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Cronología de la historia de Cuba (en inglés)

Enviado el 3 agosto, 2009 en Cuba por cogito

He encontrado una interesante cronología de la historia cubana en la página http://www.historyofcuba.com/

Aunque algo incompleta considero que es, sin embargo, una útil referencia para los interesados en el tema. Cubre hechos hasta 1999.


Early History

3500 BC
The first humans arrive in Cuba.

1250 AD
Taino Indians arrive from the east.

August 3. With three ships, Cristóbal Colón (aka Christopher Columbus) sails into the unknown.
October 12. The expedition lands in what Colón calls "San Salvador," and the natives call "Guanahani" (and may possibly be the Watling Island).
October 14. Colón continues his expedition, soon along the shores of Cuba, which he calls "Juana," thinking that he's found Asia's mainland.
October 29. Cristóbal Colón lands in Cuba, claims island for Spain.

May 3. The Spanish Pope (Alexander VI) confirms Spanish claims to all lands "discovered" or "to be discovered" in the Western Ocean.
May 4. Pope Alexander VI issues a series of bulls that assigns a fixed dividing line (known as the Demarcation Line) between the possessions of Spain and Portugal. It runs 100 leagues west of the Cape Verde Isles. The region laying east of this line is to be settled by the Portuguese, and the territory to the west is to belong to Spain.
August 26. Pope Alexander VI issues a secret bull, the Dudum Siguidem, which nullifies any previous papal orders that had favored the Portuguese regarding the new world.
September 25. From Cádiz, Cristóbal Colón begins his second voyage to the New World. He brings 17 ships and 1,500 men, including missionaries, soldiers and laborers. There are about one hundred stowaways, as well as agricultural equipment, cattle and seeds

Sebastián de Ocampo circumnavigates Cuba and proves that it is an island.

Diego Colón (son of Cristóbal Colón) settles Cuba. Diego Velázquez is appointed governor of Cuba by Spain.

February 12. Hatuey is burned at the stake. Most of the indians (Ciboneys and Taíno Arawaks) that inhabit the island are eventually wiped out, and Cuba remains under Spanish rule for the next four centuries.
December 12. King Ferdinand of Spain thanks Diego Velásquez for the occupation of Cuba and for his "humane treatment of the natives."

The first record of slavery in Cuba. Landowner Amador de Lares gets permission to bring four African slaves from Hispaniola.
March – April. Juan Ponce de León discovers and sails along the South and Southeastern side of Florida (which he considers to be an island).
April 2. Juan Ponce de León lands on Florida's east coast and names it "La Florida."

The city of Havana is established by Pánfilo de Narváez. The city is named after San Cristóbal de Habana, a local chief.

Conquistador Hernán Cortés prepares a fleet in Cuba and sets sail for Mexico. After the conquest, Havana becomes the natural stopping point for fleets returning to Spain.
December 17. The first Catholic mass in Havana takes place under a ceiba tree.

The first large group of slaves (300) arrive in Cuba to work in a gold mine named Jaugua.

April 22. In the Treaty of Zaragoza, Spain and Portugal divide their claims in the Pacific by drawing an imaginary line from pole to pole 297-1/2 leagues east of the Moluccas.

December. A large Spanish force defeats Guamá and his followers.

The first recorded Negro slave uprising in Cuba takes place at the Jobabo mines. Four slaves battle a large military force until their death. Their heads are brought back to Bayamo to quiet the alarmed colonizers.

French pirates, with the help of disgruntled local slaves, burn the city of Havana.
See a map of the Western hemisphere from 1546
At this time there are six Christian towns in Cuba; Santiago, with 80 houses; Habana, with 70-80 homes, Baracoa, Puerto Príncipe, Sancti Spíritus, and Bayamo with 30-40 homes each.

Hernando de Soto lands on Florida and sets out to explore the interior.

In the early 1550's, a Taino chief named Guamá, along with his wife (Habaguanex) and about sixty other men, battles the Spaniards in hit-and-run, guerrilla-style attacks. By this time, however, the Spaniards have spread across the entire island.
The Spanish Crown allows a privileged group of merchants to import African slaves to Cuba because "of the laziness of the Cubans, who resist all kinds of work."

French pirate Peg-Leg Leclerc attacks Santiago de Cuba.

Another pirate, Jacques de Sores, a Lutheran, plunders the city of Havana.

It is estimated that only about 2,000 Tainos are left in all of Cuba (out of a population of about 3,000,000 before Spanish arrival).
May 14. An order of the Havana City Council prevents Negroes from owning taverns and inns, and from selling tobacco or wine (on penalty of fifty lashes).

September. A Royal decree regulating the sale of tobacco states that penalties for breaking this law shall be doubled if the law breaker is a Negro. They shall, in addition, receive 200 lashes in public.

The Castillo del Morro is completed. Strategically situated above the eastern entrance to the Havana harbor, the fort is designed to protect the city from attackers.

Cuba's population is estimated at about 20,000, of which about 13,000 live in and around Havana.

In order to end smuggling activities (mostly in Bayamo) the government decrees that the sale of tobacco to foreigners is punishable by death.

Havana is officially named the capital of Cuba.

A 10-year ban against tobacco cultivation is lifted, but the entire crop must be shipped to Seville.

The Treaty of Ryswick outlaws buccaneering, ending many pirate raids on the island.

According to a Royal decree, a slave may purchase his freedom. Slaves who obtain their freedom in this manner are known as cortados.

Spanish authorities create a monopoly known as the Factoria. This agency purchases all Cuban tobacco at fixed prices and sells it abroad.

April 17. All Cuban tobacco production falls under government monopoly, and a general purchasing agency (Estanco de Tobacco) is established in Havana, with offices in Bayamo, Trinidad and Santiago de Cuba. This leads to the "Insurrection of the Vegueros" (Sublevación de los Vegueros). The Vegueros again revolt in 1720 and 1723.

A slave revolt takes place at the sugar mill Quiebra-Hacha (in the west of Havana). About 300 slaves are involved, and only government troops are able to prevent the revolt from spreading.

The first theatrical work by a Cuban author appears. El Principe Jardinero y Fingido Cloridano (The Garener Prince and the False Cloridano), written by Don Santiago de Pita.

Based on the "Factoria" model, another monopoly company is created to handle all imports and exports in Havana. The "Royal Compañía de Comercio " soon acquires a bad reputation with Cubans, who complain they are being fleeced and that commerce is restricted in order to keep prices high.

The University of San Jerónimo opens in Havana.

José Martín Félix, a Havana native, expresses pride in his Creole identity in Key of the New World, Havana Described: News of its Foundations, Growth and Condition. The author also expressed sadness that Creoles are not allowed to participate in Cuba's government.

January. King George III of England declares war on Spain
June. A large British force captures Havana. They do not expand their occupation beyond the port, and leave the island in less than two years.
Between 1762 and 1838, about 391,000 slaves are brought to Cuba.

The English and Spanish governments make a trade: Florida (which had been captured by the Spanish) for Havana.

August. A royal decree by King Charles III gives Cuba the right to trade with Spain from various Cuban ports (not just Havana, as before). The new locations include Trinidad, Batabanó, Nuevitas, Remedios, and Matanzas.

The "Real Colegio Seminario de San Carlos y San Ambrosio" is established in Havana.

According to the sensus, Cuba has a total population of 172,620 inhabitants: 96,440 whites, 31,847 free blacks, and 44,333 black slaves.

Cuba produces 4,700 tons of sugar.

Struggle for Independence – 1

October 12. Havana's "Teatro Principal" is inaugurated.
November 5. A Royal order allows North American rebel vessels to purchase supplies in Cuban ports under their own flag. All transactions must be paid in cash, in bills of exchange, or in Negro slaves.

Cuba's government changes to an independent colonial administration under a captain general.

January. Spanish authorities end legal trade between Cuba and all countries other than Spain.

May 31. King Charles III issues a new slave code. Aside from allowing only 270 work days per year, masters are to feed and clothe the slaves according to prescribed standards, to instruct them in the Catholic religion and to convince them to hear Mass regularly. The code also makes requirements on slaves, such as "obey and respect" their masters. [Evidence shows that obligations imposed on slave-masters were not enforced.]

Luis de las Casas is appointed Captain General. He serves in this capacity until 1796.
Don José Agustín Caballero, Tomás Romay, Manuel Zequeria and others publish the first Cuban newspaper, Papel Periódico. Profits go to a public school. [In 1793 the Sociedad Económica makes the paper a semi-weekly and by 1810 the paper appears daily.]

August. A slave revolt begins in the French-half of Haiti, and soon spreads over the entire island. [In 1790, Haiti's population includes 32,000 resident whites, 24,000 freedmen, and 480,000 slaves.]
November 24. A royal decree allows the free commerce of slaves for the next 6 years, and lowers taxes on various Cuban imports.
In Cuba, 1 out of 23 residents is a slave.
Between 1791 and 1805, 91,211 slaves enter the island through Havana.

February 23. Captain General las Casas allows limited Cuban trade with the U.S.
June. The French fleet and most of the white French population are driven out of Haiti.
Spain joins the monarchical allies against Republican France.

Led by ex-slave Toussaint L'Ouverture, the slaves drive out the Spanish from Haiti.

July 22. Spain signs the Treaty of Basel with the victorious French Republic.
Nicolás Morales, a free Negro, leads an uprising that starts in Bayamo and quickly spreads throughout the eastern part of Cuba before it is suppressed by the Spanish army.Philip Foner in A History of Cuba and its Relations with the United States, Vol. 1, 1492-1845: "…what especially disturbed the slave-owners about this uprising was that whites and Negroes joined together in the revolt and demanded, as in the Haitian Revolution, equality between black and white."

June 12. After peace is reestablished, Spain ends all commercial ventures between Cuba and the U.S.
October 6. Now a French ally, Spain declares war on Britain.

Narcisso López is born in Venezuela. He joins the Spanish army at an early age and operates against General Simón Bolívar.
November 18. A Royal Decree opens the Atlantic and Caribbean ports of the Spanish empire to neutral trade on a temporary basis. [This decree is revoked with the Royal Decree of April 18, 1799, which closes these ports to neutral trade.]

July 1. In Haiti, L'Ouverture announces a new constitution that abolishes slavery and declares the island's independence.
Set on recovering the French-portion of Haiti and restoring white supremacy, napoleon sends an army of 43,000 French veterans lead by his brother in law, Victor E. Leclerc. (L'Ouverture is tricked into sailing to France and treacherously imprisoned until his death.)

War breaks out again between France and England.
November 29. The 8,000 French soldiers remaining in Haiti surrender.
December. The Spanish colonies are again open to neutral trade.
December 31. Cuba's romantic poet José María Heredia is born in Santiago de Cuba.

The Negro Republic of Haiti (the first in history) is proclaimed.
Sugar production in Cuba increases to 34,000 tons. [In 1795 it was 14,000 tons.]

Venezuelan Creole leader Sebastián Francisco de Miranda launches the first serious independence movement against Spain in the Americas.

Napoleon invades Spain. England and Spain become allies.
May 6. Under pressure from Napoleon, King Ferdinand VII and Prince Ferdinand renounce the Spanish throne. In June, Napoleon installs his brother Joseph as the new King of the Spanish empire.

May. Cuba's Junta Superior is invited by the Caracas Junta to join the revolt against Spain, but Cuba remains faithful to the Crown.

July 5. The United Provinces of Venezuela declare their independence from Spain. From Buenos Aires and Caracas, José San Martín and Simón Bolívar set out to end Spanish dominance of the New World. [The Republic of Columbia is proclaimed on December 17, 1819.]

February. José Antonio Aponte, leader of Negro uprising, and eight of his collaborators are caught and imprisoned.
April 9. At 9:30 a.m., Aponte and the other collaborators are put to death on the gallows. The head of Aponte is placed in an iron cage and displayed in front of the house where he lived, and his hand is displayed in another street. The heads of various accomplices are also displayed.

The period of the Napoleonic Wars brings prosperity to Cuba despite restrictions and obstacles placed by the crown. Demand for sugar, tobacco and coffee increases, and more capital is injected into crop production. More slaves are introduced, and trade between the U.S. and Cuba increases.

July. José Cienfuegos replaces Juan Ruiz de Apodaca as Captain General.

A British-inspired agreement ends the slave trade, but after the agreement, slaves continue to be imported illegally in greater numbers.
The Cuban tobacco monopoly, known as Factoria, is abolished.
A new census illustrates the growth of the island: 552,000 inhabitants, 239,000 of them whites, and 331,000 nonwhite.
December. Explaining the reason for the introduction of Negro slavery into Cuba, King Ferdinand VII of Spain writes, "the impossibility of finding Indians… to do the work of breaking and cultivating the land demanded that this work… be delivered to more robust arms."

February 10. A Royal Decree allows Creoles the right to trade with vessels from other nations at the various Cuban ports.

A Royal Decree finally grants Creoles full legal rights to the lands they occupy (until this time, all property was considered royal property).
April 18. Carlos Manuel de Céspedes is born in Bayamo.

April 16. The Constitution of 1812 is reinstated after slight resistance from Captain General Juan Manuel Cajigal.

Nicolás de Mahy succeeds Cajigal as Captain General.
July 28. Peru issues a declaration of independence.
September 15. The United Provinces of Central America issues a declaration of independence. The new confederacy includes Nicaragua, Honduras, Costa Rica, Guatemala and El Salvador.
Between 1821 and 1831 more than three hundred expeditions bring an estimated sixty thousand slaves to Cuba.

Cuban poet José María Heredia and José Francisco Lemus organize a secret society known as “Suns and Rays of Bolívar.” The society plans a rebellion for independence and seeks union with the famed liberator.
U.S. Secretary of State John Quincy Adams makes the policy of the U.S. perfectly clear, “These islands (Cuba and Puerto Rico) are natural appendages of the North American continent, and one of them (Cuba) almost within sight of our shores, from a multitude of considerations has become an object of transcendent importance to the commercial and political interests of our Union… These are laws of political as well as physical gravitation.”
December 2. In what becomes known as the Monroe Doctrine, President James Monroe stakes out the Western Hemisphere as a U.S. sphere of influence by warning Europe not to interfere in the affairs of any of the American nations that have recently become independent.
Between 1823 and 1836, clear practical and philosophical divisions develop and grow between Cubans and Spaniards.

December 9. With the battle of Ayacucho in Peru, Spanish forces are decisively defeated and thrown out of the American mainland—north, central and south. Spain still controls two islands in the West Indies: Cuba and Puerto Rico.

May 28. A Royal Decree expands the powers of the Captain General of Cuba.
Mexico and Venezuela plan an expedition to support the Cuban struggle for independence, but the United States, fearing an independent Cuba would lead to the end of slavery with repercussions in the Southern states, lets it be known through Secretary of State Henry Clay that it would block any move to liberate Cuba from Spain. The decision is based on the belief that in due time Cuba would come to be part of the U.S.

March 16. Francisco Agüero y Velazco and Andrés Manuel Sánchez are executed in Puerto Príncipe for opposing the Spanish empire's control over Cuba, becoming the first martyrs of the independence movement.

The census shows a population of 704,000, of whom 311,000 are white, 286,000 slaves, and 106,000 free Negroes or mixed bloods. It also lists 1,000 sugar mills, 30,090 ranches, 5,534 tobacco farms, and 2,067 coffee plantations.
Between 1827 and 1829, Cuban exiles in Colombia and Mexico form a secret society called the "Black Eagle" with the goal of starting another revolution, but the Spanish Government soon discovers them.

Spain increases taxation, imposes arbitrary rules for its own benefit and completely denies the Creoles (native born Cubans of mixed ancestry) any voice in the government.

The highly regarded magazine Revista bimestre de Cuba begins publication.

May. Mariano Ricafort becomes Captain General.
British colonies abolish slavery.

Child-queen Isabel II assumes the throne of Spain. | The Cuban Academy of Literature is founded.

March 21. The Spanish crown increases the authority of the Cuban Captain-General to dictatorial status.
June. General Miguel Tacón is appointed Captain-General of Cuba. Tacón's administration marks a new political direction for the island's government that lasts until the end Spanish rule over Cuba in 1898. Tacón is mistrustful of the Cubans and deals with them severely. In his eyes, Cubans are the enemy of Spain and must be kept from participating in public affairs.
[Until about this time, Cubans born to Spanish parents were considered Spanish like their parents. After Tacón's period, it was popular for Cubans born of Spanish parents to have a more "Cuban" identity. They were more likely to believe that Spanish laws were good for Spain, and that Cubans should be able to have a separate identity.]
July 15. A papal decree officially ends the Spanish Inquisition.
July 31. About 668,000 slaves are freed at sundown in the British West Indies.

July 9. Tomás Estrada Palma is born in Bayamo, Oriente. He becomes a noted Cuban revolutionary figure and the first President of the Republic of Cuba in 1902.

September 1. From exile in New York, José María Heredia writes to Cuba's Captain-General Tacón and requests permission to return to the island.

April 25. A new Royal Decree eliminates Cuban delegates from serving on the Cortes.

May 7. José María Heredia dies in Mexico.
In the 50-year period between 1790 to 1839, the number of sugar haciendas increases to about 800 from about 400.

Official Cuban census reports: 1,037,624 inhabitants: 448,291 white, 152,838 free blacks, 436,495 slaves. Twice as many American ships visit Havana. The value of Cuban exports to the U.S. is double that of sales to Spain.

June 14. Antonio Maceo is born in Majaguabo, San Luis, Oriente Province.

There are now about 1,442 sugar mills on the island.
January. U.S. citizens and "manifest destiny" advocates Moses Beach and John O'sullivan meet in Havana with members of the Club de la Habana, a group of wealthy Cubans seeking annexation to the U.S.

June 9. President Polk offers Spain $100 million for Cuba.
August 15. U.S. Minister Saunders meets with Spain's minister of foreign affairs Pedro J. Pidal in Madrid. Spain officially refuses to sell Cuba.

Yucatecan Indians from Mexico are imported for slave labor. At the same time, Chinese contract workers are entering the island in large numbers.
White persons enforce segregation in public places as a means of stressing their claim to superiority.
September – October. The first filibustering expedition by Narciso López (with the intention of invading Cuba) ends in failure.

Read a brief excerpt from the introduction to: Slaves, Sugar, & Colonial Society: Travel Accounts of Cuba, 1801-1899, by Louis A. Pérez, Jr.
April 25. The steamer Georgiana, with about 200 Kentucky filibusters on board, leaves new Orleans for Chagres, Panama (part of the Narciso López expedition). *
May 2. The steamer Susan Loud, with 150 Louisianan filibusters follows the Georgiana.
May 7. The steamer Creole, with Narciso López and about 650 men leave New Orleans, presumably heading for California by way of Chagres. *
* By going to Chagres, López hopes to evade the Neutrality Law of 1818, which forbids military expeditions against powers at peace with the U.S. from being launched from the U.S.
May 19. The second filibustering expedition, led by Narciso López, takes control of Cárdenas. After a brief battle with Spanish forces they are forced to the sea. Foner: "Of the entire force, only five men were Cubans; the rest came mainly from the Southern states."

August 11. The 3rd filibustering expedition (with 435 men) led by Narciso López lands at Bahía Honda (about 40 miles from Havana).
August 13. Spanish forces defeat López' army in the village of Las Pozas.
August 16. After capturing some of López' men at sea, they are taken to Havana, where the 51 remaining members of the regiment are placed before a firing squad.
September 1. Narciso López is executed publicly in Havana. Before his death, he shouts bravely, "My death will not change the destiny of Cuba!"
September. In New Orleans, former associates of Narciso López form a secret society called the "Order of the Lone Star." The goal of the order is to incorporate Cuba into the U.S. With 50 chapters in 8 Southern states and an estimated membership of 15,000 to 20,000, the order develops a plan to invade Cuba in the summer of 1852, in conjunction with the "Conspiracy of Vuelta Abajo," a revolt organized in Vuelta Abajo (Pinar del Río) by Francisco de Frías, Narciso's wealthy brother-in-law.
September 23. From an editorial in the New York Daily Times, "If the Cubans are really anxious for independence, why did they fight them (the invasion by Narcisso Lopez) with the utmost fierceness, from the time they first landed upon their shores? Why did they regard them as robbers and pirates, if they had bespoken their aid as allies and friends?"
"The people of the United States cannot be made to believe that any nation of Europe, except Spain, has any right to interfere with the destinies of Cuba."

August. Spaniards discover the "Conspiracy of Vuelta Abajo." Some of the conspirators escape to the U.S., but others are condemned to death. Frías is sent to prison.
October 22. After Spain refuses to sell Cuba to the U.S. a 2nd time, the New York Times declares, "The Cuban question is now the leading one of the time."

January 28. Don José Martí y Pérez is born in Havana.
April 29. The Junta Cubana of New York calls on General John A. Quitman (a former associate of Narciso López) to lead an invasion of Cuba, and proposes to make him "exclusive chief of our revolution, not only in its military, but also in its civil sense."
August 18. Quitman signs a formal agreement with the Junta Cubana which appoints him the "civil and military chief of the revolution, with all the powers and attributes of dictatorship as recognized by civilized nations, to be used and exercised by him for the purpose of overthrowing the Spanish government in the island of Cuba and its dependencies, and substituting in the place thereof a free and independent government." Article II of the agreement states that Quitman would protect slavery in Cuba.
September 23. Spain appoints the Marquis Juan de la Pezuela as Captain General of Cuba. He is well known as an enemy of slavery, and is assigned the task of suppressing the slave trade.
December 7. The Diario de la Marina, a newspaper operated by the government, begins a series of articles discussing slavery and slave trafficking. The articles stress the advantages of a free labor system.
December 23. Pezuela issues the first of several decrees: Negroes "known by the name of 'emancipados' are all free"; anyone caught importing Africans would be heavily fined and banished from the island for two years; all governors and lieutenant governors who fail to advice him of clandestine landings in their respective provinces will be removed from office. [A Negro bought in Africa for 40 "duros" can be sold in Cuba for 700 "duros." Since Cuba's long and broken coastline makes it difficult to prevent landings, slave traders readily risk the established British blockade.]

President Franklin Pierce offers Spain $130 million for Cuba. Spain refuses, again. (Attempts to buy or forcibly annex Cuba by invasion end with the American Civil War.)
February 28. In Havana, Spanish police board an American merchant ship, the Black Warrior, and imprison her crew under a charge of "violating customs regulations."
April. A number of influential slave owners meet in Havana with U.S. Consul William H. Robertson to urge that he persuade U.S. President Pierce to send American troops to Cuba to prevent slave emancipation.
May. All slave owners are instructed to make a full declaration of their slave property. This includes name, age and sex of each slave, and purchase information.
October 9, 10, 11. In Ostend, Belgium, 3 U.S. diplomats hold a meeting from which emerges "The Ostend Manifesto."
September. José de la Concha returns to Cuba as Captain General. (Pezuela is removed as a result of the Black Warrior incident.)

January 12. Captain General José de la Concha places Havana under martial law in anticipation of a filibustering expedition by General John A. Quitman.
March 9. General Quitman meets with U.S. President Pierce in Washington. After this meeting Quitman abandons attempts to annex Cuba through filibustering.
August 25. General Quitman officially resigns from efforts to annex Cuba through a filibustering expedition.

August 14. From the New Orleans Bee: "There is no earthly use in seeking to plant slavery in Northern territory; climactic influences are against us there, and slavery will not flourish where white labor can compete with it successfully. But southward we have almost a boundless field of enterprise lying before us. There is Cuba… Slave labor there already gives rich returns, and annexation to the Union would introduce superior American management in that island and raise the productivity of the individual slave laborers… Let the people of the South cease an unavailing effort to force slavery into ungenial climes, and strive to plant it where it would naturally tend."

Antonio Maceo joins the Masonic Lodge of Santiago de Cuba and enters the inner revolutionary circle.

March 25. An article in El Siglo by The Count of Pozos Dulces (who runs the paper) announces the formation of the Reform Party, adding that a number of slave and property owners have joined intellectuals in favoring the end of the slave traffic and the abolition of slavery.
November 25. A Royal Decree establishes a Colonial Reform Commission to discuss proposals to reform the island. A Junta de Información (Board of Information) is to discuss three particular issues: 1) special laws already promised and how they are to be founded, 2) how to regulate the work of Blacks and Asians and the encouragement of white immigration, 3) commercial treaties and related tax reforms.
By this time, Creole liberals are encouraged by the end of the Civil war in North America, the Spanish defeat in the revolution of Santo Domingo and the victory of Juárez in Mexico. Many Cubans are more willing to oppose the government, but most of the wealthy are still reluctant to risk their property in radical measures. The fear of the Negroes in a revolution is one of the main restraining factors.

February 16. Antonio Maceo marries María Magdalena Cabrales y Fernández.
March 25. José Antonio Saco is elected to represent the district of Santiago de Cuba in a commission that is to testify in Spain about needed reforms.
May 30. Captain-General Dulce is recalled, and replaced by Captain-General Lersundi, who stays until December of the same year. [Lersundi governs Cuba again from December 1867 until January 1869.]
October 30, 1866. The Junta de Información is inaugurated at a meeting presided by Don Alejandro Castro, Minister of Ultramar. Items 2 and 3 are discussed from the priorities identified on 11/25/1865, and some are disappointed by the small mention of item 1.
November. Maceo’s first daughter is born: María de la Caridad Maceo.
José Martí writes:
“The U.S. has never looked upon Cuba as anything but an appetizing possession with no drawback other than its quarrelsome, weak and unworthy population.” He warns Cubans that “to change masters is not to be free.”

Early in the year, the Spanish government imposes new taxes on the island ranging from 6 to 12 percent on real estate, incomes and all types of business. This is on top of the enormous customs duties about which Cubans have continuously complained.
April 27. In Madrid, the Spanish government dismisses the “Junta de Información,” a 22-member Cuban delegation asking for reforms.
April 30. The papers El Siglo and Diario de la Marina run articles about the reaction to the demise of the Junta de Información.
Read a brief excerpt from: Cuba: A Short History, about life before the war.

Struggle for Independence – 2

February 24. In Puerto Rico, an uprising known as the Grito de Lares begins.
August 4. At a coordinating meeting for revolutionary activities (on a farm named San Miguel de Rompe, in Las Tunas) Carlos Manuel de Céspedes makes a passionate plea for immediate action, ending with the words: “Gentlemen, the hour is solemn and decisive. The power of Spain is decrepit and worm-eaten; if it still appears great and strong to us, it is because for more than three centuries we have contemplated it from our knees.”
August 14. In Santiago de Cuba, a revolutionary committee is formed. [Eventually a date for rebellion is set for December 24 1868, but as you will see, the rebellion is forced to start early.]
September 18. Isabel II, Queen of Spain, is dethroned.
September 23. In Puerto Rico, the Revolutionary Junta proclaims a free Puerto Rican Republic.
October. Early in the month, a telegrapher friendly to the revolution intercepts a telegram from General Lersundi to Governor Udaeta of Bayamo. It reads: "Cuba belongs to Spain and for Spain she must be kept no matter who is governing. Send to prison D. Carlos Manuel de Céspedes, Francisco Vicente Aguilera, Pedro Figueredo, Francis Maceo Osorio, Bartolomé Masó, and Francisco Javier de Céspedes…" [The conspiracy is discovered when the wife of Trinidad Ramirez, one of the rebels, reveals the plan to her priest in confession. The priest convinces her to tell the authorities.]
October 10. From his plantation, La Demajagua, near Yara, Carlos Manuel de Céspedes proclaims Cuban independence in the historic “Grito de Yara.” Joined by 37 other planters, he liberates his slaves and incorporates them into a rebel army.
October 12. First clash with Spanish troops at Yara. The rebels eat supper at the Maceo house in Majabuabo. After the meal, Marcos Maceo donates four ounces of gold, a dozen good machetes, two revolvers, four shotguns and a blunderbuss. Antonio and José Maceo, with half-brother Justo Regüeyferes Grajales, join the rebels.
At this point, Spain has only 7,000 regulars on the island, and a Volunteer force armed with 90,000 Remington rifles purchased in the U.S. The volunteers help Spain to contain the rebellion until reinforcements arrive.
October. The rebel army, known as the mambises, consists initially of 147 volunteers who do not even have a weapon each. Their weapons consist of 45 fowling pieces, 4 rifles, and a few pistols and machetes.
October 24. A group of 80 distinguished Cuban citizens and prominent Spaniards hold a meeting with Captain-General Lersundi to ensure the continuing hostile policy against the insurgents. Lersundi re-emphasizes his loyalty to the Queen of Spain (who has been overthrown and is in exile).
October 28. Ten days after capturing the city of Bayamo, the Revolutionary Municipal Council of Bayamo petitions Céspedes to proclaim the immediate abolition of slavery.
November. The rebel army now has 12,000 men.
At battle of “El Cristo” and “El Cobre,” Antonio Maceo shows exceptional courage, initiative and leadership. He is quickly promoted to sergeant, and then to captain.
In Bayamo, Maceo achieves a victory that his commander, Colonel Pio Rosado, declared impossible. He is praised by General Mármol.
November 1868 through December 1869. Spain sends its finest officersto command 35,000 veteran soldiers and thousands of others. Spain also sends 14 warships and a train of artillery equipped with latest model Krupp cannons.
December 27. Céspedes signs a decree declaring Cuba incompatible with slavery, but adding that slavery will end "when it had full use of its powers under free suffrage so that it could agree on the best means of carrying the proposal to and end that would be advantageous to the old as well as the new citizen." [Meaning a gradual and indemnified abolition to happen after the war.]

January 4. General Don Domingo Dulce(a former Captain General with a liberal reputation) arrives in Cuba to replace Lersundi. Among his more liberal changes is the granting of freedom of the press and of assembly. Between January 7 and 28, 77 different periodicals appear supporting the revolution.
January 7. Spanish General Valmaseda outmaneuvers rebel General Marmól and surprises Cuban forces at El Saladillo. More than 2,000 Cubans die in this encounter, most of them are recently freed slaves.
January 8. On the plain of La Caridad, the battle continues.
January 10. Spanish General Valmaseda crosses the river Cauto and heads for Bayamo.
January 15. Valmaseda enters Bayamo and finds it burned to the ground. This is done with the unanimous consent of its inhabitants upon realizing they cannot resist the siege by Spanish forces armed with artillery and modern weapons.
January 16. Maceo is promoted to commander. He begins to operate with independent forces, still under the jurisdiction of General Marmól. With this new freedom to “formulate his own tactics,” he achieves victories in Mayari and Guantánamo.
January 21. In Havana, the Volunteers force (controlled by wealthy slave-owners opposed to independence) attacks the audience attending a comedy at the Villanueva Theatre. The performance is suspected of being favored by rebel sympathizers.
January 26. Maceo is promoted to lieutenant colonel of the Liberating Army.
Historian Philip Foner, from his book Antonio Maceo:
“On many occasions, Spanish officers were completely fooled by Maceo’s whirlwind attacks against their superior forces.”
February 9. Under General Federico Cavada (a former colonel in the U.S. Volunteer Service during the Civil War) the Las Villas district joins the war for independence.
February 26. The Revolutionary Assembly of the Central Department in Camagüey issues a declaration that states: “The institution of slavery, introduced into Cuba by Spanish Dominion, must be extinguished along with it.”
Read an excerpt from historian Philip Foner’s book: A History of Cuba and its relations with The United States, Volume II – 1845-1895, on the nature of the revolutionary government.
March 19. U.S. President Grant's cabinet makes its first major decision on a Cuban policy. Nearly all members of the cabinet, led by Secretary of State Hamilton Fish, are opposed to the recognition of Cuban belligerency.
March 24. José Morales Lemus, a Cuban representative of the revolutionary government, arrives in Washington and tries to see Hamilton Fish. He is told that the U.S. will "observe perfect good faith to Spain, and whatever might be our sympathies with a people, wherever, in any part of the world, struggling for more liberal government, we should not depart from our duty to other friendly governments nor be in haste to prematurely recognize a revolutionary movement until it had manifested capacity of self-sustenance and of some degree of stability." [However, Cuban rebels sustain a war for ten years with a great deal of stability, and Fish remains firm in his position.]
April 4. Dulce endorses a proclamation by Count Valmaseda in which all males over 15 years of age caught absent from their plantation without adequate excuse are to be shot.
April 9. The U.S. House of Representatives adopts a resolution to recognize Cuban belligerency by a vote of 98 to 25. (This is the will of the American people, but the U.S. government never acts on it, spurred by the desire to absorb Cuba.)
April 10. The Constitutional Convention meets at Guaimaro. A constitution is adopted that provides for a republican government. Article 24 declares, “all the inhabitants of the Republic are absolutely free.”
April. José Martí, now 17-years old, is sentenced to six years of hard labor for expressing his opposition to colonial rule.
May. General Thomas Jordan, a well-known U.S. Confederate officer, lands in Cuba and is soon made Cuban Chief-of-Staff.
May 14. In a fierce and bloody battle at San Agustín, Sergeant Marcos Maceo (Antonio Maceo's father) is killed in battle at the side of his son by a Spanish bullet. In his book about Antonio Maceo, Foner says, "Mariana Grajales, living incarnation of Cuban patriotism, cried out to the youngest of her sons, still a little boy: 'And you, stand up tall; it is already time that you should fight for your country.'"
In A History of Cuba and its relations with The United States, Volume 2, historian Philip S. Foner writes: “Indeed, as a passionate patriot and foe of the Spaniards, this Negro woman, Mariana Grajales, one of the outstanding women in Cuba’s revolutionary history, swayed her entire family to the cause of independence.”
May 22. In an attack at the strongly defended sugar mill, “Armonia,” Maceo receives the first of 24 wounds. He is carried back to a hidden rest camp, where his wife and his mother nurse him back to health.
A few weeks later, Maceo's two small children die of disease, possibly cholera.
June 5. Captain General Dulce leaves for Spain.
June 28. Captain General Antonio Caballero de Rodas arrives in Cuba.
Late in the month, an expedition organized by the New York Junta, made up of 800 to 1,400 men equipped with Spencer carbines, revolvers, sabres, two batteries of 12-pounder, and several 60-pounder guns, is intercepted by U.S. federal authorities and most of the men are arrested.
July 16. The House of Representatives rejects the Constitution. Instead, it institutes the Rule of the Freed (Reglamento de Libertos). This allows slavery to continue, but in a more discreet form. The slave, now called a “liberto,” must continue to work for his master, who has no obligation to feed, clothe or pay wages.
Historian Philip Foner, from his book Antonio Maceo:
“What the Cuban army lacked in numbers, experience, warfare training and arms and equipment was often compensated for by their thorough knowledge of the country, effective use of guerrilla tactics, greater immunity to cholera and other diseases that flourished on the island, and above all patriotic devotion. The most important asset of guerrilla warfare is an ideal; the rebels were fighting for the liberation of their country, and this gave them the popular support without which a guerrilla movement cannot be effective.”
September 5. U.S. Secretary of War John A. Rawlins* dies. He is the only man in U.S. President Grant's cabinet that actively promotes recognition of Cuban belligerency. From his deathbed, he sends a message to President Grant through Postmaster-General Creswell: “There is Cuba, poor, struggling Cuba. I want you to stand by the Cubans. Cuba must be free. Her tyrannical enemy must be crushed. Cuba must not only be free, but all her sister-islands. The Republic is responsible for its liberty. I will disappear; but you must concern yourself with this question. We have worked together. Now it is up to you alone to watch over Cuba.” [President Grant never recognizes Cuban belligerency.]
[* On February 13, 1931, the centenary of Rawlins’ birth is celebrated in Cuba.]
October. In a sharp turn in direction, Céspedes calls for the destruction of all the cane fields on the island. “Better for the cause of human liberty,” he says, “better for the cause of human rights, better for the children of our children, that Cuba should be free, even if we have to burn every vestige of civilization from the tip of Maisí to the tip of San Antonio, so that Spanish authority shall be eliminated.”
By the end of the year, Spain has amassed a powerful fleet, with about 50 vessels of 400 guns, including the Victoria and Zaragoza. This proves to be a major advantage, since the rebels have no navy and Spain is easily able to keep outside aid from getting through.
The rebel army is forced to abandon the province of Las Villas, the most western point of the rebellion, and fall back to Camagüey. However, Spaniards are constantly on the run in Santa Clara, Camagüey and Oriente provinces.

March 12. General Luis Marcano (from Santo Domingo) is treacherously assassinated.
March 24. An excerpt from a bitter editorial in Madrid’s newspaper "La Discusión."
June 26. General Donato Mármol is killed in battle. . General Máximo Gómez is placed in command of Maceo’s area. Gómez and Maceo become dominant military figures.
July 20. Gómez reorganizes his forces. General Calixto García becomes second in command, and Lieutenant Colonel Antonio Maceo is put in charge of the third battalion.
Heading a battalion of only 187 men, Maceo takes part in numerous successful attacks under Gómez’s command.
October 2. After defeating a Spanish attack on his camp in Majaguabo, Maceo receives another severe battle wound. By the twentieth he’s active again, taking part in the highly successful assault on the town of Ti-Arriba, which results in the destruction of the town and the capture of a large quantity of booty.
December 4. During an attack on the fortress of Baragua, Maceo is wounded again. His younger brother, Julio, dies in the same battle.
December 27. Spanish Prime Minister Juan Prim y Pratas is assassinated in Madrid.

July. Gómez decides to invade the Guantánamo zone, which is strongly guarded by Spanish elite units. [Planned by General Gómez, the campaign is designed to test the officers that had been in training in a sort of ambulatory officers' school. The efforts rely heavily on Maceo and Calixto García.]
At the beginning of the campaign, Maceo clashes with the famous rifle battalion of San Quintín, one of Spain’s most aggressive and disciplined units. In battle, Maceo’s aide, Manuel Amábile, sacrifices his life in order to save his leader. This is not the last example of the love Maceo's soldiers had for him.
During a fierce battle at “La India,” José Maceo lays wounded in front of the enemy trenches, and Antonio Maceo refuses to retreat without another attempt to save his brother. In a brave effort, Maceo leads a charge “through a veritable shower of bullets until the fortifications were breached and the buildings set on fire.” José Maceo is rescued, and after a long period of recovery his life is saved. The Spaniards fight to the death, and only one soldier escapes.
October 15. General Gómez leaves Maceo in charge while he attends a government conference on war strategy.
November 27. A group of medical students are executed in Havana by a Spanish firing squad.

January/February. Spanish General Martínez Campos, after failing to defeat Maceo with 1,000 men, declares, “It is impossible to end the war by means of arms.”
March. Maceo is promoted to full colonel.
March 8. Learning that Martínez Campos is expecting re-enforcements, Maceo intercepts the troops and stages a series of "flank and rear guard attacks," inflicting numerous wounds on the advancing columns.
March 18. Spanish troops receive additional support and engage Maceo in a six-hour battle. Maceo retreats.
March 27. Maceo strikes back, defeats Spanish troops at “Loma Del Burro.”

May 26 – June 7. During a conference with government officials, President Céspedes meets Maceo for the first time.
Gómez revives his plan to attack the West, argues that Cuban victories in Guantánamo are important, but the revolution can only make real headway if it moves west. The plan is accepted, but when ordered to divert men from the expedition to protect the members of the government, Céspedes refuses to obey, and is removed from command for disobedience.
The plan to move westward is later abandoned, and Maceo reluctantly replaces his commander.
June 20. General Calixto Garcia takes over Gómez’s position as commander of the province.
July 1. The whole army of Orience comes under Calixto Garcia. In the next four months, the rebel army wins victory after victory in the Guantánamo district. Maceo plays a leading role.
September 26. U.S. President Ulysses S. Grant rejects a proposal that offers Cuban independence and the abolition of slavery.
November. Maceo rejoins General García to help capture the town of Holguín. Exactly one month later the town is captured.
Late, 1872. As a result of the many successful Cuban campaigns, Captain General Valmaseda resigns. The new Captain General, Cándido Pieltán, adds 54,000 men, 42 artillery pieces, and 2,000 horses (aside from the thousands of guerrillas not formally part of the Spanish army but used mainly to guard towns, garrisons, plantations and mills) to the war effort. The Rebel Army, on the other hand, has close to 7,000 men.

May 11. Ignacio Agramonte is killed. General Máximo Gómez assumes command of the Eastern forces.
June 8. Antonio Maceo is promoted to Brigadier General.
August 6. A Royal Decree issued on this day condemns Antonio Maceo to death.
October. Gómez rejects a proposal by Vicente García to remove President Céspedes.
October 23. The ship Virginius sails from Kingston, Jamaica, with men and weapons for the rebels.
October 27. Members of the House of Representatives call for a meeting in Bijaugal. President Céspedes is not invited, and the session removes Céspedes and proclaims Salvador Cisneros Betancourt as President. The leading officers are present, including Major Generals Modesto Díaz and Manuel de J. Calvar; Brigadier Generals Antonio Maceo and José de J. Pérez; Colonels Guillermo Moncada and Francisco Borrero and others, accompanied by 2,000 soldiers. At the meeting, Cisneros announced his new cabinet, which included: Francisco Maceo Osorio as Secretary of State; Antonio Hurtado del Valle as Sub-Secretary; General Vicente García as Secretary of War and Treasury; Félix Figueredo as Sub-Secretary of Dispatch; and Federico Betancourt as Secretary of the Council.
October 31. After an 8-hour sea chase, Spanish officials arrest a number of Americans on the ship Virginius, an American vessel running guns to the Cuban rebels.
November 4. Four ranking officers of the rebel army who were arrested on the Virginius are executed.
November 8. In Santiago, 12 prisoners from the Virginius (including three Cubans and various U.S. and British citizens) are executed under orders of General Juan Burriel, who labeles them "enemies of the state." 36 members of the ship's crew (including Captain Fry) are also executed by firing squad after a court-martial aboard the warship San Francisco de Borja.
November 8, late morning. The British warship Niobe arrives in Santiago de Cuba. Commander Sir Lampton Loraine sends a telegram to military governor Juan Nepomuceno Burriel: "I demand that you stop the dreadful butchery that is taking place here."
December 3. Survivors from the Virginius are turned over to Sir Lampton Loraine on the Niobe.
December 18. The last survivors of the Virginius are delivered to Commander Braine at the US warship Juniata, in front of Morro Fortress, Havana.

January 3. In Spain, General Pavía, Captain-General of Madrid, stages a successful Coup De Tat and forces Queen Isabella to flee the country.
February 4. With permission from the government, Gómez forms a force of 500 soldiers from Oriente and Las Villas (300 infantry and 200 cavalry), and names Maceo General of the new division, second in command only to himself.
February. Rebel conservatives launch an all-out slander campaign against Maceo. The opposition stems from the effects of racial prejudice and propaganda about “black domination.”
February 10. In Naranjo, the Rebel Army defeats 2,000 artillery-equipped veteran Spanish troops.
February 27. Carlos Manuel de Céspedes is killed in battle after being ambushed at San Lorenzo (Oriente).
March 15. In the Battle of Las Guásimas, the rebel army is again victorious against larger Spanish forces. Maceo, with 200 cavalry and 50 infantry, attacks a column of 2,000 men sent from Camagüey. In all, the Spaniards pour 6,000 men and six pieces of artillery into the battle, but have to retreat.
March 17. As the battle of Las Guásimas continues and the Spanish cavalry is all but defeated, Spanish General Manuel Armizán requests help from troops in Camagüey. By the end of this battle, Spaniards suffer 1,037 dead and wounded, and the Cubans 166. The rebel victory uses so much ammunition and equipment that the western invasion is temporarily called off.
April 16. Captain General José Gutiérrez de la Concha signs another decree (the third) proclaiming the death penalty for Antonio Maceo and confiscating all his property.
April 18. Maceo’s brother, Miguel, dies in his arms from wounds received in an attack on the Spanish garrison at Cascorro.
September 4. Calixto García is captured by the Spaniards and Maceo assumes command of the Second Division.

January 6. General Máximo Gómez crosses the ‘trocha’ (the long fortified line that the Spaniards erected to prevent penetration of the West. “The objective, Gómez tells his men, “is the destruction of the plantations which sustain the enemy, principally the mills from which the hacendados derive their wealth and with which they support Spain’s war effort.”
April 27. General Vicente García renounces allegiance to the revolutionary government and calls an assembly at Lagunas de Varona of everyone dissatisfied dissatisfied with the progress of the revolution. The move results in a disruption of the whole revolutionary movement.
April 28. President Cisneros attends the protest meeting at Lagunas de Varona and addresses the hostile gathering: "I know, gentlemen, how I should and ought to end this affair, since I have Maceo in Oriente, Reve in Camagüey, and Gómez in Las Villas who will obey me. But rather than risk the disgrace of being accused as the author of the misfortunes of my country, I prefer to sacrifice my position-if that will lead to the reduction of ill will and to the good and uninterrupted march of the revolution." President Cisneros offers to resign.
June 18. Maceo meets with General Vicente García in Alcalá, near Holguín and expresses his disagreement with García’s actions.
July 28. After the House of Representatives accepts the resignation of Cisneros, Juan B. Spotorno is named interim President of the Republic.
November. U.S. Secretary of State Hamilton Fish announces that he is seeking to achieve action by the European powers, led by England, to restore peace in Cuba. Such peace, he adds, would include neither the abolition of slavery nor the independence of the island.
December. Another vicious campaign against Maceo begins. He is again accused of seeking a Black Republic. Maceo ignores the charges.
Alfonso XII, son of Isabel II, takes over the throne of Spain.

January 18. Joaquín Jovellar is appointed Captain-General of Cuba by the Spanish crown.
March 28. The House of Representatives elects Tomás Estrada Palma as president of the Republic (replacing Juan B. Spotorno).
May 16. From his camp in Baragua, Maceo writes a letter to President Tomás Estrada Palma addressing the charges against him. Estrada Palma does not respond.

May 11. García demands reforms in the revolutionary government through a new manifesto
September. Maceo is wounded again. Gómez writes in his diary: “General Maceo was seriously wounded, but that man, with his indomitable spirit and iron constitution, is already active again.”
September 27. After an informer advises General Martínez Campos of Maceo’s wounds and the small size of his escort, the General sends a column of 3,000 men to surround the area, but the rebels had just escaped. Reporting the affair to Madrid, Martínez writes: “I thought I was dealing with a stupid mulatto, a rude muleteer; but I found him transformed not only into a real general, capable of directing his movement with judgment and precision, but also into an athlete who, finding himself indisposed on a litter, assaulted by my troops, abandoned his bed, leaped upon a horse and outdistanced those pursuing him.”
November. President Estrada Palma is captured and imprisoned by the Spaniards. Maximo Gomez is offered the presidency, but he refuses. [Many believe this to be factor that ended the Ten Year War unfavorably for the rebels.] General Vicente García is named president of the Republic.
December. The rebel government, ready to discuss peace terms with Martínez Campos, asks for the neutralization of a part of Camagüey province.

January 29. In the Sierra Maestra Mountains, Maceo successfully ambushes a large column of Spanish troops. The rebels capture their booty, including many weapons and ammunitions, and force the Spaniards to retreat with many dead and wounded.
February 4. While most of his troops are away and he's only left with 38 rebels, Maceo is completely surrounded and outnumbered more than eight-to-one. After three hours of brutal combat, the Cubans completely rout their enemy. Spanish prisoners are later released to the Spanish commanding general.
February 5. A conference is held between the most important leaders of the government and the Spanish generals. The government, including President García and the House of Representatives resign. A Comité del Centro (Committee of the Central Department) is formed.
February 7, 8, 9. In the area of San Ulpiano, Maceo achieves a brilliant victory over the famous San Quentín battalion.
February 9. The Comité del Centro asks Martínez Campos for terms to cease fighting.
February 11. At a meeting in Zanjón, in Camagüey, the Treaty of Zanjón (Pacto de Zanjón) is accepted. Slaves who fought on either side are freed, but slavery is not abolished and Cuba remains under Spanish rule.
February 29. Surrender ceremonies are scheduled to take place at Puerto Príncipe.
March 4. The New York Times runs a lengthy review of the Ten-Year War that doesn't mention Antonio Maceo.
March 8. Maceo camps at Baraguá, near Santiago de Cuba.
March 15. In Baraguá, General Martínez Campos and other Spanish representatives meet with a small gathering of black and white Cuban officers led by General Maceo. The Spanish general continually addresses Maceo as "señor." An eight-day truce is established, but it is agreed that it will end on March 23.
March 18. Maceo is offered a considerable sum of money to accept the Zanjón pact. He replies:
“Do you think that a man who is fighting for a principle and has a high regard for his honor and reputation can sell himself while there is still at least a chance of saving his principles by dying or trying to enforce them before he denigrates himself? Men like me fight only in the cause of liberty and will smash their guns rather than submit.”
March 23. War breaks out again. Maceo issues a circular that becomes known as “The Protest of Baraguá.”
April 6. New York’s La Verdad pays tribute to Maceo’s action: “The hero of the day is Maceo, and it appears it is up to him to raise Cuba again to the pinnacle of its glory.”
May 10. Maceo leaves Cuba (under Presidential orders) in a Spanish cruiser headed from Santiago de Cuba for Jamaica.
May 21. At Loma Pelada, the rebel government accepts Spanish peace terms, officially ending the Ten-Year War.
October. After organizing the Cuban Revolutionary Committee (Comité Revolucionario Cubano), Major General Calixto García issues a manifesto inviting all Cubans to unite in the fight against Spanish rule.
November 23. La Independencia, a publication of the Revolutionary Committee, urges slaves to “take your machetes in hand, and burn the cane.”
José Martí returns to Cuba.

August 5. At a conference in Kingston, Jamaica, Maceo and García plan the next uprising.
August 26. The Little War (La Guerra Chiquita) begins prematurely in Santiago de Cuba. (Some historians consider this to be Cuba's second war of independence, and others ignore it, referring to the struggle that began in 1895 as Cuba's second attempt.)
September 5. Antonio Maceo issues a circular known as “The Kingston Proclamation,” reminding Cubans that the reforms promised have not materialized. "Instead of giving Cubans the opportunity to participate in the direction of their government, Spaniards have been pouring into the island to man political posts, pushing the rightful representatives of the people to one side; they are guided only by the interests of their pockets and that of the Peninsula…”
December 14. In Haiti, an assassination attempt is made on Maceo by Dominican generals Quintín Díaz and Antonio Pérez. Maceo is warned in advance and the attempt fails. It is later revealed that the attempt was planned and paid for by Cuba’s Captain General Ramón Blanco.
José Martí is again exiled. He travels to the U.S., then to Venezuela.

January. Havana becomes the center of slave trafficking to the new world. By now this has become a very lucrative enterprise.
January 24. José Martí makes his first public speech in the U.S. at New York's "Steck Hall." He denies the charge that slaves are using the insurrection to wreak vengeance on whites, which he attributes to Spanish propaganda. “The sins of the slave,” he says, “fall wholly and exclusively on the master.”
In a future article printed in PATRIA, titled, “My Race,” Martí asserts that “Cuban means more than white, mulatto or black men. The souls of white men and Negroes have arisen together from the battlefields where they fought and died for Cuba. Alongside every white man there was a Negro, equal in loyalty and brotherhood for the daily tasks of war. Merit, the tangible culmination of cultural progress, and the inexorable play of economic forces will ultimately unite all men. There is much greatness in Cuba, in both Negroes and whites.”
June 1. General José Maceo, Brigadier Rafael Maceo, Guillermo Moncada, and other rebel leaders surrender. The surrender is arranged by the consuls of France and England in Guantánamo, on the condition that the rebels be given safe passage from the island. But once out at sea, a Spanish warship takes them to Spanish prisons in Africa.
June 28. Maceo leaves Santo Domingo with 34 companions and a cargo of arms, bound for New York.
July 6. A third attempt is made on Maceo’s life.
August 3. García is forced to surrender and is sent to prison in Spain.
August 24.Juan Bellido de Luna, director of the Cuban revolutionary paper in New York, "La Independencia," writes to Maceo, urges him not to invade Cuba.
The U.S. government prepares for overseas expansion, wiping out Native American resistance in the West and building an offensive Navy. Investment by the U.S. in Cuba increases rapidly. Of Cuban exports, 83 percent go to the U.S., only 6 percent to Spain.

José Martí settles in New York, where he lives until 1895.
December 1. U.S. Secretary of State James G. Blaine writes; "that rich island, the key to the Gulf of Mexico, and the field for our most extended trade in the Western Hemisphere, is, though in the hands of Spain, a part of the American commercial system… If ever ceasing to be Spanish, Cuba must necessarily become American and not fall under any other European domination."
December 10. En route to Honduras, Gómez stops in Kingston, where Cuban physician Eusebio Hernández arranges a discussion group with Maceo, Carlos Roloff, and José María Aguirre de Valdéz. Maceo insists that when the time comes, General Gómez is the one man behind whom all Cubans can unite.

May 31. Maceo finds work in Honduras as deputy judge.
July 31. Maceo finds new work (still in Honduras) as commander of the ports of Puerto Cortés and Omoa.
November. Maceo receives the first letter from Martí, (dated July 20).

January. Maceo’s wife, María Cabrales, arrives in Puerto Cortés. Later that same month, General Gómez calls on Maceo with a business proposition – the establishment of an agricultural colony of Cuban emigrants.
June 13. Maceo writes to the editor of El Yara:
“Cuba will be free when the redeeming sword flings her antagonists into the sea. The Spanish domination was a shame and affront to the world that suffered it. But for is it is a shame which dishonors us. Whoever tries to take power over Cuba will only get the dust of its soil drenched in blood, if he does not perish in the struggle.”
July. Maceo resigns his posts in Honduras and declares, “Our enslaved Cuba demands that her sons fight for her freedom.”

August 2. Maceo and Gómez set sail with their families for the U.S. to join the new independence movement.
October 1. In New York, Maceo and Gómez begin to hold conferences at the small hotel of Madame Griffon, on Ninth Ave. This is the first time that Maceo and Martí meet face-to-face.
October 20. In a letter to Gómez, Martí resigns from the revolutionary movement.

October. Maceo travels to Key West to raise money for the independence effort.
December 23. A letter from Gómez to Maceo leads to the first serious breach in their long friendship.

January 16. Maceo sends Gómez another letter, less severe in tone than his first response.
July 10. Flor Crombet arrives in Panama.
July 20. Crombet arrives in Kingston, aboard the Morning Star, with arms and ammunitions for the rebels. “But the ship’s captain,” writes Foner, “fearful of being arrested with his dangerous cargo, threw the entire shipment into the sea and returned to New York.” (This is the second time that war materials are lost).
August 17. At a conference of all the military and civil leaders in Jamaica, the majority votes (over Maceo’s objections) to make another effort to get the revolution started.
Foner: “At one point in the conference, the dissension between Maceo and Crombet reached so heated a point that Maceo challenged Crombet to a duel. (After seconds had been appointed, they decided that the duel should be postponed indefinitely for the good of the cause, and were able to persuade the two combatants to accept this decision.)"
August 31. At a dispute over finances, in which Maceo questions Gómez’s authoritarian style, his integrity, and his fitness to command, Gómez brakes off their friendship.
October 7. Slavery is abolished in Cuba, since economic conditions make it more profitable to free slaves and hire them for work by day, avoiding the expense of year round support.
December 8. Gómez announces the end of the rebel movement.
Historian Philip Foner, from his book Antonio Maceo:
“The failure was (also) due to a serious flaw in the organization of the revolutionary movement. Its total leadership had been in the hands of military officers, with civilians confined to the task of raising funds. The movement itself had started with the military leaders, who had then called in the revolutionary émigrés. This gave it a dictatorial character from the very outset, for the civilians were expected to blindly accept the decrees of the military leaders, especially those of the supreme commander, Máximo Gómez. Inevitably, as was illustrated by Martí ’s withdrawal, friction would arise not only between the two tendencies in the revolutionary movement, but also among the military leaders themselves, as in the disputes between Gómez and Maceo and Crombet and Maceo. Under these circumstances, it is hardly surprising that the entire movement deteriorated.
Whatever the cause of the end of the rebel movement, it was a bitter blow to Maceo. His eight-year longing to return to the field of battle for Cuban freedom had been thwarted and obstructed, and now he had received the major portion of blame for the latest fiasco. Finally, he had lost his great friendship with Gómez, and had made a dangerous enemy of Crombet.”

January. In Panama, Maceo obtains a concession to build a large number of wooden houses in the community of Bas Obispo (and his financial status improves considerably).

October. In Havana, José Beltrán wins a court decision asserting that “it would be an injury to deny a man of color the service he solicited because of his race.” The case is brought about because a café owner had refused him service, siting the color of his skin as the reason.

Struggle for Independence – 3

January 29. With a guarantee of safe passage by the Spanish consul, Maceo leaves Port-au-Prince (on the "Manuelito y Maria") headed for Cuba. This is his first visit in 12 years.
February 5. At eleven o’clock in the morning, the “Manuelito y Maria” reaches Havana. A reporter from the daily newspaper La Lucha interviews Maceo, who stays at the Hotel Inglaterra, and receives many visits from former rebel leaders and others that wish to meet him.
July 29. At a banquet in Maceo’s honor, a young man named Jose J. Hernandez asks about Cuba being annexed to the U.S. to become “one more star in the great American constellation.” Maceo immediately replies, “Young man, I believe, although it seems impossible to me that this can be the only outcome, that in such a case I would be on the side of the Spaniards.”
August 24. Captain General Camilo García de Polavieja y Castillo arrives in Cuba. Within forty-eight hours, he orders the civil governor of Santiago de Cuba to arrange for Maceo’s immediate departure.
August 29. A police escort informs Maceo and his wife at their hotel that they must leave the following day on an American ship bound for New York.
August 30. The civil governor, Juan Antonio Vinont, escorts Maceo and his wife to the steam ship Cienfuegos. While saying farewell, the governor puts thirty ounces of gold in Maceo's hand. When asked about the source of the money, the governor replies that he's been instructed to do so by the government. Maceo refuses the money.
November. At a speech in Tampa, Martí states:
“To all Cubans, whether they come from the continent where the sun scorches the skin or from countries where the light is gentler, this will be the revolution in which all Cubans, regardless of color, will participate.”

May 16. From The Detroit Free Press: "Cuba would make one of the finest states in the Union, and if American wealth, enterprise and genius once invaded the superb island, it would become a veritable hive of industry in addition to being one of the most fertile gardens of the world. There is a strong party growing up in the island in favor of reciprocity with and annexation to the United States. We should act at once and make this possible."

January 5. After two years of organizing Cubans both inside and outside the island, José Martí founds the Cuban Revolutionary Party. This is a major accomplishment, since he is able to unify many traditionally conflicting interests behind the goal of Cuban independence.
March 4. José Martí launches Patria (Fatherland) a publication dedicated to the cause of Cuban independence. Tobacco workers in Florida donate most of the funds for the first issue. Patria is edited by Puerto Rican Negro Sotero Figueroa.
March 5. In Mexico City, the newspaper El Partido Liberal publishes Martí's Our America.
“In Cuba,” Martí writes, “ there is no fear of a racial war. Men are more than white, more than mulatto, more than black. They died for Cuba in the fields of battle; the souls of blacks and whites have risen together up to heaven. In daily life, in defense, in loyalty, in brotherhood, in study, at the side of every white there was always a black.”

January 3. Máximo Gómez is formally appointed military chief of all the men under arms.
February 1. Martí offers Maceo a leading place in the new revolutionary movement. Maceo does not immediately respond.
April. An insurrection, not authorized by the Cuban Revolutionary Party, breaks out in Holguín under the leadership of Manuel and Ricardo Sartorius. The revolt is quickly defeated by Spaniards, causing the revolutionary movement to lose face.
May. A serious economic crisis hits the U.S., causing thousands of shops and factories to shut down by the fall. The Tobacco industry of the South is severely affected, and many Cuban workers find it impossible to maintain their regular donations to the Revolutionary Party.
June. Marti and Maceo meet in San José, Costa Rica.
June 10. In San José, Martí supervises the establishment of a new revolutionary club.
October 6. In “Patria,” Martí publishes his insights about Antonio Maceo.
November 23. At 85 years of age, Maceo’s mother, Mariana Grajales, dies.
December 12. In Patria, Martí pays tribute to Mariana Grajales (Maceo's mother):
“[Cuba’s] entire people, rich and poor, arrogant and humble, masters and servants, followed this woman of eighty-five years to the grave in a strange land. Died in Jamaica, November 27, Mariana Maceo.
All Cubans attended the internment, because there is no heart in Cuba that does not feel all that is owed to this beloved old woman, who would always caress your hand with such tenderness. Her mind was already going from having lived so much, but from time to time that energetic face lit up, as though a ray of sun were shining within… I remember that when we were talking about the war at a time when it seemed as if we were not able to carry on the struggle, she got up brusquely, and turned aside to think, alone. And she, who was so good, looked at us as if with anger. Many times, if I had forgotten my duty as a man, I would have retained it because of the example of that woman. Her husband and sons died fighting for Cuba, and we all know that from her breasts, Antonio and Jose Maceo imbibed the qualities which propelled them into the vanguard of the defenders of our liberties.”
December 19. In La Igualdad, Juan Gualberto Gómez writes "To a Prejudiced Person." He asserts that racial discrimination is a learned behavior. "How could the color of black skin," he writes, "produce repulsion in you, when the black nanny was probably the person that your eyes contemplated with greatest affection when they began to see?" He adds that the concepts of superiority and inferiority are artificial.

By this time, less than 20% of sugar mill owners in Cuba are Cubans, and more than 95% of all Cuban sugar exports go to the U.S. This sets the stage for one of Cuba’s greatest tragedies: a single-crop economy with a single country to sell to.
September 30. Tired of waiting for the wealthy hacendados to provide the money already promised the revolution, Gómez writes to Maceo, asking that everything be ready by “November 15 at the latest,” to begin the new war for independence.
November 17. Maceo is the target of another assassination attempt after attending a theater performance ("Felipe Derblay," a comedy by Jorge Ohnet presented by the Company Paulino Delgado). Maceo is shot on the shoulder. It is his twenty-second wound. Also targeted is Enrique Loinás del Castillo, who saves Maceo's life. [Loinás is later deported from of Costa Rica.]

January 14. As the war of independence is about to begin, the U.S. government detains 3 ships (the Amadis, the Lagonda, and the Baracoa) full of arms and supplies for the rebels. This is a terrible blow to the revolutionary effort, at the cost of nearly three years of work and $58,000, and the first of a number of serious setbacks.
February 24. With the "Cry of Baire," (Grito de Baire) Revolution breaks out again. (Baire is a village about 50 miles from Santiago de Cuba.) Historian Philip S. Foner, in The Spanish-Cuban-American War, Vol. 1, writes: "According to all standard works by military analysts, the prospects for the insurgents did not appear bright. The Spanish army already in the island was superior in number, equipment, training, and in almost every essential of warfare. Moreover, a steady stream of reinforcements could be dispatched to Cuba, and the insurgents had no navy to prevent their reaching the scene of conflict."
March 25. In Santo Domingo, Martí and Gómez sign the Montecristi Manifesto, which outlines the policy of Cuba's war of independence.
March 25. Martí writes his mother.
March 30. Antonio and José Maceo land in eastern Cuba (from Santo Domingo). The ship is destroyed during the landing on the beach near Baracoa. The rebels are greeted with joy by the farmers cry “Maceo is here! Viva Cuba Libre!”
April 11. José Martí and Máximo Gómez land in eastern Cuba from Costa Rica.
April 21. Maceo orders all rebel officers “to hang every emissary of the Spanish government, Peninsular or Cuban, whatever may be his rank, who presents himself in our camps with propositions of peace. This order must be carried out without hesitation of any kind or without attention to any contrary indications. Our motto is to triumph or die.”
April 28. Gómez issues a circular, which announces that only the property of owners who have shown hostility to the Revolution will be destroyed. Properties from owners that support the revolution will be spared.
May 2. The New York Herald publishes an article by Martí in which he states; "Cuba wishes to be free in order that here Man may fully realize his destiny, that everyone may work here, and that her hidden riches may be sold in the natural markets of America… The Cubans ask no more of the world than the recognition of and respect for their sacrifices."
May 4. In La Mejorana, Martí, Gómez and Maceo meet to decide on the war strategy. Martí is elected as supreme leader of the revolution abroad and in nonmilitary matters. The issue of civil versus military control of the war remains unsettled; Maceo points out that dissension, petty rivalries and incompetence of the civil government during the Ten Year War had contributed to the ultimate collapse of the rebellion. He also makes it clear that he will not accept any position in the government.
May 18. In his last letter, José Martí writes that it is his duty “to prevent, by the independence of Cuba, the United States from spreading over the West Indies and falling, with that added weight, upon other lands of our America. All I have done up to now, and shall do hereafter, is to that end… I have lived inside the monster and know its insides.”
May 19. José Martí is killed in his first appearance on the battlefield at Dos Ríos in eastern Cuba. He is 42 years old. The rebels try to recover his body, but are unable to do so.
May 27. Spanish soldiers bury Martí’s body in Santiago de Cuba.
June 12. U.S. President Grover Cleveland proclaims "neutrality" in the conflict between Cuba and Spain. Foner: "Thus while Spain was freely buying from U.S. factories all the arms and munitions she needed in her effort to crush the Revolution, the government of the U.S. was doing all that was possible to prevent the Revolution from provisioning itself. This policy was a far cry from the strict neutrality proclaimed by President Cleveland…"
June 17. In Camagüey, Gómez destroys the town of Altagracia in a victory over Spanish forces. A few days later he defeats Martínez Campos at San Jerónimo.
June 30. Gómez instructs Maceo to begin preparing for an invasion of the Western segment of the island. It had been determined that lack of a Western invasion was one of the reasons for the failure of the Ten-Year War.
July. The Russian consul in Havana, De Truffin, reports:
“In spite of the tireless efforts of the famed commander (Martínez Campos) and reinforcements brought in from the metropolis (30,000 men) the uprising is still spreading. Another 10,000 men are due to arrive from Spain soon; it is asserted that the Marshal had asked for another 25,000 men in September.”
July 1. Gómez issues an official proclamation that "sugar plantations will stop their labors."
August. In Oriente, near Bayamo, the rebels celebrate another impressive victory. One account of the battle has it that Martínez Campos escapes alive by having himself slung in a hammock and carried on the shoulders of his men (as if wounded).
September 6. Salvador Cisneros Betancourt (the old and aristocratic revolutionist who was second president of the Republic of Cuba during the Ten Year War) writes to Maceo, hinting that he might offer the Negro General a high government post if Maceo supports him for President.
September 12. Maceo responds to the letter from Cisneros Betancourt; "Do not forget the nature of my temperament if it should again occur to you to speak to me of posts and destinies which I have never solicited. As you well know, I have the satisfaction of never having held a post through favor; on the contrary, I have exhibited manifest opposition to the slightest suggestion of such a thing. The humbleness of my birth kept me from placing myself at the beginning on the heights which others who were chieftains of the Revolution by birth."
September 13. In Jimaguayú, Camagüey, the Constituent Assembly, composed of delegates from Oriente, Camagüey and Las Villas, meet to organize the Republic of Cuba and its government.
The following officials are elected:
Salvador Cisneros Betancourt – President
Bartolomé Masó – Vice-President
Tomás Estrada Palma – Delegate Plenipotentiary and foreign representative
Maximo Gómez – General-in-chief of the Army
Antonio Maceo – Lieutenant-General
September 22. Maceo sends Estrada Palma a bank draft for more than $10,000 for arms and ammunitions.
October 10. In New York’s Chickering Hall, the anniversary of the Grito de Yara is celebrated. Manuel Sanguilly refers to Maceo as the “Bronze Titan.”
October 22. The invasion of the West begins.
October 27. Maceo’s column arrives in Pestán.
October 30. Maceo writes to Estrada Palma: "Please do your best to send us, as quickly as possible, the weapons and munitions ordered…"
November 6. Gómez issues a new order calling for “all plantations to be totally destroyed.”
November 21. Maceo writes to Manuel Sanguily in the U.S.: "We have not been very fortunate in the make-up of the new government." (You can see more of this letter in the Maceo Timeline).
November 30. In the town Lázaro López, in Camagüey, Gómez and Maceo (known to the Spaniards as the fox and the lion) combine their forces (totaling 2,600 men) and begin marching toward Las Villas and the west. On horseback, Gómez speaks to the assembled forces.
December. By the end of the year, 98,412 regular troops have arrived from Spain, and the volunteer forces on the island have increased to 63,000 men. These forces are steadily augmented by fresh troops from the Peninsula, and by the end of 1897 there are 240,000 regulars and 60,000 irregulars on the island fighting against the rebels.
December 3. The main rebel force crosses the Jatibonico River into Las Villas. Gómez learns that a Spanish column is escorting a well-supplied convoy not far from Iguará, and immediately plans a surprise attack. The ambush is discovered, and the battle of Iguará develops into the type of large-scale battle that Gómez wanted to avoid. The rebels are victorious, with heavy casualties on both sides.
December 8. Gómez writes Estrada Palma.
December 10. A fierce battle on the Manacal Heights lasts three days, with intervening nights of rest. As the rebels move westward, the Spaniards follow.
December 13. Under heavy artillery bombardment from Spanish General Oliver, the Cubans withdraw, leaving Maceo to fight a closely pursuing enemy. By late afternoon, the Spaniards have had enough and return to their base.
December. After the battles of Iguará and Manacal Heights practically exhaust the rebels' ammunition supplies, Gómez questions whether the western invasion can continue. Maceo refuses to consider abandoning the invasion. He tells his general that the invasion must continue, even if he has to clear his way with a machete.
In the second half of the month, the rebels cross the Hanabanilla River and advance into Matanzas. By this time, Gómez and Maceo have worked out a strategy of escape from larger forces in which several wide-ranging units are sent out from the main column to set fire to all the surrounding cane fields.
"The fires," writes Foner, "served a tactical as well as strategic purpose, since the billowing clouds of smoke created great uncertainty as to the positions of the insurgents. Invariably, the tactic was successful."
December 23. At Coliseo, several of Maceo's officers are killed in battle, and Maceo's horse is shot from under him. The rebels retreat.
December 27. During the famous "false retreat" in Las Villas, 4 of Maceo's soldiers invaded the home of the colonel of the Spanish volunteers. When one of the soldiers threatens one of the colonel's family members, he is killed. The colonel is brought before Maceo, expecting to be executed. Maceo, however, congratulates the man who had killed his soldier, and orders the three surviving soldiers to be shot. He makes it clear that the liberating army must respect family homes.

Struggle for Independence – 4

January 1. Martínez Campos seriously misinterprets rebel movement and reports to Havana that the rebels have been blocked and sent back to the eastern segment of the island. The Diario de la Marina carries this as front-page news. On the very same day, the rebel army enters Havana province, having left a wide smoking path of destruction through Matanzas.
January 3. Martínez Campos sends a cable to the Minister of War in Madrid: "The enemy keeps advancing through the lines north and south of Havana. A numerous separatist force is in San Jose de las Lajas, a town situated twenty-nine kilometers from Havana. It comes destroying all. They burn the railroad stations. There are also parties in Guara. Similarly insurrectionary forces are in Melena del Sur, not far from Batabanó. Numerous families reach Havana fleeing from nearby villages. The panic is extraordinary."
January 6. On "Three Kings' Day," the rebels enter Vereda Nueva, and are received with cheers of "Viva Cuba Libre!" and "Viva Maceo!"
January 7. Martínez Campos resigns his post as captain general, and Spain assigns General Valeriano Weyler y Nicolau as his replacement. In the meantime, Sabas Marín becomes the acting captain general.
Near the northwestern border of Havana, Gómez and Maceo hold a strategy conference. They agree to split their forces, Maceo will continue into Pínar del Rio, and Gómez will remain in Havana, with the largest portion of the forces.
January 8. Maceo's troops cross the trocha from Havana into Pínar del Rio.
January 10. Gómez issues a public circular announcing that the rebel army will respect the peaceful population and agriculture.
January 22. The ultimate goal of the western invasion is achieved. At three in the afternoon, Maceo's troops arrive in Mantua, the westernmost town on the island. The people gather on the street to see the famed rebel, and the troops form a parade to make a grand entrance, led by the newly formed cavalry of natives from the province. At official ceremonies held the following day, Maceo is offered a champagne toast, which he declines, saying, "I do not drink any kind of liquor." He is later offered a cigar from Vuelta Abajo, which he, again graciously refuses, stating, "I am sorry not to be able to please you, but I do not smoke."
February 11. General Valeriano Weyler Y Nicolau arrives in Cuba. His highest military priority is the destruction of Maceo.
February 17. Weyler announces the policy of re-concentration. Inhabitants living outside fortified areas are given eight days to move into the towns occupied by the Spanish troops. After that time, anyone caught outside the concentrated areas is to be considered an enemy sympathizer and killed.
February 19. Gómez and Maceo meet in Soto to discuss Weyler's policy of re-concentration.
March 5. Maceo returns to Matanzas, outmaneuvering a powerful column sent by Weyler against him.
March 10. Maceo joins Gómez at El Galeón. It is agreed that Maceo will continue moving westward, and Gómez will continue operating in the central part of the island. This is their last meeting.
March 20. In a battle at El Rubí, despite a lack of ammunition, Maceo's column forces a numerically superior opponent to retreat.
April 18 – 26. Waiting for supplies, Maceo takes refuge in the Tapia Mountains. The Spaniards repeatedly attack this natural defense position, but are repelled each time. Learning that an expedition with war materials from the U.S. (on the ship "Competitor") Maceo outmaneuvers the enemy. At Cacarajícara, a battle against a column of nearly 1,000 soldiers, led by General Suárez Inclán, cuts down his company to 170 men. At a critical point in the battle, Rebel Colonel Juan E. Ducasse arrives with rifles, reinforcements, and 1,000 rounds of ammunition. The enemy is forced to retreat.
May 23. Maceo attacks the fortified town of Consolación del Sur, leaving it in flames.
May 25. Maceo achieves another victory, this time over the forces of General Valdés, the supreme commander of the province.
June. After learning that the U.S. and Spain are discussing the possibility of granting Cuban autonomy and not independence, Maceo writes to Perfecto Lacoste: "The (North) Americans and Spaniards can make whatever agreements they wish, but Cuba will be free in a short while and can laugh at the negotiations which do not favor its independence."
June 6. From Havana, London Times correspondent Colonel Charles E. Akers, writes:
"With an army of 175,000 men, with materials of all kinds in unlimited quantities, beautiful weather, little or no sickness among the troops, in a word, with everything in his favor, General Weyler has been unable to defeat the insurrectionists.
In the province of Pinar del Río, at some eighteen miles from the center of the Spanish lines, is encamped since last March the rebel General Antonio Maceo with his army. Here the rebels are almost in view of 60,000 Spanish soldiers. There is no pretense of not knowing the position of Maceo since a Spanish general indicated to me the precise point where the insurrectionist encampment was. The frequently repeated Spanish boast that Maceo will not be able to cross the trocha is already worn out and useless. Undoubtedly, whenever it suits the insurrectionary leader, he will succeed in breaking the line, and meanwhile, it is enough for him to stay where he is and compel more than a third of the entire Spanish army to remain on the defensive."
June 19. Weyler's forces attack Maceo at San Gabriel de Lombello.
June 24. On the fifth day of battle (at San Gabriel de Lombello), Maceo sustains his 24th battle wound when a rifle bullet breaks a bone in the lower portion of one of his legs. He is taken to the house of a rebel civilian in the Rosario Mountain range for 9 days to recover.
July. Early in the month, Jose Maceo resigns his post as Commander of the Oriente province (in order to allow Calixto Garcia to take over).
July 5. José Maceo is killed at the battle of Loma del Gato.
August 7. Composer Ernesto Lecuona is born in Guanabacoa.
September 18. Maceo meets the expedition of Colonel Francisco Leyete Vidal and obtains 500,000 rounds of ammunition, one thousand rifles, two thousand pounds of dynamite, one cannon with 100 cannon shells and three American artillerymen. He is also joined by Máximo Gómez' young son, Francisco "Panchito" Gómez Toro.
Foner: "The happy shouts and vivas of the mambises over the arrival of the war material abruptly ended when they notice General Maceo's face. He had been handed a copy of the Boletín de Guerra of July 15 which featured the news that on July 5, Jose Maceo had been killed in battle at Loma del Gato in Oriente. It may seem incredible that it took so long for the news to reach Maceo. Actually, it was an indication of the indifference of the revolutionary government to their greatest warrior. They had simply neglected to inform Maceo. Indeed, the only communication Maceo received from government officials during the entire campaign in the West was not congratulations for his remarkable achievements against the enemy, but a criticism for making a number of appointments and conferring ranks 'without first submitting them to the Governing Council for their approval.'" [From: The Spanish-Cuban-American War and the Birth of U.S. Imperialism, Vol. 1]
September 23 – 24. In Montezuelo, Maceo defeats larger Spanish forces, suffering 68 rebel casualties.
September 25. Another victorious clash for Maceo's troops at Tumbas de Estorino.
October 1. At Ceja del Negro, Maceo's troops are trapped by three Spanish columns. After three days of fighting, the rebels are victorious, but suffer 277 casualties. Maceo is left with 200 fighting men.
October 14. De Truffin writes: "At present being better organized and well supplied with arms and ammunition, they (the rebels led by Maceo) have altered their tactics, and are offering resistance to the royal troops. Five rather serious clashes have taken place in the last few days. The bitterness with which both sides fought is an indication that the war has entered an entirely new and more active phase."
October 27. In San Cristóbal, Maceo makes his last address to his troops. He urges them to take courage and to prepare for whatever sacrifices are necessary to win independence.
October 29. In El Roble, Maceo receives a letter from Máximo Gómez requesting his urgent return to Camagüey. He learns that Gómez has been removed from his post as General-in-Chief of the revolutionary armies.
November 9. In an encounter with Weyler's forces in the valley of Tapia, Maceo looses 77 soldiers.
November 25. Maceo interviews three soldiers who claim to have knowledge of a weak spot in the Trocha, but is not satisfied with their answers.
December 4. Maceo and 17 men circle the trocha by sea in the port of Mariel, which requires four trips of the small boat. At times they come within sight of a Spanish garrison, and later they take refuge in La Merced, an abandoned sugar mill.
December 6. Still waiting for a rebel unit with horses, Maceo gives the order to begin marching toward the sugar mill Garro.
December 7. Antonio Maceo is killed in the battle of Punta Brava in Western Cuba. Also killed is Panchito Gómez Toro.
December 8. Antonio Maceo and Panchito Gómez are buried in Cacahual, in Santiago de las Vegas.

February 7. Dr. Ricardo Ruiz, a Cuban-born, naturalized American citizen, is arrested in his home in Cuba, accused of having participated in the derailment, capture and robbery of a passenger train.
February 9. Gómez sends a letter to U.S. President Grover Cleveland.
February 17. Dr. Ricardo Ruiz is found dead in a 6 x 8 cell in a Cuban prison. His death is widely reported in the New York World and the New York Journal.
May. By now, the Spanish offensive has lost much of its momentum.
September. A constitutional convention takes place in La Yaya, and a new government is elected, including General Bartolomé Masó as President and Domingo Méndez Capote as Vice-President.
December. As the rebels declare success, President McKinley refuses to recognize Cuban Independence.
December 17. In the Journal of the Knights of Labor, J. Syme-Hastings writes about Anotnio Maceo.

Struggle for Independence – 5

January 24. The U.S. sends the battleship USS Maine to Havana.
February 15. The USS Maine explodes in Havana's harbor. The U.S. blames Spain, and so begins the Spanish-Cuban-American War.
February 25. Acting on his own initiative, Assistant Secretary of State Theodore Roosevelt puts the U.S. Navy on full alert.
April 20. The U.S. Congress adopts the Teller Amendment, which disclaims intention to take control of Cuba after the war. Two days later the President issues a proclamation calling for 125,000 volunteers for the Armed Forces. The number is later increased to 200,000.
April 25. The U.S. President approves the declaration of war issued by congress. In Cuba, this is regarded as an intervention in Cuba’s war of independence.
June 10. A battalion of U.S. Marines camps in Guantánamo Bay.
June 22. The Chicago Tribune argues for Cuba, Puerto Rico and the Philippines: "All of these islands will belong to us by sovereign right of honorable conquest. They will be American soil from the moment the Stars and Stripes float over them. Annexation of all three is the natural outcome"
July 1-2. After serious losses to U.S. troops in San Juan, Lawton, and El Caney, the entire Spanish squadron is annihilated. A few days later, Santiago is occupied by American forces, which forbid the Cuban rebels from entering.
July 3. In Manila, U.S. naval forces unanimously defeat the Spanish fleet.
July 16. In Santiago de Cuba, Spain and the U.S. sign a peace agreement.
July 28. The Cleveland Leader publishes an editorial in favor of annexing Cuba: "While our government disavowed a purpose of conquest, it may be absolutely necessary for us to keep Cuba and make it a part of the United States."
August 12. In Washington, Spain and the U.S. sign a bilateral armistice. Cuba is not represented at the negotiations.
September 27. U.S.-owned Island of Cuba Real Estate Company opens for business.
October 1. A meeting begins in Paris between Spain and the U.S. to work out terms for ending the war. Neither Cubans nor Filipinos are invited.
October 27. Spain accepts the American position on the Cuban debt: neither the U.S. nor a Cuban government will be required to assume this debt (mostly from the war).
November. In American Federationist, Samuel Gompers writes: "Where has flown this great outburst of our sympathy for the self-sacrificing and liberty loving Cubans? Is it not strange that now, for the first time, we hear that the Cubans are unfit for self-government?"
December 1. The Cuban Educational Association (formed by the Wood administration) reports that only certain Cubans are considered fit to be "Americanized," and that darker skinned Cubans "could not gain admission" to many American universities and colleges.
December 10. In the last session of the peace conference, Spain and the U.S. sign the Treaty of Paris. The U.S. is granted control of four new territories: Cuba, Puerto Rico, the Philippines and Guam. Although the treaty officially grants Cuba independence, the U.S. flag, not the Cuban flag, is raised over Havana, and Cuban representatives are not allowed at the signing.
Máximo Gómez refuses to go to Havana for the raising of the American flag at Morro Castle. "Ours," he writes, "is the Cuban flag, the one for which so many tears and blood have been shed… we must keep united in order to bring to an end this unjustified military occupation."
During a debate over Hawaii, Senator Pettigrew discusses the reality of Manifest Destiny:
“Throughout all recorded time manifest destiny has been the murderer of men. It has committed more crimes, done more to oppress and wrong the inhabitants of the world than any other tribute to which mankind has fallen heir. Manifest destiny has caused the strong to rob the weak and has reduced the weak to slavery. Manifest destiny built the feudal castle and supplied the castle with its serfs. Manifest destiny impelled republics that have heretofore existed and perished to go forth and conquer weaker races and to subject their people to slavery, to impose taxation against their will, and to inflict governments odious to them. Manifest destiny is simply the cry of the strong in justification of their plunder of the weak.”
December 11. Calixto García dies in Washington, after being sick with pneumonia. He is temporarily buried in Arlington National Cemetery.
December. At the urging of Estrada-Palma, the Cuban Revolutionary Party, founded by José Martí, is dissolved.

January 1. The U.S. installs a provisional military government in Cuba led by General John R. Brooke. In the throne room at the Palace of the Captain-General, Spanish General Adolfo Jiménez Castellanos  turns Cuba over to the U.S. The Spanish flag comes down and the U.S. flag is raised.
January 10. The first organized work stoppage takes place on the dockyard in Cárdenas. The workers demand to be paid in U.S. dollars, not in Spanish dollars.
January 16. Port workers in Havana walk out on strike and ferry operators join in. They demand a pay increase, overtime pay, and double-pay for Sundays, holidays and for working during the night. Employers promise to revise the pay scale, and work resumes.
February 6. The U.S. Congress ratifies the Treaty of Paris, as newspapers in all states bring the news that war has broken out in the Philippines.
February 17. U.S. forces in Cuba number almost 45,000, including 15 regiments of infantry and four battalions of artillery. "Larger than the entire body of men who engaged in fighting against Spain," writes Foner in The Spanish-Cuban-American War, Vol. 2.
March. Street laborers in Matanzas go on strike. Major Cartwright delivers a speech announcing plans to continue with strikebreakers, and that if anyone interferes, they are to be "court-martialed and shot."
March. Street laborers in Matanzas go on strike. Major Cartwright delivers a speech announcing his plans to continue operations with strikebreakers, and that if anyone interfered, they "would be court-martialed and shot."
March 29. A manifesto addressed "To the People of Cuba," is distributed throughout Havana announcing the birth of the Partido Socialista Cubano (Cuban Socialist Party).
April 11. The Spanish-American war formally ends with the exchange of ratifications of the peace treaty by the U.S. and Spain.
April 15. Writing in the Indianapolis News, American Negro leader Booker T. Washington: "My General feeling is that Cubans ought to be left to govern themselves. In bringing Cuba into our American life we must bear in mind that, notwithstanding the fact that the Cubans have certain elements of weakness, they already seem to have surpassed the Untied States in solving the race problem, in that they seem to have no race problem in Cuba. I wonder if it is quite fair to the white people and the colored people in Cuba to bring them into our American conditions and revive the race antagonism so that they will have to work out anew the race problem that we are now trying to solve in this country."
June. Robert P. Porter's book, Industrial Cuba, is published. Porter is a personal friend of McKinley and the book strongly favors annexing Cuba.
June 13. Recruiting posters for the U.S. Army hang in postal offices throughout the U.S., asking young men to join "Uncle Sam's Personally Conducted Excursion to his new possessions Manila, Cuba and Porto Rico."
Summer. The American Anti-Imperialist League urges the end of the occupation and the beginning of self-government for Cuba.
August 14. In Massachusetts, the Worcester Gazette reports "newspapers are receiving printed sheets containing the argument that Cubans want to be annexed."
August 27. In Havana, the masons go on strike ask for higher wages and an 8-hour workday.
September. A manifesto appears in Havana signed by a group of Cuban working class leaders complaining of current working conditions.
September 1. At a meeting in Havana, the General League of Cuban Workers is formed, with Enrique Messonier as president and Pedro A. Navarro as secretary. The program stresses five issues: 1) That the Cuban workers in general should enjoy the same advantages and guarantees enjoyed by foreigners in different industries in this country. 2) To achieve employment in all workshops of Cuban émigrés forced to return to the island. 3) To initiate a campaign on behalf of the moral and material interests of Cuban women workers. 4) To provide for the welfare of all orphans (whether or not they were children of the Liberators) who were crowding the streets in great numbers. 5) To be prepared for defense against every harmful element that tries to place obstacles in the path of the advance of the Cuban Republic.
September 11. At a banquet in his honor in Santiago de las Vegas, Havana, General Maximo Gómez is moved to tears recalling the brave acts of Antonio Maceo and the death of his son Francisco "Panchito" Gómez.
September 12. In an interview that appears in the Chicago Chronicle, General Carlos García warns that Cubans would not surrender their independence, and that if the U.S. attempts to annex the island, it would meet with armed resistance.
September 19. At a meeting in Havana's Workers' Circle, representatives from all labor organizations in the city vote unanimously to call a general strike (in support of the ongoing mason's strike) the following morning at 6 a.m.
September 24. Up to 8,000 workers gather in the Little Square Balboa in Havana to hear union leaders speak in support of the masons. A committee is elected to direct the general strike.
October. The masons become the first workers in Cuba to win a working day of eight hours.
November 1. General Maximo Gómez is quoted in the New York Times:
"Many of those who now occupy public positions in Cuba are convinced, in all good conscience that they are serving the interests of the island, but they are really mistaken. They are actually serving the cause of intervention, which, though accepted and even asked for, it will be found difficult to terminate on conditions which will enable them to transfer their services to the Cuban republic. They should bear in mind that they have taken an oath.
"The honorable Cuban should place before himself the ideal of the republic, remembering that everyday on which the sun sets until the establishment of the republic is an injury to the Cubans."
November 14. An editorial in Havana's La Discusión, states that "Cuba is not American territory, it is not a State, nor a conquered country like Puerto Rico or the Philippines, which was ceded to the United States without reserve condition or restrictions. Regarding Cuba Spain did nothing but renounce its sovereignty and titles."
November 19. A mass funeral is held for Enrique Creci, working-class hero of the Cuban army killed in action against Spain. The police attack the precession (thousands of workers and union leaders from every trade union in Cuba, led by Salvador Cisneros Betancourt and Juan Gualberto Gómez) and many workers are cruelly beaten.
November 29. Between this day and December 7, a series of rallies and protest meetings are held, at which resolutions are adopted calling for the speedy end of the Occupation.
December 5. U.S. president McKinley, in his annual address to Congress, leaves the door open for U.S. annexation of Cuba. "Whether these ties shall be organic or conventional," he says, "the destinies of Cuba are in some rightful form and manner irrevocably linked to our own, but how and how far is for the future to determine in the ripeness of events." The annexationist movement in the U.S. is re-energized by McKinley's words.
The 1899 census reveals that Cuba's total population is 1,572,797.

March. In an article for the Atlantic Monthly, Richard B. Olney, Cleveland's Secretary of State and a Wall Street lawyer and financier, writes that Cuba is already annexed to the U.S. since "the Spanish War ended in the acquisition of Cuba…" He advices Congress to make "Cuba in point of law what she already is in point of fact, namely United States territory."
April. A delegation of Cubans petition Governor General Wood asking that the use of terms such as "mulatto, colored and brown" (to distinguish people by their skin color) no longer be used in official documents. The petitioners urge Wood to issue a decree making the use of such terms illegal, and that only the word "citizen" is used. Wood ignores the petition.
April 13. From an editorial in the New York Sun; "the attitude of the people of Cuba toward annexation seems to be this in brief: the wealth and intelligence of the island are generally in favor of it, and the agitators and their tools, the ignorant Negroes, are opposed to it."
April 18. Electoral law is passed (based on U.S. Secretary of War Elihu Root's plan for a restricted franchise). Potential voters must be male, over twenty-one years of age, citizens of Cuba according to the terms of the Treaty of Paris, and they must fulfill at least one of three alternative requirements: be able to read and write; own property worth $250 in U.S. gold; or have served in the Cuban army prior to July 18, 1898, with an honorable discharge. These restrictions disfranchise large sectors of the population.
May. A serious scandal breaks out in the Cuban postal system, and postal officials Charles F. Neely and higher-ranking postal officers such as Director-General Estes G. Rathbone are accused of embezzling over $100,000 of Cuban money.
May 16. Senator Augustus O. Bacon of Georgia, speaks to the U.S. Senate attacking the Cuban occupation. He accuses the military government of spending many times more for the comfort of American soldiers in the island than would have been the case had they been quartered in the U.S. This, he says, is an extravagant and wasteful use of Cuban funds. He adds that such a large occupation is not only unnecessary, but illegal. He charges that the delay (there has been peace for nearly two years) is in order to find an open door for annexation.
June 16. The first municipal elections since the war are held. The results are a stunning defeat for annexationists. The Cuban National Party, made up of the revolutionary element, takes the most votes in almost every city. The Republican Party, also opposing annexation and containing a large number of black voters, wins significant races. And the Democratic Union Party, representing Cuban moneyed interests and openly favoring annexation to the U.S., does not win in any city.
July 25. General Leonard Wood (the American military governor, publishes a civil order for the establishment of an election of delegates to a Cuban Constitutional Convention.
August 13. General Wood begins a tour of Cuba designed to promote the election of the "best men" to serve as delegates to the Constitutional Convention. He warns Cubans not to select "the disturber and malcontent," and to "bear in mind that no Constitution which does not provide a stable government will be accepted by the U.S." He adds that Cubans should select men of "science and experience." Cisneros responds: "General Wood, on the eve of an election in the U.S., would not have dared to utter such words before a body of electors. Why should he, in Cuba, endeavor to restrict the free suffrage, insult the people, and wound their just sense of dignity and manhood by such a threat?"
September 16. In The New York Times, the special correspondent in Havana observes, "Maceo, one of the Cuban idols in the war of independence, was a black man. All Cubans, of whatever color, look upon him as one of the noblest of their countrymen."
September 25. At the Marquette Club in Chicago, U.S. Senator Albert J. Beveridge suggests that the Teller Amendment should not be kept. "The resolution hastily passed by all parties in Congress, at an excited hour, was an error which years of time, propinquity of location, common commerce, mutual interests and similar dangers surely will correct."
November 1. Writing in The Independent, Leonard Wood states, "there is no distrust of the U.S. on the part of Cubans… they have perfect confidence that this country will redeem every promise it has made."
November 5. In the Teatro Martí in Havana, 31 delegates representing six Cuban provinces meet to begin the sessions of the Cuban Constitutional Convention. Delegates include Gonzalo de Quesada, General Emilio Núñez, Salvador Cisneros Betancourt, General Julio Sanguily, Alfredo Zayas Alfonso, José Miguel Gómez, Juan Gualberto Gómez, Manuel Sanguily, and Domingo Mendez Capote.
November 6. In the U.S., President McKinley and vice-president Theodore Roosevelt are re-elected by 53 percent of the votes.
December. Charles M. Pepper, Cuban correspondent of the New York Tribune and the Washington Star, declares, "the colored race in Cuba has reached a pretty unanimous decision that its future is not promising if the island becomes a State in the Union. That is the present sentiment, and it is in itself powerful enough to dampen any annexation movement."

January 30. The finished draft of the Constitution of the Republic of Cuba is published. The document is basically modeled after the U.S. Constitution. The government consists of legislative, executive, and judicial branches, a president and Vice-President, a Congress composed of a Senate and a House of Representatives and a Supreme Court. The President and Vice-President are to be elected for four years by popular vote. The Senate consists of six members from each of the six departments; Havana, Pinar del Rio, Santa Clara, Puerto Principe, Matanzas and Santiago-elected for six years, one-third going out of office every two years, and chosen by an electoral college.
February. A series of strikes break out among workers of the Central Railway of the Cuban Company.
February 11. The Cuban Constitution is adopted.
February 27. The U.S. Senate votes on the Platt Amendment, and it passes, as submitted, by a vote of 43 to 20.
March 1. The U.S. House of Representatives passes the Army Appropriation bill with the Platt Amendment as a rider. The vote is 161-137, almost exclusively on party lines.
The amendment stipulates that Cuba has only a limited right to conduct its own foreign and debt policy. It also gives the U.S. an open door to intervene in Cuban affairs. The Isle of Pines (now called Isla de Juventud) is deemed outside the boundaries of Cuba until the title to it is adjusted in a future treaty. Cuba also agrees to sell or lease to the U.S. "lands necessary for coaling or naval stations at certain specified points to be agreed upon."
March 2. At night, over 15,000 Cubans gather for a huge protest torchlight precession. The crowd, representing all classes and political groupings, descents on the Convention, and then moves on to the Governor's palace.
March 3. Parades and meetings with waving Cuban flags and banners denounce the Platt Amendment and continue from Havana to Santiago de Cuba, with increasing numbers of participants.
March 6. Wood writes to Secretary of War, Elihu Root: "Can you indicate our action in case the Cuban Convention should refuse to accept the Platt Amendment?" [Root responds on March 20.]
March 10. In the U.S., The State newspaper reprints an editorial from La Patria, the journal founded by José Martí. It states, in part, "There is no room for doubt that the passage of the Platt Amendment results form the error that the Cuban people will accept it. It is incumbent upon us, therefore, to devote ourselves from this day on to energetically protest against this false supposition, because we entertain no doubt that once the American people become convinced of the real facts, they will retrace their steps, which will be equivalent to a return to the path of honor, as the good name and fame of the American nation are now subject to mistrust, thanks to the policy of audacity, snares, cupidity, and shame which has been systematically carried out by its directors."
March. In spite of the growing number of protests and demonstrations all over Cuba, Wood keeps assuring Washington that there's nothing to worry about, that "the people who matter, the conservative element-business men and wealthy Spaniards-favor adoption of the Platt Amendment."
March 13. Under orders from General Wood, the Rural Guard arrests 51 Spanish, Cuban and American strikers. Juan Rodriguez Martinez, the chief leader of the railroad construction workers, is sentenced to eight years in jail for "mutiny."
March 15. At the Cuban Constitutional Convention taking place in Havana, Salvador Cisneros Betancourt delivers his "Voto Particular Contra La Enmienda Platt." It charges that the U.S. is exercising "the power of the strong against the weak," and that the U.S. had departed from "the principles of justice in its arbitrary occupation of the Philippines and Puerto Rico," and is seeking to do the same in Cuba.
March 20. U.S. Secretary of War Elihu Root responds to Wood's letter of March 6: "The Platt Amendment is, of course, final and the members of the Convention who may be responsible for refusing to establish relations on that basis will injure only themselves and their country. If the Convention takes such a course it will have failed to perform the duty for which it was elected and the duty must be performed by others."
March 21. In the newspaper La Discusion, Manuel Sanguily clarifies his views on the Platt Amendment (earlier distorted by American Governor General Wood): "Independence with some restrictions is preferable to a continuance of military rule, which would surely follow a rejection of the Platt Amendment…"
March 26. At the Cuban Constitutional Convention, Juan Gualberto Gómez presents what Historian Philip S. Foner describes as "the best expression of Cuban feeling throughout the entire period following the receipt of the American proposals… and one of the finest expressions in the literature of anti-imperialism."
April 5. The Havana newspaper La Discusión runs a cartoon titled "The Cuban Cavalry." It shows a figure that represents "the Cuban people" crucified between two thieves, who look just like Leonard Wood and William McKinley, while Senator Platt stands by dressed like a Roman soldier, holding a spear that is labeled "Platt Amendment." Wood immediately closes and seals the offices of the newspaper. The editor and the cartoonist are arrested for criminal libel. (Wood is persuaded to release them the following day.)
April 6. At the Cuban Constitutional Convention in Havana, a motion to accept the Platt Amendment is defeated 24 to 2.
April 8. La Discusión resumes publication. Its new headline reads: "Suppressed by Weyler, October 23, 1896; Suspended by Wood, April 6, 1901."
April 12. At the Cuban Constitutional Convention, a vote on the non-acceptance of the Platt Amendment is carried 18 to 10.
April 25. In Washington, a commission of Cuban delegates meets with President McKinley and Secretary of War Elihu Root. In a long afternoon conference, Root claims that he U.S. has "always been a champion of Cuban independence" and has "never imposed obstacles in her path when Cuba sought to achieve liberation from Spain." [This is not true.] Root adds that the controversial Article 3 of the Platt Amendment (giving the U.S. the right to military intervention) is simply "an extension of the Monroe Doctrine."
May 28. By a vote of 15 to 14, the Cuban Constitutional Convention accepts the Platt Amendment (with the deciding vote cast by Méndez Capote). The document includes not only the exact words of the Platt Amendment, but Article I of the Treaty of Paris, as well as long extracts from Root's various explanations, including the assurance that" the Platt law has for its object the guaranteeing of the independence of Cuba, and does not mean interference with its government or the exercise of a protectorate or of sovereignty…"
Root immediately rejects the actions of the Cuban Constitutional Convention, and insists that Cubans can't look forward to the withdrawal of the American army until the Platt Amendment is adopted verbatim, with no changes or additions. Foner: "…the Administration's own explanations of the Amendment had been repudiated when the Cubans used it…"
June 12. The Cuban Constitutional Convention accepts the Platt Amendment verbatim by a vote of 16 to 11. Voting against are: Juan Gualberto Gómez (Santiago), Salvador Cisneros Betancourt (Puerto Principe), José S. Aleman (Santa Clara), Manuel R. Silva (Puerto Principe), Rafaell Portuondo (Santiago), Eduardo Tamayo (Santiago), Rafael Manduley (Santiago), Alfredo Zayas (Havana), José Lacret Morlot (Havana), Luis Fortún (Matanzas), and José Fernández de Castro (Santiago). Nine of the eleven come from Oriente province, "seat of the most revolutionary fervor during the first and second wars of independence."
June 27. In the Independent, Orville H. Platt, one of the authors of the Platt Amendment, states that Cubans are incapable of stable self-government. "In many respects," he writes, "they are like children."
July. The North American Trust Company of New York, which acted as the occupying government's fiscal agent, begins to operate under the name of Banco Nacional de Cuba (National Bank of Cuba).
August 18. A group of prominent Cubans send Estrada Palma a letter urging him to seek the presidency. Led by José Miguel Gómez, the group includes Domingo Méndez Capote, General Ruiz Rivera, Pedro Betancourt and Diego Tamayo.
September 27. At the home of General Emilio Núñez, Estrada Palma accepts (by letter dated Sept. 7, 1901) the offer to run for president of the Republic of Cuba. On the issue of the Platt Amendment, he writes, "The Cuban government in making a treaty should try to interpret the Platt Amendment so as to give the meaning most favorable to the interests of Cuba and to her sovereignty and independence. She will fulfill the treaty but expects the United States to do likewise and to respect her independence which is recognized in one of the clauses of the Platt Amendment in the most solemn manner." Estrada Palma is endorsed by a vote of 23 to 2, with Juan Gualberto Gómez and Ezequel García in opposition.
September 28. A manifesto, written by Domingo Méndez Capote and Alfredo Zayas is widely distributed throughout the island urging the election of Estrada Palma as the first President of the Republic. The document is signed by 32 distinguished Cubans, including General Máximo Gómez, Manuel Sanguily and Gonzalo de Quesada.
October 28. General Wood writes to U.S. President Roosevelt, telling him that Bartolomé Masó (who opposes the Platt Amendment) has gained the support of "the radical and discontented element," especially Negroes, which creates "a highly dangerous situation." In appointing members of the Electoral Commission (Junta Central) to supervise the election, watch the voting and count the ballots, Wood picks men that support Estrada Palma. (This technique was used in the U.S. by political machines to steal elections.) When Masó writes to Washington demanding justice, he is told that Wood has complete authority to administer the presidential election as he sees fit. Charging that the election is rigged, Masó formally withdraws.
December 31. An uncontested election is held, and Estrada Palma, joint candidate of the National and Republican Parties (and an American citizen), is elected the first president of the Republic of Cuba.

February 24. On the seventh anniversary of Cuba's final revolt against Spain, the electoral college meets and elects Estrada Palma
March. The Insular Department of the U.S. War Department reports the discovery that yellow fever is transmitted by a certain species of mosquito. The report fails to mention Dr. Carlos Finlay, the Cuban who came up with the theory.
May 20. Tomás Estrada Palma is sworn in as president, and the Cuban flag is finally allowed to fly over Havana.
May 26. President Estrada Palma delivers his first message to Congress. He emphasizes the need for economy, not extravagance. "Public tranquility and security rest on the discipline of the country itself," he says.
July 4. U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt formally ends the war against the Filipinos. The war lasted three years, and required the services of 126,468 American soldiers; 4,234 were killed and 2,818 wounded. In loosing their independence, 16,000 Filipino soldiers are killed. Guerrilla resistance, however, continues for many years. [The last Filipino guerilla leader on the island of Luzon is captured and executed in October 1911.]
July 10. Literary figure Nicolás Guillén is born in Camagüey.
November 3. The second session of Congress opens with an address by President Estrada Palma. The president submits his first budget, at "a little less than $15 million.
November 24. A general strike is declared. The government calls on the rural guards to assist police to maintain order. There are various encounters between laborers and the police in which some men are killed and others wounded.

July 16. The U.S. and Cuba sign the Treaty of 1903, in which the U.S. relinquishes all claims to Isle of Pines (Isla de Pinos-now the Island of Youth.) The treaty is not ratified and expires, so a new treaty is signed on March 2 1904.
July 26. Four armed men try to start a revolt calling for "immediate pay for the army." One of the man is captured. The other 3 are killed on the next day.
September 13. A group of 60 to 70 men attempt to hold up the President during a visit to Santiago.
December 16. The U.S. signs a treaty with the Cuban government leasing Bahía Honda and Guantánamo Bay. There is no 99-year clause, and the treaty can only be terminated when both governments agree to the termination.
From Cuba: A Short History, edited by Leslie Bethell:
"Lacking any tradition of self-government or political discipline, with a low level of public education, and impoverished by the war, the Cubans found themselves trapped between growing American control of land and sugar, and Spanish domination of commerce, virtually guaranteed by the peace treaty between the USA and Spain. Politics thus became the principal avenue to economic improvement and access to national resources."
December 25. A new law calls for two upcoming elections: electoral boards will be elected first, and the main election will follow.

January 6. President Estrada Palma vetoes a bill (introduced by Senator Morúa Delgado) that would reestablish the lottery.
February. The first elections under the republic take place. According to Secretary of Agriculture Emilio Terry, the elections are "a farce represented with less shame than in the times of the colony." In Oriente, Senator Juan Gualberto Gómez (of the National Liberal Party) receives many more votes than were actually cast. The Conservative Republican Party claims victory throughout the island.
April. When the new Congress opens, House members of the National Liberal Party do not show up (in protest over the elections) and there's no quorum.
October 31. By this date, according to A History of the Cuban Republic, by Chapman, there's nearly $10 million in the Cuban treasury.

Struggle for Independence – 6

Americans purchase about $50 million worth of land in Cuba.
February. President Estrada Palma affiliates himself with the Moderate Party. They request that he appoint a new Presidential Cabinet.
February 2. Members of the President's Cabinet offer their resignation.
March 6. President Estrada Palma accepts the resignation of Cabinet members offered in February.The new Cabinet includes General Fernando Freyre de Andrade as Secretary of Government and Rafael Montalvo as Secretary of Public Works. The new Cabinet becomes known as the "Fighting Cabinet."
April 14. Six congressmen steal files that eventually lead to charges of criminality against members of the municipal council in Havana.
June 17. General Máximo Gómez dies in Vedado, Havana.
July 22. In San Antonio de Las Vueltas, Liberals burn down the government building.
September 4. In an interview, President Estrada Palma asserts that actions are more important than words. "What better or more eloquent platform can there be than deeds themselves?" he asks. "The past is a guarantee and sure pledge of the future."
September 22. Enrique Villuendas, leader of the Cienfuegos Liberal Party, is murdered shortly after writing a letter to General Gómez stating that his life is in danger. He becomes a martyr to the Liberals.
September 23. Preliminary elections are held, overseen by the government's rural guards and police, and many liberals are denied the right to vote. The Moderates claim victory.
September 27. Liberals publish a statement denouncing the Moderates and charging electoral fraud and violence. [On the same day, José Miguel Gómez resigns as chief of the Liberal party.]
October. Cases of Yellow Fever are reported. (Yellow Fever is banished by February 1908).
October 4. Fearing assassination, José Miguel Gómez sails to New York, where he denounces the Moderates and calls for U.S. intervention. "The United States has a direct responsibility concerning what is going on in Cuba," he says. "The United States is under the duty of putting an end to this situation…"
October 6. In New York, Gómez says "the moment has arrived for the United States and Cuba to give an authentic interpretation to the Platt Amendment."
October 7. The newspapers Diario de la Marina and El Mundo call for U.S. intervention in Cuba.
October. At least 150,000 fictitious names are registered to vote in the presidential election, and Liberals again accuse Moderates of fraud.
October. Liberals withdraw from the December elections claiming fraud.
November 21 and 27. Armed rebellions and uprisings occur in Havana at Alquízar, La Salud and Batabanó, and in Pinar del Río at San Juan and Martínez.
December 2. Liberals don't show up to vote. President Estrada Palma and the Moderates claim victory.

February 24. An attack on the Guanabacoa barracks, just outside Havana, results in the killing of several guards and the taking of arms and horses by the rebels.
April. The few remaining Liberals in congress try (in vain) to declare the elections illegal and void.
April. According to A History of the Cuban Republic, by Chapman, the balance in the Cuban treasury has grown to "approximately $25 million" by this date.
May 20. Tomás Estrada Palma is inaugurated as President for a second term.
July 1 1906 – June 30 1909
In this 3-year period, the government spends a total of $121,000,000 (which includes the tumultuous last months of Estrada Palma and part of the first year of José Miguel Gómez' presidency). In the previous 2 fiscal years the government spent an average of $26,000,000.
July 2. In Havana, a new lease is signed for Guantánamo Bay and Bahía Honda, for which the U.S. will pay $2,000 per year.
August 16. Open rebellion breaks out. By the end of the month armed conflicts are taking place in every province. This becomes known as "the little war of August."
"Once the revolt began," wrote Charles E. Chapman in A History of the Cuban Republic, "business men wanted intervention as soon as possible, but were afraid to speak in a loud voice, as their estates were at the mercy of the contending factions."
August 17. Rural guards engage in battle with rebels lead by General Mesa. Many rebel leaders are arrested throughout the island.
August 19. President Estrada Palma orders the arrest of General José Monteagudo (operating in Santa Clara), General Castillo Duany and Juan Gualberto Gómez (operating in Oriente).
August 20. Estrada Palma orders an increase of 2,000 men in the rural guards.
September. Rebel forces are in control of most of the island.
September 1. General Mario G. Menocal (a veteran of the War of Independence) meets with President Estrada Palma in Havana to discuss a compromise between the Liberals and the Moderates. Menocal suggests a plan in which all officials elected in 1905 resign except for the president and vice-president, and the Liberals unjustly removed from office are restored. He stipulates that the President see that necessary electoral and municipal laws are enacted and new elections held. A truce is enacted while the President considers the proposal.
September 8. Estrada Palma rejects Menocal's compromise proposal of September 1. He says he will not deal with the rebels until they lay down their weapons.
September 8. From Havana, Mr. Frank Maximilian Steinhart, American consul-general, sends a telegraph to the State Department in Washington:
"Absolutely confidential. Secretary of State, Cuba, has requested me in name of President Palma, to ask President Roosevelt send immediately two vessels; one to Habana, other to Cienfuegos; they must come at once. Government forces are unable to quell rebellion. The Government is unable to protect life and property. President Palma will convene Congress next Friday, and Congress will ask for our forcible intervention. It must be kept secret and confidential that Palma asked for vessels. No one here except President, Secretary of State, and myself know about it. Very anxiously awaiting reply."
September 10. Mr. Steinhart sends another message to Washington: "President here worried because no reply received my message, and asks war vessels be sent immediately."
September 10. Pamphlets distributed in Havana accuse Estrada Palma of stalling for time while working to secure U.S. intervention.
September 12. The U.S. cruiser "Denver" arrives in Havana harbor.
September 14. Estrada Palma addresses the Cuban congress.
September 14. U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt sends an open letter to Gonzalo de Quesada, the Cuban minister to Washington. He announces that he will send Secretary of War William H. Taft and Assistant Secretary of State Bacon to Cuba as special representatives. He also adds: "Whoever is responsible for armed revolt and outrage, whoever is responsible in any way for the condition of affairs that now obtain, is an enemy of Cuba. For there is just one way in which Cuban independence can be jeoparded, and that is for the Cuban people to show their inability to continue in their path of peaceful and orderly progress. Our intervention in Cuban affairs will only come if Cuba herself shows that she has fallen into the insurrectionary habit, that she lacks the self-restraint necessary to secure peaceful self-government, and that her contending factions have plunged the country into anarchy."
September 16. Aware that Taft and Bacon are on their way to Cuba, Estrada Palma issues a decree suspending hostilities and releases some political prisoners. Zayas comes out of hiding once its established that he will not be arrested.
September 19. Taft and Bacon arrive in Havana on the S.S. Des Moines. They spend several days in conversation with Liberal and Moderate Party leaders and soon come to believe (and communicate to the U.S. President) that the 1905 elections were dishonest.
September 20. U.S. sailors land in Cienfuegos.
September 24. Taft and Bacon submit their proposal to Estrada Palma (based on the compromise proposal suggested by Menocal on September 1). Estrada Palma completely rejects the plan.
September 26. Alfredo Zayas writes to Taft and Bacon: "The Government of Cuba having granted to the United States the right of intervention in accordance with Clause III of the Constitutional Appendix, it would seem but natural that the exercise of this right should not be hindered or resisted by the Government of Cuba."
September 28. Estrada Palma convenes congress and submits his own and his cabinet's immediate resignation. He hands custody of the treasury to Taft and Bacon.
September 29. U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt names Taft "U.S. Governor of Cuba." Taft, who has previously served as military Governor of the Philippines, publishes a Proclamation, thereby taking control of the Cuban government.
"When the intervention came," wrote Charles E. Chapman in A History of the Cuban Republic, "with the proclamation of September 29, it came, not as a result of official request, but because there was no Cuban government at all."
September. Theodore Roosevelt: "I am so angry with that infernal little Cuban republic that I would like to wipe its people off the face of the earth. All we have wanted from them is that they would behave themselves and be prosperous and happy so that we would not have to interfere. And now, lo and behold, they have started an utterly unjustifiable and pointless revolution and may get things into such a snarl that we have no alternative…"
October 2. Ex-president Estrada Palma leaves Havana by train. He takes his family to Matanzas. They later continue to his old home in Bayamo, Oriente.
October 9. U.S. citizen Charles E. Magoon arrives in Havana to replace Taft as head of the provisional government of Cuba.
"Magoon was an honest man," wrote Charles E. Chapman in A History of the Cuban Republic, "and as a provisional governor of Cuba he merely reflected Secretary Taft."
October 10. Taft issues an amnesty proclamation covering crimes committed in connection with the revolt.
Estrada Palma writes to a personal friend. The letter is later published in Cuban newspapers.
October 12. Taft issues a decree asking that congress will remain in recess during the continuance of the provisional government. This leaves the executive and legislative power in the hands of the provisional governor.
October 13. Magoon replaces Taft as Military Governor of Cuba. [On two other occasions, in 1912 and 1917, U.S. military forces take control of the Cuban government.]
October 23. U.S. President Roosevelt issues an executive order in which Cuba's provisional governor comes under the direct supervision of the Secretary of War (Taft).
October 24. All weapons turned in by the insurgents are towed out of Havana harbor and thrown into the Gulf of Mexico.
November. In Cuba, a movement starts asking that the island be declared a protectorate of the U.S. In the U.S., annexationists revive their enthusiasm for Cuba: Senator J.T. Morgan of Alabama renews his effort to have Isle of Pines declared U.S. territory, and Senator Cullom, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, again voices his support for annexation.
November 3. The Moderate Party is formally dissolved.
November 27. Magoon organizes a commission to investigate claims for damages due to the "little war of August."
December 3. Under instructions from U.S. President Roosevelt, Taft decrees that the terms of all representatives elected on December 1 1905 and March 19 1906 are terminated as of October 12 1906. [Senators elected in 1902 and 1904 continue to draw full salaries until their terms expire.] He adds that new elections are to be held when "tranquility and public confidence are fully restored."
December 24. Magoon appoints an Advisory Law Commission to study legislative matters. It consists of 9 Cubans and 3 Americans. Colonel Enoch Herbert Crowder serves as presiding officer. Among the Cuban members are Alfredo Zayas and Juan Gualberto Gómez (who serves as secretary of the commission.).

The Independent Party of Color is founded. Members accuse the Republic of betraying the black population.
March. Rumors circulate about a race war in Cuba.
April. In the U.S., the Supreme Court states that Isla de Pinos is de facto Cuban territory.
April 8. U.S. Secretary of War Taft visits Havana for two days.
May 8. Magoon orders the taking of a new census.
Summer. The Conservative Party is formally launched.
"It was clearly understood," wrote Chapman in A History of the Cuban Republic, "that the election was to be fought on the basis of personalities, not principles.
"By the spring of 1908 there were three principal parties in the field, the two Liberal groups and the Conservatives. The followers of Gómez, known popularly as 'Miguelistas,' called themselves the "Historic Liberals," claiming that the election of 1905 was no election and that therefore Gomez was still the true Liberal candidate. The Zayas supporters or 'Zayaistas,' retained the name Liberals, on the basis of the lapse of the Gomez candidacy and the superior claims of Zayas. Each group made formal nominations. The Conservatives preferred to await the result of the local elections before putting a presidential ticket in the field."
September 26. Seven men are arrested in Havana, including Juan Masso Parra, Lara Miret and Juan Ducasse. They are charged with conspiring "to burn property of foreigners," to incite a revolt. The government labels the "Masso Conspiracy" as an alien-conservative attempt to provoke annexation to the U.S.
September 30. The census count begins under the direction of Victor Hugo Olmstead.
October 31, 1907. The bill for the "revolution of 1906" comes in at $8,634,116.64. It includes 15, 027 claims for damages caused by the insurgents, and 6,557 claims of horses and mules taken or lost. "It's possible that Cuba paid at least ten million dollars to overthrow the Estrada Palma government," wrote Chapman, "which would have retired anyway some four months later than the intervention came to an end."
November 14. The census that began on September 30 is completed. Population has increased 30 percent since the census of 1899.
The Politics of Intervention by Allan Reed Millett
"…in 1907 Cuba had more doctors than butchers, more lawyers than civil engineers."

March. The results of the census are published. The population shows a 30% increase since 1899 for a total of 2,048,980. [Between 1901 and 1907, the birth rate jumped from 9.6 per thousand to 19.8.]
April. Magoon officially forms a Cuban army capable of defeating an insurrection.
August 7. "Agrupación Independiente de Color" is founded in Havana by Evaristo Estenoz, black journalist Gregorio Surín, and others. The name is later changed to "Partido Independiente de Color." They begin to publish the newspaper Previsión.
August 30. An excerpt from an article by Evaristo Estenoz, in the first issue of Previsión.
October 1. The rental of quarters for the Army of Cuban Pacification (U.S. soldiers) has surpassed $850,000. Chapman: "It is probable that Cuba paid at least ten million dollars to overthrow the Estrada Palma government, which would have retired anyway some four months later than the intervention came to an end."
November 4. Estrada Palma dies in his home in Bayamo, Oriente. Some say he died of a broken heart.
November 4. General José Miguel Gómez (a liberal) is elected President. He goes on to usher an era of public corruption, and is nicknamed "the shark."
November 7. Poet Emilio Ballagas is born in Camagüey, Cuba.
November 7. Governor Magoon signs a decree by which Estrada Palma's widow will receive a pension of $5,000 per year and $50 per month for each of his children.

January 26. A new law establishes an 8-hour workday for government employees and workers in hotels and restaurants.
January 28. The second U.S. military occupation of Cuba ends. Luis E. Aguilar in Cuba: 1933, Prelude to Revolution. (Pg 28): "Psychologically or, perhaps, sociologically speaking, the second intervention proved disastrous for Cuba."
January 29. In the Havana Post, Henry Watterson writes of Magoon: "His work here has been far-reaching. It has been all embracing. It has caused two blades of grass to grow where but one had grown before."
The Naval Conference of London establishes as international law that a blockade is an act of war.
February 25. President Gómez goes before Congress to request appropriations for the new army.
Liga Antiplastica is established in Havana to oppose the Platt Amendment.

February. The Partido Independiete de Color now includes 146 municipal committees: 53 in Santa Clara, 36 in Oriente, 32 in Havana, 13 in Pinar del Río, and 12 in Matanzas. (There are none in Camagüey.)
February 13. In the pro-Spanish paper El Diario de la Marina, Joaquín N. Aramburu states that if Cubans had listened to the wise calls for "an enlightened, scientific dictatorship," the island would have avoided the current "race problem."
April 22. Leaders of the "Partido Independiente de Color" are arrested in Havana, including: Estenoz, Julián Valdés Sierra, Antero Valdés Espada, Mauricio Lopez Luna, Agapito Rodriguez Pozo and José Inés García Madera.
April 23. Seventeen additional members of Partido Independiente de Color are arrested and brought to Havana. Bail is set at U.S. $10,000 for each of the 24 party leaders, and they're charged with "illicit association and conspiracy to foment an armed revolution." By the end of the year, over 220 party members have been arrested throughout the island and sent to Havana for prosecution.
May. Senator Martín Morúa Delgado introduces a law bans political parties based on race or religion. It becomes known as the Morúa Law. Societies of black Cubans, known as independistas, emerge to fight for the abrogation of this law. [Morúa Delgado dies shortly after being named Minister of Agriculture.]
May 20. Just before the largest ever harvest comes to an end, Afro-Cubans demonstrate en masse throughout the island. The movement is quickly crushed everywhere except Oriente province, especially in the Guantánamo region.
September 12. Attorney General Ponce releases 57 (of the 77) members of the Partido Independiente de Color still in jail, and reduces the bail for the remaining leaders to U.S. $3,000 each.
December. A verdict of Not Guilty is returned for the 20 members of the Partido Independiente de Color still charged with conspiracy. These include: Evaristo Estenoz Coromina, Agapito Rodríguez Pozo, José Inés García Madera, Julián Valdés Sierra, Francisco de Paula Luna, Claudio Pinto Iribarren, Gerónimo Morán Fernández, Ramon Calderon Moncada, and others.
December 8. A new law regulates the minimum salaries of those employed by the national government, provinces and municipalities.

September 11. Ignacio Villa is born in Guanabacoa, Havana. He is later known as Bola de Nieve.

April 23. Gerardo Machado resigns from the cabinet of President José Miguel Gómez in opposition to a "policy of partiality and proscription, prompted by purposes of hate and exclusion."
May 17. Evaristo Estenoz and Pedro Ivonnet (co-founders of the Partido Indepediente de Color, hold a meeting in Santiago. Estenoz calls for a massive, island-wide demonstration on May 20, the anniversary of the republic.
May 20. The planned demonstrations by members of the Partido Independiente de Color take place in Oriente and Santa Clara. The other provinces (Havana, Pinar del Rio, Matanzas and Camagüey) do not participate. Conservative estimates the following day report 300 to 600 participants in Oriente (most unarmed) and about 60 in Santa Clara.
Estenoz writes to the administrator of the U.S.-owned sugar mill Soledad requesting 25 guns and ammunition. He warns that he will destroy the estate's fields and mill.
From Cuba: A Short History, edited by Leslie Bethell:
"Equally alarmed, the United States government landed Marines in Daiquiri and announced further actions if the Cuban government failed 'to protect the lives or properties of American citizens'. Protesting against such intervention, President Gómez ordered the army to crush the rebellion. By June the leaders of the insurrection were dead and their followers killed or disbanded. The fear and resentment left by the episode hindered black participation in Cuban politics for many years."
May 21. Military troops are sent to Oriente.
May 24. The U.S. government authorizes marines to be dispatched from Guantánamo Naval Station to protect American lives and property. Three warships leave for Cuba: Prairie, Nashville, and Paducah.
May 25. Repression of the demonstration in Oriente has already started (even though there has been no property or physical damage), and newspapers have interpreted the events as a race war. "In short," wrote Aline Helg in Our Rightful Share, "repression preceded Independiente action… partly based on the belief that people of African descent were fanatic, violent, and irresponsible."
May 25. A note delivered to the Cuban Secretary of State by the American minister warns of another military intervention if "American lives and property" can't be protected.
May 26. At the House of Representatives, Campos Marquetti proposes amnesty for rebels who surrender within ten days.
May 27. General Monteagudo leaves from Havana for Oriente on the cruiser Cuba to take command of military forces.
May 27. An editorial in the conservative newspaper El Día, suggests that Cubans should follow a U.S. model of race relations, in which "blacks are mistreated and society is segregated." The author concludes, "dominated races do submit."
May 27. Congress passes a unanimous resolution that supports the government's policy in Oriente. (Marquetti's proposal of amnesty is ignored.)
May 31. In Oriente, General Carlos Mendieta invites journalists to witness "the efficiency of the army's new machine guns." He fires on an alleged rebel camp, and 150 peaceful Afro-Cuban peasants are killed or wounded. "Entire families were machine-gunned in their bohíos," wrote Aline Helg in Our Rightful Share. " According to one witness, the cries of the wounded resonated in the distance, and for days vultures circled over the area, attracted by the corpses."
May 31. In Oriente, independents attempt to show their determination with "limited sabotage." They burn a bridge, a post office, and the barracks of a rural guard, some wooden houses (which belong to the Santa Cecilia Sugar Company) and a railway station. This is the first act of violence instigated by the independents.
June 1. A manifesto issued by Juan Gualberto Gómez condemns the independents and shares the views of mainstream Afro-Cuban politicians, which includes concerns with the recent upsurge of white racism.
June 1. Independents take control of the town La Maya, where Afro-Cubans are the majority. Some buildings and houses burn.
June 2. In Oriente, Afro-Cuban leader Isidro Santos Carrera burns down the sugar mill La Maya.
June 3. President Gómez asks Congress for the right to declare martial law. The request is granted on June 5.
June 6. President Gómez asks the Cuban people to fight for "civilization" against the "ferocious savagery" of the independents. He invokes the image of a "raped teacher," which turns out to be a story fabricated by a conservative newspaper and not based on fact.
June 7. Congress approves 1 million pesos to put down the independents, and authorizes the president to enlist and organize men as necessary.
June 9. Beaupré requests the U.S. State Department to send a warship to Havana for "moral effect."
June 10. U.S. warships Washington and Rhode Island anchor in Havana. They stay until July 1. Their presence magnifies the negative rumors being spread.
June 12. Captain Arsenio Ortiz captures independent leader Gregorio Surín. 45 rebels are killed.
June 15. Genera Menocal, from his Chaparra sugar mill in Oriente, offers to supply the Army with 1,000 cavalrymen.
June 17. The French ambassador to Cuba sends home a report which reads in part: "The truth, I think, is as follows: There was an agreement between the President and the independents in view of a reelection; the president would appear as a savior, one would fight little, one would be content with threatening, and it would be mostly 'the cavalry of St. George' that would come into play."
June 20. Various newspapers accuse French consul Henri Bryois (who has opposed the massacre since the beginning) of conspiring with the independents. Members of the government express desire to expel him from the island, and the French Government eventually recall him.
June 22. By this date, over 700 rebels have surrendered, and it is estimated that about 500 returned home quietly.
June 25. General Monteagudo confronts rebels at Mícara. The government forces create such carnage that they can't tell how many rebels they killed.
June 27. Evaristo Estenoz is killed ("shot point blank"), along with 50 other men near Alto Songo. His body is displayed "covered with flies" in Santiago de Cuba.
July 15. Constitutional guarantees are restored in Oriente.
July 18. Ivonnet surrenders to authorities near El Caney. He is killed while "trying to escape." His body is publicly displayed. [Both Ivonnet and Estenoz were buried in common graves to prevent them from becoming symbols that could revive their memories.]
August 7. 500 Afro-Cuban prisoners are transferred to Havana.
December 27. In a formal treaty, the U.S. gives up its rights at Bahía Honda for increased rights in Guantánamo Bay.

May 20. General Mario G. Menocal, a conservative, is sworn in as President. He goes on to serve for two terms.

The Sociedad Cubana del Derecho Internacional begins an unrelenting campaign against the Platt Amendment, attacking “the humiliation of 1901.”

General Mario G. Menocal begins a second term as President under unusual circumstances.
February. Under the leadership of José Miguel Gómez, liberals rebel in several provinces, accusing the government of "persistent repression." They capture Santiago de Cuba and Camagüey.
March 2. Desidario Alberto Arnaz y de Acha III is born in Santiago de Cuba. He is later known as Desi Arnaz.
March 7. Surrounded by the army in Las Villas, José Miguel Gómez surrenders. By May, the rest of the rebellion is over.

January 12. Rolando Masferrer Rojas is born in Holguín, Oriente.

November. Cuban sugar sells for 7.28 cents per pound.

The Federación Obrera de la Habana (FOH) is founded by Alfredo López and Enrique Varona.
March. Cuban sugar sells for 13.54 cents per pound.
April. Cuban sugar sells for 19.56 cents per pound.
May. Cuban sugar sells for 22.51 cents per pound.The sugar crop of 1919-20 sells at $1,022,000,000 (more money than all the crops from 1900 to 1914).
June. The price of Cuban sugar drops to 20.31 cents per pound.
July. The price of Cuban sugar drops again to 18.56 cents per pound.
September. The price of sugar drops to 10.78 cents per pound.
October. The price of sugar drops to 9.00 cents per pound.
December. The price of sugar drops again to 5.51 cents per pound.
December 31. U.S. President Wilson orders General Enoch Crowder to Havana (without consulting the Cuban government) as his personal representative.
Alfredo Zayas claims victory in an ambiguous election.

January 6. General Enoch Crowder enters Havana aboard the battleship Minnesota. He establishes March 15 as the date of a new election.
May 20. Alfredo Zayas assumes the role of president.
June. José Miguel Gómez dies in New York.

Manuel Sanquily again speaks against the selling of Cuban lands to foreigners.
April 7. Ramon Santamaria (later known as Mongo Santamaria) is born in Jesus Maria, Havana.
June. Under Crowder's watchful eyes, a new Cabinet is formed and nicknamed the "honest cabinet."
June. Congress adopts a resolution condemning Crowder's interventions in Cuban affairs.
December. After a lecture in Havana by José Arce of the University of Buenos Aires, the Student Federation (Directorio de la Federación de Estudiantes) is formed.

January. Under the leadership of Julio Antonio Mella, students forcibly occupy Havana University and demand changes, including the modernization of textbooks, autonomy for the University and free education for all.
March 18. At a meeting of the Academy of Science in Havana, Rubén Martínez Villena (leader of the Communist Party) voices his displeasure of invited guest Erasmo Reguiferos Boudet, Secretary of State. Villena accuses the government of corruption and walks out of the meeting, followed by 13 others.
March 19. The Protest of the 13, a document signed by Villena and the 13 who walked out of the March 18 meeting, is published and circulated. Among those who signed the document are: Jorge Mañach, Juan Marinello, Francisco Ichaso, José Z. Tallet, Calixto Masó, Alberto Lamar Schweyer, Felix Lizaso and Rubén Martínez Villena.
October. The First National Congress for Students is held in Havana. 128 delegates from all over the country attend.
November 3. The José Martí Universidad Popular is created. It becomes a rallying point for young leftist intellectuals.

June. Gerardo Machado becomes the official candidate of the Liberal party.
July. Machado publishes a 10-point platform and the slogan "Water, Roads and Schools."
October 19. The newspaper El País reports a shooting attack (with one person killed) on the train carrying Menocal to Oriente Province.
November. Gerardo Machado is elected president, winning in 5 of the 6 provinces. He looses only in conservative Pinar del Rio.

Labor organizer Carlos Baliño, student organizer Julio Antonio Mella, and others found the Cuban Communist Party.
May 20. Gerardo Machado, takes over as Cuba's fifth president. Foner: "The first two years of his term fulfill many Cuban hopes. The government was honest; legislation to protect Cuban products, diversify agriculture and regulate the sugar industry was promulgated, while a vast programme of public works and road construction, including a central highway from Havana to Santiago de Cuba, gave jobs to thousands of Cubans."
August. Student leaders Balliño and Julio Antonio Mella call for a Congress of all Communist groups in the island.
September 25. Julio Antonio Mella is expelled from Havana University. He is later accused of terrorism and arrested.
December. Wilfredo Fernández, leader of the Conservative Party, proclaims that Machado's programs are so "full of patriotism" that to oppose them is "unpatriotic."

May 3. The Verdeja Act becomes law. It limits sugar crops for 1926 to 10 percent less than the previous year, and it prohibits the cutting of virgin forests for the purpose of planting more cane.
August 18. Orlando Bosch Ávila is born in Cuba.
The total value of sugar exports to the United States falls to less than $2 million.

"Azúcar y población en las Antillas" (Sugar and Population in the Antilles) the most serious and influential criticism of latifundismo in Cuba is published by Ramiro Guerra y Sánchez.
Machado takes a step toward dictatorship. A pro-Machado Constitutional Assembly extends presidential terms to six years, and invites Machado to accept a new term in power.
Mid1927. Students led by Sánchez Arango form the University Student Directorate (Directorio Estudiantil Universitario).
October. A Sugar Defense Commission and a Sugar Export Company are created to control sugar production and export.

April. Following Machado's orders, the University Council (made up of teachers and administrative officials) create disciplinary tribunals and expel leaders of the Directorio Estudiantil Universitario, including: Aureliano Sánchez Arango, Eduardo Chibás, Antonio Guiteras and others.
June 14. Ernesto Che Guevara is born in Rosario, Argentina.
September 14. Alberto Díaz Gutiérrez is born in Havana. He is later known as Alberto Korda, photographer of the Cuban Revolution. (Korda died on May 25, 2001.)
November 1. After Congress passes an Emergency Law prohibiting presidential nominations by any other than the Liberal, Conservative and Popular parties, Machado declares himself the only legal candidate of the Liberal, the Conservative and the Popular party, and runs for a second term unopposed. He is re-elected to a new, 6-year term.
From: Cuba, The Making Of A Revolution
By Ramon Eduardo Ruiz
Chapter 2, The Roots of Cuban Nationalism, page 39:
“By the late 1920’s the people disturbed by the role of American diplomacy in Cuban affairs which, in their opinion, had prostituted local politics, included not merely intellectuals and the militant nationalists of the past but students, professional men from socially prominent families, and countless members of clandestine labor organizations.”
Cuba 1933, Prelude to Revolution
By Luis E. Aguilar
Chapter 2, Failure of the Republic, page 33
"With a large part of the land and sugar industry in American hands, and with the Spaniards still controlling most of the centers of trade in the cities, politics was one of the few fields open to Cubans in their own land. It was no accident that until the 1930's a bureaucratic position in Cuba was called un destino, "a destiny," a salvation, and that electoral campaigns were celebrated as the "second zafra" of the island.

BEFORE The Revolution – 1

October. The Wall Street crash drags Cuba into its worse economic crisis. From 1928 to 1932, the price of sugar drops from 2.18 cents per pound to an all-time low of 0.57 cents.The sugar crop value totals $225,100,000.
March. A bill is introduced in Congress stating that "any Cuban who seeks the intervention or interference of a foreign power in the internal or external development of the national life" will be imprisoned for life. Under U.S. pressure, Machado vetoes the proposal.
By the end of the year, tobacco exports represent a total value of $43,067,000.

January. The government announces a general reduction in the salaries of all public employees (except soldiers), and a new law forbids all public demonstrations by political parties or groups not legally registered.
March. Throughout the island, masses protest the government's delay in paying salaries of teachers and agricultural workers.
May 19. In Artemisa (near Havana) a meeting of Nationalists is interrupted by a group of soldiers. Eight people are killed and several dozen injured. The tragedy creates a national commotion and many national leaders are arrested.
May 28. Railroad workers declare a general strike. The army takes over the running of the trains, and several labor leaders are arrested.
May 30. Quoted in an article in the Diario de la Marina, Gerardo Machado takes full responsibility for the army's action in Artemisa on May 19.
June. Former President Mario G. Menocal makes statements critical of the government.
September 30. Tipped by José Soler of a planned demonstration by the University Student Directorate, police block the streets around the University of Havana and confront the students. After several arrests, Directorio leader Rafael Trejo is fatally wounded.
October 1. Machado's government suspends constitutional guarantees, charging that the students are "following orders from Moscow." Machado warns that he will act "without weakness or hesitation."
November 11. In Pinar del Río, Santiago de Cuba, Santa Clara and several other cities, students lead violent demonstrations against the government.
By the end of November all schools are closed in Cuba, and Diario de la Marina, the oldest newspaper on the island, is forced to suspend publication.
December 28. The Havana Yacht Club is closed down by police on the allegation that it is being used by "conspirators" and enemies of the government.

January 4. The entire membership of the Directorio Estudiantil Universitario is arrested. They remain in prison until March.
January 29. To avoid a decline in revenues, the government issues an Emergency Tax Law which creates a series of new taxes and increases several old ones.
February 14. 85 university professors are indicted on charges of sedition and conspiracy to overthrow the government. Among these is Dr. Ramón Grau San Martín.
June 21. Congress authorizes the suspension of constitutional guarantees.
June 30. The Supreme Court rejects all the arguments presented against the Emergency Tax Law issued on January 29.
July. Rumors circulate throughout Cuba about an imminent revolution.
July 9. Captain Calvo, chief of the government's repressive corps, is shot from a passing car and killed. After this event, terrorism and brutality become weapons used frequently by the government and the opposition.
August 10. Mendieta and Menocal attempt an uprising in the interior of the island, supposedly coordinated with members of Machado's army.
August 14. Mendieta and Menocal are easily captured in Río Verde, Pinar del Río.
September. A secret political organization is formed by Dr. Joaquín Martínez Saenz. Known as the ABC, their aim is the punishment of principal members of Machado's government in retribution for their bloody aggression against the opposition.
December 23. Machado announces in the Diario de la Marina that he will stay in office until May 20, 1935, "not a minute more or a minute less."

February 6. Camilo Cienfuegos is born in the Havana neighborhood called La Vibora.

As the year begins, Machado is deeply entrenched in power, using official brutality in an attempt to crush the opposition.
March. In Miami, a revolutionary junta is created including representatives from the principal opposition to Machado.
May 8. U.S. ambassador Benjamin Sumner Welles arrives in Havana. His background includes diplomatic experience in the Dominican Republic.
May 11. Sumner Welles and President Machado meet for the first time.
July 1. A meeting mediated by Sumner Welles takes place at the American Embassy in Havana, including members of the ABC, the OCRE, the Nationalists and others.
July 2. In the Diario de la Marina, Cosme de la Torriente asserts that the National Union is in favor of returning to the Constitution of 1901.
July 21. Sumner Welles insists on the restitution of constitutional guarantees, and Machado responds in a stern tone: "The re-establishment of the guarantees is a prerogative of the President of Cuba and will be done when the President considers it necessary."
July 25. Bus drivers declare a general strike.
July 26. The government approves a law that gives a general amnesty to all prisoners.
July 27. Machado addresses the Congress. "The mediation of Mr. Welles," he says, "cannot damage our sovereignty, because it is a result of his spontaneous desire and not of any instructions received from the government of the United States…" He reiterates that he will remain in office until May 20, 1935.
August 1. Streetcar workers join the strike.
August 4. The strike of bus drivers grows into a general strike that nearly paralyzes Havana. To break the strike, Machado reaches a compromise with Communist leaders, but before any action can be taken, the announcement of his resignation by a radio station sends jubilant crowds to the streets. As the crowds march towards the presidential palace they are met by police and about 20 people are killed, others injured.
August 9. The strike spreads throughout the island.
August 12. After an anti-Machado conspiracy in the army is forced into the open, a group of officers take possession of some military barracks and proclaim a rebellion against the government. Machado visits the Columbia Military Barracks to assess the situation, and a group of officers that includes Julio Sanguily and Erasmo Delgado inform him that to save Cuba from intervention he should resign. Machado resigns the presidency, and flies to Nassau in the Bahamas. Carlos M. Céspedes, the son of Cuba's legendary leader, takes over as provisional president.
August 13. Without consulting with the new President, U.S. Ambassador Sumner Welles invites leaders of the ABC to take part in Cuba's new provisional government.
August 14. Provisional President Carlos M. Céspedes announces his new cabinet, which includes fewer ABC members than Welles promised.
August 24. The Student Directory issues a Manifesto-Program to the Cuban People. The document is highly critical of the provisional government, the ABC, and the political power structure in Cuba.
August 26. At the Columbia military barracks, a "Junta de los Ocho," formed by dissatisfied sergeants, begin to meet in the enlisted men's club. The junta includes Sergeants Pablo Rodríquez, Fulgencio Batista, Eleuterio Pedraza and others.
September 5. In an uprising known as the "Revolt of the Sergeants," Fulgencio Batista takes over control of the island. Céspedes and his cabinet abandon the Presidential palace the next day.
September 5. The ABC declines all responsibility for the revolt.
September 10. From the balcony of the Presidential Palace, Ramón Grau San Martín takes the oath of office in front of large crowds. This government lasts 100 days, but engineers radical changes in Cuban society. It nullifies the Platt Amendment (except for the Guantánamo naval base lease) sets up an 8-hour working day, establishes a Department of Labor, opens the university to the poor, grants peasants the right to the land they were farming, gives women the right to vote, and reduces electricity rates by 40 percent.
The new government includes Antonio Guiteras as Vice President. He is credited with keeping this government together for the time it lasts. U.S. Ambassador Sumner Welles refers to these changes as "communistic" and "irresponsible," and the U.S. government never recognizes the Grau-Guiteras government.
September 15. An article in the New York Times quotes students from the Directorio, who assert that their movement compares "most closely with the new revolutionary Republic of Spain."
September 16. In the front page of El País, Guiteras states: "In our capitalist system, no government has been so ready to defend the interests of workers and peasants as the present revolutionary government. Nevertheless, induced by American companies, the workers are unconsciously helping in trying to topple the government… It is essential that the worker become aware of the reality we are facing today. It is impossible for the masses to gain political control; thus, instead of opposing the revolutionary government they should cooperate with it to obtain the satisfaction of the most immediate demands of the workers, and to avoid being an instrument of imperialist companies. The National Confederation of Workers will be responsible before History for the setback that the masses will suffer if we give the Americans a pretext to intervene."
September 20. Decree No. 1693 establishes an eight-hour day for workers, and Decree No. 1703 requires that all professionals (lawyers, physicians, architects, etc.) become members of their respective professional organizations in order to continue practicing.
September 22. The Student Left Wing, (Ala Izquierda Estudiantil) formed by students who have moved away from the University Student Directorate, begins to protest the removal of certain professors from Havana schools.
September 29. The police uses weapons to disperse a demonstration organized by the Communist party to honor Julio Antonio Mella, whose ashes were just brought back from Mexico. 6 people are killed, and many others wounded.
October 2. The Department of Labor is created.
October 2. The Army attacks the National Hotel. 14 officers are killed in the battle, 17 wounded and the rest taken prisoner.
October 19. Grau invites Dr. Fernando Ortiz to join the cabinet and to propose a solution that could unify all revolutionary groups. Dr. Ortiz declines to join the cabinet but accepts the offer to propose a solution. Dr. Ortiz's proposal, to include representatives of all important political groups in a genuine "national" government fails due to mutual mistrust, suspicion and past resentment.
October 24. The ABC Radical withdraws its support for the revolutionary government.
"At the end of the October," writes Luis E. Aguilar in Cuba 1933: Prologue to Revolution, "hope for conciliation had died, terrorism in Havana increased, and the two most important sectors of the anti-Machado forces-the students and the ABC-were openly attacking each other."
November 3. A meeting at Sergio Carbo's house in Havana includes Grau, Guiteras, students and various other members of government, military command and the Revolutionary Junta. They have a recently passed decree that allows them to arrest (and, if necessary, kill) Fulgencio Batista. When he finally arrives with only one bodyguard, Batista notices that he is in danger and is able to talk his way out of the situation. Grau is later blamed for accepting Batista's apology.
November 5. After a difficult and emotional meeting the University Student Directorate dissolves.
November 8. Part of the Cuban Air Force and one unit of the Army rebel against the government. Nationalists lead by Rafael Iturralde and Colonel Blas Hernandez (the anti-Machado guerilla fighter) are joined by the ABC, lead by Carlos Saladrigas.
By noon, the rebels capture several police stations in Havana, and two planes attack the presidential palace. Rumors of the insurrection are spreading throughout the city. Batista later orders the Army to fight on the side of the government.
November 9. At 6 p.m., Grau announces victory for the government, and he condemns the actions of "false revolutionaries."
November 16. Horace G. Knowles, former U.S. Ambassador to Bolivia and Nicaragua, accuses Sumner Welles of "openly helping the counterrevolution." He suggests that the U.S. should recognize the revolutionary government. [Only Uruguay and Mexico have recognized the government so far.]
November 24. Sumner Welles is replaced by Jefferson Caffery. [In Cuba, this is seen as proof that the U.S. intends to recognize the revolutionary government.]
December. A new law called "El Derecho de Tanteo" (The right of estimate) is passed, giving the government the right to be considered a potential buyer in any sugar transaction. This law is meant to eliminate the way American and Cuban companies avoid paying taxes by selling their sugar mills or land at very low prices to another company, often a subsidiary.
December 1. The Committee for the Defense of the Zafra (sugar crop) is formed by wealthy hacendados who announce their support for the revolutionary government.
December 8. Guiteras announces that any one caught stealing or damaging government property is to be shot on the spot.
December 18. U.S. Ambassador Jefferson Caffery arrives in Havana.
From Cuba 1933: Prologue to Revolution, by Luis E. Aguilar:
"Caffery belonged to the same school of suave diplomats as Sumner Welles. Without any previous personal involvement in the Cuban imbroglio, he had a chance to be impartial and to judge the situation from an objective standpoint. He had, nevertheless, similar and possibly even stronger convictions than Welles about whom the American government should or should not support. A political conservative of elegant manners, Caffery was once described as a "somewhat frostbitten diplomat of the old school, who holds to the Hamilton belief that those who have should rule." "Diplomacy, as I interpret it," he declared in Havana, "nowadays consists largely in cooperation with American business."
December 19. In the front page of Diario de la Marina, Caffery states that "my country's policy toward Cuba will remain the same."
December 22. A huge pro-government demonstration gathers in front of the Presidential Palace to thank the government for its nationalistic stance.
In 1933 Batista meets with mobster Meyer Lansky, and they forge a friendship and business relationship that lasts three decades.

January 2. A new decree provides free registration at the University for low income students.
January 10. Ambassador Caffery reports to the U.S. State Department his opinion of the revolutionary government: "I agree with former Ambassador Welles as to the inefficiency, ineptitude and unpopularity with all the better classes in the country of the de facto government. It is supported only by the army and the ignorant masses who have been misled by utopian promises." Batista asks Caffery what must be done to obtain U.S. recognition. Caffery answers, "I will lay down no specific terms; the matter of your government is a Cuban matter and it is for you to decide what you will do about it."
January 11. In the presence of Batista, President Grau San Martín tells U.S. Ambassador Caffery that he is willing to accept a compromise with the opposition, and that he is willing to allow a non-political successor to guarantee fair elections.
January 14. Guiteras announces the nationalization of American-owned Electric Bond and Share Company. It is his last governmental act.
January 15. Now a Colonel, Fulgencio Batista, encouraged by Caffery, forces the resignation of the Grau-Guiteras government. In the front page of the Diario de la Marina, Guiteras states that "if the junta designates me, I will accept (the presidency). If the army opposes, we'll fight the army."Before a large crowd in Havana, Grau makes a short farewell address: "I have dictated some laws which are beneficial for the entire country… I have never submitted to any foreign embassy… I have tried to benefit the people, and I have used a firm hand against big companies." The following week he departs for Mexico.
Carlos Hevia becomes the new provisional President.
January 17. Under political pressure from the military and opposition groups, Hevia addresses his resignation to Batista, and Carlos Mendieta steps in as the new provisional President. On the same day, Rubén Martínez Villena (leader of the Communist Party) dies in Havana.
January 20. The U.S. government recognizes the Batista-installed government government with Carlos Mendieta as President.
January. The Cuban Electric Company (a subsidiary of the American Electric Bond and Share Company) goes on strike and is later placed under temporary government control.
April 1. The current issue of the magazine Bohemia includes comments by Pablo de la Torriente: "Compromise, compromise, is always the advice of those false revolutionaries who never understand the real lesson of Danton: that in Cuba, as in any other place, what a revolutionary needs is audacity, audacity and more audacity."
May 29. Cuba and the U.S. sign the "Treaty on Relations," which eliminates the Platt Amendment and the Permanent Treaty of 1903, but allows the U.S. to continue using Guantánamo Bay.
Cuban women win the right to vote.

March. The various revolutionary groups-the Auténticos, Guiteras' Joven Cuba, the ABC and the Communists, join forces in a general strike to topple Batista. The effort fails.
May 8. While preparing to leave Cuba and organize an armed invasion like that of José Martí forty years earlier, Guiteras is killed by the army.

Civil war breaks out in Spain. About one thousand Cubans fight with the International Brigades to defend Spanish democracy.
Colonel Batista becomes General Batista.
June 13. Pablo de la Torriente Brau, member of the Student Left Wing (Ala Izquierda Estudiantil), pays tribute to Batista in a letter to Raúl Roa:
"If we deny his personal courage, we can't deny his other qualities for leadership. He has the imagination of a stenographer, that is, a capacity to quickly interpret a confusing sign, a senseless paragraph or, if applied to politics, a difficult situation. On the other hand, he has the attributes of a demagogue: he is a good speaker, a man of projects, he knows the secret of the smile and the handshake. He constructs, steals, and improves himself… No doubt he is facing a difficult situation, but we should not forget that in Cuba today he is perhaps the man with the best political skills, that he knows how to solve problems, and that when measuring his forces he never forgets to also measure those of his enemies."
The letter also states:
"He belongs to that category of men who, in case of a revolution and if given enough time, would have a plane ready to fly." (Ironically, 22 years later, in December 1958, Batista does have a plane ready to fly.)

May 21. Ricardo Alarcón de Quesada is born in Havana.

Cuban-owned sugar mills account for 22% of the island's total sugar production.

The Constitution of 1940 is established by a national assembly that includes Blas Roca, a young shoemaker who helped organize the Revolution of 1933. The document strikes a balance between the rich and the working class, it protects individual and social rights, supports full employment and a minimum wage, extends social security, calls for equal pay for equal work and outlaws the huge plantations known as latifundias.
General Fulgencio Batista is elected Cuba's 14th president.

Batista legalizes Cuba's Communist Party (established in 1925).

Fidel Castro, a student about to enter a Jesuit high school in Havana, is proclaimed the best high school athlete in Cuba for the year 1943-44.
Ramón Grau San Martín is elected president. [Grau is the first Cuban leader to openly defy U.S. dominance, and support the causes of the lower classes.]

October. Fidel Castro enters the University of Havana.
October 24. Cuba joins the United Nations.

September 19. Famed mobster Charlie Lucky Luciano is issued a Cuban passport, and that same day he leaves Italy. Within two weeks he arrives in Cuba, where's he's met by Meyer Lansky.
November 29. Employees of Hotel Nacional go on strike, demanding a 30% salary increase.
December 22-26. Luciano precides over a large mafia meeting in Havana. . Attendees at the Hotel Nacional meeting include: Meyer Lansky, Frank Costello, Tommy Lucchese, Vito Genovese, Joe Bonanno, Santo Trafficante Jr. and Moe Dalitz. Among the topics discussed is the assassination of Bugsy Siegel. Coincidentally, Frank Sinatra makes his singing debut in Havana.

February 23. Luciano is arrested at a restaurant in Vedado.
March 29. Luciano leaves Cuba on a Turkish freighter. Popular radio personality Eduardo Chibás reports on the departure in his Sunday night radio program.
May 15. The Cuban People's Party (Partido Del Pueblo Cubano) is formed. It becomes known as the Orthodox Party (Partido Ortodoxo).
"I had heard that Cubans are a deeply religious people. In two days here, I have learned that baseball is their religion."
– Sam Lacy, 1947

April 9. In Bogotá, Colombia, Fidel Castro participates in a popular uprising known as Bogotazo.
June 1. Carlos Prío Socarrás is elected president.
October 10. Carlos Prío succeeds Grau San Martín as president of Cuba.
Fulgencio Batista is elected in Las Villas to the Cuban Senate.

Brief introduction to the 1950s
August 5. At the end of his popular radio show Eddy Chibás commits suicide.
December. The popular weekly magazine, "Bohemia," holds a public opinion poll that shows Batista (who's running for president) as a distant third.

Fidel Castro, two years out of law school, runs for Congress as a candidate of the Orthodox Party.
March 10. Fulgencio Batista takes over (again) in a bloodless coup de etat. Elections, three months away, are canceled.
March 27. The U.S. recognizes Batista's government.
June 2. In Canada, Carlos Prío, Emilio Ochoa and other moderates meet to unite forces against Batista. Their union is known as the "Pact of Montreal."

March 28. The Saturday Evening Post runs an article critical of crooked gambling. On the cover: "Suckers in Paradise: How Americans Loose Their Shirts in Caribbean Gambling Joints." In Havana, the author can only find two locations where the gambling is honest.
March 30. In Havana, 13 American "cardsharps" are arrested for running dishonest gambling operations. 11 are immediately deported.
July 6. Ernesto "Che" Guevara graduates from medical school in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
July 26. Fidel Castro leads a revolt in which 160 men and women attack the Moncada army barracks near Santiago de Cuba. The attack is a failure and surviving rebels are forced to retreat into the mountains. Large numbers of rebels are killed.
August 1. While sleeping in a hut, Fidel Castro is arrested and taken to a jail in Boniato (with other surviving members of the attack on the Moncada army barracks.
September 21. The trial begins in Santiago de Cuba for surviving rebels of the Moncada attack (on July 26). Castro and others are tried separately.
October 6. In Santiago de Cuba, 26 survivors of the Moncada attack are found guilty and sentenced to prison.
October 13. Twenty-six of the Moncada prisoners found guilty (on October 6) are sent to prison on the Isle of Pines. The women, Haydée Santamaría and Melba Hernández are sent Guanajay, outside Havana.
October 16. At his trial, Castro delivers a historic defense that ends with the phrase "history will absolve me" (la historia me absolverá). He is sentenced to 15 years in prison.
October 26. Batista announces that general elections will be held on November 1, 1954.
October 31. Batista outlaws the Cuban Communist Party.
November 19. In Mexico City, the Pact of Montreal is ratified by moderates who oppose Batista.

February 20. Haydée Santamaría and Melba Hernández are released from prison.
March 28. During the Havana carnival, José Antonio Echeverría, Fructuoso Rodríguez and other leaders of the Federation of University Students (FEU) are attacked and beaten by the police.
May. A Cuba-wide campaign seeking amnesty for Castro and the Mocada prisoners is organized.
May 19. Melba Hernández travels to Mexico to organize veterans of Moncada.
May 25. Police in Havana raid a house where Aureliano Sánchez (AAA leader) is hiding. Sanchez escapes to the embassy from Uruguay, and travels to Mexico on June 5. Police discover a list of AAA members.
July. Fulgencio Batista announces that he will run for President.
July 26. On the first anniversary of the attack on the Moncada Army Barracks, a demonstration led by Haydée Santamaría and Melba Hernández is dispersed by police at Colón Cemetary.
July 14. In order to "legally" run for President of Cuba, Batista turns over the presidency to Dr. Andrés Domingo Morales del Castillo.
September 11. Poet Emilio Ballagas dies in Havana.
October. Castro's speech "History Will Absolve Me" is published and circulated throughout the island.

January 23. Appointed president Andrés Domingo Morales signs a law that prohibits civil courts from taking on crimes by military personnel.
January 28. On the anniversary of Martí's birth, a group of people marching to where Martí is buried in Santiago de Cuba is attacked by the police.
February 6. U.S. Vice-President Richard Nixon arrives in Cuba.
February 11. In a letter sent from the U.S., Carlos Prío and other moderates ask Richard Nixon to pressure Batista to step down.
February 25. General Fulgencio Batista is inaugurated as President of Cuba. Rafael Guas Inclán is Vice President.
April. Head of the CIA, Allan Dulles, visits Cuba to organize the Bureau for the Repression of Communist Activities (BRAC).
May 15. Fidel Castro and other veterans of the attack on the Moncada Army Barracks are released from prison in a general amnesty.
June 24. Fidel Castro leaves for Mexico.

BEFORE The Revolution – 2

June 24 – July 3. In Mexico City, 28 Cuban revolutionaries and supporters are arrested. Castro is not released until July 24, and Che Guevara is released a week later.
November 25. On a 60-foot yacht named Granma, 82 men lead by Fidel Castro depart for Cuba.
November 30. In Santiago de Cuba, 300 young men led by Frank País in olive green uniforms and red and black armbands with the July 26 emblem, attack police headquarters, the Customs House and the harbor headquarters.
December 2. The Granma lands in Las Coloradas, Oriente province, after being delayed by weather and logistical problems, including poor communications between the expeditionaries and the Cuban undergroun.
December 5. The rebels are surprised by Batista's troops while resting on the edge of a cane field at Alegría de Pío, not far from the Sierra Maestra. The majority of the revolutionaries are killed or captured, but few escape to the Sierra Maestra, including the Castro brothers Fidel and Raúl, Che Guevara, Juan Almeida, Calixto García and a handful of others.
December 8. Don Cosme de la Torriente dies.
December 18. 12 survivors of the "Granma" expedition regroup at Purial (in the foothills of the Sierra Maestra mountains) and organize the first guerilla unit.
December 21. Che Guevara and Juan Almeida join the others at Purial. At this point the Rebel Army consists of 15 fighters with 7 weapons, and they begin to move higher into the Sierra Maestra mountains.
December 24. In Santiago de Cuba, leaders of the 26th-July Movement meet secretly to discuss support for the rebels in the Sierra Maestra.

January. Cuban Defense Minister Santiago Rey visits Washington as an official guest of the U.S. government.
January 2. In Santiago, 4 youths are found dead in an empty building, including 14-year old William Soler. They had been arrested as suspects in revolutionary activities and tortured.
January 4. A procession of 500 women dressed in black and lead by William Soler's mother, moves slowly through the streets of Santiago. They carry a banner: "Stop the murders of our sons."
January 17. The war opens with a successful rebel attack on a small army garrison at the mouth of the La Plata River. The Rebel Army has 23 usable weapons.
January 21. Lt. Angel Sánches Mosquera leads a company of elite Batista troops into the Sierra Maestra mountains to search for the rebels. A larger unit, lead by Major Joaquín Casillas, follows.
January 22. At Arroyo del Infierno, rebels ambush a column of army soldiers.
February 9. Rebels are attacked by the Army at Altos de Espinosa and disperse for three days.
February 17. New York Times journalist Herbert Matthews arrives in the Sierra Maestra to interview Castro and the rebels.
March 11. In Santiago, Frank País is arrested for his participation in the November 30 uprising.
March 13. Student leader José Echeverría and a small group take over a radio station in Havana. He is killed while retreating to the university. In a simultaneous attack on the presidential palace, 35 rebels and 5 palace guards are killed.
March 30. The new Shell Oil refinery is inaugurated by Batista, who tells the press that there are no guerrillas in the Sierra Maestra mountains.
April 6. The Havana Hilton opens with a party attended by half of Batista's cabinet.
April 20. Under orders from Batista, Police Captain Esteban Ventura guns down 4 of the surviving student leaders of the March 13 Palace attack. The event is known as the 7 Humboldt Street massacre.
April 23. In the Sierra Maestra, Castro is interviewed on film by U.S. journalist Robert Taber. The film is shown by CBS-TV in May.
May 10. In Santiago, at the trial of "Granma" survivors, Judge Manuel Urrutia declares that all should be acquitted. Two other judges send men to prison for varying periods of up to 8 years.
May 14. Arthur Gardner, U.S. Ambassador to Cuba and a close friend of Batista, is removed from office. He is replaced a month later by Earl Smith.
May 18. In the Sierra Maestra, rebels receive a shipment of over two dozen automatic weapons and 6,000 rounds of ammunition (sent by the July 26 Movement in Santiago).
May 26. In Matanzas, a bomb seriously damages the old Tinguaro mill.
May 28. The first major battle of the war is a rebel attack on the El Uvero garrison in a small town south of the Sierra Maestra range. "For us," writes Guevara, "it was a victory that meant our guerrillas had reached full maturity. From this moment on, our morale increased enormously, our determination and hope for victory also increased, and though the months that followed were a hard test, we now had the key to the secret of how to beat the enemy."
June 4. United Press International (UPI) reports that 800 U.S.-trained and equipped Cuban troops will be sent to fight against the Rebel Army in the Sierra Maestra.
July 12. After days of discussion in the mountains, the Manifesto of the Sierra Maestra is issued, signed by Fidel Castro, Raúl Chibás and Felipe Pazos. Most of it is written by Castro, and calls for all Cubans to form a civic revolutionary front to "end the regime of force, the violation of individual rights, and the crimes of the police."
July 21. Ernesto Che Guevara is the first fighter promoted by Castro to Commander. He is named head of the Second Rebel Army Column
July 30. Chief of police, Colonel José Salas Cañizares kills Frank País, a 23-year-old leader of the July-26-Movement and a Castro ally.
July 31. In Santiago, a crowd of 60,000 attend a funeral march for Frank País. The crowds are too large for the police to control and the city closes down for three days.
August 15. A large number of arrests are carried out by Batista's police, including: Francisco Pérez Rivas, María Urquiola Lechuga, Mercedes Urquiola Lechuga, José Manuel Alvárez Santa Cruz (student, age 17), Francisco Miares Fernández (student, age 18), Manuel de Jesús Alfonso (age 15), Enrique Delgado Mayoral (age 18), Eliecer Cruz Cabrera (age 18), Eladio and Ignacio Alfonso Carrera (ages 16 and 19), José Herrera León (age 16), Ubaldo Fiallo Sánchez (age 20), Antonio Fernández Segura, Jorge Alvarez Tagle (age 19), Juan Fernández Segura, Francisco Gómez Bermejo (age 17), Pastor Valiente Hernández, Norberto Belanzoarán López and others.
August 20. At Palma Mocha, in the Las Cuevas region, the Rebel Army, lead by Fidel Castro, is victorious over Batista's army.
September 5. Members of the July-26-Movement in Cienfuegos attack the naval police headquarters and the garrison of the Rural Guards.
October. Ex-president of the Cuban Medical Association, Dr. Augusto Fernandez Conde, denounces the atrocities of the Batista regime at the World Medical Association meeting in Istanbul, Turkey.
November. The Miami Pact is signed by officials from the Authentic Party, Orthodox Party, Revolutionary Directorate, and others. The Pact creates the Cuban Liberation Junta, which is controlled by bourgeois opposition forces and does not oppose U.S. intervention.
November 4. El Cubano Libre, (The Free Cuban) the newspaper of the Rebel Army, is published by Guevara in the Sierra Maestra.
November 29. Rebel captain Ciro Redondo is killed in battle at Mar Verde. He is posthumously promoted to commander.
December 6. Led by Lt. Lalo Sardiñas, rebel troops clash with Batista's army at El Salto.
December 10. Hotel Riviera opens in Havana. (It costs $14 million, most of it supplied by the Cuban government for Meyer Lansky.) The floor show in the Copa Room is headlined by Ginger Rogers. Lansky complains that Rogers "can 'wiggle her ass, but she can't sing a goddam note."
A weekly news magazine, Revista Carteles, reports that twenty members of the Batista government own numbered Swiss bank accounts, each with deposits of more than $1 million.
American firms make profits of $77 million from their Cuban investments, while employing little more than 1 percent of the country's population.
By the late 1950’s, American capital control:
90% of Cuba’s mines
80% of its public utilities
50% of its railways
40% of its sugar production
25% of its bank deposits

Early in the year Batista receives $1,000,000 in military aid from the U.S. All of Batista's arms, planes tanks, ships, and military supplies come from the U.S., and his army is trained by a joint mission of the three branches of the U.S. armed forces.
February 24. On the 63rd anniversary of the beginning of Martí's War of Independence, Radio Rebelde begins transmission from "the free territory of Cuba."
March 1. Raúl Castro and Juan Almeida leave the Sierra Maestra with a column of 67 men to open a second front in the mountains north of Santiago, the Sierra Cristal.
In March, 45 civic institutions sign an open letter supporting the July-26-Movement, including the national organizations of lawyers, architects, public accountants, dentists, electrical engineers, social workers, professors, and veterinarians.
April 9. A national strikes fails due to timing errors and lack of popular support. This is a serious setback for the rebels.
May. Batista launches a vast offensive against the guerillas in the Sierra Maestra mountains.
May 25. In the Sierra Maestra mountains, the Rebel Army holds the first peasant assembly attended by 350. Among the topics discussed is a plan for agrarian reform.
June 29. In Santo Domingo, on the Sierra Maestra mountains, the rebels achieve a serious victory with many captured prisoners and supplies. (Prisoners are later released.)
July 11-21. The Battle of Jigüe lasts about ten days and marks a turning point in the war.
July 20. From the Sierra Maestra, Radio Rebelde broadcasts the text of the Caracas Pact, signed by Castro and others. It calls for armed insurrection to establish a provisional government and an end for U.S. support of Batista.
September 4. In the Sierra Maestra, the Mariana Grajales Platoon is formed. It consists of women fighters.
September 18. The Rebel Army defeats Batista's forces at Yara.
September 27-28. The Mariana Grajales Platoon participates in the battle to destroy Batista's military garrison in Cerro Pelado, Oriente.
October 9. The Rebel Army creates a new front to operate in the Oriente province. This Fourth Front is commanded by Delio Gómez Ochoa.
October 10. Law no. 3 of the Sierra Maestra is issued by the Rebel Army. It states that tenant farmers and sharecroppers are entitled to the land they work.
October 26-27. The Rebel Army captures the army garrison at Güinía de Miranda.
October 31. U.S. Secretary of State John Foster Dulles and his wife dine with the Cuban Ambassador at the Cuban Embassy in Washington to commemorate Teddy Roosevelt (who refused to allow the Cuban liberating army from entering Santiago in 1898).
November 2. The Rebel Army captures the army garrison at Alto Songo in Oriente province.
November 3. In a mock general election, Batista's presidential candidate, Andrés Rivero Agüero, is declared the winner.
December 9. The Rebel Army takes Baire and San Luis, in Oriente province.
December 9. In Havana, William D. Pawley meets with Batista for 3 hours, offering that the dictator retire to his home in Daytona Beach, Florida. Batista declines.
December 15-18. Che Guevara's column captures the city of Fomento.
December 19. The Rebel Army achieves victories at Jiguaní, Caimanera and Mayajigua (in Northern Las Villas).
December 22-25. The rebels capture the towns of Guayos, Cabaiguán, Placetas, Manicaragua, Cumanayagua, Camarones, Cruces, Lajas, Sagua de Tánamo, Puerto Padre and Sancti Spíritus.
December 27-28. The rebels capture Caibarién, Remedios and Palma Soriano.
December 26. U.S. native Alan Robert Nye is arrested by the Revolutionary Army in Baire, near Jiguany, and charged with a plot to assassinate Fidel Castro.
December 29. Che Guevara takes the city of Santa Clara and captures over 1,000 prisoners.
Terrence Cannon writes:
"The U.S. did not send in the marines for one basic reason: it did not fear the Revolution. It was inconceivable to the U.S. policy makers that a revolution in Cuba could turn out badly for them. After all, U.S. companies owned the country."
It is estimated that by the end of 1958, 11,500 Cuban women earn their living as prostitutes.
Women comprise 14.8% of the Cuban work force.

AFTER The Revolution

January 1. Revolutionary forces take control of Havana. At about 2 a.m., Batista, his family, and closest associates, board a plane at Camp Columbia,and leave the island. Che Guevara and Camilo Cienfuegos lead the rebels into Havana.
January 1. In Santiago de Cuba, Oriente Province, Castro makes a victorious speech which includes the following: "This time the revolution will not be frustrated! This time, fortunately for Cuba, the revolution will achieve its true objective. It will not be like 1898, when the Americans came and made themselves masters of the country."
January 2. Manuel Urrutia is installed as President and Jose Mira Cardona as Prime Minister.
January 6. The first issue of Hoy appears.
January 7. Castro arrives in Havana. The U.S. government officially recognizes the new Cuban government.
January 10. Earl Smith, U.S. Ambassador to Cuba, resigns. He is replaced by Philip Bonsal.
January 11. Throughout the island, Batista's henchmen and former police are executed in firing squads after being prosecuted in military tribunals.
January 12. In Santiago de Cuba, 75 men are executed. The group allegedly represents former police guards known for cruelty and violence and members of former Senator Rolando Masferrer's private army.
January 13. Castro declares that the trials will go on "until all criminals of the Batista regime are tried."
January 23. At a public military tribunal held at the sports stadium in Havana, Major Jesus Sosa Blanco (of Batista's Army) is sentenced to death before an exited crowd of 18,000 spectators and 300 reporters. Serving as judges for the military tribunal are Dr. Humberto Sori Marin, Major Raul Chibas, and Major Universo Sanchez.
At night, a group of about 100 women dressed in black protest the executions of "counter-revolutionists."
January 31. Former Batista Army Captain Pedro Morejon is sentenced to death in Havana for "assassination, homicide, robbery, incendiarism and damage."
February 7. Cuba's Constitution of 1940 is reinstated (it was suspended by General Batista after his coup in 1952).
February 16. Fidel Castro, Commander of the Rebel Army, replaces Miró Cardonas as Prime Minister of the Revolutionary Government.
February 18. Major Jesus Sosa Blanco (of Batista's Army) is executed at the ancient moat of La Cabaña Fortress.
February 22. In Havana, 2 members of Rolando Masferrer's private army are captured after a shootout in which 2 policemen and a civilian are wounded.
February 28. Castro announces that general elections will be held in Cuba in 2 years. Quoted in the NY Times: "Elections could not be held now because they would not be fair. We have an overwhelming majority at present and it is in the interest of the nation that the political parties become fully developed and their programs defined before elections are held."
March 3. The Cuban government nationalizes the Cuban Telephone Compnay, an affiliate of ITT, and reduces telephone rates.
March 19. As of this day, 483 total "war criminals" have been executed by firing squads. An editorial in the front page of Revolution calls for an end to the executions.
March 24. Military trials and executions are suspended during Easter week.
March 26. Five men are arrested for a conspiracy to kill Premier Fidel Castro; Roberto Corral Miramon (Café owner), Roberto Lopez Paz (former Batista soldier), Roberto Perez Merens, Jose Sosa Mojena and Andres Arango Chacon. Allegedly the plot also involves pro-Batista exiles Rolando Masferrer and Ernesto de la Fe.
April 8. Heriberto Bertematy Rodriguez is sentenced to death for trafficking and selling marijuana.
April 11. Alan Robert Nye, a lieutenant in the U.S. Naval Reserve, goes on trial in Havana. He is accused of plotting to kill Fidel Castro. Prosecuting attorney Lieutenant José Antonio Suarez asserts that Nye received $100,000 from the ousted Batista regime. The trial takes place at the Cabana Fortress, across Havana Bay, in front of about 200 spectators that include army personnel as well as foreign and local reporters..
April 12. Alan Robert Nye is convicted of a plot to kill Premier Fidel Castro and sentenced to death. The sentence is suspended on the condition that Mr. Nye leave Cuba within forty-eight hours
April 13. In Havana, after a public trial that lasts 7 hours, Alan Robert Nye (a 31-year-old American from Chicago) is convicted in a plot to assassinate Cuban Prime Minister Fidel Castro. He is sentenced to death, but is allowed to leave the island as long as he never returns.
April 15-26. Castro visits the U.S. as a guest of the American Society of Newspaper Editors.
May 17. Castro signs Agrarian Reform Act, which expropriates over 1,000 acres of farmlands and forbids foreign land ownership.
June. In Cairo, Che Guevara makes the first official contact with the Soviet Union.
July 16. President Urrutia resigns, and Osvaldo Dorticós Torrado becomes Cuba's 19th president.
July 26. Castro returns to his post of Prime Minister.
July. American journalist Walter Lippmann writes:
"For the thing we should never do in dealing with revolutionary countries, in which the world abounds, is to push them behind an iron curtain raised by ourselves. On the contrary, even when they have been seduced and subverted and are drawn across the line, the right thing to do is to keep the way open for their return."
October 15. Raúl Castro becomes Defense Minister (the title is later changed to Minister of the Armed Forces).
October 19. Huber Matos, a leading figure in the revolutionary war, resigns his post as military commander of Camagüey province, along with 14 officers, because of the "rising influence of communism" in the revolution. He is arrested by Camilo Cienfuegos for treason.
October 25. Camilo Cienfuego's plane mysteriously disappears during a night flight.
December 15. Huber Matos is sentenced to 20 years in prison for conspiracy and treason.
December 17. The Army announces that death sentences will not be carried out during the Christmas season.
Terrence Canon on racism in Cuba
From: "Cuba, A Short History," Edited by Leslie Bethell. "Of the twenty-one ministers appointed in January 1959, twelve had resigned or had been ousted by the end of the year. Four more would go out in 1960 as the revolution moved toward a Marxist-Leninist political system."

January 18. The CIA creates the Cuba Task Force, and Jacob D. Esterline begins a draft version of what becomes "A Plan of Covert Action Against Cuba."
February 6. Soviet Deputy Prime Minister Anastas Mikoyan arrives in Havana. The visit results in a trade agreement in which the Soviet Union will purchase 5 million tons of sugar over a five-year period. The Soviets will also supply Cuba with crude oil, petroleum products, wheat, iron, fertilizers and machinery. Included is $100 million in credit at 2.5 percent interest.
February 26. A U.S. Federal Court orders Rolando Masferrer Rojas to limit his movements to the New York area.
February 29. U.S. Secretary of State John Foster Dulles rejects an offer from Cuba to begin negotiations (because of Cuba's condition that the U.S. take no unilateral action that could damage the Cuban economy while the talks are in progress).
March 4. The French ship La Coubre explodes in Havana harbor, killing dozens of soldiers and workers. The ship carried a batch of Belgian small arms.
March 13. An article in the New York Times, "The Other Miami-City of Intrigue," lists 5 anti-Castro groups operating in Miami.
March 17. President Eisenhower approves a covert action plan against Cuba that includes the use of a "powerful propaganda campaign" designed to overthrow Castro. The plan includes:
a) the termination of sugar purchases
b) the end of oil deliveries
c) continuation of the arms embargo in effect since mid-1958
d) the organization of a paramilitary force of Cuban exiles to invade the island.
April 19. The first shipment of Soviet oil arrives in Havana.
May 8. Cuba and the Soviet Union establish diplomatic relations.
May 17. Radio Swan, an anti-Castro radio station created by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) goes on the air as part of the Eisenhower-approved plan for covert operations. By summer, several clandestine and CIA-funded stations in the U.S. join Radio Swan in broadcasting to Cuba.
June. In the U.S., the Frente Revlucionario Democrático (FRD) is formed by Cuban exiles to oppose the government of Fidel Castro. The FRD consolidates 5 existing anti-Castro groups: the Movimiento de Rescate Revolucinario, headed by Manuel Antonio Varona; Movimiento Democrático Cristiano, headed by Jóse Ignacio Rasco; Movimiento de Recuperación Revolucionario, lead by Manuel Artime; Associación Montecristi, of Justo Carillo; and the Frente Nacional Democrático (Tripel A), lead by Aureliano Sanchez Arango. Manuel Artime is put in charge of military activity and remains the main link to the CIA.
June 7. Shell, Esso, and Texaco, refuse to refine Soviet oil (it is now known that the U.S. government encouraged this). At the same time, U.S. companies, under pressure from the U.S. government, refuse to sell fuel to Cuba.
June 16. U.S. diplomats Edwin L. Sweet and Wiliam G. Friedman are arrested at a meeting of counterrevolutionary conspirators. They are charged with "encouraging terrorist acts, granting asylum, financing subversibe publications and smuggling weapons. They are immediately expelled from Cuba.
June 29. Cuba nationalizes the Texaco oil refinery.
July 1. Cuba nationalizes Esso and Shell oil refineries.
July 3. In response to these seisures, the U.S. congress passes the "Sugar Act," eliminating Cuba’s remaining sugar quota.
July 5. Cuba retaliates by nationalizing all U.S. businesses and commercial property.
July 6. President Eisenhower cancels the 700,000 tons of sugar remaining in Cuba’s quota for 1960.
July 8. The Soviet Union announces that it will purchase the 700,000 tons of sugar cut by the U.S.
July 23. China agrees to purchase 500,000 tons of sugar from Cuba each year for five years. This is the first commercial treaty between the two countries.
August. The Federation of Cuban Women (FMC) is founded. It is run by Raúl Castro's wife, Vilma Espín Guilloys.
September 15. Three Cuban airplanes are seized by the U.S. government in New York. The planes belong to a Cuban delegation visiting the United Nations that includes Premier Fidel Castro. (The planes are eventually released on September 28 on the grounds of diplomatic immunity.)
September 15. 16 cigar factories, 14 cigarette plants and 20 tobacco warehouses are seized and nationalized, including the H. Upmann factory (home of Montecristo), and Partagas.
September 17. Cuba nationalizes all U.S. banks, including First National City Bank of New York, First National Bank of Boston and Chase Manhattan Bank.
September 18. Fidel Castro goes to New York to address the United Nations General Assembly.
September 26. At the United Nations in New York, Fidel Castro speaks before the General Assembly. "Although it has been said of us that we speak at great length," he says to open his speech, "you may rest assured we shall endeavor to be brief." The speech lasts 4.5 hours.
September 26. Four boats set out from Miami to invade Cuba under the leadership of Rolando Masferrer Rojas. Only one of the boats reaches Cuba, and three Americans are eventually executed as a result: Allan D. Thompson, Anthony Zarba and Robert O. Fuller.
October 13. As Urban Reform Law No. 890 goes into effect, 382 locally owned firms, including sugar mills, banks and large industries, are nationalized.
October 19. U.S. imposes a partial economic embargo on Cuba that excludes food and medicine.
October 24. Cuba nationalizes additional properties owned by American interests in response to the economic embargo imposed by the U.S.
October 30. In Guatemala, the newspaper La Hora reports that preparation for an invasion of Cuba is "well under way."
December 6. In a cable from Havana to Washington, the U.S. embassy reports that "during the past three months the popular support of the Castro regime has dropped markedly. The government is determined to suppress the opposition at any cost. It has accumulated a substantial quantity of military hardware from the Soviet bloc and is making great efforts to train the military in their use… It is not likely that the Castro regime will fall without considerable bloodletting and destruction of property."
December 14. The United Nations adops Resolution 1514 (XV), which declares that "colonialism in all its forms and manifestations" must come "to a speedy and unconditional end."
December 26. A dozen Cuban children travel from Havana airport to the U.S., beginning Operation Pedro Pan.
In the first 2 years of the revolution, Cuba loses more than 50% of its doctors and teachers.

"By 1961, over 100,000 political émigrés had gathered in the United States. And this number was only a fraction of those who had tried to get out but could not." – Theodore Draper, Castro's Revolution: Myths and Realities.
January 1. The national literacy campaign begins in Cuba.
January 2. At the UN Security Council, Cuba charges that the U.S. is preparing an invasion.
January 2. In a speech, Castro demands that U.S. embassy staff be reduced to 11, the same number as Cuba's embassy in Washington. He referrs to the U.S. embassy as a "nest of spies."
January 2. Weapons from the Soviet bloc are displayed in a parade in Havana. Included are rocket launchers, truck-pulled field artillery, heavy tanks, anti-aircraft and anti-tank guns.
January 3. The U.S. breaks off official diplomatic relations with Cuba.
January 23. In U.S. News & World Report, Dr. Miró Cardona predicts a "general uprising" in Cuba. He says, "After the uprising, there will have to be a military decision on whether to help the people with a mass invasion or with a continuation of the infiltration by specially trained men. It is impossible at this point to decide whether a mass invasion will be necessary."
January 25. Eloy Gutierrez Menoyo and members of the Second Front of Escanbray during the revolution arrive in Key West, Florida, on a fleet of three fishing boats.
February 1. In the Communist newspaper L'Unita (from Italy), Castro is asked by journalist Arminio Savioli about his opinion of Cuba's Communist Party. Castro replies: "It is the only Cuban party that has always cleary proclaimed the necsssity for radical change of structure, of social relationships. It is also true that at first the Communists distrusted me and us rebels. It was a justified distrust, an absolutely correct position, ideologically and politically. The Communists were right to be distrustful becaue we of the Sierra, leaders of the guerrillas, were still full of petty-bourgeois prejudices and defects, despite Marxist reading. The ideas were not clear to us,though we wanted with al or strength to destroy tyranny and privileges. Then we came together, we understood each other, and began to collaborate. The Communists have given much blood, much heroism, to the Cuban cause. Now we continue to work together. Loyally and fraternally."
February 16. Lino Fernandez and 500 of his men (who oppose the revolution) are captured and taken to jail in Santa Clara.
March 1. At least ten violations of Cuban airspace by hostile airplanes are reported.
March 9. President of Ecuador, José Maria Velasco Ibarra, announces U.S. demands that his country break off diplomatic relations with Cuba as a condition to the approval of various loans.
March 11. Major William A. Morgan (of Toledo, Ohio) and Major Jesus Carreras Zayas, both former military aides to Castro, are executed in Havana for treason.
March 18. A number of leaders opposing the revolution are arrested at a strategy meeting in Miramar, including Humberto Sori Marin, Manuel Puig, and Regelio Gonzalez Corso.
March 22. In New York, an agreement is reached between members of U.S.-based anti-Castro groups the Frente Revolucionario Democrático and the Movimiento Revolucionario del Pueblo. The agreement is signed by Antonio Varona, Manuel Ray and others.
March 29. Cuban soldiers arrest CIA agent Carlos Antonio Rodriquez Cabo, aka El Gallego. He is accused of various acts of terrorism.
April 8. Immigration and Naturalization agents in Miami arrest Rolando Masferrer Rojas. The arrest is requested by the U.S. State Department, which says that his presence in the U.S. (especially in Florida) is "prejudicial to the interests of the United States."
April 9. In Miami, Rolando Masferrer is indicted for an aborted invasion of Cuba (October 4, 1960). The alleged attack violates the Neutrality Act which forbids the launching of any military expedition from U.S. territory against a nation with which the U.S. is not at war. The Kennedy Administration opposes pro-Batista exiles while encouraging other anti-Castro groups.
April 9. In Havana, a terrorist bomb explodes in the store El Encanto. Another bomb explodes near the Pepsi Cola factory.
April 9. In exile, the newly formed Cuban Revolutionary Council, headed by Dr. José Miro Cardona, issues a statement that asserts, "We are not, nor could we be, counterrevolutionaries. We were revolutionists who fought against the previous regime, which had impoverished the whole country for the benefit of a minority lusting for gold and power. It is with the same convictions that we now oppose the present regime, which has betrayed our country and punged it into chaos." The statement is published in the New York Times.
April 11. Rolando Masferrer Rojas is formally charged with violating U.S. Neutrality Laws in an attempt to overthrow Cuba's Fidel Castro. [Section 960 of Title 18 of the United States Code reads: "Whoever, within the United States, knowingly begins or sets on foot or provides or prepares a means for or furnishes the money for, or takes part in, any military or naval expedition or enterprise to be carried on from thence against the territory or dominion of any foreign prince or state, or of any colony, district, or people with who the United States is at peace, shall be fined not more than $3,000 or imprisoned not more than three years, or both."
April 13. Another explosion at the store El Encanto destroys the 7-story building.
April 15. Cuban airfields are bombed by "mystery planes" in order to destroy the Revolution’s air force. A total of 8 B-26 bombers attack airfields at Ciudad Libertad (in Havana), San Antonio de los Baños and Santiago de Cuba. The attacks wipe out 27 percent of Cuba's fighter planes.
April 17. Cuban exiles, trained, armed and funded by the CIA, invade Cuba at Bay of Pigs (known in Cuba as Playa Girón). After three days of fighting the invading force is defeated by the Cuban army.
April 19. Castro formally declares that the revolution is "socialist." In Havana, 10 counterrevolutionaries, including Humberto Sori Marin, Manuel Puig, and Regelio Gonzalez Corso are executed for treason.
April 20. Sorí Marin and Rogelio Gonzalez, CIA agents captured a few days before the Bay of Pigs invasion, are executed.
May. A record low rainfall creates one of the most severe droughts in the island's history.
May 1. In a speech, Castro refers to Cuba as a "socialist country."
May 5. At a meeting in the U.S. of the National Security Council, it is formally agreed that "U.S. policy toward Cuba should aim at the downfall of Castro."
May 8. In a major speech, Castro disassociates himself from prevailing "Communist ideas."
May 10. A resolution asking for an end to "the present drift towards American military intervention" in Cuba is published in the New York Times. The resolution is endorsed by 70 professors and writers (41 are members of the faculty at Harvard University). Among the signers are faculty members from Harvard, Boston University, Massachussetts Institute of Technology and Brandeis University: James Luther Adams, Lillian Hellman, David Owen, David Riesman, Noam Chomsky, Timothy Leary and others. The resolution also asks to "detach the Castro regime from the Commuist bloc by working for a relaxation of diplomatic tensions and a resumption of trade relations," and that we concentrate "constructive efforts on eliminating in other parts of Latin America the social conditions on which totalitarian nationalism feeds."
August 22. Che Guevara and Dick Goodwin meet secretly in Montevideo, Uruguay. Goodwin goes on to write a memo to President Kennedy describing the content of their meeting on August 22. The memo remains classified until 1993, and can now be found at the National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No. 269: http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB269/index.htm.
September 23. Five Cubans and one American are executed by firing squad for "counterrevolutionary activities" during the Bay of Pigs invasion.
[The unofficial count of executions by firing squad since January 1959 stands at 622.]
September 30. An article in the New York Times reports that the last of the casinos in Cuba have been officially closed.
November 3. At the White House, a program against the government of Fidel Castro is introduced by the name Operation Mongoose.
November 9. The U.S. Federal case against Rolando Masferrer Rojas is dismissed without explanation. He had been charged with violating U.S. neutrality laws by financing a 27-man invasion of Cuba.
November 16. In a speech at the University of Washington, President Kennedy states "We cannot as a free nation, compete with our adversaries in tactics of terror, assassination, false promises, counterfeit mobs and crises."
November 30. U.S. President John F. Kennedy authorizes Operation Mongoose, which aims to eliminate Fidel Castro and the Cuban Revolution. President Kennedy creates an inter-agency team to plan actions against Cuba. The new Special Group Augmented includes new CIA director John McCone, national security adviser McGeorge Bundy, from the Dept. of State U. Alexis Johnson, from the Defense Department Roswell Gilpatric and from the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Lyman Lemnitzer. Also included were General Maxwell Taylor and Robert Kennedy, with Secretary of State Dean Rusk and Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara as occasional participants. General Lansdale is named Chief of Operations.
December 2. Castro declares himself a "Marxist-Leninist."
Louis A. Pérez, Jr.,
from his book Cuba, between Reform and Revolution, 2nd Edition Pg. 343
"After 1961, one of the key elements of U.S. policy against Cuba was to isolate Cuba economically as a way to disrupt the Cuban economy, increase domestic distress, and encourage internal discontent-all designed to weaken the regime from within."

January 22. Under U.S. encouragement, the Organization of American States (OAS) suspends Cuban membership.
February 4. Castro responds to Cuba's suspension from the OAS with the Second Declaration of Havana, calling upon the people of Latin America to rise up against imperialism and declaring, "The duty of a revolutionary is to make the revolution."
February 7. President Kennedy broadens the partial trade restrictions imposed by Eisenhower to a ban on all trade with Cuba, except for non-subsidized sale of foods and medicines.
February 15. An assortment of U.S. naval vessels (including aircraft carriers) gather about the Cuban coastine.
March. Food rationing begins.
March 21. From a U.S. National Intelligence Estimate on Cuba:
1) Forces available to the regime to suppress insurrection or repel invasion have been and are being greatly improved, with substantial Bloc assistance through provision of material and instruction;
2) Castro and the Revolution retain the positive support of at least a quarter of the population;
3) There is active resistance in Cuba, but it is limited, uncoordinated, unsupported, and desperate. The regime, with all the power of repression at its disposal, has shown that it can contain the present level of resistance activity;
4) The regime's apparatus for surveillance and repression should be able to cope with any popular tendency toward active resistance. Any impulse toward widespread revolt is inhibited by the fear which the apparatus inspires, and also by the lack of dynamic leadership and of any expectation of liberation within the foreseeable future.
March 23. President Kennedy expands the Cuban embargo to include imports of all goods made from or containing Cuban materials, even if made in other countries.
May 7. In Washington, Sheffield Edwards and Lawrence Houston meet with Attorney General Robert Kennedy and "brief him all the way" on efforts against Castro involving the "criminal underworld." According to the Inspector General's Report on Plots to Assassinate Fidel Castro (released to the public on 6/23/1998) Kennedy responds: "I trust that if you ever try to do business with organized crime again-with gansters-you will let the Attorney General know before you do it."
May 29. A high-level Soviet delegation that includes Marshal S. S. Biryuzov, commander of the Strategic Rocket Forces, and a high-level delegation, arrives secretly in Havana to suggest the deployment of nuclear weapons in Cuba.
July 2. Raul Castro, Minister of the Armed Forces, arrives in Moscow.
July 26. In Washington, a memo from Bob Hurwitch, Deputy Director of the Office of Caribbean and Mexican Affairs, asserts that: "State believes it needs a virtual civil war situation in Cuba before intervention in Cuba with US military force might be considered politically feasible." [Doc. No. 361, page 885, Foreign Relations of the United States, Cuba, 1961-1963, Volume X.]
Between January and August, 5,780 counterrevolutionary actions are reportedly carried out in Cuba. 716 involve sabotage of important economic objectives.
August 26. The U.S. Coast Guard impounds two boats in Marathon, Florida, after members of the Florida-based "Student Revolutionary Directorate" used them to fire automatic weapons at Havana beachfront buildings the night before. The 23 members of the expedition are not arrested, and no charges are brought against them.
August 31. In Washington, a memo from General Lansdale (Chief of Operation Mongoose) outlines the objectives of Operation Mongoose, Phase II: a. Discredit and isolate the regime; b. Harass the economy; c. Intensify intelligence collection; d. plit regime leadership and relations with Bloc; e. Assist Cuban exile groups and Latin American governments to take actions; f. Be prepared to exploit a revolt. [Document number 399, page 974, Foreign Relations of the United States, Cuba, 1961-1963, Volume X.]
September 3. U.S. senators George Smathers, Strom Thurmond and Kenneth B. Keating propose direct aggression against Cuba. They suggest sponsoring a NATO-like military alliance that can deal with "the Cuban problem."
September 8. Soviet freighter Omsk arrives in Cuba with the first shipment of MRBMs.
September 15. Soviet freighter Poltava arrives in Cuba with the second shipment of MRBMs.
September 27. In Havana, five CIA agents are arrested and large quantities of weapons are confiscated.
October 2. U.S. government cables all Latin American governments and NATO countries new measures to tighten the economic embargo against Cuba.
October 4. In Washington, according to a memo from from Director of Central Intelligence John McCone; "General Lansdale was instructed to give consideration to new and more dynamic approaches, the specific items of sabotage should be brought forward immediately and new ones conceived, that a plan mining harvors should be developed and presented, and the possibility of capturing Castro forces for interrogation should be studied." (Doc No. 8 – http://www.state.gov/www/about_state/history/frusXI/01_25.html)
October 12. In Washington, a memo from Edwin M. Martin (Assistant Secretary of State for Inter-American Affairs) to U. Alexis Johnson (Deputy Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs) outlines a 2-track course of covert action against Cuba. "Track one would consist of a heightened effort to move along the present Mongoose lines. The minimum objective there would be harassment: the maximum objective would be the triggering of a situation where there might be conflict at the top of the Cuban regime leading, hopefully, to its change or overthrow by some group within Cuba commanding arms."
"Track two would consist of an effort to engage Cubans more deeply, both within Cuba and abroad, in efforts of their own liberation." (Doc No. 14 – http://www.state.gov/www/about_state/history/frusXI/01_25.html)
October 14. The Cuban Missile Crisis begins when U.S. reconnaissance aircraft photograph Soviet construction of intermediate-range missile sites in Cuba.
President Kennedy demands the withdrawal of Soviet missiles and imposes a naval blockade. Khrushchev agrees on condition that Cuba receives guarantee of non-aggression from the U.S. and Jupiter missiles aimed at the Soviet Union are removed from Turkey.
October 24. A naval quarantine of the island beings.
October 25. Soviet officials agree to remove the nuclear missiles from Cuba.
October 30. The Special Group (Augmented) orders General Lansdale to "cease all sabotage and paramilitary operations during the coming negotiations with Cuba." This is the official end of Operation Mongoose.
November 12. At a meeting in Washington, Desmond FitzGerald (CIA Director of Plans) points out that the CIA has three kinds of agent activities in Cuba: "1. Singleton, 2. Collection nets, and 3. Agents involved in "black net" operations. "While there is encouraging improvement in the geographical spread of these agents, there is still, understandably, a fairly heavy concentration of agents in the Havana area." (Doc No. 376 – http://www.state.gov/www/about_state/history/frusXI/376_390.html)
November 20. The naval quarantine that surrounded Cuba since October 24 is lifted. At a press conference, President Kennedy states that as long as Cuba commits no aggressive acts against any nation in the western hemisphere, it was never the intention of the United States to invade Cuba.
December 24. The U.S. exchanges $53 million of medicines and baby food for 1,113 exiles captured in the "Bay of Pigs" invasion. A few prisioners remain until 1986.
December 29. In Miami, President Kennedy meets with survivors of the 2506 Brigade in a ceremony televised from the Orange Bowl. Pepe San Roman gives JFK the brigade's flag to hold for safekeeping, and Kennedy says "I can assure you that this flag will be returned to the brigade in a free Havana." The book American Spy by E. Howard Hunt, reveals that the "flag was a replica," and that the the presentation almost didn't take place because of the animosity by brigade members against JFK.

January 25. New York attorney James Donovan meets with Fidel Castro to negotiate the release of 22 Americans imprisoned in Cuba.
February 8. The Kennedy administration prohibits travel to Cuba and makes financial and commercial transactions with Cuba illegal for U.S. citizens.
March 4. James Donovan (who negotiated the release of Bay of Pigs prisoners) conducts secret talks with Fidel Castro on behalf of the Kennedy administration. The memo remains classified until 1997, and can now be found at the National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No. 269: http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB269/index.htm.
March 13. At the University of Havana, 3 men are discoveed by security police preparing to shoot Prime Minister Fidel Castro with a sniper's rifle.
March 18. Members of Alpha 66 attach a Soviet vessel anchored in Cuban waters. 12 Soviet soldiers are wounded.
March 19. In Washington, members of Alpha 66 hold a press conference to take credit for yesterday's attack on the Soviet ship Lvov. Alpha 66 leader Veciana says their purpose is "to wage psychological warfare against the government of Premier Fidel Castro and the Soviet troops supporting him."
March 26. Cuban exiles attack a Soviet ship (the Baku) docked in Cuban waters at Caibarien. A journalist from Life Magazine, Andrew St. George, is along for the ride.
March 30. In Washington, the State and Justice Departments jointly announce they will take "every step necessary" to ensure that exile violence against Cuba does not emerge from "U.S. territory."
April 3. In a meeting at the White House that includes Cyrus Vance, Richard Helms, McGeorge Bundy and additional staff from the State Department and the CIA, President Kennedy objects to exile groups holding press conferences after illegal aggressions against Cuba.
April 11. At a Cuba Coordinating Committee meeting in Washington, Desmond FitzGerald (Chief, Task Force W) presents three sabotage targets for the months of April and May: a railway bridge, a petroleum storage facility and a molasses storage vessel. It is concluded that "this will meet the President's desire for some noise level and for some action in the immediate future."
April 22. Liza Howard of ABC News conducts a 5-hour interview with Fidel Castro. She later reports to the CIA that "Castro is seeking rapprochement with the U.S." She adds that in her opinion Che Guevara, Raul Castro and Vilma Espin are opposed to any idea of rapprochement.
April 27. Castro begins a 5-week visit to the Soviet Union.
May 28. In a memo from Gordon Chase (National Security Council) to McGeorge Bundy (Special Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs) regarding "Cuban Exiles" in the Miami area, the following organizations are identified:
"Left. The Second National Front of Escambray, Alpha-66, the Anti-Communist Liberation Front, and elements of the People's Revolutionary Movement and the 30th of November Movement have reached a working agreement. Although the working agreement is essentially action-oriented, the member organizations tend to the view that the original revolution promised by Castro should be reclaimed and redirected. The adherence of Manuel Ray's Revolutionary Junta (JURE) would increase the influence of this grouping, which probably has the most potential appeal to Castro's opponents within Cuba, but which is an object of concern to more conservative exiles.
"Center. Revolutionary Unity (UR), Revolutionary Recuperation Movement (MRP), Christian Democratic Movement (MDC), Revolutionary Student Directorate (DRE), and other less well-organized center groups, have held aloof from attempts at unity.
"Right. The Alliance for Cuban Liberty (ALC), and the Association for Economic Recovery of Cuba (AREC) have had difficulty attracting adherents. They principally look to the return of their lost property, rather than action and politics. Recent discussions by these groups with U.S. nationals promising large-scale financial support appear to have had no results."
Further down the document states that "So far the efforts toward unity have been tentative and competitive. Political divisions, both ideological and personal, are deep and there appears to be little disposition or ability to effect a real accommodation of views. The groups on the left distrust those on the right and vice versa; the center groups are wary of both. Any formula for unity would have to be so diluted as to be almost meaningless. Moreover, the ability of a united exile organization to reflect, to any meaningful degree, the attitudes and aspirations of those within Cuba would be minimal." (Doc. No. 345, http://www.state.gov/www/about_state/history/frusXI/326_350.html)
June 19. President Kennedy approves a CIA program titled: "Proposed Covert Policy and Integrated Program of Action toward Cuba," presented to the Standing Group on June 8. The plan renews support for exile attacks on selected Cuban targets which include transportation facilities, power plants, fuel production and storage operations.
July 9. All Cuban-owned assets in the United States are frozen.
September 7. In a 3-hour interview with Associated Press reporter Daniel Harker, Castro indicates that he's aware of CIA plots to kill him, and adds that U.S. leaders also "may not be safe."
October. In Prologue to the Cuban Revolution, Robin Blackburn writes: "The Cuban Revolution is now widely recognized as an event of world-hsitorical importance. For the first time there has been a socialist revolution in the Americas… The universal significance of the Cuban Revolution makes it one of the decisive phenomena of our time."
November 14. Four Cubans are executed in Havana's Cabaña Fortress. Argimiro Fonseca Fernández, Wilfredo Alfonso Ibáñez, Israel Rodríguez Lima and Erasmo Machín Garia had been charged with infiltrating Cuba to find "spots along the island's beaches where arms could be landed."
November 17. President Kennedy asks French journalist Jean Daniel to tell Castro that he is now ready to negotiate normal relations and drop the embargo. According to former Press Secretary Pierre Salinger, "If Kennedy had lived I am confident that he would have negotiated that agreement and dropped the embargo because he was upset with the way the Soviet Union was playing a strong role in Cuba and Latin America…"
November 22. U.S. President John F. Kennedy is assassinated.
November 29. Composer Ernesto Lecuona dies in Santa Cruz de Nenerife, Spain.
December 2. Cuba announces the formation of the United Party of Socialist Revolution, which unites representatives from various groups, including the Popular Socialist Party (the former communist party).
Using Soviet-supplied equipment, Cuba becomes the first nation in the Western Hemisphere to jam radio broadcasts. The first apparent target being the anti-Castro stations in the U.S.

January 7. Castro tells American journalist Herbert L. Matthews that Cubans had put forward the idea of Soviet missiles on the island.
February 12. Castro sends a verbal message to President Lyndon B. Johnson through Lisa Howard of ABC News.
June. Castro's sister, Juanita Castro, defects, and becomes a prominent radio commentator in Miami. (In 2001 she is appointed director of Radio-TV Martí by President G.W. Bush.)
July 6. In a New York Times interview with reporter Richard Eder, Castro makes a peaceful offer to the US. that includes ending material aid to Latin American revolutionaries and the release of political prisoners in Cuba. The Department of State immediately issues a sharp rejection; Cuba must first end its dependency on the Soviets, and cease to support revolutionary groups in Latin America.
In The Closest of Enemies, author Wayne Smith writes,
"I was bothered by the hardness of our demands. How could Castro break ties with the Soviet Union before reaching an accommodation with us? How could he renounce Soviet military assistance when he still faced a hostile United States? How could he renounce Moscow's economic aid without being certain of finding another benefactor? Obviously, he couldn't. Clearly, we did not wish to talk to Castro. Our hard reply was simply a way of saying no without appearing to do so." Pg. 88.
June 16. Look magazine runs a prelude to the book The Invisible Government by David Wise and Thomas B. Ross, which reveals that Miami's Zenith Technical Enterprises, Inc., is a cover for a CIA operation. At the time, this was the largest CIA station in the world after Langley.
July 26. The Organization of American States (OAS) adopts mandatory sanctions against Cuba, requiring all members to sever diplomatic and trade relations. Only Mexico refuses to comply.
July 26. In a speech given in Santiago de Cuba, Castro reiterates the peaceful overtures made to the US in the July 6 interview in the New York Times.
November 3. Roberto S. Sanchez Vilella is elected governor of Puerto Rico.
October 14. Khrushchev is ousted as First Secretary and Premier of the Soviet Union.
December 12. Cuban exiles fire a bazooka at UN headquarters in New York during a speech by Che Guevara to the General Assembly.

February 18. Cuba and the Soviet Union sign a 5-year agreement that reschedules payment of Cuban debt (about $500 million).
February 26. In Algiers, Che Guevara speaks about the mistakes of the revolution.
April 1. Che Guevara resigns his Cuban citizenship and leaves to wage armed struggle in Latin America.
May 1. Che writes a farewell letter to Fidel Castro.
October 3. The new Communsit Party of Cuba is inaugurated.
October 10. Hundreds of Cubans begin to leave the island from Camarioca (a small fishing port). The port is opened to foreign boats, and within two months about 7,500 refugees have arrived in the U.S.
December 1. The Cuban airlift begins. In its first year, the airlift brings more than 45,000 refugees – only about 5% require federal assistance, and only for a short time.
December. The United Nations General Assembly adopts a "Declaration of the Inadmissibility of Intervention in the Domestic Affairs of States and the Protection of their Independence and Sovereignty." It says that "no state shall organize, assist, foment, finance, incite or tolerate subversive, terrorist or armed activities directed toward the violent overthrow of another state, or interfere in civil strife in another state."

January 3-15. Cuba hosts the first Tricontinental Conference, from which are founded the Organization for Solidarity with the Peoples of Africa, Asia and Latin America (OSPAAL) and the Organization for Latin American Solidarity (LASO).
February 13. Cuba announces a new trade agreement with the Soviet Union that includes credits for $91 million.
November 2. U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson signs into law the Cuban Adjustment Act, which exempts Cuban immigrants from general U.S. migration laws. Any Cuban who has reached U.S. territory since January 1, 1959 is eligible for permanent residency after two years. 123,000 Cubans immediately apply for permanent status.
December 29. U.S. Air Force pilot Everett Jackson is shot down over Cuba and captured after dropping arms and equipment intended for counterrevolutionaries in Las Villas province.

January 2. Rolando Masferrer Rojas and 67 others are arrested in Marathon, Florida, for an alleged plot to invade Haiti and then Cuba. Among the weapons seized by U.S. federal agents are machine guns, handguns and knives.
January 2. In the article "Cuba: Eight Years of Revolution," Herbert Matthews writes in the New York Times:"There have been improvements in child care, public health, housing, roads and the typical leveling down of the whole social and economic structure that accompanies revolutionary "equality." This also means, however, that the poorest and most backward elements, especially in the rural areas, have been "leveled up." Cuban Negroes, for the first time, have equal status with whites, economically and socially."
August 1. The first meeting of the Latin American Solidarity Organization (LASO) opens in Havana.
October 9. Che Guevara is killed in Bolivia by U.S.-trained rangers in the village of Vallegrande.
On economic performance.

January 2. The Cuban government announces petroleum rationing due to a cutback in deliveries from the Soviet Union.
January 11. Two British journalists are arrested and then expelled after photographing military sites in Havana. They are identified as Peter Davis and Joy Searl.
January 13. Castro offers to trade 100 political prisoners for the remains of Che Guevara (currently in Bolivia).
January 18. In Havana, an American pilot is captured when his small plane is shot down after dropping a cargo of weapons for counterrevolutionaries. The pilot is identified as Everett Jackson, age 27.
January 21. A bomb explodes on a B-25 plane at Miami International Airport. The departure is delayed, as the explosion damages only a wing. The plane was to carry medicines to Cuba.
January 22. Dr. Eliodoro Martinez Jonco replaces Dr. José Ramon Machado Ventura as Cuba's Health Minister.
January 23. Raul Castro (Minister of the Armed Forces and Second Secretary to the Cuban Communist Party, convenes a meeting of the party's Central Committee to hold a trial of 37 members (including Anibal Escalante) for "microfactionalist activities" which include "encouraging the Soviet Union to apply economic sanctions against Cuba." The charges amount to treason. It is asseted that had the microfaction succeeded, "it would have subordinated Cuban sovereignty" to the Soviets.
January 25. In Miami, 2 businesses who regularly ship packages to Cuba are bombed before dawn. The anti-Castro group "El Poder Cubano" (Cuban Power), takes credit for the bombings, and claims that "Servicios Especializados" and "All Cargo Transport, Inc." were "doing business with Cuba."
January 28. Anibal Escalante and eight others are expelled from the Communsit Party as a result of their "microfactionalist activities."
February 3. Eastern Airlines Flight 7 from Newark to Miami (with 193 passengers) is hijacked to Havana. The plane carries 193 passengers, and marks the 5th hijacking for Eastern Airlines this year.
March 13. Castro launches the "revolutionary offensive" which nationalizes 55,000 small businesses and leads to state control of nearly all trades and services.
March 23. A new economic agreement with the Soviet Union reveals a 13% decrease from the previous year.
June 5. U.S. Senator Robert F. Kennedy is shot in Los Angeles, California. He dies the next day.
August 23. Castro endorses the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia (on August 20).
September 16. Orlando Bosch and others fire a bazooka at a Polish freighter docked in the port of Miami. Bosch goes to jail for the act, and is paroled in 1972.
Women comprise 15.6% of the Cuban work force.

January 2. The Cuban government announces sugar rationing.
February 16. Eastern Airlines Flight 1 from Newark to Miami is hijacked to Cuba. The plane lands in Havana.
July 26. Castro announces the start of a campaign to produce ten million tons of sugar in the next harvest.
August 8. According to a survey in Granma, Cuba's official newspaper, more than 75% of Cuban women have chosen not to enter the workforce.
August 25. TWA Flight 134 from Las Vegas to Philadelphia is hijacked to Cuba. The Boeing 727, with 80 passengers and a 6-person crew, lands in Havana's José Martí Airport at 10:21 p.m.
December. The first contingent of the Venceremos Brigade, a group of voluteer workers from the U.S., arrives in Cuba to work on the sugar harvest.
Women comprise 17.7% of the Cuban work force.
A report of the Cuban Academy of Sciences asserts that the Cuban family is in a state of crisis.

May 19. Castro announces that Cuba missed it's goal to produce 10 million tons of sugar by 15% (managing 8.5 million tons, the largest harvest in Cuban history).
August. The "Brigades of Militant Mothers for Education" is founded. It's goal is, in part, to encourage women to enter the labor force.
September 25. The U.S. warns the Soviet Union to discontinue construction of a nuclear submarine base in Cienfuegos.
By this time, more than 85 percent of Cuban trade is with the USSR or Eastern Block countries.

March 20. Poet Herberto Padilla is arrested and detained for 39 days.
April 17. In Miami, a few hundred Cuban exiles gather to dedicate a monument to the 10-year anniversary of the Bay of Pigs invasion.
September 12. In Puerto Rico, on the 80th anniversary of Albizu Campos' birth, 80,000 people march through San Juan demanding independence. This is the largest demonstration in the island's history.
November 10. Castro arrives in Chile for a three-week visit, his first to a Latin American country since 1959.
November 18. In a question and answer period with students at the University of Concepción, Chile, Castro tells how he became a communist.
November 28. In Chile, Castro talks about Che Guevara.
October 2. Bola de Nieve dies in Mexico.

The Center for Cuban Studies is established in New York to promote cultural and academic exchange.
May 3. Castro begins a 63-day tour of Africa, Eastern Europe, and the Soviet Union.
July 11. Cuba joins the Council of Mutual Economic Assistance (CMEA), an economic organization of the Soviet Union, East European socialist countries, and Mongolia.
August 28. At the United Nations, Cuba requests that in light of adopted resolution 1541 (12/14/60) that the UN declare that Puerto Rico has a right to self-determination.
November 19. Cuba accepts a U.S. proposal to begin formal negotiations over the problem of airline hijackings.

February 15. Cuba and the U.S. sign an antihijacking agreement.
April 6. Eastern Airlines flight 8894 lands at Miami International Airport at 11:55 A.M. with the last 84 passengers of the Cuban airlift. Since 1965, 3,049 flights had brought 260,561 Cubans to the U.S., making this the largest airborne refugee operation in American history.
November 15. The 13th Congress of the Cuban Labor Confederation ties wages to productivity in an effort to improve efficiency.
The Committees for the defense of the Revolution (CDR) celebrates its 13th year. According to Cuba's official newspaper Granma, the total membership is now about 4,750,000.

January 28. Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev arrives in Cuba for a week-long visit.
September 11. OMEGA 7, an anti-Castro paramilitary group is founded in the U.S.
September 28. U.S. Senators Claiborne Pell (D-Rhode Island) and Jacob Javits (R-New York) visit Cuba. They are the first U.S. elected officials to visit the island since the break of diplomatic relations.
November. Assistant Secretary of State William Rogers and Assistant to the Secretary of State Lawrence Eagleburger conduct secret normalization talks with Cuban officials in Washington and New York. The talks end over Cuban involvement in Angola.
December. In a speech, Castro admits that "after more than 15 years of Revolution,women's rights rights are an area in which we are still politically and culturally behind."
Women comprise 12.7% of membership in the Communist Party.

February 9. In a TV interview from Mexico City, U.S. Senator Edward M. Kennedy urges the U.S. government to lift the embargo and normalize relations with Cuba. "I believe the idea of isolating Cuba was a mistake," says Kennedy. "It has been ineffective. Whatever the reasons and justifications may have been at the time, now they are invalid."
February 21. Cuban exile leader Luciano Nieves is assassinated after coming out in support for dialogue with Cuba.
March 1. Maurice A. Ferré, Mayor of Miami, asks Attorney General Edward H. Levi for federal help to combat "violence in the Cuban exile community that the police regard as politically motivated. Mayor Ferré sites the assassination of Luciano Nieves, and the bombings of TV station WKID in Dania, among other incidents. Mayor Ferré estimates that the actual terrorists number less than 2-dozen.
April. A government survey seeks to discover why so few women ran in the 1974 People's Power elections and why so few were elected.
July 28. The Organization of American States (OAS) votes to end political and economic sanctions against Cuba. This opens the way for each member nation to decide whether to have diplomatic and trade relations with Cuba, which many had already established.
August 21. The U.S. announces that it will allow foreign subsidiaries of U.S. companies to sell products in Cuba, and that it will no longer penalize other nations for trade with Cuba.
October 31. In Miami, Rolando Masferrer Rojas is killed by a bomb planted in his car.
November 5. At the request of the newly inaugurated Angolan government, Cuba sends a large contingent of troops to help the Angolans repel an invasion by South African forces launched on October 23.
November 20. The U.S. Senate Select Intelligence Committee releases its 347 page interim report on CIA assassination plots against foreign leaders. The report identifies over eight attempted plots to kill Castro between 1960 and 1965, as well as additional plans against other Cuban leaders.
December 14. An article runs in the New York Times titled "Sentiment Against Cubans Is Found Growing in Miami Over the Terrorism Linked to Anti-Castro Exiles." In the article, author George Volsky writes, "A strong and growing anti-Cuban sentiment has become evident here in recent weeks, principally a result of a wave of terrorism attributed by law enforcement agencies to anti-Castro exiles." The article adds that in the last 10 days 9 powerful bombs have exploded, and that 100 bombs have exploded in the past 18 months, but there have been no arrests.
December 17-22. The First Congress of the Communist Party of Cuba is held in Havana. It adopts party statues, a programmatic platform, and approves the draft of the constitution.
December 20. President Ford announces that Cuban involvement in Angola prevents the possibility of restoring full diplomatic relations in the near future.
Women comprise 25% of the Cuban work force.
Of the Communist Party's Central Committee's 100 members, 6 are women.

Cuba gets new constitution; becomes socialist state. Among the changes is the establishment of new administrative division of the island. Instead of the 6 provinces left over from Spanish rule (Pinar del Río, La Habana, Matanzas, Las Villas, Camagüey, Oriente) the island is divided into 14 provinces: Pinar del Rio, La Habana, City of La Habana, Matanzas, Cienfuegos, Villa Clara, Santi Spiritus, Ciego de Avila, Camagüey, Las Tunas, Granma, Holguín, Santiago de Cuba, and Guantánamo.
February 24. The Family Code is adopted. It seeks to preserve and strengthen families, promote social changes and increase the participation of women in Cuban society.
April 5. U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger states that there is no possibility of U.S. relations with Cuba while Cuba has troops in Africa.
October 6. Cuban airliner crashes after an explosion nine minutes out of Barbados, killing 73 people, most of them teenagers. Luis Posada Carrilles, an anti-Castro activist trained by the CIA, is charged with the bombing. In 1998, Carrilles admits to (and later denies) over a decade of anti-Castro terrorist activities funded by the Cuban-American National Foundation (CANF), a Miami-based non-profit organization and the most powerful lobby in Washington.
October 15. At a mass funeral for the victims of the October 6 bombing, Castro blames the sabotage on the CIA.
October. Orlando Bosch is arrested in Venezuela in connection with downing of the Cuban airliner that killed 73 people.
December 3. Fidel Castro is elected president of the State Council, which, under the new constitution, consolidates the previous positions of president and prime minister. The new president serves as head of state, head of government, and commander in chief of the Armed Forces.
600,000 women work outside the home. | Government operates 654 nurseries throughout the island serving about 48,000 families.

March 19. U.S. President Carter drops the ban on travel to Cuba and on U.S. citizens spending dollars in Cuba.
April 27. The U.S. and Cuba sign a maritime boundary and fishing rights accord.
May 25. The U.S. State Department warns that Cuba's recent deployment of military advisors in Ethiopia could "impede the improvement of U.S.-Cuban relations."
September. The U.S. and Cuba open interests sections in each other’s capitals.
November 5. Somalia expels all Soviet advisors and breaks diplomatic relations with Cuba, citing the presence of Cuban and Soviet advisors in Ethiopia.
Mid-December. Cuban combat troops begin to arrive in Ethiopia (eventually totaling nearly 20,000).

January. At the request of the Ethiopian government, thousands of Cuban troops, supported and led by Soviet, East German and Cuban officers, help repel a Somali invasion of Ethiopia.
February 27. U.S. Secretary of State, Cyrus Vance, states that he does not foresee the normalization of relations with Cuba due to the presence of Cuban troops in Africa.
July 31. Castro calls for the removal of U.S. military bases from Guantanamo Bay. Bombings of the Cuban United Nations Mission, the Cuban Interests Section, and the Soviet Mission by anti-Castro exile groups follow throughout the fall.
September 9. In New York, Cuban exiles bomb the Cuban Mission to the United Nations.
December. U.S. government announces that the full force of the law will be used against those responsible for the July terorist actions. (As far as I'm aware, no serious inquiry or arrest takes place other than the standard investigation by local police.)

January 1. Cuban-Americans are permitted to visit their families in Cuba. More than 100,000 visit in the coming year.
June 19. In the U.S., Rep. Ted Weiss (D-NY) introduces unsuccessful legislation to end the U.S. trade blockade against Cuba and re-establish diplomatic relations.
July. Cuba develops close relations with the Sandinista government in Nicaragua. (Since 1977, Cuba supported the Sandanista insurgency against Anastasio Somoza's rule.)
September 3-9. At a meeting of the sixth sumit of the Nonaligned Movement in Havana, Castro is elected chair of the movement and serves until 1982.
November 1. A new penal code takes effect, replacing the criminal code passed in 1936.
November 6. The first contingent of volunteer Cuban teachers leave for Nicaragua.
In competitive sports, Cuban women comprise 17 percent of participants. | Women make up almost half of all university students and half of the medical students.

1980-1999 – 1

March 12. In Grenada, Cubans begin to work on a new international airport.
March. Farmers are allowed to sell the surplus to their state quotas in "farmer's markets" where prices are unregulated and transactions are between private individuals.
April 1. 12 people crash a minibus through the gates of the Peruvian Embassy in Havana and seek asylum. Within the week, embassy guards are removed and Peru opens the embassy grounds to those who wish to enter. Over 7,000 storm the Peruvian embassy.
April 21. Cuba announces that anyone who wishes to leave the country could be picked up at the port of Mariel. The Mariel Boatlift continues until September and brings 125,000 new refugees to the U.S.
September 11. Félix García Rodríguez, an attache of the Cuban Mission to the United Nations is asassinated. Secretary of State Muskie calls the murder "reprehensible."
Women account for 27.3 percent of the Cuban labor force.

January. Ronald Reagan is innaugurated as U.S. president, and institutes the most hostile policy against Cuba since the invasion at Bay of Pigs. Despite conciliatory signals from Cuba, the new U.S. administration announces a tightening of the embargo.
In the U.S., Jorge Mas Canosa founds the Cuban-American National Foundation (CANF), which quickly becomes the most influential proponent of a hard-line policy against Cuba.
October 30. The U.S. Navy begins four weeks of exercises in the Caribbean. (On November 6, Pentagon officials state that the maneuvers are expected to send a message to Cuba.)
October 31. Cuba mobilizes its reserves and goes on full alert in preparation for an anticipated U.S. invasion.
November 23. In Mexico, Cuban Vice-President Carlos Rafael Rodríguez and U.S. Secretary of State Alexander Haig meet secretly but reach no agreements.

April 19. The Reagan Administration reestablishes the travel ban, prohibits U.S. citizens from spending money in Cuba, and allows the 1977 fishing accord to lapse.
June 16. At the U.N., Cuban Vice-President Rodríguez states that Cuba has almost doubled its military strength since 1981 in response to the aggressiveness of the Reagan Administration.

An agreement to refinance Cuba's foreign debt is signed in Paris.
October 25. The U.S. invades Grenada with 8,000 troops, occupies the island and establishes a provisional government. Of the 784 Cubans on the island, 636 were construction workers and 43 were military personnel. Invading troops capture 642 Cubans, kill 24, and wound 57.

March 19. Cuba and Angola outline conditions for the withdrawal of Cuban troops from Namibia and implementation of U.N. Security Council Resolution 435.
May 14. The U.S. Department of Defense reports that it will spend $43 million to refurbish Guantanamo Naval Base.
June 29. U.S. Presidential candidate Jesse Jackson leaves Cuba after a series of meetings that result in the release of 26 prisoners, further openings for the church in Cuba, and the agreement to open talks on immigration issues with the U.S.
December 14. Cuba and the U.S. reach an agreement on an immigration program under which 2,746 refugees (Marielitos) are returned to Cuba, and the U.S. agrees to permit the immigration of 20,000 Cubans annually. (In fact, only about 2,000 applicants per year are allowed.)

January 1. A new housing law takes effect under which occupants of rental property (house or apartment rented from the state) are permitted to purchase and ultimately sell their dwellings.
January 24. Five U.S. Catholic Church leaders meet with Castro and high Cuban officials. This follows the opening earlier in the month of the Office of Religious Affairs, which signals improved relations between churches and the Cuban government.
May 20. RADIO MARTÍ, backed by Reagan Republicans and Cuban hard-liners, begins to broadcast news and information from the U.S. to Cuba. [In protest of these broadcasts, Cuba cancels the existing immigration agreement with the U.S.]
October 4. U.S. President Ronald Reagan bans travel to the U.S. by Cuban government officials or their representatives, which includes most students, scholars, and artists.

February 17. The Cuban Catholic Church hosts an international conference about the Church in Cuba. Attending are bishops from most Latin American countries and the U.S., and includes a representative from the Vatican.
April 11. The Soviet Union agrees to a 5-year, $3 billion program of economic credit and aid to Cuba.
May 18. Farmer's markets (legal since 1980) are banned.

Infant mortality is down to 13.6:1000 (lowest in South America and lower than the U.S.).
March 11. The United Nations Human Rights Commission votes down a U.S. resolution that harshly criticizes Cuba for alleged human rights violations.
May 28. An Official in the Cuban Air Force defects to the U.S. Throughout the summer, General Rafael del Pino speaks on Radio Martí charging the Cuban leadership with a lack of morale.
July 6. Cuban television begins airing a 7-part documentary about the espionage activities carried out by U.S. officials stationed in the U.S. Interests Section in Havana.
August 13. After a two-day meeting with Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega, Fidel Castro asserts that Cuba would be willing to abide by agreements that call for the removal of all foreign military advisers from Central America.
November 20. The U.S. and Cuba restore the immigration agreement cancelled in 1985.

The Cuban Revolution turns 30 years old.
February-March. A delegation of U.S. human rights leaders inspect Cuban prisons as part of an exchange agreement under which a Cuban delegation would later inspect U.S. prison facilities. The U.S. group reports that conditions in the prisons are generally no worse than those in U.S. prisons, that there is no evidence of systematic abuses, and that some practices such as conjugal visits are more humane than those in the U.S.
April 21. John Cardinal O'Connor, Archbishop of New York, meets with Fidel Castro in Havana. It is the first visit by a Roman Catholic cardinal to Cuba since 1959.
November 8. Rafael Hernández Colón is reelected governor of Puerto Rico.

The Berlin wall falls.
May. The U.S. State Dept. denies Orlando Bosch asylum due to his "career in terrorism."
August 17. According to an article in the New York Times, Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen meets with President Bush to negotiate a release for Orlando Bosch.

March 23. TV Martí, an anti-Castro, U.S.-taxpayer-funded station is launched. The signal is jammed by the Cuban government.
June. The Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture in Miami is bombed for exhibiting work by artists living in Cuba.
July 17. The U.S. Justice Department reverses itself and frees convicted terrorist Orlando Bosch.
July 18. Orlando Bosch receives a presidential pardon from President Bush.
October. The U.S. Congress passes the Mack Amendment, which prohibits all trade with Cuba by subsidiaries of U.S. companies located outside the U.S., and proposes sanctions or cessation of aid to any country that buys sugar or other products from Cuba.
Read a brief excerpt from Jacobo Timerman's "Cuba: A Journey."| Read a brief excerpt from the introduction to C. Peter Ripley's "Conversations With Cuba."
Women comprise 38 percent of the Cuban labor force. | The government operates about 1,100 day-care centers throughout the country.

Soviet troops leave Cuba. | Women comprise 21.5% of the Communist Party.
April. Under the direction of Carlos Aldana, the Central Committee of the Cuban Communist Party approves the establishment of an email connection between Cuba and Canada.
October. After Cuba's 4th Party Congress, only 5 of the Political Bureau's members from 1975 are still at their posts.
Of 225 party members elected, 37 (16%) are women.
December 8. The Soviet Union disbands, ending economic subsidies worth approximately $6 billion annually.

January. Email link between Cuba and Canada is finally established.
February 5. U.S. Congressman Robert Torricelli introduces the Cuban Democracy Act, and says the bill is designed to "wreak havoc on the island."
June 15. From an editorial in the NY Times:
"…This misnamed act (the Cuban Democracy Act) is dubious in theory, cruel in its potential practice and ignoble in its election-year expediency… An influential faction of the Cuban American community clamors for sticking it to a wounded regime… There is, finally, something indecent about vociferous exiles living safely in Miami prescribing more pain for their poorer cousins."
October 7. From an offshore speedboat, a group of "Comandos L" fires shots at the Hotel Melia on Varadero Beach. When Cuba formally protests to the State Department, the protest is referred to the Justice Department, which in turn asks the FBI to investigate. Comandos L carry out at least eight raids against Cuba this year.
October 15. U.S. Congress passes the Cuban Democracy Act, which prohibits foreign-based subsidiaries of U.S. companies from trading with Cuba, travel to Cuba by U.S. citizens, and family remittances to Cuba. The law allows private groups to deliver food and medicine to Cuba. (At this time, 70% of Cuba’s trade with U.S. subsidiary companies was in food and medicine. Many claim the Cuban Democracy Act is in violation of international law and United Nations resolutions that food and medicine cannot be used as weapons in international conflicts.)
October 23. President Bush signs the Cuban Democracy Act into law. Congressman Torricelli says that it will bring down Castro "within weeks."
November 3. Pedro Rosselló is elected governor of Puerto Rico.
November 24. The United Nations General Assembly votes heavily in favor of a measure introduced by Cuba asking for an end to the U.S. Embargo. The vote is 59 in favor, 3 against (the U.S., Israel and Romania), and 79 abstentions. State Department spokesman Joe Snyder in the LA Times; "The Cuban government, in violation of international law, expropriated billions of dollars worth of private property belonging to U.S. individuals and has refused to make reasonable restitution. The U.S. embargo – and I point out it's not a blockade – is therefore a legitimate response to the unreasonable and illegal behavior of the Cuban government."

January 7. At a news conference, Tony Bryant, leader of "Comandos L", announces plans for more raids atainst targets in Cuba, especially hotels. He warns tourists to stay off the island, adding that, "From this point on, we're at war. The Neutrality Act doesn't exist."
December 20. The United Nations General Assembly reprimands Iran, Iraq, Sudan and Cuba for abusing the human rights of their citizens. The vote on Cuba is 74-20, with 61 abstentions.

1980-1999 – 2

June 13. Mexican telecommunications company Grupo Domos signs an agreement with the Cuban Ministry of Communications to modernize the telephone network through a joint venture with the Cuban state.
July 13. At least 35 men, women and children die at sea when their tugboat (called the "13 de Marzo") sinks seven miles out of Havana. 31 survivors are picked up by the coast guard. Some claim that their boat was deliberately rammed by two other vessels that made no attempt to stop or rescue them.
August. Following Castro's declaration of an open migration policy, a new boat lift begins as economic conditions in Cuba continue to deteriorate. 32,000 Cubans are picked up by the US Coast Guard and taken to the US naval base in Guantanamo Bay. A "picketline" prevents additional seaborne migrations.
September 9. A migration agreement is reached between U.S. and Cuba, allowing for a minimum of 20,000 immigrants per year.
November 1. A report issued by Americas Watch and the Fund for Free Expression called "Dangerous Dialogue: Attacks on Freedom of Expression in Miami's Cuban Exile Community" details attacks on academic freedoms and other serious restrictions on freedoms of expression for those who dissent from a rigid anti-Castro stand.
November 14. In Puerto Rico, a vote is held (not sponsored by the US government), asking Puerto Ricans to choose their political status in relation to the US. The results are as follows: 826,326 votes for commonwealth (48.6%), 788,296 for statehood (46.3%), and 75,620 for independence (4.4%). Blank ballots receive 1% of the vote.
October 26. For the 3rd year in a row, the United Nations General Assembly votes overwhelmingly for a measure to end the U.S. Embargo of Cuba. The vote is 101-2, with 48 abstentions, and only Israel votes with the U.S.
December 5. US President Bill Clinton approves the establishment of an Inter-Agency Working Group to "construct positions on issues related to Puerto Rico."

January 12. InterNIC grants CENIAI (The National Center for Automated Exchange of Information) a Class B internet address (allowing Cuba to join the internet).
May 2. An Immigration agreement is reaffirmed by Cuba and the U.S., providing for the direct return of rafters to the island.
July 13. In a small private plane belonging to Brothers to the Rescue, Jose Basulto takes his first illegal flight over Havana, dropping religious and anti-Castro flyers and bumper stickers. A cameraman from the Miami NBC affiliate is on board and the film airs on Miami television that evening.
October. Concilio Cubano is formed, bringing together over 100 political, humanitarian, union and professional groups that agree on five points: a nonviolent stance, an amnesty for all political prisoners, an orderly transition to democracy, a juridical system that assures human rights, and the right of all Cubans worldwide to participate in the transition.
November 2. The UN General Assembly recommends an end to the embargo (for the fourth consecutive year) by a vote of 117 to 3 (38 abstentions). Only Israel and Uzbekistan join the U.S. in saying no. Since then, each time the vote comes up at the UN, the number of nations voting against the embargo increases.

January. Cubaweb, the official Cuban web site, appears on the World Wide Web.
January 9 and 13. Planes belonging to "Brothers To The Rescue" fly over downtown Havana at low altitude, dropping leafletts calling on the Cuban people to opose their government.
January 15. "Brothers To The Rescue" pilot Jose Basulto is interviewed on Radio Martí (a station owned and operated by the U.S. government) and acknowledges that he had flown that mission over Havana and would do it again.
January 15. The Cuban government decides to crack down on exile groups such as "Consilio Cubano" and "Brothers To The Rescue," and tries to persuade the U.S. government to curb their actions. They issue loud warnings, including an official diplomatic note to the U.S. government, that exile planes violating Cuban air space will be shot down.
January 16. Jose Casin, a commentator on Radio Martí, dares the Cuban military to shoot down the planes, adding that they will not be able to respond in time to stop the fly-overs.
February 24. Cuban MiGs shoot down two airplanes (over international waters) belonging to the anti-Castro organization "Brothers To The Rescue," resulting in the death of four exiles. Basulto, in the third plane, is able to escape.
March 12. President Clinton signs the Cuban Liberty and Democratic Solidarity (Libertad) Act (also known as the Helms-Burton Act) which imposes penalties on foreign companies doing business in Cuba, permits U.S. citizens to sue foreign investors who make use of American-owned property seized by the Cuban government, and denies entry into the U.S. to such foreign investors. (He sites the planes shot down as a deciding factor in his approval of this measure.)
April. In Havana, a new Computer Technology Video Library opens, containing over two-thousand videos, many of which offer instructions on using the Internet.
November 12. By a vote of 137 to 3, the United Nations General Assembly recommends, for the fifth consecutive year, that the U.S. end the embargo against Cuba.
November 19. Pope John Paul II receives Castro at the Vatican. The Pope accepts an invitation to visit Cuba.

April. A terrorist explosion in the discotheque of Havana’s most fashionable hotel, the Melia Cohiba, begins a series of similar attacks on hotels, restaurants and night spots of Havana and Varadero.
June 29. According to a poll taken by the Miami Herald, a majority of Cuban Americans under the age of 45 support "establishing a national dialogue with Cuba, while their elders opposed it.
August 13. A paid advertisement in the Miami newspaper El Nuevo Herald by the CANF supports the bombings, and states that "Cuban people, like all peoples fighting for their freedom, have the right to choose whatever instruments are within reach to obtain freedom." CANF president Francisco Hernandez explains that "we don't consider these actions terrorism because people fighting for liberty cannot be limited by a system that is itself terrrorist."
September. Cuban authorities arrest a 25-year-old Salvadoran, Raúl Ernesto Cruz León, for carrying out a half-dozen of the hotel attacks.
October 27. U.S. Coast Guard gets a call for help from the 46-foot yacht La Esperana (owned by Jose Antonio Llama, a member of the CANF board of directors) which is in international waters off Puerto Rico. A search of the boat uncovers two .50-caliber sniper rifles (one of which is registered to CANF president Francisco J. Hernández) 70 rounds of ammunition and an array of military-type equipment. One of the men, Angel Manuel Alfonso, 58, says that he alone smuggled the weapons because he "planned to kill Castro." The FBI begins an investigation. [Seven exiles are indicted on August 24 1998, and after the trial is moved to Miami, all are found Not Guilty.]
November 5. For the sixth straight year, the U.N. General Assembly passes a resolution to end the Cuban embargo. The vote is 143 to 3.
November 6. In Havana, Walter Van der Veer, an American member of exile group "Comandos L," goes on trial for "trying to overthrow the Cuban government." He is given a sentence of 15 years in prison.
November 18. A U.S. defense intelligence report concludes that "Cuba does not pose a significant military threat to the U.S. or to other countries in the region."
November. Jorge Mas Canosa, the most influential anti-Castro activist and founder of the CANF, dies in Miami.

February. Pope John Paul II visits Cuba.
March. The Pentagon concludes that Cuba poses no significant threat to U.S. national security, and senior defense officials urge increased contact with their counterparts on the island.
May – June. European countries call for an end to the embargo. Some warn that Title III of the Helms-Burton Act contradicts international law and may cause problems if not revoked.
July 12. The New York Times runs an article in which Luis Posada Carriles admits to over a decade of terrorist activities and assassination attempts on Castro wilfully funded by leaders of the Cuban-American National Foundation (CANF). Posada admits that Raúl Ernesto Cruz León, arrested in September of ’97, was one of his operatives. He boasts that there are additional anti-Castro operatives still on the island, and warns of a major surprise soon.
July 29 – Aug. 3. Castro visits the Caribbean: Jamaica, Barbados and Grenada.
August 24. Seven Cuban exiles are indicted in Puerto Rico on charges of plotting to assassinate Fidel Castro. Among the defendants is Jose Antoio Llama, 67, who serves as director at the Cuban American National Foundation.
October 13. In the U.S., senator John W. Warner and 23 other senators recommend establishing a National Bipartisan Commision to review U.S.-Cuba policy.
October 16. The UN General Assembly adopts a resolution against the U.S. embargo on Cuba. The vote is 157 to end the embargo and 2 (U.S. & Israel) to keep it.

January 1. The Revolution celebrates 40 years.
January 5. U.S. President Bill Clinton declines the recommendation of 10/13/98 to establish a National Bipartisan Commission to review U.S.-Cuba policy. [Minnesota Repblican Senator Rod Grams: "By rejecting this Commission, the President has rejected common sense; after years of an ineffective embargo, it is time to independently revise our relation with Cuba." Senator Warner (Virginia Republican): "The current policy treats Cuba more cruelly than Iraq and North Korea, where US embargoes are less restrictive." Senator Dodd: "I am disappointed that nothing was done to deal with the critical impediments to the sales of medicines to Cuba."]
February 18. Six members of the U.S. Congressional Black Caucus visit Cuba to evaluate the U.S.-imposed embargo. Among the visitors: Maxine Waters and Barbara Lee of California, Sheila Jackson-Lee of Texas, Julia Carson of Indiana and others.
February 22. Cuba's State Prosecutor asks for the death penalty for Raúl Ernesto Cruz León, the Salvadoran terrorist charged with bomb attacks on the island in 1997.
February 22. The First Annual "Festival del Habano," (a showcase for cigar enthusiasts world wide) begins. The festival ends on February 26.
February 23. The coalition of Americans for Humanitarian Trade With Cuba join the United States Association of Former Members of Congress to call on the Clinton administration to end the embargo on food and medicines to Cuba. "The U.S. embargo on Cuba is the single most restrictive policy of its kind. Even Iraq is able to buy food and medicine from U.S. sources," says George Fernandez, Executive Director at AHTC. "As a Cuban American, I speak for the vast majority of us who do not think the U.S. should be in the business of denying basic sustenance to families and children in Cuba."
October. Illinois governor George Ryan heads a delegation to Cuba that includes many businessmen-the first by a U.S. governor since before the Bay of Pigs invasion in 1961.
November 9. A resolution is passed in the UN General Assembly on the need to end the U.S. embargo against Cuba. The vote is 155 in favor and 2 against (U.S. and Israel). This is the 8th time in as many years that the resolution is passed.
November 25. Elián Gonzalez is rescued at sea two or three days after boat capsizes, killing his mother and 10 others.

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