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The pride of living in Jobabo
By Juan Soto Cutiño                  Photo: Ernesto Peña

In Jobabo there are beautiful landscapes which harmonize with human works. Tall and prodigally green trees, as well as fertile lands make up the geography of this Southern municipality, which is 38 Km away from the capital city of the province.

Its residents are noble and hard-working people  who toil the land with the same rigor with which they take care of nature, the environment, or the Revolution that set the free forever.

But for a better understanding of  today and yesterday’s reality, it is necessary to deepen into the historical and social roots.


The name Jobabo derives from the aboriginal word jobabol, a place where numerous jobo trees grow.

During the first stage of the colonization, gold mining was the main economic activity. It is said that the first slave rebellion in Cuba took place in Las Vitalinas—a gold mine in the region. In the course of time, the trade of cured meat and precious wood displaced mining.

These lands were the scenarios of many heroic deeds during the 10-year war. Its geographic position, in the midst of Las Tunas, Bayamo, and Manzanillo, turned the region into an obligatory center of operations. Carlos Manuel de Céspedes and Vicente Garcia set their headquarters here. On October 12, 1873, Vicente García defeated the Spaniards when his troops stormed the Fortress of La Zanja.

In the same year the Palo Seco battle took place; it was one of the most transcendental combats waged by Máximo Gómez.

The warrior never thought that that brilliant victory would be eternally remembered by the residents of this municipality.

And even Pedro Figueredo, author of our national anthem, lived in this region where he was taken prisoner by the Spaniards.

But the most significant events that occurred here during the 1895 war, were the battles headed by Antonio Maceo in Guaramanao on November  7 and  8.

Imperialist  intrusion began in 1909 with the construction of the Jobabo Sugar Mill, which had its first production  in 1912.In this first stage the American Ryad Cuba Company appropriated  large extensions of land. It was in Jobabo where the first revolutionaries rose against Batista’s regime, and the horror of the Bloody Easter included this territory Enrique Casals appeared assassinated  on a bridge. On  September 6 and 7, 1958 the troops lead by Ernesto Guevara and Camilo Cienfuegos  crossed the territory.

Two months later Jobabo was definitely set free by the forces under the command of Eduardo (Lalo) Sardiñas.

After the revolutionary triumph many children of this town gave their lives in the struggle against bandits, in the Bay of Pigs, or in other lands of the world. 2 thousand 89 men and women from Jobabo took part in internationalist missions.


Though Jobabo is still in the same place, and such an ancient print as the sugar mill remain there, undoubtedly  the transformations the territory has undergone since 1959, have turned it into prosperous and warm place, almost unknown to the to those who have not come over for over forty years.

The municipality’s population is 50 thousand inhabitants in a territorial extension of 886.62 square kilometers. Jobabo limits to the north with the municipalities of Las Tunas and Guaimaro, to the south with the Guacanayabo Gulf, to the east with Las Tunas and Granma, and to the west with the territories of Colombia and Guaimaro.

The production of vegetable and the raising of cattle are some of the most important economic activities.

For the recreation of the people there is a movie theater with a capacity of a hundred seats, a restaurant-bar, a pizza parlor, a library and a book store, and some other facilities.

There is also a motel and a camping site. But the transformations are better understood if we remember that before 1959, there were only two physicians and three nurses. Nowadays almost  a hundred doctors assist the patients in a hospital, an outpatient department, and 44 family doctor’s offices.

In the field of education the advances are numerous. Today there are 77 elementary schools, two urban junior high schools and two others in the countryside, two polithecnical institutes, four senior high schools, and two day-care centers. 

Also there have been achievements in communications, culture and sports. The baseball player Ermidalio Urrutia and the weight lifter Ernesto Agüero are well-known figures

Housing plans have been carried out. In the last 40 years thousands of comfortable houses have substituted the old huts

This is today’s Jobabo, a place where its residents strive to create a better future.








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