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La Puebla de Arganzón (Municipality, Castilla y León, Spain)

Last modified: 2016-04-09 by ivan sache
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Presentation of La Puebla de Arganzón

The municipality of La Puebla de Arganzón (514 inhabitants in 2010; 1,887 ha; municipal website) is part of the Treviño Enclave, totally enclosed within the Province of Álava (Basque Country), 90 km km of Burgos. The municipality is made of the villages of La Puebla de Arganzón (capital) and Villanueva de la Oca (8 inh.).

La Puebla de Arganzón was resettled on the site of the disappeared village of Arganzón, mentioned for the first time in 871. Arganzón comes from old Basque argaitzun, "a bright place". Located on a strategic place on the road of Álava to Burgos and Madrid, and watching the bridge over river Zadorra, the fortified village was fiercely disputed between Navarre and Castile. Granted a municipal charter in 1191 by King of Navarre Sancho VI the Wise, the village was conquered in 1200 by King of Castile Alfonso VIII. Since then, La Puebla de Arganzón and the rest of the Treviño enclave have remained under the rule of Castile; however, La Puebla de Arganzón never belonged to the neighboring Treviño County for which the enclave is named. The village belonged to the northernmost domains of the Velasco family, Constables of Castile and Dukes of Frías, who kept them until the suppression of the feudal system in 1811.

In 1940, 95.4% of the inhabitants of the Treviño Enclave voted for the transfer to Álava Province, but Franco overruled the results of the referendum, claiming that the enclave historically belonged to Province of Burgos. Another referendum was overruled in 1958. In 1998, 68% of the inhabitants of the enclave voted again for the transfer to Álava Province, which was rejected by the Government of Castile and León. The Statutes of the Autonomous Community of Castilla y León state that a transfer to the enclave would require approbation by Province of Burgos and by the Community of Castilla y León, and a special Law passed by the Spanish Parliament. In the 1980s, the Government of the Basque Country applied at the Constitutional Court that this Article of the Statutes is unconstitutional, to no avail.
The issue is still unresolved. On 9 March 2010, the Government of Álava Province officially recalled the 12th anniversary of the referendum and asked for the incorporation of the Treviño Enclave to Álava Province (Diario de Noticias de Álava, 9 March 2010). As expected, the President of the ruling Popular Party in Burgos rejected the claim, asking for the respect of the Statutes of Castilla y León, and declared the debate "closed and sterile" (El Mundo, 9 March 2010).

Ivan Sache, 24 April 2011

Symbols of La Puebla de Arganzón

The flag and arms of La Puebla de Arganzón are prescribed by a Decree adopted on 11 September 1997 by the Burgos Provincial Government, signed on 22 September 1997 by the President of the Government and published on 1 October 1997 in the official gazette of Castilla y León, No. 188 (text).
The symbols are described as follows:

Flag: Quadrangular, with proportions 1:1, yellow with a white cross. In the middle is placed the municipal coat of arms in full colors.
Coat of arms: Gules a castle or port and windows azure supported by two lions argent over waves argent and azure. The shield surmounted with a Royal Spanish crown.

Ivan Sache, 24 April 2011