La Palina Illumination Cigars1 Total
When cigar shops and aficionados detail the history of cigars, they often romanticize Cuban manufacturers and tobacco, and the so-called "Golden Age" of cigars throughout the late-19th and early- and mid-20th centuries. However, the Caribbean wasn't the only fertile ground for cigar making: Entrepreneurs also established factories as far north as Connecticut and northwest to the Great Lakes, specifically Chicago — home to over 300 cigar factories in the 1890s.One of these Windy City manufacturers was Congress Cigar Company, founded in 1896, and their debut cigar, La Palina, was named in honor of founder and Ukrainian émigré Samuel Paley's wife. At its height, Congress Cigar Co. rolled one million cigars per day, but the Great Depression doomed the factory, like so many other businesses, and the company folded — lost to time if not for the continued success of the Paley family.
Samuel's son William Paley had gained notoriety in radio, directing the recently established Columbia Broadcasting System — CBS — and before its closure, the Congress Cigar Co. factory invested substantially in the young network. William would grow to become an industry titan, marrying Vogue fashion-editor and socialite Barbara "Babe" Cushing, and their son Bill is responsible for La Palina's resurrection in 2010, reestablishing the Paley family's historic cigar-making roots.
Committed to the same excellence as his grandfather and inspired by his parents' attention to style, Bill Paley revived La Palina as a "personal, signature luxury cigar." Custom-sourcing tobaccos and partnering with renowned factories in Honduras, Nicaragua, the Dominican Republic, and Miami, USA, La Palina offers a curated portfolio of premium cigars — available here at Smokingpipes.