Juan Carlos Esteban

The documented historical truth, 70 years after

urprisingly, since April 14, 1937 the Uruguayan State, with the participation of the Ministry of Foreign Relations, confirmed officially, through the courts, the French origin of Carlos Gardel before declaring his mother Berthe Gardés heiress of his son, named indistinctly, in the succession file, as Charles Gardés or Carlos Gardel.

The oriental historians and some Argentines should refer to that source or have made an appeal at the right time, if they didn't agree with the judicial decisions of both countries. It's time to finish this never-ending story of questioning each documented answer systematically.

In 1967 —thirty-two years after the death of El Zorzal—, “Avlis” resuscitated the relatives of Tacuarembó who in the inchoate succession proceedings, either in Argentina or in Uruguay, had “disappeared”.

A fable was arranged then, starting from a false declaration of Gardel himself who later on November 7, 1933 denied in his will, acknowledged either by the Argentine courts as by those of the Oriental Republic of Uruguay.

On the other hand, no member either of the families Bentos de Mora or Escayola, claimed any right to the inheritance, before or now. Obviously, neither did they appear to require a DNA test.

In 2004 I sent the documentation received from France about Marie Berthe Gardés' record, since her birth in 1865 until her arrival in Argentina in 1893 with her son Charles to the Academia del Tango in Uruguay, care of a beloved friend. With those documents it is demonstrated convincingly that, except for the trip to Venezuela in 1875 and her return to Bordeaux in 1883, she was not out of France. Therefore she never was in Uruguay. In consequence it will be necessary to find another nurse for the boy of Tacuarembó.

In fact, in the work that we shall publish in 2005, jointly with the teacher and writer Monique Ruffié de Saint-Blancat and Mr. Georges Galopa, we shall make thoroughly known the documentation on the French antecedents of Carlos Gardel.

Furthermore, four years before Gardel forged his nationality, he was summoned by the Consul of France in our country H. Samalens, on November 17, 1915, to join the Army. The French embassies during the first world war (from 1914 at 1918) were assimilated to “military cantons” and the order was published, in Buenos Aires, in “Le Courrier du Río de La Plata”.

Immediately Gardel got, temporarily, an Argentine document —as born in the country- that he used to travel to Brazil as if he were “43 years old, married”, and returned to the country in the steamboat Re Vittorio, on October 24, 1915 (See Record of the Center of Latin American Migratory Studies C.E.M.L.A.).

Automatically, the Secretary of war Francés Gallieni, on February 23, 1916 declared “fugitives” all those French born in France or abroad under age 50 that didn't fulfill the obligatory enlistment also summoned in Argentina.

According to the rules, for the French legislation, Gardel was a deserter when he disobeyed the order of general mobilization N7 (art. N3) enclosed in the Official Newspaper of the French Republic and also published by the Embassy in Argentina.

Since then Gardel decided to travel to Europe with false documents, making believe he was Uruguayan.

To end this analysis it's worthwhile to say that in the book to be published with the members of the Association Carlos Gardel of Toulouse, an exhaustive analysis of the holographic testament of 1933 is included. The latter was accepted by the Uruguayan courts under the Tratado sobre Derecho Civil Internacional of Montevideo in 1889, article 44, where a complete calligraphic study made by Dr. Raúl Torre of the R. W. University of Los Angeles, United States, is enclosed confirming the following: «The document, from beginning to end, is authentic. The original doesn't show scrapes, neither chemical nor mechanical amendments, not either signs of altered states or of psychological compulsion being perceived».

Therefore, it just confirms what was ruled then by the judges Dr. H. Dobranich of Argentina and Dr. Francisco Jurdi Abella of Uruguay.

But the most surprising thing is the discovery made by Dr. Raúl Torre in the Notarial File of the Colegio de Escribanos in Buenos Aires, where he checked that, since 1935, no researcher ever consulted its records nor was requested the book where this document is filed.

In consequence, the testament was refuted with neither juridical or scientific rigor, based on the copies that those who make up stories, opportunists and amateurs made circulate.