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11868 - THE ARMY AND SPANISH IMMIGRATION TO CUBA

Perhaps the principal source of Spanish immigration to the island of Cuba during the eighteenth century was the Spanish army. Spain aspired to man is permanent garrison with peninsular subjects or Canary Islanders. Many of the soldiers who came deserted, while other chose to remain after their term of duty had been completed. Further, Madrid regularly reinforced Havana with Spanish troops, at times with as many as two regiments. The process of desertion from these units added to the local population but so too did the practice of permitting those who wished to remain to do so. Building up the “blanco” population became a concern when the expansion of plantation agriculture led to the rapid increase in the number of slaves. All such efforts were doomed to failure as the sugar revolution powered a profound transformation of Cuban society.

Author: Kuethe, Allan (Texas Tech University, Ud States of Am / USA)

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