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Tue, 11.08.1768

Maria Remedios, Abolitionist born

María Remedios del Valle ca

*The birth of María Remedios. is celebrated on this date in c1768. She was an Afro Argentine abolitionist and soldier.

María Remedios del Valle was born in Buenos Aires in the second half of the eighteenth century. The details of her parentage are unknown, but according to her military record, she was a parda or pardo, one of the categories applied to the descendants of African slaves. She married and was the mother of two children, one of whom was adopted, although neither child’s name is known. Del Valle participated in the Argentine War of Independence.

Wounded in battle, captured, imprisoned, and escaped, she lost her entire family during the war. When the war ended, she returned to Buenos Aires and eventually turned to beg. Discovered by one of the generals under whom she had fought, she was approved for a pension over the last decade of her life. Testimony given in the 1828 Diario de Sesiones, a Congressional record, states that she was "sixty or more years old," placing her birth around 1768. In the military archives, pension records indicate on November 8, 1847, Rosas, Also known as the "Madre de la Patria" (Mother of the Homeland), died.

She first appeared in a history book in Argentina in the early 1930s, when Carlos Ibarguren published her story, and in 1944, Buenos Aires named a street in her honor. She was largely forgotten until the 21st century when Argentine historians began including the contributions of Afro Argentines. She is now widely recognized for her contributions to the nation's independence, and numerous publications have retold her story since 2013. November 8 is celebrated in her honor as the National Day of Afro Argentines and African Culture.

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