From here, I would like to express my gratitude to our man in Havana, Tomeu Sancho, whom we have fondly addressed since he first guided us while writing this book on a trip to Cuba, specifically Palma Soriano, in 1991. Palma, cities and towns around the world. Yes, thanks for telling the unsaid: Antonio Maceo chair It’s in Cuba, thanks to Ultima Hora finding it in some kind of storage at the Mallorca Museum – and it may still exist.
In the 95th and 97th years of the last century, I was in Cuba several times with photographer Joan Torres. The newspaper had decided to publish three comprehensive news stories in Brisas magazine, the first of which we had to go to Cuba, the Philippines and Puerto Rico, on the occasion of the century since the loss of overseas Spanish colonies. .
Professor Marimón helped us a lot when it came to learning about Cuba’s independence. He told us about Antonio Maceo and Luis Marti, the strength and intelligence of the army. revolution against Spain. He also spoke of Demajagua, where Céspedes rang the bell and shouted. Long live free Cuba! A cry that went down in history as Baire’s cry, not only freeing his slaves but arming them, he confronted the Spanish army the next day in the nearby town of Valmaseda. And of course he talked to us. Antonio Maceo, head of the mambí army and naturally named Weyler’s Bronze Titan. They told us all this again when we visited the house of Céspedes, the Palace of the Generals, the San Pedro field, Maceo’s house in Santiago…
When we were in Cuba, we were in Santiago, the birthplace of Antonio Maceo. There, we absorbed his life and work, and the people he commanded, the mambises, among many of his memories. We were also on the San Pedro field, where the Majorcan general defeated him and took his saddle and field saddle as a trophy. Come on, we touch history with our hands. So they didn’t tell us, we didn’t read it either. We know this because we were there in the scenarios that happened.
I don’t know which Cuban, because we spoke to many people who told us that Weyler brought three trophies to Majorca: Maceo’s horse saddle, machete and campaign chair made from a palm tree trunk.
When I arrived in Palma, I looked for these three things but to no avail. One day I spoke to Sebastià Serra, one of the fathers of Balearic Democracy and a professor at the UIB, and he told me that “Maceo’s saddle was made by Felipe González. Fidel Castro I have no idea about the machete and the campaign podium, which I think was displayed in the Provincial Headquarters of the Movement when the dictatorship was replaced by Democracy and the headquarters of the dictatorship was the headquarters of the latter, everything smelled of Francoism either destroyed or lost or scattered in different places. That’s why – Sebastià insisted – if I were you, I would look at: Majorca Museum».
After thanking Serra, I contacted Rosselló Bordeaux, who was the Museum director at the time. He was very kind to me. I asked him about the chair and he took me to that kind of warehouse. “Is this what you’re looking for?” he asked, pointing to a palm-wood chair. said. After flipping it over I saw the Cuban flag and two initials AM, Antonio Maceo unmistakably engraved on the back.
I took the photos and went to City Hall where a plenary meeting was held under the chairmanship of Joan. Fageda. I approached Councilor for Culture Pep Carles Tous cautiously and told him that I had found Antonio Maceo’s chair at the Museu de Mallorca. Tous looked at me like someone staring at a Martian. «Make…? Who is this gentleman…?». I had no idea, so I concluded, let alone the chair, it was.
I wrote the report and got a call the next day after it was published in Ultima Hora. Cuban emigrated to MiamiHe said that a group of citizens, followers of Más Canosa, will travel to Palma to meet with the City Council to see Maceo’s chair and take him to Little Havana, where he will be greeted with all honors. I notified Congressman Pep Carles Tous in case he was interested in attending the Cuban meeting – Maceo’s chair and… And boy, was he? as if you were in the museum in the early hours of the morning. Meanwhile, Rosselló Bordeaux was kind enough to take the chair from the warehouse and place it on a pedestal in the hall of the building. Cubans came from Miami, spoke to Tous, told them the chair wasn’t going anywhere, he needed to see how things were before… And he took him to his office on Cort, weeks later I saw it installed. inside a methacrylate polyhedron urn.
Ah! Before I continue, I should say that the Miami Herald called me at night and interviewed me about the chair. They called me, not the Cultural Councilor or the Mayor of Palma. For me.
After a while, if I remember correctly, when Carmen Feliu became the person in charge of Culture, the lectern passed to the President. San Carlos Fortress, led by Lieutenant Colonel Durán at the time, is a welcome tribute to the great work he did in that fort. As a result of this, a room was created in Weyler’s honour, to which he dedicates hours, and… Yes, what could be better than there, right…?
nobody talked about us
Many Cubans residing or vacationing on the island went to San Carlos to see the chair, which gained importance as time went on. Moreover, when we found him, almost no one knew about Maceo’s life and work in Mallorca (and, we’re about to say, fewer people would know about it if it weren’t for our trips to Cuba that we’ve published through Ultima Hora). ), gradually became popular…. And as for returning him to Cuba. The chair wouldn’t budge until the higher chambers decided. Come on, from being completely foreign and worthless – that’s why he was here – to being recognized and subject to decisions from above.
I know that Tomeu Sancho is one of the people who made the most publicity about the “discovery” of Maceo’s chair in Cuba and who struggled the hardest to get him to go to Havana and not Miami. He is always quoting Ultima Hora in different media in the Cuban capital, and for that – he knows – we are very grateful.
However, when Maceo’s lectern went to Cuba a few years ago to have President Sánchez provisionally hand it over to the Cuban president, accompanied by a group of officials from Palma, no one, absolutely no one, mentioned Ultima Time. after all, the architect of the chair returning to the island… Nobody! We don’t want our newspaper to be named on a street in Havana, we want it to be less publicly known, right? Citarno, let’s go… Well, nothing, not a word. It’s just that Sancho mentioned us once again. Just like he did now, again from Havana.
But I also understand who are in power now, who went to Cuba with a chair… What were they 24 years ago…? Students… Recent graduates…? Surely no one knew who Maceo was before Ultima Hora published the find.
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