotica," whose resources were which foreign candidates for licenses to derived from the personal subscriptions practice are now compelled to pass, is of the members, and the voluntary con- rigid in the extreme, and the expenses tributions of citizens; 2,111 by local amount to nearly $400. Several of the subscriptions; and the remaining 1,106 professors are French, and the school gratuitously taught by the professors.
has a very respectable standing I The latest official returns show that We take occasion here to observe, the number of free children, in the isle that it is with the greatest satisfaction of Cube, between the ages of five and that we find ourselves enabled to record fifteen, is 99,599; of whom, as before so favorable an account of medical edustated, only 9,082 have the benefit of cation in Cuba With all her fanlts, she schools, and these chiefly by private deserves the credit of duly appreciating means. No appropriations from the the importance of making medicine general treasury of Cuba are made for truly what it professes to be a learned public instruction, although the revenue profession. She lays down, as the first of the island is about $22.000.000. So
at $22.000.000. So requisite for a physician, a classical eductfar from receiving aid from the treasury, tion; and to this she adds a six years the schools have actually been deprived course of medical study. Our Appentas by it; for when the custom-houses have schools will, many of them be disposed taken charge of collecting the local to consider.' as unnecessart, such a se taxes established for puble instruction, vere traiming; but it just what it ten per cent. commission has been de- ought to be every where Here in the ducted for the service, and large sums United States we trave disagradec- a imposed on commerce and trade for this
13 repeat it—we have de grade de matte purpose, have been, and are to this day, cal profession. bo omittans the withheld and unaccounted for by the
aforeiber anotur redarik treasury. In Cuba only one free child in 63 attends school.
*Trumnbuil's Cube, m. 8-10