Aims and Hopes

Since returning to England, following seven years working in Argentina, I have become increasingly interested in the migration of English and Welsh-speaking people to Argentina in the nineteenth century.

In the accompanying web pages, my first aim is to publish genealogical information usually available only in Argentina, or at the National Archives, London.

My second aim is to describe something of the founding of pioneering agricultural colonies in Argentina, and list the names of the people who joined them.

Today's British community in Argentina are still aware of their origins in the British Isles and elsewhere, and many people I have met are deeply knowledgeable of their family history. But there are many others, whose family once lived in Argentina, who would like to know more about the time spent there.

My hope is that this website will continue to increase in size, as more material comes to hand for publication.

Introduction to the subject matter

As early as 1806, the English were arriving in Buenos Aires in small numbers, principally as businessmen and traders. They were welcomed for the stability they brought to commercial life in the newly emerging nation. As the century went on, many more English families with capital came in increasing numbers. They bought land to develop the potential of the Argentine pampas for the large-scale growing of crops. They founded banks, developed the export trade in crops and animal products and imported the luxuries that the growing Argentine middle classes sought.

Many of the Irish came to the country as sheep-farmers, others to serve as agricultural labourers, leaving behind the poverty of rural Ireland. They populated large districts of the Province of Buenos Aires, leaving their strong mark on the character of Argentina.

The Scots arrived in contingents from 1825, on vessels such as the 'Symmetry' that sailed from Scottish ports. They founded great ranches, established Presbyterian churches, raised large families, and through hard work became wealthy.

The Welsh founded an idealistic Welsh-speaking community in Patagonia in 1865, hoping by its remoteness to preserve their language and customs. The founding members arrived on board the 'Mimosa' to a bleak welcome on an inhospitable shore. The settlement was slow to become established through uncertainty and lack of knowledge of the climate of the place where they had chosen to live. But through persistence a successful community was established in Wales beyond the seas.

About the author

the author Born in Argentina in 1935, I spent most of the following years in England, until first returning to Argentina in 1978. I worked as a priest in the Anglican Diocese of Argentina from 1978 to 1981 and later from 1990 to 1997. This gave me an excellent insight into the extent of surviving Anglican church records, over which latterly I have been the diocesan archivist. I now live in York, England.
I am the author of several books and pamphlets, which you may see on another page.


Some of the data on this website is in the public domain. However, as author, I (and others, where stated) reserve the copyright to the forms of listing and presentation of the information.

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Jeremy Howat, January 2005

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