Memory

Vila Nova de Cerveira
Description

It is a monument commemorating of victories in the Peninsular War, but more than that, it is a symbol of resistance of Minho. The February 15, 1809, the French troops commanded by General Soult tried to enter in Portugal through Cerveira, crossing the Minho River. Face of bravery of Cerveira's people, had had to retreat and turned out to enter Portugal by Chaves area, Trás-os-Montes.
The memory was erected in honor of all the heroes of the Peninsular War, but one of these braves stands out: the veteran colonel, is now 77 years old, Gonçalo Coelho de Araújo. Gonçalo Araújo was the one who organized weapons and militias to defend the frontier near at this village when the French already have the support of the Fortress of Goyan, in Galicia, on the other bank of the River. On the other side a professional, trained army and weapons to the height. On this side, a people with only three cannons - that left over from the War of the Restoration - and a rudimentary workout, but full of courage. Almost miraculously, the Cerveira's people is able to prevent the invasion of the French army.
Also a woman showed courage: Resina, wife of the governor of Forte de Lovelhe. Resina, knowing the French stationed at the fortress of Goyan, right in front of the Forte de Lovelhe, stood up, even in one's underwear. Sent a gunner load a piece of artillery and pointed it to Goyan. The shot collapsed the corner of the sun where the French were, who eventually leave the house in fear of being hit again.
The first stone of this monument was thrown a hundred years later, on February 15, 1909 A few months later was inaugurated the monument of Memory with pomp and circumstance and entitled to outdoor mass, procession and music. The importance of the Memory demonstrates the respect and pride that the people of Cerveira feel for its past.

Location: Vila Nova de Cerveira
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