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The Father of the Nation and First President of the Republic of Cuba in Arms writes a significant letter to Mayor General Francisco y Cisneros referring to the corruption of Holguin, the imprisonment of the Assembly of New York, the achievements of their movement, the law of the military organization and the trust the government had put in him.
Autograph Letter Signed: "JM de Cespedes" in iron gall ink. 14¼x10½. Fully Translated in English: "M.G. Francisco y Cisneros. My dear fiend: Looking at your letters from the 26th and 27th of the past month, I reply to them reproducing what I have already told you in my letter of this past June 30th. I wish, just like you, that Julio Peralta comes to this place, because that way, he would be able to clear up the too many dark particulars that exist in the matter of Holguin, hoping that everything disappears and that we will be able to uniform the military operations and the other that our government chose in that jurisdiction. I had already received the news that the Spanish give regarding the imprisonment of the Assembly of New York: and I have considered that if that is true, is without a doubt a consequence of great events that have taken place there and that benefit us. For that reason, the news has not alarmed me, and instead, is making me wait for the effects I refer to. The designations that Yordan wants and that you recommended me will be given as soon as the law about the military organization is promulgated, which confection we have already finished. Those designations will be issued according to Yordan or the correspondent chief's proposal. In order to satisfy the wishes of Yordan we have agreed that he writes all of his letters in english, which you can inform him without prejudice of receiving the order from the War Secretary. I not only consider you with the right of involving in our business, even if they are not of your interest, but I think you have the obligation to do it, when that is so beneficial to the cause we defend and to which you have consecrated your important services. Therefore, excuse in the future such manifestations because the trust that the government has in you authorizes you to intervene in its business. Your friend and server, CM de Cespedes. I have attached you the parts taken from the "Voice of Cuba" in la Habana. Sabanilla. July 2, 1869." Carlos Manuel Perfecto del Carmen de Cespedes y Lopez del Castillo (1819-1874), was a landowner and lawyer in eastern Cuba, near Bayamo. In 1843 he participated in the general insurrection of General Juan Prim, reason for which he was exiled to France. Later, he traveled to England, Switzerland, Turkey, Greece, Germany and Italy and could learn various languages such as english, french and italian. In addition, he knew latin and greek since he was a little boy. In 1844 after returning from Spain, where he acquired his doctor's degree, he purchase "La Demajagua", an estate with a sugar plantation and on that same year he opened a lawyer office and wrote poems and a pamphlet in which he makes a defense of Cuba. Carlos Manuel secretly started his plans for the Cuban independence. Besides that, De Cespedes not only translated into Spanish some chants of the "Eneida" that never published but also wrote the comedy "Las dos Dianas". The music of the first known Cuban love song "La Bayamesa" was composed by Carlos Manuel himself and Francisco Castillo Moreno. That song was used by the Cuban patriots, who modified its lyrics and turned it into a combative song against Spain. In 1852 Carlos Manuel participated in the rebellion of Las Pozas and was sent to jail due to his political attitude against Spain and had his uncle Lucas del Castillo and poet Jose Fornaris y Cespedes as cellmates. He returned to prison two more times, and in the course of all that time he continued writing poems and doing translations. All this happened during the first and second period of Cuban General Captain Gutierrez de la Concha. Carlos Manuel was a music and poetry lover who also practiced swordplay, equitation and chess, and since he conspired in the Society of Recreo and in the masonic lodge of his natal city, he was exiled twice. In 1856 he was distinguished as a prominent lawyer and business man in the city of Manzanilla, where he moved in and ten years later his literary production was abundant and varied, and on December 7, 1866 he wrote the poem "La Conchita". The newly founded Masonic Lodge of Bayamo, called "Estrella Tropical No. 19" (Tropical Star no. 19) had a meeting in august and Francisco Vicente Aguilera was given the title of "Venerable Master", but in the reality, he was presiding an insurrectional committee. The next reunion took place in the house of Pedro "Perucho" Figueredo. On that occasion, Figueredo sat at the piano and composed the music for the National Anthem. The Committee of Bayano was formed and auscultated Holguin, Santiago, Camaguey and Las Villas. De Cespedes y Lopez del Castillo was the leader in the conspiracy of Manzanillo and on October 10, 1868 he made the "Grito de Yara"(Cry of Yara) declaring the independence of Cuba, which led in the Ten Year's War. That same morning, after sounding the slave bell that indicated his slaves it was time to start working, they stood before him waiting for orders but instead of that he surprisingly informed them they were free men, and also invited them to join him and his fellow conspirators in the war against the Spanish government of Cuba. The Ten Year's War was the first serious attempt to achieve independence from the Spaniards and to free all slaves. With the discrepancies of the rebel leaders, especially the ones of Camaguey, the Constitution of Guaimaro redacted by Ignacio Agramonte and Antonio Zambrana was proclaimed on April 10, 1869 and once approved by everyone, the Republic of Cuba in Arms was born, and the political differences among the leaders of Camaguey, Bayamo and Manzanillo disappeared. During the Assembly of Guaimaro, Cespedes was chosen as the First President of the Republic of Cuba in Arms and he continued battling until the slavery was abolished. Salvador Cisneros Betancourt presided the Chamber of Representatives and Manuel Quesada y Loynaz was named Chief of Army. The Chamber had faculties to destitute both, the President and the Military Chief. Carlos Manuel aspired to the total and absolute independence of Cuba but Cisneros Betancourt inclined for the north American annexation. The errant government in arms was first established in Guaimaro, but the Spaniards dislodged it soon and had to move to Berrocal, Sabanilla and Magaramba. The Chamber of Representatives objected the attitudes of Manuel de Quesada and deposed him. De Cespedes tried to have his resignation accepted instead of being destitute but they denied him so, and was sent to New York in an official mission. His son Oscar was made prisoner by the Spanish troops and the general Caballero de Rodas sent a message to Carlos Manuel saying that he would free his son if he stopped his fighting for the independence. It is legendary the response that De Cespedes gave him, he said: "Tell general Caballero de Rodas that Oscar is not my only child: I am the father of all the Cubans who have died for the Revolution". For that reason, Cubans consider him as the Father of the Nation. Carlos Manuel was deposed in 1873 in a leadership coup and the Spanish troops killed him in February 1874 in a mountain refuge, as the new Cuban would not let him go into exile and denied him an escort. The war ended in 1878 with the Pact of Zanjon, which did some concessions: liberation of all slaves and Chinese who had fought with the rebels and no action for political offenses; but did not grant freedom for slaves and no independence. The Cry of Yara had achieved something, though, not enough, but it had lit a long-burning fuse. Lessons learned there were later put to good use in the Cuban War of Independence. Sealed. Mold marks on front. Multiple mailing folds. Pinhead-size holes on front. 3½-inch and 1¼-inch separations at middle fold. Frayed left side edges. Otherwise, fine condition.

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Born: April 18, 1819 in Bayamo, Cuba
Died: February 27, 1874 in Sierra Maestra, Cuba

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