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Le Bas & Marrs Families
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Le Bas Family

José Valentín de Olavarría

Michael’s father’s maternal grandmother was Olavarría’s daughter, Gertrudis.
The following is our translation (July 2021) adapted from:
Wikipedia page: José Valentín de Olavarría

Missing imgage

José Valentín de Olavarría

(Source: Wikipedia)

  José Valentín de Olavarria was born on February 13, 1801, in Salto, at that time in the Viceroyalty of the River Plate (Vireinato del Rio de la Plata), today in the province of Buenos Aires, Argentina.  He died in Montevideo, Uruguay, on February 23, 1845.  He took an active part in Argentina’s war of independence and civil wars.

   He was the son of Antonio de Olavarría, member of a Basque family from the Anteiglesia de Murueta, municipality of Orozco, in Vizcaya, Spain.
  He was eleven years-old when, in 1812, he joined the Buenos Aires Artillery Regiment as a cadet.  In 1816, he joined San Martin’s Army of the Andes and fought the Spaniards in Chile in the battles of Chacabuco (1817), Cancha Rayada (1818), Maipú (1818), and Biobío (1819).  He next took part in the campaign to Peru.  When San Martín resigned in favor of Simon Bolivar (1822), Olavaría joined Bolívar and fought in the battles of Cochabamba (1823), Junín (1824), and was decorated for heroism during the battle of Ayacucho (1824).
  Olavarría was almost 24 years-old when he retired from Bolívar’s army in December, 1824, with the rank of Colonel.  He returned to Buenos Aires and joined the army as head of a regiment for the Brazilian War, during which he took part in the Battle of Ituzaingó (1827).
  He supported General Lavalle (Unionist) in the internal civil disputes between Unionists (power to be centered in Bs.As.) and Federalists (autonomous provinces wth a weak central gov.).  Disagreeing with the Federalist politics of Juan Manuel de Rosas (later a bloody dictator), Olavarría retired from military life and, already married with children, became an estanciero (rancher) near Mercedes (Prov. of Bs.As.).
  After the defeat of the Unionists in the Argentine Civil Wars (1828-1831), Olavarría emigrated to Uruguay, where he died on October 23, 1845, in Montevideo.

The town of Olavarría, in the province of Buenos Aires, founded by Álvaro Barros, was named in his honor.  On October 12, 1901, a monument by the sculptor Alejo Joris (1865-1951) was inaugurated in the Central Plaza of the city that bears his name.

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