History of Argentina


The first population register of the territory currently controlled by Argentina goes back to the 12th or 13th millennium AP, according to the findings of Los Toldos and Piedra Museo.Among the original peoples, the hunters and gatherers inhabited Patagonia, the Pampa and the Chaco. The farmers settled in the northwest, Cuyo, the Sierras de Córdoba and later in Mesopotamia. Tastil, in the northwest, was the largest pre-Columbian city located in the current Argentine territory, with a population of 2000 inhabitants.

The first traces of human life in this territory correspond to peoples of a Paleolithic cultural level who, three thousand years ago, incorporated the first Mesolithic and Neolithic cultural contributions, until the time of the conquest and European colonization, the Argentine territory has been occupied by different indigenous peoples, with different social organizations that can be divided into three main groups:

Hunters and gatherers of basic oceanic canoe food, such as the yagan or yámana and the haush in Tierra del Fuego and the Fuegian channels.

Advanced hunters and food gatherers such as the pámpidos, in the center-east: hets in the meadows and steppes of the Pampas and North Patagonian regions; and chonks in Patagonia -invaded from the s. XVIII by the mapuches potters from the centrosur of the current Chile- and the qom and wichi in the Chaco region. Also belong to this group the Pampidos Charrúas and Minuanes, who had incorporated ceramics.

Farmers with pottery like the Guarani and the Andean and derived cultures. As of the second millennium, the avá (an Amazonian town known since the 17th century by the Spaniards as “Guaraní”) invaded the NEA and the Argentine Littoral; they were cultivators of cassava and avaty or corn in the form of slash (felling and burning of forests) and therefore semisedentary.The cultures centered on agriculture and livestock of the NOA were purely sedentary, and had developed commercial networks encompassed in the set currently called «Diaguita»; After establishing a quasi-state system around local manors, they were subdued by the Inca Empire around 1480. Influenced by these Andean cultures, other people’s such as the Heniakâmîare, Tonocotés and Huarpes developed a less developed agriculture and livestock, adapted to the conditions of the flat and mountain regions of the center of present-day Argentina and Cuyo.

In the XIV and XV centuries, the Inca Empire conquered part of the current provinces of Jujuy, Salta, Catamarca, the western end of the province of Tucumán, western part of the provinces of La Rioja and San Juan, the northwest of the province of Mendoza and, probably, the north of Santiago del Estero, incorporating its territories to the Collasuyo, which was the southern part of the Tahuantinsuyo or regions of such an empire. Traditionally, the conquest is attributed to the Inca monarch Tupac Yupanqui. Several seigniories of the region, such as the omaguacas, the likanantai (atacamas), the huarpes, the diaguitas and others, tried to resist, but the Incas managed to dominate them, transferring to their territories the mitimaes or colonists deported from the tribes of chichas, who lived in what is the southwest of the current Bolivian territory. Others, such as the sanavirones, the lule-tonocoté and the henia-kâmîare (popularly called “comechingones”), successfully resisted the Inca invasion and remained as independent lordships.

The independence

Juana Azurduy, generala (PM) of the Argentine Army, assumed the command of the wars in Upper Peru for the emancipation of the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata. It is honored in Argentina and Bolivia.

Towards 1806 and 1807 the English invasions to the River of the Silver took place, that were repelled in two opportunities by the military garrisons and by the civil population, that was organized in units of militias formed by numerous criollos – as much Buenosairean as coming from the Interior- , Spanish, indigenous and even black slaves. The viceroy Rafael de Sobremonte was blamed for cowardice and incompetence before the initial triumphs of the invaders, and replaced by the cabildo of the capital, being replaced by Santiago de Liniers, hero of the Reconquest and Defense. The main leaders of these militias quickly became a new power elite in the city of Buenos Aires, entering as members of the Cabildo.

Although Liniers was confirmed in office by the King of Spain, the dismissal of a viceroy by popular pressure was unprecedented in the history of America, which – together with the victory over the British armies – gave great prestige to Buenos Aires, that gained a character of «Greater Sister» before the other provinces.