Simon Bolivar

Simon Bolivar is known as the George Washington of South America because he liberated the countries that are now known as Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Panama, Peru, and Venezuela from Spain.

Simon Bolivar was born in the city of Caracas Venezuela in 1783. Both of his parents died while he was young and so he lived with his grandfather. Simon at the age of 16 would go to school in Spain he was able to do this because he was of Spanish decent. Six years later he would go on a trip to Aventine Hill in Italy which legend says where Romulus and Remus founded the city of Rome. He then vowed to free his home land from Spain and for the next two years he would visit the United States and France to learn about ideas of liberty. When Napoleon dethroned the king of Spain in 1808 South America was effected and then in 1810 the city of Caracas overthrew the viceroy that Spain had placed over them. You probably have heard of Patrick Henry’s speech of Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death well Simon Bolivar also had one of these speeches at a national congress. The speech went like this “Let us lay the cornerstone of American freedom without fear. To hesitate is to perish!” However the movement was then destroyed by a natural disaster. A earthquake hit the city Caracas destroying building and homes and leaving 15,000 to 20,000 people dead. After the earthquake people still loyal to Spain tried to take over Caracas. This endangered the lives of the patriots who lived there so Simon Bolivar and other patriots left for New Granada or present day Colombia. In 1813 Simon Bolivar invaded his hometown and was victorious. But the royalists were still fighting and by January of 1818 Simon Bolivar had only 4,000 troops, and then by March he had lost half of them. His army then crossed the Andes and went into New Granada and at Boyaca defeated the royalists there. Then in 1820 Simon Bolivar was made president of the Republic of Colombia but fighting resumed four months later in March of 1821. In the final battle against the royalist Simon Bolivar with his army crossed back over the Andes and defeated the royalist at the battle of Junin. Simon Bolivar would later be exile from Bolivia while the country was in political termole. Simon Bolivar resigned from politics in 1830 and a short time later died possible of tuberculosis at the age of 47. His body was later moved to Venezuela but not until 1942 for many people it was a thank you to him that was long overdue.

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