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History of Cartajima

Diputación de Málaga

History of Cartajima

Though no definite historical proof exists to support the theories sustained in this regard, there are testimonies which point to the discovery of Hellenic remains in the graves uncovered during the laying of foundations for a building in Las Peñuelas. According to records of the area, human remains and coins were found here.

Apart from the above account and a few legends, no further details of Cartajima’s past exist, though if we consider its history to be linked to that of its neighbouring villages, we can conclude that the Arabs must have had a significant influence here. One thing of which we can be certain is that the area was conquered by the Christians and that its Moorish coverts or moriscos were subsequently expelled.

The village distinguished itself during the War of Independence by struggling heroically against Napoleon’s troops in a period dominated by the figure of the guerrilla Andrês Garcîa, who carried out an attack on the Governor of Ronda.

Fernando 7th gave the village its name in 1814, and throughout the 19th century, it underwent significant economic development as a result of the exploitation of local iron deposits, leading to the building of a cannon and cannonball factory and the village’s nickname of "Cádiz la chica" or Little Cádiz.

The phylloxera epidemic which destroyed Andalusia’s vineyards in the late 19th century is still recalled in Cartajima as if it had happened only yesterday, since the village’s heavy dependence on agricultural activity saw it plunged into deep crisis as a result.

The local terrain is of a predominantly mountainous nature, descending sharply in the south (the Genal basin). As a result, the area is teeming with locations of ecological interest. The solitary grandeur of Almola peak and the majesty of La Majada del Centinela are particularly impressive. The village itself, tucked away in the Sierra del Oreganal, is well worth a visit too. Its eminently Arabic design has a contrast in the Iglesia de la Virgen del Rosario, with its rectangular nave and wooden ceiling structure. Its narrow streets are lined with whitewashed stone houses with slightly-inclined rooftops of the two and four-slope variety.