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A Guide to the Cuban-American Land and Lumber Corporation Papers

Finding aid created by Wondy Joseph

University of Florida Smathers Libraries - Special and Area Studies Collections
January 2016


Descriptive Summary

Creator: Cuban-American Land and Lumber Corporation
Title: Cuban-American Land and Lumber Corporation Papers
Dates: 1920-1925
Bulk dates: 1924-1925
Abstract: This collection includes 12 letters and documents (20 folios), a map, and one photograph related to the Cuban-American Land and Lumber Corporation's business in Cuba, specifically the timber and lumber market.
Extent: 0.1 Linear feet. 3 Folders.
Identification: MSS 0349
Language(s): Includes materials written in Spanish and English.
Note: This guide is available in Spanish at http://www.library.ufl.edu/spec/manuscript/guides/callc_es.htm

Biographical/Historical Note

This collection documents the development of U.S. lumber companies in Cuba. The Platt Amendment (1902) after the Spanish American War (1898) gave way to major U.S. investment in the island. By then, the main economic activity was the production of sugar. The exploitation of Cuba's massive forests attracted U.S. investors and the clearing of forests was attractive for the Cuban government because it accelerated sugar production. Public and private railroad companies played an important role in transporting lumber and cane, and they proliferated.

The collection includes information on some of the U.S. business men involved in the lumber business, such as Demostene Leonard Casa (1883-1945), Francis K. Holmested (1878-1952), A. M. Belcher, and Lewis Brown.


Scope and Content

The collection houses 12 letters and documents, a map, and one photograph, all dating from the 1920s. The letters and documents record business transactions related to the Cuban-American Land and Lumber Corporation. One of the documents includes a land survey with a description in Spanish of the topography of the western side of the Zapata peninsula in Cuba. The map depicts the Cuba Railroad, and the photograph shows men working with concrete forms with palm trees in the background.


Arrangement

The collection is arranged in chronological order.


Access or Use Restrictions

Access

This collection is open for research.


Related or Separated Material

Braga Brothers Collection

Business Letters Describing the Financial Market in Cuba


Administrative Information

Alternate Form of Finding Aid

This guide is available in Spanish at http://www.library.ufl.edu/spec/manuscript/guides/callc_es.htm.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Cuban-American Land and Lumber Corporation Papers, Special and Area Studies Collections, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida.

Acquisition Information

The collection was purchased in 2015.


Contents List

Box Folder
11 Two page manuscript document titled "Plano de la Península Occidental de Zapata". 1920s
11 Agreement between Demostene L. Casa and the Cuban-American Land and Lumber Corporation. Notarized by Hattie Stein of Charleston, West Virginia. 1924 September 12
11 Sale contract for 100,000 railway ties; includes specifications and instructions sheet. 1925 January 23
11 Letter written by M. J. Putnam to Alfonzo Benyno of Trinidad, Cuba, introducing Francis Keith Holmested, and also telling Benyno that Holmested will be coming to make payment to him. 1925 June 18
11 Letter written by M. J. Putnam to Carlos Costillo of Trinidad, Cuba, introducing Francis Keith Holmested, secretary, treasurer and general manager of the Cuban-American Land and Lumber Corporation. 1925 June 18
11 Letter written by M. J. Putnam to L. R. Layne of Havana, Cuba, introducing Francis Keith Holmested who, along with other associates, has purchased all of their timber holdings near Trinidad, Cuba. 1925 June 18
11 Letter written by M. J. Putnam to W. R. Harrison of Trinidad, Cuba. Putnam tells Harrison that all of the holdings of the Cuban-American Land and Lumber Corporation have been sold to F. K. Holmested, Brown Lewis, and A. M. Belcher, of Charleston, West Virginia and introduces Holmested to Harrison. 1925 June 18
11 One-page manuscript document, written and signed by Demostene L. Casa and witnessed by Brown Lewis. 1925 August 29
12 Letter written by A. M. Belcher to Keith Brown from the Ritz Hotel in Havana, Cuba. Belcher lets his partner know that he has been busy researching the "lumber situation" in Cuba. undated
12 Letter written by Brown Lewis to Francis Keith Holmested, telling Holmested what he needs to do on his arrival in Cuba. undated
13 Map of Cuba showing the lines of The Cuba Railroad. undated
13 Photograph of men working with concrete beam forms and palm trees in the background. undated

Selected Subjects and Access Terms

Cuba
Cuba Railroad
Lumber trade



For further information, please contact: Special Collections Access Services.

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