The Gaucho Museum Ricardo Güiraldes: Pulpería, General store and Bar
La Blanqueada is an old building over 150 years old. The counter is equipped with the traditional bars which separated the owner from his customers – only trusted regulars were allowed access to the interior of the pulpería. La Blanqueada features wax figures playing cards at the bar.
The men are dressed in the traditional gaucho pants or chiripa, botas de potro (made from the skin of the horse´s hind leg, similar to a boot but with the toes exposed) and red kerchiefs on their heads, a typical attire of the times of the Governor Rosas (between 1829/1832 and 1835/1852).
This is one of the most unique gaucho collection of their uses and customs.
Foundation of the Gaucho museum
It was founded and built by the government of the province and it opened in 1938. It takes the name of Ricardo Güiraldes to honor the novel Don Segundo Sombra, published in 1926.
The Museum was founded and built by the government of the Province of Buenos Aires.
It was inaugurated in 1938 and was named after the poet and writer Ricardo Güiraldes, the author of the novel “Don Segundo Sombra” which was published in 1926. Güiraldes died in 1927 and was buried in the local cemetery, as was the main character of his book, Don Segundo Sombra.
This institution provides insight into the country´s past, particularly in connection with the gaucho, his habits, traditions, lifestyle, attire and riding gear and focuses on the gaucho´s contribution in building the country´s greatness and folkloric tradition.
Built in honor of Ricardo Güiraldes, the items exhibited at the Museum portray the personality and literary works of this great writer. The material exhibited at the museum also covers other aspects associated with the town´s history.
The Flour Mill – The Shed and Horsewear room
Alongside the pulpería stands an old flourmill or tahona dating back to 1848. Made entirely of wood, it was used to grind wheat and originally belonged to the Luján Guard.
It was used to obtain flour to make bread. The shed and horsewear room was named after Aniceto Melo, a famous raw hide braider from San Antonio de Areco.
The shed houses a colonial carriage and horse carts as well as the frame used to hang the ring for the traditional horse “ring races”.
The House fo the Gaucho museum Ricardo Güiraldes
The house resembles a fort insofar as it is surrounded by a moat and access is controlled by a drawbridge.
When immigrants ventured into the boundless pampas in times gone by, they built their farm houses following this pattern as a means of defense against the Indians.
This was the origins of the estancias where the gauchos were working.
The house reproduces an 18th century farm house with its welcoming corridor, its two side wings, whitewashed walls, tiled roof and low wrought-iron window railings where all these gaucho collection is preserved.
Various items of silver as well as representative paintings decorate the walls of the other rooms
Rural labor, countryside themes, horseback rides, bonfires, mate rounds and other images summarize perfectly the countryside feeling.
There are daily Full Day Private tours to this gaucho museum and to the traditional historical town of San Antonio de Areco: Tour to Gaucho Museum
The Gaucho museum hall pays homage to the gaucho and his attire and saddle gear. There are exhibits of stirrups, bridles, spurs and cowbells. Also ponchos, boleadoras, lassoes, chifles, leather trunks and photographs of local gauchos.
The Ricardo Güiraldes Rooms reflect how the first silversmith settled in Buenos Aires at the end of the XVI century. A similar handicraft to the one in Upper Peru was developed in this area in the XVII and XVIII centuries. There were many Spanish and Portuguese silversmiths.
When Argentina was organizing itself as an independent nation, cattle breeding began to be intensified. Thus, the symbols of the Argentinian country appeared, one of them is the gaucho in this gaucho museum.
There are daily Full Day Private tours to this gaucho museum and to the traditional historical town of San Antonio de Areco: Tour to Gaucho Museum and Colonial Town
The paintings collection
These paintings are the work of Uruguayan Pedro Figari, who met Ricardo Güiraldes’ father and after a long friendship, they ended up being part of the Güiraldes family furniture.
The music, the dancing, the singing, the paintings and other artistic work, apart from literature, can be felt while touring around the museum. These may have been the feelings experienced by those who have taken care of it, still do and will keep an eye on it every day of the year in the future, as if it was their own home.