The reason I wrote this post is because my class in Norfolk (Emerald class) are learning about Colombia for their topic. I am really happy that my friends are learning about Colombia so I wanted to help them by telling them about Colombia’s history. Last week we went to a place near where we live that told you all about the life of someone called Simón Bolívar and I learnt lots of things about Colombia. There was also a really cool tree there to climb on.
Before 1499, there were lots of tribes living in Colombia. They didn’t all live together, they lived separately. They believed different things and they spoke different languages and some hunted their food and travelled around following after the animals they hunted.
In 1499, some Spanish explorers arrived in Colombia on boats. The head explorer was Christopher Columbus but it was some of his friends who actually came. They built Santa Marta as their first city.
The Spanish saw that lots of the tribespeople had gold and emeralds and jewels. They wanted to find the gold city and take all the gold and jewels back to Spain. The Spanish beat all the tribes and called Colombia theirs. They named it New Granada and they built more great cities like Bogotá that is now Colombia’s capital city.
For 300 years Spain ruled Colombia (New Granada). The Spanish called in thousands of slaves from Africa, so Colombia was then a mix of 3 different people, the Spanish, the tribes and the Africans, and the Spanish had all the power.
But some of the people were not happy with what the Spanish were doing. One of the people who was not happy about it was called Simón Bolívar. He got himself an army of rebels and called war on the Spanish. He wanted Colombia to be in charge of itself instead of Spain ruling it.
Simón Bolívar took down the Spanish and in 1821 he made a new country called Gran Colombia but it was much bigger than Colombia is now because it covered all of Colombia and Panama, Ecuador and Venezuela and some bits of Peru and Brazil.
But later on he fell ill from an illness in his lungs. They sent a doctor to him but when the doctor arrived he was already too ill so he died. We went to the place where he died and it is now a Simón Bolívar museum.
When he died he thought that he still hadn’t done his mission. His mission was to make Gran Colombia a single country that was really big and powerful but when Simón Bolívar was dying all the people were planning to break it up into smaller counties (like it is now).
I think that quite sad that Simón Bolívar fought all his life but then when he died he still felt bad.
When you walk around Colombia you see statues everywhere and museums about Simón Bolívar and lots of parks and streets named after him so he must be a very important person to Colombia. People think he is a hero and that he freed Colombia from the Spanish.
I might not have wrote down everything about Simón Bolívar but I think that what I have written is true and I wrote this completely on my own.
And in case you don’t already know, we’re now trying to do something amazing and really help children in Colombia. Check out our fundraising page: EverettsInColombiaFundraising