Thursday, June 10, 2010

Huandacareo Defenders, 8 de Enero 1918

Group No. 1
Chief defender: Salvador Urrutia
Location: At Old Temple of San Jeronimo...
==================================================== the vault/tomb of the presbytery
1. J. Jesus Figueroa (a) (b)
2. Jose Murrillo Loaiza (a) (c)
3. Isaac Figueroa (a) (b) (c)
........on the roof of the rectory
4. Jose Socorro Diaz Diaz (Subchief) (a) (b) (c)
5. Epifanio Diaz Diaz (clarin) (a) (b) (c)
6. Atenogenes Alvarez (a) (b)
7. Luis Rodriguez (employee of the hacienda) (a) (c)
8. Socorro Rodriguez (a)
==================================================== the choir loft
9. Gilberto Fernandez Ponce (a) (b) (c)
10. Elpidio Figueroa (a) (b) (c)
11. Salvador Carreon Gonzalez (gunsmith) (a) (c)
==================================================== the tower/steeple
12. Salvador Urrutia (a) (b) (c)
13. Antonio Vargas (a) (b)
14. Maximiano Calvillo (a) (b) (c)
15. J. Soledad Gonzalez (a) (b) (c)
16. Enrique Velazquez (a) (c)
17. Alejandro Aguilar (a) (c)
18. Aniceto ("mozo" de la hacienda) (a)
19. Josefat Manriquez (c)
20. J. Trinidad Martinez Raya (Los Diablos) (b) (c)

Group No. 2
Chief defender: Eusebio Alvarez
Location: Two sections joined by corridor of beams...
==================================================== the house of don Antonio Alvarez, "gariton" de la esquina.
21. Eusebio Alvarez (a) (b) (c)
22. Nicolas Manriquez Guido (a) (b) (c)
23. Estanislao Manriquez (a) (b) (c)
24. Zenobio Manriquez (a) (b) (c)
25. Federico Alvarez Toledo (a) (b) (c)
26. Salvador Alvarez Toledo (a) (b) (c)
27. Maximino Perez (a) (c)
28. Benito Diaz Diaz (a)
==================================================== top of store, "La Concordia".
29. Agustin Rangel (wounded) (a) (b) (c)
30. Alberto Murillo Vargas (a) (b) (c)
31. Lorenzo Garcia (wounded) (a) (b) (c)
32. Amador Gonzalez (a) (c)
33. Camilo Gonzalez (a) (b) (c)
34. Anselmo Lopez (c)
35. Blas Silva (c)
36. Francisco Campos (b) (c)

Group No. 3
Chief: Cipriano Gonzalez
Location: Corner of Hidalgo and Morelos...
==================================================== house of Cipriano Gonzalez.
37. Cipriano Gonzalez (a) (b) (c)
38. Amador Diaz (de Capacho, disparo 3 tiros al viento) (c)
39. Mauro Garcia Alvarez (a) (b) (c)
40. Domingo Garcia Alvarez (a) (b)
41. Leopoldo Diaz Diaz (a) (b) (c)
42. Macario Diaz (a)
43. Patricio Diaz Diaz (a) (b)
44. Roman Tinoco (a) (b) (c)
45. Vicente Paramo (a) (c)
46. Felix Reyes (a) (b) (c)
47. Gregorio Fulgencio (c)
48. Jeronimo Montes (c)
49. Serapio Tinoco Guzman (c)
50. Julian Alvarez (b) (c)
51. Emilio Nieto Gonzalez (b) (c)
52. Miguel Paramo (b) (c)
==================================================== his own house.
53. Joaquin Torres (a) (b)

Group No. 4
Chief: Luis Nunez Martinez
Location: South sidewalk of the first block of the second "cuartel" which extended from movie house to the house of Don Esteban Vargas, but one "gariton" at the corner of dona Ignacia Villagomez...
.......all on the terrace (or flat roof) of the houses.
54. Luis Nunez Martinez (a) (b) (c)
55. Sidronio Diaz (c)
56. Luis Garcia Alvarez (a) (b) (c)
57. Ricardo Garcia Alvarez (a) (b) (c)
58. Marcelo Campos Fernandez (a) (b) (c)
59. Pedro Pantoja (a) (b) (c)
60. Antonio Anguiano (a) (c)
61. Agustin Cahue (a)
62. Francisco Martinez (the carpenter) (a) (b) (c)
63. Ramon Gonzalez M. (from nearby La Canada) (a) (b) (c)
64. Andres Velazquez (a) (c)
65. Benjamin Vargas Guzman (a) (b) (c)
66. Valentin Fernandez Villagomez (a) (b) (c)
67. J. Jesus Murillo Aguilar (a) (b) (c)
68. Sacramento Diaz (a) (b)
==================================================== the "gariton" on the corner.
69. Salvador Lucio (a) (b) (c)
70. Rafael Diaz Villagomez (a) (b) (c)
71. Francisco Vargas Villagomez (a) (c)
72. Jose Jesus Toledo (a)
73. J. Encarnacion Cansino (a) (b)
74. J. Telesforo Velazquez (a) (c)
75. Rodrigo Alvarez Diaz (c)
76. Florencio Sarabia (b) (c)

Group No. 5
Chief: Miguel Figueroa Guzman
Location: Understood to be from corner of 2nd block of the 2nd "cuartel" from the house of don Ignacio Diaz, Municipal Headquarters, Mansion and houses of don Rafael Diaz, Juan Flores, Messrs. Huerta Diaz and don Santos Figueroa; the 4th block of the first "cuartel," houses of Messrs. Rangel and the corner of the store owned by Mr. Gilberto Fernandez.
77. Miguel Figueroa Guzman (a) (b) (c)
78. J. Ines Garcia (b) (c)
79. Francisco Huerta Diaz (sub-chief) (a) (b) (c)
80. Fiacro Huerta Diaz (a) (b) (c)
81. J. Sacramento Marinez (a) (b)
82. Vicente Marinez (a) (b)
83. Bernabe Loeza (a) (b)
84. Procopio Loeza R(a)osiles (a)(b) (c)
85. Vicente Cisneros (a) (b)
86. Marciso Mendoza (a) (c)
87. Santos Puente (a) (b)
88. Juan Guzman (a) (c)
89. Eziquio Marinez (a) (b) (c)
90. Basilio Prado (a) (c)
91. Genaro Aguilar (a) (b) (c)
92. Gumersindo Aguilar (a) (b) (c)
==================================================== the second section (the 4th block of the first "cuartel", houses of Messrs. Rangel and the corner of the store owned by Mr. Gilberto Fernandez).
93. Hipolito Rangel (a) (b) (c)
94. Federico Rangel (a) (b)
95. Ponciano Chavez Diaz (a) (b)
96. Jose Villafuerte (a)
97. Mateo Padilla (a) (b)
98. Pedro Mendoza (c)

Group No. 6
Location: Third block of the first "quartel", house of don Jose Maria Villicana and Messrs. Sixtos and the sixth block of the first "quartel" where once stood the "Templo de 'El Hospital'"
99. Miguel Garcia Mendoza (a) (b) (c)
100. Atilano Ambriz Campos (b) (c)
101. Pedro Diaz Diaz (a) (b)
102. Lucio Alvarez Diaz (a) (b) (c)
103. Francisco Lopez Guzman (a) (b)
104. Andres Huerta (a)

Group 7
Location: First block of the first "cuartel", from the house of don Nicolas Nunez Martinez to the house of don Hilario Chavez.
105. Nicolas Nunez Martinez (a) (b) (c)
106. Hilario Chavez Diaz (a) (b) (c)
107. Aristeo Diaz Diaz ("clarin de ordenes") (a) (b) (c)
108. Antonio Alvarez (a) (b)
109. Ramon Fernandez (a)
110. Fedencio Manriquez (a) (b)

Additional Defenders

111. Melesio Alvarez Aguilar (b)
112. Francisco Zavala Guzman (b)
113. Pompeyo Alvarez (b)
114. Vicente Cahue Diaz (b)
115. Epifano Cahue (b)
116. Atanasio Campos Chavez (b)
117. Nicolas Cisneros (b)
118. Salvador Diaz Manriquez (b)
119. Florentino Fernandez V. (b)
120. Juan Gonzalez (b)
121. Bruno Loeza (b)
122. Genovevo Loeza (b)
123. Epifanio Loeza Manriquez (b)
124. Silverio Lopez (b)
125. Afa Manriquez (b)
126. Francisco Martinez M. (b)
127. Emilio Murillo (b)
128. Nicolas Villicana (b)
129. Jose Pizano (b)
130. Benito Reyes (b)
131. Sabino Reyes Gonzales (b)
132. Martin Rivera (b)
133. Aristeo Tena (b)
134. Domingo Tena (b)
135. Conrado Vargas (b)
140. Mauro Velazquez Montes (d)

(a) Name appears on a list compiled by a defender, J. Socorro Diaz Diaz.
(b) Name found engraved on memorial plaques "del Hemiciclo Defensores de Huandacareo" located in front of the "Presidencia Municipal."
(c) Name appears on a list developed between 1945 and 1946 by eight defenders--Miguel Figueroa Guzman, Francisco Huerta Diaz, Eusebio Alvarez, Salvador Alvarez Toledo, Cipriano Gonzalez, Hilario Chavez Diaz, Nicolas Nunez Martinez, Benjamin Vargas Guzman.
(d) Listed by virtue of official documents.
Re: #140 -- Webmaster, 6/12/2010, at below-cited website advised Mauro Velazquez Montes, #140, defended Huandacareo from the tower/steeple, Templo de San Jeronimo, where Salvador Urrutia had positioned himself.

LA OPINION, 10 de Enero de 1918

"LA OPINION" (daily afternoon edition)
published in Morelia, Michoacan, Mexico
Thursday, January 10, 1918

Yesterday, the bandit--Ines CHAVEZ Garcia--suffered tremendous defeat.
Neighbors of the town of Huandacareo defended themselves heroically.
The brave Gen. Jose L. FLORES, with Cavalry under his control attacked the rearguard of the enemy with vigor.

As we offered our readers yesterday, today we release, with permission, the following offical part of the defeat inflicted upon the bandits led by the infamous CHAVEZ Garcia, who was whipped for the second time by the legal forces under the command of General ESTRADA.

Despite the perverse versions of the enemies of the revolution and hence constitutionalism, we therefore firmly believe that the current head of military operations in the state will bring about, promptly, the establishment of that peace we all desire.

This victory won by the loyal, has filled us with joy and so we send to the military authorities and the heroic defenders of Huandacareo our warmest congratulations.

Here's the official part:
Morelia, Mich.,
January 9, 1918
General J. Agustin CASTRO, Assistant Secretary of War and Navy
Mexico DF
No. 103

We communicate to you the latest operations; in due time I have paid back in part the defeat you suffered by the siege of Santa Ana [Maya] on January 1st of 1918.

On January 3, I had to move forcefully to this town because 300 bandoleros from Altamirano had interrupted communication with Acambaro. Subsequently, we mobilized the 73rd Batallion for further development of operations against CHAVEZ Garcia who occupied--with 1,200 men--Santa Ana Maya and Cuitzeo, having received reinforcement from Altamirano and Guanajuato.

Yesterday, the 8th (of January), I received news that bandoleros were moving against Huandacareo with the intent of attacking it.

This meant that Gen. Jose L. FLORES with the 71st Regiment of his Brigade, 8th Regiment of Lt. Col. Magana URIEL and the 216th of Lt. Col. Anacleto LOPEZ, who were under his direct orders, were mobilized in full force to proceed from Purandiro to Huandacareo; at the same time the 73rd Batallion under Col. SERRATO was mobilized to proceed from this town with the same objective. For their part, the enemy--at 4:00p.m.--launched a vigorous attack against Huandacareo where 80 brave citizens under Mr. Nicolas NUNEZ, made a bold resistance, holding at bay the bandits until 7:00p.m., at which time, Gen. FLORES, proceeding from Purandiro and following the correct device regiments under his command, attacked, vigorously, the rearguard of the enemy, putting them, in thirty minutes, in complete disarray despite the rugged terrain and darkness of night.

The enemy left 34 dead, 245 horses--most with saddle--40 guns in good condition, 10 musical instruments and 150 bags of baggage, numerous traces of blood. The part only refers to what is recorded.

For our part, (we) had one dead and one injured from the 8th Regiment, one dead from the 216th Regiment, and three injured of the brave civilian defenders of Huandacareo.

I think it just to note the expertise of Gen. FLORES; the tenacity of our cavalry and the brave conduct of the citizens of Huandacareo. As you see, it seems that the weapons confirm our optimism in the ultimate success of the campaign in Michoacan.

Respectfully, Gen. Mgr. of Operations, E. ESTRADA.
The original of this newspaper is in the archives of Mr. Gilberto FERNANDEZ Ponce and his family has done me the favor of lending it to me to make this reproduction which I would send to all households in Huandacareo for those who wish to keep it as a souvenir depicting the historical events of those fateful days when our beloved town was covered in glory, thanks to the efforts, the courage and heroism of its brave defenders, to whom we owe all respect and gratitude.
Huandacareo, Mich.
9 de Enero de 1965
Benjamin NUNEZ Ch.
Source: Website:

Friday, June 4, 2010

Attack on Huandacareo January 8, 1918

[According to the memoirs of Jose Socorro Diaz Diaz, from the website: . It is not a word by word translation because some of the language is objectionable and some of the meanings can only be understood in Spanish.]

Defender Group (Reten) 1: The Steeple, site of the most intense attack.

The rebels came up to the orchard belonging to my father, don Salvador Diaz and we took down three, two in the orchard and one at the corner of the house of Sr. Ezequiel Alvarez--(that one) killed by Epifanio Diaz. The bandidos advanced firing and threatening that they would soon have the pleasure of hanging us from the trees, but when they came within our predetermined range, they were stopped by our fire which seemingly found its mark or passed by them so close it scared them enough to seek cover among the trees in the orchard. Enraged, they continued firing aimlessly since they did not know where the shots were coming from that grazed them and because of the distance, seemed to be very effective.

They then attempted to take the presbytery, where senores Figueroa and Jose Murillo received them with shots. As they approached closer, three bombs were thrown at them. This made them retreat again to the orchard. The first bomb the defenders threw at them did not work and the bandidos ridiculed the townspeople saying: "Better to defend yourselves by forting..." But upon throwing the other two bombs, they netted two wounded which were taken away to hide in the orchard.

Fidel Gonzalez had asked Chavez Garcia to permit him to take the tower/steeple with his men and 100 others. But since it was 5:30 p.m. and the battle in that direction had not ceased, he (Chavez Garcia) ordered the "general" Macario Silva to--with 200 men--reinforce the attack on the steeple whichever way he could, even starting a fire. We became aware of Silva's arrival because we heard him (Silva) shouting at Gonzalez: "What happened Coronel (Colonel), didn't you say that you'd take the steeple in 15 minutes?" To which Fidel Gonzalez answered: "General, these sons of ... are tough: they shoot to kill and we don't even know where the bullets are coming from." Silva then said: "Well, let's go get them... We're going in guys!"

Firing intensely for 15 minutes, they were only able to advance as far as the border separating the orchard to the corral (curate's corral). Upon their attacking we'd return fire causing three wounded--since we were only 30 meters away and they could not see us because we were firing from between the "tejas del techo" (roof tiles). Silva retreated for cover with his men among the trees and from there shouted at Salvador Urrutia: "'Churruco', give up and we'll allow you to live, remember that we were 'companeros' (comrades) in arms under Gen. Prieto, Northern Division." To which Urrutia answered him: "I know of no friend of mine to be so vile to place himself under the orders of the biggest bandido in the nation and from the moment you joined him, you son of a ..., there's no difference in the two. You are both 'una chuzma de bandidos' and 'cuatro gatos' we're scaring you." Silva again insisted saying: "We've already taken the town." Then Urrutia shouted to the "Jefe" (Chief) of the defense: "Listen, don Nico, this son of a ... says you have given up!" To which don Nicolas Nunez answered, shouting: "Tell that low-life that we are still as we were when they began and 'nos han hecho los puros mandados.' (We have the upperhand.)" Then Urrutia shouted at Silva: "You heard, '...,' that you have failed. Attack, you sons of ... and don't pretend to scare us with your prattle!"

Again, a large number of shots rang with intensity on my side and I was obligated to send Epifanio, my brother, to tell Urrutia to send more men to reinforce us since it was growing dark and from the steeple (or tower) it was difficult to spot the enemy. He (Urrutia) then sent me five men. Seeing that the attack was lingering, Urrutia shouted at Silva: "What happened, Silva, 'bandido.' Show yourself to fight like a man and not just steal and rape women! You only attack when you far outnumber one to 100 like you did at Santa Ana Maya!" They (the enemy) did not attack but settled into a pattern of sporadic firing where they thought we might be located. One of these shots ricocheted the bell and caused a gash on Urrutia's head. Gilberto Fernandez and I took care of it.

We were doing this, when Antonio Vargas came down from the tower (steeple) and said: "These ... no longer attack; you tell me if we ring the bell to stir them up." Urrutia agreed, but this caused great alarm among the defenders who thought the rebels had taken the steeple. And the bandidos thought likewise because they redoubled their attack, shouting that they had triumphed. Don Nicolas asked: "What's happening at the tower?" Urrutia answered: "It's that these sons of ... no longer attack and we're falling asleep." This remark caused rage among the attackers but the townspeople remained focused.

Defender Group (Reten) 2:

The enemy succeeded in routing "companeros" (fellow defenders) who were on the terrace (or flat roof) of the store "La Concordia" causing them to withdraw to the house of don Antonio Alvarez, crossing over a bridge of laid out beams from one block to another. Having been wounded, Lorenzo Garcia could not be passed across and was left between the "tapanco" (attic) and the roof of the house, from where, after the attack was over, we took him down with "mantas" (blankets). In order to make our retreat from one block to another and believing that the bandits were already on the roof of "La Concordia" (store), they had to throw down the beams that formed the bridge; in this activity, don Agustin Rangel, Chief of the Section, was wounded in the right eye, falling inert. the "companeros" (fellow defenders) thought him to be dead, but fortunately, he lost only that one eye. Besides him, Nicolas Manriques, Eusebio and Federico Alvarez fought with valor in this group (Reten 2). Well, the ones that were at the "gariton" (cuartel) did not have but one opportunity to fire (their weapon), when they (the bandidos) came across the corner of the store (belonging to) Santiago Manriquez, causing them (the bandidos) two wounded.

Defender Group (Reten) 3:

The enemy, punching walls, was able to advance to the house of don Joaquin Torres (close to that of don Cipriano Gonzalez), but upon opening up a barrage (of rounds) in order to continue advancing, don Joaquin Torres, himself, fired his weapon (escopeta) (and) succeeded in killing the one attempting to enter there, saying: "Take that you son of a ...; bring on the rest!" This obliged (the bandidos) to retreat to the house of the Manriques--Fidencio and Josefat--where they kept on shooting at the group of defenders. About 8 o'clock at night, an individual who said he was Chavez Garcia, succeeded in approaching the house of Isaac Figueroa--across the corner where the general "cuartel" was located and in front of the Defender Group (Reten) No. 3 at the house of don Cipriano Gonzales--and, he (Chavez Garcia) asked to speak with the Chief of the Defense. Upon communicating by shouts, he sought that the town should give up, that they had no possible defense, that the tower/steeple (St. Jeronimo) had fallen to them and because of that he had ordered "Alto el Fuego" (cease firing) to be played. which was true, since the "clarin" could be heard playing everywhere (in all directions). Don Nicolas answered that we would never surrender, that it was impossible to trust the word of a bandit of his "calana" (ilk). And as for the taking of the tower/steeple, that was a lie, since they (the defenders) were communicating with each other through shouts from one group ("reten") to another. And he (don Nicolas) went on to shout: "Hear, don Salvador (Urrutia), what this bandit Chavez Garcia says, that they have taken the tower!" Urrutia answered him: "Tell him to go tell it to the author of his days, that they have fallen short; that they've tried to scare us with (nothing more than) shouts and lies."

Since, in effect, all firing had ceased, all the defenders heard the words of Urrutia, causing great enthusiasm and the ire of the brutes "troglodita," who continued to be insulted by those in (Defender) Group No. 3; and causing them ("troglodita") to retreat, swearing that come sunrise they would burn the whole town.

At Defender Group 4:

They did not attack "con brio," but as they had done throughout the town, advanced by punching through walls and taking cover behind fences until they got to the property situated behind that which in previous times had been the cinema house Urrutia and from a huge "capulin" plant, they were opening fire, approaching even to the house of don Fernando Nunez; but one or two close shots made by the defenders, contained them. Another faction of rebels attacked the house of don Socorro Murillo where defenders Marcelo Campos, Ramon Gonzalez, and Jesus Murillo Aguilar were stationed and who also contained them (approaching bandidos). True story: Marcelo Campos, who was the chief there, said that Murillo Aguilar's mother made him (Aguilar) come down from the roof (flat roof or terrace) because he was so tall he made himself a target. The defenders who were at the "gariton" (cuartel), who had opportunity to discharge their weapons--because they (the bandits) were not able to advance to attack through the streets--could fire only when the bandits crossed the street from the first block to the second.

At Defender Group 5, (led by) don Miguel Figueroa:

The defenders had to fight from the beginning of the attack, almost without interruption, up to 8 o'clock at night, when the bandidos began to play "Alto el Fuego." And they attacked with "brio" (vigor) because they thought there were no defenders, until they were received with close shots and handmade bombs that caused casualties. Even though the bandidos insulted the defenders, they (the defenders) did not respond when the bandidos advanced, they (the defenders) drove them back; which caused the bandidos to become enraged and return again to attack.

The leader of the group (of defenders) had ordered that no one shout back in answer to the insults. From that day on, we named that group the "silent tombs" because don Jose Villafuerte said that he (Reten No. 5 leader: Miguel Figueroa Guzman) had made them to keep the silence of the grave.

Defender Group 6:

At the section south of this "reten" (group of defenders), at the house of Messrs. Rangel, the bandits attacked from the west and advanced up to the "rastro" (market, flea market), from where they were firing and succeeded in wounding don Hipolito Rangel who was shooting from an "arpillera" (burlap sack). But with shots taken by the defenders -- who were on the azotea (flat roof or upper-level terrace) protected by the "bardas" (barriers) at the aforementioned temple (Templo de "El Hospital") -- they were driven back. Those shots (driving back the bandidos) were fired by Miguel Gazca, Pedro Diaz Diaz, and Lucio Alvarez of Defender Group No. 6.

At "Reten" (Defender Group) No. 7, the general headquarters of the defense:

There was nothing new, except for words exchanged between the Chief of the Defense and Chavez Garcia; since the defenders did not have opportunity to fire from the "gariton" (cuartel) established at the corner of Hidalgo and Morelos (streets).

Anticipating the intensity of the attack that the Chavistas would launch the following day, the defenders of the tower/steeple, Elpidio Figueroa, Maximiliano Calvillo and Soledad Gonzalez were ordered to reinforce the three that were at the tomb/vault of the presbytery and the others -- except for four who would stay inside the tower/steeple -- were sent to the lower floor to reinforce the trenches in front of the "zaguan" (entry porch), the windows of the curate's house, and the front of the corral.

While this is going on, about 9 o'clock at night, and with one or two shots fired by the rebels, suddenly there was heard a great deal of shooting to the west of the town. We immediately climbed up the tower to find out what was going on. We saw a line of fire "nutridisimo" (large amount) that took up almost all the west and was advancing toward the center. We thought it was a strategy of the Chavistas to "amedrentarnos," burning short-fused firecrackers, but the rapidity of bullets passing over the tower convinced us that it was a formal attack.

General Enrique Estrada, Chief of the Operations of the State (of Michoacan), to whom we had sent word regarding the rebels since the 7th (of January), had ordered Gen. Flores to mobilize to help us. Gen. Flores arrived at the "Rancho de Llano Grande" about 5 o'clock in the afternoon, and upon learning of the number of people that Chavez had brought with him, he (Gen. Flores) waited until 8 o'clock at night to leave the ranch and surprise the bandido (Chavez) by attacking his rearguard causing the Chavistas to be disbanded; since what they least expected was an attack by the Constitutionalist forces under (Gen.) Flores and Lt. Col. Anacleto Lopez and Lt. Col. Magana Uribe, head of the 216th Regiment and 8th Regiment respectively.


Monday, May 31, 2010

Huandacareo, Michoacan, Mexico

My grandfather, Mauro Velazquez Montes, has just been listed among the defenders of the town of Huandacareo. He is listed as #140 and there is even a picture of him! His participation in the defense of Huandacareo has been verified by diplomas awarded by the town's municipal presidents (our equivalent of a mayor) the 8th of January, 1943 and the 8th of January, 1964. I recently was given a copy of these documents as I have always been interested in my family's history. On May 12th, I decided to contact the webmaster at . Since that time until late Sunday night 5-30-2010 I have been in almost daily communication with the webmaster. Now I am happy to report that the website has listed my grandpa's name!

Not many people are aware that it was 100 years ago that the violent raids (1910-1919) began which would change the ruling powers of Mexico. The history of Huandacareo and the battle of 8th of January 1918, is the story of townspeople who defended themselves against invading maruaders. It was a time of complete lawlessness and violence. Nothing was sacred to the bandidos--children, virgins, church property, private property--and the violent took what they wanted by force, destroying along the way, documents, deeds, and male members of prominent families. Such a time I hope our country never sees. With total breakdown of government, the townspeople of Huandacareo organized their own defense. I document this story here, because there are many people who fled to the United States during those years. In the case of our particular family, our grandfathers focused our attention on the future available to us in the United States and little was said about those turbulent times in Mexico. We have become American citizens and are truly blessed. But I also recognize that my roots are in Mexico, the Mexico that my grandparents loved and fought for. It is true that initially the Presidents of Mexico were determined by assassination, but it is also true that Mexico has prevailed in the power of the electoral ballot. The bandidos established their party, now known as PRI, but in 2000, Vicente Fox of PAN (National Action Party) was elected President.

I dedicate this site to this new Mexico and say: God be with you, Mexico, lindo!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Remembering my Roots

This past week, I spent sending documents to a website in Mexico so that my grandfather's name could be added to a list of the defenders of Huandacareo during the years 1910-1919. Those are the years known as the Mexican Revolution. But my grandpa was not a revolutionary. He was a private citizen of a small secluded farming community that resisted the invasion of violent raiders and pillagers into his town.

After 1919, he left Mexico for the United States to found our family. He and grandma worked hard and with the Lord's blessing and protection, had a full life and a peaceful retirement. He and grandma remained Mexican citizens, and out of deference and respect to them, Spanish was always spoken in their presence.

He lived a quiet life in retirement and I remember him working in his garden every day. He was organized and disciplined about his life and the way he approached everything.

Although he would never seek any recognition for himself for any good that he did on this earth, when I happened on a website about the defense of Huandacareo, I decided to inquire about adding my grandfather's name. I had copies of certificates awarded in 1943 and 1964 commemorating his participation in the defense of the town.

The website is at: