Cuba

While the island’s dramatic connection to the Bay of Pigs invasion is all but unknown to the outside world, it is part of local lore.

The Florida Resort That Played an Unlikely Role in the Bay of Pigs Fiasco

Sixty years ago, the CIA-backed invasion of Cuba failed disastrously. It all began, here, on Useppa Island

Alice Neel, Jackie Curtis and Ritta Redd, 1970

How Alice Neel's Revolutionary Portraits Put People First

A new show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art features 100 of the American artist's paintings, drawings and watercolors

In the background, a photograph taken by an American U-2 spy plane over Cuba on October 14, 1962, shows a secret deployment of Soviet nuclear-armed ballistic missiles. Right, Juanita Moody, head of the National Security Agency’s Cuba desk.

Women Who Shaped History

The Once-Classified Tale of Juanita Moody: The Woman Who Helped Avert a Nuclear War

America’s bold response to the Soviet Union depended on an unknown spy agency operative whose story can at last be told

Paredon Records produced music that was literally revolutionary.

From the 'Sidedoor' Podcast: How a Woman-Led Record Label Spread Songs of Protest and Revolution

This episode from the sixth season of the Smithsonian's "Sidedoor" podcast delves into the history of Barbara Dane's revolutionary Paredon Records

A KGB spy pistol used by female operatives and designed to look like a tube of lipstick

You Could Own a Lipstick Gun, a Poison-Tipped Umbrella and Other KGB Spy Tools

Next February, Julien's Auctions will sell some 3,000 items from the shuttered KGB Espionage Museum's collection

Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev, left, and Cuban President Fidel Castro, center, are seen outside the Hotel Theresa in the Harlem neighborhood of New York.

Fidel Castro Stayed in Harlem 60 Years Ago to Highlight Racial Injustice in the U.S.

The Cuban revolutionary shined a light on the stark economic disparities in America, much to the chagrin of the U.S. government

La Bodeguita del Medio, where Hemingway preferred to drink his mojitos.

Follow Ernest Hemingway’s Footsteps Through Havana

Sixty-five years after nabbing a Nobel, many of Papa Hemingway’s favorite haunts are still open to the public

Cine Lido, Havana

These Photographs Capture Cuba’s Fading Cinema Culture

In a new book, photographer Carolina Sandretto focuses on a piece of the island’s heritage that is often overlooked

Finca Vigía photographed in March 1997.

New Conservation Center to Preserve Hemingway’s Legacy in Cuba

The facility is located at Finca Vigía, the property where Hemingway lived for more than two decades and where he wrote some of his most lauded books

President Kennedy declassified images like this one that showed medium-range ballistic missile launch sites in the Cuban countryside

Cool Finds

How CIA-Backed Spies Detected Soviet Nukes First During Cuban Missile Crisis

A report from <i>Yahoo News</i> lays out how a network of agents detected Soviet operations on the island before a U-2 spy plane snapped the famous photos

Ed Sullivan interviews Fidel Castro in January 1959, shortly after dictator Fulgencio Batista had fled the country.

Tony Perrottet's Cuba

When Fidel Castro Charmed the United States

Sixty years ago this month, the romantic victory of the young Cuban revolutionaries amazed the world—and led to a surreal evening on “The Ed Sullivan Show”

Genetic revelations are shifting the story of the Cuban crocodile and raising questions about the right way to conserve it.

The Quest to Preserve the Last of Castro's Crocodiles

Breeders are trying to save a 'pure' Cuban crocodile—but out in the wild, divisions between species are increasingly murky

Formerly an arcade and office building, dating to 1917, the structure underwent a city-led restoration and reopened last year as the Hotel Manzana Kempinski.

Tony Perrottet's Cuba

The Man Who Saved Havana

As its greatest old buildings were falling down, a fearless historian named Eusebio Leal remade the city into a stunning world destination

The Ten Best Travel Books of 2017

These reads will remedy even the direst cases of wanderlust

Kiddie Pool

These Photographs Capture the Complexities of Life at Guantánamo

In a new book, photographer Debi Cornwall casts the naval base as "Camp America"

President Kennedy meets with Gen. Curtis LeMay and the pilots who discovered the Cuban missiles.

JFK Faked a Cold to Get Back to Washington During the Cuban Missile Crisis

The president was in Chicago when he got the news that he needed to make a decision

Hemingway in Cuba.

How Mary Hemingway and JFK Got Ernest Hemingway’s Legacy Out of Cuba

1961, the year Hemingway died, was a complicated year for U.S.-Cuba relations

Don't look for official memorials to the dead dictator—there won't be any.

Trending Today

Why There Won’t Be Any Monuments to Fidel Castro in Cuba

El Comandante had one last dictate

Smithsonian Journeys Travel Quarterly: Cuba

A Photojournalist Captures Dramatic Portraits of Dancers in the Streets of Cuba

For Gabriel Davalos, photography is about storytelling

Smithsonian Journeys Travel Quarterly: Cuba

Lime Marinade, Cohiba Cigar Cases and Other Unique Gifts You Can Buy in Cuba

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