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Atlanta Georgian. [volume] (Atlanta, Ga.) 1912-1939, January 18, 1914, ATLANTA, Image 53

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Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn89053729/1914-01-18/ed-3/seq-53/

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T^injMtopThr'VOODOO 4 Human Sacrifices InCuta
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Picturesque Huts of the Poor White Natives of Cuba, Whose Chidren Are Stolen by the Negroes for Human Sacrifice.
Two Voodoo Priests Caught After Weird Ceremonials
and the Murder of a Little White Girl
THE police authorities of Cuba
are greatly pleased with the
capture of two Voodoo priests,
Jose de la Cruz and Eugenio Carde
nas. If these two negroes can be
■cbnvicted and executed for the hu
man sacrifice of Engenia Hernandez,
the six-year-old white girl, it is
hoped that it will be the entering
wedge in breaking up the wicked
Voodoo ceremonials which are prac
ised all over the island.
I' has always been extremely dif
ficult to prove a case of religious
tnurder. because the negroes are in
•'real fear of revealing what goes
on during the rites. White children
disappear with distressing ■ fre
quency. and now and then the muti
lated body of a little white girl is
found, after the Voodoo ceremonials
re over.
•il the cr.se of the two Voodoo
; rle '-' there seems to be sufficient
, vjn > (. p, secure a conviction. It
.as on the night of November 25
that Cruz anil Cardenas took little
Eugenia. It is claimed that the nc
;;roes obtained permission of the
parents of the child to draw a small
amount of blood from the child’s
body, for the purpose of curing a
sick woman named Salvadora Aro
jana. They went through the usual
weird ceremonies and incantations,
in the presence of the parents, pre
paratory to taking the blood.
The little girl was seized, but man
aged to free herself and rau to her
mother, clinging to her skirts. This
action was repeated by the child each
time she saw the knife in the “wiz
ard's" hands. This interference with
their ceremonials prompted the ne
groes to try to start the child’s blood
running by an explosion of powder,
but the explosion proved so violent
that it killed the child.
This explanation is discredited by
the police authorities, who expect to
show that little Eugenia sas bled to
death purposely.
The practise of voodooism in the
Western Hemisphere is some 250
years old. It was brought, here with
the first cargo of human flesh from
Darkest Africa, which landed on the
electric current is being
i used with great success for
the treatment of many dis
eases of horses, cats, dogs and other
animals.” says Dr. W. P. Jenkins, the
(most fashionable animal doctor in
N’ew York.
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A Rheumatic Horae Getting an Electric and Vapor Bath.
shores of Cuba in the middle of the
seventeenth century.
From the start the illiterate Span
iard and the illiterate white Cuban
became fascinated by the wonderful
doings of the African fanatics, and
to-day voodooism is almost as preva
lent among the West Indian whites
as it is among the negroes. Indeed,
the white fanatic is said to be even
more hopeless than his negro co
During the years the revolting be
lief has flourished in the Western
continent it has undergone many
superficial changes, although the
foundation of the sacrifice has re
mained unchanged. Many sects
have developed, and to one of these
called the “Bembe,” the two pris
oners belonged.
The sect of the “Bembe” makes a
strong point of pyrotechnic displays
at its ceremonials, and is the lead
ing “curative” faction of the wor
ship. That is. where other sects
specialize on the saitisfaction of re
venge. of hatred, unsatisfied love
and so on, the “Bembe” are the
medicine men of voodoo.
The temple and abode of Jose,
where the child was killed, is a long,
narrow, low roofed hut on the out
skirts of the town. Religious meet
ings were regularly held there twice
a week. Both Jose and Cardenas
are full blooded negroes, as all the
priests of voodoo must be.
What actually occurred at this
meeting is involved in a mass of con
tradictory stories, but the following
authoritative account furnished by a
well-informed Cuban of the usual pro
gramme followed at orgies of this
kind is enlightening:
“It is a fact well known to every
Cuban and to everyone who has re
sided in the island for any length of
time," he declared, “that these fan
atic orgies take place right in the
heart of the city of Havana.
"At these meetings ‘el baile del
Sante,’ or the dance of the Saint, is
a regular feature.
“The b'gh priest sits on his throne,
n certain prayer is offered, and, at a
nod of his head, the drums begin to
Using Electrical Treatment for Sick and Rheumatic Dogs, Cats and Horses
‘‘The current is particularly useful
in curing lameness, rheumatism, dis
eases of the nerves and the digestive
organs. Some very ingenious appli
ances have been devised for admin
istering the current safely and ef
fectively, a® may be seen from the
accompanying illustrations.
beat He picks out three or four
girls—the best-looking ones, as a
“These girls strip to the waist, pick
up their skirts and tie them in a
manner that leaves them bare thigh
and leg, and the dance is on. They
persipire, they snort, the stamping of
their feet goes on with ever increas
ing fury; the priest hits them now
and then with the sacred stick, to
urge them on; he watches them with
a keen eye, notices that one of them
is near the point of exhaustion and
then gives the word that ‘the saint’
is coming.
“The ring around the dancers
widens. Away is made open for the
priest to come to the door and wel
come the saint; the exhausted
dancer falls in a fit. The priest
rushes to her side and carries her
tenderly to an inner room fitted with
an altar. She is now in a trance and
‘possessed’ of ‘the saint.’
“The faithful come in one by one
and state their cases; the priest in
terprets her sighs and moans as
answers. The sick get his prescrip
tion, the jealous husband learns
whether he is right or wrong in his
suspicions, the lovesick obtains a
recipe for the attainment of his ends.
Little by little consciousness comes
back, the trance is over, the saint is
gone and the orgies are on.
“That little Maria was nude at the
time of the explosion is established
not only by Jose’s admission, hut by
the fact that her clothing was found
“Jose declared that she was dancing
nude in accordance with the rules of
the ritual ceremony, but he claims
that the girl’s death was due en
tirely to the explosion which was
caused by the ignition of a bottle of
alcohol. Against this, however, it
is pointed out that the injuries sus
tained by the others were of the
most superficial character.
"Whether the explosion was the
real cause of the child’s death, as
the voodoo priest said, or whether
the incision went too far and the
frightened priest decided to cover the
whole thing by the explosion, which
“Various animals behave very dif
ferently when subjected to the cur
rent. One horse will kick violently
when he feels the current. Another
will submit to it with perfect calm
ness. As a rule it is wise to enclose
a horse in a strongly built stall, with
four sides, before giving him treat
ment, as a wild horse is like
g| ly to cause serious trouble.
gg] ‘"rhe dog will usually sub
fl mit to a light current very
fl easily and will sometimes
fl show pleasure in the treat
fl ment.
fl “In order to treat a cat
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A Rheumatic Dog Receiving High Frequency Currents of Healing Electrictiy.
Copyright, 1914. by the Htar Company. Great Britain Rights Reserved
Cuban Negro Children. These Children Are Not Sacrificed.
It Is the Blood of the White Children Which Is Valued for
Religious Ceremonials and for the Cure of the Sick.
d I & lUi
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the police say was undoubtedly
caused by gunpowder and not alco
hol, is still a mystery."
Those who are familiar with the
orgies committed in the practise of
voodooism declare, however, that if
the little girl was really killed by the
explosion, whether it was of gun-
electrically ft is always neoeswiry to
secure the animal firmly, as it is cer
tain to rebel against treatment. The
cat will never voluntarily submit to
any constraint, by man.
“The faradic and galvanic currents
are both used to test the eensitive
ness of the skin and to find out
whether there is any hidden injury to
nerves or muscles. The involuntary
muscular response to the current
will show whether the muscles work
together properly. This is very use
ful with horses, for they are often
permanently crippled if they are
powder, as the police cflaim, or of
alcohol, as the fanatics contend, she
escaped a death ten times worse
than what she underwent.
As already stated, both the word
"Voodoo,” and the religion, are of
West African origin. The word be
longs to the Ewe tongue, a language
worked when one muscle is out of
"The faradic current is most valu
able in treating lameness and troubles
es the external nerves and organs.
The galvanic current is more em
ployed for the treatment of the ex
ternal nerves and muscles. The
latter form of current is also
used in the treatment of abscess * -
and catarrhal affections.
“The commonest troubles in
horses treated by electricity
are lameness of the hips, the
back and the shoulders. These
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A Voodoo Taboo House in Africa. It Is from Africa That tha
Religion of Voodooism Came Which Is Now Practiced in Cuba
spoken on the slave coast, in the
district between the River Volta,
on the West, and the kingdom of
Porto Novo, on the East.
The original spelling: Is “Vodu."
It is derived from the verb “vo,”
to fear, or to inspire fear. The na
tives do not apply the name to any
special god, but to all fear-inspiring
supernatural manifestations The
troubles often disappear as if by
magic under the application of an
induction current. Very often one ap
plication of the current is sufficient
to cure a trouble that has made the
poor horse unfit for work. The ani
mals respond to this treatment much
more readily than human beings.
rWw' , Wgoß Ha
A Cat Being Treated to a Healing Current After an Operation.
practise of voodooism. however,
concentrates the fearsome attri
butes in a snake —the python. The
cult inaugurated a sort of priesthood
—n priest ami a priestess for each
community, called papa" and
"mamma” —by means of which the
snake deity could communicate
with its worshippers and demand its
murderous sacrifices.
“Stomach and intestinal troubles of
eats and dogs are frequently cured
with the faradic current. A German
newspaper reports that the favorite
poodle of a Princess was cured of an
intestinal catarrh that had threat
ened his life after three applications
of the current.”

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