In 1492, Columbus made one great discoverie: He was the first who recorded observation of a cigar being smoked. One of the explorer’s officers, Roderigo de Xeres, saw a tribe of Indians in San Salvador smoking large cone-shapes rolls of tobacco.
Spain, where tobacco was first cultivated for its medicinal properties, was the first country to manufacture cigars. Portuguese and Spanish sailors expanded the habit of smoking and transported the plant to the far corners of the earth. In the 1850s, Cuba became the world leader and premier manufacturer of fine cigars. Cuban cigars are "Puros," a Spanish word meaning "pure." Puros means that all of the tobacco used in the cigar (wrapper, binder and filler) comes from the country of origin. Cuba, Mexico, and the Dominican Republic are three countries that produce Puros. Today, premium cigars are hand-rolled in the Caribbean, South America, Central America, the United States, and many other parts of the world. Cigars are made from tobaccos from several countries. It is the combination of tobaccos used from various countries that determines the flavor of the cigar, not the country in which it is rolled. In countries with a tradition of cigar-rolling, rollers produce better-constructed cigars. The Dominican Republic became the number one manufacturer in the booming cigar market of the 1990s. In this country are generations of skilled cigar-rollers and families who have developed the art and science of cigar-growing to its highest level. There are also many Cubans who have resettled in the Dominican Republic and have continued their cigar businesses there.
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History of Cigars
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