Ladainha: Torpedeira Piauí

\"piauhy\"Torpedeira Piauí
Coraçado na Bahia
Marinheiro absoluto
Chegou pintando arrelia
Quando vê cobra assanhada
Não mete o pé na rodia
A cobra assanhada morde
Se eu fosse cobra eu mordia
Mataram Pedro Mineiro
Dentro da Secretaria

The warship Piauí
Christened in Bahia
The independent sailor
Arrived causing trouble
When you see an agitated snake
Don\’t step on it
An agitated snake bites
If I were a snake, I\’d bite
They killed Pedro Mineiro
In the police station

On December 26, 1914, a shootout erupted between three capoeiristas (Pedro Mineiro, Sebastião de Souza, and Antônio José Freire, also known as \”Branco\”) and a group of sailors from the warship Piauí, which was in port in Bahia. Some say it a fight over a prostitute; others claim that the capoeiristas were acting as secret agents of the police, who had clashed with the sailors before. Several of the sailors were injured in the conflict and two were killed – and all three capoeiristas were captured and arrested.

At the trial two days later, Pedro Mineiro was the first to testify. He claimed to be working for the police, and said he was acting in self-defense after having been attacked by the sailors. Sebastião and Branco also claimed to be victims. Suddenly, one of the sailors stood up and shot Pedro Mineiro right there in the courtroom. In the chaos that followed, the sailors escaped and Sebastião and Branco ran away as well. Sebastião was pursued by a sailor and stabbed. He was taken to the hospital along with Pedro Mineiro. The incident was extensively covered by the media, especially the vicious letters between Police Chief Álvaro Cova and Captain Carlos Alves de Souza of the Piauí.

Pedro Mineiro never recovered from his injuries, and died in the hospital on January 15, 1915 at 27 years of age.

For further reading: Mandinga, Manha, & Malícia by Adriana Albert Dias

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