Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Cuba, New York

Location:   Cuba, New York
Year:   1822

The Township and Village of Cuba lie in southwest-central New York State. Cuba was once part of the Township of Friendship, New York (from whence comes Friendship Cottage Cheese), and Cuba is still an important dairying town. 

Some local historians assert that Cuba was named for an ancient Roman goddess. Others claim that it was named for the island of Cuba. This may be a distinction without a difference, as Cuba the island was named for a town in Iberia which was named for the Roman goddess. The area has several towns with Spanish names, such as Salamanca, Mexico, and Bolivar. At the time these towns were founded, the Latin American nations were establishing their independence from Spain, and local residents honored their wish for liberty by adopting these names.

By far the most famous person from Cuba is Charles Ingalls, "Pa" in the Little House on the Prairie series, who was born in Cuba in 1836. His grandmother was Margaret Delano, a shared ancestor of New York-born President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. 

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