History of Buenos Aires

The history of Buenos Aires is one that dates back to the early part of the sixteenth century. It is a history of conquest and fighting for liberation, of trying to maintain indigenous traditions in the face of massive expansion, of independence and civil war. The Buenos Aires People, who refer to themselves as portenos, meaning people of the port, can testify to the fact that it was a long and arduous road until Argentina declared its independence from Spain in 1816. It was, in fact, the Spanish who first settled the city that would become the capital of Argentina, Buenos Aires.

One of the early facts about Buenos Aires is that is was founded by a Spanish seaman, Pedro Mendoza, who was leading an expedition for the Spanish crown in 1536. Roughly twenty years earlier, another Spanish seaman named Juan Diaz de Solis made his way into the Rio de la Plata, but he never arrived home after being attacked and killed by a native Uruguayan tribe. The history of Buenos Aires indicates that the first settlement of the Mendoza expedition was in what is now San Telmo. The following decades were marked by intense fighting between Spanish settlers and the indigenous Buenos Aires people, who were fighting to maintain long-held traditions and cultural nuances. The Spanish maintained settlements in and around Buenos Aires and ultimately the port needed to be opened up with less restrictions in order to allow for the free flow of goods from Spain to South America. In this way, the Spanish crown had to recognize the value of a working system of economy and trade in Argentina and especially the port city of Buenos Aires. This is perhaps why the Buenos Aires people are so proud of the heritage of the title that they have given to themselves.

The facts about Buenos Aires also include great battles during the British invasions of 1806. The British successfully infiltrated the Rio de la Plata twice. The British rule in the history of Buenos Aires did not last long as they were ultimately defeated and turned back by a force from Montevideo. Fighting with the Spanish continued on for another ten years until Argentina was finally able to declare its independence from Spain in 1816. This was all started by the Argentine War of Independence, wherein factions for the liberation of the nation coalesced to fight against the royalist sympathizers and strongholds in the city. Ever since, Buenos Aires has been the bastion for liberal thinking, fine arts, museums, and progress in Argentina. The history of Buenos Aires points to centuries of struggle for independence and sovereignty. The Argentinean people ultimately won their independence from colonial and royalist invaders, but it was at significant cost to many of the country’s sons and daughters.

The history of Buenos Aires is also marked by the now well-known Eva Peron (also called Evita), who was the wife of President Juan Peron in the 1940s and 50s. This progressive female figure in a male-dominated government pushed for women's voting rights, spearheaded charity work, and even almost ran for vice president of the country. She was often referred to as the Spiritual Leader of the Nation, but sadly died an early death at the age of 33 in 1952.

For people visiting this region, you might also just be interested in some basic facts about Buenos Aires. It is the capital city of Argentina. The Greater Buenos Aires area comprises around 13 million people. It is known for having hundreds of bookstores, many historically significant monuments, as well as a range of museums, galleries, and important theaters such as Teatro Colon.

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