Generally the Spanish youth attends the public schools, but those of
the more religious families are placed in parochial institutions. Of the poorer
classes, the majority, few advance beyond the eighth grade, and many quit
school at the fourth or fifth grades. This is due to economic conditions rather
than to lack of ambition. The children of the more prosperous go through high
school and a large number receive college educations. Some of the
outstanding professional men of Tampa are of Latin birth.
The lot of the uneducated Spaniard is one of toil and meager wages.
Cigar-factory employees go to work each morning without any breakfast except
a cup of coffee, and perhaps a piece of bread. About 10 o'clock factories allow
a half-hour intermission, when all the employees have coffee and rolls. For
years the factories permitted professional readers or lectors to read to employees
at work, but this custom was abolished in 1932, because it is said, the lectors
read so much literature of a radical nature that they kept the factories on the
verge of strike most of the time.
Virtually all customs of the Spanish are also typical of the Cubans,
except that the latter are less bound by traditions of Spain, and their physical
and cultural characteristics have been influenced by their mixed ancestry.
Most Cubans are descendants of the Spanish inhabitants of Cuba, others are
Negroes, some Creoles, and others of various blood blends. The complexity
of racial lines in the Cuban is better realized when it is considered that racial
distinctions are not closely drawn.