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Sugar and Sugarcane: Historical Resources for a Sweet Industry

Cuba, Puerto Rico, & the Caribbean

West Indies: manufacture of sugar. 1667. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.

Titles in this section primarily cover activities in Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Caribbean (Saint-Domingue and Jamaica). However, some coverage of activities in these places can also be found in the more general section of this guide as books and journals are often much broader in their coverage. There are also local associations like the Association of Sugar Producers of Puerto Rico, the Sugar Association of the Caribbean, and the West Indies Sugar Technologists that publish annual reports, meeting notes, statistical compilations, and other related material. Searching on important companies like the Puerto Rican company Central Aguirre Sugar Co. and the South Porto Rico Sugar Company (SPRSC) may also be helpful.

Two British interests are worth mentioning as the play a large part in the Caribbean trade - the West India Interest which lobbied on behalf of the Caribbean sugar trade in Britain during the late eighteenth century and the London Society of West India Planters and Merchants in London was established to represent the views of the British West Indian plantocracy.

When doing research on this industry historically and particularly when using digitized sources of period material, it is import to search the early spelling “Porto Rico.”

These are not all the materials devoted specifically to Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Caribbean you can find others—particularly those in Spanish—by searching our catalog using the following Library of Congress Subject Heading. Additional materials that are more general or cover Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the as part of the whole topic, can be found by searching in the catalog using the subject headings found within this guide.

Selected Books and Journals

The following materials link to fuller bibliographic information in the Library of Congress Online Catalog. Links to digital content are provided when available. Additional citations may also be found in the database Oxford Bibliographies. This includes: "Sugar in the Atlantic World" by Justin Roberts, "Cuba" by Elena A. Schneider, "Barbados in the Atlantic World" by Justin Roberts, "Jamaica in the Atlantic World to 1838" by James Robertson, "Havana in the Atlantic World" by Evelyn Jennings, etc.