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Antonino Reyes (1785-1845)

Biographical Information

Soldier and administrador, Reyes began his military service at the age of 19 in the government of Juan Manuel de Rosas. He initially served the doctor Manuel V. Maza and later the colonel Garretón y Pedro. In 1833, he accompanied Rosas on the desert expedition that secured more territory for settlement by pushing the Indians off the land. When Rosas returned to the governorship of Buenos Aires in 1836, Reyes sent dispatches from Rosas to the cavalry. During that year, he became one of Rosas' secretary and remained in that role until Rosas' fall in 1852.

He was captured in Luján where he was accused of criminal activity during his years under Rosas. The court found him guilty and sentenced him to death. Venancio Flores, the president of Uruguay, argued that the sentence be commuted and Reyes be sent into exile. Flores' pleas went unfilled but Reyes escaped from prison and fled to Uruguay. Even when his sentence was overturned, he remained in Montevideo until 1895 where he collaborated with the historian Adolfo Saldías, who was writing the revisionist Historia de la Confederación Argentina that would praise Rosas for his defense of the nation against the foreign incursion of Britain and France.

Reyes died in Montevideo on February 6, 1897 at the age of 84.

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Description of Archival Collection
(MSH/SCH 4012-01 to 4012-83 and 7001-01 to 7001-06)

The archive of Antonio Reyes (about 60 items) includes 53 letters to the historian, Adolfo Saldias. Many of these letters include mention of Juan Manuel and Manuelita de Rosas. There are are drafts of Antonino Reyes' memoirs covering the origin and description of the "Santos Lugares" encampment and another document titled "La entrega de Avellaneda Governador de Tucumán."

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