"… in Bonilla Ignacio behaved very brave and well; in the beginning he pushed back more half a dozen of soldiers who tried to come up to him, but having been hurt slightly, his cousin and brother-in-law Eduardo (Agramonte Piña), much at the beginning of the action, left the field to accompany him and to take him.”

Perhaps the first reference is this in the military order in which Ignacio Agramonte  Loynaz has been mentioned during the first war for the independence of Cuba against the Spanish colonialism (1868-1878).

The story corresponds to the Camagüey´s son, as Ignacio, Salvador Cisneros Betancourt, entire patriot and who became in two occasions President of the Republic of Cuba in Weapon.

The action was the first one freed by the mambi´s hosts that a few days earlier, on November 4th, 1868, had been thrown to the redeeming swamp, helping the clarinet´s call of Carlos Manuel de Céspedes in his sugar mill Demajagua, on October 10, in the east of the island.

The combat between the Camagüey´s forces, with predominance of revolutionary young people of the city of Port-au-Prince (today Camagüey), and the Spaniards commanded by experienced general Blas Villate - Count of Valmaseda - happened in a point known as Ceja de Bonilla, to a few kilometers of the town of Minas.

From this warlike clash, Agramonte initiated a constant ascent in the military chore that led him to showing the grade of Major General of the Liberating Army and being one of the principal political leaders from the insurrection up to his death in combat on May 11, 1873 in the Jimaguayú pasture, to the south of Port-au-Prince.

Then young Ignacio had only 31 years of age.

He was born on December 23, 1841 in a large house in the central part of the Town, opposite to the church and convent of the Merced, and he was the first one of five children of the marriage formed by lawyer Ignacio Agramonte Sánchez Pereira and Maria Filomena Loynaz y Caballero.

Ignacio embraced the same career of his father, but scarcely had time to develop it because the pro-independence clamor received it in his bosom with much vehemence, the same one he felt for the love to Amalia Simoni Argilagos, a young woman of Camagüey with whom he married a few weeks before joining to the war and had two children.

The young man became a general and imposed an iron military discipline in the troop that he was commanding in the Camagüey, discipline that he was respecting as the first one, and with order he created a fearsome force for the colonialist ones.

José Martí called him “Diamond with kiss soul”, and Fidel Castro of “unbeatable hindrance” before the discord, the sedition and the disorientation, and his soldiers simply knew him as “The Mayor”.

He differed, also, in his personal and patriotic loyalty. He demonstrated it in eternal allegiance that he pledged to his dear one, and to the headquarters of the Revolution, to the president Céspedes.

Martí remembered him this way: "But he was never so big, not even when his enemies profaned his corpse, like when, on having heard the censoring that there were doing of the government said to his officials, anxious to see him king for the power as it was for the virtue, he stood up, alarmed and haughtily, with height that has not been seen till then, he said these words:“ I will never allow that people murmured in my presence of the President of The Republic”.

The struggle for the independence saw him rearing up repeatedly before the proper adversities of a warlike contest with not professional troops insufficiently armed opposite to a well-formed, experienced and better-equipped army.

An example: in 1870, the actions had drooped for the Hispanic operation known by “Crescent of Valmaseda”, and the situation was very difficult for the pro-independence ones besieged by the absence of warlike resources and the threat of presentations to the peninsular ones.

In spite of such a things state, the perspectives were good for the liberating field, and for it Agramonte and his secondary ones were chased with fierceness by numerous hostile columns, but them without managing to surround and to defeat them.

Seeing the force with which the revolution re-arises in Camagüey, the colonialist authorities choose to dissuade Agramonte from persisting in the war and emissaries are in charge to the rebellious field.

There the well-known phrase of the mambí chief arose when they asked him with what he counted to continue the hostilities: "With the pride of the Cuban!”

And he continued the war, which came some weeks later to the memorable action of the rescue of the rebellious brigadier Julio Sanguily, prisoner of a troop several times superior to the mambi troop, to which he attacked with a load guided and led by the proper Agramonte, the general of the first line.

Translated by Linet Acuña Quilez