Estancia Jesuítica de Caroya

Estancia de Caroya was the first venue organized by the Company of Jesus back in 1616.

First, a summer house

Located on the western boundary of the District of Colonia Caroya, in the Province of Córdoba, 44 kilometers north of the City of Córdoba (National Route 9), this huge colonial grand house is surrounded by tree groves and vines at the foot of the mountain range known as Sierras Chicas.

By 1661, it had been sold to the founder of Monserrat College, Priest Ignacio Duarte Quiróz, who succeeded in transforming it into a prodigious land producing corn and wheat, fruit, wine, honey and carob trees. Later on, in 1867, Duarte donated it to the College so that it would be used as a summer yard by its students. Pupils like Juan José Paso, Nicolás Avellaneda and viceroy Liniers’ children spent their well-deserved holidays there.

  • A summer house

    A summer house

  • Huge colonial mansion surrounded by groves

    Huge colonial mansion surrounded by groves

  • A large central courtyard

    A large central courtyard

  • Two huge palm trees

    Two huge palm trees

Between 1814 and 1816, the battles of the war for Independence turned Caroya into the first bladed weapon factory in the country. It was a supplier of bayonet spikes for the Northern Army. In 1854, the national government took possession of the venue. In 1876, Nicolás Avellaneda’s administration resolved to shelter Italian immigrants coming from Friuli. In 1878, the new colonists who had already settled down in the estancia quarters began to organize a village very close to the main house.

The Grand House

The entire residence revolves around an ample central yard boasting two huge palm trees at the entrance, followed by a lush garden giving off the sweet aroma of elm trees, orange trees and palm trees. Next to the chapel, the area where the fishing nets are hung, the dam, the remains of the mill house and the irrigation ditches, in addition to the area devoted to the orchard, represent an outstanding sample of residential architecture in the rural environment. Its buildings feature the typical architectural traits of the seventeenth, eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, marked by the different stages in the use of the house.

Consequently, the multi-theme museum and the interpretation center of the estancia managed by the Cultural Heritage Office of the Province of Córdoba become quite significant. The objects and furniture inside the ten rooms that make up the cloisters give testimony of the different periods. Wooden chests, fraileros (armchairs of the Renaissance), Cusqueña paintings and the image of Saint Raymund Nonnatus in polychrome wood were true witnesses to the days of rest spent by the pupils at the Monserrat.

La Estancia de Caroya

The chapel, which dates from the seventeenth century, presents stone walls and only one image of the Virgin of Monserrat at the altar: an invitation to seclusion.

Weapon enthusiasts may go around the halls and the gallery where war items such as 1879 Remington and 1850 Charleville carabines, an 1857 Smith shotgun, as well as sabers and swords from the days of the Revolution, are on display.

Friulian influence is evident in the house bedroom furniture, trunks, spinning wheels and other domestic artifacts. Likewise, a huge barrel with a grape press reveals the produce of Caroya, where the descendants of those immigrants still make the famous Frambua wine.

After years of history, the silence and pleasant corners of Caroya shelter the spirit of each of the Jesuit estancias.

Autor Pablo Etchevers Fotografo Gentileza

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