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About this photograph

Margery H. Freeman
Date created
Cajabamba, Ecuador
This photograph copyright ©2006. Terms of use

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Carrying a cow's head to market

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A man carries a severed cow’s head over his shoulder. The man is wearing the traditional garb of the Andean highlands: felt fedora hat and wool poncho.

Cajabamba is a market city. Most likely, this man is either taking the cow’s head to be sold at the market, or he has recently purchased the head. Even though Ecuador is now exploiting is large oil reserves, the country remains an agricultural and pastoral nation. Cajabamba is a historically-important town near Riobamba that is centrally located in Ecuador between the plantations of the coast and the natural abundance of the rainforest. Therefore, market day in Cajabamba is an important day for the surrounding region.