This article tells an untold story about Víctor Raúl Haya de la Torre, the legendary leader of the Peruvian Aprista Party. It contextualizes and deepens the existing analysis of how he came of age politically and engaged with the formation of the American Popular Revolutionary Alliance (APRA) following his deportation from Peru in October 1923. This study shows that personal experiences of self-transformation in exile were necessary for young APRA pioneers to break away from their pasts before they could create novel political philosophies that aimed to transform Peru and the Americas. Foreign allies also played a crucial role in sustaining transnational solidarity networks that assisted the development of APRA as a persecuted political group. Specifically, this article focuses on historicizing and drawing out the larger significance of the unstable relationships that bound Anna Melissa Graves and John A. Mackay to the young Haya de la Torre in the 1920s.