Consists of Santo Domingo

Dominant culture: Spanish

History Edit

This was the first permanent Spanish, and thus European, colony in the New World. Before the Spanish arrived the island of Hispaniola was divided between five Native chiefs and despite several disputes over Spanish leadership of the colony they were eventually defeated. In the early 1500's sugarcane was introduced Santo Domingo and the first African slaves were imported. The colony became relatively rich, but around the 1540's the Caribbean started to get infested with pirates. Spain started to send it's trade back to Europe by large convoys that were heavily guarded. La Habana was selected as the designated stopping point for these convoys, a decision that would devastate Santo Domingo's sugar industry. And when the Spanish captured Panama and started to earn more money by moving trade over the isthmus to Fusang, the decline of Santo Domingo really started. Population stagnated and profits decreased. It came so far that Spain forcibly resettled a lot of the inhabitants coastal towns frequently raided by pirates to the Capital of the colony. This resulted in the death of more than half of these resettled people by famine and diseases. The French took the western part of the colony and Spain eventually ceded it to them in 1697. It was only in the early 1700's, when Spain started to introduce some economic reforms, that Santo Domingo started to recover. New immigration towards the colony was encouraged and the towns that were forcibly emptied a century earlier are being repopulated.

Points of Interest Edit

  • Santo Domingo de Guzmán, capital and largest city of Santo Domingo.
  • Casas Reales, Santo Domingo de Guzmán. Home of the governor and captain general of Santo Domingo as well as the Real Audiencia, which represents the king in his role as maker of laws and dispenser of justice
  • Alcázar de Colón (Columbus Alcazar). Built by Diego Colón, the son of Christopher Columbus when he became viceroy of the Spanish colonies. Because of the decreased importance of Santo Domingo it hasn't been used in decades and is now abandoned and in danger of rotting away.
  • Catedral de Santa María la Menor, home of the archbishop of Santo Domingo. He has the honorary title of Primate of Vespuccia because this was the first diocese in the New World. The remains of Christopher Columbus are housed in the cathedral.
  • Monasterio de San Francisco, Santo Domingo de Guzmán. Home of the Franciscan brothers in Santo Domingo. The remains of conquistador Alonso de Ojeda and Bartholomew Columbus are buried here.
  • Isla Beata. An island on the southern tip of Santo Domingo. The Spanish keep feral cattle here so their ships can resupply. Pirates often prey around this island because of the ships resupplying and there are often skirmishes between them.
  • Azua de Compostela, a city on the southern coast. There's a madman roaming the streets saying that the town will be destroyed on 16 October 1751. There are few that believe him.
  • El Santuario San Dionisio de Higuey, a church in the town of Salvaleón de Higüey that houses a large collection of gold and silver antique items.
  • Boca de Yuma, a city on the eastern coast of Santo Domingo. Its port has been quite important in several battles in the Caribbean. There's a Spanish fort overlooking the bay on a highly defensible spot.
  • El Maniel (Haven). A name given by runaway slaves to the high sierras where they hide from their former masters. There are several small villages here populated by former slaves.
  • Cotuí, an inland city in Santo Domingo. There are several mines here where gold, silver, iron and marble are mined. There are several caves around the city with Native rock-art.
  • El Despoblado, a dry region with very little population. Some people illegally moved here with their cows when the population of the north coast was forcibly moved. There are a few ranches scattered over the area populated by people that don't want to be disturbed.

Notable Inhabitants Edit

  • Juan José Colomo, governor and captain general of Santo Domingo.
  • Ignacio Padilla Estrada, Archbishop of Santo Domingo and primate of Vespuccia. He is also a member of the Inquisition and a fierce supporter of their cause. This is part of the reason he got in power.

Link Sites Edit

  • Santo Domingo de Guzmán
  • Cotuí
  • Isla Beata