135TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE BIRTH OF OSCAR EFRÉN REYES June 13, 1896-June 13, 2021



On the eve of commemorating another year of the birth of Don Oscar Efrén Reyes, illustrious historian, journalist and teacher from Baños, I consider it most appropriate, as a tribute, to transcribe a few lines about the name of the land where he was born, Baños, taken from his work: Baños, desde sus orígenes al Cabildo (Baños, from its origins to the Cabildo).

“Name of Baños de Agua Santa”:
In indigenous language, the primitive denomination of Baños, was that of “Ipo”, word puruhá..4
When the Spanish conquerors began to exploit and get to know this region, they simply called it “pueblo
region, they simply called it “town of Tungurahua”. Rarely did they
rarely called it by its old name of “Ipo”.

As the “town of Tungurahua”, it became part of the numerous “encomiendas” that, soon after the Spanish conquistadors
“encomiendas” that, immediately after the conquest, were assigned to the famous Captain Diego de Torres, in
Captain Diego de Torres, in enormous territorial extensions of Ecuador,
mainly in the valleys of Patate, Chambo and on the slopes of the Tungurahua volcano,
of the Tungurahua volcano.

But years later, the region became better known. Y,
discovered its thermal waters, or healthy “baths”, the primitive name of “Ipo” and the
of “Ipo”, and that of “town of Tungurahua”.

With these last denominations it already appears in the documents and references of the rest of the
of all the rest of the Colony, from the end of the XVI century on…

When the Dominican missionaries began to enter the Amazonian regions, they decided to
Amazonian regions, they determined Baños as their main station, and there they
established a Hermitage to the Virgin, calling the new population, which they were attracting and
and fomenting, People of the Holy Spirit. It was the year of

  1. But this denomination did not prosper. And both the Ermita de la Virgen, as well as the Pueblo del Espiritu Santo
    the Pueblo of the Holy Spirit and the entire region where they were located was only
    known only by the name of the seat of Los Baños.

The thermal waters, then, numerous and of varied temperature, and the miraculous effects on healthy and
miraculous effects on the healthy and sick, imposed the name, which subsists to this day, indissolubly
date, indissolubly linked to two of the irrecusable realities that determined the Spanish
determined by the Spaniards: Baños de Tungurahua, a region that is included in the
in the upper Pastaza, from its formation in Las Juntas del Chambo and Patate,
to the initiation of the Ecuadorian Oriente itself, the marvelous Country of Cinnamon.
wonderful Country of the Cinnamon.


4 Dr. Silvio Luis Haro: The archaeological wealth of the province of Chimborazo. In El Comercio de Quito:
May 18, 1947. “

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