This museum offers a journey through the worlds of Argentina’s indigenous peoples, the era of Spanish conquest and the establishment of colonial control, the May Revolution and 19th century Porteño society at the time of Argentina’s independence, the liberator San Martín’s crossing of the Andes and other episodes from Argentine history.
Exhibits include the historic flag that General Manuel Belgrano carried into battle in 1812 and which was recovered years later behind a painting in the parish of Macha, Bolivia, where it had been hidden by Belgrano’s army to save it from the enemy. The flag was donated to the museum by the government of Bolivia in 1896. Also on display is the sky blue fringed flag known as the Sucre flag.
Other exhibits of enormous historical value include a piano that belonged to Mariquita Sánchez de Thompson and which was used to play the first composition of what would become Argentina’s national anthem, and the curved sabre of José de San Martín, which the general carried in the battles for independence and is considered a symbol of the liberation of South America from colonial control. Paintings include Cándido López’s oil paintings that document the War of the Triple Alliance, in which the artist also served as a soldier.
The collection is completed with a wide range of diverse documents, paintings, and historic objects, including a cigar box that belonged to independence hero Mariano Moreno and a version of the national shield painted on iron that was used at the entrance to the famous Assembly of Year XIII - a meeting called by the Second Triumvirate governing the young republic of the United Provinces of the Río de la Plata on October 1812.