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Simón Bolívar was a Venezuelan military leader who fought against the Spanish Empire in South America. He became an influential political leader in achieving independence in Latin America and was known for establishing Gran Colombia. In countries like Venezuela and Ecuador, Simón Bolívar Day is celebrated every 24th of July to honor El Libertador.
See the fact file below for more information on Simón Bolívar or alternatively, you can download our 21-page Simón Bolívar worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
Early and Personal Life
- On July 24, 1783, Simón José Antonio de la Santísima Trinidad Bolívar y Palacios was born in Caracas, New Granada. He was born to a prosperous family of gold and copper miners.
- In 1799, after his parents’ deaths, young Simón went to Spain to study. He then married Maria Teresa del Toro in 1802. When they visited Venezuela, his wife contacted yellow fever and died in 1803.
- After the death of his wife, Bolívar went back to Europe and was acquainted with Napoleon Bonaparte. By 1807, he returned to Venezuela, the same time when Napoleon’s brother, Joseph, was named the King of Spain and its colonies.
- Bolívar joined the Venezuelan resistance movement against the new rule.
- In 1810, a Supreme Junta against the Spanish government was formed, which initiated the Venezuelan War of Independence. Bolívar, who was then working as a diplomat and colonel, convinced military leader Francisco de Miranda to take part in the revolution. When Miranda signed a capitulation agreement, Bolívar and other leaders arrested him and turned Miranda over to Spanish Captain Domingo de Monteverde.
- In February 1813, Bolívar started his campaign to take back Venezuela from New Granada, now Colombia. As part of the campaign, Bolívar issued the famous War to Death decree allowing Latin Americans to kill all civilians born in Spain who were not supporting the cause of independence. It was in response to massacres executed by Spanish troops. As a result, Bolívar liberated Caracas but it was later regained by the royalists.
- On May 14, 1813, Bolívar’s Campaña Admirable began, which later resulted in the establishment of the Venezuelan Second Republic. He was hailed as El Libertador but civil war in Venezuela persisted.
- After the fall of the Second Republic, Bolívar fled to Jamaica and to Haiti seeking support from Europe and the United States for his revolutionary cause.
- In the end, Haitian president Alexandre Pétion provided Bolívar with money, weapons and troops.
- After he defeated the royalists, Bolívar established the Third Republic of Venezuela.
- On August 7, 1819, his victory against the Spanish troops in the Battle of Boyaca liberated New Granada.
- His feat at the Battle of Boyaca was considered a pivotal moment in the South American wars of independence. It provided Latin American revolutionaries economic and human resources to win the war.
- That same year, Bolívar materialized his dream to unite Spanish America by helping with the establishment of Gran Colombia, which was then comprised of Venezuela and New Granada. With the formation of Gran Colombia, Bolívar actively participated in liberating other colonies including Quito in 1822, Peru in 1824 and Upper Peru (present-day Bolivia).
- In the course of his military career, Bolívar fought over 100 battles. From 1819 to 1830, he served as the president of Gran Colombia, which included territories of modern-day Colombia, Peru, Ecuador, Venezuela, Panama, western Guyana, northwest Brazil and Venezuela.
- Later in 1830, Bolívar’s union collapsed after he imposed a dictatorship in 1828. Gran Colombia was dissolved and replaced with republics of New Granada, Ecuador and Venezuela.
Death and Legacy
- Simón Bolívar, known as The Liberator, succeeded in uniting many South American territories through his revolutionary acts against the Spanish Empire. He established Gran Colombia in an attempt to form a union like the United States but internal factions feared dictatorship, which later collapsed Bolívar’s dream.
- In 1928, Bolívar escaped an assassination attempt with the help of his mistress, Manuela Saenz, who was also a revolutionary leader.
- On December 17, 1830, before his voluntary exile to Europe, Bolívar died in Santa Marta, Colombia at 47 years old due to tuberculosis.
- Bolívar is known as one of the great heroes of South American independence. The country of Bolivia is named after him, as well as the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. Moreover, both nations currencies are named Bolivian Boliviano and Venezuelan Bolívar.
- A number of statues and monuments honor his contribution to Latin American freedom.
- Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez was a strong follower of Bolívar’s philosophy. He was the one who renamed Venezuela as The Bolívarian Republic of Venezuela and modified the official flag to include an additional star that represents Bolívar.
- Today, Simón Bolívar Day is celebrated in many Latin American countries.
Simón Bolívar Worksheets
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about Simón Bolívar across 21 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use Simón Bolívar worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about Simón Bolívar who was a Venezuelan military leader who fought against the Spanish Empire in South America. He became an influential political leader in achieving independence in Latin America and was known for establishing Gran Colombia. In countries like Venezuela and Ecuador, Simón Bolívar Day is celebrated every 24th of July to honor El Libertador.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- Simόn Bolívar Facts
- El Liberator
- Mapping Gran Colombia
- Latin American Revolutions
- Bolívarian Facts
- Defining Terms
- Hail to the South
- In Bolívar’s Name
- Simón Bolívar Day
- Point of View
- Contemporary Politics
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Link will appear as Simón Bolívar Facts & Worksheets: https://kidskonnect.com - KidsKonnect, July 28, 2018
Use With Any Curriculum
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