By Jonathan C. Brown
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Extra resources for A Brief History of Argentina, 2nd Edition
Two or more groups might band together for warfare but otherwise kept to themselves. According to the first European missionaries who attempted to convert them to Christianity, the chieftains did not have a great deal of authority in the hunting bands, where fistfights between individuals sufficed to settle disputes. In battle, the warriors were merciless to enemy warriors and incorporated captured women and children into their bands as slaves or family members. Peoples of the Pampas and Patagonia In the expansive prairies that presently make up the eastern and southern provinces of Argentina, small bands of hunter-gatherers predominated.
Colonial policy forbade the enslavement of indigenous persons except in unusual circumstances, so wealthy Spanish families often purchased African slaves for household work. They sought women, in particular, as cooks, nursemaids, house cleaners, and laundresses. Spaniards purchased males to serve in livery or the families’ urban businesses. Merchants and artisans bought male slaves in small numbers for carrying merchandise, baking bread, and learning the rudiments of a craft. Urban 40 The Colonial Río de la Plata slaves in Buenos Aires and Córdoba had relatively greater freedom to mingle on the streets and formed associations among themselves based on their many different African languages and origins.
These herds rest in the pastures of Salta around eight months, and in selecting this locale one should observe what I said at the outset about . . the illegal acts of the owners [of the pastures], who, although in general they are honorable men, can perpetrate many frauds, listing as dead, stolen, or runaways, many of the best mules of the herd, which they replace with local-born animals . . not suited for the hard trip to Peru. For every herd, two droves of horses are necessary; one to separate and round up the animals, and 4 reales a day per man must be paid to the owners, even if each one rides 20 horses, crippling them or killing them.
A Brief History of Argentina, 2nd Edition by Jonathan C. Brown