Mu–oz-Rivera Day

Mu–oz-Rivera Day

July 17
Luis Muñoz-Rivera was born on this day in 1859 in Barranquitas, Puerto Rico. A statesman, journalist, and patriot who devoted his life to the cause of Puerto Rican independence, Muñoz-Rivera was instrumental in obtaining Puerto Rico's charter of home rule from Spain in 1897 and served as secretary of state and later president of the first autonomist cabinet. However, when the United States put an end to his country's short-lived experiment with home rule, Muñoz-Rivera resigned. He eventually went to live in the U.S., where he continued to advocate Puerto Rican independence by publishing a magazine to acquaint North Americans with the plight of his homeland. He died in 1910 just before the passage of the Jones Bill, which gave Puerto Rico a large measure of self-government.
Muñoz-Rivera's birthday is a public holiday in Puerto Rico. His hometown of Barranquitas holds a three-day crafts fair every July that is timed to coincide with the birthday anniversary celebration. The fair tries to keep traditional skills and crafts alive by passing them on to the young.
CONTACTS:
Puerto Rico Tourism Company
135 W. 50th St., 22nd Fl.
New York, NY 10020
800-223-6530 or 212-586-6262; fax: 212-586-1212
www.gotopuertorico.com
Library of Congress
101 Independence Ave. S.E.
Washington, DC 20540
202-707-5000; fax: 202-707-8366
www.loc.gov
SOURCES:
AnnivHol-2000, p. 119
GdUSFest-1984, p. 218