BECK index

New Granada & Bolívar to 1830

by Sanderson Beck

New Granada 1525-1744
New Granada 1744-1814
Bolivar in Venezuela 1808-11
Bolivar in Venezuela 1812-13
Bolivar & Revolution 1814-17
Bolívar & Venezuela 1817-23
Peru’s Revolution 1819-22
Bolívar in Peru & Bolivia 1823-25
Bolívar & Colombia 1817-25
Chilean Revolution 1817-30
Bolívar & Northern Conflicts 1826-30

This chapter has been published in the book Latin America & Canada to 1850. For ordering information please click here.

New Granada 1525-1744

      The northwestern portion of South America had many Chibchas. In what became Colombia the Taironas lived on the lower slopes of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta by the Caribbean shore, and Muiscas were more numerous inland in the mountainous area that became Bogotá. One chief there was installed with a ceremony that coated him with gold dust that was then washed off; this ritual may have stimulated the legend of the “gilded man” or El Dorado that motivated so much exploration by conquistadors. San Sebastian was founded near Panama in 1510 but did not last.
      Santa Marta Bay had been named in 1501, and in 1525 Rodrigo de Bastidas founded a city of the same name. He made peace with the neighboring Gairas, Tagangas, and Dorsinos, and he obtained gold from the Bondas and Bondingas. He put his troops to work building houses and prohibited trading with the natives for gold. Lt. General Pedro Villafuerte led a conspiracy to kill Bastidas, who was wounded but defended as the assassins fled. He replaced Villafuerte with Alvarez Palomino, who succeeded him in 1526. Villafuerte and Pedro de Porras were captured and executed. Palomino maintained peace with local tribes but raided the Zacas and Chairamas farther away. The audiencia (law court) at Santo Domingo appointed Pedro Badillo as temporary governor with Pedro de Heredia as his assistant. Badillo let the Spaniards devastate the natives. Carlos V appointed Garcia de Lerma, who arrived at Santa Marta in 1529 with four hundred men, including twenty Dominican missionaries led by Fray Tomas Ortiz. The tribes were peaceful, and he distributed them to encomenderos, who abused them. Pedro de Heredia defeated the Turbacos and founded Cartagena in 1533, taking booty worth 1.5 million gold ducats from the interior. In 1536 Juan Badillo was sent to arrest the Heredia brothers, and he ordered Indians to be captured and sold as slaves in Santo Domingo.
      The lawyer Gonzalo Jiménez de Quesada led an army of 900 to conquer the Muiscas in 1536. He imposed strict discipline by hanging a soldier for having taken two blankets left on the trail by a native. He defeated the zipa Tisquesua and then the zaque in Tunja, where he seized a treasure of gold. The next zipa made an alliance with the Spaniards to fight the Panches of the Magdalena Valley. After collecting much gold from the Muiscas, in 1538 Jiménez de Quesada and his men attacked the Chibcha capital at Bacata, enslaved the Chibchas, stole their gold, and burned their temples, founding Santa Fe de Bacata, which later became known as Bogotá. A few weeks later Sebastian de Belalcazar, who was from Peru and Quito and had founded Popayan in 1536, arrived and was appointed governor. The German Nikolaus Federmann also led an expedition that arrived in Bogotá from Venezuela about this time. Jiménez, Belalcazar, and Federmann held a summit meeting and agreed to let the government of Spain decide. Carlos V rejected Federmann as an interloper, appointed Belalcazar governor of Popayan, and after remitting his punishment, he made Jiménez marshal over New Granada (Colombia and Venezuela). Belalcazar sent troops south, and Pedro de Añasco burned a chief to death, provoking a massacre of the Spaniards by ten thousand warriors; but ninety Spaniards managed to hold out in a fort at Timana.
      Alonso Luis de Lugo replaced Jiménez de Quesada as governor of New Granada in 1542. In Velez he cancelled the distribution of the natives and collected tribute from the chiefs for himself. In 1544 Lugo banished the Quesadas from the Indies and left for Spain. Meanwhile the corsair Robert Val had plundered and burned Santa Marta in 1542, and the next year his pirates looted Cartagena, which prevented fire by paying Val a ransom of 2,000 pesos. Settlers resisted the New Laws of 1542 by continuing to enslave the natives. Visitador Miguel Diaz de Armendariz arrived at Cartagena in 1544 and ordered Belalcazar to enforce the New Laws in Popayan, but evasions continued. In 1546 Jorge Robledo led a force of seventy men from Cartagena to Antioquia and arrested Belalcazar’s officer; but Belalcazar surprised his camp at Loma de Pozo, forced Robledo to surrender, and executed him with three of his officers. After trying Heredia in Cartagena, Armendariz went to Bogotá in 1547. Several delegates went to Spain, and the next year the New Laws were changed. In 1550 the cabildo (council) of Bogotá recognized the newly installed audiencia. Belalcazar was arrested for the four murders, provided a bond, but died on his way to Spain in 1551. That year Jiménez returned to Bogotá and endeavored to protect the natives he had conquered.
      In 1553 the visitador Juan Montaño arrested the judges Juan Lopez de Galarza and Beltran de Gongora and sent them to Spain. Complaints against Montaño led to the lawyer Alonso de Grajeda being sent to arrest him. Montaño was sent to Spain in the same chains he had used on his victims, and the Council of the Indies executed him in 1561. That year Jiménez de Quesada repelled an attack from Venezuela and was appointed governor of New Granada, but he wasted three years, many men, and much money trying to find El Dorado. In 1564 the crown replaced the members of the audiencia, and Andres Diaz Venero de Leiva was appointed the first president of New Granada. He governed well for ten years and tried to alleviate the wretched conditions of the natives by giving them their own land, urging encomenderos to fulfill their duties, penalizing those who used Indians as carriers, and opening schools for Indians. Agustin de la Coruña became bishop of Popayan in 1566. He championed the oppressed natives and Africans so much by distributing Church funds to the poor and defending them against abuses that he was imprisoned and sent to Quito. After five years in exile he was allowed to return and continue his saintly work until he died in 1589. A small pox epidemic devastated the native population in 1566 and struck again 1588-90, killing thousands.
      Jiménez de Quesada was sent to conquer the Guali Indians during the interim four years (1574-78) of administration by the audiencia, and he founded the city of Santa Agueda. Jiménez died of leprosy in 1579, leaving a debt of 60,000 ducats. The second president, Lope Diez Aux de Armendariz, arrived in 1578, but two years later he was imprisoned by visitador Juan Bautista Monzon. He too was imprisoned but was released in 1582 by visitador Prieto de Orellana, who in turn was dismissed, went to Madrid, and died in jail.

      Carlos V granted most of Venezuela to a consortium of German bankers led by the Welser group of Augsburg, and in 1529 Ambrosio Alfinger arrived in Coro, which had been recently established as a slave-raiding post by Juan de Ampies. They sought the fabulous El Dorado, but Alfinger treated the natives cruelly and died from wounds he received from them. In 1534 a Bavarian who called himself Jorge de Espira was appointed governor. He and Nikolaus Federmann went searching for gold separately. Crown agents investigated Jorge de Espira, who died in 1540. The next year Philip Hutten became governor at Coro; but in 1546 he was assassinated by Juan de Carvajal, who led settlers into the Segovia Highlands, founding El Tocuyo in the valley to provide cattle and crops for the miners in the region. Borburata became a port for conveying African slaves. In 1555 Valencia became the frontier outpost on Lake Tacarigua. Settlers in the valley of Caracas were repeatedly attacked by Indians until Diego Losada arrived in 1567 with 150 residents and 800 Indian servants and soldiers. Maracaibo suffered from hostile natives for a dozen years until it became permanent in 1574. The Franciscans established a convent in the province of Santa Cruz de Caracas. In 1580 a smallpox plague wiped out about two thirds of the 30,000 natives in the Caracas valley.
      In New Granada the encomienda system of exploiting native labor caused overwork, mistreatment, and rebellion, which along with European diseases wiped out about 95 percent of the native population in a century. The Spaniards had many children with native women so that the mestizos came to outnumber both the Spaniards and the Indians. Cartagena became the principal South American port and naval base in the Spanish Main. The government paid for this by its monopoly on tobacco and liquor prices. In 1586 Francis Drake with nineteen ships attacked Cartagena and stole slaves, precious metals and gems worth 400,000 pesos, artillery, and church bells. He demanded a large ransom and set houses on fire, but then he accepted another 100,000 pesos and had the conflagration stopped. Antonio Gonzalez became president in 1590. He issued decrees to protect the Indians and initiated the alcabala (sales tax), which was resented until a Dominican friar explained its legality. Drake returned in 1596 and destroyed Santa Marta. In 1605 Juan de Borja became president and captain-general of the New Kingdom of Granada, and with the help of Indian allies he defeated the hostile Pijaos after four years of war. In 1619 Borja authorized the use of natives in the mines, and most of the thousand a year used did not survive the heavy labor. After the native population was depleted, the miners imported African slaves.
      The Spanish Inquisition came to Cartagena in 1610. In the entire colonial period they burned five or six people, compared to more than a hundred in Mexico City and Lima. Yet the Inquisition at Cartagena did sentence 762 people to lesser penalties. The Jesuit Pedro Claver worked for more than forty years with the Africans, especially those suffering from elephantiasis, until he died at Cartagena in 1654. Claver estimated that he baptized about 300,000 slaves. In 1656 Franciscans from Spain founded missions in eastern Venezuela at Piritu. Spaniards spent eight years subjugating the Chinato and Lobatera tribes and founded San Faustino de los Rios in 1662. Caracas was protected from the coast by mountains, but in 1680 some buccaneers crossed these mountains and sacked the city. That year an English force was guided by natives to the mining town of Santa Marta and massacred the garrison.
      Diego Cordoba Lasso de la Vega governed New Granada 1703-13 but moved to Cartagena in 1710 to prepare for a foreign invasion. New Granada became a viceroyalty independent of Peru in 1717. However, Viceroy Jorge Villalonga (1718-23) recommended that the presidency would be a more efficient form of government, and the viceroyalty was not re-established until 1739, one year after Bogotá got the first printing press in the colony. In the province of Quito the best land was taken by the Jesuits, who were also exempt from the tithes. Ecuador became part of the viceroyalty of New Granada in 1717, and its audiencia was maintained. Dionisio de Alcedo became president in 1728; but restrictions on the exports of cacao caused such poverty that in 1734 salaries for him and the judges of the audiencia could not be paid. Thieves robbed private houses and even churches, and a canon of the Church was assassinated. After the Franciscans reached the Orinoco, in 1734 they made an agreement with the Jesuit and Capuchin missions that gave the Piritu mission much of Guayana south of the Angostura and east of the Orinoco.
      War with England broke out in 1739, and Viceroy Sebastian de Eslaba arrived at Cartagena in 1740. Edward Vernon led an English fleet of 51 warships and 28,000 men, attacking Bocachica in March 1741; but after losing nearly 18,000 men to warfare, dysentery, and scurvy, Vernon withdrew in May.
      The province of Venezuela was usually represented by the cabildo at Caracas. In 1725 a seminary was upgraded to become the University of Caracas. Venezuela was important for its exports of cacao and wheat, and the Caracas Company was formed in 1728 and given a monopoly on commerce in exchange for patrolling the coast. Later the Company’s monopoly expanded to take in the Maracaibo region. The Company’s agents often abridged the rights of locals.

New Granada 1744-1814

      The Spanish Viceroyalty of New Granada from 1717 to 1819 included what became Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador and Panama. Viceroy Sebastian de Eslaba came to Cartagena in 1740 and stayed until he retired in 1749. That year Archbishop Azua forbade clergy from selling alcohol. Dissatisfied creoles (criollos) began protesting against the Caracas Company in 1748, and Juan Francisco de Leon led rebellions against it from 1749 to 1751. The naval officer Jose Alfonso Pizarro was viceroy 1749-53 and established a monopoly on the sale of alcohol. Viceroy Jose Solis (1753-61) implemented internal improvements and had the mint at Bogotá rebuilt. He established missions and ordered the colony’s first census. He improved the postal service, tax collection, and the Audiencia (law court). He revived the chair of medicine at the Colegio del Rosario and founded the Hospital San Juan de Dios during a measles epidemic.
      Viceroy Pedro de Messia de la Cerda (1761-73) made tobacco a government monopoly. An earthquake in 1765 destroyed the mines of Concepcion that had an annual production of about 300,000 pesos. Quito had been part of New Granada since 1740. In 1765 the people rebelled against the liquor monopoly and high customs duties, and they governed Quito for more than a year. After royal troops occupied the city, Viceroy Messia de la Cerda granted amnesty to all those involved in the insurrection. In addition to Cadiz in 1765 Spain allowed Spaniards to trade to seven ports in the Caribbean—Barcelona, Malaga, Alicante, Cartagena, Corunna, Gijon, and Santander.
      In 1767 more than 187 Jesuits were banished, and their fourteen colleges with about 5,000 students were abandoned. In 1769 the Spaniards captured 22 Guajiros to work on fortifications at Cartagena. On May 2 at El Rincon the natives burned the church with two Spaniards who had taken refuge there, and they captured the priest. The rebellion spread to 20,000 armed Indians who burned most of the settlements in the area, killing more than a hundred Spaniards and capturing even more. Cartagena sent a hundred soldiers, and reinforcements helped them dis-perse the rebels, though the Guajiros regained territory. Viceroy Manuel Guiror (1773-76) promoted missions, but an uprising of Indians in the province of Riohacha using fire-arms was suppressed. Guiror did not add any new taxes, but he was diligent in collecting them. He divided Bogotá into barrios.
      Manuel Antonio Florez was viceroy at Cartagena 1776-81. He introduced a public printing press, and on January 9, 1777 he opened the royal library to the public. When Spain declared war on England in 1779, Carlos III gave Juan Francisco Gutierrez de Piñeres as visitador-regente (presiding judge) the authority to raise more money. He doubled the price of tobacco and rum, and he imposed a tax of two pesos on each white man and one peso on each man of color. On September 27, 1780 the Intendant Jose de Abalos wrote a letter to Jose de Galves, the Universal Secretary of the Indies, complaining about the bad effects of the Guipuzcoa Company’s monopoly in Venezuela. The high taxes and corruption of those collecting them that took half the revenues caused resentment and rebellion in October. Many Indians heard about the revolt of Tupac Amaru in Peru and joined.
      About 6,000 people in Socorro and San Gil refused to pay their taxes. On 16 March 1781 Jose Delgadillo led a group of protestors to the house of the alcalde Jose de Angulo in Socorro, saying they would not pay the imposts and shouting, “Long live the King and death to the bad government!” The Socorro Cabildo (Assembly) that day suspended the new taxes, and at San Gil a mob burned the tobacco in the storehouse. At Simacota tobacco was burned, and brandy was poured out. The regent Gutierrez de Piñeres recalled some of the taxes in this area. Ciriaco de Archila sent verses from Bogotá that were read aloud to a crowd of 4,000. Then the mob broke into the offices and destroyed taxable items such as liquor, playing cards, stamped paper, and tobacco. Yet reports indicated little or no looting for personal gain nor was anyone killed.
      In April 1781 six thousand rebels assembled in Socorro and elected a comun with four leaders. The chief Juan Francisco Berbeo organized a force of 4,000 men, and the outnumbered local soldiers surrendered. Other towns did likewise, and about 20,000 comuneros marched toward Bogotá. The leaders Juan Francisco Berbeo, Antonio Jose Monsalve, Francisco Rosillo, and Clemente Jose Estevez wrote to Viceroy Florez that they wanted to secure prudently the “tranquility of these republics” without loss of life or property. Oidor (Judge) Osorio marched out of Bogotá with fifty men, but they were overwhelmed and captured. The insurgents declared their independence and aimed to govern themselves democratically as a republic.
      Gutierrez de Piñeres convened the Audiencia at Bogotá, appointed commissioners to negotiate, appealed to Archbishop Antonio Caballero, decreed a reduction in the sales and war taxes, and organized the militia. However, the insurgents next attacked the house of an administrator at Zipaquira. Berbeo sent Juan Bautista Morales to England to ask for military aid. The town of Giron opposed the revolution and gathered a company of 200 lances; but they fled when 4,000 rebels arrived. Ambrosio Pisco was a descendant of the zipas, and in May 1781 he put himself under Berbeo’s command. Indians at Silos published the proclamation of Tupac Amaru II and swore obedience to him as Emperor of America. The insurgents presented their demands for the abolition of monopolies and most taxes. Archbishop Caballero, the commissioners, and the Audiencia approved the demands, and their oaths were solemnized with Church rituals; but the commissioners secretly declared that they would not be bound by the agreement. The revolutionaries returned to their towns with the document they called the charter of their liberties. Berbeo went to Bogotá and was appointed corregidor (corrector) and chief justice of Socorro and San Gil.
      Spaniards often discriminated against those born in America whom they called creoles, but Archbishop Caballero also promised that creoles would be preferred over peninsulares (Spaniards) for office appointments. Viceroy Florez immediately rejected the agreement and sent additional troops. In August 1781 five hundred soldiers from Cartagena arrived at Bogotá. Most of the leaders gave in, but others resisted. The Indians would not fight trained troops and fled to the mountains. The educated mestizo Jose Antonio Galan and a few others were sentenced in January 1782 and hanged. Pisco was imprisoned in Cartagena for fourteen years. Regent Gutierrez de Piñeres returned to Bogotá and annulled the agreement. The comuneros had controlled about a third of New Granada, and some tax officials were killed. After this rebellion, the Spanish officials reduced the local militia and increased the imperial army. Spain also held back from New Granada the intendant system that gave more local authority.
      In 1782 Archbishop Caballero became viceroy and issued a general amnesty to those involved in the comuneros uprising. Before resigning in 1789 he promoted education, missions, mining techniques, and the botanical expedition led by Jose Celestino Mutis. Viceroy Jose de Ezpeleta (1789-97) continued the efforts in science, industry, and the arts. By the end of the colonial period the Catholic Church had 1,850 men and women in holy orders for the 1,400,000 inhabitants of New Granada. In 1800 New Granada had about 70,000 slaves and 140,000 free Africans. Slave rebellions were endemic from 1750 to 1790. A major revolt broke out in 1785 in Cartajo and spread to Cauca, Choco, and Valle. In 1799 slaves rebelled on the hacienda San Bartolomé near Mompox.
      Antonio Nariño was a prosperous merchant and intellectual with a library of 2,000 books. He admired Socrates, Plato, Montesquieu, Rousseau, Franklin, and Washington. When Pedro Fermin de Vargas, the corregidor of Zipaquira, went abroad in 1791-92 to raise money for revolution, he sold his books to Nariño who also owned a printing press. In 1793 he printed a few copies of his Spanish translation of the Declaration of the Rights of Man from the French revolution. After selling only one copy and giving away one other, he changed his mind and tried to get them back. Word got out, and they found subversive books in his library. Nariño’s property was confiscated, and he was sentenced to ten years imprisonment in North Africa and permanently banished from America. Even his defense attorney was sentenced to ten years. Nariño escaped at Cadiz and went to Madrid, Paris, and London, where he asked for help for the Spanish colonies from a member of the British cabinet. In 1795 his friend Francisco de Santa Cruz Espejo, an Indian doctor and lawyer in Quito, satirized the dismal economic conditions and was imprisoned for subversion. Eventually Nariño went back to New Granada and turned himself in to the new Viceroy in 1797. He spent six years in prison, but later he was arrested again. He was in a Cartagena prison when the independence movement reached fruition in 1810.

      In 1749 Juan Francisco de Leon led an effort to abolish the monopoly of the Caracas Company, and they marched to Caracas. The authorities made an agreement, but nothing really changed. When Leon gathered his forces again, Spain sent a new governor with 1,500 troops to crush the rebellion; Leon was captured and imprisoned in Spain for the rest of his life. Gradually some reforms were made, but the Caracas Company became less profitable.
      The Intendancy of New Granada put the six provinces of Venezuela under an administrator at Caracas in December 1776, and in September 1777 Venezuela became a captaincy-general with its capital at Caracas and included the autonomous provinces of Maracaibo, Coro, Guayana, Trinidad, Cumana, Puerto Cabello, Margarita, and Caracas. That year the bishopric of Merida began for Merida, Maracaibo, and Trujillo. In 1783 immigration was opened to anyone of the Catholic faith. Merida got a seminary in 1785 and began granting degrees in 1806. That year the Caracas Company stopped doing business, and the 1778 decree of Carlos III allowing free trade was finally implemented in Venezuela. The Real Audiencia of Caracas established judicial administration over Venezuela in July 1786. In 1789 the Caracas Company’s monopoly was abolished as free trade was announced. Guayana became a diocese in 1790. The Real Consulado of Caracas was established in June 1793 to promote and regulate commerce between the United Provinces of Venezuela and Spain and other Spanish colonies. The archdiocese of Caracas formed in 1803 and included the dioceses of Merida and Guayana. Venezuela became an archbishopric the next year. By then Caracas was a city of about 40,000.
      Francisco de Miranda was born in Caracas on 28 March 1750, and he attended the Royal University of Caracas. He developed revolutionary ideas and became an aide to General Juan Manuel de Cagigal in Cuba. Miranda was arrested in Havana by Captain-general Bernardo Galvez in 1783 and was sentenced to ten years, but Cagigal got him released. Miranda went north and met George Washington and criticized the Congress of the Confederation. In 1785 he went to England and then toured Europe, collecting books. According to his diary he had an extraordinary number of lovers, including Empress Catherine of Russia in 1787. In 1790 Miranda asked British Prime Minister William Pitt to support an effort for South American independence. He became a general in France’s revolutionary army under General Dumouriez in 1793 and won some important battles. During the reign of terror in 1794 Miranda was investigated, but he was acquitted and released in 1795. He returned to London and conspired with Bernardo O’Higgins, Andres Bello, and Antonio Nariño. In December 1797 Miranda claimed to be part of the junta from the provinces of Spanish America, and he asked Britain for ships and soldiers. In the United States he met with Rufus King; but Alexander Hamilton called Miranda “an intriguing adventurer,” and President Adams opposed him.
      Spain codified its slave laws on 31 May 1789, but planters in the Spanish Caribbean resisted the attempt to improve slave conditions, and Venezuela suspended the law in 1794. The next May 300 Africans revolted in Coro led by the zambo (African-Indian) Jose Leonardo Chirino and Jose Caridad Gonzalez. They took over haciendas, plundered property, and killed landowners before invading the city of Coro. They were crushed eventually, and many were shot without trial. In 1795 the Crown decreed that pardos (mixed races) could buy their equality with creoles, but creoles in the Caracas Cabildo blocked its enactment. The book Derechos del hombre y del ciudadano (Rights of Man and of the Citizen) was read in the Antilles and Venezuela, but the Audiencia of Caracas prohibited it in 1797.
      Jose Maria España and Manuel Gual led a revolutionary plot in the port city of La Guaira in 1797 that was discovered in July before they could raise arms from other countries. España and Gual fled. España returned to La Guaira and was hanged in spring 1799 when ninety revolutionaries were hanged or imprisoned. That year conspirators were also thwarted in Maracaibo.
      Miranda appealed to the United States Government again in 1805. President Jefferson gave no official support but allowed private persons to back him. Miranda managed to raise a “Columbian army” of 180 men, and they gained eight ships at Trinidad; but when they landed at La Vela de Coro with 400 soldiers on 3 August 1806, instead of a popular uprising, the inhabitants fled. Miranda lost British support and returned to Trinidad. He went back to London in 1808 and was treated as a popular hero. Edmund Burke published a pamphlet advocating South American emancipation. When Napoleon’s army took over Spain that year, his envoys in Caracas had to escape from a mob that still supported the Spanish crown.
      In June 1808 Viceroy Antonio Amar y Borbon learned of the changes in Spain and called troops from Cartagena to Bogotá. He summoned officials, ecclesiastics, and prominent citizens to meet on September 5; but the creoles tried to form a junta in Bogotá, and they resented his sending troops to quell the revolution in Quito.
      In September 1809 the lawyer Camilo Torres published his Memorial de agravios advocating equality between Spaniards and creoles. The Socorro Cabildo instructed their deputy of New Granada to the Central Junta to demand emancipation of Indians, distribution of communal lands (resguardos) to individual Indians, abolishing slavery, free manufacturing and trade, tax reform, and improving education and communication. Vargas wanted industrial diversification. Racial discrimination was rampant, and families took legal action to stop relatives from marrying mestizos. Mestizos went to court to be declared as such so that they would not have to pay the Indian tribute, to gain social mobility, and so they could pass for white.
      In Quito many critics had been arrested in 1808 and were charged with conspiracy. On 19 August 1809 creoles deposed President Count Ruiz de Castilla, overthrew the Audiencia, and formed a Junta headed by the Marquis of Selva Alegre with the Bishop of Quito as vice president. They controlled the local militia and raised more troops, abolished the tobacco monopoly, lowered taxes, and tried to confiscate ecclesiastical property. Selva Alegre wrote to Viceroy Abascal that this was a temporary expedient, and he sent royalist forces. The Junta negotiated some terms before surrendering to President Castilla on October 28. When soldiers arrived from Lima, Guayaquil, and Bogotá, Castilla renounced the agreement and imprisoned more than eighty rebels while the royalist troops went on a rampage in Quito. On 2 August 1810 patriots tried to rescue the prisoners, and more than sixty were killed.
      Spanish repression provoked another revolt in October with broader participation. Lima troops were forced to withdraw, and a general pardon was granted. The quiteños only recognized their own Junta, and many Spanish administrators were killed. On 15 February 1812 their revolutionary Congress promulgated the Free State of Quito even while factions struggled against each other. Royalist forces from Cuenca recruited many loyal Indians, and General Toribio Montes marched into Quito on November 8 and eliminated the rebel leaders. Then he reassured others with reconciliation.
      The llanos (herders) of Casanare rose up in May 1810, and in July cabildos revolted against corregidors in Cali, Pamplona, and Socorro. Those favoring independence in Bogotá led by Camilo Torres, Miguel de Pombo, and José de Acevedo y Gomez formed a supreme council on July 20 with the approval of Viceroy Amar. Three days later a crowd demanded the arrest of the Viceroy and his wife, and the Junta no longer recognized the Regency Council of Spain. Independent juntas were organized in the provinces of Cartagena, Santa Marta, Antioquia, El Choco, Socorro, Casanare, Neiva, Mariquita, Pamplona, and Tunja, but by the end of the year the royalists took over Santa Marta.
      A Supreme Congress representing the provinces was installed at Santa Fe de Bogotá on December 22. Their charter with its legislative, executive, and judicial branches was influenced by the constitutions of the United States and France and was signed on 30 March 1811. They recognized the Catholic religion as the only one in the state. They banned torture, and every citizen capable of bearing arms was considered a soldier.
      Jorge Tadeo Lozano was elected the first president of Cundinamarca in March. Antonio Nariño advocated a stronger central government, and he edited the opposition newspaper, La Bagatela. General Antonio Baraya was sent to suppress the congress in Tunja led by Camilo Torres and Frutos Gutierrez. President Lozano and his vice president resigned in September, and Nariño was elected president. In November 27 legislators from Cartagena, Antioquia, Casanare, Neiva, Pamplona, and Tunja signed the Act of Federation of the United Provinces of New Granada and sent it to other provinces for ratification.
      Cartagena had been the first province to declare complete independence from Spain on 11 1811, and its President Manuel Rodriguez Torices befriended Bolívar and his compatriots. In Spain liberals had adopted a constitution in 1812. Spaniards occupied the valleys of the Magdalena River and had cut off Cartagena from the interior. On 25 July 1812 Miranda and Monteverde signed a capitulation by which the republican provinces recognized the Spanish Cortes.
      Nariño came into conflict with Antonio Baraya and got the Assembly to suspend the Constitution and declare him the dictator. After a failed military campaign against the federalists, Nariño restored the Constitution. When the federalists conspired to kill him, Nariño resigned. On 12 September 1812 the Assembly appointed him the dictator again. In October representatives from Cartagena, Antioquia, Casanare, Cundinamarca, Pamplona, Popayan, and Tunja formed the United Provinces of New Granada and elected Camilo Torres as their first president. Baraya’s secretary was young Francisco de Paula Santander, who reported that the discontent of the towns deprived of self-government caused Baraya to disobey Nariño who clashed with this Congress. After another failed military expedition with 1,500 men, he returned to Bogotá and fortified the capital. Nariño tried to negotiate with Baraya, who demanded surrender.
      On 9 January 1813 Baraya attacked with 3,000 poorly armed men, and over a thousand of them were captured by Nariño’s forces. Nariño negotiated an agreement with the Congress recognized him as President of Cundinamarca, and he released the prisoners. In June the electoral college in Bogotá made Nariño dictator for life, and they declared Bogotá independent on July 18. Nariño led 1,400 men south in September and defeated the royalists at Juanambu and in Popayan in January 1814. The royalist Governor Col. Juan Samano fled to Pasto, and the royalist pastusos defeated the republicans on 11 May 1814. Nariño surrendered himself and was held in a dungeon for thirteen months. Then he was taken to Quito, Callao, and around Cape Horn to Cadiz, where he was imprisoned for four more years before being freed by the Spanish revolution of 1820.

Bolívar in Venezuela 1808-11

      Simon Bolivar was born 24 on July 1783 in Caracas to wealthy Creole aristocrats. His father died when he was three years old, and his mother died six years later. His inheritance made him one of the richest men in Caracas. Bolivar traveled to Spain in 1799, and at court he was under the protection of Manuel Mallo and then the Marques de Ustariz. In 1802 he married the daughter of a nobleman from Caracas. They settled in Caracas, but she died of disease before their first anniversary. He said he would never remarry, but he had mistresses. Bolivar went to Paris, where he lived with Fanny du Villars. He read books and was most influenced by Hobbes, Spinoza, Locke, Condillac, Buffon, D’Alembert, Helvetius, Montesquieu, Voltaire, and especially Rousseau. In Paris he met Alexander von Humboldt, who originated the science of ecology and had traveled widely in South America for five years. On 2 December 1804 Bolivar witnessed Napoleon crowning himself. He had admired him as the hero of the republic and the genius of liberty, but now he saw the Emperor Napoleon as “a hypocritical tyrant, an insult to liberty and an obstacle to the progress of civilization.”2 In 1805 Bolivar adopted “Freedom and Fame” as his motto, and his old tutor Simon Rodriguez reminded him of the teachings of Rousseau. On the Monte Sacro in Rome, where the ancient plebeians had challenged the patricians, Bolivar made a vow to Rodriguez that he would liberate his country.
      Bolivar returned to Venezuela in 1807 after Miranda’s failed revolution. He came into conflict with his neighbors over his plan to irrigate his indigo plantation, and he defended himself against the armed slaves of Antonio Nicolas Briceño. In November the French army attacked Portugal, and Napoleon deposed the house of Braganza. On 5 May 1808 Napoleon persuaded Carlos IV and his powerful chief minister, Manuel de Godoy, to abdicate the throne of Spain. The Emperor named his brother Joseph Bonaparte to rule Spain and appointed viceroys and governors for the American colonies. Venezuela’s Captain-general Juan de Casas learned of this on July 5 but kept it from the public for a while. Napoleon chose Jose Hipolito Odoardo as the deputy for Caracas to the Spanish National Assembly. However, the Supreme Central Junta had two deputies for each province but none for America. French delegates arrived in Caracas, and their presence caused a riot on July 15. Casas ordered three of the ringleaders arrested, and he called a meeting of officials on July 27. The three Army officers were arrested that day and were held for several months.
      Spaniards rebelled and organized guerrilla warfare, proclaiming Fernando VII king. Francisco Miranda sent a letter from London urging the city council of Caracas to govern. In September the Central Supreme Junta of Spain declared war on France. The French delegates were rejected in Venezuela, Mexico, Buenos Aires, Montevideo, and La Paz as the Americans also accepted Fernando as king. Most of the Americans turned to the cabildo abierto (open assembly) of their city governments. Spain allowed the South Americans only 12 delegates for fifteen million people while twelve million Spaniards were represented by 36 delegates. The Americans included only three million Europeans along with eight million Indians and four million Africans. Matthew Gallagher and James Lamb brought the first free press to Venezuela, and the first periodical, the Gaceta de Caracas, was published in October.
      On 24 November 1808 some aristocrats in Caracas demanded the right to call an assembly to govern until King Fernando VII regained the throne. Bolivar did not sign the petition, and those who did were arrested. The leader Antonio Fernandez de Leon was sent to Spain. In January 1809 Spain formed an alliance with England against the French. The petitioners were reprieved on February 18. Vicente de Emparan arrived as the new Captain-general of Venezuela in May, but the new inspector of the militia was Bolivar’s brother-in-law Fernando Rodriguez de Toro. The first attempt to depose Emparan was on December 14, and an uprising was planned for April 1810, but Emparan had some leaders arrested and banished others, including the Bolivars. Yet he returned to Caracas a few days later, and the revolutionaries sought to establish the Junta Central as the government.
      On April 19 the City Council was summoned to meet by its Vice President Mayor Jose de las Llamozas, though only Emparan could legally call the meeting. They invited him to attend, and he agreed. After Juan German Roscio, Jose Felix Sosa, and the religious canon Jose Cortes Madariaga joined the meeting, the City Council decided to depose Emparan and his staff. They called it the Supreme Junta for the Conservation of the Rights of Fernando VII. They sent Bolivar to London to confer with Miranda. On May 3 the Junta sent notification to the Spanish Regency government that Venezuela had withdrawn from its dominion. The Regency reacted by calling them rebels and appointing Fernando Miyares as captain-general and sending Antonio Cortabarria of the Spanish Supreme Council of the Indies to Puerto Rico to prepare a naval squadron to defeat Venezuela. The Junta appealed to other towns, and they were joined by Barcelona on April 27, Cumana on the 30th, Margarita on May 4, Barinas on the 5th, and Guayana on the 11th. Mérida would join on September 16 and Trujillo on October 6, but Coro and Maracaibo stayed out. The Junta called for elections on June 11, and voting was restricted to the free classes.
      Buenos Aires constituted a temporary assembly on May 25, and Viceroy Antonio Jose Amar y Borbon of New Granada was overthrown at Bogota on July 20. Similar revolutions in Chile and Mexico soon followed. The Creole aristocrats had made a revolution for liberty but rarely mentioned equality and fraternity.
      In June 1810 Bolivar was promoted to colonel of the militia, and the official reason for his mission to England was to preserve trade. He met with the new foreign minister, Richard Wellesley, and told him that independent Venezuela would not recognize the Regency-council of Spain. Wellesley promised that the British fleet would protect Venezuela from the French and would work for reconciliation between Venezuela and Spain. He advised Venezuela to preserve friendly trading relations with Spain. The Regency-council at Cadiz allowed trade between England and the American colonies, but they declared Venezuelans rebels and blockaded their coast. Bolivar recommended declaring war on Spain. He was grateful for the protection of the British navy, and he studied their parliamentary institutions. He told friends that he hoped for an American federation, and in his painted portrait he wore a medal with the words, “There is no country without freedom.” Bolivar told Miranda to return to Venezuela. Miranda was considered an enemy of Spain and could not travel on the same warship as Bolivar.
      The government in Caracas proclaimed freedom of trade, abolishing duties and the sales tax. They offered refuge to Spaniards fleeing Europe and pledged to support the war against France. Bolivar joined the Patriotic Society for improving agriculture and industry, and this group advocated complete independence. The Venezuelan provinces of Coro, Maracaibo, and Guayana remained loyal to the Regency-council, mostly because they did not like Caracas, and they called up their militias. The Marqués of Toro was appointed General-in-Chief of the Western Army and marched against Coro with 3,000 men in November 1810; but they were poorly equipped and retreated with heavy losses. A conspiracy of Puerto Rican Spaniards was suppressed without violence.
      Public opinion and Bolivar persuaded authorities to grant Miranda permission to enter the country, and they arrived together on December 5 at La Guaira. Bolivar’s brother Juan Vicente went to the United States in May 1811 and met with President Madison, but instead of buying arms he sent back weaving, paper, and minting machines. Juan Vicente died at sea on his return, and Simon Bolivar took over his wealthy estate. However, according to his uncle’s entail, he had to choose between his estate and his brother’s.
      On 2 March 1811 the new Venezuelan Congress met in Caracas. The Junta resigned, and the Congress elected three members to govern as a triumvirate. They appointed a Council of advisors, a High Court of Justice, and set up commissions to compose a constitution and laws. On July 1 the Congress accepted a Bill of Rights that abolished torture and protected press freedom. Two days later they began debating independence, and on July 5 seven of the ten provinces in the Captaincy-general of Venezuela declared independence, and the Congress ratified it two days later. The three provinces that chose to remain under Spanish rule were Maracaibo, Coro, and Guayana. Miranda brought a new flag that was yellow, blue, and red, and people celebrated on July 14, Bastille Day. Bolivar and some other aristocrats freed their slaves. Roscio, the author of The Triumph of Liberty Over Despotism, and Francisco Iznardi wrote the Act of Independence, and the Gaceta de Caracas printed it on the 16th.
      On July 11 Spaniards and Capucin monks opposing independence paraded with theatrical pageants mocking the revolution. Sixty men from the Canary Islands rode mules and wore tin helmets, shouting for the King and against traitors. They were arrested; Miranda advised the death sentence, and sixteen were executed and had their heads put on poles by the city gates. Valencia revolted on July 13, but paradoxically its Spaniards supported the republic and its native Venezuelans the King. Miranda accepted command of the army on the condition that Bolivar was not included in the expedition. Bolivar objected, but this was resolved by Toro naming Bolivar his adjutant. Africans rose up in Valencia, and Miranda with Bolivar besieged Valencia, which capitulated on August 13. Bolivar wanted to liquidate the enemies, but Miranda was lenient. The next day the Junta established the Patriotic Society for Agriculture and Economy to promote economic development, but it became political about the time Bolivar and Miranda joined in December. The newspaper El Patriota Venezolano became their organ, and three other newspapers also published articles pleading for liberty.
      The Congress debated constitutional provisions for five months, and on December 21 the Constitution of the Federated States of Venezuela was signed by 37 representatives. The presidency was a committee of three, and the seven states had liberal autonomy. African slavery was abolished, but full citizenship was limited to those with property. Bolivar and Miranda believed the country was too divided. Provinces and cities fought each other, especially after the three million pesos in the royal treasury were spent in the first year of independence. In August 1811 state employees had their salaries cut in half. The government issued two million pesos in paper money, but lack of income from customs duties and the tobacco monopoly did not support the notes. Prices went up fast, and severe penalties were used to prevent gold and silver from going out of circulation. People spent large notes to get silver as change, and forged notes circulated. Some private citizens helped pay the civil servants and soldiers. The capital of Venezuela was moved to Valencia in October.

Bolivar in Venezuela 1812-13

      Congress met in Valencia from February to April 1812. In March they elected Fernando Toro, Javier Ustariz, and Iznardi as the new triumvirate. A major earthquake on 26 March, 1812 was interpreted by many as a sign of God’s anger, though many of those killed were in churches on Holy Thursday. Nearly ten thousand people were killed in Caracas and La Guaira and four thousand elsewhere. Royalist regions seemed to be spared, and many priests preached that it was a sign from God against the revolution. Bolivar worked to dig out the wounded and with soldiers dispersed an excited crowd that had been stirred up by a monk. The government issued manifestos that it was a natural phenomenon. On April 16 the Executive Power of Valencia threatened all enemies of the Venezuelan Confederation with the death penalty for conspiracy against the regime, and it would be applied to those who refused conscription under the military law of 19 June 1812. After Toro declined the offer, Congress gave Miranda dictatorial powers on April 23. He put Col. Ustariz in charge of defending Valencia; but he evacuated the capital as most people joined the royalists. People acclaimed Juan Domingo Monteverde as he entered Valencia on May 3. Miranda tried to retake the capital; but he was undermined by aristocratic creoles, and hundreds of men defected.
      Maracaibo’s Governor Fernando Miyares put 500 men under Monteverde, and Coro’s commander Jose Ceballos sent 264 men under the priest Torrellas and Reyes Vargas, who was backed by Indians. Monteverde captured Carora and Barquisimeto. Many troops and cavalry went over to Monteverde, who allowed looting while Ceballos did not. Miranda sent Bolivar to defend Puerto Cabello, where the San Felipe fortress had an arms supply and political prisoners. Miranda missed opportunities while training his army. He proclaimed martial law and promised to emancipate all slaves serving under him.
      Captain Antoñanzas captured Calabozo for the royalists and released prisoners that included Jose Tomas Boves who had defeated Ustariz. Monteverde flanked Miranda on the north and the south, forcing him to retreat to Victoria in June. Miranda’s forces won a battle but did not pursue the enemy, and his officers wanted to arrest him. The royalists attacked Puerto Cabello, killing more than a hundred men. The small garrison surrendered on July 6 as Bolivar and seven officers fled by ship to La Guaira. Monteverde held the central region around Caracas, but Miyares was still in command over Maracaibo, Coro, and Guayana. Miyares wanted to punish the rebels, but Monteverde persuaded him to withdraw to Coro. Miranda’s army disintegrated, and he capitulated on 25 July 1812.
      The royalists entered Caracas on the 30th. Miranda went to La Guaira where he was arrested. A war council, which included Bolivar, Casas Leon, and Dr. Miguel Peña, accused Miranda of taking money and arranging his escape. They turned him over to the Spaniards, who put him in prison until his death in 1816. Other leaders were also arrested, and eight were sent to prison at Cadiz. Monteverde arrested many civilians in August, and many believed that he was violating the general amnesty of the capitulation. Roscio was pilloried and shipped to Spain. According to Judge Jose Francisco Heredia, 723 men were unjustly imprisoned. Heredia also reported that Bolivar intended to join Wellington’s army to fight for Spain’s liberty; but when authorities confiscated his brother’s estate, he changed his mind. Casas Leon and Dr. Peña were given immunity, and Francisco Iturbe persuaded Monteverde to give Bolivar a pass so that he could go to Cartagena.
      Bolivar asked the government of Cartagena to help him liberate Venezuela. On December 15 in his “Memorial to the Citizens of New Granada” known as the “Manifesto of Cartagena” Bolivar analyzed the defeat in Venezuela and warned that the Americans must unify their government, or they will suffer civil war. He promised that if they entered Venezuela, they would be joined by thousands of patriots eager to overthrow the tyrants and defend their liberty. He was supported by his friends Manuel Rodriguez de Torices who governed Cartagena and President Camilo Torres of the Union of New Granada. The Cartagena government commissioned the French captain Pierre Labatut and put Bolivar under his command. Although only ordered to defend Barrancas, Bolivar quickly organized two hundred men and attacked Tenerife; by December 27 his troops had taken Mompox. Labatut wanted him court martialed, but President Torres defended Bolivar’s victorious campaign. Labatut marched into Santa Marta in January 1813 and granted a general amnesty.
      A thousand Spaniards led by Ramon Correa were advancing toward Colombia from the east. Bolivar was given permission to enter Venezuelan provinces, and Col. Manuel del Castillo in the south asked him for help. Bolivar led the patriots, into Venezuela, and on 28 February 1813 without ammunition they attacked with bayonets Correa’s Spaniards at Cucuta and captured needed money. The next day Bolivar occupied San Antonio de Tachira. President Torres promoted Bolivar to brigadier general and commander in the north. He ordered Castillo to attack the Spaniards, and he reluctantly did so and then resigned. Bolivar even threatened to shoot young Francisco de Paula Santander whom he called the “man of laws” because of his adherence to constitutional principles. He was welcomed as a liberator in Mérida on May 23.
      Because the revolutionaries held the capital, the new Governor and Captain-general of New Granada, Francisco Montalvo y Ambulodi, took up residence in Santa Marta on May 30. After Bolivar doubled his army, they marched into the capital of Trujillo on June 14. The next day he issued his famous decree to the people of Venezuela, promising to destroy Spaniards and Canary Islanders who did not support the American side while forgiving the past trespasses of Americans. He believed that in a war to the death the people would fight harder for their liberty than the royalists would for their king. Bolivar’s uncle, Jose Felix Ribas, fought off a rearguard attack ordered by Monteverde, and four hundred prisoners joined the army of independence. On July 6 Bolivar captured 200,000 pesos from the Barinas treasury of the tobacco administration, and he used it to pay his soldiers back wages. In the west Ribas led two bayonet attacks on the Spaniards that enabled his forces to reunite with Bolivar’s at San Carlos on July 28.
      Bolivar now had 2,500 troops, and the 1,200 Spaniards retreated to Valencia. Bolivar attacked them with cavalry, and they killed the officers and captured most of the men, who joined the republican army. Forces led by Atanasio Girardot pursued Monteverde while Bolivar entered Valencia on 2 August 1813. He granted amnesty and allowed people to leave independent Venezuela. He demanded the surrender of Caracas and the port of La Guaira, and four days later he entered the capital as a liberator. On August 8 Bolivar wrote to the New Granadan Congress commission which had appointed him that he had established the republic of Venezuela with their help and that he would govern until a  government was set up. The next day he convoked a popular assembly which gave him the title Liberator and appointed him Captain-general of the Armies on August 14 and eventually confirmed his supreme power on 2 January 1814.
      Bolivar had restored patriotic governments in Trujillo and Mérida, but Spaniards still held Coro and Maracaibo. Monteverde was in Puerto Cabello with 6,000 supporters. Bolivar delayed reviving the federal constitution and assumed dictatorial power, appointing administrators of finance, war, and the interior. He demanded that the Archbishop of Caracas withdraw his advice to support the Spanish monarchy, and he ordered priests to explain republican principles at least once a week. The Venezuelan economy was paralyzed, and Bolivar organized a state monopoly on tobacco. To stop contraband trading he made tax evasion and secret dealings capital crimes with the state confiscating their property. He urged patriots to contribute, and state employees shared their salaries with soldiers. Every property owner had to support at least one soldier. He founded the Order of the Liberation of Venezuela to honor patriots such as Ribas, Girardot, and Rafael Urdaneta. Bolivar himself claimed only the title Liberator of Venezuela.
      In eastern Venezuela the young General Santiago Mariño had started with 45 men and five guns in January 1813, but by August his forces had occupied Cumana and Barcelona. Mariño wanted to partition Venezuela, but Bolivar was determined to achieve unity. Because Mariño declined to cooperate, Bolivar’s army had to fight most of the Spaniards. He used spies to uncover conspiracies, and sixty Spaniards and Americans were executed on September 21. A naval attack on La Guaira was not fooled by the presence of Spanish officers released from prison by Ribas, and the convoy brought to Puerto Cabello 1,200 more troops. Monteverde led an attack from Puerto Cabello, forcing Bolivar to lift the siege. However, the Spaniards were defeated at Barbula on September 30, though Girardot was killed. At Las Trincheras on October 3 Bolivar decisively defeated Monteverde who retreated to Puerto Cabello again.
      Although Mariño had pushed some of the Spanish forces east to Guayana, Jose Tomas Boves and Francisco Morales led predatory raids in the plains with llaneros (herders) seeking loot. Monteverde commissioned Boves a cavalry captain, and he and Morales gathered about 2,000 lancers. Boves and the chieftain Jose Yañez defeated the patriots in Santa Catalina on 20 September 1813 and then looted Villa del Cura. Bolivar sent Campo Elias with 1,000 infantry and 1,500 cavalry, and they defeated Boves near Mosquiteros. In the capital Calabozo the patriots killed a quarter of the population. The fighting in the plains was ruthless and cruel, and no pardons were given.
      Ceballos took 350 men from Coro and gathered a force of 2,000 men, and on October 20 at Barquisimeto they defeated Bolivar and Urdaneta, killing 400 and capturing as many. Frustrated Bolivar stripped the first regiment that surrendered of their rank, and he ordered Ribas to shoot all Europeans and recruit all the men in Caracas. Ribas ignored the death orders but enlisted 700 men, mostly students. On November 1 Boves decreed at Guayabal that he would fight his creole enemies to the death and confiscate their property. That month about 2,500 men under Yañez entered abandoned Barinas. Ceballos led an army of 3,700 toward Araure, where Bolivar led his cavalry and defeated Ceballos and then Yañez. Urdaneta wrote that their enemy left more than a thousand dead on the battlefield. Bolivar sent a thousand men against Boves, but they were wiped out at San Marcos in December. For one month Bolivar offered amnesty to deserters.
      After his defeats Napoleon recognized Fernando VII in Spain on 11 December 1813, and he withdrew French forces from the Iberian peninsula. King Fernando cancelled the Constitution of 1812 and all the acts of the Cortes including their abolition of the Inquisition, censorship, and torture; thirty leading liberals were arrested. Bolivar needed arms, but England prohibited the arms trade. The United States refused to sell arms to the revolutionaries because they were trying to purchase Florida from Spain. Venezuela could not produce sophisticated weapons, but Bolivar ordered the manufacture of gunpowder and bullets. He confiscated all precious metals, including silver vessels from churches that were melted down.

Bolivar & Revolution 1814-17

      In January 1814 the Spanish commander Monteverde released all his prisoners. Bolivar called a congress on the first of February, and Caracas’s Governor Cristobal Mendoza suggested they recognize Bolivar as dictator. He declined and suggested Mariño, but Bolivar was confirmed by acclamation. Urdaneta’s forces defeated and killed Yañez near Ostino on February 2. The next day Boves and Morales defeated the patriots led by Vicente Campo Elias at La Puerta, but Boves was wounded. Four days later Ribas forced the llaneros to retreat. Rosete led African slaves shouting for Fernando VII and sacked Ocumare, killing 300; but Ribas drove them out and had all the prisoners shot. Bolivar laid siege again to Puerto Cabello. Leandro Palacios wrote Bolivar that his garrison in La Guaira was too small to guard so many prisoners, and on February 8 the Liberator ordered all the Spanish prisoners in the dungeons and hospitals shot. In three days more than 800 were executed by Palacios in La Guaira, by Juan Bautista Arismendi in Caracas, and by Bolivar in Valencia. A week later Bolivar issued his Manifesto to the Nations of the World on the War to the Death. On February 12 Ribas used students from Caracas to defeat Morales.
      Boves attacked Bolivar on February 20 at San Mateo, and their armies skirmished for several days. The republicans were defended by their artillery, but Elias was over-run and mortally wounded. They fought again on March 24, but Mariño came from Aragua de Barcelona and defeated Boves at Bocachica on March 31. Monteverde returned to Spain and was replaced by Juan Manuel de Cajigal, and his royalist army grew to 5,000. Bolivar attacked them on May 28 on the plains of Carbobo and forced them to flee. However, on June 15 Boves with an army of 3,000, equal to Bolivar’s, trounced the patriots at La Puerta, taking no prisoners but reducing their force by a thousand men and capturing their artillery. Bolivar lost his Secretary of State Muñoz and four colonels but escaped. He left Caracas for eastern Venezuela on July 6. Valencia capitulated to Boves four days later, but Boves broke his oath and had the governor shot while letting his men kill 300 soldiers, 60 officers, and 90 civilians. Boves went to Caracas on July 16 and established a tyranny more severe than Monteverde’s. He ignored Spain’s appointment of Cajigal as captain-general. Boves freed slaves and promoted mulattos, mestizos, and pardos to high military ranks, and his soldiers supported his leadership.
      Bolivar and 20,000 people traveled 400 kilometers to Barcelona province. He could only muster 2,500 soldiers, and they were defeated by Morales on August 17 at the battle of Aragua in which nearly 4,000 men were killed. Bolivar escaped again and sent 24 chests of church treasures to Cumana, where he and Mariño got most of it back from Mariño’s piratical captain Jose Bianchi. When Ribas and Mariño’s chief-of-staff Manuel Piar outlawed Bolivar and Mariño, they returned the treasure and were even arrested for two days. Ribas had fought on until he was defeated on 5 December 1814 at Urica, where Boves was killed by a spear. Ribas escaped but was betrayed by a slave and beheaded on 31 January 1815. Venezuela once again belonged to Spain.
      On 16 February 1815 and expeditionary force led by General Pablo Morillo sailed from Cadiz with five warships and 42 transports carrying 10,642 soldiers. In April the Spanish fleet took the island of Margarita, and over the objection of Morales, Morillo pardoned Arismendi. The expeditionary force landed in Venezuela and took Barranquilla. The largest warship San Pedro was destroyed by sabotage, killing 900 men. On May 12 General Morillo entered Caracas with Spain’s largest army in America. His mission was to pacify America, and he proclaimed a general amnesty. Anyone guilty of killing a soldier who had surrendered would be shot. Governor Montalvo moved to Caracas and revived the Consulado on 23 October 1816.

      Despite his second failure in Venezuela, in September 1814 Bolivar was welcomed at Cartagena as a hero for his valiant efforts, though he was criticized by Col. Castillo. Urdaneta managed to bring his division of the army west to Colombia. Bolivar went to Tunja in November and appealed to the Congress of the United Provinces and its President Camilo Torres. Bolivar was appointed captain-general of the Colombian Federation’s armies. He marched on Bogota, where the Archbishop had excommunicated him. Bolivar adopted a more conciliatory approach and promised to spare Spanish prisoners and release rebels. The state of Cundinamarca had rebelled. After two days of battle, Manuel de Bernardo Alvarez, who had succeeded Nariño as President of Cundinamarca, capitulated on December 12.
      Bolivar urged all Colombians to fight Spanish tyranny, saying, “War is the epitome of all evil; but tyranny is the substance of all war.”3 He assigned Urdaneta to defend the border with Venezuela and headed for the coast to attack the Spaniards in Santa Marta. Bolivar liberated Ocaña and Mompox and drove the Spaniards toward the sea, but Governor Castillo of Cartagena disobeyed his orders and even arrested his friends. At Mompox a smallpox epidemic wiped out half his army, leaving him with only a thousand men. Bolivar faced civil war with Cartagena and resigned on May 8, 1815. He sailed for Jamaica the next day.
      Morillo left Salvador Moxo to govern Venezuela in July and invaded New Granada, landing at Santa Marta. On August 22 Morillo and Morales besieged Cartagena, which suffered starvation and pestilence before surrendering on December 6. Morillo captured thirteen ships of food sent to Cartagena by patriots and demanded the city contribute 100,000 pesos to his war effort. Leaders of the resistance were given quick trials and were hanged. Morillo subjugated Cartagena and then moved his troops into Bogota, where he executed Torres and Torizes and one hundred others. Yet he released hundreds of prisoners, mostly Indians and Africans. In March 1816 Morillo reconquered Antioquia and Popayan, and Bogota was besieged and overcome in May. In the pogrom about five hundred patriots were executed. The lawyer, naturalist and engineer Francisco Jose de Caldas was captured, and Morillo ordered his death. When people asked him to spare the scientist, he replied that Spain does not need the wise. Caldas was executed on October 29. Other victims included Lozano, Torres, Gutierrez, and Baraya. Peasants were forced to abandon their fields and build roads.

      Meanwhile Bolivar borrowed money in Jamaica from the Englishman Maxwell Hyslop. One night Bolivar slept in the house of a French woman, and a courier sleeping in his hammock was assassinated by the African slave Pio, who admitted Spaniards offered him 2,000 pesos. Whether the murder was ordered by Morillo is unclear, but he did have orders to put prices on the heads of all rebel leaders.
      On 6 September 1815 Bolivar wrote a reply to a Jamaican, and he borrowed money to publish it as “The Jamaica Letter.” He referred to the history of Spanish atrocities and praised the humanitarian work of Bartolomé de Las Casas. Bolivar expressed that the hatred between the peninsula and the Americans had grown larger than the ocean between them. He wrote, “The chains have been broken; we have been freed, and now our enemies seek to enslave us anew. For this reason America fights desperately.”4 Bolivar described the independence efforts in La Plata, Chile, Peru, New Granada, Venezuela, and Mexico. He argued that 16,000,000 Americans must defend their rights or suffer repression from Spain, which was an empire but is now weak. He described Americans as a young people in a world apart. Americans under the Spanish system are treated like serfs who are forbidden to grow European crops and suffer from royal monopolies and trade restrictions. Montesquieu had observed that releasing a nation from servitude is harder than enslaving a free nation. South Americans were aspiring to liberal institutions for justice, liberty, and equality. Bolivar hoped to see America unified into the greatest nation in the world. Yet he explained why he did not favor monarchies in America.

The well understood interest of a republic is limited
to the matter of its preservation, prosperity, and glory.
Republicans, because they do not desire powers
which represent a directly contrary viewpoint,
have no reason for expanding the boundaries of their nation
to the detriment of their own resources,
solely for the purpose of
having their neighbor share a liberal constitution.
They would not acquire rights or secure any advantage
by conquering their neighbors,
unless they were to make them colonies,
conquered territory, or allies, after the example of Rome.
But such thought and action are directly contrary
to the principles of justice
which characterize republican systems;
and, what is more,
they are in direct opposition to the interests of their citizens,
because a state, too large of itself
or together with its dependencies,
ultimately falls into decay.
Its free government becomes a tyranny.
The principles that should preserve the government
are disregarded, and finally it degenerates into despotism.
The distinctive feature of small republics is permanence:
that of large republics varies,
but always with a tendency toward empire.
Almost all small republics have had long lives.5

Bolivar concluded that Americans will fight for freedom and will ultimately succeed. He hoped for an assembly of representatives from republics to settle issues of peace and war, as Abbé St. Pierre had proposed for Europe. He predicted that New Granada would unite with Venezuela and would be called Colombia. He hinted that a liberal nation (England) could help Americans gain their independence from Spain.
      Bolivar foresaw seventeen free republics arising in South America. They needed guns, munitions, warships, money, and a few volunteers, but Bolivar could not buy weapons in Jamaica. He was given enough support to sail for Cartagena in December; but on the way they learned that the city had fallen. So Bolivar went to independent Haiti, arriving at Port-au-Prince on the last day of 1815. The next day Bolivar met with republican Haiti’s President Alexander Pétion, who promised him support provided that Bolivar agreed to recognize Haiti and free all the slaves in the countries he liberated. Pétion secretly arranged for Bolivar to get arms and ammunition, and the Curaçao merchant Luis Brion chartered a small fleet.
      Many politicians and soldiers fleeing from Cartagena also arrived in Haiti. Bolivar called a meeting that included Mariño, Francisco Bermudez, Piar, Palacios, Brion, Louis Aury, Gregor MacGregor, Ducoudray-Holstein, and Francisco Antonio Zea. Bolivar proposed having one strong leader. Brion said his fleet could be used if it was Bolivar, and they agreed. However, Bermudez objected, and Aury ordered the schooner La Constitucion to attack Mexico; but this was cancelled by President Pétion. Personal conflicts led to four challenges to duels. Brion was appointed the first admiral and Zea the chief administrator of the new republic. Brion’s fleet sailed on March 31, 1816 with 240 men but with arms for 6,000 and a printing press. Delays occurred while Bolivar waited for his mistress Josefina Machado to come aboard. On May 3 they overcame the Spanish ships blockading Margarita Island, where six months before, Arismendi had overthrown the Spaniards and freed the island of Margarita. On May 7 aristocrats there recognized Bolivar as supreme chief of the Republic. The next day Bolivar proclaimed this and summoned a National Congress. Next the patriots landed at Carupano, and Bolivar sent out troops under Carlos Soublette, Piar, and Mariño.
      Many pardos (of mixed race) joined the army of liberation in 1815 and 1816. Decrees on June 2, 1816 and July 6 freed slaves; but men between the ages of 14 and 60 had to join their army within 24 hours, or their families remained slaves. A price of 10,000 pesos was put on Bolivar’s head. Spaniards expected him to attack them at the Orinoco River, but Bolivar headed for Caracas instead. Mariño and Piar went east to recruit support. The fleet landed at Ocumare in July. Morales attacked Soublette, and after a battle the patriots fled. The fleet left with tropical fruits they could sell at Curaçao. Bolivar received a report that Morales had taken Ocumare and took the last ship leaving. The report was false, and the officers remaining at Ocumare were soon captured by Morales along with 1,000 guns and 60,000 bullets that had been abandoned on the beach. At sea Bolivar persuaded a captain to take three ladies to St. Thomas. Mariño and Bermudez called Bolivar a deserter and traitor, and they claimed independent command of their army. Bolivar returned to Port-au-Prince and was again supported by Pétion, who had just been elected President of Haiti for life.
      In September 1816 MacGregor led an army of 600 that doubled while marching to Barcelona, which he occupied after killing 600 Spanish troops. In October a war council organized by Piar appointed Bolivar commander-in-chief. Piar defended Barcelona from an attack by Morales, who suffered heavy losses and fled west. Bolivar sent Paez to liberate the Orinoco while he himself led a newly recruited army of only 700 that was defeated at Clarines and retreated to Barcelona. Piar had an army of 1,500 and went to the Orinoco to conquer Guayana. In November 1816 Arismendi offered refuge on Margarita to patriots. On December 31 a second expedition landed at Barcelona, and Bolivar inaugurated the third period of the republic. During these wars between 1810 and 1816 the annual exports of cacao fell from 120,000 fanegas to 30,000, and coffee went from 80,000 quintals to 20,000.

Bolívar & Venezuela 1817-23

      On 31 December 1816 Simón Bolívar returned to the Barcelona province in Venezuela and inaugurated the third period of the republic. In January 1817 General-in-Chief Manuel Piar refused to help Bolívar who faced a royalist army of nearly 4,000 marching into Barcelona. Bolívar held out in the fortified monastery of St. Francis while the Spaniards entered the city in February. However, Santiago Mariño was coming with 1,200 men, and the Spanish army left. This allowed Bolívar to move out to the Orinoco River.
      General Pablo Morillo sent about 1,500 royalists led by General Miguel de la Torre to relieve the siege of Angostura. Píar‘s army of about 1,800 revolutionaries on April 11 at San Félix defeated them, killing 593 royalists and capturing 497 while only 31 revolutionaries died. On the 17th the Spaniards left Angostura.
      In the Guayana province the Capucin monks were governing 7,000 natives. Piar subjugated these missions and imprisoned the Spanish monks, and on April 12 he defeated a Spanish force under General Miguel de la Torre that General Pablo Morillo had sent to Angostura. Bolívar reached the northern shore of the Orinoco and ordered the monks to be sent deeper into the interior, but instead 22 friars were shot. Morillo’s cruel tactics of suppression made reconciliation difficult and revolution more likely.
      In March 1817 Viceroy Francisco Montalvo had reestablished the Royal Audiencia in New Granada. Montalvo resigned in February 1818, and Morillo appointed Juan Samano to replace him.
      In Cariaco in May 1817 a few men organized a government with Mariño as commander-in-chief. However, several officers including Rafael Urdaneta and Col. Antonio José de Sucre left to serve Bolívar. Mariño was defeated and lost Cumana and Barcelona while General Piar was defeating royalists in Guayana. With help from Brion’s fleet, Bolívar helped Piar besiege Angostura in April, and they occupied it on July 18. That month  revolutionaries led by Admiral Bríon defeated 4,000 royalists at sea, capturing 1,731. By August the Spaniards had evacuated the province of Guayana. On September 3 Bolívar decreed that the republic would confiscate the property of royalists, and on October 10 he decreed that it could be given to republican soldiers. Piar resented Bolívar’s coming so far east and asked to be relieved of his post and joined Mariño’s separatist movement. Bolívar summoned Piar, and he was eventually captured and tried for desertion, insurrection, and treason. A war council sentenced him to demotion and death. Bolívar overturned the demotion but allowed Piar to be shot on October 16.
      Mariño responded to Bolívar’s summons, and they reunified the government. Angostura (later City of Bolívar) was made the capital of the republic, and in October 1817 courts and municipal governments were established, protecting trade and river navigation. Bolívar addressed the new State Council on November 1 as the Liberator and Supreme Chief. The executions planned in Santa Fe for November 14 provoked a response by revolutionaries. On December 31 Bolívar left Angostura with 3,000 men and led them over the Andes to the Apure plains. Bolívar and José Antonio Páez met for the first time on 30 January 1818. Páez had won over many llaneros, who before had been fighting for Boves, by allowing them to plunder. Páez combined his army with Bolívar’s giving them 1,000 llanero cavalry. Bolívar forbade mistreatment of the natives, and confiscated property was distributed to the officers and men.
      Bolívar moved north in February 1818; but Morillo with an army half the size of Bolívar’s kept the patriots from taking Calabozo, and the Spanish general refused to negotiate. Bolívar forbade the killing of prisoners, and he marched toward San Pablo without help from Páez. Morillo led fresh troops into battle at El Semén on March 16, killing 800 while capturing 400 men and Bolívar’s papers; but Spanish losses were also heavy, and Morillo was severely wounded by a spear in the abdomen. In April the Spanish Captain Renovales led forty men who were mistakenly let into the patriots’ camp and tried to assassinate Bolívar, but he escaped. On May 2 Páez was defeated at Cojedes and lost Cumana also, forcing the republicans south of the Orinoco.
      Bolívar encouraged the recruiting of volunteers from Britain and Europe. The European wars had ended in 1815, and many soldiers and much equipment were unemployed. Luis Lopez Mendez acted as London agent for the Venezuelan Republic promising money for men and arms. He offered them a higher rank and reimbursement for their transportation, but he gave out so many promissory notes that he was put in debtors’ prison. The British who joined Páez had to get their pay by plundering. Col. Wilson led an effort to make Páez commander of the army, and he was later found to be an agent provocateur sent by the Spanish government. Bolívar improved the training of his army by mixing the experienced Europeans with the Americans. About 150 volunteers arrived in the spring of 1818, and all together about 4,000 Europeans would fight for American independence. The British formed an army of 1,500 men. Bolívar used a printing press they brought to publish the weekly Orinoco Post, which began on 27 June 1818. Bolívar took refuge in San Fernando, and he spent the second half of 1818 in Angostura. He wanted to block supplies coming to the royalists from New Granada, and in August he appointed Col. Santander commander of Casanare province. General Renovales was a Spaniard who volunteered, and he commanded English volunteers; but he went over to the royalists. General José Francisco Bermúdez was defeated in Rio Caribe in October, and Mariño lost 300 men in Cariaco in November.
      In October 1818 the rules for a general election were announced. Only free men owning property or having a profession or an adequate salary could vote, and the elections were conducted by the military commanders. On 15 February 1819 at Angostura 26 elected delegates from Caracas, Barcelona, Cumana, Barinas, Guayana, and Margarita met as a Congress. Bolívar felt honored to call together a democratic assembly and said he was glad to hand over his power to a representational government. He believed in frequent elections and said, “Nothing is more perilous than to permit one citizen to retain power for an extended period.”5 He also warned, “It is harder to maintain the balance of liberty than to endure the weight of tyranny.”6 He recommended democracy even though history had few successful examples. He criticized the federal constitution of 1811 that was based on the United States Constitution, and he noted that Montesquieu had argued that “laws should be suited to the people.” He wanted a strong presidency and a more centralized government. The three values he believed that government should maximize are happiness, social security, and political stability. Their South American revolution was a struggle for popular sovereignty, distribution of power, civil liberties, abolition of slavery, and the ending of monarchy and privileges. The journalist Francisco Antonio Zea was provisionally elected president, and Bolívar handed over his power to him; but on February 16 the Congress of Angostura elected Bolívar president and Zea vice president. Bolívar’s secretary Briceño Mendez was made minister of war, and Manuel Palacio Fajardo was appointed minister of state and treasury.
      Bolívar approved of the House of Representatives established by the constitution of 1811, but after the Senate was elected by the House he wanted it to be hereditary so that their sons could be educated for public service. Bolívar suggested that the soul of a republic is permeated by “love of country, love of law, and respect for magistrates.” He wanted the president to supervise the administration and the judges in order to prevent abuses of the law. He said that popular education, morality, and enlightenment are the foundation of a republic. Bolívar asked for a fourth branch of government to regulate morals, like the ancient Roman censors. He felt personally obligated to abolish slavery and compensate the patriots for their losses. He promised that Venezuela would reject any foreign interference, and he proposed uniting Venezuela with New Granada as Colombia. Zea was provisionally elected president, and Bolívar handed over his power to him; but the next day the Congress elected Bolívar president and Zea vice president. Bolívar’s secretary Luis Briceño Mendez was made minister of war, and Manuel Palacio Fajardo was appointed minister of state and treasury.
      General Morillo had 7,000 men in his royal army at Calabozo. In the plains Bolívar’s men set fire to the pampas grass and crops to starve the Spanish cavalry. On 2 April 1819 Páez lured Spanish cavalry to pursue his forces, which then turned and destroyed them, killing four hundred while losing only six men. These tactics reduced Morillo’s army by half. On 25 November 1820 Bolívar and Morillo agreed to an armistice for six months with Morillo accepting Bolívar’s presidency of the Republic. Morillo went to Spain and left La Torre in command of the Spanish royalists. On 24 June 1821 Bolívar’s army defeated them at Carabobo, and they entered Caracas in triumph five days later to establish Venezuela’s independence. Royalist forces held out at Puerto Cabello. On 24 July 1823 Bolívar led Colombia’s navy that defeated the Spanish fleet on Maracaibo Lake in Venezuela, and Páez led the Venezuelan independence forces that finally captured Puerto Cabello on November 8.

Peru’s Revolution 1819-22

      In February 1819 Chile and Argentina formed an alliance promising to contribute funds to invade Peru. Buenos Aires pledged 500,000 pesos and sent 300,000 plus armaments. Bernardo O’Higgins’ attempt to raise 300,000 pesos was resisted in Chile. Their navy needed 700,000 pesos itself, and they made contracts with foreign merchants for loans based on customs revenues and for a share of prize money warships would “earn.” Contractors hired sixteen transports from a private company by August 1820. Supe was the first municipality to declare independence in April 1819, and it was followed the next year by the cabildos of Ica, Tarma, and Lambayeque.
      The heroic San Martín was concerned that victory would cost the spilling of American blood, and he worked patiently for peaceful conquests from “irresistible necessity.” He raised an army of nearly 500,000 men, but Peru with reinforcements from Cuzco and Upper Peru and militia units had about 12,000 troops. After the Spanish army mutinied at Cadiz in 1820, Pezuela, the Marquess of Viluma, was instructed to implement Spain’s Constitution in Peru, restore elected cabildos, and allow liberal reforms. San Martín and his revolutionary army captured Valdivia on 4 February 1820, and on August 20 he led an expedition from Valparaiso with 31 ships from Chile’s navy carrying 4,700 soldiers and equipment for 15,000 more. They reached Paracas on September 7 and occupied Pisco that was abandoned by royalists. On the 25th San Martín sent commissioners to a peace conference at Miraflores, and they agreed on an armistice for eight days. The royalists would not accept San Martín’s insistence on independence even under a Spanish monarch. So he sent a force led by General Arenales north to cut Lima off from the interior, and they defeated the royalists at Cerro de Pasco on 6 December. San Martín had led his army beyond Lima to Ancon on November 1 and then to Huacho seventy miles north of Callao, separating the capital from the agricultural region of northern Peru. His strategy was to blockade Lima, but the aggressive British Admiral Thomas Cochrane wanted the navy to attack Callao and Lima. San Martín controlled the land forces, but on November 4 Cochrane near Callao captured the 44-gun frigate Esmeralda, considered the best Spanish warship in the Pacific.
      On 29 January 1821 the constitutionalist military mutinied against Viceroy Pezuela. General José de la Serna became viceroy and appointed General Canterac to command the royalist army in the north and General Valdes in the south. Because San Martín accepted monarchy the aristocratic Torre Tagle persuaded the Trujillo Cabildo to declare independence on December 29. Other towns followed, and by May 1821 all of northern Peru had become independent and supplied money and men to San Martín. That month the English officer William Miller led forces against the royalists in central Peru, and General Arenales defeated a detachment in the interior at Pasco. San Martín also won people over without war as desertions increased. In December 1820 the Numan Cia battalion of about 650 men joined the liberators.
      Negotiations began on 4 May 1821, and San Martín met with Viceroy La Serna on June 2. The blockade was working, and on July 6 La Serna evacuated Lima and took his army to the interior. San Martín entered Lima with his troops on the 10th and promised to protect the people. Four days later the aristocratic cabildo abierto declared independence, vindicating his nonviolent strategy. On July 28 the independence of Peru was proclaimed, and on August 3 San Martín was named protector with supreme military and civil power. He appointed ministers and initiated a reform program. On August 12 he decreed an oath of allegiance to independence, and he declared that slaves born in Peru from 28 July 1821 on were free. He granted a pension to military personnel on the liberating expedition from Valparaiso. On August 27 Indian tribute and compulsory labor were abolished, and the aborigines were to be called Peruvians rather than Indians. However, the decrees still needed to be implemented by the creoles.
      San Martín learned on September 4 that General de Canterac was marching his Spanish army of 12,000 hungry men from the interior to relieve Callao; but San Martín declined to attack them with his army of 7,000 because his forces held Lima and controlled the coast. Instead, he strengthened their defenses. Canterac’s army entered Callao on September 10; but they also suffered from shortages and surrendered the fortress a few days later. Admiral Cochrane had lost two warships and could not pay his men. He did not believe the war was over, and San Martín argued that Chile should pay for its own navy. As the squadron was disintegrating, Cochrane seized $285,000 worth of gold and silver from San Martín’s treasure ship, the Sacramento, at Ancon. He paid his crews, gave $40,000 to the army, and kept nothing for himself. This ended his collaboration with San Martín, and Cochrane took his warships to pursue Spanish ships in the Pacific Ocean.
      Peru’s government forced merchants to provide loans, and on 28 September 1821 a provisional commercial law decreed free trade but with a 20% tariff on imports to protect local industries. The Banco Auxiliary was established to finance the war by circulating paper money. In October San Martín founded the Order of the Sun modeled after France’s Legion of Honor. In November he sent Garcia del Rio and the English entrepreneur James Parisian to Europe to secure approval of Peru’s independence, negotiate a loan, and to find a prince who would accept the crown of Peru. On December 19 property worth $500,000 was granted to twenty generals and officers in the liberating army. Unmarried Spaniards were ordered to leave Peru and forfeit half their property, and a few months later married Spaniards were included. Bernardo de Monteagudo and Torre Tagle saw to it that the Iberian peninsulars were expelled and that all their property was taken. Spaniards continued to fight against independence, and on 11 January 1822 Viceroy La Serna ordered the town of Sangallo burned to the ground. For three years creoles and mestizos led the guerrilla monomers who were joined by bandits and harassed retreating royalists and plundered central Peru.
      Liberals in Peru did not want a monarch. The lawyer Manuel Perez de Tugela advocated a republic, and the priest Francisco Javier Luna Pizarro worked against plans for a monarchy. The liberal politician Sanchez Carrion wrote tracts for republicanism. San Martín had an army of 8,000 in the Lima area. He left the Marquis of Torre Tagle in charge and went to confer with Bolívar in Guayaquil, which had declared its independence in 1820. In July 1821 Viceroy La Serna announced that his army was abandoning Lima and moving to the fortress of Callao. After Bolívar’s victory that won Quito in May 1822, he entered Guayaquil. He sent letters in June to San Martín who replied in July. They met there on July 26 and 27, talking for several hours. Bolívar opposed any monarchy in America, and he declined to give San Martín military support. San Martín was frustrated and decided to withdraw and let Bolívar make Peru independent. Monteagudo was overthrown in Lima by Luna Pizarro. Torre Tagle and San Martín himself had lost the support of the ruling class. On September 20 at the first constituent congress in Peru he renounced his power and left Lima. The next day San Martín sailed for Chile and then went to Europe. His wife died in 1823, and in 1825 San Martín wrote the following rules for the indulgent grandmother who was raising his daughter:

1. Humanize her character, making it sensitive,
   even toward insects which do not injure….
2. Instill in her love for truth and hate for lies.
3. Inspire in her confidence and friendship, but with respect.
4. Encourage in Mercedes charity towards the poor.
5. Respect for other people’s property.
6. Get her used to keeping secrets.
7. Inspire in her a feeling of respect toward all religions.
8. Gentleness with servants, the poor and the old.
9. Let her talk little and say only what is necessary.
10. Get her used to being quiet and serious at table.
11.Teach her to love cleanliness
   and to have contempt for luxury.7

Bolívar in Peru & Bolivia 1823-25

      Colombian envoy Joaquin Mosquera had signed a treaty of perpetual union at Lima with San Martín’s foreign minister Bernardo Monteagudo on 6 July 1822. After San Martín resigned and left Peru, the Congress appointed three men who fought each other. None wanted the troops that Bolívar had sent, and they returned to Guayaquil. In January 1823 at Torata and Moquehua the Spaniards led by generals José de Canterac and Jeronimo Valdes defeated the Peruvian army that San Martín had left under General Rudecindo Alvarado, who saved only 500 of his 4,000 men. In 1822 and 1824 Peru got two loans from London worth £1,816,000.
      On 28 February 1823 army leaders forced the Congress to replace the junta with José de la Riva Aguero as the first President of Peru. He appointed his friend Santa Cruz, who was from Bolivia, commander of Peru’s army. Aguero sent General Mariano Portocarrero to ask Bolívar for an expeditionary force to liberate Peru, and on March 18 they signed a treaty between Colombia and Peru. Bolívar promised the Peruvians 6,000 soldiers, but the Colombian Congress did not give him permission to go. He sent General Sucre to command them in Lima; but he refused to accept command of the allies so that they would choose Bolívar. The Spanish general Canterac led 7,000 royalists into Lima in June as Aguero and the Congress fled to Callao. There the Congress deposed Riva Aguero and appointed Bolívar’s envoy General José Antonio de Sucre commander-in-chief. Aguero refused to resign and withdrew with some Congressmen to Trujillo where he raised an army and dissolved the Congress.
      The Spanish held southern Peru while the north was divided by civil war. Peruvian creoles then asked Bolívar for help. Canterac extorted much money by threatening to burn Lima but abandoned it in July. The Congressmen went back to Lima, proclaimed Riva Aguero a traitor, and on August 16 elected as President of Peru the Marquis de Torre Tagle, who used public money to gain support.
      Bolívar received permission from Bogotá to go, and on 1 September 1823 his ship landed in Peru where seven independent armies representing Peru, its Government, its Congress, Buenos Aires, Chile, Guayaquil, and Colombia lacked unity. When Riva Aguero tried to convene the Congress, the army broke it up. They welcomed Bolívar, and on September 10 the Congress gave Bolívar supreme authority with a salary of 50,000 pesos, which he declined. Aguero called Bolívar a usurping tyrant and won over some officers and men. Bolívar gathered an army of 4,000 to confront Aguero’s 3,000. Bolívar persuaded Col. Antonio Gutierrez de la Fuente that Aguero was a traitor, and La Fuente captured him in November. Aguero was allowed to go to Europe.
      On 1 October 1823 the French army released Spain’s King Fernando VII, and he ended liberal reform by abolishing the Constitution. Bolívar felt he could not rely on the Chileans and Argentineans, but he persuaded Admiral George Guise to end his blockade and to recognize the government in Lima. While Bolívar organized the revolution from Pativilca, he put Sucre in command at Lima. Torre Tagle sent home a Chilean contingent from Callao, and Congress returned slaves taken into the army to their former owners. Bolívar recovered from a serious illness in early January 1824. On February 7 the garrison at Callao mutinied for back pay and so that Argentineans and Chileans could go home; they released the Spanish prisoners and surrendered to the royalists. The Congressmen resigned and named Bolívar dictator of Peru before the royalists with help from Torre Tagle occupied Lima again on February 12.
      On 17 February 1824 Peru’s Congress appointed Bolívar dictator and suspended the Constitution. Much silver had come out of the mines, and Bolívar confiscated church treasures to pay his soldiers; but the silver sold raised only 200,000 pesos. Bolívar had only one province while the royalists controlled the rest of Peru. He put the patriot José Sanchez Carrion in charge of civil affairs. Bolívar at Trujillo gathered all the tin and iron he could find to supply his army, and in April he moved to Huamachuco. By then he had about 8,000 men with capable cavalry, and they were paid regularly.
      Viceroy José de La Serna had 1,000 men at Cuzco. General Pedro Antonio de Olañeta had rebelled against Viceroy La Serna’s constitutional administration to set up his own regime at the end of 1823, and he commanded an army of 4,000 in Upper Peru. Spanish General Valdes with an army of about 3,000 in Arequipa was sent to suppress the revolt, but on 9 March 1824 he signed the Treaty of Tarapay with Olañeta who broke the agreement and proclaimed himself commander of the La Plata provinces.
      At Trujillo on April 8 Bolívar decreed that all state lands be offered for sale at one-third their values, and natives were declared proprietors of their lands. Bolívar led his army in a hard march over mountains in May, and he divided his army into three parts to cross the Andes in July. They reunited at Pasco, and he reviewed 6,000 Colombians and 3,000 Peruvians. He said they were saving the world from slavery, and he declared freedom in America the hope of the world. They met the army of Canterac on August 6 on the plateau of Junin, and in the cavalry battle no guns were fired. The royalists had about 250 men killed and fled in disorder while the patriots lost about 150 men.
      Bolívar moved his army to the coast in October 1824 while organizing civil administration. On the 24th the Colombian Parliament rescinded Bolívar’s authority as commander of the Colombian army; but he was replaced by Sucre, who was loyal to the liberator. On December 7 Bolívar sent out invitations to the governments of La Plata, Brazil, Chili, Guatemala, Colombia, and Mexico to send delegates to a congress in Panama to interpret treaties, reconcile disputes, and protect independent governments. The climactic battle for Peru came on December 9 at Ayacucho. Sucre had at least 5,780 men against no more than 9,310 of Viceroy La Serna; but before the battle a few relatives and friends from the opposing sides were allowed to talk, and the royalists believed that the patriots were more determined to fight. La Serna had lost 2,100 killed while Sucre’s army suffered 979 casualties. La Serna was taken prisoner, and Canterac surrendered with 583 officers and 2,000 soldiers.
      The commander at Callao refused to capitulate, and Bolívar besieged the garrison for more than a year. He resigned his presidency of Colombia on December 22. Sucre cleared out the Spanish in the sierra and entered Cuzco on December 24. In January 1825 he went after Olañeta’s army. His nephew Casimiro Olañeta changed sides and persuaded Sucre to declare Upper Peru an independent nation on February 9. The next day the Congress of Peru met in Lima and renewed Bolívar’s dictatorship for another year. They offered him a million pesos which he declined; later he suggested it be contributed to the reconstruction of Caracas. Bolívar appointed José de la Mar, who was from Cuenca, president and the Peruvians Hipolito Unanue and José Sanchez Carrion as councilors to administer the government; but the Colombians Tomas de Here and José Gabriel Perez were resented. The liberators had become troops of occupation. On March 10 the Congress of Peru dissolved itself before Bolívar left for the south.
      General Sucre entered La Paz on 20 February 1825, and in March he captured all the Spanish generals except Olañeta, who was mortally wounded on April 1 at Tumusla before Sucre reached Potosi. Bolívar was taken aback at first by Sucre’s political initiatives in Upper Peru; but after the young general offered to resign, the liberator confirmed his accomplishments. Bolívar arrived at Arequipa in May and called together the deputies of Upper Peru’s legislature. Next he went to Cuzco. He let Sucre summon an assembly at Chuquisaca on July 10, and most of the deputies were graduates of the University of Chuquisaca. They refused to join either Argentina or Peru, and on August 6 they declared their independence and named their new nation Bolívar (which later became Bolivia). The capital Chuquisaca was renamed Sucre. Native Americans were about 80% of the population of Bolivia.
      When clergy in the La Paz cathedral offered the liberator a crown, he passed it to Sucre, who also declined. Bolívar abolished personal service and declared all citizens equal in August. He visited Potosi, and in October he met with a delegation from Argentina which in May had accepted Bolívar’s authority to settle the boundary dispute between Argentina and the province that became Bolivia. Bolívar established local and appellate courts and promised new laws. The state abolished Indian tribute and the consumer taxes of the Spanish regime and confiscated abandoned mines. They converted clerical revenues for education and established orphanages, hospitals, and schools. Bolívar put his old tutor Simon Rodriguez in charge of education. In the fall of 1825 Páez wrote to Bolívar about making him an emperor; but the liberator wrote back that he considered this plan inappropriate, and he reminded his general that the Constitution of Colombia could not be amended until 1831. On 22 December 1825 Bolívar abolished the Indian tribute. From 1819 to 1825 the cost of war materials and imports was paid for by shipping $26,900,000 in British ships from Lima, and the economy was depressed. From 1810 to 1825 the mint in Potosi minted annually less than $500,000, but during the first five months after liberation it minted about $1,000,000. However, speculation in London caused the money market to crash in December 1825, stopping mining operations. In 1826 Bolivia’s imports were £637,407 while exports were worth £722,750 mostly in silver and gold, though the value of the coca trade in La Paz was £143,600.

Bolívar & Colombia 1817-25

      In 1817 the Almeyda brothers led guerilla attacks in the Valle de Tenza near Bogotá. They gathered a force of 250 men, but after the defeat on November 21 the peasants went home. In 1818 the Spanish General Morillo had to withdraw forces from New Granada to fight Simón Bolívar in Venezuela. Bolívar sent Francisco de Paula Santander to organize resistance fighters in Casanare, and he urged the Granadinos to fight for their liberty. On 15 May 1819 he learned that Santander had defeated the royalists in Casanare, and he held a council of war to plan the liberation of New Granada. Bolívar proposed leading his army of 3,000 across the Andes Mountains, but the destination was kept secret. They left the Upper Apure on May 27 and crossed ten large rivers during the rainy season and joined with Santander’s army at Tame. On June 27 Santander led the advance guard that drove the Spaniards led by Col. José Barreiro from their fortified position. Bolívar’s army lost hundreds of men and most of their horses climbing the mountains 5,000 meters high, but the difficult path they took was undefended. The oppressed people of New Granada welcomed them. Bolívar declared martial law and drafted all men able to fight. At Vargas Creek on July 25 Barreiro lost 500 men, Bolívar only 104. As Barreiro retreated, they entered Tunja on August 5. Two days later in a major battle at Boyaca the Americans captured 1,600 men including Barreiro and his staff from his army of 3,000 while only 13 republicans were killed. Most of those who surrendered enlisted in the republican army. Viceroy Samano fled from Bogotá to Cartagena. Bolívar treated the prisoners well except he had Vinoni shot for his treason at Puerto Cabello. Bolívar entered Bogotá on August 10 in triumph and found 500,000 pesos in cash and 100,000 in gold in the state treasury. On the 15th the Congress of Angostura elected Bolívar president and adopted a constitution with many of his ideas.
     President Bolívar allowed much of the government to remain in place; but he confiscated property of Spaniards who had supported the royal cause, and he demanded that the Church tithe to the state treasury. General Francisco de Paula Santander was a jurist from New Granada, and on 11 September 1819 Bolívar made him vice president of New Granada in Bogotá to handle the administration. Santander warned him that the people were more outraged by the Spanish taxes than by their execution of 500 patriots. Santander allowed the opposition press to function, but in October he executed Col. Barreiro and 38 officers imprisoned after the battle of Boyaca. Bolívar promised slaves freedom after they served two years in the army, arguing to others that their fighting for their freedom could diminish their dangerous numbers. The Bishop of Popayan called Bolívar a traitor and excommunicated everyone who supported his cause, but his army soon captured Popayan. Nine provinces in New Granada were liberated by October, and Bolívar appointed military governors in each one. Local mayors and judges remained, but Bolívar established an appellate court in Bogotá. He provided education and assistance to orphans. Bolívar offered Samano an exchange of prisoners but received no reply. He assigned Urdaneta’s army of the north to defend New Granada on the border.
      In Venezuela when Lt. Matthew Perry arrived on a warship in July, the acting President Zea paid the United States an indemnity for two warships that Brion had sunk. General Urdaneta appropriated scarce resources on Margarita Island and opposed the Venezuelan Juan Bautista Arismendi, who disobeyed Zea’s orders and was imprisoned. Zea was from New Granada, and also relieved Mariño of his command. After heated debates in the Congress while Bolívar’s fate was unknown, Arismendi was elected vice president to replace Zea. Arismendi made Mariño commander-in-chief and arrested Urdaneta.
      Bolívar sent the young General Antonio José de Sucre to meet with three royalist commissioners, and on 26 November 1819 they declared an armistice for six months. The next day Bolívar met with Morillo in the village of Santa Ana. Bolívar returned to the Angostura parliament on December 14 and announced that New Granada wanted to join with Venezuela to form Colombia. Arismendi resigned. Plans were made to unify the republics of Venezuela, Colombia, and Ecuador. On December 17 the Congress of Angostura passed the Fundamental Law that created the Republic of Colombia as a permanent union of Venezuela, New Granada, and Quito even though the latter was not yet liberated. Bolívar was unanimously elected president with Zea as his representative. Antonio Nariño was freed from a dungeon during the Spanish Revolution of 1820 and was made interim vice president to preside over a new congress scheduled to meet in Cucuta on the border of New Granada and Venezuela in 1821.
      Bolívar went back to Bogotá, and General Santander called a meeting that unanimously accepted the unified government. Bolívar wanted the crimes of all parties punished so that justice and freedom could triumph. In the previous fall Santander had executed Barreiro and 38 Spanish officers for smuggling out subversive letters; an observer who protested that Bolívar had granted them reprieves was also shot. Bolívar reproached Santander for this because he now believed it hurt their cause.I
      Zea tried to get more loans in London and promised to pay all the debts, some of which were questionable. Bolívar asked Sucre to purchase weapons, and he bought about 5,000 guns in the Antilles. In Europe the Spanish army rebelled on 1 January 1820 and demanded the 1812 Constitution which Fernando VII accepted in May. They disbanded the expeditionary forces planned for America, and General Morillo was ordered to publish the Constitution and to work for reconciliation. Bolívar used the opportunity to negotiate an armistice while royalists led by Col. Calzada marched toward Bogotá and took Popayan on January 24.
      However, in July patriotic forces led by Manuel Valdes regained Popayan. Bolívar sent Mariano Montilla with Irish troops to liberate Santa Marta and Maracaibo. Montilla knew that the previous year after English soldiers had sacked Rio Hacha, the citizens had butchered all but 46 of the 300 English. The Irish were demanding better food and clothing; when Montilla did not allow them to plunder Rio Hacha in lieu of salaries, they mutinied and took ships to Jamaica. The royalist armies had mass desertions, and Bolívar offered Spanish officers promotions and even money to change sides. He occupied the border provinces of Mérida and Trujillo in early October, and Montilla took Santa Marta. Guayaquil in Ecuador declared its independence on 9 October 1820. A few Colombians led by three Venezuelan officers marched on Quito, but they were defeated at Huachi on November 22. The Peruvians had the leaders imprisoned.
      An armistice for six months was signed on November 26, and the next day Bolívar met Morillo at Santa Ana. Sick and wounded prisoners were to be released, and others were exchanged by rank. Because the war was over opinions, those who changed sides were not to be executed. Morillo gave up his command of the army of 15,000 to La Torre and left America in December.
      On the first day of 1821 a constituent congress met at Cucuta and used the Constitution of Angostura as a model. Republicans persuaded Maracaibo to revolt against Spain on January 28. Bolívar sent General Sucre to Guayaquil to work for its annexation to Colombia, and he hoped that Valdes would take Quito. Urdaneta had been born in Maracaibo, and using money and a forged order from La Torre he got the garrison to leave the city during the armistice. Bolívar proposed a court of arbitration, but La Torre wanted Maracaibo back. The armistice ended early on April 28. Urdaneta liberated Coro on May 11; but after he left, the Coreans reverted to Spanish loyalty. Bermúdez entered Caracas on May 14, but he lost it ten days later to Morales. Bolívar combined the armies of Mariño and Páez with his and met La Torre’s equal army of 6,000 on the plains of Carabobo on June 24. La Torre lost more than half his army and fled with Morales to Valencia as 2,000 men surrendered. The remnant of the Spanish army retreated from Valencia to Puerto Cabello and Cumana. Bolívar entered Caracas on the 29th and wrote to La Torre in July to open negotiations so that they could relate as men and not as wild beasts in the detestable arena of mutual extermination. On April 30 Bolívar had learned that Morales was making headway in Maracaibo, Venezuela, but he capitulated in August.
      Bolívar was President of Colombia and appointed General Carlos Soublette to govern Venezuela with Páez as chief general, and on August 1 he left for Bogotá. Nariño led the effort in Cucuta that united the nineteen independent provinces of Colombia. The Constitution of Cucuta was signed on 12 July 1821 and was approved by the new Congress of 57 deputies on August 30. The franchise was limited to those with property worth 100 pesos, and a house of representatives was to be elected for four years and senators with eight-year terms. The president was elected for four years and could only be re-elected once. The president had extraordinary powers only during the emergencies of war or internal rebellion. They anticipated that Quito (Ecuador) would join the union and so placed the capital centrally at Bogotá. Bolívar knew that freeing all slaves would antagonize landowners, but on 19 July 1821 the Congress declared free all Colombians born after that date. The head tax on natives was also abolished. Bolívar was concerned that the commander-in-chief should not also administer justice; but he was persuaded to accept his unanimous election as president on September 7 under the condition that he would be free to campaign for liberation in the south.
      Bolívar left for Bogotá on August first. Bermúdez besieged Cumana which capitulated in September. Montilla had besieged Cartagena for 14 months, and it accepted his generous terms in October. Bolívar took the oath of office as President of Colombia on 3 October 1821, and the Congress ratified the Constitution three days later. They chose Santander instead of Nariño as vice president. Páez, Bermúdez, and Mariño were appointed commanders in Venezuela. Royalist resistance was overcome in Maracaibo, Coro, and Cumana. On 10 November the last Spanish garrison in Venezuela abandoned Puerto Cabello and went to Cuba, making all of Venezuela republican. Even Panama overthrew their Spanish rulers in a nonviolent revolution when Col. José de Fabrega defected to the separatists and convened a national assembly that chose him as head of state on November 28.

      In Ecuador the Spanish Governor Melchor Aymerich defended Quito and had destroyed the revolutionary army from Guayaquil in November 1820. General Sucre brought a force of a thousand men to Guayaquil, and in May 1821 he made a friendship pact with their council. Aymerich sent an army of 3,000 royalists. At first Sucre’s army defeated one division of them; but then they were routed, and Sucre escaped with only a hundred men. Guayaquil revolted against Spain in October, and Sucre agreed to an armistice on November 21. General Juan de la Cruz Murgeon was appointed Spanish governor of New Granada and equipped an army of 800 men in Panama that landed in Ecuador and reached Quito on December 24.
      Bolívar sent Miguel Santamaria to Mexico and Joaquin Mosquera to Peru, Chile, and Buenos Aires. He ordered General Montilla to invade Panama, where patriots revolted and declared independence on 28 November 1821. Bolívar headed south on December 13 and set up his headquarters at Cali in the Cauca Valley. He wanted every young man drafted into the army or his property confiscated. In March 1822 he crossed the valley of Patia with 3,000 men as thirty a day became ill. With his generals Manuel Valdes and Pedro Leon Torres they fought the royalists under Basilio Garcia at Bombona on April 7. Bolívar lost a third of his men in this bloody conflict. That month Sucre’s army crossed the Cordilleras, and on May 24 they attacked Quito from Mt. Pichincha in the north. The patriots won, and Governor Aymerich surrendered. General Garcia heard this news and capitulated in Pasto on June 6 to Bolívar, who promised the royalists safety. Ten days later Bolívar reached Quito and declared Ecuador part of Colombia, and he appointed Sucre president.
      An Argentine division had fought at Pichincha, and they hoped also to liberate Guayaquil; but Bolívar held them at Quito and sent his Colombian army to Guayaquil. Bolívar entered Guayaquil on 12 July 1822, and the next day he decreed the incorporation of Guayaquil into Colombia. He met San Martín on July 25. San Martín wanted a plebiscite to see if Guayaquil wanted to join Peru or Colombia, and Bolívar agreed to send 1,800 men to help liberate Peru from the Spaniards. San Martín suggested that a European prince could govern America. Bolívar adamantly opposed that, though he wanted a president for life and a hereditary senate. They both wanted a federation of states in South America. After attending a celebration San Martín went back to his ship and departed. By the end of July the Guayaquil Council had voted to become part of the Colombian Republic. Bolívar believed that Colombia still needed his army to stay free. He traveled to Cuenca, Quito, and Pasto. Bolívar met his dearest mistress Manuela Saenz de Thorne at Quito. About this time he began to suffer from tuberculosis which had killed his mother.
      Pasto rebelled, and Sucre had to gather more forces to defeat them. All the fighting men who had supported the royalist cause were drafted into the army and had their property confiscated while the pro-Spanish clergy were marched to Quito prisons, many dying on the way. Bolívar approved these and other punishments that were brutally implemented at Pasto by General Bartolomé Salom. In July 1823 Bolívar defeated the Pastusos led by the native Agualongo, killing 800 men as no quarter was given. He banned metal from the region. Salom defeated Agualongo’s 1,500 Pastusos again in August, but they kept fighting back the rest of the year. During the wars the consumption of livestock reduced the number of cattle, horses, and mules from 4,500,000 head in 1812 to 256,000 in 1823.
      In 1824 the Colombian Congress levied an army of 50,000 men to deter Spanish expeditions and borrowed 30 million pesos (equal to $30 million) from English investors. They organized government into departments, provinces, and cantons. They passed laws that made entailed estates illegal, authorized the republic patronato over Church administration but not doctrine, and protected private correspondence and residences from unwarranted government intrusion. Some talented literary men founded the newspaper La Miscelanea in September 1825, and later they edited La Bandera Tricolor, which opposed Páez.
      In 1824 the African Col. Leonardo Infante, a brave warrior who was feared because of his violence, was convicted of a murder by circumstantial evidence. He claimed he was innocent, but based on a majority vote of the Supreme Court in Bogotá he was executed without receiving a commutation by Santander who was his personal enemy. The mulatto judge Miguel Peña would not sign the sentence and was suspended. Santander charged Peña with shady dealings; Peña refused the summons and fled to Valencia in his native Venezuela. General Páez decreed a draft of all men between the ages of 16 and 50 into the militia in order to suppress the roving bands plundering the country around Caracas. Late in 1825 the Caracas commander warned Páez of a Negro uprising in the city.
      In 1825 Santander cosponsored the Columbian Bible Society started by an English missionary, and he promoted liberal education that included the utilitarianism of Jeremy Bentham. The United States recognized Colombia in 1822, but England waited until 1825. Colombia made treaties with Chile, Peru, Mexico, the United Provinces of Central America, and Buenos Aires, and on December 7 they invited those countries to send envoys to Panama to discuss mutual support. Delegates met in the second half of 1825, but the Congress did not begin until 22 June 1826.

Chilean Revolution 1817-30

      Director Pueyrredon appointed Argentine General José de San Martín commander and captain-general of the Army of the Andes and sent him on an expedition into Chile. They left Mendoza on 9 January 1817 with 5,200 men, 10,600 mules, 1,600 horses, 700 cattle, and specially dried food. San Martín led them across the Andes. They suffered lack of oxygen and cold, but less than a hundred men died. San Martín sent out contingents that secured Coquimbo and Talca. On February 12 his main army defeated the royalists at Chacabuco in Chile, killing about 500 Spaniards and capturing 600 while only twelve of his men were killed in the battle, though many of the 120 wounded died later. Captain-General Marco del Ponte fled but was captured. The Council of Santiago wanted San Martín to govern Chile; but he said he came to liberate, not to rule, and he proclaimed Bernardo O’Higgins supreme director. He decreed a tax on rural property and incomes of public employees, but it is not known how much they collected.
      On 12 February 1818 the patriots at Talca declared the independence of Chile. The royalists managed to hold the southern naval base at Talcahuano. On March 18 Osorio’s forces surprised the patriots at Cancha Rayada, and most of them fled. However, they gathered at San Fernando and defeated Osorio at Maipu on April 5, killing 2,000 and capturing 2,200 men while suffering about 1,000 casualties. They also took 4,000 muskets, 1,200 blunderbusses, 12 cannons, and the Spanish supplies. The city of Santiago gave San Martín 10,000 pesos to thank him, and he donated it to a hospital.

     Bernardo O’Higgins supported San Martín’s campaign in Peru and governed Chile for five years. He decreed the abolition of noble titles and other relics of the feudal system. He improved the streets, provided a market, completed the Maipo canal, supported public health, encouraged education with special attention to the poor, and established a theater in Santiago. O’Higgins tried to win over the Araucanians by improving their rights in Chilean society. Chile’s independence was recognized by Brazil, Mexico, and the United States. O’Higgins implemented a constitution in 1818 with a legislative Senate of five members and a supreme judiciary. Resistance was still strong, and the constituent congress was not achieved. O’Higginshad decreed an end to mayorazgo (entails on property), but the Senate cancelled it in December 1819. He protected the Catholic Church but respected the liberty of conscience of foreign Protestants. In 1820 he appointed Rodriguez Aldea minister of finance, but he alienated private business by using his office for personal gain. He speculated in consumer goods, favored his own interests in Valparaiso by withholding export permits from Concepcion, and gave monopolies to himself and his friends.
      The Senate tried to limit the rule of San Martín in Peru to protect slavery, but O’Higgins refused to transmit their instructions. After that the Senate stopped cooperating with him. In January 1822 O’Higgins took over the duties of the Senate. In May he summoned a convention that drafted a new constitution in October, but the liberal O’Higgins was still the autocratic executive. This increased the resistance that reached Santiago on 28 January 1823 when a Cabildo Abierto met and demanded that O’Higgins resign. He refused but eventually yielded to a special commission that appointed a junta with three members.
      On March 30 representatives from three provinces signed an Act of Union that called for equal representation in a senate and a constituent congress. The Junta selected General Ramon Freire, the intendant of Concepcion, to be Supreme Director on April 4, and he served until 9 July 1826. On 29 December 1823 the Junta promulgated a new constitution devised by Juan Egaña that created elected assemblies in each province and in local communities as small as ten households. The Constitution also abolished slavery and included a moral code of what citizens should and should not do, which made it unpopular. The abolition of slavery was confirmed in the constitutions of 1828 and 1833, though the inquilinaje or tenant farming remained. On 14 July 1824 Freire informed the Senate he was resigning because he could not govern under the 1823 Constitution. The Senate agreed to reform it, and on July 19 people demonstrated against the Constitution in the streets of Santiago. The Senate gave Freire more power, and some sections of the Constitution were suspended. A new Congress was elected and met on November 22. They declared the Constitution null and void on December 29. Egaña blamed the downfall of his Constitution on the liberals.
      The province of Concepcion withdrew their deputies and established their own assembly on 20 April 1825, and Coquimbo did so on May 22. On June 15 Freire met with prominent citizens in Santiago in a public meeting and agreed to govern with the counsel of a new junta. He tried to gain reconciliation with provinces, and in July he ordered the convocation of another national Congress. However, only Santiago elected deputies. The Congress met in September but could not act nationally. On October 7 the Congress suspended Director Freire, and he used force to dissolve the Congress. In November he set up a Directorial Council to govern Chile while he traveled in the south. The Council was headed by the federalist José Miguel Infante.
      After failed campaigns in 1820 and 1824 independent Chile liberated the forested island of Chiloe from the Spaniards in 1826 and made it part of the Republic. In July 1826 the Congress called for the election of a president to replace the Supreme Director. Freire became President of Chile on 25 January 1827, but he resigned and was succeeded on May 8 by the liberal Vice President Francisco Antonio Pinto. He adopted a liberal constitution in 1828, but Congress finally accepted his resignation on 16 July 1829. In the presidential election two conservatives split much of the vote, but the liberal Congress chose Francisco Ramón de Vicuña who acted as President for most of the time until December 7. In September the army in Concepcion had backed a coalition of Conservatives that included traditionalists who supported the clergy, followers of the exiled O’Higgins, and a group of investors in a failed tobacco monopoly. On 6 April 1830 the trader Diego Portales gained two of the three cabinet portfolios. Then on the 17th Conservatives led by General José Joaquín Prieto defeated the Liberals and Freire in a battle near Talco by the Lircay River.

Bolívar & Northern Conflicts 1826-30

      The last Spanish garrison in South America surrendered El Callao in January 1826. Bolívar delegated his authority in Bolivia to Sucre. Bolívar was back in Lima by February, and a conspiracy against him was discovered and crushed. As Dictator he settled a conflict between the deputies and the Supreme Court of Peru in favor of the latter who took his side. When his military power was resented, Bolívar threatened to resign. Fear that this would throw Peru back into anarchy caused 42 deputies to petition for an adjournment of Parliament. In May the National Assembly of Bolivia asked Bolívar for a constitution. He proposed a government with four branches that added the elective to the legislative, executive, and judicial. One out of every ten citizens would be chosen as electors, who would vote for the other offices. The three-part legislature was made up of tribunes with four-year terms, senators elected for eight years, and censors serving for life. The president was elected for life and was to choose his vice president who would succeed him. Slavery and the entailment of property were abolished in order to break up the large estates. This Bolivian Constitution was adopted in July, and Sucre was elected president for life. Also in July a conspiracy to assassinate Bolívar and expel the Colombians was discovered in Peru. Several officers were imprisoned and exiled, and one man was executed. The government of Peru expelled all the Chileans and Argentineans, making Bolívar more unpopular.
      In December 1824 Bolívar, as head of the government of Peru, had sent official invitations to the governments of Colombia, Mexico, Buenos Aires, Chile, and Guatemala to meet in Panama. The deputies from Peru arrived in June 1825, and the Colombians came six months later; but those from Guatemala did not get there until March 1826, and the conference began in June after the delegates from Mexico arrived. By 15 July the conference was over. The delegate sent by the United States had died on the way, and his replacement arrived too late. The four nations signed a treaty of confederation with a convention for common defense, and they promised to meet in alternate years in time of peace and annually during war. The next meeting was to be in the Mexican city of Tacubaya. Bolívar did not like the military agreement nor the shift to Mexico, and he opposed ratification by Peru and Colombia.
      Bolívar began to push for a Federation of the Andes which would include three states from Colombia and three states from Peru and Bolivia. Bolívar wanted Peru to adopt a Bolivian constitution, and they did so by a plebiscite in August 1826. He was also elected president for life, and after declining he was persuaded by the ladies of Lima to accept. Now he hoped that a Bolivian constitution would be accepted in Colombia, Argentina, and Chile.
      The Republic of Colombia had adopted free trade, and imported French and English products caused many local bankruptcies. In 1826 credit collapsed in the region that later scholars called “Gran Colombia.” Roads and transportation were so bad that coastal regions could buy North American flour cheaper than Colombian flour. General taxes on population replaced customs duties and caused financial stagnation. People thought of Venezuela and Caracas as a barracks for soldiers, Colombia and Bogotá as a university for lawyers, and Ecuador and Quito as a monastery for priests. A major conflict developed between General Páez of Venezuela and Vice President Santander in Colombia.
      In January 1826 Páez ordered troops to round up men in the streets, and General Juan Escalona sent a report to Bogotá accusing Páez of brutality. The Colombian Congress suspended Páez and replaced him with Escalona. Agitators persuaded Páez to disobey these orders from Santander, and he wrote to Bolívar to come quickly to prevent a civil war. Valencia and the provinces of Caracas, Carabobo, and Apure supported Páez. Santander also wrote to Bolívar that he was desperately needed.
      At first Bolívar sent his aide Daniel Florencio O’Leary to Bogotá and Caracas. In September 1826 Bolívar left most of his Colombian army in Bolivia and Peru, where they were increasingly unpopular, and went north. On August 11 the tax on native Americans was revived in Peru. In Quito he heard complaints about taxation and from those in the army. He reached Bogotá in November, and he took over unlimited executive power under the constitutional provision during internal rebellion. Bolívar explained his Federation of the Andes and used his diplomatic skill with both Santander and Páez, who called an assembly to write a constitution for Venezuela. However, Puerto Cabello under Bolívar’s relative Briceño Mendez remained loyal to Colombia even when besieged by Páez. Bolívar proclaimed an amnesty for the Venezuelan rebels on 1 January 1827 and told Páez he could remain supreme leader of Venezuela if he recognized Bolívar’s authority as President and Liberator and promised to obey his orders. Páez accepted and abandoned the national assembly. They entered Caracas in triumph.
      Bolívar criticized Santander for greed and dishonesty, and the Vice President reluctantly promised to institute reforms. Liberal newspapers supported Santander and condemned the Federation of the Andes with its lifetime presidency. Santander advocated New Granada becoming independent of Venezuela. Col. José Bustamente ordered Venezuelan officers in Lima arrested, and the division returned to Colombia. Bolívar’s mistress Manuela Saenz in a colonel’s uniform had tried to rouse the Bolívarian troops, but she was arrested and put in a convent. She and the Venezuelan officers were shipped to Guayaquil. Peru abrogated its Bolivian constitution but elected the Bolivian Andres Santa Cruz president. The Peruvians even moved toward annexing Guayaquil and Ecuador. Santander celebrated Bustamente’s mutiny by having bells rung. Bolívar offered to resign the presidency of Colombia in February 1827, and Santander and his party demanded that he do so; the next month Bolívar renounced his friendship with Santander. The treasury was empty; credit was exhausted; and soldiers and officials were suffering starvation. Bustamente invaded Guayaquil, and the Peruvian general La Mar was put in charge. General Juan José Flores persuaded officers that Bustamente was a traitor and had him arrested. Santa Cruz urged elections, and on June 4 a Constitutional Congress convened with 83 deputies. On August 22 they elected José de la Mar over Santa Cruz 58-27, and the constitution was completed in 1828. In late September 1827 General Flores marched into Guayaquil with a Colombian army and declared it under Colombian law. De la Mar had headed the government of Guayaquil, but he had gone south to be Peru’s President.
      Bolívar left Caracas for Bogotá. The Bogotá garrison petitioned for maintaining the Colombian Constitution, but Bolívar got the garrisons of Maracaibo and Cartagena to demand a Bolivian constitution. Bolívar told the Parliament in Bogotá that if they reduced the army, he would not accept the presidency. Bolívar took the oath of office, and in his speech he called for a National Assembly to consider a new constitution. The Congress of Peru voted for the Colombian army that had liberated their country at Ayacucho one million pesos from the five million that Sucre borrowed from England, and according to Tomás de Heres the soldiers received one and a half million.
      Captain Valentin Matos attempted to assassinate Sucre in Bolivia, but Sucre commuted his death sentence to exile and even gave him 200 pesos of his own money. Simón Rodriguez caused so much resentment that Sucre dismissed him. The Peruvian mestizo Agustín Gamarra who was Cuzco’s Prefect, hated Bolívar for having had an affair with his wife, and he instigated a rebellion in December 1827. A battalion at La Paz mutinied and got 40,000 pesos from the Prefect, but they were exterminated by a larger force on their way to Lima. Sucre suppressed the insurgents; but on 18 April 1828 two Peruvian sergeants led the Chuquisaca garrison in Bolivia cheering Gamarra in a mutiny that with muskets wounded Sucre in the arm as he rode by their barracks. On May 17 the Peruvian Congress declared war, and their forces crossed the border and compelled the state of Bolivia to expel all Colombians.
      Bolívar authorized Montilla to take command of Cartagena in an emergency, and on 5 March 1828 he did so. Admiral José Padilla, who was a zambo (African-Indian) and supported Santander, went to Mompox. O’Leary advised Padilla to write to Bolívar who wanted to appoint him commandant at Pasto; but Padilla retuned to Cartagena, where Montilla had him arrested and sent to Bogotá for trial. The district of Cartagena included the city of Ocaña where a convention would begin in April to revise Colombia’s constitution. After his aide William Fergusson disrupted the satirical paper El Zurriago, the next day the paper published the headline “El incombustible.” Bolívar took power in the region except in Ocaña. In the Colombian election for the convention Bolívar prohibited officers and himself from campaigning. Santander did participate and won nearly a majority of the delegates. Meanwhile gangs armed by Spaniards from Puerto Rico were ravaging the plains around Caracas. Commander Páez responded by having insurgent leaders shot while pardoning their followers, but the uprisings spread to the Orinoco, Barinas, Coro, Guayana, and Cumana. Again Bolívar invoked his emergency powers under Article 128 of the Constitution, and he decreed that special courts could try traitors. He appointed Soublette and Urdaneta to support him.
      Bolívar sent a written message that was read at the opening of the National Assembly at Ocaña in which he asked for a strong and efficient government that could protect freedom. Santander got Dr. Peña expelled because of his unresolved embezzlement charge. A motion to invite Bolívar to the Convention was defeated. Bolívar sent his aide O’Leary to represent him and advised him to seek a Bolivian constitution without any compromises. Bolívar’s supporters withdrew from the Convention in early June, and three days later they published the Manifesto to the Colombian People. The rump Convention no longer had a quorum, but they elected Santander their leader and made secret plans. On June 13 the Governor of Cundinamarca and its Council met with people in the plaza of Bogotá to disavow the Convention and give power to Bolívar. Eleven days later Bolívar was welcomed back to Bogotá with cheers and assumed his office in the presence of the Governor, his officials, and the Supreme Court. His dictatorial power was supported by the loyal generals Urdaneta, Mariño, Páez, Soublette, Arismendi, Flores, Cordoba, Montilla, Bermúdez, and Barolomé Salom. Bolívar increased the army to 40,000. His “Organic Decree” of August 27 proclaimed him President-Liberator; the vice presidency was abolished, and a state council was to preserve civil rights. Bolívar was to have power until another National Assembly met in 1830.
      However, many of Bolívar’s leading officers were Europeans and were resented by the people. His living openly with his eccentric mistress Manuela in the presidential palace was also unpopular. A committee of seven plotted to assassinate Bolívar so that Vice President Santander could take over the government. Bolívar wanted Santander out of the country, and on September 5 he appointed him ambassador to the United States. Santander knew of the conspiracy and asked them to wait until he left Colombia, but on September 25 Captain Triana got drunk and exposed the plot. Col. Guerra had his aide Major Carujo call a meeting at the house of Vargas Tejada, and that night three groups formed. One group went to the palace of San Carlos at midnight. Manuela helped Bolívar escape out the window and delayed the assassins. Fergusson approached despite her warning, and Carujo killed him. Bolívar hid under a bridge with a servant until his forces had taken control. Once again Bolívar wanted to resign, but he was persuaded to assert his power. Padilla and fourteen of the conspirators were executed, but Santander had his sentence commuted to exile. Then Bolívar granted a general amnesty. Masonic lodges were closed, and liberal aspects of education were curtailed.
      When the Bolivian Congress convened on 3 August 1828, Sucre resigned and went into retirement at Quito. The Peruvian government sent José de Villa as ambassador to Bogotá, and he repudiated Peru’s treaties and debt to Colombia for aiding their liberation. Colombia then broke diplomatic relations with Lima. President La Mar began mobilizing the army of Peru, but his cabinet persuaded him not to resort to war. La Mar had 4,000 troops on the border of Ecuador, and the Peruvian fleet blockaded Colombia’s Pacific ports in October; but Peru suffered a major blow when Admiral Guise was killed during an attack on Guayaquil in November. The Peruvian navy bombarded and blockaded Guayaquil and occupied it early in 1829. Col. José Maria Obando and Lt. Col. José Hilario López plundered the Cauca Valley, and at Pasto they recruited 300 Indians. Obando wrote to La Mar, offering him an alliance against Bolívar. Prefect Luis José de Orbegoso governed northern Peru and raised an army that President La Mar used to invade southern Colombia.
      Bolívar put Sucre in charge of the southern war and sent General José Maria Cordoba ahead to drive the rebels out of Popayan. The Peruvian army of 8,400 men held Guayaquil and occupied Cuenca. Bolívar promoted Mosquera over the more experienced Cordoba. Disregarding the advice of Sucre and Cordoba not to march to Guayaquil during the rainy season, Bolívar lost many men on this expedition. Sucre had only 6,000 men, but on 27 February 1829 O’Leary led a cavalry charge with 1,500 Colombians against 5,000 Peruvians and prevailed. In this battle of Tarqui 1,500 soldiers were killed, and more than a thousand were wounded, captured, or missing. The next day La Mar signed the Treaty of Giron that guaranteed Colombia’s territorial integrity and awarded them modest reparations. Bolívar, not knowing the results of this battle, negotiated with Obando, promoting him to general and exempting Pastusos from military service for a year. La Mar gave orders not to evacuate Guayaquil; but he was deposed on June 7 by a revolution in Lima led by General Antonio Gutierrez de la Fuente on behalf of Gamarra who sent La Mar to exile in Costa Rica, ratified the Giron Treaty, signed an armistice, and let the Colombian army occupy Guayaquil. Sucre opposed the war with Peru, and Bolívar criticized him for the generous terms he gave them in the treaty. Peru’s Congress made Gamarra president and Fuente vice president.
      In June 1829 a meeting of officials, officers, and clergy in Bogotá agreed to let Bolívar remain president for life and then replace him with a French prince. Venezuelans led by Páez, Soublette, and Peña used this as a reason to revolt against the Colombian union. General Cordoba resigned and joined the liberals, and with 300 volunteers he tried to overthrow Bolívar in his province of Antioquia; but General Urdaneta sent O’Leary with a force that defeated and killed Cordoba on October 17. Bolívar wrote and published his anonymous “View of Spanish America” in Quito and concluded pessimistically,

There is no good faith in America, nor among the nations of America.
Treaties are scraps of paper; constitutions printed matter;
elections, battles; freedom, anarchy; and life, a torment.
Such, Fellow-Americans, is our deplorable situation.
Unless we change it, death is to be preferred.8

      Bolívar blamed the ministers for their monarchist scheme, and his Colombian cabinet resigned. In 1830 Bolívar returned to Bogotá and selected a new cabinet. On January 20 Colombia’s third constitutional convention elected Sucre president and the Bishop of Santa Marta vice president, pleasing Bolívar who wanted the support of the Church and Sucre to succeed him. That day Bolívar spoke to the Congress about the challenge they faced.

Arduous and great is the task of creating a nation
out of a people emerging from oppression
through the path of anarchy and civil war,
a people lacking the necessary preparation with which
to profit from the salutary reforms to which they aspire….
You will learn much from the study of our history,
and much from an investigation of our needs,
but more convincing still will be the cries of the people
against the woes that they suffer
because of the lack of established order and freedom.9

He concluded that they needed a thorough reorganization because “Justice demands codes capable of protecting the rights and the honor of free men.”10
      Bolívar withdrew from power in March 1830 by naming Domingo Caicedo provisional president. Caicedo lifted the press restrictions that Bolívar had imposed in 1828, and liberal newspapers began attacking Bolívar. Regiments on the coast deserted, and the commanding officer put himself under Páez. Bolívar proposed a war on the Venezuelan secessionists, but most believed the war would be unpopular and that Venezuelan independence should be accepted. Nevertheless he organized two divisions under O’Leary and the Swede Friedrich de Adlercreutz. Some in the latter’s division mutinied and went over to Páez who called for a Venezuelan constitutional convention in April.
      Bolívar made his farewell speech in Bogotá on April 27. A week later a new constitution was accepted for Colombia, and the Congress elected Joaquin Mosquera president. Bolívar was exiled and voted an annual pension of 30,000 pesos, but the treasury was empty. He sold jewelry and horses to raise 17,000 pesos. On May 13 General Flores declared Ecuador independent. Three days after the liberal El Democrata reported that Obando may do to Sucre what they failed to do to Bolívar, Sucre was murdered on June 4 while returning from Bogotá to Quito. Manuela Saenz in Bogotá tried to organize a movement to return Bolívar to power with Urdaneta and other veterans. The Venezuelan Congress sent a message to the Congress of Colombia that they would enter into relations with them only if Bolívar left the country. In mid-August Col. Jimenez led rebel forces into Bogotá and demanded that Urdaneta be made minister of war. President Mosquera tried to negotiate, and the force he sent against the rebels was defeated. Mosquera capitulated and agreed to banish 14 Santanderists for an assassination attempt in September 1828. Mosquera and Vice President Caicedo resigned on September 4, and the next day the municipal council of Bogotá had Urdaneta sworn in as head of the government. Some cities proclaimed Bolívar president. He was pleased, but he realized that humans are unfortunate in never being satisfied. A commission was sent to Bolívar in Cartagena. He considered this anarchy and refused to return unless he was popularly elected. Now he condemned insurrections and even deplored their own insurrection against the Spaniards.
      Bolívar’s tuberculosis became worse. In his last written address to the Colombians he hoped that his death would contribute to the ending of factions so that the union of Colombia would be consolidated. On December 11 he wrote to General Justo Briceño urging him to be reconciled with Urdaneta and to support the present government of Colombia. He advised that only by suppressing their personal feelings could their friends “save Colombia from anarchy.” Bolívar died on 17 December 1830 one hour after noon, exactly eleven years to the hour after he had signed the covenant for a united Colombia. In 1829 he had made the following prophecy:

I have achieved no other good than independence.
That was my mission.
The nations I have founded will,
after prolonged and bitter agonies,
go into eclipse, but will later emerge
as states of the one great republic, AMERICA.11


1. Memories of General Daniel Florencio O’Leary quoted in Bolívar by Salvador de Madariaga, p. 65.
2. O’Leary, Vol. 13, p. 589 quoted in Simón Bolívar by Gerhard Masur, p. 237.
3. Selected Writings of Bolívar tr. Lewis Bertrand, Volume 1, p. 105.
4. Ibid., p. 116.
5. Ibid., p. 175.
6. Ibid., p. 178.
7. San Martin: Knight of the Andes by Ricardo Rojas tr. Herschel Brickell & Carlos Videla, p. 251-252.
8. Selected Writings of Bolívar tr. Lewis Bertrand, Volume 2, p. 747.
9. Ibid., p. 749.
10. Ibid., p. 755.
11. Simón Bolívar by Gerhard Masur, p. 698.

Copyright © 2006, 2012, 2021 by Sanderson Beck

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Latin America & Canada 1850-1935

Caribbean & Central America to 1580
West Indies 1580-1850
Central America 1580-1850
Incas, Peru & Chile to 1817
Brazil & Guiana 1500-1850
Southern South America to 1850
New Granada & Bolívar to 1830
Bolivian Nations 1830-50
Mexico to 1768
Mexico & Independence 1768-1831
Mexico & Wars 1832-50
Iroquois & French in America 1534-1744
Canada 1744-1817
Canada under British Rule 1817-50
Summary & Evaluation of Latin America & Canada to 1850

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