15 Mar, 2021 @ 18:30
1 min read

Historical memory: Barcelona university enlisted to document Spain’s Valley of the Fallen victims

1200px Spa 2014 San Lorenzo De El Escorial Valley Of The Fallen (valle De Los Caídos)

FAMILIES of the victims buried at the Valley of the Fallen will soon receive information on their loved ones thanks to a new collaboration between the government and the University of Barcelona.

The agreement between the office of the Prime Minister of Spain and the University of Barcelona is aimed at recording details of over 40,000 bodies reportedly buried in a mass grave on the site.

In a letter released by the Ministry of Culture, the government reached out to the University, specifically Dr. Queralt Sole, an expert in the history of mass graves in Spain.

Initially the program will research details of the bodies whose exhumation requests have already been received by the families of the victims.

1200px Spa 2014 San Lorenzo De El Escorial Valley Of The Fallen (valle De Los Caídos)
The monument at the Valley of the Fallen (Valle de los Caídos)

Dr. Sole will compile any information of the specific person including any biographical information available, any criminal or cultural history and any official documentation relating to the entry into the grave.

The information will be given to the next of kin to the victim as well as being documented in a comprehensive collection of details of as many of the bodies as possible to be entered into the historical registry.

Dr. Sole, Associate Professor of Contemporary History at the university has been a leading researcher on Spain’s hidden mass graves since 2008, and has produced some of the most in depth work in the field ever recorded.

Specifically, Dr Sole’s work has also involved the documentation of thousands of bodies claimed during the Spanish Civil War before they were moved to their crypts after exhumation.

“We approached Dr. Sole due to his historical training and his extensive research career.” said a government statement.

“He has a deep knowledge of existing document collections on this matter, as well as all the tools necessary to handle the available archival sources with ease.”

James Warren

"James spent three years spent working as a junior writer at various English language newspapers in Spain before finding a home at the Olive Press. He previously worked for many years as a bid writer for an international motorsports company. Based in Cordoba since 2014, James covers the southern Subbetica region, northern and inland Malaga and the Axarquia area. Get in touch at [email protected] with news or trustworthy tips that you would like him to cover in these areas"

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