FACES NEW AND OLD THE POPULATION 1765-1873
OVERVIEW • BETWEEN 1765-1863 PR’S POPULATION ICREASED SIXFOLD • IN THE FIRST HALF OF THE EIGHTEENTH CENTURY HIGHER BIRTHS RATES WERE THE MAIN CAUSE. • SECOND HALF BOOM OF POPULATION WAS DUE TO FOREIGNORS BOTH FORCED AND VOLUNTARY, DESPITE HIGHER LOCAL MORTALITY RATES ON THE ISLAND. (HARSH CONDITIONS)
HIGH BIRTH RATE/HIGH MORTALITY RATE • DURING THIS PERIOD THE TRANSITION OF AGRICULTURE ( SUGAR AND COFFEE) IS MARKED BY BREAK UP OF FAMILIES.( RISING NUMBER OF CHILDREN BORN OUT OF WEDLOCK IS AN INDICATON OF THIS.)
CONTINUED. • AT THE SAME TIME AFRICAN AMERICAN SLAVES WERE AMONG THOSE WITH HIGHER MORTALITY RATES GIVEN THE HARSH CONDITION OF THEIR LIVES. • THE CONDITIONS IN WHICH SLAVES AND PEASANTS LIVED CAUSED OUT BREAK OF DISEASES INLCUDING YELOW FEVER AND SMALLPOX. ( EVEN HIGHER MORTALITY RATE IN SUMMER MONTHS)
1804, DIFFICULT YEAR FOR MAYAGUEZ • Mayaguez, 8th largest number municipality in PR. • Originally founded as “ Nuestra Senora de la Candelaria”. • Tales of horror pertaining to deaths due to smallpox. ( A man who became “eaten alive” by the smallpox.)
Forced And voluntary Immigrants. • Thousands of immigrants came to PR from Africa, Europe, and America for different reasons between 1765 and 1823. • Some wanted to come freely, others forced (slaves), convicts, refugees, and many for political reasons ( The Irish, servants from Canary Islands, Costa Firme (Venezuela).
Continued. • Living in PR was not easy at this time. • Many died from diseases contracted upon arrival. • However, others survived these harsh new conditions to go on and play significant roles in the history of Puerto Rico.
Convict contribution to island • Between 1763 and 1783, many convict immigrants from Spain and Spanish America were responsible for the fortification of San Juan. • The Crown ordered this forced labor including convicts to row in the galleys of the Mediterranean fleet
The Irish • Not a very large population of Irishmen at the time in Puerto Rico. • Most of the Irish who came to Puerto Rico were runaway indentured servants of British colonies. • Formed close circle of Hacendados and were responsible for sugar boom in the area of Rio Piedras, Monacillos, Pueblo Viejo, and Puerto Nuevo.
Africans • Hacendados, land owners. • Africans by far the most important for economic growth and the national culture of the island. • Africans present since early colonization at one point made up majority of population on PR. ( Eventually began to intermarry with Spaniards and Amerindians.)
Continued. • An estimated 15, 000 Africans arrived to the island between 1774 and 1807 • Not necessarily Africans from West Africa. • More Africans from internal areas of Africa.
French and Dominicans • Haitian revolution draws many French and Dominicans to flee Santo Domingo to west part of PR. • This helps development of western part of island greatly, due to the expertise of French coffee growers and also the many skilled Dominican professionals ( doctors, teachers, and officials.) They blended well into the western island society.
Napoleanic Post War Era • Many soldiers in Europe who had finish serving in the war were looking for a new beginning. • Immigrants were drawn to PR from France, the U.K., the Netherlands, Germany and Italy. • Not all migration expected. ( people who wanted to invest in economy and who accepted the laws of the island were accepted.)
Settlement of Interior • Like most places that are colonized we see that in PR that while the city is open to immigration, this causes people to move inland I search of better agricultural opportunity. • 1765- 1824 we see rises in population of inland settlements. (Utuado, Pepino, Caguas, Las piedras.)
continued • The distribution of the former hatos and the distribution of untitled land made large quantities of cheap land available. • In 1819, Junta de TerrenosBaldios began granting plots and titles for uncultivated lands. • However, a lot of spontaneous squatting where families would find a piece of land. Then they would clear it burn it and begin to raise cattle or chickens.
Important Points • It is important to understand the impact Africans had on the island of PR. They played a key role in economic growth. • It is important to understand the diversity of the island pertaining to the different groups that migrated to the island at this point in history.