Don Francisco E. Fonseca was born in 1869 or 1870 (the documents differ) in Manzanillo, Cuba, and established a factory and his own cigar brand in Havana in 1892, registering the brand bearing his name in 1907. Fonseca and his wife Teresa Boetticher de Fonseca immigrated to New York and by 1903, Fonseca was operating a factory at 169 Front Street. He became an American citizen in 1895 and by 1905 the registry of cigar factories lists F.E. Fonseca & Co. in a new location: 129 Duane Street (court documents specify 148-150-152 Duane Street, in Tribeca). In New York, at his home at 48 West 73rd St., he and Teresa raised four children – three of whom he named Francisco. Fonseca made frequent trips to Cuba, where he supervised “F.E. Fonseca. Fábrica de Tabacos y Cigarros”. His business stationery reflects his double loyalty, depicting both the Statue of Liberty and the Morro, Havana.
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