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Where is Robert Hale Merriman?

«Corbera d'Ebre al centre de l'objectiu 1938-2018»

«Corbera d'Ebre al centre de l'objectiu 1938-2018»

04/04/2018

Cultura

The Research Group on Didactics and Heritage (DIDPATRI) is organizing an activity on April 6 and 7, to pay tribute to the figure of Robert Hale Merriman, commander in the XV International Brigade in the Civil War, in Corbera d’Ebre.

On Friday, the session will begin with a conference about the Lincoln Battalion, by Anna Martí, and the presentation of the documentary “Els darrers dies de Robert Hale Merriman”. On Saturday, April 7, DIDPATRI, with the collaboration of the City Council of Corbera d’Ebre, will remember the American commander with a commemorative plaque by the sculptor Mar H. Pongiluppi, in Poble Vell, in Corbera d’Ebre. The ceremony will take place at 12.30 noon.

Over this last year, an interdisciplinary team formed by researchers, archaeologists and local scholars, coordinated by DIDPATRI, tried to find the remains of Robert Hale Merriman, major in the XV International Brigade in the Spanish Civil War. These tasks were carried out in the area of Corbera d’Ebre, where the major was believed to be killed, but there were no results, therefore the researchers are still thinking: where is Merriman?

Robert Hale Merriman was born in 1908 in California (USA) in a Scottish family. He graduated in Economics at the University of Berkeley and he joined the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps. In 1935 he left to study the Soviet farm model, and while he was living in the Soviet Union, the Spanish Civil War started. In 1937 Merriman went to Spain, where he trained other volunteers and escalated positions up to the Chief of the XV Brigade. The longest version says he was taken as prisoner in Corbera d’Ebre and was killed on April 2, 1938. Some years later, his wife, who lived in the United States, wrote the book American Commander in Spain: Robert Hale Merriman and the Abraham Lincoln Brigades.

At the end of the year, a copy of the commemorative plaque will be laid at the University of Berkeley (California, USA) to respond the demand of the Rector, Carol Tecla Christ, since Merriman was a student and lecturer in this institution.

The research study carried out by DIDPATRI in some of its studies on the Spanish Civil War is a unique model of public archaeology and research action: from research to socialization of knowledge on the bases of didactics and memory practices.

 

 

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