Unit 3 Notes.docx - Unit 3 Notes During the period after...

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Unit 3 Notes During the period after Santa Anna Mexico was torn apart even more by civil war and was searching for its identity as a nation. Out of this chaos emerged one of the more respected and revered figures in Mexican history, Benito Juarez. The movement during this time is known as La Reforma. It was a sincere effort to reform the structure of Mexico and many of its traditional institutions. The goal was to institute reforms in the favor of the lowly peasant and Indians to bring an end to the social injustices of the traditional system and its components. 1. Background a. Ouster of Santa Anna i. Led by army officers ii. Foreign powers would not support government iii. Resentment of the Treaty of Guadeloupe Hidalgo was still high iv. Liberals had gained strength and organization v. Forces ousting Santa Anna 1. Chiefly middle-class mestizos 2. Leaders were better prepared than the liberal movement of the 1830s 3. Demanded sweeping changes 4. Key individuals a. Juan Alvarez – first effective military spokesman for the liberals b. Benito Juarez i. Full-blooded Zapotec Indian ii. Served very capably as the governor of southern state of Oaxaca iii. Known for the honesty and efficiency of his administration iv. First gained prominence as defender of Indian rights in court c. Melchor Ocampo – lawyer and scientist, wanted to create nation of small landowners – probably most radical of the reformers d. Lerdo de Tejado brothers – Miguel and Sebastian – were considered astute theoreticians of government e. Many moderates joined the liberals i. Moderados – the fence sitters ii. Creole Ignacio Comonfort – a key leader of the moderates 2. Era of La Reforma & Benito Juárez a. Twenty year period of civil war b. Era had several different periods or stages i. Unseating of Santa Anna ii. Anticlerical edicts of 1855 & 1856 iii. Rewriting the constitution – 1857 iv. Civil war between the liberals and conservatives – 1858-1860 v. Period of peace under Juarez vi. French intervention and the imposition of foreign monarch – 1862-1867 vii. Reconstruction presidency of Juarez – 1867-1872 viii. Rule of Sebastian de Tejado until 1876 c. Problems facing the governments i. Empty treasury ii. Rebellions and uprising in several states 1. Attempts for independence in some states 2. Indians constantly creating problems 3. Basic problems in structure of Mexican society 3. First Steps After Santa Anna a. Liberals take control i. Occupied capital city in November 1855 ii. Formed provisional government 1. Juan Alvarez was president
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2. Juarez as minister of Justice b. Actions of the government i. Issued edicts known as Ley Juarez 1. Limited the power of the military and ecclesiastical courts 2. Limited their jurisdiction in purely civil cases ( military and ecclesiastical courts) 3. The attacks on the old special privileges caused an uproar 4. Alvarez turned the presidency over to Comonfort – thus alienating the liberals ii. Others edicts favored liberal objectives 1. 1856 new set of anticlerical announcements – Ley Lerdo 2.
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