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Castellanos, Aarón González (1800–1880)

Castellanos, Aarón González (1800–1880)

Aarón González Castellanos (b. 8 August 1800; d. 1 April 1880), commonly regarded as the greatest promoter of agricultural colonization of nineteenth-century Argentina. Born in the city of Salta, as a young man he joined the cavalry forces led by a regional caudillo named Martin Güemes, who fought against the Spanish. After the conclusion of the wars of independence, he went to Peru, where he engaged in trade in the mining center of Cerro de Pasco. Subsequently he became involved in an ambitious colonization scheme on the Río Bermejo but was persecuted by Paraguayan dictator José Francia, who held him prisoner from 1825 to 1830. Later Castellanos established himself in Buenos Aires Province, where he raised cattle. In the late 1830s he sold his properties and went to Paris, where he became known for writing several descriptive publications on Argentina. Castellanos returned to Argentina in 1853 and convinced the provincial government of Santa Fe to support his colonization scheme in the Chaco region. He helped finance the emigration of 200 families of agricultural workers from Dunkirk and Antwerp, then founded the agricultural colony of Esperanza in Santa Fe, which is still a prosperous grain-producing town. Castellanos also promoted the construction of docks in the port of Rosario and served in the municipal government of that city.

See alsoArgentina: The Nineteenth Century .

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Martin Mulhall, Handbook of the River Plate (1885).

Additional Bibliography

Caro Figueroa, Gregorio A. "Aarón Castellanos y las colonias en la Argentina." Todo es Historia 32:371 (June 1998): 38-40.

                                    Carlos Marichal

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