Found at sea: Jose Marti's 11-day Odyssey and Cuba's war of independence.
Over half a century ago, the Latin-American historian Manuel Pedro Gonzalez identified Jose Marti as a unique link between the northern and southern parts of the Western Hemisphere, stating that he made "the spiritual and intellectual values of the United States known throughout the Hispanic World." (1) Yet, Gonzalez also pondered an all-too evident historical enigma, "Jose Marti is practically unknown to the North American people." (2) Today, this might be less the case, but it remains peculiar that much of the life of Jose Marti, a man of rare talent and great fame in his day, awaits analysis more than a century after his death. Reflecting on this in 1998, Hugh Thomas wrote that "[t]here is unfortunately as yet no first-class biography of Jose Marti." (3) This remains true to date.
As testimony to the stature of the man, however, Marti's deeds have loomed increasingly larger across the century to elevate his memory into legend in popular memory in Hispanic America. Charles Chapman predicted this about Jose Marti when he wrote in 1927:
Thus perished the acknowledged Father of Cuban Independence. It seemed at the time like an irreparable loss, but it may well have been a fortunate, if lamentable, accident, fortunate, because it gave the revolution the stimulant of a hero and a martyr, fortunate possibly for the later republic and for Marti's own fame, since it prevented him from risking his reputation in the whirlpool of partisan politics, leaving him as perhaps the one figure of the Independence era, concerning whom all Cubans can unite in expressions of love and praise. Marti's real task that of organizing and inspiring the revolution was already accomplished. (4)
As a poet and politician, Jose Marti contributed greatly to the corpus of Latin American literature and political thinking during his short lifetime. Today's literati venerate Marti's works, and folk musicians have adapted his poetry to lyrics. (5) His stern stance against U.S. expansionism continues to shape political policy today throughout the Caribbean, Central, and South America. Cubans revere Marti as the Apostle of Independence. (6) Havana's international airport bears his name. Jose Marti died in combat at the age of 42 during the sole occasion he was in battle. He perished in the Cuban Revolution of 1895, an uprising aimed at freeing Cuba from Spain that has been attributed to Marti's single-handedly organizing it. Marti's "passage to war," a fatidic phrase of Marti's, derived from an 1889 letter written to rebut a New York Evening Post portrayal of Cuban men as effeminate and incapable of fighting a winning war against Spain in an earlier revolution, eerily foretells of this 1895 odyssey. Even today, this statement resounds as a sign-post piece for Cuban political sovereignty and cultural independence. (7)
Geographically speaking, Marti's passage to war, where he embarked and where he landed, should have been a trip of only negligible consequence and time. (8) But its significance was vast. This crucial eleven-day voyage appears intriguingly underdeveloped in the literature on him. Historians routinely cite Marti's departure from Montecristi, Dominican Republic, on 1 April 1895, and his eventual arrival in Cuba on 11 April as a matter of fact. But armed with a map and knowledge of sailing in the region, the question arises why the journey took so long. From either one of the two Caribbean islands, Inagua and Hispaniola, from which Marti embarked not once, but twice, Cuba was a mere forty-six miles. Historians recount brief descriptions and traces of facts about his crossing, all agreeing that on a stormy night he and five other insurgents were set at sea from a ship and invaded Cuba in a rowboat. But what actually happened during these eleven days?
My investigation in reconstructing this missing chapter of Marti's life rests on primary sources such as the investigation of diaries, ship's logs, newspaper stories, United States records of Documented Vessels, and Lloyd's Register of Ships. Through comparative analysis, my essay challenges and seeks to clarify existing secondary sources. I suggest that Marti's untold story is multifaceted. It involves compatriots, Spanish rule and US confiscation of insurgents' weapons, and yacht charters, with vessels starting and stopping. It is an exciting and bizarre story as well as the origin of a legend. My essay suggests that an interesting and puzzling journey involving Jose Marti should have received more than scant attention from scholars of the Cuban Revolution. (9)
Indeed, Marti's passage to war also included another Cuban Revolutionary of significant historical stature: General Maximo Gomez (1836-1905). Gomez first gained renown for his leadership in the Ten Years War (1868-1878), an earlier attempt aimed at freeing Cuba from Spain. Beyond that, Gomez was vital to the Cuban Revolution of 1895. His significance is evident from his portrait on Cuba's ten-peso bill. In order to fathom the importance of Marti's and Gomez's seaborne journey, I will render its unfolding against the background of Marti's life.
Marti and Gomez kept diaries, and in tracing their journey they are a fine guide. (10) Their diaries reveal contrasts between the men themselves: one who preached revolution and the other who practiced it. Marti's 1 April entry reads like an advertisement for a Caribbean cruise. (11) Not so Maximo Gomez's. (12) Gomez's and Marti's diaries reflect more than differing views of the same journey.
When they set out from Montecristi, Dominican Republic, on 1 April 1895, Jose Marti and Maximo Gomez believed they were going to sail to the Cuban shoreline. They intended to lead the Cuban rebellion that had boken out on 24 February. Four other insurgents accompanied them: Francisco Borrero, Angel Guerra, Cesar Salas, and Marcos del Rosario. None of the six were sailors. Marti and Gomez chartered the sailboat the Brothers, outfitted with captain and crew, in Gomez's wife's name. The simplest option for an invasion would have been to trek 70 miles southwest across Haiti and meet the yacht, or to sail west along Haiti's shoreline and cross the approximately 45 miles of open water to Cuba. Instead, they charted a roundabout northerly course through the Bahamas, which ultimately became a course that would have discouraged even the most dogged of Spanish trackers. Despite the obstacles leading up to their departure, and those yet to come, they finally reached Cuba on 12 April 1895, not aboard the Brothers, but in a rowboat.
At the outset after departing from Montecristi, the group sailed 137 miles northwest to Inagua, an island in the Bahamas about 45 miles northeast of the eastern tip of Cuba. The insurgents likely assumed the Spaniards would least suspect an invasion from the British Bahamas across the Bahama Channel. The easiest route led from independent Haiti across the Windward Passage. Haiti, the Spanish knew, was hostile to them, and attempts to land on Cuba from there were anticipated. (13) Meanwhile, the Dominicans sympathized with the Cuban struggle as a former Spanish colony. (14) Marti did not have to worry about any difficulty placed in his path by them.
As soon as Marti, Gomez, and their four companions sailed into the Bahamian harbor at Inagua, the captain and crew of the Brothers got off the vessel and refused to sail further, stranding the revolutionaries. For days Marti failed to hire a new captain and crew. Eventually, Marti negotiated a high-priced ride for the group aboard a fruit ship, the Nordstrand, which would not, however, land them on Cuba. Instead of bending 46 miles south to skirt the Cuban coastline so Marti's party could get off, meanwhile, the Nordstrand steamed 115 miles straight to Cape Haitian, Haiti. The rebels were once again on the island of Hispaniola, 36 miles from where they began. There they waited undercover for four more days.
They embarked once again aboard the Nordstrand on 10 April. But the Nordstrand did a U-turn straight back to Inagua. With this leg of the journey becoming all too familiar, the rebels must have had an epiphany, since Marti now bought a rowboat for 100 pesos. In the late afternoon on 11 April the Nordstrand steamed from Inagua for Jamaica. The revolutionaries, equipped with their rowboat, were on board. The Nordstrand's captain hove to several miles from Cuba's eastern-most shoreline. The Nordstrand's crew lowered the six insurgents and their rowboat into a simmering sea that churned with a dark, looming storm. Their lack of maritime skill showed immediately. Lost were the rebels' visibility, direction, rudder, and tempers. It is understandable why historians who pause momentarily over this journey suggest that Marti's safe passage was providential. (15) Nonetheless, after eleven days, and after the insurgents logged nearly four times the miles from where they began on 1 April and the shoreline where they scuttled in the wee hours of 12 April, they stood on Cuba. (16)
At 42, Marti, a poet and well-known diplomat, headed off to war for the first time in his life. (17) In contrast, General Gomez was a crusty, sixty-year-old, war-hardened pragmatist who had survived decades of brutal and bloody combat. (18) Always dressed in a black business suit with a tie and a white starched shirt, Marti's soldiering consisted of political organizing, fund raising, writing and political philosophizing in exile, entirely and safely beyond the reach of gory warfare. The consummate optimist, Marti's diary articulated no doubts concerning the success of the Cuban Revolution that broke out in 1895 and its goal of abolishing Spanish rule in Cuba. This may explain why Marti fell in battle within five weeks after landing, while Gomez lived to seventy years old and died of natural causes in 1905.
Ironically, Gomez was a Dominican citizen, while Marti's father and mother were Spaniards. (19) Marti's father was stationed on Cuba as a Spanish military officer. (20) Were it not for that, Jose Julian Marti y Perez would have been born in Spain instead of Havana on 28 January 1853. Marti lived part of his childhood in Spain after his parents returned there. Even if he was judged a revolutionary sympathizer at the outbreak of the Ten Years War, as a Spaniard the young Marti obtained college degrees in law and philosophy, rather than remaining in a prison in Cuba. (21) Leaving Spain in 1874, Marti made his home in a host of countries: He lived in Guatemala for a year, Mexico for four years, and the United States for fifteen years. Except for a short two years after the Ten Years War's end, Marti never again set foot on Cuban soil until he, Gomez, and the other four insurgents rowed their way to the Cuban shoreline early on the morning of 12 April 1895. Marti wrote to a friend in 1879, "If Cuba were not so unfortunate, I would love Mexico more than Cuba." (22)
Marti's commitment to an independent Cuba rested on his belief that the United States was positioning itself to acquire the island from Spain, a goal the American government had pursued since President Thomas Jefferson's administration. (23) Marti intoned that Cuba was at risk of forever continuing its economic, cultural, and political subjugation under another master if Cuba delayed in establishing its independence. He understood how Spain's creaky empire offered an opportunity for the United States to indulge in its penchant for imperial expansion, and feared its history of slavery and its present of labor exploitation. (24) Marti also believed in a domino effect: If the United States acquired Cuba, the rest of Latin America might follow.
Marti and Gomez were not always on friendly terms. On the first day they met in New York on 18 October 1885, respect for each other dissolved quickly. Neither spoke to the other for almost seven years. (25) Their rift occurred over leadership. The substance of their meeting concerned the lessons to be learned from the Ten Years War, a war in which Gomez had fought. Marti aimed to establish civilian leadership to direct an upcoming war that was only in the planning stages at their meeting. Gomez held out for military control to guide a future insurgence. Two days after they met, Marti declined to collaborate further with Gomez in a lengthy eloquent letter to Gomez, overflowing with symbolism and metaphor. "What are we, General," he asked rhetorically, "the brave and fortunate military leaders who, with whip in hand and spurs on the heels of their boots, are preparing to lead a people into war, only to lord it over them in the aftermath?" (26)
Insulted, surely, but not outdone, Gomez ignored Marti's letter and instead dipped his pen in vitriol. "Marti," he said, "cannot operate in any sphere without claims to dominate," calling himself "this old soldier," while dismissing Marti as one of the "orators and poets." (27) Gomez sought "powder and bullets and men to go with me to the battlefields of my country to kill its tyrants." (28) Marti knew, however, that Gomez was a popular warrior, and the falling out always seemed a temporary rift. Gomez embodied hardiness and honesty, and Marti capitalized on that perception. The historian Neal Ronning concludes that Marti throughout the growth period leading into the 1895 Cuban Revolution tempered his philosophical jingoism toward mending fences with the old warrior and putting thoughts and words into Gomez's brain and mouth. At the same time, Gomez, sale and comfortable at his hacienda in Montecristi, remained mute on the subject of Marti. (29) They eventually came to terms on the notion that they needed each other. Beginning in 1892, Marti began to consolidate Cuban support behind him and collect a war chest that amazed Gomez with its size.
Marti traveled alone on 11 September 1892 to Montecristi to ask Gomez to assume command of the Cuban Revolutionary Party, a position Gomez accepted. Gomez went so far as to accept the role of military chief under civilian direction, but only until the war began. Then he intended for the leadership and command to shift to him. Marti knew better than to try for too much too early. Below the surface lingered past feelings of distrust. Gomez wrote of the occasion that he accepted Marti's proposal "because he came in the name of Cuba." (30)
Yet, Marti still had another shoe to drop. Two-and-one-half years later, on 25 March 1895 (a mere six days before they sailed on the Brothers for Cuba from Gomez's hacienda in Montecristi) Marti, purportedly with Gomez's input, drafted a Cuban Revolutionary benchmark document, the "Manifesto of Montecristi." (31) Gomez and Marti both signed and wrote it. Gomez's lack of influence on the text is evident from its peculiar verbosity. The first sentence alone containing 157 words is a far cry from Gomez's pithy writing style, normally crafted to allow his words to be easily and quickly understood on the first read. The Manifesto proposed a significantly different kind of war than the one that ended in 1878. The document outlined the war's aims and conduct: civilized warfare (specifically, too, sparing pro-Spanish civilians), enlistment of the African-Cuban population (while rejecting Spanish-fueled racism), respect for private property, and the introduction of substantial economic reform. (32)
The Manifesto also projected an image of Cuban political and social life after the war but neglected to say precisely how to achieve this. The reality of war made Gomez give in to his more ruthless side; orders he issued on 6 November 1895, barely five months after Marti's death, read:
Article 1. AII plantations shall be totally destroyed, their cane and outbuildings burned and railroad connections destroyed.
Article 2. All laborers who shall aid the sugar factories ... shall be considered traitors to their country.
Article 3. All who are caught in the act, of whose violation of Article 2 shall be proven, shall be shot. (33)
Throughout the 1880s, the population of displaced Cubans within the United States had grown to an estimated 80,000. (34) They predominantly chose to live within Cuban emigre colonies. Such communities existed in Key West, New York, Tampa, Jacksonville, Philadelphia, Boston, Ocala, and New Orleans; outside of the US, meanwhile, Cuban emigre colonies could be found in Haiti, the Dominican Republic, and Jamaica, as well as Central America, South America, and even Europe. (35)
Even if he barely lived long enough to witness its early unfolding, the second war for Cuban independence coalesced around Marti. Contemporary reports reflect he was a master orator and a literary geyser. (36) He worked as a teacher in Harlem and as a journalist for the New York Sun to pay bills. Imbued in almost everything he wrote, of spoke, were warnings to fellow Latin Americans of their late if the US absorbed Cuba. In 1892, Marti, living in New York, founded, edited, and became the principal journalist for the revolutionary Cuban emigre newspaper, Patria. (37) It became the hub and voice for circulating the know-how and philosophy of a revolution in the offing. It served to spread news within emigre communities and their quite diverse, yet all-important, patriotic clubs. Patria stimulated the growth of new clubs and the consolidation of existing ones.
These clubs proved ideally structured for unifying a democratic base among the exiles. And Patria became the medium to express prevalent thought among Cubans. Patria, by applauding successes of specific clubs in raising funds for the upcoming revolution, provided a splendid forum to report the phenomenally swift accumulation of a revolutionary war chest. Patria's circulation was widespread, indicative of the great popularity of the cause of Cuban independence among the expatriates. The journal survived on donations and virtually without subscriptions. Patria was widely read in households, churches, as well as aloud from the lectern during the workdays in the cigar factories, honoring a long-standing Cuban tradition. (38) Patria galvanized revolutionary-minded Cubans around an organized structure. (39) Marti succeeded where others had failed. He unified myriad people and distinct organizations under a single democratic banner known as the "Cuban Revolutionary Party." (40) Marti became the quasi-democratically elected "Civilian Delegate" (as he called himself) for the Cuban Revolutionary Party, the party he created. (41) Patria was its voice. An independent Cuba was its aim.
Marti drew into the structure of the Cuban Revolutionary Party the veterans of the Ten Years War. Like Gomez, these were men who might be inclined to think of a military dictatorship as the best form of government for post-colonial Cuba, but because they were leaders with valuable experience in combat, they commanded instant respect from subordinates and colleagues. Before 1895, these men were spread around the Caribbean. Some lived quite comfortably, but they still desired an independent Cuba. They included the "Bronze Titan" Antonio Maceo in Costa Rica, and General Maximo Gomez in the Dominican Republic. (42)
Marti's steadfast desire for an independent Cuba was reinforced by consular duties he undertook for Argentina, Uruguay, and Paraguay. (43) He became convinced that all of Spain's former colonies needed to join in a unified confederate state, which was to include Cuba and Puerto Rico. Marti did not so much abhor Spain as took pride in Latin-American culture's deep roots. He did, however, deplore Spain's lengthy history of exploitation of Cuba, Cubans, and slaves. Marti grouped the Latin-American countries together as "Mother America" or "Our America," referring to the United States as the "Other America." (44)
Conflicting appraisals surround Marti's death. Among the various accounts, the most plausible exists in Charles Chapman's A History of the Cuban Republic, published in 1927. (45) Chapman recounted simply and logically why Marti joined, or gained permission to join, Gomez's attempt to land. More than anything, the exiled revolutionary leader wanted to claim that he had personally participated in the revolution on the island.
Scholarly accounts of Marti and Gomez's arrival to Cuba have started from the basic facts in Marti's diary. (46) For flamboyance and historical richness, Marti's rendition of the insurgents' landing became the most readily acceptable and colorfully quotable rendition in Spanish and English (47):
The [crew of the Nordstrand] lowered the boat. It was raining hard as we pushed off. We set the wrong course. There were conflicting and confused opinions in boat. There occurred another down pour. The rudder [was] lost. But we got on course. I took the forward oar. Salas rowed steadily. Paquito Barrero and the General [Gomez] helped in the stern. We strapped on our revolvers. We steered toward a clearing. The moon came up red behind a cloud. We landed on a rocky beach, La Playita. I was the last to leave the boat, bailing out water. I jumped ashore with great joy. (48)
Remarkably, Gomez's version of their arrival has been almost completely ignored. He recorded a slightly different story about the night they landed, implying that he, not Marti, was the captain of the rowboat:
Not a star shown in the sky. The squall made fast. The steamer [Nordstrand] stopped for a moment and quickly off-loaded our rowboat, arms, and equipment, and we six fell within; anyone would say that we were six crazy people. The ship steamed off and we were abandoned, surrounded in enormous terror. None of us were sailors, and yet, we made use of the oars. Marti and Cesar were at the bow and rowed very badly, yet furiously; the others were in the center, I held the rudder, which, no sooner than I understood it and aimed us on course, [broke away] and was lost. The darkness was deep, and the showers got worse. We lost our course and could not see the shore well. We saw two men on shore and imagined they were Spanish guards; I reset our course, and despite all our misery and extraordinary fatigue, we managed to make way. Providence did not desert us; the showers calmed, the night cleared and the moon began to rise in the east. We began to row with more mastery. Borrero and I used an oar for a rudder, and by pushing directed the boat with very good results. [Our first choice] for disembarkation was not possible, there were jagged rocks that rose abruptly and the sea banged them with fury--we continued to row a little further. By good fortune we rounded a bend and found a cove, "The Playita." There we directed our boat, and luckily, to its beach. (49)
Preparing for the journey, Marti showed that he was not afraid of manipulation to reach his goal. On 29 January 1895, two days before he left New York to rendezvous with Gomez in Montecristi, he had already issued (and signed for Gomez) the order that would officially launch the revolution in Cuba on 24 February. Horatio Rubens, legal counsel for the Cuban Revolutionary Party and friend and admirer of Marti, recorded in his memoirs a conversation held just as Marti issued Gomez's order. Rubens' narrative helps significantly to understand Marti's mindset:
Marti [after initiating the order] would embark for [Montecristi], where he would meet General Gomez, and proceed to Cuba. I thought General Gomez might hesitate to go under certain transport conditions I foresaw might easily arise. Marti brushed that aside. "He will go; at any rate, I shall tell him, 'I am going, and I know you will go with me'." (50)
The transport issue aside, Rubens's recollection also indicates that initially Gomez strongly objected to including Marti in the invasion party. (51) Marti, however, changed Gomez's mind. A newspaper story that alleged that Marti might send others where he did not have the courage to go, according to Rubens, clinched the idea for Marti to sail with Gomez, who faced with Marti's overwhelming determination relented.
On the day of departure from Gomez's home and only a few days after Gomez signed the Manifesto, Marti wrote of his impending journey in a letter to Federico Henriquez, a prominent benefactor:
I am writing to you with deep emotion in the silence of a home [Gomez's] about to be abandoned this very day for the good of my country. The least I can do in gratitude for this virtue--since I am thus accepting my duty instead of shirking it--is to face death, whether it awaits us on land or sea, in the company of one [Gomez] who, as a result of my efforts and out of respect for his own, as well as for the passionate spirit common to our lands, is leaving his loving and happy home to set foot in our enemy-ridden country with a handful of brave men.... Wherever my first duty may lie, in Cuba of abroad, there I will be. It may even be possible or necessary, as up to now it would appear, for me to do both. I promoted the war; with it my responsibility begins, not ends. (52)
The few facts that trickled into print to shape the historical narrative of Marti's and Gomez's passage to war came from Horario Rubens' 1932 account. Until recently, the premise held that around midnight on 1 April 1895, Jose Marti, Maximo Gomez, and four others pushed off from the shore of Montecristi aboard the sailing ship Brothers, as recounted earlier. (53) But neither the exact hour nor the precise means are accurate. Rubens derived his facts from a story within a story involving the death of Antonio Maceo. On 7 December 1896, Maceo fell at El Cacahual. With him also perished Maximo Gomez's son, nineteen-year-old Francisco, who had attempted to shield Maceo with his body. In a letter in which he reported their son's death to his wife Bernada, Gomez depicts the night he and the five others left Montecristi:
Before I left for Cuba in 1895, the boy said, "I know that you are soon going to Cuba; what are you going to do with me?" I replied, "you stay here." The boy said, "duty compels me to go by your side. It is impossible that I do nothing but push off the vessel that is to carry you to sacrifice for the liberty of the country of my birth."... [He had been born in Cuba during the Ten Years' War.] It was necessary for Marti to interfere and convince the boy. On that dark night, at midnight [of 1 April 1895], none other than my five expeditionary companions could hear the kisses that I gave my sons Francisco and Maximito [who was 15] on the shores of Dominican waters; but the words that my son Francisco murmured in my ear, only God and I heard them. He said, "I shall die or be at your side." (54)
Thanks to a recent publication by a distant relative of Gomez's, Olga Lobetty Gomez de Morel, Jose Marti en Montecristi, new information has come to light. (55) Francisco indeed pushed off the boat that carried the six insurgents for Cuba. But it was a tender, and he pushed it away from a deserted and craggy Dominican beach located a few miles south of Montecristi, toward the anchored and waiting Brothers. The hour was around 3 AM on 1 April 1895. That night, the insurgents' preoccupation had been with their loved ones. In the afternoon of 31 March, Marti wrote to his sixteen-year-old son, who still lived in Cuba with his mother, Marti's estranged wife Carmen Zayas Bazan:
Tonight I leave for Cuba: I leave without you, when you should be by my side. As I leave, I think of you. If I disappear on the way, you will receive with this letter the watch chain that your father used in life. Good-bye. Be fair. Jose Marti. (56)
Marti left behind one impassioned devotee when he departed Gomez's house that night: Gomez's daughter, Clemency. He recorded to have taken sundry strolls with her during his six weeks in Montecristi. On the day he left, she drew from her long dark hair a blue ribbon. She told him to take it as a remembrance for "all the fire of so many thoughts, and one of the colors of our flag"; he "smiled deeply and handled it like something sacred" and said he would keep the token "next to the weakest part in his chest." (57)
Before they left Gomez's house late that night on March 31, Gomez's wife, two sisters, Regina and Maria de Jesus, and his daughter, Clemency, packed provisions consisting of dried meat, fruit, and coffee for two days. (58) The assumption was that this was ample, because sailing from anywhere along the shoreline of Montecristi for Cuba, or even by way of Inagua, required less than two days. (59)
The insurgents' departure relied on precise timing. Through midnight on 31 March the tide flowed in at Montecristi. On that tide and under the cover of darkness, Captain Bastian of the Brothers slipped in unobserved with his ship. Once among the barrier islands, beyond the range of anyone's sight and, more crucially, where there was no threat of grounding on the receding tide, he anchored. Then he sent a rowboat to fetch the insurgents at a prearranged location. (60) Safely on board the yacht, they would sail away on the ebb tide. Relief for captain, crew, and insurgents depended on carefully clearing the shoals around the barrier islands of Montecristi. Doing so situated sailors into the prevailing westerly current and trade winds along the northern coastline of Hispaniola, pushing boats, ships, and flotsam between the narrows of Cuba and the Bahamas.
The insurgents' early-morning get-away was anything but clean. Their plan had begun to unravel the previous evening. Only five of the six insurgents left Gomez's house around midnight on 31 March. They waited for Cesar Salas, the party's treasurer, for as long as possible, since he carried the money. (61) The group took a southwesterly route from Gomez's house, heading toward the direction of the nearby Haitian border. They turned down a road just beyond the railroad tracks that ran straight to the Montecristi harbor. Commercial enterprises, customs officials, and Spanish spies dotted that harbor. These spies had kept an eye on Marti and Gomez's whereabouts for some time. There was nothing special about these undercover agents, recruited from among those who commonly poked around docks to make a quick buck. Gomez credited them with higher status than they deserved in calling them spies. In reality they were just paid informants, if they were lucky enough to have anything to report to the Spanish vice-consular official stationed in Montecristi. Certainly, had the insurgents attempted their departure at the docks, especially during the night, an eager swarm of thirsty informants existed to report the activities.
Despite their precautions the party was detected. Just off of the road on the way to their rendezvous they overtook a "Haitian and disarmed him and bound him." (62) Gomez was impatient to get to the waiting tender, which left them no choice but to leave without their prisoner. He reflected "an evil humor," because Salas with all of the "disposable cash" had gone missing. (63)
Through a process of elimination, Morel deduced from the description in Marti's diary that the embarkation point was "The Beach of the Farm." (64) It was the only coastline point flat enough for a tender to rendezvous with someone and matched the time allotted for the party's horse and foot journey. It was, as Marti related, a stretch brimming at high tide with eerie green florescence, the pungent aroma of aquatic salt marsh, and knee- and chest-high verdure with thistles and thorns. (65) In the moonlight they saw that the tender still waited. Not far away they heard a dog barking. Then they heard coming toward them sounds of a desperate rustling in the thick vegetation. It was Cesar Salas who emerged from the thickets. (66) Gomez, a man of few words, cogently tallied in his diary aboard the Brothers on 1 April:
After enormous expenses, defeats and obstacles--two months of suffering and torture--we six in the early morning have embarked. The place of our embarkation and my companions I will say later. We have thrown ourselves into the arms of an uncertain future and destiny. But we do so in compliance with our word. We are responding to Cubans who are already in arms, and I trust in Providence to reward us with success. (67)
Alternatively, Marti, in his diary on 1 April, depicts experiencing a welter of sensory perceptions. On its own, Marti's version of the embarkation at Montecristi has perplexing spots. He declines to mention sailboats, rowboats, insurgent members, their location and motivation, or their destination. But his utterances do remarkable justice to the surf and flora. Another odd fact Marti included is his picturesque reference to the Haitian they caught: "Among the sea and plants and from under the depth of heaven emerged a black Haitian. The man ascended to his full beauty in the silence of nature." (68) Nothing else about their captive was said except that Maximito, "with revolver in hand," took him in a skiff to a port near an inlet. (69)
Marti and Gomez wholly expected the sailing schooner Brothers to carry them and their comrades directly to Cuba. The Brothers, Captain Bastian, and Bastian's handpicked crew was neither their first choice nor their first expenditure at chartering a yacht to depart Montecristi. On 1 April, Marti posted a letter describing the unusual circumstances of this arrangement to Gonzalo de Quesada and Benjamin Guerra in New York, the Cuban Revolutionary Party Secretary and Treasurer, respectively. (70) Marti revealed how, before he fled New York at the end of January, he had failed to charter a boat of find a willing captain to transport the Montecristi contingent to Cuba. In Montecristi, he engaged John Poloney, yacht broker and captain, "in view of previous service for contraband trade" with Dominican rebels. (71) From Poloney, Marti chartered the schooner Marijohn, in Gomez's wife's name and paid Poloney a captain's fee to sail them to Cuba. (72) For reasons related to "courage," Poloney and his crew reneged. (73) Poloney recommended in his stead Captain Bastian. Bastian, however, refused to sail the Marijohn. Instead, he held out for the Brothers. So, for "$700 in gold," Marti chartered the Brothers, once again from Poloney. (74) Marti, unable to get a refund for the Marijohn or the captain's fee from Poloney, assured Quesada and Guerra of Poloney's service in the future. Hence Marti and Gomez set course for Cuba.
According to Lloyd's Register of Sailing Vessels, 1895-96, the Brothers was a wooden vessel and had at least two masts; her rig ran fore and aft. She had no auxiliary power and was only a single-deck vessel. (75) According to Oiga Lebetty Gomez de Morel, Captain Bastian skippered a crew of three men. AII told, then, ten men were on board. (76)
Under "limp winds," Gomez recorded in his diary on 2 April, the Brothers sailed slowly for "33 hours to arrive at Inagua la small Bahamian island forty-six miles north of Cuba] at 10 o'clock in the night on day three." (77) The schooner had sailed but 137 miles. (78) Its average speed had been a mere four miles per hour. (79)
Marti had idle minutes on his hands. Aboard the Brothers, Marti had a captive audience. He surely explained why they were there. (80) By 1 April 1895, Marti knew more than enough reasons to distrust a US that had during the nineteenth century engaged in several attempts to obtain Cuba. (81) The US and Spain maintained very cordial relations during these occasional negotiations over the island. Both 1868 and 1895, the incipient years of both Cuban independence wars, stood out as years of excellent relations between the two countries. The US perpetually denied belligerent rights to Cuban freedom fighters. To Cuban revolutionaries, the most lasting effect from the Ten Years War was to teach them that Spain had only come to the peace table to talk with the Cuban rebels (and ultimately sign a truce with them), because of the favoritism shown toward her by the United States. (82)
Marti's efforts to prevent Cuba's absorption into the US evolved in his works, from Our America (about Latin America) and Inside the Monster (about the United States) to Ismaelillo (an acclaimed book of poetry, renowned in Marti's own lifetime). (83) In the US, where he lived between 1880 and 1895, Marti personally felt the American condescending opinion toward Cuba and Latin American countries. (84) The distrust toward the US government of those sailing with Marti on the Brothers had increased two months before. On Christmas Day 1894, Marti decided to link the Cuban Revolutionary Party's war chest with the revolution that was about to break out in Cuba, and help launch a three-pronged, well-organized and financed assault. Washington got wind of the plan. On 12 January 1895, the United States government underlined its neutrality agreement with Spain by impounding three chartered ships, two at Fernandina, Florida, and the third en route to Fernandina but weathered-in at Savannah, Georgia. Customs officials confiscated crates of knapsacks, canteens, sabers, guns, and ammunition, two days before this Cuban Revolutionary Party's flotilla was to depart. (85) Marti had planned for the Amadis to go to Costa Rica and pick up Maceo, while the Baracoa was to sail to Montecristi and acquire Gomez and the third ship, the Lagonda, to steam to Key West and transport a Cuban contingent. (86) Moreover, Marti intended for important materiel to aid Party-sanctioned uprisings in each of Cuba's six provinces. By all appearances, Marti's revolution ended before it began. Throughout the United States, newspapers devoted front-page coverage to the Party's intentions. This debacle momentarily crushed Marti's spirit. (87) The Cuban Revolutionary Party was also now financially broke. Funds, converted into arms (mostly collected one penny at a time from poor, yet devoted Cuban emigre laborers), rested behind sealed doors.
To Jose Marti, an old-homespun adage applied, however: what counted most was not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog. Jose Marti's revolution, it turned out, had not ended; it had just begun. Eyebrows in admiration and sympathy raised across the United States, indeed, around the world, at the amount of stash off-loaded from those ships. Well-wishers and supporters from corners before unheard emerged for the Cuban cause. (88) Even the US government paused for a moment as rank-and-file Americans remembered the roots from which they sprang. Aboard the Brothers a few months later, Marti's companions must have agreed with him when he inveighed, "I have lived inside the monster and know its insides--and my weapon is only the slingshot of David." (89)
Marti regrouped after Fernandina. His determination proved invincible and inspirational. (90) In his memoirs, Horatio Rubens recorded: "... on January 29, 1895, Marti, and General 'Mayia' Rodriquez, representing the Commander-in-Chief, Maximo Gomez, and General Enrique Collazo, representing the Island organization, jointly signed the order to fight." (91)
The official date for the uprising was set for 24 February 1895, which, according to Rubens, "was selected partly because it coincided with the first carnival celebration." (92) And it allowed Marti sufficient time to reorganize Maceo and Gomez's entry into Cuba. On 31 January, Marti departed New York for Gomez's home in Montecristi, arriving on 7 February.
Gomez's diary indicates that the Brothers arrived in Inagua at 10PM on 2 April. The captain went ashore on the morning of 3 April to "fix the papers." (93) At 6 PM, he and the crew refused to sail any further; only the "cook" remained. (94) Horatio Rubens discounted the captain's integrity and blamed him for discouraging the crew and possible replacements. (95) But Rubens's account describes how the captain refunded his $400 fee to Marti. (96) The likely reason why the Brothers's crew bolted and Marti could not find any other ship to transport his team to Cuba has been ignored by historians.
When Marti and Gomez's yacht slipped quietly into Inagua, news of Antonio Maceo's murderous invasion of Cuba aboard a stolen sailboat from the Bahamas three days earlier had certainly reached Matthew Town. (97) The way Maceo invaded Cuba says everything about him. After US Custom officials impounded the Party's vessels in Fernandina in January, Marti hastily rearranged Antonio Maceo's invasion. Now, Maceo was to invade from Costa Rica aboard the American steamship Adirondack, which was supposed to land him and twenty-two others disguised as fare-paying field hands in Cuba by 31 March 1895. (98) But on 29 March, the captain "broke his promise" and "deposited" them 130 miles north of Cuba, in the Bahamas, on tiny, nondescript, Fortune Island. (99) Maceo and his band "prevailed" to charter a sailboat. (100) They sailed due south, through a storm and right past Inagua, where in only a few days Marti and Gomez's invasion would stall. Horatio Rubens veiled Maceo's ill-timed foray in his reminiscences:
A Spanish war vessel was in sight, so the Honor was driven ashore on a rocky coast; a wave rising under the stern impelled the craft well up on shore. While Maceo arranged matters with the captain, Corona [one of Maceo's men] was most unsuitably toying with a rifle. The weapon understandably, if unexpectedly, discharged and the bullet killed the captain. (101)
In Rubens's account neither Maceo nor Corona killed the captain; the bullet did. And responsibility for crashing the Honor rested with the Spanish, who were in the right place at the wrong time. On 4 April 1895, The New York Times reported Maceo's invasion far less delicately: "There had been trouble between the insurgents and the Captain [of the Honor] because he had refused to land them at the point designated by them. When the Captain refused to yield to their threats they killed him and threw his body overboard." (102) The New York Times further added that two of the Honor's crew were captured, but Maceo, Crombret, and twenty-one insurgents made off safely into the hills around Baracoa. (103)
Marti made three diary entries on 3 April 1895. First, oddly fascinated, he noted "rows of equally spaced flamencos, pink-chested with black under-wings flying in the heavens of the sky." (104) Second, as the day went on, he wrote a four-verse poem describing life's uncertainties, (105) His third entry implied that either the captain of one of the crew had revealed to the local authorities the nature of the insurgents' mission: "There is for a man nothing worse than to have no virtue." (106) But neither Gomez's nor Marti's diaries included reasons why the captain or crew disclosed the party's objective.
Gomez's entry on 3 April raises significant issues. In the morning, before Captain Bastian went ashore, he told the insurgents he intended to register the schooner for their "supposed" trip to Nassau. (107) When the port authorities arrived and cursorily inspected the vessel, Gomez noted the insurgents were able "to hide the greater number of objects which would unveil [their] mission." (108) However, he was very supicious of Captain Bastian, writing, "His distrust had dawned upon [them]," a suspicion strengthened later when he wrote that "Bastian returned to the boat around 6 p.m. and [had them] surrender the revolvers the customs' authorities said they saw." (109) At that point, "Bastian divulged two of the three crew were sorry and would not continue or return, leaving only the faithful cook." (110) Marti wrote that as Bastian apprised them about the crew, customs officials were "meticulously inspecting the vessel," but he gained the officials' confidence, preventing that "all of our arms would have been confiscated." (111)
Gomez ended his 3 April entry simply, stating that "[t]he situation was complicated." (112) Indeed, they were in a bind. The insurgents chartered the Brothers in Gomez's wife's name. The vessel was bare-boat chartered, however, meaning without captain and crew. (113) On 4 April, Gomez summarized the insurgents' predicament: "We are separated from this unfortunate man [Bastian], but we are isolated, with a useless boat, without sailors, and in a port whose inhabitants deny us shelter." (114)
When it became apparent in Matthew Town by 4 April that Bastian and two out of three crew refused to set sail, Marti went ashore to "solve the problem." (115) Bastian reportedly tagged along while Marti tried in vain to recruit sailors." Bastian "poisoned their will to accept the office he had declined." (116) Marti succeeded in befriending the Haitian Consul, M. Sarber, who confidently recommended they seek help from a "smuggler" called "Hopkins," the self-proclaimed "captain of the port." (117)
Hopkins emerged in Marti's narrative as a larger than life character: "a copper-colored, big-bellied, well-dressed, courteous young man with a noble soul," boasting how "[h]e would sail anywhere ii paid enough," because "he was the father of two families, blessed with two wives," yet, peculiarly, a "loyal soul." (118) In spite of these dubious credentials, Marti struck a deal with him. But Hopkins shortly after reneged. Marti blamed Bastian. Hopkins, "hat in hand," sought to ease the blow of discouragement and, as an appeasement, gave Marti "an earthenware bottle of gin." (119) Unlike others, however, Hopkins stopped short of helping himself to the insurgents' funds.
Marti meanwhile correctly surmised that their absence in Montecristi portended dreadful consequences: "Once warned, Spain could besiege us in Inagua, the unfortunate island without exit." (120) In fact, Spain was at the very moment on the lookout for them. The Spanish vice-consul in Montecristi had wired Cuba with details of the expedition, which he had purchased for ten pesos. (121) Yet, Marti and his followers were not without allies. The Mayor of Montecristi insisted they had departed for Haiti. (122) Little did the Mayor know that this would soon be the revolutionaries' hideout.
Around Cuba, Spain's naval presence was hard to miss. On 13 March, the New York Herald reported that a Spanish gunboat had fired on an American steamship, the Allianca, in the Windward Passage. (123) Before that example cooled (for the Times of London was still reporting the "affair" on 1 April (124)), a Spanish gunboat "fired at the British steamship Ethelred off of Cape Maysi in the Windward Passage" on 3 April. (125) Against the backdrop of Maceo's deadly venture three days earlier, and one day after the Ethelred incident, Jose Marti toiled 46 miles away to replace a captain and crew to take them to Cuba aboard a slow sailing vessel. "Upon Providence," Gomez invoked, the insurgents had cast themselves when they departed Montecristi. (126) Whether they were uncourageous or stopped by the hand of God, Marti persuaded no sailors in Inagua to transport them aboard the Brothers.
The authorities at Matthew Town were justifiably anxious. England and Spain were allies. At any time a Spanish vessel could have entered the harbor. No difficulty existed to obtain informants interested in earning a quick peso. Leaving Inagua was imperative for the insurgents. Gomez observed on 4 April that a German fruit ship bound for bananas in Cape Haitian had arrived in port at 2 PM. With the help of the Haitian Consul, M. Sarber, the insurgents arranged with Captain Loewe, skipper of the Nordstrand, to take passage. Sarber also agreed to arrange for the return of the schooner Brothers to Poloney in Montecristi. (127) According to Marti, Sarber agreed to safeguard their materiel, being himself a "smuggler." (128) He stamped their passports. (129) Gomez recorded on 5 April only that the German steamship departed Matthew Town at 6 PM. Placing their confidence once again in "Providence," they had managed to arrange another disembarkation in Cuba, but when and where was not mentioned. (130)
Marti's diary waxes eloquently about a freighter bearing balsa wood from Mobile; happy workers who sang while off-loading her; and, the turquoise sea; he memorialized the attitude and even appearance of the loyal cook, "David, of the Turks Islands," noting, in particular, the exquisite supper he cooked for the insurgents' last night in Inagua. (131) The Nordstrand, bound for bananas in Haiti, departed on 5 April with the insurgents, who had paid Captain Loewe $1,000. The Nordstrand back-tracked the course they sailed five days earlier. Gomez recorded on 6 April that the insurgents arrived at 4 PM. (132) They were now less than 37 miles from their point of beginning on 1 April, back on the major island of Hispaniola, containing the two sovereign states of Haiti and the Dominican Republic.
The Nordstrand was a two-year-old 210-foot double-bottomed steel vessel built to Lloyd's specifications in Hamburg, Germany. She carried Lloyd's most prestigious ocean-going rating, +100A1, with a state of the art triple expansion reciprocating steam engine providing her power. (133) The ship had departed from Jamaica on her way for bananas in Cape Haitian. It remains a mystery why Captain Loewe steamed for Matthew Town instead of sweeping east from the Windward Passage straight to Cape Haitian. Luckily for the insurgents, he did not; the Nordstrand removed them from harm's way twice as fast as the Brothers had sailed them into it.
Neither Gomez's nor Marti's diary, of any of Marti's letters, indicated that Captain Loewe agreed to transport them to Cuba while in Inagua. Gomez's diary states as much: "At six o'clock on the afternoon of April 5, placing our confidence in Providence, we left aboard a German steamship. Finally, on board the ship, we arranged with the Captain to disembark in Cuba." (134) In Inagua, Captain Loewe probably bargained for no more than simply to transport six desperate passengers to Cape Haitian. Captain Loewe surely knew of the insurgents' prime intention, aware that Marti had already exhausted all opportunities on the island to recruit a new captain and crew to sail them to Cuba aboard the Brothers. Also, Captain Bastian, according to Marti, had thoroughly soured the islanders' minds. Captain Loewe, thinking like a steward of a ship (and in fairness, like Bastian), initially hesitated. His first reason centered on the hubbub surrounding Maceo's murderous invasion only five days earlier. Also, the Spanish had fired on the English merchant ship Ethelred on 3 April in the area Marti and Gomez intended to go ashore. News of such stories traveled quickly from port to port, easily reaching a port that lay but a few miles away from both occurrences.
Marti and Gomez and their followers sought simply to get away from Inagua, and Loewe provided the opportunity. The six also realized, if they intended to achieve phase two of the strategy, that they had to be on their very best behavior on the leg to Hispaniola. Good manners were a must. Marti recorded the likely time and place he struck the deal with Captain Loewe for transport to Cuba. On 6 April, while en route to Cape Haitian, Marti visited Captain Loewe's quarters, which he describes in some detail:
The Captain's berth was constructed of rich mahogany and was like the basin of a fountain. The berth covered the drawers, which were full of charts. On the mantle piece above the desk, among magazines, newspapers and navigational aids, was the complete collection of Goethe and a novel by Gaudy. Presiding over his berth was the portrait of his wife, large boned, and as sweet looking as crystallized [hard] sugar-candy. In a corner was a collection of weapons: a hunting shotgun, two large daggers, a pistol, and two sets of manacles, chains, and shackles, toward which, the Captain indicated, "sometimes those are needed for the sailors." Along side his wife's picture was a woolen yarn embroidery, "embroidered by my wife," he said. It read, in [German] Gothic letters: "In All Storms, In All Distress, May He Protect You, The True God." (135)
There were no witnesses to Marti's conversation with Loewe. Fluent in German, Marti had no problem conversing with the Captain. One can only conjecture at the dialogue between them and wonder how Gomez might have rendered it. Gomez did note, however, when the Nordstrand arrived at Cape Haitian at four o'clock in the afternoon on 6 April, "[we] scattered among people so not to be noticed." (136)
Gomez reported later that he found "asylum with Mr. Mercier, an associate of Dr. Dellunde," both of whom had supported Cuban freedom fighters, adding that "Marcos del Rosario, the Dominican [and faithful aid] remained by his side," and went on, "I have been treated with the most exquisite amiability by this excellent man. (137) The other companions, Jose Marti, Francisco Borrero, Angel Guerra, and Cesar Salas, lodged in different houses of friends." Gomez wrote, of the seventh and eighth, "the same and no news to report." (138)
Besides Marti's and Gomez's, another first-person account exists of the journey which describes the layover in Cape Haitian. Marcos del Rosario, General Gomez's aid, talked about it forty years later. His recollections appeared in a collection of memoirs compiled by Cuba's Ministry of Culture. (139) Gomez, said Marcos del Rosario, "pretended to be ill, though nothing at all was wrong with him; he became a patient," and was taken to "Dr. Dellunde, a medical friend of the Cubans," after which, "[I] did not see either the Doctor or the Doctor's young female servant [Lola] again; Marti and the others remained hidden." (140)
In contrast to Gomez's straightforward account of the layover, Marti is evasive. His diary does not refer to any business arrangement with Captain Loewe, the whereabouts of his companions, or even who they were. From a practical view his rationale was sensible. If what he wrote fell into the wrong hands, the consequences might have been dire for all involved. Marti passed the time in Cape Haitian writing about the goings-on outside his bedroom window. On Sunday, 7 April, Marti wrote that he enjoyed a
... strong, dark, black coffee, [while] fresh sunlight ascended on the other side of the window blinds. [He watched] the neighborhood street market [, where people] toiled [and danced the] chacharea ... merchants barked their wares, and fruit vendors sold star apples. [Sitting] with his back to the window writing [, he] heard the ruffling of a petticoat [and the] dragging of slippers on the cobblestone street. [In the] distance [there were] tambourines and trumpets. [While] rain of yesterday had cleared, this was one of God's good days. [There was the sound of] a cane on the sidewalk [and an] eloquent one preaching religion [in French]. (141)
Marti dislodged from his diary "two soiled cards." On the "smaller" he had written "Mlle. Elise Etienne, Cape Haitian," and on the larger, "Mr. Edmond Ferere." (142) Marti made no reference regarding their involvement with Cuban freedom or the insurgents' layover in Cape Haitian. Elsewhere, there did not appear any historical reference about them. Perhaps they had a connection with the whereabouts of Gomez and Marcos's hideout or even that of the other three insurgents.
Marti made two diary entries on 8 April. His first contained an analogy to Cuba's struggle for independence with the North-American Indians' "assimilation" and inevitable "cultural meltdown." (143) He empathized with the Indians' "resistance," servitude, "emancipation," indoctrination, and subsequent "natural disappearance." (144) Marti linked their extinction with Cuba's lack of well-being and imminent late. Marti's second entry echoed the theme of his first but in more detail. He concluded his 8 April entry with glowing praise for "Tom, from St. Thomas, a loyal black servant of Dr. Dellunde's," who shuttled books back and forth for him from a "Haitian bookstore down on the corner." (145)
Guessing the whereabouts of Marti and Gomez proved interesting for the US and British press. As early as 26 February the New York Herald had concluded, "the news received last night from Cuba tells that [Marti and Gomez] have landed, for their arrival was to be the signal for the uprising." (146) On the twenty-seventh, the Herald elaborated: "Marti left New York by the last San Domingo steamer about January 22, and he and General Gomez have landed in Cuba from San Domingo with a small band of leaders." (147) William Randolph Hearst's San Francisco Examiner also offered its rendition of the invasion on the 27th: "Generals Marti and Gomez are at the head of the revolution. They reached the island from Vera Cruz, Mexico, on the 24th." (148) That Marti attained the rank of "general" surely came as a surprise to some people. By 5 April 1895, newspaper stories in major cities incorrectly reported Marti and Gomez had invaded Cuba no less than a dozen times. If this were only true, it certainly would have pleased the six insurgents scattered throughout Cape Haitian, waiting, and indeed wondering if Captain Loewe of the Nordstrand intended to fulfill his bargain.
Suddenly, on 6 April, stories in The New York Times and the New York Daily Tribune proved frighteningly precise. The Times" headline read, "GOMEZ AWAITS AN ENGLISH VESSEL," and went on to add what the Tribune said. (149) The Tribune's headline read: "CUBAN REBELS DISPERSED, General Gomez Said to be in Haiti, Waiting to Get Across to Cuba." (150) Both stories included alarming facts, such as, "General Gomez, the insurgent chief, is awaiting on the north coast of Haiti an English vessel which is to convey him to Cuba [italics added]." (151) Only the bit about the "English vessel" was incorrect, since the vessel was German. The New York Times further reported: "The announcement of the Haitian Government that Gens. Gomez and Marti would be arrested and imprisoned if found in the Black Republic is looked upon rather quizzically by patriots here." (152) While it is probably accurate that the Haitian government's true position was contrary to its words, a premium nevertheless existed for information to lead Spanish forces to Marti and Gomez. Considering that Spanish spies indeed existed, a noose, in fact, tightened as the insurgents arrived on that very day, 6 April, in Cape Haitian. Marti's and Gomez's whereabouts could only have been disclosed from sources in Inagua.
The insurgents prepared to leave Haiti on 9 April. Gomez wrote that day in his diary: "I went to Dr. Dellunde's house at eight o'clock in the night, at nine o'clock we embarked for the same German steamship." (153) They spent the night aboard the Nordstrand. Gomez wrote on 10 April,
We awoke still in port [at Cape Haitian]. The Captain informed us that the steamship would not be able to leave until after twelve. Aboard the steamship we left at two o'clock in the afternoon [10 April]--bound for Inagua to leave twenty-five workers; from there [the Nordstrand] would immediately set course for Port Antonio, Jamaica. (154)
Marti, on 9 April, wrote neither about method nor means regarding the journey. Instead, he observed Dr. Dellunde's female servant: "Lola ... crying on the balcony ... [w]e embarked," writing the next day that "[w]e departed the Cape ... [a]t daybreak [11 April] we arrived in Inagua ... [h]eightened vigilance." (155)
The 11 April 1895 entry in Gomez's diary provides the answer to a question puzzling later historians. Like Marti, he wrote how they arrived and awoke in Inagua. But, he expanded, "the task of putting the workers ashore was done immediately, [after which] the rowboat we had bought for 100 pesos was brought aboard [the Nordstrand]." (156) Apparently, the insurgents had by then already decided to row to Cuba from the Nordstrand. Their decision came either before departing Inagua for Cape Haitian on April 6 or while in Inagua on April 11. In either case, the rowboat was not an afterthought while on board the Nordstrand, as she steamed close to the Cuban shore. The rowboat at the very least was a contingency. The purchase also proved how determined they were.
Marti, in a 15 April letter to Quesada and Guerra (which he wrote after reaching the interior of Cuba), briefly alluded to the "good rowboat" they "purchased from Barbes," the Haitian Consul in Inagua. (157) Marti mentioned the critical role played by Barbes--who still possessed in his warehouse a large quantity of the insurgents' arras and ammunition. Gomez wrote in his diary that the Nordstrand left Inagua at two o'clock in the afternoon on 11 April bound for Jamaica. By four o'clock "we could see the mountains of Cuba on the horizon," while, four hours later, "we were three miles off the south coast of Cuba, not very far from the Port of Guantanamo." (158) Marti and Gomez doubtlessly felt they had traveled an around-the-world course to get there; finally, they were close. There has never lived a seaman who after finishing a long voyage hasn't had something to say about the weather. And indeed, Gomez reflected that "the night was gloomy, the sea was agitated, and the clouds seemed like a black funeral mantle wrapping and obscuring where we had to go." (159)
Gomez described perfectly the first stages of a Caribbean squall. In defense of Captain Loewe's decision to off-load the insurgents in their rowboat, it bears pointing out that where a squall will go--a seasoned sailor can attest--is anybody's guess. As likely as it is to hit you, it can miss you. But, if it hits, in the swiftest of all bad moments the temperature and winds viciously change from warm, eerie calm to cold, mile-a-minute blasts, and the sea transforms into seven-foot steel walls of water. The Nordstrand, like any vessel, was vulnerable. Getting too close to shore might wreck her. Caught in a squall, she risked losing steerage, or even worse, power. A rowboat could at least bob about.
Having reported Marti's and Gomez's versions of the landing earlier, Marcos del Rosario's account warrants a turn:
The [Nordstrand] left us in the sea and a storm was brewing. The night was very dark. None of us knew what to do or how to swim. Marti held the compass of the boat and the General [Gomez] the rudder. Waves battered us, the rudder tore off, and the sea carried it away. The sea took away the duffel bag containing the General's things. The sea was terrible. The night grew darker. We could not see anything. Then we saw some lights far away. We believed they were Spanish troops; but they were fishermen. We fought with the sea that wanted to swallow us. It did not want us to land on the ground in Cuba. Finally, we saw the end of our journey, cliffs, then a headland. We hit and bounced. I climbed out; Marti followed and took my arm, and afterwards, General Gomez and the others. General Gomez jumped on one of the rocks on the beach; when he saw the firm ground, the end of the trip! He kissed the ground and crowed like a rooster! I tell you, he crowed like a rooster, and I said to myself, we are saved! After what we had come through I believed we could do anything. And Marti was very happy. I did not know what we were going to do. We left the boat and began to walk, and later we found a road. (160)
They had finally reached Cuba. It took them eleven days to zigzag more than 450 miles. What they did not know was that worldwide political sympathy had grown. The Times (London) printed the following Philadelphia byline: "The Senate of Florida has adopted a resolution extending sympathy and encouragement to the Cuban insurgents.--Our Correspondent." (161)
The reason for rising support had its roots in Spanish strong-arm tactics. On 12 April 1895 (the first full day in Cuba of the six), a Herald headline read: "HAVANA A VOLCANO; Wholesale Arrests by the Spanish Continue, Many of Them Being Made Merely on Suspicion." (162)
In 37 days Marti lay dead, gunned down by the Spaniards while making his way through the mountains near Dos Rios. He intended to leave the island and return to the United States, where he had proved himself an effective organizer and fund-raiser. Hardly two months later, on 17 July, Francisco Borrero died near the town of Altagracia in a railway raid with Gomez. (163) Records have not surfaced concerning Cesar Salas and Angel Guerra. In the absence of references about them, they apparently perished in combat like Borrero, except their deaths failed to rate so much as a footnote. Only Gomez and his trusted aide, Marcos del Rosario, are certain to have survived the Cuban Revolution. Gomez died a peaceful death in Cuba in 1905. And Rosario outlived Gomez by 42 years and died in his sleep in Cuba at the age of 82 in 1947.
But thoughts of relief and celebration during the night and in the early morning of the insurgents' arrival in Cuba surely banished thoughts of gloom. By 14 April, news of Marti's and Gomez's invasion had reached official circles. The next day (dateline, Havana, 14 April 1895), the New York Herald finally got its story right: "GOMEZ IS IN CUBA, JOSE MARTI IS WITH HIM." (164)
In an ironic twist of fate, the Herald story captured why Marti enjoyed the reputation he had and foreshadowed his future legend. Reading as much like a eulogy as a profile, it summarized what Jose Marti meant to Greater America:
He is, perhaps, the greatest literary man living in Spanish-America. As a poet, prose writer and orator he has few equals. He organized the Cubans in foreign countries into the Cuban revolutionary party, and the present revolution is his work. He will probably be the head of the provisional government. Marti is of medium height and slight build, having a magnificent head, a spacious forehead, dreamy eyes and a heavy black mustache. He is a man of tremendous energy and activity. (165)
On the day before he died, Jose Marti recapitulated his view of the significance of his own life in an unfinished letter: "It is my 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." (166) This unfinished letter also includes a brief look at finally getting back to Cuba after fifteen years: "I arrived in a boat with General Maximo Gomez and four others. I was in charge of the lead oar during a storm, and we landed at an unknown quarry on one of our beaches." (167)
If the revolution was to succeed it had to have visionaries to incite passion and desire and military acumen to conduct the battles, and it was critical that both Marti and Gomez reached Cuba in April 1895. This journey shows the value of Marti's steadfastness. If he had faltered at any point, when, for example the supplies were confiscated in Florida or when the captain of the Brothers reneged, the revolution might have failed. Looking at the journey in terms of conveyance, time and distance, Marti's eleven-day passage to war had its lighter moments. It included intrigue and sourness. But Marti's passage also showed that the Cuban independence movement might have had little chance without him. In many instances during the journey, Marti demonstrated he did not have the military ability of Gomez and others in the boat. And Marti's lack of military skill probably caused his death. But his exemplary courage more than justified the title of "general" an American newspaper awarded him by mistake. The history of Jose Marti's eleven-day odyssey is about more than filling in a blank chapter in his life. It humanizes a central element of what made him a legend. Marti possessed unique grit and willpower, and he reached his goal. Rightly regarded as the apostle of Cuban independence, the memory of what he stood for lives.
(1.) Manuel Pedro Gonzalez, Jose Marti, Chapel Hill, NC: U. of North Carolina P., 1953, 72.
(2.) Gonzalez, Jose Marti, 72.
(3.) Hugh Thomas, Cuba or The Pursuit of Freedorn, New York: Da Capo Press, rev. ed., 1998, 1589; see, too, Jose Marti, The America of Jose Marti, ed. and trans. Juan de Onis, New York: Funk & Wagnalls, 1968, xi: "All [Marti's] literary out put, so varied, so haphazard, much of it unpublished or buried in publications of local circulation and in limited private editions printed in New York, was inaccessible to Hispanic readers until it was collected years after his death. Acquaintance with the work of Marti has consequently been slow and difficult even in Spanish, and much more so in other languages."
(4.) Charles E. Chapman, A History of the Cuban Republic, New York: MacMillan, 1927, 76.
(5.) Benjamin Filene, Romancing the Folk: Public Memory & American Roots Music, Chapel Hill, NC: U. of North Carolina P., 2000, 297. Pete Seeger produced Guantanamera in 1959 from a Cuban melody of the 1930s based on one of Marti's poems, Ismaelillo, crediting Marti on the label (Joan Baez, Arlo Guthrie, and Bob Dylan also produced renditions); its first four lines come straight from Marti's first stanza in Spanish: "Yo soy un hombre sincero/De donde crecen las palmas/Y antes de morirme quiero/Echar mis versos del alma" (I am an honest man/From where the palms grow/Before I die I want my soul/To shed its poetry; see Pete Seeger, The World of Pete Seeger, New York: Columbia Records, 1973 [sound recording]; Smithsonian Folkways World Music Collection, Washington, DC: Smithsonian, 1997 [sound recording]).
(6.) Juan Marinello, "El Pensamiento de Marti y Nuestra Revolucion Socialista," El Cuba Socialista, January 1962, 16-37; see also Jose Marti, Our America, trans. Elinor Randall, ed. Philip Foner, New York: Monthly Review Press, 1977, 60n96, 68; Guia del Pensamiento Politico Economico de Fidel, La Habana: N.p., n.d., 70.
(7.) See Jose Marti, "Letter to the Editor," in D. and I.S. Shulman, eds, The Jose Marti Reader, second ed., New York: Ocean Press, 2006, 223-9. Marti railed in his letter to defend patriots of the Ten Years War (1868-1878): "Because our half-breeds and city-bred young men are generally of delicate physique, of suave courtesy, and ready words, hiding under the glove that polishes the poem the hand that fells the foe--are we to be considered as the [editorial] does consider us, an 'effeminate' people? These city-bred young men and poorly built half-breeds knew in one day how to rise against a cruel government, to pay their passages to the seat of war with the pawning of their watches and trinkets, to work their way in exile while their vessels were being kept from them by the country of the free in the interest of the foes of freedom, to obey as soldiers, sleep in the mud, eat roots, fight ten years without salary, conquer foes with the branch of a tree, die" (ibid., 225-6).
(8.) My interest in telling Marti's story stems from my professional knowledge as a US licensed ship captain. My offshore-sea experience includes the areas referred to in the primary and secondary sources that describe Marti's passage (including Cuba). Also, existing historical accounts of a paragraph of two that briefly detail Marti's eleven-day passage vary widely. Thus I surmised that there was more to this story than reported.
(9.) Michael Blow, A Ship to Remember: The Maine and the Spanish-American War, New York: Morrow, 1992, 47; Chapman, Cuban Republic, 76; Philip Foner, A History of Cuba, vol. 2, New York: International Publishers, 1963, 357; Willis Fletcher Johnson, The History of Cuba, vol. 4 New York: B.F. Buck & Co., 1920, 15; Felix Lizaso, Marti: Martyr of Cuban Independence, trans. E. E. Shuler, Albuquerque, NM: U. of New Mexico P., 1953, 245-6; Walter Millis, The Martial Spirit, Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin, 1931, 31; C. Neale Ronning, Jose Marti and the Emigre Colony in Key West, New York: Praeger, 1990, 125; Thomas, Cuba, 316.
(10.) Supplementing the diaries are such chronicles as the United States' records of Documented Vessels; Lloyd's Register of Ships; and Custom and Consul records from Key West, Matthew Town (Inagua, Bahamas), Cape Haitian, and Montecristi. Contemporaneous newspaper accounts, by-products of a time in journalism that saw the rise of the yellow press, help shed light on the event (see Joseph E. Wisan, The Cuban Crisis as Reflected in the New York Press (1895-1898), New York: Octagon Books, 1965; Thomas, Cuba, 313-14).
(11.) Jose Marti, Obras Escogidas, ed. Rafael Estenger, Habana: Liberia Economica, 1953, 1213-14.
(12.) Gomez, Diario, 285.
(13.) Ludwell Lee Montague, Haiti and the United States, 1714-1938, New York: Russell & Russell, 1966, 14.
(14.) Isabel Zakrezewski Brown, Culture and Customs of the Dominican Republic, Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1999, 4.
(15.) Ronning, Marti, produces an array of examples, see, for instance, ibid., 135, 167.
(16.) Maximo Gomez, Diario de Campana del Mayor General Maximo Gomez, Habana: Centro Superior Tecnologico Caiba del Agua, 1940, 285-6; Lizaso, Marti, 245-6; Marti, Our America, 56.
(17.) Ronning, Marti, 10-15.
(19.) Marti, America of Jose Marti, xi.
(20.) Thomas, Cuba, 295; Ronning, Marti, 8.
(21.) Thomas, Cuba, 296.
(22.) Thomas, Cuba, 296. Marti lived in Havana under a false name for one month in 1877 before moving to Guatemala.
(23.) Ibid., 87-8.
(24.) Marti, Our America, 19, 25-6, 59.
(25.) Lizaso, Marti, 259; Ronning, Marti, 11-13.
(26.) Ronning, Marti, 12.
(27.) Ibid., 12-13.
(28.) Ibid., 12.
(29.) Ibid., 95.
(30.) Ibid., 97.
(31.) Jose Marti, Obra y Vida, Habana: Ministerio de Cultura, Edicones Siruela, n.d., 199.
(32.) Foner, Cuba, 351.
(33.) Foner, The Spanish-Cuban-American War and the Birth of American Imperialism, vol. I, New York: Monthly Review Press, 1972, 22n22, 313.
(34.) Ronning, Marti, 20.
(35.) Ibid., 20.
(36.) Marti, Our America, 44.
(37.) Ibid., 4, 67.
(38.) Ibid., 110, 132-33.
(39.) Ibid., 4, 80, 111, 132-33.
(40.) Ibid., 58-61.
(41.) Ibid., 145. Ronning opines here that Marti "was able to unite the far-flung emigre communities as no Cuban had ever been able to do until that time" (ibid.).
(42.) Rubens, "The Insurgent Government In Cuba," The North American Review 166, 1898, 560-70: 560; Foner, The Spanish-Cuban-American War, xxii-iii.
(43.) Thomas, Cuba, 297, 300.
(44.) Marti, Our America, 26.
(45.) Chapman, Cuban Republic, 76.
(46.) Johnson, Cuba, 14. Johnson appears to be the first to have compiled a comprehensive history of Cuba (in English) that included the Cuban Revolution of 1895 and a record of Marti and Gomez's trip, describing their journey in a few sentences, erroneously reporting that Marti and Gomez invaded "with about 80 companions," although he accurately wrote where and when the party landed in a "frail craft" (ibid.).
(47.) The first history in Spanish predated Johnson's: Rafael Guerrero, Cronica De La Guerra De Cuba, Barcelona: Libreia Editorial De M. Maucci, 2 vols, 1895-96. As far as Marti and Gomez's invasion is concerned, Guerrero simply invited readers to accept that they arrived in Cuba a few days after Maceo (see Guerrero, Cronica, 68). But Guerrero gave considerable attention to Maceo's invasion (ibid., 62-4). Maceo's invasion, however, had been widely covered in the world press. In one sense Guerrero's oversight is understandable because details of Marti and Gomez's trip never made it into the public press. Essentially, if the world press printed it, Guerrero reprinted it. For example, he covered the seizure of the ships and Cuban materiel in Fernandina, Florida (ibid., 635). And, far better than most historians, he covered Jose Marti's death and both of Marti's burials (ibid., 115-33).
(48.) Marti, Our America, 405-6nl; Marti, America of Jose Marti, 317; Thomas, Cuba, 316n1.
(49.) Gomez, Diario, 327-8.
(50.) Horatio S. Rubens, Liberty: The Story of Cuba, New York: Brewer, Warren & Pumam, 1932, 74-5.
(51.) Rubens, Liberty, 79. Rubens was not present for the exchange between Marti and Gomez but in these memoirs renders a dialogue between them as if he were, not citing who the storyteller was. Also, the newspaper was unspecified and the writer was simply cited as a veteran of the Ten Years' War.
(52.) Marti, Our America, 401-2.
(53.) Juan J. E. Casasus, La Invasion de 1895 (Gomez-Maceo), Miami, FL: La Moderna Poesia, 1981, 50.
(54.) Rubens, Liberty, 278.
(55.) Oiga Lobety Gomez de Morel, Jose Marti en Montecristi, Santo Domingo: Editora Centenario, 1999, 182.
(56.) Marti, Obras y Vida, 198. Marti never reunited with his son before his death. But his son, Jose Marti, Jr, took up his father's cause (Rubens, Liberty, 306). He left his mother in New York in 1896 where she was in pursuit of the proceeds of a $50,000 life insurance policy on her deceased husband ("Marti is Dead," The New York Times, 30 May 1895, 1; "Mrs. Marti Arrives From Cuba," The New York Times, 24 June 1895, 1).
(57.) Morel, Marti en Montecristi, 178.
(59.) The duration is based on my estimate.
(60.) Morel, Marti en Montecristi, 182.
(61.) Ibid., 182.
(62.) Ibid., 179.
(64.) Ibid., 181.
(65.) Marti, Obras Escogidas, 1213-14.
(66.) Morel, Marti en Montecristi, 179.
(67.) Gomez, Diario, 285.
(68.) Marti, Obras Escogidas, 1213.
(69.) Morel, Marti en Montecristi, 179.
(70.) Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 7, 205-7.
(73.) Rubens, Liberty, 80.
(74.) Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 7, 207.
(75.) Lloyd's Register of British and Foreign Shipping, vol. 2, Sailing Vessels, London: Gregg Press, 1967 , alphabetically ordered under "Brothers." She was built by A. E. Bethel in 1884 in Heuthera, Bahamas, and owned by R. Gibson and Brothers, and her port of Registry was Nassau. Her length was 78.5' (adding the bowsprit); her beam was 26', and she drew about 5.5 feet.
(76.) Morel, Marti en Montecristi, 182.
(77.) Gomez, Diario, 285.
(78.) Distance and speed are reported in nautical miles (abbreviated, nm): 1 nm equals 6076.1 feet, essentially equivalent to one minute of latitude and equivalent to approximately 1.15 percent of a land of statute mile.
(79.) Morel, Marti en Montecristi, 182, (Morel's conclusion); also, Marti's letter of 15 April 1895 to Gonzalo de Quesada and Benjamin Guerra in which he summarized the journey, Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 7, Habana: Centros de Estudios Martinianos, 2001, 204-5.
(80.) Morel, Marti en Montecristi, 182; Marti, Obras Completas, rol. 19, 210.
(81.) Foner writes that money was ultimately at stake with Cuba: "The movement in Cuba for annexation to the United States began as early as 1810, when representatives of the wealthy planters entered secret negotiations with the U.S. Consul in Havana. In the interests of preserving the slave system, they were ready" (Foner, Cuba, vol. 2, 9).
(82.) Foner, Cuba, vol. 2, 275; Thomas, Cuba, 270.
(83.) "Marti's writings, collected and edited by Gonzalo de Quesada y Miranda, fill seventy volumes. Even this edition is incomplete since there still remains uncollected material scattered in South American newspapers" (Marti, Our America, 9).
(84.) Marti, Our America, 15-45.
(85.) Foner, Spanish-Cuban-American War, vol. 1, 3; Thomas, Cuba, 305; Rubens, Liberty, 72-4.
(86.) Rubens, Liberty, 70-1.
(87.) Ibid., 71-2.
(88.) Ibid., 74.
(89.) Foner, Cuba, vol. 2, 359n20, 378; Marti, Obras Complatas, vol. 1,271.
(90.) Rubens, Liberty, 74-5.
(91.) Ibid., 75.
(92.) Ibid., 75.
(93.) Gomez, Diario, 285.
(94.) Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 7, 206.
(95.) Rubens, Liberty, 80.
(97.) Decades before 1895 Matthew Town was a bustling port, which saw the shipment of tons of salt from the island's mines. But a slump in the market after the American Civil War reduced Matthew Town to a pit-stop harborage for those en route to, or from, the Windward Passage. Both Inagua islands, Great and Little, are desolate and surrounded by shoals. Therefore, by elimination, the only harbor at either island deep enough for the Brothers and the Nordstrand was Matthew Town, Great Inagua--forty-six miles northeast of Cuba (see Jerrems C. Hart and William T. Stone, A Cruising Guide to the Caribbean and the Bahamas, New York: Dodd, Mead, 1982, 150, who note, "Today, Morton Salt is the only commercial enterprise on Great Inagua and recreational harborage is discouraged"). For understanding the depth, which by elimination places the harbor at Inagua, see Lloyd's, Register of British and Foreign Shipping, vol. I, Steamers, 1895-6, London: Lloyd's Register, 1895-6, "Nor."
(98.) Foner, Antonio Mateo: The "Bronze Titan" of Cuba's Struggle For independence, New York: Monthly Review Press, 1977, 166-7.
(99.) Hart and Stone, Cruising Guide, 152.
(100.) Foner, Maceo, 166-67.
(101.) Rubens, Liberty, 78.
(102.) "Insurgent Leaders Land: They Killed Their Boat Captain," The New York Times, 4 April 1895, 1.
(104.) Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 19, 208.
(107.) Gomez, Diario, 285.
(111.) Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 7, 205.
(112.) Gomez, Diario, 285.
(113.) Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 7, 205.
(114.) Gomez, Diario, 286.
(115.) Gomez, Diario, 285. Marti's diary reflects, meanwhile, the poverty of Matthew Town and the beautiful natural surroundings (Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 19, 208).
(116.) Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 19, 209.
(117.) Morel, Marti in Monteiristi, 184.
(118.) Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 19, 209-10.
(120.) Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 7, 205.
(121.) Morel, Marti en Montecristi, 182.
(122.) Ibid., 182.
(123.) "Cannon Shot at Our Flag," New York Herald, 13 March 1895, 1.
(124.) "The United States," Times (London), 1 April 1895, 1.
(125.) "Fired Across Her Bows," New York Herald, 4 April 1895, 1.
(126.) Gomez, Diario, 285.
(127.) Gomez, Diario, 286.
(128.) Morel referred to him as "M. Sarber," see Morel, Martien Montecristi, 183. Marti referred to him as "Barbes," see Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 7, 205.
(129.) Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 7, 205.
(130.) Gomez, Diario, 286.
(131.) Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 7, 210.
(132.) Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 19, 208; Gomez, Diario, 286
(133.) Lloyd's, Register, "Nor."
(134.) Gomez, Diario, 286.
(135.) Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 19, 210.
(136.) Gomez, Diario, 287.
(137.) Ibid., 286.
(139.) Jose Marti, Obras y Vida, Habana: Ministerio de cultures, Ediciones, 1995, 203.
(140.) Ibid., 203.
(141.) Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 19, 211.
(142.) Ibid., 211.
(143.) Ibid., 212.
(146.) "Exiled Leaders Land," New York Herald, 26 February 1895, 1.
(147.) "Have Faith in Gomez," New York Herald, 27 February 1895, 1.
(148.) "Battle for Cuba's Freedom," San Francisco Examiner, 27 February 1895, 1.
(149.) "GOMEZ AWAITS AN ENGLISH VESSEL," The New York Times, 6 April 1895, 1.
(150.) "CUBAN REBELS DISPERSED," New York Daily Tribune, 6 April 1895, 1.
(151.) "GOMEZ AWAITS," 1.
(152.) Ibid,, 1.
(153.) Gomez, Diario, 286
(155.) Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 19, 215.
(156.) Gomez, Diario, 327.
(157.) Marti, Obras Completas, vol. 7, 206.
(158.) Gomez, Diario, 327.
(159.) Ibid., 327.
(160.) Marti, Obras y Vida, 203.
(161.) "The Revolt in Cuba," Times, 13 April 1895, 1.
(162.) "HAVANA A VOLCANO," New York Herald, 12 April 1895, 1.
(163.) Rubens, Liberty, 115.
(164.) "GOMEZ IS IN CUBA, JOSE MARTI IS WITH HIM," New York Herald, 15 April 1895, 1.
(166.) Foner, Cuba, vol. 2, 359.
(167.) Marti, Our America, 442.
Paul Braun is a Ph.D. candidate in the College of Journalism al the University of Florida. Paul holds a B.A. in English, M.B.A., and M.A.s in History, English, and Journalism. His research concerns how journalism blends virtually unnoticed into fictional writing and the way history reflects unbeknownst contemporaneous events that shaped writers' stories during their era. Paul's study also takes in Florida history, Cuban history, and Caribbean literature and culture, inspired from his 20 years" experience as a ship's captain throughout the islands.
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|Author:||Braun, Paul F.|
|Date:||Sep 22, 2012|
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