Uruguay Key Dates

1516    Juan Díaz de Solís entered the Río de la Plata by mistake and thus discovered the region.
1520    The Portuguese captain Ferdinand Magellan cast anchor in a bay of the Río de la Plata at the site that would become Montevideo.
1680    The Portuguese, seeking to expand Brazil’s frontier, founded Colonia del Sacramento on the Río de la Plata, across from Buenos Aires.
1726    With the founding of San Felipe de Montevideo, Montevideo became the port and station of the Spanish fleet in the South Atlantic.
1776    The establishment of the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata, with Buenos Aires as its capital, took place. Montevideo was authorized to trade directly with Spain instead of through Buenos Aires.
1807    A 10,000-member British force captured Montevideo in early 1807 and occupied it until that July, when it left and moved against Buenos Aires.
18 May 1811    Artigas’s army won its most important victory against the Spaniards in the Battle of Las Piedras.
June 1814    Montevideo surrendered to the troops of Buenos Aires.
1821    Portuguese Brazil annexed the Banda Oriental as its southernmost Cisplatine Province.
25 August 1825    Representatives from the Banda Oriental declared independence from Brazil and its incorporation into the United Provinces of Río de la Plata.
4 October 1828    Uruguay became an independent state.
18 July 1830    The constitution was approved, after having been ratified by Argentina and Brazil. It established a representative unitary republic–the República Oriental del Uruguay (Oriental Republic of Uruguay)
1836    The first political groups, known as Colorados and Blancos because of the red and white hatbands, were formed.
1843-52    The Great War centered on the nineyear-long siege of Montevideo.
1903    José Batlle y Ordóñez became president.
1910    Civic Union of Uruguay (Unión Cívica del Uruguay–UCU) and the Marxist-inspired Socialist Party of Uruguay (Partido Socialista del Uruguay–PSU) were founded.
1931    Gabriel Terra became president.
1939    The badly damaged German battleship Graf Spee, cornered by a British naval force was blown up and scuttled by its own crew just outside the harbor.
1943    Juan José Amézaga became president.
1952    The new constitution was approved by plebiscite in 1951 and went into effect in
1952.
1962    Raúl Antonaccio Sendic, formed the National Liberation Movement-Tupamaros (Movimiento de Liberación Nacional-Tupamaros–MLN-T), a clandestine urban guerrilla movement.
1967    General Oscar Gestido became president.
27 June 1973    President Bordaberry dissolved the General Assembly and replaced it with the Council of State.
1981    Retired Lieutenant General Gregorio Alvarez Armelino became president.
November 1999    Jorge Batlle became president.
March 2005    Tabaré Vázquez became president.

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