Presidential Connections: MyHeritage.com user finds family relationship to former Argentinian president, Juan Peron
Such was the case with Juan Domingo, a MyHeritage.com user from Argentina. He took the time to speak to us last week.
Juan’s interest in genealogy went from casual to more serious when he got an inkling that he was a relative of the former Argentinian president, Juan Peron. By building his tree – through talking to relatives and conducting documentary research – Juan went on to discover that the former president was a descendant of his grandfather’s brother. He told us about the relationships surrounding the discovery:
“My grandfather Anibal Enrique Peron was responsible for trading posts around the region. Position given by General Peron personally came through him, because of the confidence they had in each other, the relationship of faith and trust. My father is the godson of the President’s wife, Evita, and it made a difference because problems around the birth needed constant attention, which was expensive.
“Evita was the one who asked my grandmother in person to name her her son as the former president Juan Domingo Peron, since she and the general could not have children. That’s why my father also carries the same name as the general.
“My life changed since my parents decided to name Juan Domingo Peron as well in 1978. In full military style the de facto government banned many things in those days, in fact in those years 30,000 people disappeared. My parents risked their lives and mine by fighting to name me as the former president. I think I was lucky that the government was focused on preparation for the World Cup in 1978, but I can’t be sure.”
Juan began his research with MyHeritage just a few months ago. With all the information he has collected he built a modest tree of 50 members. In addition to discovering more about his family’s presidential links, he’s been able to contact and learn more about relatives from other regions of the country. “I found the site easy to use,” said Juan. “The interconnections you can find through Smart Match open a lot of doors.”
On his ancestors, Juan Domingo said “The Peron family came from the island of Sardinia, until my great-grandfather Mario Tomas Peron travelled to Argentina in 1831. He married a lady called Anna McKenzie Hughes, the daughter of British immigrants. Their son, Thomas Liberato Peron (1839-1889) became the grandfather of the future President, as well as himself becoming a Professor of Chemical and Forensic Medicine.”
Juan also had some comments on the general state of genealogy in Argentina. “It’s quite tough here, because we are a melting pot for which in most cases the relatives got here by boat.” He urged people to be persistent, however: “Do not give up; you may think your research is getting nowhere when in fact you’re on the edge of a discovery.”
Thanks to Juan Domingo for sharing his with us. If you want to share a story from Spain or Latin America, please email firstname.lastname@example.org