Beginning Of The War Of Independence
Celebrated every year in Cuba on the 10th of October, the day is known as The Beginning Of The War Of Independence is a popular holiday in the country. Also known as Cuban Independence Day or Dia de la Independencia in Spanish, this holiday commemorates the beginning of the Ten Years’ War—a war that took place from October 10th, 1868 to May 28th, 1878 and resulted in Cuba’s independence from Spain.
Because this is a public holiday in Cuba, many non-essential government offices, schools and businesses are closed and it’s a day off for the general population.
The History Of The Beginning Of The War Of Independence
During the Peninsular Wars of the 19th century, Napoleon’s brother Joseph became King of Spain. Because many of the Spanish colonies located in South and Central America didn’t feel a connection to this new regime, there was a movement of independence that was ignited. A spark that would eventually spread to Cuba.
Although Cuba remained loyal to Spain in the beginning, enthusiasm for independence began to grow and there was an increasing resentment against Spain’s administration. An administration that many people felt was weak, repressive, and corrupt.
The wealthy sugar mill owner, Carlos Manuel de Céspedes, and his followers declared their independence from the corrupt Spanish administration on October 13th, 1868. This would ignite the 10-Years’ War. As the name of this war implies, it would last for approximately 10-years until May 28th, 1878. This is when the Spanish surrendered. However, full independence from Spain wouldn’t arrive immediately and it would be another 30-years before Cuba gained its independence.
Observing The Beginning Of The War Of Independence
This holiday is observed with parades, festivals, fireworks, music, and dancing. It’s a day off for the general population as well, so people spend time with loved ones, break bread with friends and family, and enjoy the day off.