Mrs. Isabel Foster


Isabel Foster Kagel (Rio de Janeiro, Empire of Brazil; 1835 - Rosario, Santa Fe, Argentina; April 20, 1932) was a landowner and the eldest daughter of the Portuguese colonizer Ricardo Foster.


Isabel Foster was the eldest daughter of Ricardo Foster (1808-1865), a Portuguese politician and colonizer, and Ana Amalia Kagel (1819-c.1890), a native of Porto and the daughter of a native German from Hamburg residing in Rio de Janeiro, translator and intermediary for the German community and the Emperor of Brazil.

His parents married around 1830 in Portugal and together they had 3 children: Isabel Foster (1835-1932), Ana Adelina Foster (1840-?) and Enrique Foster (1842-1916).

One of his brothers, Enrique Foster, was a colonizer and surveyor, and had a son with Isabel Llames (1845-c.1900) around 1865 but then he married Adelaida Ponsati Vidal (1850-1916) in 1873. His sister Ana, died single.

Isabel Foster married Máximo Fernando de Elía Álzaga (1811-1865) on January 7, 1863 in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and together they had 2 children: Máximo Ricardo de Elía Foster (1863-1863) and Nicanor Zenon Carlos de Elía Foster (1864-1941).

It should be noted that her husband, Máximo, was the son of María Isabel Eugenia de Álzaga Cabrera (1786-1858), one of the most powerful landowners on the coast of the Eastern Republic of Uruguay. In turn, grandson of Mateo Ramón de Álzaga Sobrado (1734-1786), a wealthy Spanish merchant who married Toribia María Francisca Cabrera Saavedra (1755-1798), married in a second marriage to General Cornelio Saavedra (1759-1829) , president of the first government of the United Provinces of Río de la Plata.

Máximo's father was Ángel Mariano Roque de Elía García de Zúñiga (1771-?), a prominent jurist who was a member of the Assembly of the Year XIII. Great-nephew of the military man and Governor of Entre Ríos, Mateo García de Zúñiga (1795-1872).


Isabel Foster was born in 1835 in Rio de Janeiro when her parents emigrated from the island of Madeira, located in the North Atlantic, to the Empire of Brazil, where she was born with her two brothers.

In 1843, due to the yellow fever epidemic, they traveled to Montevideo where they stayed for a time, finally reaching the province of Santa Fe in Argentina. There they achieved good friendships and a dizzying social and economic rise, joining the Club del Orden along with other prestigious personalities such as Juan Francisco Seguí (1822-1863), at that time vice president of the Chamber of Deputies of the Argentine Confederation, among many others. 

In 1857, her father became associated with Máximo Fernando de Elía Álzaga, who would later become her husband.


Isabel Foster died on Wednesday, April 20, 1932 in the city of Rosario, Santa Fe province, and her remains rest in the same city.


  • Nobiliario del Antiguo Virreynato del Rio de la Plata, Carlos Calvo, (M. Rocca, Buenos Aires, 1924 y Editorial La Facultad, Buenos Aires, 1936 a 1943).
  • Family Search, Family Search, (,, November 18, 2020.