nado from Nueva

the departure of Francisco Vazquez de CoroGalicia, Cristobal de Onate, as

lieutenant-governor, occupied no enviable position; nevertheless he behaved with prudence and circum

He was respected without being hated, spection. and he united justice with clemency as far as he was able. In war he seldom shared in the reckless confi dence of his fellow -conquerors, and never appeared over-hasty to attack but once engaged, he was want

ing in neither skill nor bravery. From the revolt of 1538, in which Governor Torre lost his life, to the departure of Coronado, there seems to have been no open hostilities on the part of the natives. Yet there was observed a growing spirit of discontent, and of disregard for the authority of the encomenderos which foreboded trouble; and here and there outrages began to be committed, until finally open insurrection was at hand. Certain ruling spirits among the conquered race were plotting mischief, and





sounding the minds of the several nations through Sorcerers from the mountains of secret agencies. Zacatecas, messengers of Satan the pious chroniclers called them, appeared in the northern towns of Tlaltenango, Juchipila, Jalpa, and elsewhere, inciting the inhabitants to rise and exterminate the oppressors.


refused to pay tribute, and abandoned their

houses and lands. In some parts the Indians killed the missionaries who tried to persuade them to return in peace and submit to Spanish rule; in other places they killed
their encomenderos, abandoned their towns, and re Fortified camps were estab tired to the mountains. lished in the mountains where the chieftains and warriors gathered to meet the unconquered Chichimecs. Upon their ancient altars again appeared the sacrifice; promise of supernatural aid through bloody omens was made by the sorcerers; and the effects of Christian baptism were removed by washing of heads

and other acts of penance. Few, indeed, were the towns in New Galicia, from Colima to Culiacan, not
represented at these mysterious conclaves. But while the conspiracy was thus wide-spread, active operations were confined for the most part to the region north of the Rio Grande, and east of the mountains about Nochistlan. Mixton, Nochistlan, Acatic, and Cuinao were the principal strongholds, and were under the command of Tenarnaxtli. In other parts of the coun try the warriors were also on the alert, but seemed in most cases to have awaited the results in the north. Their penoles and fortified cliffs, almost impregnable, were strengthened by walls supplied with trunks of trees and stones to be rolled or thrown down upon the assailants; they had been well provided with food and water, though the prophetic words of the magicians led the natives to expect that food would be miracu lously besto\ved they even reckoned on the annihila tion of the Spaniards by the deities without human




Nuno de Guzman had been there. As to more re cent causes we have the testimony of Cortes that 1 the trouble was due to Coronado s departure, and Mendoza s extortion of men and provisions for that

are not accustomed to seek long for the reason of insurrection and revolt among conquered nations. In this instance we need only call to mind that



Beaumont declares it certain that the expedition. insurrection originated in the brutality of the encomenderos. 2

Petition al


in Icazbalceta, Col. Doc.




Cortes had

complained as early as June 1540 that Coronado was leaving the country un protected. Col. Doc. Ined., iv. 214; see also Frejes, Hist. Breve, 79. 2 And in the face of such evidence, together with assertions to the same effect by nearly all the old chroniclers, and the appalling expositions of La Casas, Zamacois, Hist. Mej., iv. GG9-72, stubbornly defends the Spaniards. He slurs Las Casas and the writers who credit such statements, and in a ver bose and fallacious argument seeks to prove that the uprising took place be.tsause the natives would not accept the rites and customs of the Catholia




Before open hostilities began, Onate had gone to Compostela to make provision for the safety of the Tepic region and the coast. Here he left Juan de Villalba as governor, and returned to Guadalajara, where he learned that the Guaynamota and Guasamota Indians had killed the encomendero Juan de Arce. The viceroy was notified of the outbreak, and 3 And all available measures were adopted for defence. thus began the last desperate struggle of the natives of New Galicia to regain their ancient liberty.
Realizing his precarious position, Onate made an attempt at reconciliation. In April 1541 he sent Captain Miguel de Ibarra, with some twenty-five Spaniards and a considerable force of friendly Tlajomulco and Tonala Indians, up the Juchipila River to

The inhabitants had destroyed their deserted their towns, burned the church, thrown dov/ii the crosses, and retired to the mountain fast ness, or penol, of Mixton. Ibarra arrived, and through friars and interpreters the natives were exhorted to lay down their arms,
whereupon full pardon would be granted. The answer was a shower of arrows and stones, in which one of the Franciscan mediators was killed. The Spaniards fell back to consult future movements. respecting Shortly afterward they were visited by embassadors pretending peace, and who desired the next day, palm Sunday, April 10th, to be set apart for a formal conference. Ibarra was thus thrown off his guard, and retired to rest. Early next morning, during an eclipse of the sun as some say, the Spanish camp was attacked
they refused above all to discard polygamy. He quotes from Beaumont to sustain his view, but the citation has no bearing on the revolt whatever, merely on the zeal of the missionaries to induce the reluctant neophytes to leave their wives. On the contrary, Beaumont affirms positively que el inotivo principal que movi6 4 estos indios a rebelarse la dureza de algunos encomenderos. Crtfn. Mich., iv. 236. An occurrence during one of their savage feasts, interpreted as a good omen by their sorcerers, strengthened the belief of the natives in success, and probably hastened the outbreak. 3 It seems that during his visit to Compostela, Onate changed the site of the place from near Tepic to the Cactlan Valley, for greater safety. MotaPadilla, Conq. N. Gal., 112; Beaumont, Cr6n. Mich., iv. 235.



by overwhelming numbers.
put to

Ibarra was defeated and ten Spaniards were killed, including Cap tain Francisco de la Mota, and over two hundred of the native allies. 4 It was through the valor of Captain Diego Vazquez that Ibarra s party escaped utter de




among the wounded



Guadalajara, Onate set out with his force, except twelve whom he left to guard the city. He had not gone a league before he learned that the most gallant of Ibarra s companions were killed or captured, and that the whole province was in arms; whereupon he deemed it more prudent to return and defend the

town. Fifteen days later friendly Indians confirmed the alarming news of a general uprising in the regions of Culiacan, Compostela, and Purificacion, where the small Spanish garrisons were continually harassed; it was also said that the enemy intended to march
against Guadalajara.

Vazquez to the
for aid.

city of

Onate immediately sent Diego Mexico with urgent appeals

During the month of August 1540, Pedro de Alvarado had put into the port of Navidad, for water and provisions, with the formidable fleet prepared in Guatemala to discover the Spice Islands/ though now diverted to explore the newly found regions of
Cibola, for which were so




*In the Mendoza, Visita, in Icazbalceta, Col. Doc., ii. 106-8, it is stated that Ibarra was sent out with the friar Coruna, who heard of the revolt at Purificacion and came in person to Guadalajara. The same document men tions an expedition prior to that of Alvarado, in which Oflate with 50 Span iards was defeated after a battle of four hours. Herrera, dec. vii. lib. ii. cap. x., also makes Onate command the defeated party, consisting of 40 horse and as many foot, and a few Indian allies. note by Munoz in Pacheco and Cardenas, Col. Doc., iii. 377, also states that Mendoza was in Guadalajara in the early part of 1541. 5 According to a contract made with the crown. See Hist. Cent. Am., ii. Alrarado landed at Navidad for water and provisions. Tello, this, series. At Hist. N. Gal., 382; Jtemesal, Hist. Chyapa., 161; Torquemada, i. 323. Purificacion, Bernal Diaz, Hist. Verdad., 236; Vazquez, Chron. Gvat., i. 159. Most authors agree that he came to Navidad direct, though it appears he touched at several ports south before his arrival at this place.


there word reached


him from Juan Fernandez de

Hijar, commanding at Purificacion, concerning the critical state of affairs. Hijar explained their forlorn and begged the adelantado not to depart condition, without coming to their aid. The prospect of an encounter with so formidable a foe appealed at once to Alvarado s chivalry, to his devotedness to the interest of the crown, and to his

He landed love of great and perilous undertakings. his force, consisting of about four hundred Spaniards and some Indians, 6 who all agreed to render the re quired assistance before proceeding on their voyage At this juncture couriers arrived from of discovery. Mendoza, summoning Alvarado to Mexico, to arrange
The necessary matters concerning his expedition. his plans; but though he had deter order frustrated mined to go at once to the relief of Guadalajara, he could not disregard the request of the viceroy. He marched his forces to Zapotlan, there to pass the rainy season; and after some discussion with Mendoza s messengers, Luis de Castilla and Agustin Guerrero, Alvarado agreed to meet the viceroy at
Tiripitio in Michoacan, where relative, had an encomienda.

Juan de Alvarado,


It appears that Mendoza had received from the crown an interest in Alvarado s contract, which the latter was reluctant to concede. Difficulties arose between them on this point at Tiripitio, but were for tunately removed by the good offices of Bishop MarMendoza s roquin of Guatemala, who was present. plan to unite with Alvarado and exclude Cortes from further discoveries northward and in the South Sea was accomplished, as much to his own as to Alvarado s satisfaction. The latter was severely censured at the

time for thus conniving against the interests of his 7

The forces of Alvarado are variously given as from 300 to GOO. 7 Cortes never resented this ingratitude, but complained of Mendoza s con duct in the matter, and the cunning and avarice he displayed toward Alva rado. According to his testimony the adelantado anchored his magnificent



contract concluded, Alvarado accompanied the viceroy to the city of Mexico, to attend to the final preparations for the two expeditions agreed upon: one along the northern coast and the other to the
Islands, after which Alvarado returned to Galicia to join his troops and the fleet. When Cristobal de Onate, who was now sorely pressed by the savages, learned of Alvarado s return to Zapotlan, he despatched Juan de Villareal to notify him of the Mixton disaster, and to ask for early assistance. It was necessary to Alvarado s enterprise to leave the ports of New Galicia secure as a base for operations, so that there was inducement for him to hasten to Onate s relief. He sent fifty men to protect Autlan and Purificacion; fifty remained at Zapotlan to guard the districts of Colima and Avalos; at Etzatlan and Lake Chapala garrisons of twenty-five men each were stationed, and Alvarado himself with a hundred horse and as many foot pushed on to Guadalajara. TonaM and Tlacomulco had been kept faithful by Friar tonio de Segovia, and reenforced Alvarado on the way; he seems also to have been joined by a native force from Michoacan. Such was the rapidity of his march to Guadalajara, that the passage of the bar ranca of Tonala, which, owing to the river and the roughness of the country ordinarily required three days, was accomplished in a day and a night. Just before the arrival of Alvarado, which occurred June 12, 1541, Ibarra had returned from a new reconnoissance, during which he had met nothing but scorn





composed of 12 or 13 ships, at Huatulco in Tehuantepec, to take in He was prevented, however, by the viceroy s agents, who in provisions. their turn offered him provisions in the name of their master, demanding Alvarado refused, in exchange an interest in the fleet and in the enterprise. and sailed for Navidad. But the viceroy s emissaries had foreseen this and arrived there soon after the fleet. Alvarado had no alternative now but to submit to the viceroy s conditions, lest his starving forces should desert him; and thus it came about that Mendoza obtained a half ownership in the fleet. After the death of Alvarado the viceroy seized all the ships and even then claimed that Alvarado was still his debtor. Cortes, Memorial, in Escritos Rueltos, 134-5. Bishop Marroquin, writing to the emperor in 1545, refers to his services in arranging the difficulties whiJi had existed between Mendoza and Alvarado. Squier s MSS., xxii. 139.




council of war from the natives at Nochistlan. was held, and the fiery adelantado declined to await the coming of reinforcements from Mexico nor would he accept the aid of Onate s brave little band in the The lieutenant-gov attack he had decided upon. better acquainted with the enemy s strength ernor, and desperate valor, counselled prudence and delay.


mind the rugged nature of the country, recent rains which rendered operations of cav and the alry difficult. Other prominent persons joined Oiiate in his endeavor to dissuade the adelantado from so perilous an undertaking until troops should arrive from Mexico, but no reason could prevail, and he
called to


scoffed at their fears.

The conqueror had been summoned from weighty He would show Onate matters for this petty strife. a thing or two, and teach him how to quell his own
he exclaimed, "there disturbances. "By Santiago!" are not Indians enough in the country to withstand my attack, and a disgrace would it be to Spanish valor God has guided me hither and to employ more men. With a smaller I shall vanquish the rebels alone. It force than this I have discomfited greater hosts. is that the barking of such a pack should disgraceful I shall leave this city suffice to alarm the country. on the day of St John 9 with my own force, and not a citizen or soldier from Guadalajara shall follow.

And somewhat

Let them remain; the victory will be mine alone." Because of an sneeringly he added,

advantage gained by the natives, the have lost their valor!" Spaniards Now Onate was every whit as brave as Alvarado, but he was more prudent; the lives of the settlers, of their wives and little ones, depended on his judicious conduct. The taunt of the adelantado stung, but he would not treat the illustrious conqueror with disre9 Tello, Hist. N. Gal., 389, and other authors here say St James, which would be July 25th; Alvarado s disastrous defeat oo f 1r June 24th, or on S* John s day.







It pained him to see bravery becoming bra Alvarado s men were but lately enlisted, and vado; could not be compared with those so recently defeated at the Mixton. I am sorry to see you dej art alone," he said, "for I assure your worship there will be Had you but awaited the viceroy s reentrouble. forcements, we might have jointly pacified the country without much risk." More determined than ever, Alvarado replied: "The die is cast; I trust in God!" Thereupon he set out from Guadalajara with his forces, horse, foot, and Indians, toward Nochistlan. He stirred within his men their vanity and their valor; it was absurd to think of waiting for more men; the

fewer the number the greater the share of plunder. Thus was opened the last campaign of the dashing adelantado, one of the most reckless, and one of the

most cruel. Unable to remain

inactive, Oiiate followed with horsemen. Should his fears be realized, he twenty-five would be near to render aid; and in case of a hope less rout he might return in time for the protection of He crossed the Bio Grande and march Guadalajara. the mountains of Nochistlan toward Juchiing through pila stationed himself on a height from which he could witness the attack. On the 24th of June Alvarado arrived at the penol of Nochistlan, which was protected by seven walls of stone, earth, and trees, and defended by a multitude of warriors. After a short and fruitless parley he pushed forward to take the breastworks by

thousand Indians,

human flood opposed his progress. Ten men and women, poured down upon The sky was dark with like a torrent. aggressor


arrows, darts, and stones, and at the first shock twenty Spaniards fell dead. The ferocity of the enemy was such that they tore the bodies of the slain to pieces, threw them into the air, and then devoured them. Nevertheless Consternation seized the Spaniards. Alvarado rallied, and in a second onslaught ten more




Thirty out of a hundred, It was a result unparalleled in the It was indeed a perilous history of Indian warfare. The natives encour situation, yet they rallied again. aged by their victory, and aware of the determination of the assailants, were ready; they even came forth from their intrenchment and seemed desirous of tak
slain in a trice

the dust.

ing the open



Alvarado now ordered to the assault the Spanish Captain Falcon, one hundred strong, with five thousand Michoacan allies under Antonio, son of
Caltzontzin, the late king of that country, all to be supported by the cavalry. Disregarding his orders, Falcon attacked too soon, and without awaiting the support, pressed on toward the summit of the hill. Perceiving that the horsemen were not present the Indians offered little resistance until he had reached a point near the top of the penol, then, suddenly clos ing in upon his front and rear, they prevented the

With great difficulty cavalry from corning to his aid. the assailants extricated themselves from their des
perate situation, during which Captain Falcon with seven or eight Spaniards, and many allies, were killed. The enemy pursued the retreating Spaniards into the plain below, where bogs prevented the cavalry from effective action. The people of the penol were masters of the field, and the Spaniards were fairly put to rout. The rain fell in torrents; the roads became
impassable. For a distance of three leagues the elated Indians Alvarado pursued, and another Spaniard was killed. had dismounted to fight on foot, to cover the retreat in person. At last the Spanish forces were driven into a ravine between Yahualica and Acatic, when the fury of the pursuers began to abate, and they turned
9 According to Tello, Hist. N. Gal., 301, who has left us the most accurate account of the Mixton war. somewhat different version of Alvarado s attack is given by Herrera, dec. vii. lib. ii. cap. xi., who says that the combined forces of Onate and the adelantado marched on Nochistlan, See also Vega, Cr6n. Mich., MS., lib. iv. cap. vii.




back toward ISTochistlan. Alvarado endeavored to check the flight of his men, to rally and rest them; but they were terror-stricken and paid no heed to the To save their lives they orders of the commander. were now even willing the enemy should live; so onward they swept over the rugged ground, caring Alvarado s secretary, little for captain or country. Baltasar de Montoya, whose horse was much fatigued, was particularly anxious to widen the distance be tween himself and the enemy. Montoya rode in front of his master, who repeatedly told him to slacken his pace, or the horse would fall with him. But the scribe was beside himself with fear; so much so that on coming to a broken embank
ment, instead of economizing his fast failing resources he spurred the jaded animal toward the steep. When about half way up the horse lost its footing and fell, throwing likewise Alvarado and his horse to the ground, whereupon all were precipitated into a ravine 10 below. Montoya was not much injured, but the gallant conqueror lay crushed, his fair form broken

and mutilated.
Tonatiuh, the sun, had set; the immortal Slain by no enemy, he was none the clay. He was the last less a victim to his own rashness. of the famous four, and his death was as might have been expected. Cortes and Sandoval, though no less familiar with danger than Olid and Alvarado, were less Ever holding passion the slaves of reckless impulse. subservient to reason, and feeling to common-sense, they escaped violent death. Not that death by vio

Alas! one was

is necessarily worse or more than the long-drawn agony attending bodily appalling Alvarado s was not a disease or a broken heart. but neither was that of Cortes or glorious death, Columbus, whose last hours were made miserable by and a princely slights and insults, by foiled ambition

lence, quick deliverance,


The clumsy coward lived

to the age of 105 years.

Tello, Hist.

N. Gal., 392.




of the

New World

conquerors perished in bat

was not altogether on account of the superior prowess of the European. Surely the dan was apparently greater during the Noche Triste ger than in this retreat of Alvarado s, or in the captivity of Olid in Honduras. Look at the fate of Diego de of Alonso de Ojeda, of Vasco Nunez, Pizarro, Nicuesa, and the long list of captains who came to the Indies, and behold the irony of ambition And even worse, was the end of those of yet more exalted perhaps, ideas and successes, whose souls, no matter how high the achievement, or how great the reward, were racked with disappointment, envy, and hatred as the aching body was descending to the grave. Reverse the prov erb "Per aspera ad astra," and see what toils and suf ferings spring from renown Alvarado did not immediately expire. Upon a hastily prepared litter he was borne, in great suf fering, to Atenguillo, four leagues from where the 11 fatal fall occurred. Onate having witnessed the rout of the Spanish forces from his position, hastened to his relief; but the flight of Alvarado s party was so At rapid that it was impossible to overtake them. Yahualica, too late, he came up with stragglers from whom he learned the particulars of Alvarado s
and yet
! !


At nightfall the lieutenant-governor arrived at Atenguillo, and the meeting of the commanders was "He who will not listen to touching in the extreme. good counsel must be content to suffer," said Alvarado. was wrong; I see it now; yet most of all it was my misfortune to have with me so vile a coward as Montoya, whom I have rescued these many times from death." He was conveyed to the city of Gua dalajara to the house of Juan de Camino, who was

married to Magdalena de Alvarado, his relative; and
11 The first words Alvarado spoke after recovering his senses were: Esto merece quien trae coiisigo tales hombres como Montoya. Tdlo, Hiit. N. Cat. ,



after attending to his worldly affairs he expired, July 12 4, 1541.

exceptions, Alvarado s men left Guadala after their leader s death. But the garrisons jara at different points remained for some time at posted

With few

Onate s request; and at last a detachment of troops arrived from Mexico. Fifty men, sent by Mendoza, under Captain Juan de Muncibay, came late in July and increased the number of defenders to eighty-five. And the revolted natives, elated at their recent vic tory, redoubled their efforts to enlist in the struggle for freedom those who had heretofore held aloof. Many native chiefs, however, remained faithful to the Spaniards. One of these, Francisco Ganguillos of Ixcatlan, distinguished himself by arresting thirty of the rebel emissaries from Matlatlan, sending them 13 to Guadalajara, where they were put to death after having revealed a plan to attack the city in Septem ber, the intention being to annihilate the Spaniards At a coun before Mendoza could arrive with succor. cil of war it was resolved to defend the city to the last, though some of the officers were in favor of abandoning the country, or at least of retreating to TonaM. Onate, however, objected, maintaining that the Indians there were as treacherous as elsewhere. The strongest buildings about the plaza were forti fied, the rest being abandoned and torn to pieces for In the mean material to strengthen the defences. time Captain Muncibay and Juan de Alvarado made a reconnoissance, during which they had a sharp fight, and a thousand natives are said to have been slain.
la His remains were deposited in the chapel of Our Lady in Guadalajara; subsequently transferred to Tiripitio, thence to Mexico, and finally to Guate mala. Tello, Hist. N. Gal, 395-0, remarks: Torquemada and Remerightly sal erred when, speaking of Alvarado s death, they say it occurred at Etzatlan, or on the height of Mochitiltic, between Guadalajara and Compostela, and that the adelantado was buried at Etzatlan; and that Bernal Diaz errs still more, saying that it happened on some peiioles called Cochitlan, near Purificacioii. The sad fate which overtook Alvarado s wife, Dona Beatriz de la Cueva, during the destruction of the city of Guatemala, and the biographical sketch of Alvarado, is given in Hist. Cent. Am., ii., this series. 13




Telloi Hist.


Gal., 399.




the fortifications were completed, news came the natives w^ho supplied the city with food and by water, that the friendly people of Tlacotlan, a town of three thousand inhabitants, one league from Gua

had also rebelled. Captain Pedro de Placencia was sent to protect the carriers, but the enemy advanced upon him in such force that he was obliged to return headlong On into the city, with the pursuers upon his heels. of September the assailants appeared in the the 28th

The following morn entered Guadalajara, set day, they ing, St Michael fire to the abandoned houses, destroyed the church, desecrated the images, and desperately assaulted the The protected position of the fortified buildings. Spaniards and the skilful use of a few pieces of artil The lery alone enabled them to withstand the shock. entrances to the plaza were bravely defended only one Indian entered, and he was killed by Beatriz Hernandez, wife of Captain Olea, who distinguished herself throughout the war by comforting the women and children and aiding the soldiers. At one time the enemy were on the point of suc The powder had become wet and the cannon cess. useless, and an explosion occurred during an attempt at drying. Meanwhile the adobe wall was under mined and fell but the guns were brought to bear The Indians in time and the foe fell by hundreds. ceased their assaults, resolved to starve the besieged; they retired behind the buildings, where they were sheltered from the guns, and poured in upon the gar rison volley after volley of taunts and threats, prom ising to kill all the men and make concubines of the women. The virago Beatriz Hernandez, enraged these insults, would have sprung from a window by upon the savages to tear their tongues out, but was 14 The soldiers in time became prevented by the men.

vicinity, fifty thousand strong, for half a league about the town.

blackening the plain



Whereupon de pura

rabia volvid la trasera


alzd las faldas, dicieudo:



discouraged, and it was only by great coolness and presence of mind that Onate was able to prevent their spirits from sinking; he threatened finally to open the gates and allow all of them to be butchered in cold blood if they continued to display such pusilla nimity. series of sorties was now resolved on, and proved successful. During a conflict of several hours in which only one Spaniard fell, the hosts of the enemy were


routed, leaving fifteen thousand dead in and about the The Spaniards themselves were astonished at town. their victory over such vast numbers; but the secret of their success was soon revealed. Many of the
idolatrous Indians were found hidden in the town, San blinded and maimed, but not by hand of man. on his white horse had issued from the burningtiago church, at the head of an army of angels, and had fought for the Christians throughout the battle. Due

honors were paid to this saint for his timely inter position also to St Michael, on whose day the battle

Many captives were put to death, and others enslaved; those blinded by the hand of God were set at liberty; and many more were sent to rejoin their tribes after being deprived of their sight, or otherwise mutilated, and having their wounds bathed in boiling oil. It is hardly to be expected that wiien the heavenly powers set such an example, their This earthly followers should be slow to imitate. battle was regarded as one of the most hotly contested in the annals of the conquest, and a chapter might be filled with incidents of individual prowess. In October, in consequence of this siege, and the
was fought.
Spaniards fearing another attack, it was determined to transfer the city to its modern site south of the Rio

Grande. 15


aqui, que no bs verels en ese espejo, sino en este

y cuando

lo estaba diciendo se arrojaron una flechaque le elav6 las faldas con el tejado, en las vigas del techo, por estar baja. Telia, Hist. N. Gal., 406. 15 It was Beatriz Hernandez displayed her strength of mind. Here

through her resolute and determined decision that the new


site of

the city

was agreed upon.

Tello, Hist.


Gal., 415-16.



The viceroy and other authorities in Mexico had now become thoroughly aroused. The situation was The rebels were sending messengers in all critical.
and aimed at nothing less than the extermi Their nation of the foreigners throughout America.

superstitious fear of the Spaniards, of their


and of their horses, which had rendered conquest It was possible, had to a great extent disappeared. now well understood by the native leaders that they had to deal with men, not gods united action might throw off the yoke. This unity of action it seemed In the region about well-nigh impossible to attain. Mexico a successful rebellion could not be set on foot the only hope for the natives and danger to the Span Let two or three iards lay in the frontier provinces.

of these expel the intruders, regain their independence, establish fortified camps in naturally strong positions, offer an asylum and rallying-point to the disaffected everywhere, divide the forces of the Spaniards and thus gain time to arouse the native patriotism, and perfect a general plan of action the result would be

a desperate struggle from which the Spaniards had The Indian chiefs of New Galicia everything to fear. had hit upon the only plan which offered any chance of success; the hated invaders must be crushed wholly

and immediately.

hundred and and some thirty thousand Tlascaltec fifty Spaniards, and Aztec warriors, whose fidelity was assured by And promises of honors and wealth to their leaders. not without misgivings and opposition they were in trusted by the viceroy with horses and fire-arms, being authorized for the first time to manufacture and to The army set out from carry Spanish weapons. Mexico on the day of the battle at Guadalajara, and marched through Michoacan by nearly the same route


raised a force of about four

as that followed





in 1529.


16 There was some evidence of a plot for revolt between the natives of Michoacan arid the Tlascaltecs, as explained by Lopez in a letter to the em-



While Mendoza was marching to the valley of Cuind, Onate was preparing for the removal of Gua dalajara, and had for that purpose sent Juan del Camino with twenty horsemen toward Tlacotlan,

The Span Contla, and Mesticacan, to reconnoitre. were surprised to find as many Indians here as formerly, who had all been frightened into submission. These natives advised Camino, however, to proceed no farther, as the fierce Cascanes were preparing for another attack on Guadalajara. He thereupon re with him to the city a troop of natives turned, bringing with a large quantity of provisions. Meanwhile Mendoza arrived at the peiiol of Cuina, the first stronghold of the Indians attacked. It was defended by ten thousand warriors, who scornfully refused offers of peace, withstood a siege of ten or fif teen days, and were finally conquered by stratagem. party of Mexicans disguised themselves as Cuind warriors bearing water-jars, and gained access to the fortress, after a sham fight in which other auxiliaries of Mendoza pretended to prevent the succor. The army followed and in the hand-to-hand struggle which en sued, a large part of the defenders of the penol, with



and children, were slaughtered. In their and confusion many threw themselves down fright the precipice. Over two thousand are said to have been captured and enslaved. 17
their wives
peror. Icazbalceta, Col. Doc., ii. 141-7. He gives this plot as a reason for the opposition to arming the Indians, while Herrera, dec. vii. lib. ii. cap. xii. and others regard it as one of the incentives to Mendoza s campaign. Lopez says Mendoza s army included one half the citizens of Mexico and from 40,000 to 50,000 natives; Herrera, 450 Spaniards and same number of Indians, dec. vii. lib. ii. cap. v.; Beaumont, Gr6n. Mich., iv. 387-8; Tello, 10,000 Indians, Hist. N. Gal., 396-8, 417-19; Mendoza, Visita, 180 horsemen and a number of Indian volunteers, in Icazbalceta, Col. Doc., 110-12. The date of departure was Sept. 22d, according to Lopez, and Sept. 29th, according to Acazitli, Eel., in Id., 307. Tello says Mendoza left Mexico d, los principios de Enero 1542, having prepared the expedition d, los fines de 1541. 17 Navarrete, Hist. Jal., 75-7, mentions four other places in this region, one of them on the author s own estate, where bones and blood-stained stonea

showed battles to have taken place. Mota Padilla, Conq. N. Gal., 142, implies that there was no assault until after the stratagem. According to Beaumont, Ci-6n. Mich., iv. 390-1, 4,000 Indians killed themselves and 10,000 were slain. Herrera, dec. vii. lib. ii. cap. v., tells us the place fell easily and no




Mendoza then pushed forward over the Cerro The natives of Acatic and of the valley of

Zapotlan having surrendered without serious
ance, the
forces of

Onate and Mendoza effected a and marched against Nochistlan. The place junction was defended by a large army under Tenamaxtli, whose Christian name was Don Diego Zacatecas. In the first attack two of the seven lines of defensive works were carried, and the rest, except the last and strongest, were battered down by the artillery after a

The besieged at last proposed siege of several days. a suspension of hostilities and an attack on Mixton, promising to surrender when that fortress should fall. These terms were of course refused, and by a final The Spanish assault the last defences were carried. was planted by Captain Muncibay on the summit, flag and those of the defenders who had not escaped with The prisoners were their leader to Mixton, yielded. condemned to slavery by Mendoza; but Ibarra, who was the encomendero of the district, fearing its depop ulation and the ruin of his property interests, allowed
them to escape. 18 The Spanish forces then marched to Juchipila and found that all the natives had taken refuge on the Mixton, which was the strongest of all the rebel
were made. In Mendoza, Visita, Icazbalceta, Col. Doc., ii. 112-14, it appears that 248 slaves were made and distributed among the auxiliaries. Tello affirms that 4,000, besides women and children, killed themselves; Acazitli calls this 2,000 were killed by Spaniards, and 2,000 slaves taken. the battle of Tototlan, and represents it as having been fought Oct. 26,
18 The Spaniards were 15 days bombarding the place without results. The population was 60,000; 2,000 were killed and 1,000 enslaved. Mota Padilla, Conq. N. Gal, 146-7; Tello, Hixt. N. Gal., i. 422-5. They fought from eight A. M. to four P. M., when the place was taken after considerable loss. The battle occurred November 12th, and four Spaniards were killed. Acazitli, Rel, 312; Mendoza, Visita, 114. Number of Spaniards 1,000; auxiliaries 60,000 to 70,000. Navarrete, Hist. Jal, 80-2. There were 6,000 killed, and 10,000 enslaved, but subsequently released by Ibarra. Beaumont, Crou. Mich., iv. 398. Frejes, Hist. Breve., 154, speaks of a twenty days siege; 6,000 killed; 1,000 slaves; the natives surrendered for want of water and owing to the defec tion of a cacique. The Spanish soldiers were exceedingly loath to relinquish the slaves, but Mendoza seems to have approved of Ibarra s act. Tello and Mota Padilla say the people of Nochistlan were allowed to escape before the final surrender and not after their capture.



There were still assembled under Tenamaxtli a hundred thousand warriors. So strong was the position, and so bravely were the few accessible passes guarded, that after a siege of about three weeks, with continuous assaults, little progress had been made. But thousands of the patriotic defenders of their native soil had perished, swept down by Spanish cannon, and great suffering began to be ex perienced. Many of the christianized natives, and others who had joined in the rebellion on the sor cerer s assurances of an easy victory and abundant spoils, were tired of the hardships and slaughter, and leaving the penol by secret passes they returned to The warriors of Teul openly declared their homes. had come to the Mixton only to prove that they they were no cowards, and proposed a sortie by the whole force. This being declined, they marched out alone against the Spaniards; but, traitors as they were, they shot their arrows into the air and allowed them selves to be easily captured. They were pardoned and

accepted as auxiliaries or sent home, after having revealed a secret pass by which the viceroy s forces might reach the top of the penol. The disclosing of this pass was attributed by some
to St James, who appeared to Father Segovia and Accounts of the led the Christians to the attack. final victory are conflicting; but it seems that one or

two assaults, accompanied by great slaughter during which thousands cast themselves down the cliff, were
and that finally such survivors as or had not the courage to destroy could not escape themselves, surrendered to an embassy of friars who
and, repulsed;


These friars permitted Indians to retire to their many of the Christian towns before the surrender, on promise of good be The captives taken numbered over ten thou havior. sand. large proportion of the force at Mixton was

went unarmed among them.




subida de gates or

cats ascent;


named because

of the

difficult access to the





composed of Chicliimec tribes, and of these such as escaped slavery fled with their leader toward the moun 20 tains of Zacatecas and Nayarit. There were some further military movements, but apparently no serious resistance north of the river From Juchipila the Spaniards marched Tololotlan.

down the

river of that




Cristobal, at the

Thirty thousand native junction with the former. warriors had fortified themselves near Tepeaca, but on the approach of the Spaniards they were persuaded by Romero, the encomendero of the place, to scatter and abandon the idea of further resistance. In thus looking out for his own interests, he had but followed the example of Ibarra; but he had allowed the escape of the fierce Cascanes, one of the leaders of the rebel He was condemned to death by Mendoza, but lion. afterward pardoned in consideration of past services. The viceroy next marched toward the penol of Ahua-

where all the natives of the province of Compostela were understood to be fortified. Passing with his army south of the Rio Grande, probably in Jan 21 uary 1542, visiting many of the disaffected towns in that region, he extended his operations to Etzatlan and Tequila, where two friars had been murdered
22 during the year.

The inhabitants now seemed ready to submit with out further resistance. After several days at Etzatlan and when about to march on Ahuacatlan, the viceroy learned that Juan de Yillalba had taken that penol

20 Just before the attack on Mixton there was a day s discussion between the leaders! and the friars about the justice of the war. Mota Padilla, Conq. N. Gal., 149. According to Herrera, dec. vii. lib. v. cap. ii., Mixton surren dered without a struggle. The statements in regard to the number of killed and captured vary greatly. After the fall of Mixton, during Christmas festivities, they were near At Tequila Jalpa. At Ahuacatlan, February 2d. Acazitli, HcL, 318-27. January 23d. Hernandez y Ddvalos, in Soc. Mex. Geog., Boletin, 2da p. ii. 481-2. 22 According to Torquemada, iii. 607-9, the friar Calero was killed June 10, 1541, and was the first martyr of Nueva Galicia; Father Cuellar perished at the hands of the savages in the following August. Fernandez, Hint. Ectes., 158, mentions another, Fray Juan Padilla, as having been killed here about that time.



and dispersed the natives, and in the regions of Purificacion quiet was also restored. Here the viceroy was of Coronado s return from Cibola, where he apprised had found nothing worthy of note. Though Mendoza wished to proceed north to meet Coronado, he was From prevailed upon by Onate to return to Mexico. of New Galicia the news came that the every part bloody arbitrament at Nochistlan and Mixton was accepted as final, save in the mountains of Nayarit, where the fierce inhabitants had never been conquered, and were not to be so for nearly two hundred years and in the Culiacan Begion, where it was left to the army of Coronado to suppress such remnants of revolt

as might there be found.


made during



total number of slaves estimated at over five

say that Mendoza made no slaves. But even had his heart prompted so humane an idea, the army would not have consented. For what but the spoils do men endure the pangs of war ? 23 Alvarado s forces were subsequently relieved of their gar rison duty and allowed to depart at their pleasure, and Mendoza returned to the city of Mexico. I have thus given in brief the events connected with the great revolt in New Galicia, known as the Mixton war. The records are voluminous, but frag mentary and contradictory, bearing for the most part on petty details of military operations; of dealings between encomenderos and their subjects; of purely local events in hundreds of villages long passed out of existence; of tribal names and those of native


See Mota Padilla, Conq. N. Gal, 154. Says Beaumont, Crdn. Mich., 420: Llevando en trofeo y en senal de triunfo como unos cinco mil indios See also Tello, Hist. N. GaL, 433-6. This campaign cost Mendoza cautivos over 30,000 pesos; the loss and suffering among the auxiliaries was slight; the slaves were branded and distributed by Onate after deducting the royal fifth, but they were so few that the soldiers did not receive one fourth of what would have been the regular pay. Mendoza, Vista, 11518. Cavo, Tres Sif/los, i. 136, dates this campaign in 1543, and says no slaves or spoils were taken. Cortes charged that the cost and losses of Mendoza s campaign were greater than those of the conquest of New Spain, and that after all Nueva Galicia was not subdued. Icazbalceta, Col. Doc., ii. 63-4. Bernal Diaz, Hist. Verdad.,^ 236, disposed of this final campaign by stating that Maldonado was sent out,* and subdued the rebels.




and of Spanish leaders and their individual


The threatened perils of a general uprising of the American nations having thus been averted, the viceroy was again at liberty to turn his attention Coronado had abandoned the conquest northward. of Cibola and Quivira, and was returning homeward
with the remnants of his army. By the voyages of Ulloa and Alarcon the gulf coasts had been explored, and California proved to be a peninsula. Such results had evidently done much to cool Mendoza s ardor for northern enterprise. Yet, he had a fleet on his hands, and one route for exploration still remained open the continuation of that followed by Ulloa, up the outer coast beyond Cedros Island. Two vessels of Alvarado s former fleet, the San Salvador and Victoria, were made ready and despatched June 27, 1542, under the
24 For most of the events of this rebellion we are indebted to the three early chroniclers, Tello, Hint. N. Gal, 362-438; Mota Padilla, Cong. N. Gal., 11154, and Beaumont, Cr6n. Mich., iv. 59-66, 235-9, 386-421; MS., 300-3, 422-5, 550-80. Herrera, dec. vii. lib. ii. cap. xii., lib. v. cap. ii., also speaks of From these authorities Navarrete, Hist. Jal., these events at some length. 64-85; Frejes, Hist. Breve, 78-97, and Bustamante, in Gomara, Hist. Mr.x. (ed. 1826), ii. supl., 1-38, have prepared somewhat extended sketches. Origi nal documents on the subject are few. The Relation de la Jornada que hizo Don Francisco de Sandoval Acazltli, in Icazbalceta, Col. Doc., ii. 307-32, was written by Gabriel Castaneda at the order of Acazitli, a native chieftain who with his subjects accompanied Mendoza. It is a diary purporting to record the events of the march from day to day; however, it throws but little light on the subject, even in respect to dates, its statements being contradictory among themselves. The Mendoza, Visita, in Id., 102-18, contains what may be regarded as Mendoza s statements about many points, especially the treat ment of Indian captives and auxiliaries. Petition Contra Mendoza, in Id. y The Carlo, 63-4, gives CorteV views of the causes which led to the revolt. de Gerdnimo Lopez al Emperador, Oct. 20, 1541, in Id., 141-54, speaks of Mendoza s start and of the evidence of intended revolt near Mexico. The Requerimiento made to the rebels by the friars sent out by the viceroy, is given in Pacheco and Cardenas, Col. Doc., iii. 369-77. Other references are, Oviedo,


iv. 26;


Torquemada, iii. 604-9; Benzoni, Hist. Hondo Nvovo, 106-7; Salazar Olarte, Hist. Conq. Mex., 455-7; Bernal Diaz, Hist. Verdad., 236; Ramirez, Proceso, pp. xix.-xxiii., 278-82; Cavo, Tres Stylos, i. 132-3, 136; Gil, in Soc. Mex. Geog., Boletin, viii. 478; Hernandez y Ddvalos, in Id., 2da6p. ii. 481-2, iii. 188; Dice. Univ., i. 173-4, x. 1039; West- und Ost-Indischer Lustgart, i. 391-2; Gottfriedt, Newe Welt, 285-6; Burners Hist. Discov. South Sea, i. 220; Garcilaso de la Vega, Comentarios Rentes, ii. 80-1. Monumentos Domin. E#p., MS., 242-3. Parra, Conq. Xalisco, MS., 433-47, written in verse, is correct in some parts as to dates and events; but as for the poetry, the less said of it
the better.



After touch of Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo. ing at several points along the coast and passing through the Santa Barbara Channel, he died, and his


advanced in March 1543 past snow mountains to what he called latitude 44, but capped 25 found the cold so excessive that he turned back. During Cabrillo s absence two ships and three smaller craft, also remnants of Alvarado s fleet, were despatched by order of Mendoza from the western These vessels, sailing coast, probably from Navidad. 26 in command of Ruy Lopez de in November 1542 Villalobos, carried three hundred and seventy men, including several Austin friars destined for the islands
successor, Ferelo,

of the Pacific.


The original object of the expedition seems to have been to found a colony on Zebu, and Villalobos was particularly enjoined not to touch at the islands whereof the Portuguese held possession. This com
mand, however, was disregarded, either from necessity on account of stress of weather, or by miscalculations of the course, after many other islands had been

The expedition is but a contin sighted or touched. uous record of troubles in which the Spaniards became involved, largely by their own fault, with each other, with the natives, and especially with the Portuguese. 28 It was at this time that the Philippines were named, and more than one effort was made to send a vessel



26 Juan Fernandez de Ladrillero declared in 1574 that he and a company were in California until called back to join the expedition of Villalobos.

Hist. CaL,

full particulars of this i., this series.

expedition, see Hist. North Mex. States,


y Mex., Viage, pp. xlii.-iv. vaguely to Ulloa or Alarcon.



not pure invention,



details of the route followed and the discoveries made on this little to do, and therefore make but a slight mention in the The original authorities on the matter are vague and confusing. The text. best authorities are Grijalua, Cron. S. August., 51-60; Gaetan, Relations, in Ramusio, i. 416 et seq.; Galvanos Discov., 231-9; Herrera, dec. vii. lib.


expedition I have


best English authority is Burners Hist. Discov. South Sea, i. 226-43. con original reports of the expedition, more or less full, but everywhere and Cardenas, Col. Doc., v. 118 et flicting, are Villalobos, Viaje, in Pacheco Ter151-65. Other authorities are seq., and Santisteban, Carta, in Id., xiv. naux-Compans, Voy., serie i. torn. x. 259-65; Gomara, Hist. Ind., 135; Torquemada, i. 608; Cavo, Tres Siglos, i. 135. 28 In honor of the prince of Asturias. Cavo, Tres Siglos, i. 135.





back to New Spain, but contrary winds always pre vented it. Most of the survivors of the expedition
returned by way of Cape Good Hope to Europe in 1547 and the following years; but the leader died on the way, and Spain had as yet no foothold in that

Mendozawas prevented from entering upon quarter. further expeditions of discovery by a new law which forbade viceroys and governors henceforth to engage
29 any such enterprise.

Into this period also falls the memorable and disas trous expedition of Fernando de Soto to Florida and the Mississippi Valley. Though not belonging to my a slight allusion to the subject may not be province, out of place, as the remnant of Soto s force landed on the shores of Panuco soon after Mendoza s return to the city of Mexico. After departing from Cuba in 1539 with a formida ble force and well-appointed fleet, four years were spent in endless marches and countermarches through the regions east and west of the Mississippi, where the cruel barbarities which characterized the earlier

Gold was the watchword conquests were repeated. of Soto s band, and where it was not obtained blood must flow. Even the poor and destitute savages they plundered of their little property, and then tortured them because there was no more. The natives, at
friendly and hospitable, were finally compelled by exactions and cruelty to make common cause against the invaders. Driven down the Mississippi after Solo s death, the remnant of the unfortunate band arrived at the town of Pdnuco, after a most dangerous voyage of fifty-two days from the mouth of the river. The magnificent company of three hundred and fifty horse and nine hundred foot had in a measure met

Mendoza complained that after spending all his patrimony and running in debt to carry out his projects of discovery and conquest for his sovereign, he found himself estopped by the new law and by the acts of a visitador, which had alienated from him the credit and reputation he had formerly en joyed for the execution of those plans. Mendoza, Carta, in Pacheco and Car
denas, Col Doc.,







now reduced to some three hun dred men, haggard and worn, clad in tatters and the skins of animals. They were kindly received by the settlers and natives, and the Spanish viceroy invited them to Mexico, where they were properly cared for. 3*
their deserts, being
Full particulars of the expedition may be found in Gardlaso de la Vega, Florida, 255 et seq.; Robertsons Hist. Am., ii. 1005; Monette s Hfet. Discov. i. 63-4; in French s Hist. Louisiana, 97-220. Miss., Biedma, Narr.,


Not only

this episode,

but the early history





chiefly on Fray Antonio Tello, Fragmentos de la Historia de la Nueva Galicia, in Icazbalceta, Col. Doc., ii. 343^138. The author was a learned Franciscan
of Guadalajara, who occupied positions of honor and trust in his order during his long life and service in Mexico, being also one of the religious who accompanied Sebastian Vizcaino in his expedition for the discovery of

and a native


Island of Calif ornia

in 1596.


or at least revised his


between 1650 and 1652, when he must have been about 86 years of age. Mota Padilla, and Beaumont, author of the Crdnica de Michoacan, made
frequent use of Tello

Beaumont, who wrote about 1780, said that he had seen the manuscript long before, and that it had been lost, which implies that the loss occurred between the date of his Beristaiii, Biblioteca, refers to him as the seeing it and that of his writing.



The former speaks of manuscript. seems then to have been complete


as the Cronicon

author of the Historia de Xalisco y de la Nueva Vizcaya, MS., adding that an extract existed in the archives of the province of the Santo Evangelio of Mexico. Icazbalceta was not allowed access to those archives while the

Santo Evangelio existed, and after the closing of the convents he could not find the manuscript. The title of the book has reached us, thanks to Icazbalceta s efforts: Libro Segundo de la Crdnica Misceldnea en qne se trata de la,
Conquista espiritual y temporal de la Santa Provincia de Santiago de Jalisco y Nueva Vizcaya, y descubrimiento del Nuevo Mexico. The two fragments being a copy in the possession of Hilariano Romero Gil, of Guadalajara, were presented to and published by Icazbalceta, with the valuable literary assist ance of Romero Gil himself, as the editor informs us, and were preceded by remarks on what he had ascertained about Tello s manuscript, particularly chapters viii. to xiii., the last apparently incomplete, and chapters xxvi. toxxxix., probably of the second book, which chapters give a portion of the expeditions of Nufio de Guzman, the conquest of territories and founding of towns, an extensive account of the great uprising of the Indians in Nueva Galicia, and the campaign for their subjugation, to the capture of the Mixton The style is pure and even elegant as com in 1542 by Viceroy Mendoza. pared with contemporary writings, clear and to the point, and the writer

evidently availed himself judiciously of the labor of others to obtain infor mation.
later and complete book on the same region is that by Mota Padilla, Historta de la Conquista de la Provincia de la Nueva Galicia, Mex., 1870,




It contains a detailed historical and physical folio, 523 pages, and index. account of northern Mexico, New Mexico, and Texas, from the conquest till The author, born in Guadalajara October 6, 1688, was the second son 1742.

Matias Lopez, an hidalgo from Estremadura, and Ana de la Mota, a lineal descendant of the conquerors, and of illustrious family, who for all that at her marriage could not, it is said, sign the papers because she did not know


to write.


1713 to 1746, and even later, he

filled several


judicial offices, namely, those of district judge, attorney-general, and His character as a man, associate justice of the audiencia of Guadalajara.

lawyer, and public officer stands high. Matias de la Mota Padilla, as he preferred to call himself, having become a widower, was ordained a priest. The audiencia asked the crown to grant

him a benefice, but it was deaf to all solicitations in his favor. Icazbalceta, to whose investigations we owe what is known of that writer, declares BerisMota Padilla left no tain mistaken in saying that he was a prebendary. property at his death, which occurred in July 1766, at the age of 68. All his services might perhaps not have saved his name from oblivion, but his For writing this work he history preserved it with its honorable record. had a double object in view, namely, obedience to the king s command, and
saving from oblivion the deeds of the conquerors of the country, among whom had been his own maternal ancestors. In the preparation of his work he was
painstaking; he searched the public archives, examined private papers, con sulted many persons, and used the writings of the Franciscan friar Antonio Tello. The history was finished in 1742. It was sent by the author to the

king through the governor of Nueva Galicia in August of that year. The copy did not for some reason reach the court, and the king on hearing of the existence of such a work in 1747 directed that two copies should be sent him,
the expense to be paid out of the judiciary fund; but there being no available sum in that fund, the author had them prepared at his own expense. The
pesos, paper being worth then, in and 50 pesos a ream. Toward the end of 1753 he transmitted the work again; and the receipt not having been acknowledged, the author asked a friend who was going to Spain to solicit for him from the king a copyright that he might print and publish it, and thus be possibly enabled to recover the cost. All his efforts and expenditures were in vain. It seems that the copies forwarded the second time did not
original writing



him over 1,000

1741-2, from one to


reales per sheet,

reach the court, for the king on the 21st of February, 1790, asked for a copy. Still another was made and forwarded. Of the history there are several manuscript copies, of which I know four: that of the archive general,

and Andrade


now my own.


division of the

several copies; mine has two parts, each of 48 chapters. It in the feuilleton of the newspaper El Pais, full of gross errors,
left unnoticed.


better edition mentioned at

work varies hi the was published and should be the head was published

tinder the auspices of the Sociedad Mexicana de Geograf ia y Estadistica. I also possess a manuscript copy, 1 vol. folio, 832 pages, with an index in 17 pages, taken from volumes v. and vi. of the collection of Memorias Histr6icas>
exist in 32 volumes, except vol.

in the general archives of Mexico.