- Town:Buenos Aires
Year of creation:1942
- Rider(s):Bolivar, Simon
Simón Bolívar (1783–1830) played a key role in liberating Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru (together with José de San Martín) and Bolivia from Spanish rule.
Born in Venezuela, Bolívar obtained a great deal of his education in France and Spain. He returned to Venezuela and was given a military command in New Granada (modern-day Colombia) in 1813. In 1819, he successfully finalized a campaign for the independence of New Granada, and from this stronghold launched independence campaigns in Venezuela and Ecuador, which he concluded with victories in 1821 and 1822. He became President of the new state Gran Colombia, which covered much of today’s Colombia, Panama, Venezuela, Ecuador, northern Peru and the northwest of Brazil. In 1822 he took over the task from José de San Martin of fully liberating Peru.
Assisted by Antonio José de Sucre, Bolívar defeated the Spanish forces in 1824, resulting in the creation of the Republic of Bolivia, a country named after its liberator. Bolívar had great difficulties maintaining control of the vast territory of Gran Colombia. After failing to write a new constitution, he proclaimed himself dictator in 1828, which was meant to be a temporary measure to re-establish his authority and to save the republic. He survived an assassination attempt in 1828. Two years of uprisings followed. Bolívar resigned his presidency in 1830 and died in the same year, before he could go into exile in France as he intended.
Bolívar was an admirer of George Washington. They shared the same objective: independence for their people and the establishment of a democratic state. They differed, however, on two important matters. Bolívar was anti-slavery, despite coming from an area that relied heavily on slave labour, and he did not believe that the US system of democracy could function in Latin America, claiming that the governance of heterogeneous societies like Gran Colombia ‘will require an infinitely firm hand’
- Sculptor(s):Fioravanti, José‚