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Last week, Heather shared photos from her visit to Bath Abbey, Sim corrected the American pronunciation of Wimbledon, and Becky reviewed two books — The Silmarillion by J.R.R. Tolkien and The Semi-Detached House by Emily Eden.
We’re going to Cuba in October! I know very little about the history of Cuba, so I was surprised that there was a significant, but short, time when the British were the colonial force on the island.
Christopher Columbus landed in Cuba in 1492, during his first visit to the Western Hemisphere. For most of the next four centuries, Cuba was a Spanish colony. For a few months, though, the British took charge — from the summer of 1762 until the Treaty of Paris early in the following year.
During the Seven Years’ War between European powers in the 1750s and 1760s, Spain sided with France against the British. A British fleet, under command of the admiral Lord Albemarle, conquered and occupied Havana and the western portion of Cuba. The British colonization was brief, but significant. Previously, Cuba had been restricted to trading only with Spain. The British opened up trade to their American colonies, transforming Cuban society with a surge of imports including food and horses. The British also intensified the trade of enslaved Africans as they developed the sugar plantations on the island.
The Seven Years’ War ended with the Treaty of Paris, signed on the 10th of February in 1763. The British returned Cuba to the Spanish in exchange for Florida.
Did you know that the British were in Cuba?