Arbuckle Coffee Trade Cards Banner


Size: 3" x 5"
Copyrighted: 1891
Lithographer: Joseph P. Knapp

Havana, Cuba - Tacon Theatre; Plantation Negro; Opera Singer
Illustrations: Market Scene; The Tacon Theatre; Plantation Negro; View of Havana; Opera Singer

Reverse - Text
Right section:
Havana or Habana, the Capital of Cuba, was founded by Diego Velasquez in 1515, on an unhealthy site near the present harbor of Baracoa on the south coast of the island, but it was removed to its present location on the northern coast in 1519, since which time it has become one of the chief cities of commerce in the New World. From the sea it presents a picturesque appearance, with its long lines of fortifications, church towers, and shipping, by which the somewhat tawdry effect of the gaily colored houses is relieved. The site of the old walls, demolished in 1702, defines the limit of what is regarded as the intramural and the extramural city. The former, lying close to the harbor, has narrow and crowded streets, while the latter is laid out on a spacious plan, with wide thoroughfares, frequently fringed with trees. Most of the houses are built of slatestone and have flat roofs like those of Southern Spain. The erection of wooden buildings has been illegal since 1772, and are only found in the suburban districts. There is a lavish use of white marble in decorations, but although the native quarries could furnish a supply, the marble is brought from Genoa. Cafés, clubs and casinos are largely patronized, showing the general absence of quiet domestic life. There are many churches, of which the cathedral is the most noted. Its exterior is plain, but within are richly frescoed walls, floor of variegated marble, and costly altars. In the wall of the chancel a second-rate medallion and a sorrier inscription, distinguish the tomb of Columbus, whose remains were removed thither in 1796. The principal theatre is the Tacon, holding about 3,000 persons; but the attractions of the bull-arena and the cock-pit are said to exceed those of the drama. The people are very proud of their vehicles, the one called a "volante" consisting of two huge wheels with a hooded seat swung between shafts so long that the horse is a about three yards distant from the driver.
Population 1888, 198,271.