Ramón Verea

Biography of Ramón Verea

The Galician Ramón Silvestre Verea García was born on 11 December, 1833, in Esmorís, parish San Miguel de Curantes, Spain, to Juan Verea Filloy and Florentina García de Porto.

In 1848, following the wish of his uncle to for a priestly career, the young Ramon enrolled the Seminario Conciliar in Santiago de Compostela. Verea stayed in the seminary for six years and appears immediately as a great student, achieving remarkable results in philosophy, Hebrew, etc. Verea's curious mind however always tried to investigate the reason behind everything, thus his numerous questions could not get the appropriate answers from his religious teachers. In some moment his faith was hesitated, and he realized that he is not going to devote his life to the religion.

In 1855 Verea shipped to Cuba, to begin his real life adventure. There he started as a school master and teacher in Sagua la Grande, near de Colón, wrote two novels and writes as a journalist for newspapers like El Progreso.

There was a description of Verea from 1862 from his friend, the journalist and writer José Manuel Pérez Moris: "...a young 28 years old, tall, tanned, slim waist and wide chest, facing clear, large eyes, alive and intelligent, happy character, determined, restless and frank... ".

Already in his student years Verea was interested in making simple devices that could have a useful application. During his stay in de Colón, Cuba, he devised a machine for folding newspapers. Later, when he already lived in US, as he hadn't sufficient financial resources to build the apparatus, he sold the patent to a speculator in New York.

In 1865 Verea moved to New York, USA, looking for better luck. There he started as a journalist in a biweekly Spanish-language newspaper. At the same time, Verea kept his interest in inventions and in machinery, and in the end of 1860s he returned to the city of Havana, where he tried to establish himself as a representative to introduce machinery and appliances of modern invention in Cuba. The project, despite not reaching the benefits Verea expected, helped him to save some money and to obtain a good experience.

Verea returned to New York and in 1875 established an Industrial Agency for the Purchase of Machinery and Effects of Modern Invention. It seems he remained keen of journalism all the time and in 1877 he became a director of the newspaper El Cronista.

Hearing the complains of his Spanish friends and insinuations of his American friends, that the Spanish have fallen behind in the historical process of scientific and technical progress, that the Spanish had no capacity to adapt, that his time had passed, he decided to prove the opposite, creating a very interesting direct-multiplying calculating machine (see the calculating machine of Ramón Verea).

in 1879 Verea returned for some time to his home country. In his village in Curantes he found everything remains the same, no progress since his childhood and his parents are already dead. He visit Santiago also Coruña and returned to the US.

Back in the city of New York, in 1882 sets up a modern printing press named "The polyglottis". In January 1884 he founded and runs a monthly illustrated magazine, El Progreso, which was printed on his press.

In the early 1895, shocked by the US policy of intervention in Cuba and Philippines, Verea moved to Guatemala, where he wrote several books, "La defensa de España", "La cuestión de Cuba", etc.

In 1897, Verea, single and lonely, mmoved to Buenos Aires, Argentina, in the hope to meet several Galician intellectuals and some relatives who lived there. In that city he founded the biweekly journal El Progreso, and continued to publish and act as a journalist.

Ramón Verea died from an infection of the lungs in the capital of Argentina on 6 February, 1899.