The Havana Archive
Havana: once upon a time the playground of the rich and famous, where Cuban rum flowed in legendary nightclubs, luxury hotels, and casinos, as well as a vital hub for drug running and money laundering. This fascinating book, drawn from an archive of press photographs and ephemera thought to have been the property of Capone era Chicago gangster and bookie Grover Dullard, captures the essence of Havana's heyday with a wealth of evocative detail. Photographer Basil Hyman discovered this trove of Cuban treasures in Paris, and it led him on a voyage of discovery to Havana's rich past. Many celebrities were drawn to Havana's louche underworld of vice, fast cars and mambo music. However, it all came to an end in the late 1950s, with the downfall of the corrupt government and the arrival of Fidel Castro and the Revolution. Hyman's quest to discover the identity of the people in his archive has resulted in this intriguing book. Much has been published about this period in Havana, but this book is different because of its unique visual approach. Like the pieces of a jigsaw, the archive builds a picture of the glamour and the decadence of Havana's turbulent past in a mixture of photographs and memorabilia; postcards, menus, cocktail napkins, matchbooks, transporting the reader back to a long lost world.
Fascinating picture of long ago Havana: nightclubs, casinos, hotels and gangsters; Includes facsimile ephemera; Evokes nostalgia for a world of rum, women and mambo dancers; Illustrations are drawn from a recently discovered trove of photographs and ephemera; Cuba is once again drawing American tourists; British tourists have always gone there.