Friday, August 17, 2012

The Spanish Civil War

María Josefa and José Manuel
Spain, about 1936

I've had a copy of this photo for a long, long time, but I've been ambivalent about posting it on my blog.  The little girl is my mother-in-law, María Josefa, and the boy is her first cousin, José Manuel.  They were very close growing up, since their parents were two brothers who had married two sisters.

My mother-in-law was born in 1934, during the Spanish Civil War.  Her father and uncle were both carabineros stationed in Navarra, Spain (on the French border) during the war.  The children grew up in a military atmosphere, during a very nasty war. After the war, Franco was dictator until  the 1970s.  Both brothers became Guardia Civiles, the very symbol of the right wing fascist power under Franco's rule.

My husband with his parents (including María Josefa)  and
Tio José Manuel in Madrid (standing), Spain May 2012

After discussing this photo for a while with my mother-in-law, I realized that she didn't mind me posting this photo.  In fact, both cousins mention this photo a lot when we get together in Spain.  Although it bothers me to see the guns and uniforms, it is how they grew up in wartime.  I don't know if they were members of the Falange, or just had costumes because they were too young, practically babies when this photograph was taken.  But it is a real slice of European history to see this photo.

Click this link to read more about my husband's grandfather's military career in Spain: 

Copyright 2012, Heather Wilkinson Rojo


  1. I understand your hesitation to publish this picture but if you regard it as a "sign of the times" it is part of history. As such it is a valuable picture.

  2. We can't judge history using the yardstick of today. Many people have lived through some horrificly turbulent times. Who's to say what was right or wrong? Maybe it was easier for the children to accept their daily lives by feeling a part of it. We will never really comprehend what it was like to live in such fear. This photo says it all, epecially to those who will listen.