Ark (Wooden Chest with Iron Locks)


This heavy wooden chest served a crucial purpose for municipal officials of Buenos Aires in the eighteenth century: it stored their documents. Until the early nineteenth century, the Spanish Crown ruled over much of South America, including Buenos Aires. Because their empire was so vast, and travel in between the territories took several months, accurate record-keeping was essential. City... Read More »

Artwork by Calixto Mamaní


Calixto Mamaní was an Argentine artist from the city of Salta, in the north of the country. His work emphasized the influence of the Incas, the indigenous peoples who ruled over much of the Andes Mountain region before the Spaniards arrived. These masks likely provide an example of this theme in his work. Analyzing the significance of these pieces illustrates the endurance of the cultural... Read More »

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Benjamín Montes with Bourgan, Funge, and Company


Since 1810, social critics in Buenos Aires had long been concerned about young people from the lower classes—especially young men—exercising greater independence within the home. With the decline of parental authority, they were alarmed at the sight of growing numbers of young people as a potential source of disorder, and they looked to the state for solutions. As a result, the police were... Read More »

Biblioteca Digital Hispánica (Hispanic Digital Library)

...the Biblioteca Digital Hispánica is a well-organized, highly searchable, and remarkable platform for a wide audience, including instructors, students, researchers, and the general public. Historians interested in Spain’s cross-cultural encounters in Europe, Asia, and the Americas will particularly benefit from this resource.

Brazil Cordel Literature Web Archive

These cordel-blogs are a particularly rich source of information and perspective that “represent[s] the voice of the blogger rather than the organization that sponsored the website.”

Brazilian Carriage


This horse-drawn carriage dates from the late-eighteenth or early nineteenth century. During this period, carriages like this were the preferred form of transportation for elite members of society. It protected them from inclement weather and created a spectacle among the rest of the townspeople who saw them ride by. To reflect their high social position, the individuals who rode in carriages... Read More »

Cantino planisphere


The famous Cantino planisphere was made in 1502 by an anonymous Portuguese official at the request of Alberto Cantino, an Italian agent in Lisbon of Ercole d’Este, Duke of Ferrara. It is the earliest map showing the recent discoveries by the explorer Vasco da Gama, who, using a new portable version of astronomers’ astrolabe, charted Brazil, Newfoundland, Greenland, Africa, and India. Besides... Read More »

Cast of the Hand of Brazilian Emperor Pedro II


Brazilian Emperor Pedro II ruled from 1831 – 1889. He was the last emperor in power before Brazil became a republic. This image captures two bronze hand molds taken of Pedro II’s right hand in the early nineteenth century. The one on the left was taken by Marc Ferrez, and the one on the right was created by Antonio Joaquim de Azevedo. Both feature a ring that Pedro II wore on his index finger... Read More »

Castillo de Piria


This castle-like home once belonged to Francisco Piria, a Uruguayan entrepreneur and the founder of the town of Piriápolis. He lived from 1847 to 1933. Piria was the child of Italian immigrants, who comprised a major portion of the population in the Rio de la Plata region during this period. He grew up in the capital city of Montevideo and attended school in Italy. In 1890, he purchased land... Read More »

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Castro Speech Database

This database contains English translations of thousands of speeches, interviews, and press conferences given by Fidel Castro between 1959 and 1996.