Arturo Prat

Chincha Islands War

War of the Pacific

Agustín Arturo Prat Chacón (April 3, 1848, near Ninhue, Chile – May 21, 1879, Iquique, Peru) was a Chilean lawyer and navy officer. He was killed in the Battle of Iquique, during the War of the Pacific.

During his career, Prat had taken part in several naval engagements, including battles at Papudo (1865), and at the Abtao (1866). Following his death, his name became a rallying cry for Chilean forces, and Arturo Prat has since been considered a national hero.

Prat's name is commemorated on numerous plazas (squares), streets, buildings and other structures in Chile. His name has been commemorated by four of Chile's major warships, including a USS Brooklyn class cruiser in the 1950s, a British County class destroyer from 1983 to 2006, and most recently a Dutch Jacob van Heemskerck class frigate transferred to Chile as Capitan Prat in 2006. One of Chile's Antarctic research facilities, Arturo Prat Station, and the Chilean Naval Academy, Escuela Naval Arturo Prat are named after him. His portrait appears on the 10,000 Chilean peso bank note. Also, in 1984 Arturo Prat University was founded, with its main campus in Iquique where his heroic deed took place.

Arturo Prat, the oldest of five brothers, (Ricardo, Rodolfo, Atala Rosa and Escilda Aurelia) son of Agustín Prat del Barril and Rosario Chacón Barrios, was born at the San Agustín de Puñual Hacienda in south-central Chile on April 3, 1848. The name Prat is of Catalan origin (not to be confused with the English 'Pratt'). He entered the Naval Academy on August 28, 1858 at the age of 10 years thanks to one of the scholarships created by President Manuel Montt, another son of Catalan immigrants. There were two scholarships per province: one for Arauco went to Prat, and the other went to Luis Uribe. Both had the same benefactor, Don Jacinto Chacón (uncle of Arturo and stepfather of Uribe), resulting in the two youths considering each other as brothers.

This page was last edited on 25 May 2018, at 13:53.
Reference: under CC BY-SA license.

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