La fosa común situada en el Cemiterio Municipal de Vilagarcía será el punto de partida de la Andaina pola Memoria, que se celebrará el día 14. La segunda escala será en Loenzo, un lugar donde una placa recuerda a varias víctimas de la Guerra Civil, y desde este lugar los participantes en la caminata se desplazarán hasta Os Martices. El descendiente de dos víctimas se referirá a sus asesinatos en este lugar.
Ya en el casco urbano, la primera escala será en San Roque, a la altura del lugar donde se encontraba el Cuartel de la Guardia Civil, convertido en un sangriento escenario de torturas y muertes, para continuar hasta la Casa Consistorial, donde será rememorada la proclamación de la II República, el día 14 de abril de 1931, con Elpidio Vilaverde como alcalde del municipio.
El edificio que hoy alberga la Escola de Música fue el cuartel de la Falange y será otro punto de atención, y el recorrido concluirá en el Parque Miguel Hernández, frente al monumento Rosas Rotas, en el que están inscritos los nombres de todas las víctimas de la represión que siguió al golpe de Estado del día 18 de julio de 1936.
Esta actividad comenzará a las 10.30 horas, la distancia a recorrer es de 4,3 kilómetros y el tiempo de duración será de 90 minutos, aproximadamente. Para participar no es necesario realizar la inscripción. La organización de este evento corresponde a la Iniciativa Cidadá pola Memoria Histórica de Vilagarcía, cuyos promotores presentaron ayer el acto en el local social habilitado por el colectivo O Faiado da Memoria.
Xosé Castro afirmó que propuestas como las programadas por el colectivo al que representa son más necesarias que nunca en un contexto muy negativo para quienes luchan por la recuperación de la memoria histórica, en el que figura la negativa del Parlamento de anular las condenas dictadas durante la Guerra Civil, la inacción de la Xunta ante la reivindicación de que expropie el Pazo de Meirás a la familia Franco y las frustradas maniobras militares de los exlegionarios en A Barosa (Barro) y su homenaje a Millán Astray. "É necesaria a acción de base", dijo.
Junto con Castro, Cuco Villaverde, Alejandro Quintela, José Carlos Dasilva, César Roo, Margarita Teijeiro y Antón Caeiro serán los encargados de realizar una intervención en cada una de las paradas de la Andaina pola Memoria.
Margarita Teijeiro hizo alusión a un joven que figura en el cartel anunciador del paseo. Era Luis Fernández Génova, un vecino de O Castro que tenía 17 años en noviembre de 1935, cuando fue hecha la foto, en diciembre de 1936 cumplió 18, y el día 6 de enero de 1937 fue asesinado, recordó, a las puertas del Cemiterio Municipal y agarrado a los barrotes del portalón de acceso al camposanto.
O Faiado da Memoria retoma el ciclo de charlas sobre la represión en el rural
El investigador Anxo Doval imparte la primera el miércoles a las 20 horas - El jueves será el turno de Santiago Macías Pérez
M.G. | Vilagarcía 09.09.2018 | 03:14
La sede de O Faiado da Memoria, en la Plaza de Ravella, acoge esta semana dos charlas del ciclo organizado por Iniciativa Cidadá pola Memoria Histórica de Vilagarcía bajo la denominación "Verdade, xustiza e reparación".
La primera de las conferencias abordará el tema de la resistencia y represión en el rural en Faxilde y su entorno. La actividad, abierta a todo el público y con entrada gratuita, será el miércoles 12 a las 20 horas y estará a cargo del investigador de la Universidad de Santiago Anxo Doval Rey.
El jueves 13, a la misma hora, la charla estará a cargo de Santiago Macías Pérez, cofundador de la asociación por la recuperación de la memoria histórica. Abordará el tema "Abrindo fosas, pechando heridas", sobre los inicios del movimiento memorialista, las fosas de Galicia y el estado actual de gestión.
Here at this site of Os Martices on 21 January 1937, the following people were murdered: José Ramon Roo Pérez, an agricultural unionist of Despertad Campesinos [“Wake up Campesinos”], Luis Iglesias Galáns (from the UGT*), and Juan Aragunde Alfonsín who, like Roo, belonged to Despertad Campesinos.
Here on 15 Febrary 1937, after catching him in the mountains of Bamio, they executed by firearm
Enrique Mariño Barreiro, who was a communist.
And here on 19 March 1937, they also murdered Josefa Barreiro González, from the Working Women of the CNT.* She was arrested three days earlier at her house in A Torre.
*The UGT (Unión General de Trabajadores) was (is) the labor union connected to the socialist party PSOE.
*The CNT (Confederación Nacional del Trabajo) was (is) the anarchist labor union.
Enrique Mariño was a boy who lived in O Piñeiriño (Vilagarcía), and he was from Padrón where he was born. Enrique was a cobbler by profession, a member of the Communist Party, and he escaped to the mountains when he knew his life would turn into something worthless.
In the mountain he would join the Gypsy’s group. They had several hideouts; one of the last ones was Pilar’s house in Trabanca Badiña, which they abandoned under fire on 10 February 1937.
They caught Enrique because his feet were crippled and he couldn’t run. They put him in the basement of city hall and took him out three days later to execute him by firearm at this location of Os Martices. He wrote a letter to his mother, which you can read on this plaque.
Guillermo Fernández and Joaquín Franco, witnesses of that despicable incident, say that he died with is fist raised while shouting “Long Live the Republic!”
We were in Pilar’s house. I had 22 revolver—one of those old ones—and I also had a rifle. One morning we faced them when they came to the house (Pilar’s house); they came, they knocked on the door:
“Who is it?”
“The Civil Guard…!”
The Gypsy had been in Africa and had a white 44 revolver; I had the rifle. We started firing at the door… Bam! Bam!
We also jumped through a shed. We covered our comrades’ backs and were the last to stay behind, the Gypsy and I; then we caught up with the others and Pilar was crying…
“Oh my daughters!”
She had two daughters, I urged her to get herself together and said:
“Be quiet! Nothing is going to happen!”
I helped her go up and from there we left for the mountain. Suddenly a comrade “O Campanas,” realized that he had forgotten his shoes and there …Crack!… one who had hidden shot at him and hit his arm. With his arm hanging and running with us, we reached Meda. There we got together; there were twelve of us and we decided to look for someone to give medical treatment to O Campanas’ arm (his name was Ángel Buceta) and we went down. There we had big clash; four of us went down the hill, you couldn’t see anything, a foggy morning, ten steps away you couldn’t see anything. [A comrade] from Bamio went to look for the wife of one who had also escaped to see if she would give us something to eat. Sure enough, she told us to wait and that she’d make us a tortilla [Spanish omelet]. While we were waiting, we heard speaking and it was an immense row of falangists; at that moment there were just two of us, José Torres and I, there were some twenty of them and they say…
“The Falange of Vilagarcía!”
I said to Torres:
“Let’s get down and run!”
We tumbled down the mountain and they Bam! Bam!, fired on us… We were able to escape but they got Campanas and another comrade who was crippled; three days later they executed him by firearm in Los Martices. His name was Enrique Mariño. He was a communist.
Juan Gil, “O Linterneiro” from Rubiáns, or “The Mole” given that after this incident, he holed up in a hideout fashioned in his house.
Cornazo was perhaps the parish of Vilagarcía that suffered the most from the fascist coup d’état of 1936. Thereafter, left-wingers were persecuted relentlessly. Jose Ramón Roo and his brother-in-law Luis Iglesias were hidden in Cornazo by a neighbor in a house that was uninhabited; it was owned by Agustin Romero, a rich emigrant in Uruguay whose housekeeper was Juan Aragunde. They resisted a few months until 18 January when they were captured. Three days after (on 21 January 1937) they were executed at this site by firearm. [The fascists] took the two brother-and-laws’ lives and also the neighbor’s, who was so generous to them. Years later when Roo’s and Aragunde’s wives were planting potatoes, a funeral march passed by. Contrary to what customary at that time, no one walked behind the coffin; it was just the deceased and the priest, who was one the main culprits of the murder of their husbands, their loved ones. With their hoes they [the wives] started to make noise. Later that night they were arrested and taken to jail.
When they exited the door, one of them told my mother:
“Elvira, don’t worry because tomorrow morning you’ll have these plucked birds at home.”
Manolo Aragunde, Juan Aragunde Alfonsín’s son
The anarchists affiliated to the CNT allowed women to attend cultural centers, unions, and organizations where they had the opportunity to educate themselves. One of these women was Josefa Barreiro, born in Carril. She married Pascual Tobío and they had two children. Pascual was the nephew of another anarchist woman, Otilia Tobío, who was very active in workers’ demonstrations at the time. Thanks to Otilia, Josefa hid a young man in her house at A Torre. He was 22 years old and an anarchist from the area of Rubiáns. His name was Urbano Tarrío Montero.
On 16 March 1937, the falangists and the army got to the San Miguel plaza. They entered Josefa’s house, they saw a hatch on the kitchen ceiling and started to shoot. Blood immediately began to come out of the ceiling. It was Urbano’s body, a good man and innocent like all those whose lives were taken by those people. They arrested Josefa. “She left with her hair neat, with her blue coat on her shoulders, and white flowers on the lapel… she was beautiful.” That is how Uxa da Torre, a girl at that time, described how they took [Josefa] to the headquarters of the Civil Guard. According to peoples’ memories, in order to murder her they had to sit her down on a chair.
My aunt was a housekeeper in Ramal; there was a house there, I don’t know if you remember, and the owners left to Madrid and my aunt took care of the house.
She would go a lot into town. The falangists came, there was a kneading-trough and above that some stairs that went up to the attic. They shot at the door and blood appeared right away… And then they arrested her.
Manuel Eiras Barreiro, Josefa Barreiro’s nephew
They hid in that house over there; they were there quite a while and here there is (there was) a vine all across from here to up there. And forty thousand came here to the house to look for them, and even neighbors who came to spy to see if their clothes were being dried, eh? And they would come around here… even relatives… cousins, sons.. they were falangists. They even took my mother and my aunt away at night. But at night with a lantern and the others down there along the river we would work on very big farm that, at that time, was watered at night with a lantern because it was necessary to do this at night and to water you needed a lantern. One night at 2 a.m. they arrested them [my mother and my aunt] and they took them down there; my mother was pregnant… my deceased father and my uncle were hiding in the garden and they jumped over to another garden where there is a tall wall, and on top of that they could see everything.
You understand? They made them [my mother and my aunt] shout at my father and my uncle who would hear them up there. They spent a while there without saying anything until someone… [the witness points at his mouth] someone talked, and it was one night. I always remember that night! Because my grandmother, my mother, my aunt (making cornbread), and us (we were kids) playing soccer in front of the school—because now there are no people here, but at that time there were many children to play soccer with. In my house, there were four of us, and in that house there were five; Arangunde had six. And all of us would get together there. We were playing there until all the cars, a truck, and others arrived… it was the army. We fled running, each to his own house and right here, there at the entrance, my mother came out because they had heard all the racket… My mother suffered dizziness and fell right there, and they took them I believe for three days, I can’t remember. They took my aunt, my mother, and Aragunde’s mother. I can remember it as if it were today because my uncle… My father was my father, but my uncle was a bachelor and I was a kid and so he spent a lot of time with me. I remember he took me in his arms and said: “Look, I’m going to give you some advice: when you see a bird that’s captive, open a window and let it go, give it freedom because here we can never have freedom.” Those were the words that my uncle said to me.
I was told that when they executed them by firearm in Los Martices, they gave a blindfold to each one to cover his eyes, and my uncle and my father refused; they blindfolded their friend because he didn’t have the courage to endure that, but they [my uncle and my father] didn’t want one. That’s life and I was five years old.
Andrés Roo, José Ramón Roo’s son
From left to right, the news article on the execution of Luis Iglesias, José Ramón, and Juan Aragunde at this location of Os Martices. The editor highlights the “religious fervor” that the soon to be murdered discovered in their last moments. To the right of the article, Josefa Barreiro González from Carril when she still lived in A Torre with her sons Valentín and Julio, who were orphaned of their mother at the age of 6 and 4 respectively. To the far right, Juan Aragunde Alfonsín from Cornazo. Below, the letter Enrique Mariño sent his mother to bid her farewell moments before his execution. Enrique was from Padrón and lived in O Piñeiriño. He was a cobbler by profession.
To my mother
Today they are going to execute me by firearm; I’m not afraid. Mom, what I ask of you in this world is to look after Carmen who is good, she’s good, and will be good for you. I ask you provide her with a stall in the city square next to yours, don’t abandon her because she’s alone in the world and she doesn’t have a father or mother or any shelter other than yours. I’m not afraid. Goodbye forever
The house in Cornazo on Revelle Street, which belonged to Agustín Romero, a prominent man from Vilagarcía who was born in Cornazo. He made his fortune as an emigrant in Uruguay. Here behind a false wall, he hid Juan Aragunde and his comrades Andrés and Luis for six months, waiting for better and more peaceful times until a betrayal ruined it all. The three were executed by firearm at this location of Os Martices.
The burgundy house is the place where Josefa Barreiro González’ house was, the plaza of San Miguel of Trabanca Badiña. Today all of this is very changed. In fact, that house had only one floor. There she hid the young man Urbano Tarrío until he was discovered on 16 March 1937. Urbano hid in the attic, which he accessed with a hand ladder. They say that he was shot through the ceiling and his blood began to fall through the wood joints.
It was a day in February 1937 and they called me to go to school. I got up, ate my broth with corn bread; it was needed to “shake away the cold” according to my parents. I grabbed my chalkboard and ran toward my school in Sentín [a village close to Vilagarcía] and saluted the teacher with this litany: “Hail Mary Most Pure, good day. How are you? Arriba España!, Long Live Franco!, Long Live Christ the King and his saintly mother!” Meanwhile, my whole arm was extended, the palm of my hand wide open, standing firm, and I held the chalkboard with my left hand. After the fingernail and ear inspection, I sat in my customary place, my desk, if that’s what you can call two boards of pine two meters long and held together by a frame. There we sat and set our books.
The space had eighty square meters for eighty children, three blackboards, a shelf and a podium from which the teacher, behind his desk with a bundle of wicker twigs in his hand, watched us and was always ready to come strike us. That day religion class lasted till ten [in the morning]. We hadn’t yet sung the Lord’s Prayer, but we would at the end along with “Cara al Sol” [“Face to the Sun”: the Spanish fascist anthem].
We were happy because we hadn’t been thrashed by the wicker twigs. Religion didn’t worry me at all; I could recite “Hail Mary” by heart.
We had just sat down when the first shot went off, followed by many others that led to a general fight, which would only be the prelude of the “Littleness” of the event. The most surprising thing for us (we knew nothing of fire arms) was that kind of ratchet, which with its powerful teeth rattled without a pause. I came to know another kind of war during the first months of the insurrection. We would nervously wait at night for the representatives of the New Spain to knock at the door and come looking for my brothers to “give them a walk” [a sinister euphemism used by the fascists that meant to shoot prisoners]. That war wasn’t spectacular but it was full of terror. The song of machine guns and rifles made us turn our heads at school, even defying the teacher’s wicker twigs. He also looked toward Loenzo’s place—a ways away but close enough to be able to distinguish the abandoned house, an infinity of dark masses that, protected by a raised granary and other obstacles, fired against people inside who seemed to defend themselves well, judging by the two hours that the fight lasted. Their bravery in defending themselves was such that the besiegers—fifty of them made up of townspeople, Falangists, and the Civil Guard—considered calling in the army. But since they had to face the shame of being unable to take on so few, they resorted to gasoline. The straw took care of the rest. Some shots and everything went silent. What was happening now? Have the besieged surrendered? There, the “Two Spains” were represented: one that had always fought for freedom and human rights and the other that defended by fire and sword their centuries-old privileges. No understanding between the two was possible.
The end of the drama came when tongues of fire exited the windows and converted the house into a torch. It was a grey February day. At this moment, the teacher told us to go back to our homework. He closed the doors and windows I don’t know if out of fear or to spare us from the unpleasant sight of those who died inside the house. Once the class was calmed down, the teacher went to his house and returned dressed in his civic uniform. I only remember the bright strap and a revolver on his belt. His wife was with him, an excellent woman given her kindness while in charge of the class. The teacher left to save his civic honor and at the end of the morning we didn’t sing the “Cara al Sol,” but the Lord’s Prayer.
And this is how a group of four Republicans was killed. According to the townspeople, the victims were “El Gitano” [The Gypsy], two others from Vilagarcía, and Pilar, the woman who fired like a man. For two hours, these four held at bay over fifty “brave men” well armed with rifles, machine guns, and submachine guns in contrast to the four who—as was found later in the rubble—had two rifles, three revolvers, and the dynamite cartridges we heard explode. And the old people also tell that when the scorched bodies were carried to the cemetery, they could see that all of them had a hole in their head.
Whether it hurts us or not, this is part of the history of our Vilagarcía. I want to pay homage with it to those martyrs of anonymous tombs. What can we ask for the snitches and executioners who did this “little thing”? Only that God forgives them as we democrats did some time ago despite that we cannot forget.
Fragments from an article published in the newspaper La Voz de Galicia by Nicolás Barcala on 28 September 1988
A FREE WOMAN IS AN OPEN HOUSE
A free woman is an open house.
A female metal factory worker from the CNT is a refuge for fugitives.
An anarchist woman has a caring cabin in Cea.
Pilar Fernández Seixas from Trabanca was all that.
She was free, she was of the proletariat, she was an anarchist, she was a refuge
And she was a caring cabin.
She was murdered in February 1937.
She was a burnt down house with CNT members inside in February 1937
Just as her name remains for the memory of love
So do the names of the men for whom she cared
Rodrigo Berruete, Antonio Saianes, and Manuel Limeres murdered.
Free women we are and will always be an open home.
When they found them there they reported it, and Arzcum came with the car to get gasoline to burn down the house; they doused the house and then they burnt it (…) He got gas there at Consuelo Araujo’s gas station. They were in a barn and they went to the house; it was from there that they shot; I don’t know if they hurt a carabinero [part of the military], a civil guard or whoever the hell… I don’t know. And it was then that—I don’t know who told my dad—that they had killed themselves because from afar they heard “crack, crack, crack, crack” the shots inside, and it was taken for granted that they killed themselves because after being incinerated, he [my dad] said they shrunk to this size [the witness indicates with his hands a small size] and afterwards they picked them up and put them on the cart. The besiegers were from here and there were 250 from Pontevedra (…) They marched afterwards along the Obelisk [in the town plaza] (…) When they incinerated them it was quite an event (…) And they got a red thing and put it on the point of a bayonet and went to the city hall (…) I went there myself (…) The red thing was the Gitano’s belt, because they were dying to catch him; my brother was never famous, but the Gitano was.
My mom was a woman who after so much grief and so many things (…) She would tell me about her sons: My Manolo! My Isolino! (…) She was always doing that (…) What else could she do?
Amalia Limeres, Manuel Limeres’ sister
Pilar Fernández Seijo, “the mountain woman,” Manuel Limeres Ordóñez, Antonio Sayanes, and Rodrigo Berruete Alejandre “The Gypsy,” were murdered at this site—an old barn—on 16 February 1937.
They were anarchists except Manuel Limeres who was from the PSOE [the socialist party]. After the military coup in July 1936, they tried to defend Vilagarcía from the fascist onslaughts. They ended up escaping to the mountains of Xiabre and Lobeira where they had to hide from many fascist raids and assaults.
The last day of their life, hiding in this same place, they were surprised by gangs of Falangists, civic volunteers, the Civil Guard, and the army from Pontevedra and Vilagarcía.
They never saw the sun again. Hope ran out and their lives vanished.
Pilar was left-wing. She had those men hiding at home, she washed their clothes (…) out by Trabanca in those little houses, I was coming back from work at night and (…) they were running.
Then the Civil Guard showed up; there was also a snitch. There was a trap at Bagulleiro’s house, the entrance through here and through Carregal, those stables on the left (…) the Civil Guard surrounded the house. But, of course, when they realized there were four or five [Civil Guards] waiting down at the door, they escaped in that direction (…) You know who saw them? My poor deceased mom. Through a window she saw Pilar coming out in her undergarment, and they too running to escape to Loenzo and they hid inside a barn, but they found them there.
And after they were dead, they [the murderers] went all over Vilagarcía with flags.
Pura Freire, a neighbor of Pilar Fernández in Trabanca Badiña.
I wasn’t in the labor union. When the military coup was brewing; the war hadn’t gotten here yet, I found Monolo, “the Blond,” next to the city hall and he told me: “Belarmina!” Manolo was from the CNT [the anarchist labor union]. “Belarmina, why don’t you sign up?” I didn’t know what a labor union was, or communism, or anything. And I didn’t want to. There were several who did: Miguel, Porriño, one from the Ríos family, Otilia’s son, Luís “the Harry” who left to Venezuela, Amadeo Abalo, Luís o Gervasio, Otilia, “One-handed” Carmen, Blanco from Vilaxoán (…) Pilar hid them in her house and then they escaped to the mountain, and Pilar went with them (…) if she stayed, they would’ve killed her, and also if she escaped.
In the mountain they had a cave where they hid when the army went looking for them. Miguel told me this because, before when they took the herds of sheep and goats to graze (…) and it rained and they would get into the cave, rather deep and not very noticeable; and they hid there for a little while. Two brothers who were stonemasons would go there at night to fill them in; and they would carry notes to know how things were going. They were liaisons of the escapees in the mountain. Those brothers were caught one day and that same night were beaten to death in the police station.
I remember the Gypsy when they were killed. The Civil Guard was carrying pieces of his waistband. The Gypsy was burdened by stomach problems and he had a red waistband. When they killed them, behind [the barn] there were whole pieces of the waistband that hadn’t been burned. And they [the Civil Guard] carried those pieces on the tip of a bayonet, and they said: “Here we have the Gypsy’s waistband (…) we killed him for the coward he was.” I saw everything from what used to be the door of court, at the city hall. There was a crowd and people who cried; they were in tears.
To the left, a summons communicated in the newspaper El Pueblo Gallego for Antonio Sayanes (in the photo on the upper left) to report to the Navy Headquarters of Vigo. At the top right, a military march in the Ravella Plaza in front of city hall, just as had happened the day of the killing in Loenzo.
Below, Antonio Sayanes’ letter to his wife in which he foretold his ending. The cold and hunger, just as dangerous as those who persecuted, were demoralizing.
My Dear Wife:
I hesitate before writing you this farewell letter because I’m convinced that each time you read it you’ll suffer; I wish I could avoid this. But in case Fate hinders me from saying goodbye to you in person, my heart feels the ardent desire to do it in writing. I also suffer doing this and I suffer more for you and our daughters, knowing you’ll be left helpless, than for myself fearing for my miserable life. I’m writing while I’m still free; that relative freedom enjoyed by those who like me are persecuted like wild animals, knowing that as soon as I fall in the hands of my persecutors I’ll lose my life. But this ending is inevitable due to my lack of resources and refuge to stop these long and cold winter nights. In addition to those who persecute me, my big enemies are hunger and cold, which one cannot outwit without the means to do it.
Destiny is taking me there and I hope that when I fall I will be buried in the cemetery where our son rests.
Upon leaving this life, I’ll do it with great sorrow and also with some remorse knowing that during the time your life was linked to mine, I didn’t always provide you and our daughters the amount of bread that you deserved and needed. And this was due more to my bad luck than to a lack of will and love on my part.
Upon knowing this misfortune, I fear that your already fragile heath will break down. That would be tragic because it is now that you need strength the most to fight for your life and raise our beloved daughters.
When you find out about my demise, tell my father and also my sisters. Soledad’s address should be in my wallet on a card from Amancio Antelo. Ask them [my sisters] to try to get you a ticket to leave if you can leave the young ones with someone; then you can arrange for them [our daughters] to join you. And who knows, someday you all may even be happy.
I think the ship-owner I worked for won’t refuse giving you the money he owes me.
I won’t take more of your time. I beg you to look after, as always, our poor daughters and that they remember their miserable father from time to time.
Accept my last kisses and know that for all of you these are the last thoughts of