by Saskia Mier
Hinojos is situated within the Comarca of El Condado. Legend has it that it was here that King Alfonso X fell to his death on his knees before the patron saint, Virgen del Valle. It has about 3,900 inhabitants.
The Romans came to Andalusia after the battle of Ilipla and found a land still to be developed. However, in the low part of the Guadalquivir, there are a number of settlements created for trade with Fenicia, linking the origin of Hinojos to the period of Tartessos.
It is thought that in Roman times, Omnium (Hinojos) was a place of frequent passage or a resting place, due to its geographical position between Gades (Cadiz), Hispalis (Sevilla) and Onuba (Huelva). There are today Roman archaeological sites that have been found showing settlements near the village, especially in Alameda de Alquería and Aljarafe.
Moorish remains have also been found, possibly on a settlement previously established by Romans. Historians suggest that the village was then called Ocsaginova. Remains were found on the road between Pilas (Seville) and Hinojos, of what was an Almohade farm dating from the twelfth and thirteenth centuries.
Hinojos formerly belonged to the Condado de Niebla and later to Seville during the reign of Fernando III. During the reign of Isabel II, Hinojos becomes part of the newly created province of Huelva. Throughout the twentieth century and in times of dictatorship, the work of mayors and their corporations has been vital for the development of Hinojos.
THINGS TO SEE
Iglesia Parroquial de Santiago el Mayor
The church is not only unique for its beauty but also the rich artistic heritage it has. An example of Sevillian Mudejar Gothic architecture of the fifteenth century, with sculptures by Juan Bautista Vázquez "El Viejo" and Jerónimo Hernández from the sixteenth century as well as by Martínez Montañés and Pedro Roldán from the seventeenth century. An image of Santo Tomás painted by Alejo Fernández dates to the sixteenth century. Located in Plaza de España.
Ermita de la Soledad
La Ermita de Nuestra Señora de la Soledad, was an old mendicant hospital of the Order of Santiago. The Cofradía de la Soledad (Brotherhood) maintained the Hospital de Santiago in1685. It was built in the seventeenth century, and within its interior, an altarpiece designed by local sculptor Don Antonio León Ortega in 1966. La Ermita also holds several works of art, and its latest restoration took place in 2004. Located on Calle Santiago.
Ermita de Nuestra Señora del Valle
In 1582, the fifteenth century Moorish style chapel was called Ermita de San Sebastián y Nuestra Señora Del Valle. The sculpture of Nuestra Señora Del Valle dates to the fifteenth century and restored in the twentieth century, by sculptor Sebastián Santos y Juan Manuel Miñarro. Located on Calle Virgen del Valle.
The town hall is a contemporary building surrounded by the headquarters of the Guardia Civil, Iglesia Parroquial Santiago Apóstol and stately homes. It opened on 11 February 1983 by the Minister of Territorial Policy and Infrastructure, Jaime Montaner Rosello and Mayor of the town Don Diego Guzmán Cano.
Museo Harinera Santa Rosa
In the late nineteenth century, Hinojos had 4 bread ovens. Harinera Santa Rosa, located in the mill owned by Paca Méndez, was founded in 1940 by Don Francisco Talavera Jerez, and was active until 1960. It is the only mill in western Andalusia that has remained intact and in perfect condition and was restored in 2006. The Municipal Ethnographic Museum is composed of more than 350 pieces, coming almost entirely from donations made by locals. Located on Calle El Molino.
Opening Times: Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday, 10:30hrs-11:30hrs.
Price: Free Entrance
Tel: 959 45 94 53
Casa Grande dates back to the nineteenth century and was built in the traditional style of that era. The inner courtyard is formed via arches giving it a distinct and unique design, last renovated in 2013. At present, it is used for the development of cultural activities. Located on Calle Aguirre.
Hacienda San José
Hacienda San José was owned by Jiménez Placer, since 1907, although it has always been known as the Hacienda de Ahumada. The Hacienda was acquired in the early twentieth century by Señor Ahumada as a gift to his wife Doña Josefa Jiménez Placer. Hacienda San José initially consisted of an oil mill, groundskeeper cottage and the main house. The years passed, the oil mill ceased to function and was shut down and the Hacienda gradually entered a poor state. In 1982, Antonio Leal and Carmen Echevarria acquired the estate when they married, restoring the Hacienda. Located on Calle La Fuente.
Hacienda de Torrecuadro
Hacienda de Torrecuadro dates back to the nineteenth century (1870/1889), dedicated to olive production, and now divided between several families. An old mill with preserved exterior and interior is part of the Hacienda, and even machinery dating from 1931. The rest of the building is composed old cellars and outbuildings for the family. Located on Carretera Hinojos-Chucena.
Fuente El Cerillo
El Cerrillo was a meeting place for women who besides collecting water for their homes took the opportunity to chat to neighbours. The water she source was a social place where women felt safe amongst themselves, considering men rarely set foot at El Cerillo. Today it is a private corner decorated with plants and flowers.
Hinojos-Almonte-Bollullos par del Condado
This route is 49.6km in length and has duration of 2½ hours. This is an area great for bird watching, especially birds of prey such as buzzards, the booted eagle and the lesser kestrel. The landscape is also rich with pine and eucalyptus, mixed with Mediterranean crops, dominated by the olive grove and arable dry land.
Hinojos has specifically become well known for grilled meats, usually pork. Stews, are also very popular, from the most basic, such as sopa de marisma or guiso de "casi olla", to the most extravagant made with venison, rabbit or partridge. Other local dishes include migas, cocidos, calderas, las poleás, espárragos, el "viri" (type of tomato soup)and "hongos", which are a variety of wild cep. Sweet treats include "rositas con miel", pestiños, tortas de hornazos, repápilas and torrijas, all pastries either dipped in sugar or honey.
The most popular handicraft in Hinojos is coal making. A technique of burying wood to form mini mountains with holes allowing smoke to escape. The wood eventually turns into coal. Other local crafts include basket making and embroidered shawls.
Procesión de la Candelaria
The procession is celebrated in April, the Virgin is carried around the main square carrying a candle in the right hand.
One of the biggest and main events of the year in Hinojos.
Día de la Santa Cruz
Celebrated on 3 May by decorating crosses with flowers and adornments.
Celebrated in May, before the pilgrimage of El Rocio. It is an event dedicated purely to children.
The most famous pilgrimage that takes place in the Aldea El Rocio on the border of Doñana National Park. The local Brotherhood travels to the Ermita accompanied by pilgrims on foot, on horse or by carriage.
Celebrated at the end of June, three of the brotherhoods in Hinojos come together for the pilgrimage that dates back to the sixteenth century.
Fiesta de Santa María Magdalena
Celebrated the weekend before the 22 July with processions taking Santa María Magdalena through the streets of Hinojos.
Procesión de Santiago el Mayor
Celebrated at the end of July, usually around the 25, in honour of the patron saint of Hinojos. Processions take place through the streets as well as other events that are organised.
Recogida de las Yeguas
In August, the annual tradition of rounding up the wild mares in the marshes of Hinojos takes place and is very popular. Cultural events are then organised for the rest of the weekend.
Feria de Nuestra Señora del Valle
Celebrated the second week of September, based on over 500 years of tradition. A local agricultural fair was how this event started and as evolved into an important event for the community.