Argentine War of Independence
The Argentine War of Independence was fought from 1810 to 1818 by Argentine patriotic forces under Manuel Belgrano, Juan José Castelli and José de San Martín against royalist forces loyal to the Spanish crown. On July 9, 1816, an assembly met in San Miguel de Tucumán, declared full independence with provisions for a national constitution; the territory of modern Argentina was part of the Spanish Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata, with its capital city in Buenos Aires, seat of government of the Spanish viceroy. Modern Uruguay and Bolivia were part of the viceroyalty, began their push for autonomy during the conflict, becoming independent states afterwards; the vast area of the territory and slow communications led most populated areas to become isolated from each other. The wealthiest regions of the viceroyalty were in Upper Peru. Salta and Córdoba had closer ties with Upper Peru than with Buenos Aires. Mendoza in the west had closer ties with the Captaincy General of Chile, although the Andes mountain range was a natural barrier.
Buenos Aires and Montevideo, who had a local rivalry, located in the La Plata Basin, had naval communications allowing them to be more in contact with European ideas and economic advances than the inland populations. Paraguay was isolated from all other regions. In the political structure most authoritative positions were filled by people designated by the Spanish monarchy, most of them Spanish people from Europe known as peninsulares, without strong compromises for American problems or interests; this created a growing rivalry between the Criollos, white people born in Latin America, the peninsulares, Spanish people who arrived from Europe. Despite the fact that all of them were considered Spanish, that there was no legal distinction between Criollos and Peninsulares, most Criollos thought that Peninsulares had undue weight in political matters; the ideas of the American and French Revolutions, the Age of Enlightenment, promoted desires of social change among the criollos. The full prohibition imposed by Spain to trade with other nations was seen as damaging to the viceroyalty's economy.
The population of Buenos Aires was militarized during the British invasions of the Río de la Plata, part of the Anglo-Spanish War. Buenos Aires was captured in 1806, liberated by Santiago de Liniers with forces from Montevideo. Fearing a counter-attack, all the population of Buenos Aires capable of bearing arms was arranged in military bodies, including slaves. A new British attack in 1807 captured Montevideo, but was defeated in Buenos Aires, forced to leave the viceroyalty; the viceroy Rafael de Sobremonte was deposed by the criollos during the conflict, the Regiment of Patricians became a influential force in local politics after the end of the British threat. The transfer of the Portuguese Court to Brazil generated military concern, it was feared that the British would launch a third attack, this time allied with Portugal. However, no military conflict took place, as when the Peninsular War started Britain and Portugal became allies of Spain against France; when the Spanish king Ferdinand VII was captured, his sister Carlota Joaquina sought to rule in the Americas as regent, but nothing came out of it because of the lack of support from both the Spanish Americans and the British.
Javier de Elío created a Junta in Montevideo and Martín de Álzaga sought to make a similar move by organizing a mutiny in Buenos Aires, but the local military forces intervened and thwarted it. Spain appointed a new viceroy, Baltasar Hidalgo de Cisneros, Liniers handed the government to him without resistance, despite the proposals of the military to reject him; the military conflict in Spain worsened by 1810. The city of Seville had been invaded by French armies, which were dominating most of the Iberian Peninsula; the Junta of Seville was disestablished, several members fled to Cádiz, the last portion of Spain still resisting. They established a Council of Regency, with political tendencies closer to absolutism than the former Junta; this began the May Revolution in Buenos Aires, as soon. Several citizens thought that Cisneros, appointed by the disestablished Junta, did not have the right to rule anymore, requested the convening of an open cabildo to discuss the fate of the local government.
The military gave their support to the request. The discussion ruled the removal of viceroy Cisneros and his replacement with a government junta, but the cabildo attempted to keep Cisneros in power by appointing him president of such junta. Further demonstrations ensued, the Junta was forced to resign immediately, it was replaced by the Primera Junta. Buenos Aires requested the other cities in the viceroyalty to acknowledge the new Junta and send deputies; the precise purpose of these deputies, join the Junta or create a congress, was unclear at the time and generated political disputes later. The Junta was resisted by all the main locations around Buenos Aires: Córdoba, Montevideo and the Upper Peru. Santiago de Liniers came out of his retirement in Córdoba and organized an army to capture Buenos Aires, Montevideo had naval supremacy over the city, Vicente Nieto organized the actions at the Upper Peru. Nieto proposed to José Fernando de Abascal y Sousa, viceroy of the Viceroyalty of Peru at the North, to annex the Upper Peru to it.
He thought that the revolution could be contained in Buenos Aires, before launching a definitive attack. Buenos Aires was declared a rogue city by the Council of Regency, which appointed Montevideo as capital of the viceroyalty
Flag of Macha
The flag of Macha is the name given to a pair of flags of Argentina found at a chapel in the hamlet of Titiri, near the village of Macha, north of Potosí, Bolivia. They are considered to be the first physical flags created by Manuel Belgrano, who in November 1813 hid the standards to prevent them from falling into enemy hands, they were discovered in 1885. Bolivia kept one of those flags at Sucre. Tucumán Province has used it as provincial flag since 2010; the flag preserved in Argentina is a triband of blue and blue bands, like the modern flag of Argentina, but the one kept in Bolivia is a triband of white and white. The Flag of Argentina was created by Manuel Belgrano during the Argentine War of Independence. After concluding the Paraguay campaign, he moved to Rosario to build artilleries. While being in the village he noticed that both the royalist and patriotic forces were using the same colors, Spain's yellow and red, he requested to the First Triumvirate a new cockade, approved by a decree on February 18, 1812.
The colours of this cockade were light blue. Encouraged by this success, he created a flag of the same colours nine days later; the flag was first flown, for the soldiers to swear allegiance to it, on 27 February 1812, on the Batería Libertad, by the Paraná River. Although it is known that this first flag had white and light blue colours, the design is unknown by historians, could be either a blue-white-blue triband, or white-blue-white. Belgrano wrote a letter to the Triumvirate to inform it of the new flag, saying that "...being in need to raise a flag, not having one, I made it to be done white and light blue according to the colours of the national cockade...". Still uninformed of this, the Triumvirate dispatched Belgrano to Salta, to reinforce the Army of the North; this gave room to another unclear detail: whenever Belgrano left the physical flag in Rosario, or took it with him to the North. Belgrano dispatched a letter addressed to the First Triumvirate, informing them of the newly created flag.
However, unlike with the cockade, the Triumvirate did not accept the use of the flag: the international policy at the time was to state that the government was ruling on behalf of Ferdinand VII king of Spain captive of Napoleon, whereas the creation of a flag was a clear independentist act. Thus, the triumvirate sent a warning to Belgrano not to fight under the flag, but by the time the reply had arrived, Belgrano had moved to the north, following the previous orders that requested him to strengthen the patriotic position in the Upper Peru after the defeat of Juan José Castelli at the Battle of Huaqui. Still unaware about the Triumvirate's refusal, Belgrano raised the flag at San Salvador de Jujuy and had it blessed by the local church on the second anniversary of the May Revolution. Belgrano accepted the orders from the Triumvirate by time they arrived to Salta and ended using the flag; as soldiers had made oaths to the new flag, Belgrano said that he was saving it for the circumstance of a great victory.
The First Triumvirate was replaced by the Second Triumvirate, with a more liberal ideology, who called the Asamblea del Año XIII. This assembly authorized to use the flag as a War flag, but not as a national one; the first oath to the newly approved flag was on February 13, 1813, next to the Salado River, known since as "Río Juramento". The first battle fought with the approved flag was the Battle of Salta, a decisive patriotic victory that achieved the complete defeat of royalist Pío Tristán; the army was defeated at the battles of Vilcapugio and Ayohuma. After those defeats, the army retreated to the South. Fearing that the enemy armies got the flags, he left them to the care of the parish priest of Macha, which hid them behind a Saint Teresa of Avila's portrait in a chapel near the small hamlet of Titiri. Belgrano was summoned back to Buenos Aires, sent to Europe in diplomatic mission, the flags was considered to be lost; the flags were discovered many decades in 1885. The new priest was cleaning and restoring the chapel, found them.
The flags were moved to the "Museum of the Independence" in Sucre. The other was delivered to Argentina in 1896, after a request from Argentine ambassador to Bolivia Adolfo Carranza; this last one is kept at the National Historical Museum. The National Historical Museum started making a study of it. María Pía Tamborini and Patricia Lissa were in charge of the restoration; the flag is made of silk, only the 70% of it remains. It was kept under bad conditions over the years, the silk used was not of high quality either. For this reason, the original colours could not be restored, which were ivory white; the flag is kept at a room with low lights. It was made available to the view of the public in year of the Argentina Bicentennial. Flag of Argentina Manuel Belgrano Torres, Eduardo Pérez. Bandera de Macha: La Bandera de Belgrano. Salta: Hanne. ISBN 978-987-1264-34-6. Goman, Adolfo Mario. Enigmas sobre las primeras banderas argentinas. Cuatro Vientos. ISBN 987-564-702-0
National Flag Memorial (Argentina)
The National Flag Memorial in Rosario, Argentina, is a monumental complex built near the shore of the Paraná River. It was inaugurated on June 20, 1957, the anniversary of the death of Manuel Belgrano, creator of the Argentine flag, who raised it for the first time on an island on the opposite shore of the river on February 27, 1812; the complex has a total area of about 10,000 square metres, was built using stone from the Andes, under the direction of architects Ángel Guido and Alejandro Bustillo, the sculptors José Fioravanti, Alfredo Bigatti and Eduardo Barnes. The Monumento has three parts: the Tower or mast, 70 metres high, which commemorates the Revolution of May 1810 and houses Manuel Belgrano's crypt in its base. Under the Propylaeum there is the Honour Room for the Flags of America; the complex faces Belgrano Avenue, is delimited by Córdoba St. and Santa Fe St. which slope down towards the river at this point. The Propylaeum can be accessed from the pedestrian passage called Pasaje Juramento, which starts at Buenos Aires St. between the municipal building and the Cathedral, in front of Plaza 25 de Mayo.
The passage is flanked by statues by famous sculptor Lola Mora. The Memorial and the National Flag Park located in front of it are the seat of the main celebrations of Flag Day on June 20; the 50th anniversary of the inauguration of the complex, in 2007, was marked by a special celebration and by the unveiling of a new lighting system. Flag of Argentina Manuel Belgrano List of buildings List of National Historic Monuments of Argentina Virtual Visit to the Flag memorial View map location Monumento Histórico Nacional a la Bandera Argentina. Works and sites of patrimonial value, Municipality of Rosario. Works and sites of patrimonial value of the municipality of Rosario
La Paz revolution
The city of La Paz experienced a revolution in 1809 that deposed Spanish authorities and declared independence. It is considered one of the early steps of the Spanish American wars of independence, an antecedent of the independence of Bolivia. However, such revolution was defeated shortly afterwards, the city returned to Spanish rule. In 1781, for a total of six months, a group of Aymara people laid siege to La Paz. Under the leadership of Túpac Katari, they destroyed churches and government property. Despite the failure of the Indians’ plight crushed by the military alliance of Spanish and Creoles, thoughts of independence continued flourishing. Thirty years Indians laid a two-month siege on La Paz – where and when the legend of the Ekeko is set, it was not until the autumn of 1807 when Napoleon moved French troops through Spain to invade Portugal and with Spanish authority fatally weakened, that the prospect of independence re-emerged in the native imagination. The United States’ independence in 1776 was an inspirational example of empowered colonists deposing a despotic foreign rule.
With Spanish authority deteriorating, as Charles IV renounced the throne in favor of Ferdinand VII, he in favor of Joseph Bonaparte, it was ripe for revolution. On July 16, in the city of La Paz, as celebrations for the Virgin of Carmen were enfolding, a group of revolutionaries led by Colonel Pedro Domingo Murillo and other individuals besieged the city barracks and forced the governor, Tadeo Davila and the Bishop of La Paz, Remigio de la Santa y Ortega, to resign, it was on July 16, 1809 that mestizo Pedro Domingo Murillo famously said that the Bolivian revolution was igniting a lamp that nobody would be able to extinguish. Many historians agree. Political power went to the local cabildo until a "Junta Tuitiva de los Derechos del Pueblo", headed by Murillo, was formed. On July 27, the Junta proclaimed colonial independence. José Manuel de Goyeneche, despite suspected of having Carlists sympathies, was called forward to lead royalist forces against the insurgents. While many revolutionaries enlisted and marched to Chacaltaya to await enemy troops, a counter-revolution headed by Pedro Indaburo broiled in the capital.
La Paz was defended by Murillo, able to maintain a military force of 800 men. Viceroy José Fernando de Abascal sent troops from Lima to repress the revolt and seized this opportunity to decree the reannexation of Upper Peru to his jurisdiction of Peru. Royalists there formed a clear majority among americanos. Elites in Lima, in particular, whose wealth and influence had declined since the Bourbon repartitioning of South America, placed their hopes not in the illusory promises of liberation but rather in the rewards they could secure through fidelity to the Crown. Murillo and the other leaders were beheaded and their heads exhibited to the people as deterrent. Bolivian War of Independence Chuquisaca Revolution May Revolution
Battle of Ayohuma
The Battle of Ayohuma was an action fought on 14 November 1813, during the second Upper Peru Campaign of the Argentine War of Independence. The republican forces of the Army of the North, led by General Manuel Belgrano were defeated by the royalists, commanded by Joaquín de la Pezuela. After the rout of Vilcapugio, Belgrano established his headquarters at Macha. There he reorganized his army, obtaining help from Francisco Ocampo, from the provinces of Upper Peru. At the end of October 1813, the republican army included around 3,400 men, of which 1,000 were veterans. An important fraction of the republican army, under the command of General Díaz Vélez had remained isolated at Potosí after Vilcapugio, but was able to reunite with Belgrano after a small action at Tambo Nuevo relieved them from the pressure of the royalist army. Despite their recent victory, Pezuela's troops were short of supplies, they had sought refuge on the Condo-Condo heights, being surrounded by hostile populations and still recovering from the casualties suffered at Vilcapugio, they could not take the offensive against the Army of the North.
However, on 29 October, they left their camp in Condo-Condo in order to attack the republicans before they could obtain further reinforcements. On 12 November, they arrived at Toquirí, a hill dominating the small plain of Ayohuma, half a league from the village of the same name. In the meantime, just two leagues away from Toquirí, on 8 November, Belgrano had discussed his plans with his officials; the majority of them wanted to withdraw to Potosí. That same night the army left Macha; the armies that were about to face each other exhibited a significant disproportion. While the republican cavalry outnumbered the royalists' two-to-one, Pezuela had twice as much infantry and 18 pieces of artillery, against only eight carried by Belgrano's troops. At dawn of 14 November the royalists began their descent from their high position and by mid-morning they had deployed the bulk of their forces on the plain. Belgrano's troops were meanwhile attending Mass if aware of the enemy movements. An hour Pezuela had completed their maneuver, outflanking the republicans on their right.
In the opinion of Lieutenant Gregorio Aráoz de Lamadrid, one of Belgrano's best officers, this move proved decisive for the outcome of the battle. Pezuela's artillery opened fire, blasting holes in the republicans ranks. In a hail of enemy fire, Belgrano ordered the advance of his infantry and cavalry toward the enemy right flank, but they could not overcame Pezuela's entrenchments. To make matters worse, the republicans' lighter guns were no match for the royalist ones. Belgrano was forced to retreat. By a trumpet call and waving the United Provinces flag on the top of a hill, he managed to gather some 500 men, leaving around 200 dead, 200 injured, 500 prisoners and all his artillery on the battlefield. Among the dead was the commander of the Batallón de Castas, Colonel José Superí, killed by the royalist artillery, his battalion was made of soldiers of mulatto descent. José María Paz, an officer who would play a key role in the Argentine Civil Wars, had to rescue his brother, Captain Julián Paz, when the latter's horse was killed by gunfire while crossing a stream.
Three mulatto auxiliary women, María Remedios del Valle and her two daughters, became famous for their efforts to provide water to the troops and assist wounded soldiers on the battlefield in spite of the heavy royalist bombardment, they are since remembered as the Niñas de Ayohuma in Argentina. Belgrano's 500 survivors retreated to Potosí, but the city had to be evacuated on 18 November due to the approaching royalists. Belgrano moved back to Tucumán, where on 30 January 1814, he resigned the command of the Northern Army to General San Martín, he would write about the tactical superiority of the Spaniard officers as compared to his limited knowledge of warfare. Battle of Pequereque Battle of Vilcapugio Action of Tambo Nuevo Flag of Macha García Camba, Andrés. Memorias para la Historia de las armas españolas en el Perú. Sociedad tipográfica de Hortelano y compañia, V. I. Goman, Adolfo Mario. Enigmas sobre las primeras banderas argentinas. Cuatro Vientos. ISBN 987-564-702-0
The Primera Junta or First Assembly is the most common name given to the first independent government of Argentina. It was created on 25 May 1810, as a result of the events of the May Revolution; the Junta had representatives from only Buenos Aires. When it was expanded, as expected, with the addition of the representatives from the other cities of the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata, it became popularly known instead as the Junta Grande; the Junta operated at El Fuerte, used since 1776 as a residence by the Viceroys. This Junta—officially named the Junta Provisional Gubernativa de las Provincias del Río de la Plata a nombre del Señor Don Fernando VII —allegedly meant to govern in the name of the King of Spain, while he was imprisoned by Napoleon Bonaparte. Juntas were a form of transitional or emergency government, which attempted to maintain Spanish sovereignty, that emerged during the Napoleonic invasion in Spanish cities that had not succumbed to the French; the most important for Spanish America was the Junta of Seville, which claimed sovereignty over the overseas possessions, given the fact that the province of Seville had enjoyed exclusive rights to the American trade.
Its claims had been rejected by Spanish Americans, its authority was superseded by a Supreme Central Junta of Spain, which included American representation. When the Supreme Central Junta abolished itself in 1810, the politically active inhabitants of Buenos Aires saw no better moment than this to establish a local government, they had been influenced by the recent democratic and republican philosophical wave, were concerned about the commercial monopoly exerted by the Spanish crown, suffocating the local economy. Buenos Aires province had mitigated this problem through contraband. Local politicians, such as former council member and legal advisor to the viceroy, Juan José Castelli, who wanted a change towards self-government and free commerce, cited traditional Spanish political theory and argued that the King being imprisoned, sovereignty had returned to the people; the people were to assume the government until the King returned, just as the subjects in Spain had done two years earlier with the establishment of juntas.
The Viceroy and his supporters countered that the colonies belonged to Spain and did not have a political relationship with only the King. Therefore, they should follow any governmental body established in Spain as the legal authority, namely the Supreme Central Junta of Spain and its successor, the Council of Regency; the meeting of a Buenos Aires cabildo abierto during 22 May 1810, came under strong pressure from the militias and a crowd that formed in front of the cabildo hall on the Plaza Mayor, up to 25 May. The crowd favored the stance of the local politicians, the cabildo ended up creating the Primera Junta, the first form of local government in the territory that would become Argentina. Spain would never recover its dominion over that territory. From the beginning of the new government, two factions manifested their differences, a more radical one, whose visible leader was the Junta's Secretary, Mariano Moreno, the conservative wing that supported the Junta's President, Cornelio Saavedra.
In general the principles of the May Revolution were popular sovereignty, the principle of representation and federalization, division of powers, the maintenance of the mandates, publication of the government's actions President Cornelio SaavedraSecretaries: Mariano Moreno Juan José PasoCommittee member Manuel Alberti Miguel de Azcuénaga Manuel Belgrano Juan José Castelli Domingo Matheu Juan Larrea Despite the replacement of Cisneros, the Royal Audience and the Cabildo stood with the authorities that existed before the revolution, who opposed the Junta since its first day. The Audience refused at first to swear allegiance to the Junta, when they did, prosecutor Caspe did so with clear gestures of contempt. Caspe would be ambushed near his home, in retaliation for this; the Cabildo imposed a time limit on the Junta: if the General Congress was not formed in six months, the Cabildo would reassume government. The Junta answered the same day; the Audience requested that the Junta submitted to the Regency Counsel, but the Junta refused, on the grounds that Cisneros did not so submit and the Audience did not request him to.
The Audience itself swore allegiance to the Counsel shortly after, they were all banished in response. Together with the ex-viceroy Cisneros, they were forced to take the ship Dart that left them at the Canary Islands. From the early days of the Primera Junta there was a strong rivalry between Moreno. According to Ignacio Núñez, the Morenists accused Saavedra of plotting to restore the tyranny of the viceroys in his office, while the Saavedrists accused Moreno of usurping government roles that were not intended for him. Matheu would point in his memories that the Morenists were upset because they perceived that Saavedra enjoyed receiving honors and distinctions that they had chosen to avoid; the Junta was received with mixed reactions from the other cities of the viceroyalty. Santa Fe, Entre Ríos, Misiones and Mendoza supported the change, others did not. Upper Peru, which benefited from the system of mita to exploit the mines in
Equestrian monument to General Manuel Belgrano
The Equestrian monument to General Manuel Belgrano is a landmark of Buenos Aires, Argentina. It is located in front of the Casa Rosada, it depicts General Manuel Belgrano holding the Flag of Argentina, it is made of bronze over a pedestal of granite. In 1870 generals Bartolomé Mitre, Enrique Martínez and Manuel José Guerrico appointed a commission with the task of making a monument for Manuel Belgrano; this was requested to the French sculptor Louis-Robert Carrier-Belleuse, who would make the statue of Belgrano, Manuel de Santa Coloma, who designed the horse. It was finished in 1872 and moved to Buenos Aires, where it was dedicated on September 24, 1873, at an anniversary of the Battle of Tucumán. More than 20,000 people were present at the ceremony, the Argentine National Anthem was played at Teatro Colón that night. During the government of Marcelo Torcuato de Alvear it was thought that the base was too low, so it was raised. During the work the monument was rotated as well, instead of watching towards to Buenos Aires Cabildo it was made to look to the North, so that it didn't show his back to the Casa Rosada.
Manuel Belgrano Plaza de Mayo