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Isabel Calvimontes de Agrelo

Other names/titles:
Gender: F
Ethnic origin: White

Biographical details

She was born in Sucre on 19 November 1790. In 1804 she married Dr Pedro José Agrelo, who worked in the church. In 1809 they moved to Buenos Aires and she became involved with a women's pro-independence group. She gave money for arms in 1812. She followed her husband whose career took him on several pilgrimages, ending in misery in Montevideo in 1846. Renowned for her beauty, she was painted by Carlos Enrique Pellegrini. The picture is in the Museo Histórico Nacional. She returned to Buenos Aires where she died on 20 December 1855. (Sosa de Newton, 115)

The daughter of Dr. José Calvimontes, Fiscal de la Audiencia de Charcas, she married Buenos Aires-born Pedro José Agrelo, who studied law in the Universidad de San Francisco Javier and was influenced by liberal and pro-independence ideas. They moved to Tupiza, Bolivia after the revolution of 1809. She accompanied her husband at home and in exile throughout his turbulent career. She took part in the Sociedad Patriótica organised to gather resources to buy arms, which were acquired in 1812. (Urquidi, 157-158)

In 1812 she was among a group of women who sewed uniforms for the patriot army. Several of these offered to buy weapons and they asked that their names be inscribed on them. Their accompanying note (below) was reproduced in the Gaceta Minist in June 1812. (Mitre, Obras completas, VII, 16-17)

She was born in Chiquisaca on 19 November 1790, the daughter of José Calvimontes, the attorney of the Audiencia of Charcas and Florencia Trujillo. She married Pedro José Agrelo on 14 August 1804, from Buenos Aires who had studied in Chuquisaca. They lived in the province of Tupiza until 1809, returning to Buenos Aires where they enthusiastically supported the independence cause. She joined the Sociedad Patriótica and attended meetings to collect funds to buy arms for the patriot troops from 1812. Agrelo had a turbulent time during the independence struggles and she assisted in the Martín Alzaga conspiracy. They were separated several times and suffered exile but she accepted her lot with resignation. She died in Buenos Aires on 20 December 1855. (Carranza, 108-110)

Life Events

Born 1790She was born in Sucre on 19 November 1790.
Married 1804She married Dr. Pedro José Agrelo.
Other 1809She moved to Buenos Aires.
Other 1809She moved to Tupiza, Bolivia.
Other 1812She donated money to buy arms for the independence cause.
Other 1846She was in Montevideo.
Died 1855She died in Buenos Aires, 20 December 1855.


Sosa de Newton, Lily, (1986), Diccionario biográfico de mujeres argentinas

Urquidi, José Macedonio, (1918), Bolivianas ilustres, heroinas, escritoras, artistas, Tomo I

Mitre, Bartolomé, (1940), Obras completas de Bartolomé Mitre

Carranza, Adolfo P., (1910), Patricias argentinas


Letter: Carta


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