Puerto Rico was first settled by a succession of indigenous peoples beginning 2,000 to 4,000 years ago; these included the Ortoiroid, Saladoid, and Taíno. It was then colonized by Spain following the arrival of Christopher Columbus in 1493. Puerto Rico was contested by other European powers, but remained a Spanish possession for the next four centuries. An influx of African slaves and settlers primarily from the Canary Islands and Andalusia vastly changed the cultural and demographic landscape of the island. Within the Spanish Empire, Puerto Rico played a secondary but strategic role compared to wealthier colonies like Peru and New Spain. By the late 19th century, a distinct Puerto Rican identity began to emerge, centered around a fusion of indigenous, African, and European elements. In 1898, following the Spanish–American War, the United States acquired Puerto Rico.
Roberto Cofresí y Ramírez de Arellano (June 17, 1791 – March 29, 1825), better known as El Pirata Cofresí, was a pirate from Puerto Rico. He was born into a noble family, but the political and economic difficulties faced by the island as a colony of the Spanish Empire during the Latin American wars of independence meant that his household was poor. Cofresí worked at sea from an early age which familiarized him with the region's geography, but it provided only a modest salary, and he eventually decided to abandon the sailor's life and became a pirate. He had previous links to land-based criminal activities, but the reason for Cofresí's change of vocation is unknown; historians speculate that he may have worked as a privateer aboard El Scipión, a ship owned by one of his cousins.
At the height of his career, Cofresí evaded capture by vessels from Spain, Gran Colombia, the United Kingdom, Denmark, France, and the United States. He commanded several small-draft vessels, the best known a fast six-gun sloop named Anne, and he had a preference for speed and maneuverability over firepower. He manned them with small, rotating crews which most contemporaneous documents numbered at 10 to 20. He preferred to outrun his pursuers, but his flotilla engaged the West Indies Squadron twice, attacking the schooners USS Grampus and USS Beagle. Most crew members were recruited locally, although men occasionally joined them from the other Antilles, Central America, and Europe. He never confessed to murder, but he reportedly boasted about his crimes, and 300 to 400 people died as a result of his pillaging, mostly foreigners. (Full article...)
"Despacito" (American Spanish: [despa'sito]; "Slowly") is a song by Puerto Rican singer Luis Fonsi featuring Puerto Rican rapper and singer Daddy Yankee as the lead single from Fonsi's 2019 studio album Vida. Released on January 12, 2017, the song was written by Fonsi, Erika Ender and Daddy Yankee, and produced by Mauricio Rengifo and Andrés Torres. A remix version featuring Canadian singer Justin Bieber was released on April 17, 2017, which helped to improve the chart performance of the song in numerous countries, including various number-one positions. "Despacito" has been widely credited by music journalists as being instrumental in popularizing Spanish-language pop music in the mainstream market again.
Ivy Queen is a Puerto Rican singer and songwriter who has received awards and nominations for her contributions to the music industry, specifically in Latin music and several of its subgenres. Having sold more than two million records, she is the most successful female reggaetón artist and the "only significant female reggaetón rapper" according to The New York Times. Ivy Queen is commonly referred to as the "Queen of Reggaetón" in a genre dominated by male singers, and has become the "indisputable lead female voice of not only Latin urban and reggaetón music but an international icon for Latin music itself" according to the president of Universal Music Latino.
Francisco "Pancho" Coimbre Atiles (29 January 1909 – 4 November 1989), more commonly known as Pancho Coimbre, was a Puerto Rican professional baseball player. He was born in the municipality of Coamo and moved to Ponce early in his life. It was in Ponce where he would begin to actively participate in sports, both in sprinting and baseball. Coimbre played thirteen seasons in the Puerto Rican Professional Baseball League (LBPPR), with the Leones de Ponce. During this period the team won five league championships. He finished his career with an average of .337, and had an average of 2.2 strikeouts per season, this included four consecutive seasons from 1939 to 1942, without any strikeouts. Coimbre also won two LBPPR batting titles and the league's Most Valuable Player Award in 1943.
Coimbre traveled to New York City, after completing his first professional season in Puerto Rico, where he joined the Porto Rico Stars baseball team of the Negro leagues.[A] He was contracted by the New York Cubans while playing with the Porto Rico Stars. He joined the NY Cubans and played several seasons for them. Coimbre's batting average remained over the .300 mark, including two seasons in which he batted over .400. While playing in the Negro leagues he was selected to play in the league's East–West All-Star games twice, where he played with several players who in the future would be elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. He also played with teams established in Colombia, Venezuela, the Dominican Republic and Mexico. Following his retirement, Coimbre worked as a coach and manager of teams in both the professional and amateur leagues of Puerto Rico. Coimbre, who was eighty years old, died due to a fire at his home. (Full article...)
The land offensive began on July 25, when 1,300 infantry soldiers led by Major General Nelson A. Miles disembarked off the coast of Guánica. After controlling the first skirmish, the Americans advanced to Coamo, where they engaged Puerto Rican and Spanish troops in battle. The battle concluded when the allied soldiers retreated after the battle left two dead on their side, and four on the American side. The United States was able to seize control of Fajardo on August 1, but was forced to withdraw on August 5 after a group of 200 Puerto Rican–Spanish soldiers led by Pedro del Pino gained control of the city, while most civilian inhabitants fled to a nearby lighthouse. The Americans encountered larger opposition as they advanced towards the main island's interior. They engaged in two crossfires in Guamani River and Coamo, both of which were inconclusive as the allied soldiers retreated. A battle in San Germán concluded in a similar fashion with the Spanish retreating to Lares. (Full article...)
William Daniel Leahy (May 6, 1875 – July 20, 1959) was an American naval officer who served as the most senior United States military officer on active duty during World War II. He held multiple titles and was at the center of all major military decisions of the U.S. during World War II. As fleet admiral, Leahy was the first U.S. naval officer ever to hold a five-star rank in the U.S. Armed Forces. He has been described by historian Phillips O'Brien as the "second most powerful man in the world" for his influence over U.S. foreign and military policy throughout the war.
"A Puro Dolor" is a song recorded by Puerto Rican band Son by Four. It was written by Omar Alfanno and released as the first single of the second studio album of the band in 1999. Two versions of the track were produced by Oscar Llord for the album; one as a salsa and the other as a ballad. The ballad version was arranged by Alejandro Jaén.
The song reached number-one on Billboard Top Latin Songs chart, and became the longest running chart topper of its history, spending 20 weeks at the top; this record was broken five years later by Colombian singer Shakira with "La Tortura" which spent 25 weeks at number-one. "A Puro Dolor" also reached the Billboard 100; this led to the recording of an English-language version of the track "Purest of Pain", which was also charted in the United States. (Full article...)
... that in 1822, there was an attempt, known as the Ducoudray Holstein Expedition, conceived, carefully planned and organized General Henri La Fayette Villaume Ducoudray Holstein to invade Puerto Rico and declare it the "República Boricua" and that General Ducoudray Holstein intended to make the city of Mayagüez the capital of the island? The plans of the invasion were soon disclosed to the Spanish authorities and the plot never materialized.
... that Old San Juan has more than four hundred carefully restored 16th and 17th century Spanish colonial buildings?
... that in 1858, wired communication in Puerto Rico began in the town of Arroyo, the first in Latin America, when Samuel Morse introduced the telegraph into the island?
... that when the United States enacted the Chinese Exclusion Act on May 6, 1882, many Chinese in the United States fled to Puerto Rico? They established small niches and worked in restaurants and laundries.
^ abCedó Alzamora, Federico (2010), Mayagüez Capital de la República Boricua(PDF) (in Spanish) (2 ed.), Mayagüez: Oficina de Publicaciones Históricas, Museo Eugenio María de Hostos, Departamento de Arte y Cultura, Gobierno Municipal de Mayagüez, p. 44