Baby Rattle Buried With War Mum, Son Found 80yrs Later

Archaeologists have found this pristine baby’s rattle with the remains of a mum executed during the Spanish Civil War some 80 years ago and her son, now 83, has been tracked down.

Catalina Munoz was executed by a Francoist firing squad in 1936, and had her baby boy’s rattle with her when she was marched against the wall.

Credit: CEN/Sociedad de Ciencias Aranzadi
The rattle that was found

Eight decades later, a team of archaeologists uncovered the rattle when they found the mother’s remains in a mass grave under a children’s park in the central Spanish city of Palencia.

Archaeologist Alfredo Gonzalez-Ruibal said that the rattle “was like new and did not look like it dated all the way back to the Spanish Civil War (1936 to 1939)”.

The team also found 10 other items from the period, including a comb, a crucifix and a laxative tin.

Gonzalez-Ruibal said that Munoz was 37 years old when she was executed and came from the village of Cevico de la Torre, about 30 kilometres from Palencia.

She had four children at the time of her death, including an eight-month-old baby son.

Credit: CEN/Sociedad de Ciencias Aranzadi
The remains of the executed woman with the rattle

She was arrested in August 1936, a month after the Spanish coup of July 1936 which marked the beginning of the Civil War.

Her husband Tomas de la Torre was in jail when Munoz was executed, charged with killing a supporter of Francisco Franco during a fight.

Archaeologists managed to track down their children and discovered that the baby boy who owned the rattle is still alive and is now 83 years old.

However, Gonzalez-Ruibal explained: “The first thing he said was that he did not want to know anything about it.”

He added: “This is the most terrible thing of that period. The effects of that war 80 years ago are still very much with us.”


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Story By: Ana LacasaSub-EditorJoseph Golder, Agency: Central European News

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