“A Signal”

Santiago de Cuba

In 1553, Santiago was first invaded and plundered by the French. They were followed by the British, led by Sir Christopher Myngs, a British officer in the Royal Navy, who served under the leadership of Oliver Cromwell, an infamous buccaneer. Cromwell promoted Myngs to the rank of Admiral and ordered him to the Caribbean in 1656, where he was responsible for looting Spanish settlements and conquering the island of Jamaica from the Spanish. During his career Myngs was also responsible for spawning the privateering career of Henry Morgan.

The British considered Myngs an Admiral, but to the Spanish he was a pirate when he broke through the strong Spanish defenses of Santiago de Cuba to plunder and sack the city. Santiago had lost its status as the capital of Cuba when the seat of power was moved to Havana in 1589, but many people to this day, feel it is still the capital city when it comes to culture. Of course, anyone from La Habana would strongly disagree with this! Carnival is the predominant pageant in the city because it relates to the Afro-Cuban beliefs rather than Christianity. It also occurs in July instead of February. The large number of Afro-Cubans in Santiago were responsible for bringing in much of the African culture found in eastern Cuba. Many of these people practice Santería, a syncretic religion that had emerged from different West African beliefs and was brought to Cuba from Haiti.

“The Exciting Story of Cuba” by Captain Hank Bracker; available from Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble.com, BooksAMillion.com and Independent Book Vendors. Read, Like & Share Captain Hank Bracker’s blogs found on Facebook, Goodreads, Twitter and his Webpage.