The Testament of Manuela Mier: Miner and Azoguera from Oruro, 1805




Azogueras, colonial mining, Oruro, women


This work aims to highlight women’s role in Andean colonial mining based on the transcription and commentary of Manuela Mier's will. Using the case of Manuela as example, our intention is to identify a group of women who worked as “azogueras” (quicksilver workers), “trapicheras”, and mine owners during the colonial period, activities which were usually ascribed to men. Notarial protocols represent an important source of documents to analyse the role of women in all areas, including colonial mining, as it will be addressed in this article.



Author Biography

María Concepción Gavira Márquez, Universidad Michoacana de San Nicolás de Hidalgo. Morelia, Mexico

Full Profesor, Department of History. Level II Member, Sistema Nacional de Investigadores de Mexico.