André Rebouças (1838-1898) was a renowned Brazilian engineer, writer, and abolitionist and one of the founders of the Brazilian Anti-Slavery Society. Born a free man in Bahia, he was educated in Brazil’s military academy and served in the army during the Paraguayan War (also known as the War of the Triple Alliance). He eventually became well-known in Rio de Janeiro, then the country’s capital, for solving a problem regarding the city’s water supply.
Rebouças was active in the abolitionist cause, founding the Brazilian Anti-Slavery Society alongside Joaquim Nabuco (who went on to become Brazil’s ambassador to the US) and José do Patrocínio (a renowned abolitionist who was also of African descent). He followed the deposed Emperor Pedro II into exile in Europe following the 1889 coup d’état which abolished the Brazilian monarchy, and settled in the Portuguese capital city of Lisbon. There he worked as a journalist for local and international newspapers, including the Times of London. He then spent some time living in the city of Luanda in West Africa (present-day Angola), before ending his days in Funchal, Madeira, where he is said to have committed suicide at age 60 in 1898.