To the ends of the Earth: European Tablewares in El Progreso, Galápagos (1880-1904)

Author(s): Fernando Astudillo; Ross W. Jamieson

Year: 2017


In 1878 Manuel J. Cobos founded a large-scale agricultural operation on the island of San Cristóbal, Galápagos. A merchant from the Ecuadorian coast, Cobos’ El Progreso operation, with 300 labourers at its peak, produced sugar, cane alcohol, leather, and a variety of other agricultural products exported to the city of Guayaquil on the Ecuadorian mainland. His home was several days sailing from Guayaquil to San Cristóbal, and 8 km uphill by oxcart or on horseback to the interior of the island. Despite being in one of the more remote locations from Europe on the planet, excavation of Cobos’ 1880s or 1890s household midden revealed a wide variety of luxury goods from Europe and the United States. His reputation as a brutal hacendado, living in a house of little architectural distinction, seemingly contradicts his ceramic tablewares, in the latest fashions from France, Belgium, and England.

Cite this Record

To the ends of the Earth: European Tablewares in El Progreso, Galápagos (1880-1904). Fernando Astudillo, Ross W. Jamieson. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Fort Worth, TX. 2017 ( tDAR id: 435209)


Ecuador Galápagos Islands Plantation

Geographic Keywords
Canada North America

Temporal Keywords

Spatial Coverage

min long: -141.003; min lat: 41.684 ; max long: -52.617; max lat: 83.113 ;

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 311