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Emperors and Empress of Mexico Century XIX

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    Posted: 06-Oct-2005 at 18:57

Agustn Cosme Damin de Iturbide y Aramburu (1783 - 1824)

Agustin I Emperor of Mexico.


born in Valladolid (now Morelia), 27 September, 1783; died in Padilla, 19 July, 1824. His father came from Navarre shortly before his birth, and settled in New Spain. The son studied at the seminary of his native town till the death of his father in 1798, when he entered the provincial infantry as sub-lieutenant, and in 1805 went with it to garrison Jalapa, and married Ana Maria Huarte, of Valladolid. On his return in 1809 he aided in suppressing a revolutionary movement, and, when in 1810 Hidalgo was planning with Allende the revolution for Mexican independence, he declined to join them, and took the field for the Spanish cause, joining with his force Toreuato Trujillo, to dispute the entry of the insurgent army to the capital at Monte de las Cruces. Iturbide was in the battle of 30 October, and, being promoted captalion of Tula, was sent to the army of the south under Garcia Rio. Impaired health compelled him to go to the capital on leave of absence, and he thus escaped the fate of his commander, who was surprised and killed by the insurgents. After a visit to his native town he was sent to Guanajuato as second in command of Garcia Conde, and took part in the suppression of the rebellion, capturing one of the principal leaders in that province, Albino Garcia. He was then appointed colonel of the regiment of Celaya, with headquarters at Irapuato, organized the defence of San Miguel, Chamacuero, and San Juan de la Vega, and defeated the forces of the revolutionary chiefs, Rafael Rayon, Tovar, and Father Torres. In 1813 he was ordered with Llano to cover Valladolid, which was threatened by the forces of Jose Maria Morelos, and he repulsed the forces of Morelos on 22 December and the following days, and completely routed them at Puruaran on 15 January, 1814. He was repulsed before Coporo by Ignacio Rayon in 1815, and in 1816 was appointed commander-in-chief of Guanajuato and Michoacan; but his cruelties and violent measures became so notorious that several citizens complained. He was indicted, and, although absolved of the gravest charges, was dismissed, as the Spanish government suspected the Mexican officers. He retired to private life, maturing plans of vengeance, especially as he knew, better than any one else, the state of public opinion, and foresaw the final overthrow of the Spaniards On the proclamation of the constitution in the peninsula, 1820, Iturbide obtained from the viceroy, Ruiz de Apodaca, command of the army of the south. On 16 November he left Mexico at the head of his old regiment and a total force of about 2,500 men, and, making his headquarters at Teloloapam, began to win over the officers of his command to his plan. He feigned encounters with the revolutionist leader Guerrero, with whom, in reality, he was in secret communication, and who offered to assist him and submit to his orders. Iturbide reported to the viceroy that he had nearly repressed the revolution, by this means obtaining re-enforcements, and on 22 December marched from Teloloapam, and, after a final interview with Guerrero in Acatempan, 10 January, 1821, surprised and captured at Barrabas a convoy of $525,000 in silver bars, which the merchants of Vera Cruz, believing that the revolution was suppressed, had sent to Acapulco. He now proclaimed in the little town of Iguala, 24 February, 1821, his plan of independence, which is known as the "plan de Iguala," or "plan de las tres garantias," which provided for the protection of religion, the union of Spaniards and Mexicans, and independence under the separate government of Ferdinand VII., or a prince of the reigning dynasty. The viceroy sent a force against him under General Pascual Linan, but public opinion was overwhelmingly in favor of independence, and everywhere the military chiefs pronounced for Iturbide. His forces increased daily, and in the middle of April numbered over 6,000 men. Meanwhile the viceroy had been deposed and succeeded provisionally by General Novella, who hastily erected fortifications for protecting the capital, but he was gradually abandoned by his supporters, and when, in July, the new viceroy, O'Donoju, arrived in Vera Cruz, he resolved to treat with Iturbide. They had an interview at Cordova, where, on 24 August, they concluded a treaty, by which the viceroy recognized the independence of Mexico under the reign of Ferdinand VII., or one of the princes, and in case of their refusal the Mexicans were to choose an emperor for themselves. After being triumphantly received at Puebla, Iturbide entered the capital, 27 September, 1821, at the head of an army of 16,000 men. A junta was installed with O'Donoju as a member, and the next day the declaration of independence was signed and proclaimed. By decree of the junta of 11 October a regency of five members, instead of the original three, was formed, with Iturbide as president, and he was at the same time appointed commander-in-chief, with the title of "serene highness," and an annual salary of $120,000. The Spanish residents that desired to leave the country were permitted to do so without molestation, and this and other liberal measures of the new government contributed to establish peace. The few remaining Spanish garrisons, with the exception of Vera Cruz, became disheartened and surrendered, and the provinces of Yucatan and Chiapas and the Guatemala canton of Soconusco declared their independence, but were afterward united with the Mexican empire Soon dissensions broke out in the junta, under whose interference Iturbide was chafing, the unpaid troops were discontented, and public opinion was divided between monarchical and republican ideas. Hoping for immediate relief, Iturbide hastened the convocation of the 1st congress, which met, 24 February, 1822, but it obstinately refused to grant him money for the troops. Thus driven to extremes, with 16,000 men at his disposal, and aided by the public commotion that was caused by the arrival of the news that the treaty of Cordova had been declared void in Spain, he allowed his partisans to proclaim him emperor on the night of 18 May. This movement was generally sustained by the troops, and, notwithstanding its resistance, congress finally sanctioned his election on 21 May, and received his oath of office, and on 21 July he was solemnly crowned amid pompous ceremonies in the cathedral under the name of Agustin I. Soon opposition began to appear everywhere, and when, on 26 August, he imprisoned fifteen deputies to congress, who were suspected of participation in a conspiracy that had been organized in Valladolid, he fell into disagreement with that body, and on 31 October dissolved it arbitrarily. The "junta instituyente," which succeeded the congress on 2 November, was unable to establish order, and defection became general among the army officers. Santa Anna, who had been ordered to Mexico, proclaimed the republic in Vera Cruz on 2 December, Guerrero went to the south to raise an insurrection, and General Echavarri, who had been ordered against Santa Anna, joined him, signing on 1 February, 1823, the "plan de Casa Mata." Driven to despair, Iturbide hastily reassembled the congress that had been dissolved by him four months before, and on 7 March presented his abdication, which was ignored by that body. It declared his election void from the beginning, and decreed that he should immediately leave the country and reside in Italy with a pension of $25,000 yearly. He was meanwhile under the custody of General Bravo, and on 11 May he sailed in the English ship "Rawlins" for Leghorn, where he arrived on 2 August But the grand-duke did not desire to see him reside there, and he went thence to London in the beginning of 1824 His Mexican partisans, meanwhile, represented that the country desired his return, and, impelled by a wish to recover his crown, he sailed on 4 May, accompanied by his wife, his nephew, the Polish colonel Benseki, and three priests, for Mexico, and, after looking vainly for some of his partisans in the Bay of San Bernardo, anchored on 14 July in the small port of Soto la Marina, unaware that the government, meanwhile, had declared him a traitor and an outlaw should he set foot again on Mexican territory. After Benseki had obtained permission from the military commander, Felipe de la Garza, for his "party of colonists" to land, Iturbide went on shore, but was immediately recognized, notwithstanding his disguise, and arrested. Garza conducted him to the prison of the town, and advised him to prepare to die. He sent for his chaplain, but the commander, meanwhile, resolved to present him to the provincial congress of Tamaulipas, which was then in session in the neighboring town of Padilla. He arrived there on 19 July, that body condemned him to immediate execution, and he was shot on the evening of the same day in the square of Padilla, after assuring the multitude that he was not a traitor to his country, and exhorting them to obey the constitutional government, he was buried in the small cemetery there, but under the administration of General Bustamante in 1838 congress ordered his remains to be transported to the city of Mexico, and on 25 September of that year, after solemn ceremonies, they were placed in the chapel of San Pelipe de Jesus, in the cathedral, in a marble sarcophagus. After his execution congress decreed that his family should reside in Colombia, giving them a yearly pension of 88,000; but, there being no ship for that country, his wife was permitted to go to the United States. She lived for many years in Philadelphia, and then went to Bayonne, France.--The emperor's elder son, Angel, died in the city of Mexico, 18 July, 1872, leaving a son, Agustin, born in Washington, D. C., in 1863, who was adopted by Maximilian as heir to the throne, and after the death of his father returned to the United States.--The emperor's younger son died in Paris, France, in May, 1873.


source:
http://www.famousamericans.net/candidoborgesmonteiroitauma/


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  Quote Maju Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07-Oct-2005 at 20:20
I have read the article and I think it's worth to be in the main site. Interesting to say the least. 

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  Quote Jalisco Lancer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Oct-2005 at 14:12

THE ARCHDUKE FERDINAND MAXIMILIAN

The second son of Archduke Franz Karl and the Archduchess Sophie of Austria was born in the palace of Schnbrunn in Vienna on the 6th July, 1832. Ferdinand Max grew up a lively boy full of curiosity, with a romantic and imaginative nature. Although his mother's favourite, he always maintained close and affectionate relations with his elder brother, the future Emperor Francis Joseph. His choice of careers led the archduke into the imperial navy. Ferdinand Max loved the sea and the Adriatic coast, and he decided to build his romantic castle of Miramar just outside the port of Trieste.



THE GOVERNOR-GENERAL

In 1857 Francis Joseph appointed his brother to the post of governor-general in the Austrian held provinces of northern Italy, the Kingdom of Lombardy-Venetia. The Archduke Ferdinand Maximilian took up his residence at Monza outside Milan with his new bride, the Princess Charlotte of Belgium. The Austrians were far from popular in northern Italy, but despite resistance from the military authorities, the vice-regal couple began slowly to win over many Italians. Ferdinand Maximilian's liberalism aroused less enthusiasm in Vienna, however, where he was increasingly seen as being in opposition to his imperial brother's government.

With the approach of war in 1859 against France and the north Italian kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia, Francis Joseph relieved his brother of his office and gave full power to the military. Both the archduke and his wife resented this dismissal.

THE IMPERIO MEXICANO

Ferdinand Max returned to his castle of Miramar, but events across the Atlantic would soon put an end to his political inactivity. An army of intervention consisting of Spanish, English and French troops had landed in Mexico to enforce payment of the huge foreign debts of the Mexican republic. The Spanish and English soon withdrew, but the French troops of Napoleon III remained to establish a conservative, pro-French regime. To achieve this they decided to re-establish a monarchy, and in October,1863, a Mexican delegation offered the crown to Ferdinand Max as a prince of the first European dynasty to have ruled Mexico centuries before.

On the advice of Francis Joseph the support of Napoleon III was secured in writing. The U.S. government protested at what was seen as an infringement of the Monroe Doctrine, but the civil war between the states prevented their taking action.

After an apparently favourable plebiscite in Mexico, the Archduke Ferdinand Maximilian accepted the imperial crown at Miramar on the 10th April,1864. Four days later he and his wife went on board the ship S.M.S. "Novara" to set sail for their new homeland as the Emperor and the Empress of Mexico.





THE EMPERADOR MAXIMILIANO

On their arrival at Vera Cruz on the coast of Mexico, they were horrified to discover that their new realm was still embroiled in civil war. The French had achieved the upper hand, but the liberals and the republicans were still offering bitter resistance under their president, Benito Jurez. If Maximilian was disillusioned and disappointed, his supporters were soon equally disappointed in their new emperor. Far from governing in the interests of the French and the conservatives, Maximilian saw himself as a figure of national integration. The welfare of all his subjects was his first concern. He cherished the vain hope that his liberalism would enable a reconciliation of the republican opposition. He did not understand that they did not want an emperor, no matter how liberal! To Jurez and his followers Maximilian would always remain the "Austraco".

The end of the American Civil War gave new hope to the Mexican republicans. The Emperor Napoleon III came under massive pressure to withdraw his French troops from Mexico. In mid-1866 Charlotte returned to Europe to try to shame Napoleon into honouring his written promises to Maximilian, but Paris was deaf to all her pleas and threats. The desperation of failure plunged the young empress into the mania of a persecution complex. It was a madness that would persist until her death in 1927.

THE HILL OF THE BELLS

On the 13th February, 1867, after the rejection by Jurez of a renewed offer of peace, the Emperor Maximilian left Mexico City with his "national" army for the town of Quertaro some 100 miles to the north. Here the Mexican Empire would make its stand. Unfortunately, the jealousies and rivalries between his generals greatly reduced the effectiveness of Maximilian's forces, and he and his troops were soon besieged in Quertaro by the advancing republican armies. On the 15th May Colonel Lpez betrayed the town into the hands of the republicans. Maximilian and his loyal generals Miramn and Meja were arraigned before a military tribunal and condemned to death.


At dawn on the 19th June, 1867, the three men were taken out to the Cerro de las Campanas (the Hill of the Bells), where they were executed by a firing squad.
His last words were:
"I forgive everyone, and I ask everyone to forgive me. May my blood which is about to be shed, be for the good of the country. Viva Mexico, viva la independencia!"


After difficult negotiations with an unwilling Jurez, who had had to stomach the criticism of even friendly Washington, Maximilian's body was returned to Austria. The same ship, S.M.S. "Novara", which had brought him to Mexico, now carried his embalmed body back to Trieste and to its final resting place in the imperial crypt in Vienna.



The tragedy of Maximilian was that he assumed the crown of Mexico in good faith and full of the best intentions. He was upright and honest, and genuinely wanted to lead Mexico into an age of peace and prosperity. It was his fate to be deceived by the political realities, and then to be prevented by his essentially noble character from cutting his losses to save his own life.

source:
http://www.austrian-mint.com/e/maxhist.html




Edited by Jalisco Lancer
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