At the beginning of the 19th century, after nearly 300 years of
Spanish colonial rule, wars of independence broke out in Mexico,
Central and South America. These revolutions led to the formation
of the 18 Spanish-speaking nations we see today in Latin America.
The British Library holds a wealth of material relating to the
history of Spanish American independence: books, manuscripts, maps,
newspapers, personal letters, political pamphlets, music scores,
stamps, state papers and other official documents.
This feature focuses on the campaigns for independence in Spanish
America during the 1800s and the 1820s, and the creation of the
contemporary nation-states in the region. It also discusses the
involvement and impressions of British witnesses.
Text by Iona Macintyre. Curated in association with the
Americas Collections at the British Library.