Considered the George Washington of southern South America, General José Francisco de San Martín was the chief figure in liberating Argentina, Chile, and Perú from Spanish control. Born in Argentina in 1778, San Martín led a life of military greatness before relinquishing his authority to Simón Bolívar - who would continue the further liberation of northern and central South America. Named "El Padre de la Patria" (Father of the Fatherland), San Martín relocated to Europe in his later years and died on August 17, 1850.
His greatest act of courage was the Crossing of the Andes between 1816-1817, in which San Martín led a faithful Army of the Andes from Mendoza to Chile - crossing over the rugged and dangerous peaks of the Andes Mountains. Following this ordeal, San Martín and his soldiers won the decisive Battles of Chacabuco and Maipú.
For those who have visited Argentina, you should be familiar with General San Martín. He graces the majority of the nation's central plazas - riding upon his horse and often pointing towards the west. Most cities in Argentina claim a San Martín Park, San Martín Avenue, or San Martín Plaza.
Tania and I have been fortunate to visit such landmarks from north to south during the past decade. From Parque San Martín in Salta to the great Museo de San Martín in Mendoza; from the tomb of San Martín in Buenos Aires to the quaint village square of San Martín de los Andes in Patagonia. Here are just a few photos that represent this national hero and his victorious life:
Monumento a San Martín: Casa Rosada, Buenos Aires
Cerro de la Gloria: Parque San Martín, Mendoza
Monumento a San Martín: Córdoba Capital
Manzano Histórico: Tunuyán, Mendoza
Parque San Martín: Mendoza
Plaza San Martín: Buenos Aires
Plaza San Martín: San Martín de los Andes, Neuquen
Tumba de San Martín: National Cathedral, Buenos Aires