For Immediate Release
Contact: Jerry A. Sierra
History of Cuba Now Online
May 5, 1998 | 407 words
"Its the most beautiful land that human eyes have ever seen," wrote Christopher Columbus as he sailed into Cuba on October 29, 1492. The palm-studded grassland he discovered went on to endure the enslavement and destruction of most of its indigenous population and four-hundred years of ruthless Spanish rule.
"The Timetable History of Cuba," (THC) allows you to explore, online, five-hundred years of Cuban history. [http://historyofcuba.com] You can browse the timeline in linear fashion, beginning just before Spanish arrival and continuing all the way to the present, or you can follow the many detours to articles, sidebars, photos, maps and illustrations that bring this history to life.
Among the articles included is an in-depth look at the Bay of Pigs invasion, as well as a biography of poet/revolutionary icon José Martí, who gave his life for Cuban independence in 1895. You can also read about "Fulgencio Batista," the ruthless dictator overthrown by Fidel Castro in the Cuban Revolution of 1959.
Additional articles include "The Legend of Hatuey," the brave king from Hispaniola (now the Dominican Republic) who came to warn Cuba's Taínos about Spanish cruelty, and a brief article about Cuba's war of independence, which became the controversial "Spanish-Cuban-American War."
"THC" was compiled by Jerry A. Sierra, who authored many of the articles and chose the excerpts from existing books. Sierra was born in Cuba, and immigrated to the U.S. in 1969 with his family. It was the lack of accurate information in history books and the media that inspired him to undertake this ambitious endeavor. "I was shocked," he says, "that in the age of information it would be so difficult to find books and articles that accurately depict Cuban history."
The timetable is divided into five major categories: Early History, Stuggle For Independence, Before the Revolution, After the Revolution, and The Eighties & Beyond. You can easily jump from one time period to another.
The bulk of the timetable itself took years to compile and verify, becoming an obsession for Sierra. He began by familiarizing himself with the few books on Cuba available through the many public libraries. The internet provided another source of information, but turned out to be a major disappointment. "There's more politics than information when it comes to Cuba," he says. Friends and used-book stores were also instrumental, as were resources available through the Library of Congress and various universities.
THC is a work in progress, updated several times a week.