Lorenzo de Zavala
Overview
 
Manuel Lorenzo Justiniano de Zavala y Saenz (October 3, 1788 – November 15, 1836) was a 19th-century Mexican
Mexico
The United Mexican States , commonly known as Mexico , is a federal constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the United States; on the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; on the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the east by the Gulf of...

 politician. He served as finance minister under President
President of Mexico
The President of the United Mexican States is the head of state and government of Mexico. Under the Constitution, the president is also the Supreme Commander of the Mexican armed forces...

 Vicente Guerrero
Vicente Guerrero
Vicente Ramón Guerrero Saldaña was one of the leading revolutionary generals of the Mexican War of Independence, who fought against Spain for independence in the early 19th century, and served briefly as President of Mexico...

. A colonizer and statesman, he was also the interim Vice President of the Republic of Texas
Republic of Texas
The Republic of Texas was an independent nation in North America, bordering the United States and Mexico, that existed from 1836 to 1846.Formed as a break-away republic from Mexico by the Texas Revolution, the state claimed borders that encompassed an area that included all of the present U.S...

, serving under interim President David G. Burnet
David G. Burnet
David Gouverneur Burnet was an early politician within the Republic of Texas, serving as interim President of Texas , second Vice President of the Republic of Texas , and Secretary of State for the new state of Texas after it was annexed to the United States of America.Burnet was born in Newark,...

 from March to October 1836.
Manuel Lorenzo Justiniano de Zavala y Sáenz was born on October 3, 1788, in the town of Tecoh
Tecoh
Tecoh is one of 106 municipalities in Yucatán state, Mexico., located 40 km south-east of Mérida, Yucatán. It has a municipla capital of the same name. As of 2003, the city Tecoh had a population of about 8,500 people. Most of the population is Maya. A number of buildings in the town were built...

, Yucatán
Yucatán
Yucatán officially Estado Libre y Soberano de Yucatán is one of the 31 states which, with the Federal District, comprise the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico. It is divided in 106 municipalities and its capital city is Mérida....

, to Anastasio de Zavala y Velázquez and María Bárbara Sáenz.
Encyclopedia
Manuel Lorenzo Justiniano de Zavala y Saenz (October 3, 1788 – November 15, 1836) was a 19th-century Mexican
Mexico
The United Mexican States , commonly known as Mexico , is a federal constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the United States; on the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; on the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the east by the Gulf of...

 politician. He served as finance minister under President
President of Mexico
The President of the United Mexican States is the head of state and government of Mexico. Under the Constitution, the president is also the Supreme Commander of the Mexican armed forces...

 Vicente Guerrero
Vicente Guerrero
Vicente Ramón Guerrero Saldaña was one of the leading revolutionary generals of the Mexican War of Independence, who fought against Spain for independence in the early 19th century, and served briefly as President of Mexico...

. A colonizer and statesman, he was also the interim Vice President of the Republic of Texas
Republic of Texas
The Republic of Texas was an independent nation in North America, bordering the United States and Mexico, that existed from 1836 to 1846.Formed as a break-away republic from Mexico by the Texas Revolution, the state claimed borders that encompassed an area that included all of the present U.S...

, serving under interim President David G. Burnet
David G. Burnet
David Gouverneur Burnet was an early politician within the Republic of Texas, serving as interim President of Texas , second Vice President of the Republic of Texas , and Secretary of State for the new state of Texas after it was annexed to the United States of America.Burnet was born in Newark,...

 from March to October 1836.

Early life

Manuel Lorenzo Justiniano de Zavala y Sáenz was born on October 3, 1788, in the town of Tecoh
Tecoh
Tecoh is one of 106 municipalities in Yucatán state, Mexico., located 40 km south-east of Mérida, Yucatán. It has a municipla capital of the same name. As of 2003, the city Tecoh had a population of about 8,500 people. Most of the population is Maya. A number of buildings in the town were built...

, Yucatán
Yucatán
Yucatán officially Estado Libre y Soberano de Yucatán is one of the 31 states which, with the Federal District, comprise the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico. It is divided in 106 municipalities and its capital city is Mérida....

, to Anastasio de Zavala y Velázquez and María Bárbara Sáenz. He graduated from the seminary at Mérida
Mérida, Yucatán
Mérida is the capital and largest city of the Mexican state of Yucatán and the Yucatán Peninsula. It is located in the northwest part of the state, about from the Gulf of Mexico coast...

 in 1807. He founded several newspapers, but his liberal political views led to his imprisonment in Veracruz
Veracruz
Veracruz, formally Veracruz de Ignacio de la Llave officially Estado Libre y Soberano de Veracruz de Ignacio de la Llave , is one of the 31 states that, along with the Federal District, comprise the 32 federative entities of Mexico. It is divided in 212 municipalities and its capital city is...

 in 1814. Fluent in Spanish, French, English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

 and Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

, he studied medical textbooks while in prison, and was ready to practice medicine upon his release in 1817. In 1820, he was elected to public office, and in 1821 was appointed Deputy to the Spanish
Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

 Cortes
Cortes Generales
The Cortes Generales is the legislature of Spain. It is a bicameral parliament, composed of the Congress of Deputies and the Senate . The Cortes has power to enact any law and to amend the constitution...

 in Madrid
Madrid
Madrid is the capital and largest city of Spain. The population of the city is roughly 3.3 million and the entire population of the Madrid metropolitan area is calculated to be 6.271 million. It is the third largest city in the European Union, after London and Berlin, and its metropolitan...

.

Personal life

In 1807 Zavala married Teresa Correa y Correa. They had three children, including Lorenzo, Jr., who served his father in Paris as secretary of the Texas legation and, after the battle of San Jacinto
Battle of San Jacinto
The Battle of San Jacinto, fought on April 21, 1836, in present-day Harris County, Texas, was the decisive battle of the Texas Revolution. Led by General Sam Houston, the Texian Army engaged and defeated General Antonio López de Santa Anna's Mexican forces in a fight that lasted just eighteen...

, served as translator for Sam Houston in his negotiations with Santa Anna. After nearly twenty-four years of marriage, Zavala's wife died in 1831. That same year, on 12 November 1831, he married Emily West of New York City and they had three children. Their son Augustine was later to become the father of Adina Emilia De Zavala
Adina Emilia De Zavala
Adina Emilia De Zavala was a teacher, historian and preservationist of Texas history. Her efforts led to saving the Alamo Long Barrack Fortress for future generations. She was born to Augustine De Zavala , son of Lorenzo de Zavala, the first Vice President of the Republic of Texas...

, who will be best remembered for her spirited and caring role in the fight to preserve the Alamo.

Book about US

Zavala's book Journey to the United States of North America, written in Spanish, was
published in France in 1831, but no English translation was published until 1980. It was reprinted in 2005 in paperback as Journey to the United States of North America. It precedes Toqueville's famous Democracy in America
Democracy in America
De la démocratie en Amérique is a classic French text by Alexis de Tocqueville. A "literal" translation of its title is Of Democracy in America, but the usual translation of the title is simply Democracy in America...

by five years and expresses similar opinions about America and Americans. Unique are Zavala's strongly expressed arguments that Mexico will not achieve American accomplishment and prosperity because of Mexican cultural defects. Zavala writes in his prologue:

However, it should be very useful to Mexicans, for it is to them that I dedicate it. In it they will find a true description of the people whom their legislators have tried to imitate---a people that is hard working, active, reflective, circumspect, religious in the midst of a multiplicity of sects, tolerant, thrifty, free, proud and persevering.

Freemason

A leader of the Federalist Party, he served in the Senate
Senate of Mexico
The Senate of the Republic, constitutionally Chamber of Senators of the Honorable Congress of the Union After a series of reforms during the 1990s, it is now made up of 128 senators:...

 and Chamber of Deputies
Chamber of Deputies of Mexico
The Chamber of Deputies is the lower house of the Congress of the Union, Mexico's bicameral legislature. The structure and responsibilities of both chambers of Congress are defined in Articles 50 to 70 of the current constitution.-Composition:The Chamber of Deputies is composed of one federal...

, and took an active part in establishing American York Rite
York Rite
The York Rite or American Rite is one of several Rites of the worldwide fraternity known as Freemasonry. A Rite is a series of progressive degrees that are conferred by various Masonic organizations or bodies, each of which operates under the control of its own central authority...

 Freemasonry
Freemasonry
Freemasonry is a fraternal organisation that arose from obscure origins in the late 16th to early 17th century. Freemasonry now exists in various forms all over the world, with a membership estimated at around six million, including approximately 150,000 under the jurisdictions of the Grand Lodge...

 in Mexico as an alternative to the older, well-established Scottish Rite
Scottish Rite
The Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry , commonly known as simply the Scottish Rite, is one of several Rites of the worldwide fraternity known as Freemasonry...

 (Escosese) of Freemasonry that had been introduced by the aristocratic elements previously loyal to the royal House of Bourbon
House of Bourbon
The House of Bourbon is a European royal house, a branch of the Capetian dynasty . Bourbon kings first ruled Navarre and France in the 16th century. By the 18th century, members of the Bourbon dynasty also held thrones in Spain, Naples, Sicily, and Parma...

. In 1826, the Grand Lodge of New York
Grand Lodge of New York
The Grand Lodge of New York is one of 29 independent organizations of Freemasons in the U.S. state of New York. It was at one time the largest grand lodge in the world in terms of membership....

 issued charters to five Masonic lodges in Mexico City. These five new Yorkino lodges formed the nucleus of the movement that favored decentralization of governmental power. Zavala became the Charter Worshipful Master of Independencia Lodge No. 454, but his political enemies forced him to leave Mexico in 1830.

Texas

When he traveled to New York, Zavala sought to interest Americans in the empresario grants he had received in 1829. These grants authorized him to settle 500 families on a tract of land in what is now southeastern Texas. In October 1830, he transferred his interest in the grants to the Galveston Bay and Texas Land Company. After spending several months during 1831 in France and England, Zavala decided to live in New York City until his return to Mexico in 1832. From December 1832 until October 1833 he again served as governor of the State of México, and in Congress as a deputy for his native state of Yucatán. In October 1833 President Antonio López de Santa Anna named Zavala to serve as the first minister plenipotentiary of the Mexican legation in Paris. When he learned that Santa Anna had assumed dictatorial powers later that year, Zavala denounced Santa Anna and resigned his commission. Santa Anna warned Zavala not to return to Mexico City, but this did not stop Zavala. In 1835 he traveled to New York and then to Texas, where he briefly shared a house with his friend Stephen F. Austin
Stephen F. Austin
Stephen Fuller Austin was born in Virginia and raised in southeastern Missouri. He was known as the Father of Texas, led the second, but first legal and ultimately successful colonization of the region by bringing 300 families from the United States. The capital of Texas, Austin in Travis County,...

. Zavala was naturally drawn into the politics of Texas. He at first advocated the cause of Mexican Federalism, but later became a supporter of the independence movement. de Zavala was one of the signers of the Texas Declaration of Independence on March 2, 1836. He served in the Permanent Council and later as the representative of Harrisburg in the Consultation and the Convention of 1836. Zavala's legislative, executive, and diplomatic experience uniquely qualified him to help draft the Constitution of the Republic of Texas
Constitution of the Republic of Texas
The Constitution of the Republic of Texas was written in 1836 between the fall of the Alamo Mission in San Antonio and Sam Houston's stunning victory at San Jacinto. The constitution was written quickly and while on the run from Santa Anna....

. The respect of his fellow delegates was evident when they elected him ad interim vice president of the new republic.

Zavala rejoined his family at their home at Zavala Point on Buffalo Bayou, from where they fled to Galveston Island as Santa Anna's army approached. After the Battle of San Jacinto
Battle of San Jacinto
The Battle of San Jacinto, fought on April 21, 1836, in present-day Harris County, Texas, was the decisive battle of the Texas Revolution. Led by General Sam Houston, the Texian Army engaged and defeated General Antonio López de Santa Anna's Mexican forces in a fight that lasted just eighteen...

, in accordance with the Treaties of Velasco
Treaties of Velasco
The Treaties of Velasco were two documents signed at Velasco, Texas, on May 14, 1836, between Antonio López de Santa Anna of Mexico and the Republic of Texas, in the aftermath of the Battle of San Jacinto ....

, Zavala was appointed one of the peace commissioners to accompany Santa Anna to Mexico City, where the general was to persuade the central authorities to recognize the independence of Texas. Shortly thereafter, Zavala returned to his home due to failing health and gave up his part in the affairs of government. While out boating, his rowboat overturned in Buffalo Bayou. Zavala contracted pneumonia and died at his home on 15 November 1836. He preceded Austin in death by only four weeks. He is buried in his home town of Channelview, Texas. The State of Texas erected a monument over his grave.

Memorial namesakes

  • Lorenzo de Zavala Archives and Library Building, Texas State Library and Archives Commission
    Texas State Library and Archives Commission
    The Texas State Library and Archives Commission refers to the agency in the state of Texas that is charged with overseeing and assisting with state-wide library programs, meeting the reading-related needs of Texans with disabilities, and finally preserving and providing access to significant Texas...

    , Austin

  • Lorenzo de Zavala Middle School, Irving, Texas

  • Lorenzo DeZavala Elementary School, Magnolia Park, Houston

  • De Zavala Elementary School, Channelview, Texas

  • Lorenzo De Zavala Elementary School in Crystal City
    Crystal City, Texas
    Crystal City is a city in and the county seat of Zavala County, Texas, United States. The population was 7,190 at the 2000 census. The mascot of Crystal City High School is the Javelina....

    , Zavala County
    Zavala County, Texas
    Zavala County is a county located in the U.S. state of Texas. As of 2000, the population was 11,600. Its county seat is Crystal City. Zavala is named for Lorenzo de Zavala, Mexican politician, signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence, and first vice president of the Republic of...

    , Texas

  • De Zavala Middle School, Amarillo, Texas

  • Zavala County, Texas
    Zavala County, Texas
    Zavala County is a county located in the U.S. state of Texas. As of 2000, the population was 11,600. Its county seat is Crystal City. Zavala is named for Lorenzo de Zavala, Mexican politician, signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence, and first vice president of the Republic of...


  • Lorenzo De Zavala Middle School, La Joya ISD,La Joya Texas

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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