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The Association for the Recovery of Historical Memory (Asociación para la Recuperación de la Memoria Histórica or ARMH in Spanish) is a Spanish organization that collects the oral and written testimonies about the victims of the regime of Francisco Franco and excavates and identifies their bodies that were often dumped in mass graves.[1]

Emilio Silva and Santiago Macias founded the ARMH in December 2000. It is a group of about 50 Spanish archaeologists, anthropologists and forensics scientists. The group tries to identify the places of execution through records and interviewing the locals. Sometimes they also receive anonymous information about them.

Volunteer group members gather in a decided place to excavate the mass grave found. They try to exhume the bodies and identify the remains of the victims with DNA tests and other forensic methods. As of September 2006, ARMH had conducted 40 excavations and found remains of 520 victims.[2]As of October 2009 had identified remains of 1.700 victims.[3]

One of these mass graves outside of Burgos was the subject of a photo-documentary entitled Dark is the Room Where We Sleep at the International Center Of Photography in New York, New York.[4]


  1. ^ Preston, Paul. The Spanish Civil War. Reaction, Revolution & revenge. Harper Perennial. London. 2006. p.316
  2. ^ Elkin, Mike - "Opening Franco's Graves" (Archaeology, September/October 2006)
  3. ^ Associated Press
  4. ^ Francesc Torres - International Center Of Photography

External links

Official site (Spanish)

Article about ARMH


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