Category Archive: Spain in American History

Dec
13

Wikileaks and the Spain-U.S. Alliance

WL_Hour_Glass

Blast you Wikileaks. Just when it appeared Spain and the United States had found a way to maintain a steady and relatively strong alliance, the release by Wikileaks of sensitive U.S. diplomatic cables has revealed an apparent imbalance in the relationship that could cause future problems. In various cables released on Wikileaks.org the U.S. appears …

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Dec
01

America’s first great writer: a “dedicated Hispanophile”

Plaque in the Alhambra commemorating Irving's stay there

Most Americans — and most English-speakers in general I should think – are familiar with Washington Irving’s work. His classic tales “Rip Van Winkle” and “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” have been woven into our cultural fabric. Irving also wrote the satirical A History of New York and spent considerable time in the U.K. where …

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Nov
15

The Spanish Americans: A Snapshot

Spanish Americans

One could take issue with Wikipedia’s definition of Spanish American as represented by the celebrities and historical figures in the photo to the left. Raquel Welch? Her father was Bolivian. I couldn’t resist though. It’s a nice visual aid. We’re going to use a narrower definition of Spaniard: those whose roots trace directly to Spain …

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Nov
08

A Spanish-American Population Boom?

I’m not sure what to make of this. From 2007 to 2008, the population of Spaniards in the U.S. increased by 77%, to 625,562 from 354,019. That’s according to the American Community Survey, which is an annual survey run by the U.S. Census Bureau. It acts as a sort of supplement to the decennial census. …

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Oct
21

“Threads of Memory” offers U.S. history with Spanish twist

1787 map of "Nueva California" and "Antigua California" shows the system of missions founded by Father Fray Junípero Serra.

The folks at the New Mexico History Museum in Santa Fe aren’t letting National Hispanic Heritage Month end, God bless their hearts. On October 17, the museum opened a brand new exhibit that explores the impact Spain had on the development of the United States. “The Thread of Memory: Spain and the United States” (El …

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Oct
14

Extremadura: the land of conquistadors

Statue of Pizarro in his hometown of Trujillo (photo by Cloudsoup)

There’s something about the Spanish region of Extremadura. Something that has led its men to leave its soil and seek adventure and fortune elsewhere. In the 1500s the destination was the so-called New World. And extremeños went in droves. The prevalence of extremeños among the conquistadors is really astounding considering the size of the region …

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Oct
13

Hillary Sends Spain Some Love

Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton

Last week, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton issued a statement to “congratulate” Spain as it celebrates el Día de la Hispanidad, or its National Day, which was yesterday. Not sure what Spain did to be congratulated, but it was a nice note and seemed rather routine. Until I looked for previous statements from her marking …

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Oct
07

America’s First Spainiac?

William Carmichael was a key diplomat for the U.S. during and immediately after the Revolutionary War. He was also, I dare say, one of the first American Spainiacs. Now, I haven’t found much in the way of written evidence of this. But actions speak louder than words. And what actions are more important than marriage …

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Oct
06

Menorcans of Florida: Exciting new information

Last week, I gave a synopsis of the plight of a group of Menorcans who came to Florida as indentured servants in 1768 and ended up settling in St. Augustine. A reader was kind enough to alert me to some great research on those Menorcan immigrants, including a full list of their names and the …

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Sep
29

The Menorcans of Florida and their harrowing saga

Menorca flag courtesy of Joan M. Borràs

Quick quiz: What’s the oldest European settlement in the U.S.? Hint: It’s not Jamestown! The Spanish founded St. Augustine, Florida in 1565, 43 years before Jamestown and 22 years before the settlers at Roanoke disappeared (which the British naturally blamed on the settlers at St. Augustine). But there’s a more obscure piece of trivia contained …

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