Category Archives: History

Basque Fact of the Week: John Adams’s Basque Adventure

It was 1779 and John Adams and his sons were on their way to Paris with the goal of establishing a commercial treaty with Great Britain and ending the Revolutionary War. On the way, however, their ship was battered by storms and they limped their way into Spain. After some debate and discussion, Adams and […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Basque First Names

I’ve delved into my genealogy a bit, scouring the priests’ books that document births, deaths, and marriages in each little town. Going back centuries, the names are all too familiar: Pedro, Jose, Domingo, Juan for the men; Josefa, Maria, Manuela, Magdalena for the women. Once in a while, there will be a Bartolome, or an […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Selma Huxley Barkham, Basque-Canadian Historian

Today, it is well accepted that the Basques were early visitors to the coast of what would be known as North America. They established sites along the coast of what is now Newfoundland to process the whales they hunted and return the final product to Europe. With the local Native Americans, they created pidgin trading […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Julio Eiguren, the Basque-American Spy

As so strongly depicted in “Fighting Basques,” an initiative by the Sancho de Beurko Association, Basque-Americans have always played an important role in the armed services of the United States. They served in all branches of the military and served their country, often the adopted country of their immigrant parents, with honor and distinction. However, […]

Joanes 4: Traganarroo’s Revenge by Guillermo Zubiaga

Episode IV, Traganarroo’s Revenge: It is a period of civil war. Rebel ships, striking from a hidden base, have won their first victory against the evil British Empire. Joanes, aided by Rebel spies, managed to steal secret plans to the Empire’s ultimate weapon. Pursued by the Empire’s sinister agents, Joanes races home aboard his magic txalupa, […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Etxekoandre, the Mother of the Home

Happy Mother’s Day! In honor of all of the moms out there, this Basque Fact of the Week is about the Etxekoandre, or the Mother of the House. Women have historically held a higher position in Basque society than in many other places, leading some to argue that pre-Christian Basque society was matriarchal, or, at […]

Basque Fact of the Week: The History of the Basques in the West

Since at least the time of the Spanish conquests, Basques have been a feature of the American West. Basques were a big part of the Spanish armies that rolled over South America, Mexico, and southwestern United States. They came later as well, after the Carlist Wars, after the gold rush of the mid-1800s, and in […]

Basque Fact of the Week: The War of the Bands

It’s the late 1300s. The Castilian Civil War just ended and families in the Basque Country are jockeying for political power in the vacuum left behind. Old feuds that have simmered for centuries ignite. Families build towers to fortify their lands and their surroundings. The aide (or ahaide) nagusiak, the leading kinsmen, gather strength. War […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Paulino Uzcudun, the “Basque Woodchopper”

My dad’s favorite sport to watch was boxing. I never asked him why (so many questions were never asked…) but I always assumed that it was because, of the sports on our American TV, boxing was the most straightforward, something he didn’t have to grow up with to understand, unlike American football. However, I recently […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Trees in Basque Politics and Religion

The tree of Gernika is easily the most famous tree in the Basque Country. Once the gathering site where important decisions were made and kings had to take oaths to preserve Basque liberties, it has remained an icon and cultural symbol of the Basque people. However, it is not the only important tree in the […]