Looking Back

April 29, 2009

Looking back on our week in Spain, I am trying to figure out what date was the most important for us and for the people we met. The two that stick out the most in my mind are 1) the connection we made between Marcos Burgos and the archive in Alcala and 2) the cocktail night with the Descendants of Exiles.  Both were groundbreaking events in our research trip.  Connecting Marcos Burgos with the archive is something that would not have happened had it not been for our presence in Madrid that week.  Now, something that was once in danger of being forgotten will be kept safe in the archive forever.  The night with the Descendants was all about sustainability.  The Descendants didn’t think that anyone else cared about what happened during the war, much less 5 Americans.  During the cocktail, we helped them understand that the memory of the war and the years following will not die with them.  Our work there, and this website will keep it living on.


Looking Back

March 17, 2009

Looking back on our week in Spain, I was trying to figure out which date was most important during our trip. One I came up with was the connection we helped make between Marcos Burgos, the son of an executed republican captain, and the archive in Alcala. Read the rest of this entry »


Bringing it Back

March 17, 2009

Looking back on the whirlwind week that was our research trip, I can easily think of the countless things we have brought back with us to the US. We took photos of battlegrounds, prisons, statues, and memorials. We heard personal testimonies from descendants of exiles, children of soldiers, and a civil war veteran himself. We received books about the history of the war, Read the rest of this entry »


Thanks for the Memory

March 15, 2009

What a week this has been. Everyday, we were so busy with interviews, meetings, visits to landmarks, and commemorations. It really felt like a month’s-worth packed into a week. But I wouldn’t have had it any other way. We were busy for a reason: all that we did in this week was to build a foundation for further research. It might not be the five of us returning to Spain to follow the clues left by Franco’s dictatorship; it might not be anyone from William and Mary. Whoever it is, though, will know exactly what we’ve done and won’t repeat it. They’ll have the names of Maria Luisa Fernandez, Ceferino Alvarez, Elena Diaz, Carmen Serrano, Veronica Sierra, Marcos Burgos, etc. Read the rest of this entry »


International Brigades: Pioneers in their time and ours

March 14, 2009

Throughout this trip, I have experienced a massive evolution of thought, impressions, and knowledge regarding the International Brigades and the men who constituted their ranks. Many of the misconceptions that I had were destroyed by firsthand accounts and visits to sites of memory; however my one and strongest belief about the Brigadiers, which was the reason for my original interest in the Brigades, not only survived the trip, but was strengthened tenfold. Read the rest of this entry »


Post-Madrid Perspective

March 14, 2009

Not until leaving our final reception with the descendants of the exiles of the war, did I realize how special the work that we are doing really is. While speaking to one of the descendants, my attention was brought to the fact that students our age don’t learn about the Spanish Civil War at school and they don’t possess the knowledge which we have about the war’s circumstances, results and influence on the present. Read the rest of this entry »