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Cangaceiros, volantes and coiteiros

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  • Luiz de Thereza (b. - 1938)
    É o Cangaceiro cuja cabeça por anos levou o nome de desconhecido. Ele entrou para o Bando de José Sereno no ultimo dia de São João, então entrou para o cangaço, e ficou apenas um mês, e cotaram-lhe a c...
  • Dussantos (deceased)
  • Serrote (deceased)
  • Pedro Vieira da Silva (deceased)
    O Soldado Pedro Barbosa dos Santos atuou nas volante do Tenente José Vitor e do Tenente Alvinho. Seu pai era um grande fazendeiro. Depois de entrar para o cangaço na marra, ir preso por 3 anos, pediu p...

Cangaceiros were letter-dressed outlaws who had great impact in Northeastern Brazilian hinterlands in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Under harsh and arid conditions (letter clothes protected them from the cacti spines), they fought police and some great landowners, and had support from other farmers and from some poor citizens.

As a matter of fact, cangaceiros entered social memory both as violent bandits (who robbed, killed and raped) and as a kind of "Robin Hood" challengers of an unfairs social system.

Among the most famous cangaceiros were Lampião, Corisco, Maria Bonita, Dadá, Jesuíno Brilhante and Zé Sereno.

They had people who helped them in their activities and struggle, providing them food and shelter: they were called "coiteiros".

The state governments from Northeast created special police units to track and fight, by any means, cangaceiros: those troop members were known as "volantes".