Cuzco, Peru, 1974, photographed by Harry Callahan. (Harvard Library)

April 17

  • 1523The forces of the indigenous chief Diriangén confront the men of Spanish conquistador Gil González Dávila in what is now Nicaragua.
  • 1695: Poet Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz dies in Mexico City at age 43.
  • 1797: Battle of San Juan: British Lieutenant General Ralph Abercromby leads an invasion of the island of Puerto Rico. It is eventually repelled by the forces of Captain General Ramón de Castro, the island’s colonial governor.
  • 1919: Singer Chavela Vargas is born in Costa Rica.
  • 1961: The Bay of Pigs invasion begins in Cuba.
  • 2008: Martinican writer and politician Aimé Césaire dies at age 94.

(Reuters) - Puerto Rican singer José Luis “Cheo” Feliciano, who performed with some of salsa’s top stars, was killed in a car crash in San Juan early Thursday morning, police said.

He was 78.

Puerto Rico Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla declared three days of mourning for the widely admired salsero.

Gabriel García Márquez, the Colombian novelist whose “One Hundred Years of Solitude” established him as a giant of 20th-century literature, died on Thursday at his home in Mexico City. He was 87.

His death was confirmed by Cristóbal Pera, his former editor at Random House.

Mr. García Márquez, who received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1982, wrote fiction rooted in a mythical Latin American landscape of his own creation, but his appeal was universal. His books were translated into dozens of languages. He was among a select roster of canonical writers — Dickens, Tolstoy and Hemingway among them — who were embraced both by critics and by a mass audience.

“Each new work of his is received by expectant critics and readers as an event of world importance,” the Swedish Academy of Letters said in awarding him the Nobel.


Today in History, April 10th, 1919

The famous Mexican revolutionary leader Emiliano Zapata is ambushed and killed by government forces in Morelos.

Original theatrical trailer for Juarez! (1939), an American film dramatizing the reign of Emperor Maximiliano I over Mexico and Benito Juárez’ fight to reestablish a democratic government in the country. 

April 10

  • 1864: Archduke Maximilian of Austria is proclaimed Emperor of Mexico in Trieste. He would arrive in Mexico the following month.
  • 1919: Mexican revolutionary Emiliano Zapata is killed in the state of Morelos.
  • 1930: Mexican-American labor leader and United Fruit Workers co-founder Dolores Huerta is born in Dawson, New Mexico.

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — Authorities in Puerto Rico announced Wednesday they are investigating why a glowing bay that attracts thousands of tourists a year has grown dark in recent weeks.

The popular Mosquito Bay on the island of Vieques is considered one of Puerto Rico’s top attractions, and government officials say they are worried about the bay’s loss of bioluminescence.

Department of Natural Resources Secretary Carmen Guerrero said she is reaching out to local and international scientists to launch an investigation.

"Puerto Rico is one of the few places in the world that has bioluminescent bodies of water," she said.

The bay’s waters glow thanks to microscopic plankton known as dinoflagellates that emit a blue-green light through a chemical reaction when disturbed. The bay went dark in early January because of rough seas, but Guerrero said it is unclear why the glow diminished again in recent weeks.

April 9

  • 1914: Tampico Incident: During the Mexican Revolution, the Mexican government arrests a group of American soldiers in the oil-rich town of Tampico, Tamaulipas. The incident leads to a six month-long occupation of the port of Veracruz by the United States military. 
  • 1948: Colombian politician Jorge Eliécer Gaitán is assassinated in Bogotá, setting off the group of riots known as the Bogotazo.
  • 1952: In Bolivia, a coup by the Movimiento Nacionalista Revolucionario topples the country’s military government, starting a period of agrarian reform and universal suffrage  
  • 1963: Argentine artist Xul Solar (Oscar Agustín Alejandro Schulz Solari) dies at age 75.

Haitian writer and political activist Jacques Roumain (right) with Cuban poet Nicolás Guillén (left), 1942. (Image Credit)


Haitian writer and political activist Jacques Roumain (right) with Cuban poet Nicolás Guillén (left), 1942. (Image Credit)


María Félix 8 de abril, 1914 - 8 de abril, 2002

 Una mujer original no es aquella que no imita a nadie, sino aquella a la que nadie puede imitar. 

100 years since this beautiful lady was born

April 8

  • 1827: Puerto Rican nationalist Ramón Emeterio Betances, instigator of the Grito de Lares revolt, is born in Cabo Rojo when the island is still under colonial Spanish rule.
  • 1914: Mexican actress María Félix is born in Álamos, Sonora.
  • 1934: Chicano attorney and writer Oscar Zeta Acosta, author of Autobiography of a Brown Buffalo and The Revolt of the Cockroach People, is born in El Paso, Texas.
  • 2002: Mexican actress María Félix dies in Mexico City at age 88.


NPR covers all 2,428 miles of the US-Mexico border, so you don’t have to.

The results are beautiful.


"What was transformative was being at the inauguration, reading my poem, and realizing that the quest for home and identity had always been part of my work, but that I’d been home all along. I understood that my story, my mother’s story, the story of those hundreds of thousands of people up there, is America. I had the dawning of a new connection with America, a new love affair. Not a blind patriotism, but just an understanding that it is part of who I am."

Building in Verse, Parul Kapur Hinzen interviews Richard Blanco - Guernica / A Magazine of Art & Politics


ECUADOR, Baños : The Tungurahua volcano erupting is seen from Banos, Ecuador on April 4, 2014. The Tungurahua volcano, which has been in eruption since 1999, experienced a heightening of its seismic activity. AFP PHOTO / ANDRES REYES