Historical Review of the City of Holguin

The City of Holguin was founded in the year 1523 on the lands donated in Cuba by Diego de Velázquez to Captain Francisco Garcia Holguin and a hamlet was established there with the Indians who roamed the surroundings, to which we must add that of the region. Maniabón Indian. But the captain reserved for his residence the one designated by his maternal surname, placing it under the patronage of San Isidoro.

Our Captain Francisco Garcia Holguin married in 1537 and established his home in the north of his jurisdiction, turning the site into the head of his heritage, calling it Holguin (whose meaning, by the way, was in the ancient language: sorcerer or enchanter).

Although Francisco Garcia Holguin gave his name to the site in 1545, it was not until the year 1600 that the Cabildo of Bayamo ordered that its delimitation be established. For this task, the public surveyor, Mr. Joaquín de Vidaburú, was appointed, who established the boundaries in the manner that we will quote below:

«From the Loma de la Concordia on the north coast, eastward to the Lirios River. From here to the source of the Tranquera River in the Biajacas savanna. Continuing to the Guayabal puddle, coasting west, passing through the Batiquirí hill and following the mountain range to Saos de Tomí. from there to the Breñosa hill and from there to the Concordia hill. This demarcation was ratified in 1769.

At the same time, another population center was forming in the Guásimas herd, about twenty kilometers away from the previous one and owned by a granddaughter of Captain Francisco Garcia Holguin. As this town grew more than the previous one, the neighbors managed to have the temple moved to this place in 1700. But he suffered the same fate as his previous ones. Whether for reasons of the terrain or for other reasons, the neighbors decided to move to the Holguin ranch, about twelve kilometers away from the previous one and owned by another granddaughter of Captain Francisco Garcia Holguin.

It was in that place that the City of Holguin and the church had its definitive seat, which was completed on April 3, 1720, under the dedication of San Isidoro, and which was built at his own expense by Regidor D. Diego de Ávila and of the Tower, east temple that was rebuilt of brick and tile in 1730 and completed with its definitive characteristics in 1800.

The families who resided in Managuaco and Guásimas came to meet at this place. In 1726 it already had 60 houses and was declared the head of the jurisdiction, segregated, therefore, from that of Bayamo, to which it belonged at the beginning. It survived until 1815.

The active and enthusiastic spirit of the City of Holguin caused them to submit a request in 1731 for the creation of their City Council, a grant that was not granted to them until twenty years later by Royal Decree of February 19, 1757, by Governor D. Alonso de Arcos y Moreno, at the same time it was declared a city.

The coat of arms (City Shield) was authorized in 1831, 80 years after the City Council was established and requested by the municipal council. All these anniversaries of the civil development of the City of Holguin ran hand in hand with its economic and urban development in all branches.

In the City of Holguin, other churches, the prison, the barracks, the San Juan de Dios hospital, the military hospital, slaughterhouse, squares, a public promenade, a gallery, a theater and a recreational society called the Philharmonic Society were built. This title is in harmony with the Hispanic moral environment of the time of the “morrión” and the first liberal naiveties of the confusing and paradoxical times of Fernando VII.

The rate of growth of the human population in Holguin has been: year 1827, 8,624 inhabitants, including those of several rural hamlets in the region; 4,199 in 1841; 3,065 in 1846; 3,754 in 1852; 3,476 in 1857; 4,954 in 1862 and 855 homes, of which 281 of masonry, 424 of boards and 150 of mud and tile.

The City of Holguin became one of the most prominent cities in Cuba due to its commercial and industrial activity, which increased communications of all kinds that converged and diverged from the city. It had magnificent buildings, parks, theaters, hotels...

Population of the City of Holguin According to the Censuses:


The province of Holguin was created in 1976 with an area of nine thousand 300 square kilometers and 14 municipalities.

That emergence of Holguin as a province gave new dimensions to everyone's efforts for the common well-being.

Holguin, from a backward agricultural region, embarked on the path of development.

Along with the sugar industry, the mechanical and metallurgical mining branches stand out in Holguin, based on the exploitation of the lateritic mineral reserves existing in the northeast of the province of Holguin, one of the largest in Cuba and in the world.

Holguin reserves a high tourist potential, especially in the coastal strip that goes from Gibara to Moa, an area of great natural beauty and tourist and cultural significance in Cuba.

In Holguin, other sectors of the economy and services also have development potential, as a challenge of the people of Holguin for a better future, in search of new and greater triumphs for the benefit of the entire town.