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Buena Vista: Life and Work on a Puerto Rican Hacienda, 1833-1904by Guillermo Baralt
Synopses & Reviews
This book traces the history of Buena Vista, an estate located in the southern foothills of Puerto Rico's central mountain range. Now a popular living history museum, Buena Vista flourished in the nineteenth century—first as a farm that furnished food for the city of Ponce and surrounding plantations, later as a producer of corn and cornmeal ground at the estate's water-powered mill, and finally as a coffee plantation.
Drawing on an impressive range of primary sources, Guillermo Baralt portrays the estate's history as a series of overlapping changes: from slavery to salaried labor, from primitive processing techniques to the latest in mill technology, from Spanish rule to American control, and from hard-scrabble country life to life as part of the world marketplace. Richly illustrated and written in a lively narrative style, Buena Vista paints a compelling portrait of an era, an island, a family, and an estate, bringing a period in Caribbean history to vivid life.
A revealing story of agricultural modernization.
Choice Buena Vista can be used productively by both students and specialists alike.
The Americas [A]ny visitor to Puerto Rico should read [this book] before making an obligatory visit to the island•s Living Museum of Art and Science.
Planeta.com Thanks to this wonderful English translation, a contemporary Caribbean classic is now accessible to a wider readership.
Francisco A. Scarano, University of Wisconsin-Madison
This translation of a Caribbean classic vividly captures the full history of Buena Vista, the 19th-century Puerto Rican estate that is now a popular living history museum.
About the Author
Guillermo A. Baralt is professor of history at the University of Puerto Rico.Andrew Hurley is professor of English at the University of Puerto Rico.
Table of Contents
Foreword to the English Translation, by Teresita Martínez Vergne
Table of Weights and Measures
Chapter 1. Ponce in the First Half of the Nineteenth Century
Chapter 2. The Founding of Buena Vista: From Farm to Cornmeal Factory
Chapter 3. The Flour and Cornmeal Market in Ponce
Chapter 4. Buena Vista: A Village of Slaves, 1833-1873
Chapter 5. Coffee at Buena Vista: The Farm Becomes a Coffee Plantation, 1868-1898
Chapter 6. Hired Workers, 1873-1898
Chapter 7. Buena Vista after the U.S. Invasion, 1898-1904
Chapter 8. Conclusions
Chronology of Hacienda Buena Vista
Inventory of Buena Vista, 1863
1.1. Population of Ponce, 1846
1.2. Institutional and Administrative History of the Municipality of Ponce, 1800-1877
2.1. Commercial Crops, Buena Vista
2.2. Inventory of Livestock, Buena Vista, 1846
3.1. Main Crops in Ponce, 1864
3.2. Corn Prices, Buena Vista, 1868
3.3. Corn Purchases per Five-Year Period, 1850-1869
3.4. Buena Vista's Yearly Purchases of Corn, 1858-1871
3.5. Cornmeal Production at Buena Vista, 1850-1861
3.6. Buyers of Buena Vista Cornmeal, 1854
3.7. Income from Mill, 1850-1870
4.1. Number of Slaves at Buena Vista, 1846-1872
4.2. List of Slaves at Buena Vista, 1858
4.3. Place of Birth of Buena Vista Slaves
4.4. Deaths Caused by Cholera in Ponce, 1855-1856
4.5. Slave Deaths in Ponce, December 1855-November 1856
4.6. Runaway Slaves in Ponce, 1853-1865
5.1. Coffee Production in Puerto Rico, 1864-1896
5.2. Coffee Production in Ponce, by Barrio, 1863
5.3. Main Coffee-Producing Municipalities in Puerto Rico, 1897
5.4. Coffee Prices, 1839-1894
5.5. Coffee Exports, by Port, 1888
5.6. Losses at Buena Vista from Hurricane San Narciso, 1867
5.7. Replanting of Coffee Trees on Buena Vista, 1886
5.8. Buena Vista Coffee Production, 1861-1897
6.1. Jobs Done by Hired Workers at Buena Vista, 1873-1904
6.2. Coffee Pickers at Buena Vista, 1874
6.3. Coffee Pickers at Buena Vista, 1890
6.4. Payment to Coffee Pickers per Almud of Coffee Picked at Buena Vista, 1874-1894
6.5. Overseers at Buena Vista, 1872-1878
6.6. Salaries at Buena Vista for All Hired Workers (approximately 10), 1875
7.1. Coffee Production, Buena Vista, 1893-1900
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