|The Devil's Caldron||Chronology|
Chronology of the Island
1502 - During an exploratory expedition, the navigator André Gonçalves discovers Ilha Grande together with the bay of Angra dos Reis.
1531 - The colonizer and administrator of colonial Brazil, Martim Afonso de Souza, witnesses a war between the Guianazes and Tamoios Indians. The tribes were disputing control of the fishing areas around the Island. Some historians acknowledge this date for the foundation of Confederation of Tamoios.
1559 - The first colonial center emerges. A farm is established by Vicente da Fonseca.
1629 - The pirate Juan Lorenzo, protected by King Felipe II of Spain, builds his refuge house close to a beach which he baptizes as Bat Beach. The house is considered the third masonry construction in the country.
1871 - The first leprosarium of the country is built, named Lazareto. The island is an obligatory stop for African slave ships to put ashore sick slaves before reaching the continent. White settlers, who were ill with contagious diseases, were also sent to this place.
1888 - During Lei Aurea, which brought abolition to Brazil, the island was used as a hideaway for contraband slaves. Even today, deep in the jungle, exist ruins of senzalas - slaves quarters.
1891-94 - During the rule of Marechal Floriano Peixoto, the government decided to transfer the penitentiary from Fernando de Noronha Island to the deactivated Lazareto. Officials and soldiers, who had participated in the Revolta da Marinha, were sent to Ilha Grande as political prisoners.
1893 - An aqueduct built to function for Lazareto was inaugurated. The construction, ordered by Don Pedro II, marks the beginning of development on Ilha Grande.
1930 - The country lives under the dictatorship of Getúlio Vargas and the island returns to use as a penitentiary for political prisoners. At this time, the inmates are sent to the opposite side of the island to a agricultural colony at the bay of Dois Rios named Penal Colony Cândido Mendes.
1936 - Ilha Grande receives one of its most famous political prisoners, the writer Graciliano Ramos, who later immortalized the area in his book Memórias do Cárcere, Memories of Incarceration.
1938 - The house of the pirate Juan Lorenzo is bought and restored by the filmmaker Mario Peixoto, who records there scenes of the movie Limite. In his mansion, Peixoto gathers a valuable collection of art works from the colonial period, and receives many illustrious guests, including the French actress Brigette Bardot. Decades later, the businessman and ex-mayor of Rio de Janeiro, Israel Klabin, purchases the mansion.
1941 - At the bay of Dois Rios, a three story prison is erected, with the capacity to hold six hundred inmates. The name is changed from Penal Colony to Penal Institution of Cândido Mendes.
1964 - The first prison, known as Lazareto, is dynamited. Until today, ruins of this building remain.
Post '64 - With a military regime installed in Brazil, Ilha Grande starts again to hold political prisoners. Detained with several militants from left wing organizations are many well-known people, including the journalist Fernando Gabeira, all of whom are incarcerated together with the common prisoners.
1970 - The Comando Vermelho, Brazil's largest criminal organization, is formed in Cândido Mendes.
1971 - The State Park of Ilha Grande, with 14,055 acres, is created under the administration of the State Institute of Forests (IEF).
1976 - João Francisco dos Santos, the transvestite known as Madame Satã, considered the most infamous felon from Lapa, dies at the age of 76. After spending several years imprisoned at Ilha Grande, this legendary personality continued to live on the island where he is now buried.
1981- The biological reserve of the Praia do Sul, with 8,892 acres, is created under the responsibility of the State Foundation for Environmental Management (Feema).
1985 - Cândido Mendes is the setting for one of the most spectacular escapes in police chronicles. On the last day of the year, drug trafficker José Carlos dos Reis Encina - o Escadinha, The Little Stairs - escapes from the penitentiary by helicopter.
1988 - The principal leaders of the Comando Vermelho are transferred to the prison of Bangu I.
1992 - On the 29th of May, Rogério Lemgruber - O Bagulhão - one of the most idolized members of the Comando Vermelho, dies of complications from diabetes.
1994 - On March 25th and 26th, prisoners are transferred from Cândido Mendes to the penitentiary of Vincente Piragibe in Rio de Janeiro city.
1994 - On April 2nd, upon orders from the Governor of Rio de Janeiro, Leonel Brizola, and from the Secretary of Justice, Nilo Batista, the main building of the Penal Institution of Cândido Mendes is demolished.
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