Tribute to Juan Martín Miguel de Güemes

Like every year on June 17th, tribute is paid to General Juan Martin Miguel de Güemes, a liberator who aided the National Army accompanied by his gauchos.

Despite the cold temperatures of June in Salta, more and more locals as well as visitors keep watch during the night to respect the memory of General Juan Martin Miguel de Güemes.

Like every year on June 17th, tribute is paid to this liberator who, accompanied by his gauchos, aided the national army commanded by San Martin to keep their ideals of independence and national sovereignty.

The gauchos, symbols of the Province of Salta in their black and red outfits, parade several days before around the town on their horses and they look forward to the last night so that they can carry out one of the most historical traditions of the town: the ritual of the bonfires.

  • Monument to Guemes, Cerro San Bernardo

    Monument to Guemes, Cerro San Bernardo

  • Northeastern Argentina has its own national hero

    Northeastern Argentina has its own national hero

  • Every year he is remembered with the same strength

    Every year he is remembered with the same strength

  • The famous black and red ponchos

    The famous black and red ponchos

  • The country wants to be there.

    The country wants to be there.

The gauchos, symbols of the Province of Salta in their black and red outfits, parade several days before around the town on their horses and they look forward to the last night so that they can carry out one of the most historical traditions of the town: the ritual of the bonfires.

They are lit near the Güemes Monument which lies at the foot of San Bernardo Hill. Bonfires are also lit in the small district of Cañada de la Horqueta. That is where the hero died in front of his gauchos pronouncing his last meaningful words."Dying for our fatherland is glory”, he said, and so he did.


Now, A Hero for All

Argentina has bragged about having a federal vision for years, but many times it has unitary postures that widen the communication gap between the big city of Buenos Aires and the rest of the provinces.

Perhaps that is the reason why a bylaw was passed in 2006, out of justice and respect, providing that the caudillo from Salta was declared “national hero” so that he would be compared to General San Martin and Manuel Belgrano.Thus, Northeastern Argentina has its own national hero.

He will be remembered as he has always been, with crowds in the street and with the lively spirit of this unique commander. Thousands of gauchos of all ages come along on horseback from all the corners of Salta and Northern Argentina. They come with their families and children dressed in the famous black and red ponchos of General Güemes. They will all be looked after by the Lady of Miracles who, also on horseback, will inspire hope at each step. She will be worshiped by the faithful on a special stage set up for the occasion.

The provincial and national authorities together with general public pay tribute to the national spirit of General Güemes and the many gauchos who accompanied him in the making of history.

Autor Pablo Etchevers Fotografo Jorge González

Bear in mindBear in mind: The Gauchos de Güemes Festival is one the most beautiful annual events in the Province of Salta. On these days, lodges are booked out by people who do not want to miss the tribute. Lately, it seems that all the country wants to be there.

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