Irulegi Irratia


  • Recording date: 1994-12-06
  • Owner: Euskarabidea-mediateka
  • Main theme: Contraband.
  • Permission to query: Free
  • Permission to publish: Limited
  • Sound quality: Normal
Towns Dialects Maps
Non assigned locality
Piece Time Summary
A01 00:00:00
Introduction: many laborers bought livestock themselves and then they would smuggle it over the other side of the border to sell it.(03.00”) How he began with the smuggling: He was working in a house and he began to sell eggs undercover along with his boss. It used to take them two hours to reach Luzaide/Valcarlos with the basket on their shoulders. Then they started smuggling horses. He knew about horse-smuggling as a young man. They bought the horses in Donapaleu and they would always sell in Hegoalde. They always took the route at night. There was no problem until you reached Donibane. It could be any kind of horse. They smuggled seven or eight at the same time and they would usually do that twice a week.(15.00”) He was informed on once. He was in a hut and the guards were sent there. What took place.(19.25”) The informers were often paid.They had special signals. The colors and stars on the horses. In the mountain it was tough work but they didn’t get confused or lost.Once over the border the deals were not always the same. Sometimes too, they had to turn back and sell the horses in Donibane. (25.15”) At that time you could make some money with the peseta. Those that were caught they lost what they had but for someone who had a solid place in the business, even though it was dangerous, it was worth doing it. The people who worked at the smuggling got paid depending on the risks taken.They needed a guy to take over the horses, because it was necessary to have someone ahead to make sure the road was clear. What happened to him.(31.50”) As well as being young, you had to be clear that you could really do the job without fear, because sometimes there was not even light from the stars.He knew that one day he would be caught and when that day came he fled to America.In order to do that work it is necessary to know the livestock.Smuggling was especially rife in the war years. After that it gradually eased off.When they were with the horses they would return without anything else. The deal was not completed at the same time. They were paid some days later. For them it was the same to be paid in pesetas or in franks. The peseta was not changed in the bank. That was another type of smuggling.In his time, as well as horses there were many other types of goods being smuggled. Some lost their lives at that business and many had frightening and dangerous moments.(47.00”) Goodbye.
Track Time Listen to file
II-047a-A 47:43
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