Federal Republic of Central America

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Federal Republic of Central America

República Federal de Centroamérica
1823–1841
Flag of the Federal Republic of Central America.svg
Flag
Escudo de la Republica Federal de Centro America.svg
Coat of arms
Anthem:  La Granadera
"The Song of the Grenadier"
United Provinces of Central America (orthographic projection).svg
Capital
Recognised national languages Spanish
Religion
Catholicism
Government Revolutionary republic
History 
 Independence from Spanish Empire
September 15, 1821
 Independence from First Mexican Empire
July 1 1823
 Disestablished
1841
Currency Central American Republic real
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Flag of Mexico (1821-1823).svg First Mexican Empire
Free State of Costa Rica Flag of Costa Rica (1838-1840).svg
El Salvador Flag of El Salvador (1839-1865).svg
Guatemala Flag of Guatemala (1838-1843).svg
Honduras Flag of Honduras (1839-1866).svg
Nicaragua Flag of Nicaragua (1839-1858).svg
Los Altos Flag of Los Altos.svg
Mosquito Coast Flag of the Mosquito Coast 1834-1860.svg
Federal Republic of Central America, 4 real (1835). Struck in the San Jose, Costa Rica mint (697 were minted). Federal Republic of Central America 1835 4 Real.jpg
Federal Republic of Central America, 4 real (1835). Struck in the San Jose, Costa Rica mint (697 were minted).

The Federal Republic of Central America (Spanish : República Federal de Centroamérica), also called the United Provinces of Central America (Provincias Unidas del Centro de América) in its first year of creation, was a sovereign state in Central America consisting of the territories of the former Captaincy General of Guatemala of New Spain. It existed from 1823 to 1841, and was a republican democracy.

Spanish language Romance language

Spanish or Castilian is a Romance language that originated in the Castile region of Spain and today has hundreds of millions of native speakers in the Americas and Spain. It is a global language and the world's second-most spoken native language, after Mandarin Chinese.

Sovereign state Political organization with a centralized independent government

In international law, a sovereign state, sovereign country, or simply state, is a nonphysical juridical entity that is represented by one centralized government that has sovereignty over a geographic area. International law defines sovereign states as having a permanent population, defined territory, one government, and the capacity to enter into relations with other sovereign states. It is also normally understood that a sovereign state is neither dependent on nor subjected to any other power or state.

Central America central geographic region of the Americas

Central America is located on the southern tip of North America, or is sometimes defined as a subcontinent of the Americas, bordered by Mexico to the north, Colombia to the southeast, the Caribbean Sea to the east, and the Pacific Ocean to the west and south. Central America consists of seven countries: Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama. The combined population of Central America has been estimated to be 41,739,000 and 42,688,190.

Contents

The republic consisted of the present-day Central American countries of Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. In the 1830s, a sixth state was added – Los Altos, with its capital in Quetzaltenango – occupying parts of what are now the western highlands of Guatemala and Chiapas state in southern Mexico.

Costa Rica Country in Central America

Costa Rica, officially the Republic of Costa Rica, is a country in Central America, bordered by Nicaragua to the north, the Caribbean Sea to the northeast, Panama to the southeast, the Pacific Ocean to the southwest, and Ecuador to the south of Cocos Island. It has a population of around 5 million in a land area of 51,060 square kilometers. An estimated 333,980 people live in the capital and largest city, San José with around 2 million people in the surrounding metropolitan area.

El Salvador country in Central America

El Salvador, officially the Republic of El Salvador, is the smallest and the most densely populated country in Central America. It is bordered on the northeast by Honduras, on the northwest by Guatemala, and on the south by the Pacific Ocean. El Salvador's capital and largest city is San Salvador. As of 2016, the country had a population of approximately 6.34 million.

Guatemala Republic in Central America

Guatemala, officially the Republic of Guatemala, is a country in Central America bordered by Mexico to the north and west, Belize and the Caribbean to the northeast, Honduras to the east, El Salvador to the southeast and the Pacific Ocean to the south. With an estimated population of around 16.6 million, it is the most populated country in Central America. Guatemala is a representative democracy; its capital and largest city is Nueva Guatemala de la Asunción, also known as Guatemala City.

Shortly after Central America declared independence from the Spanish Empire in 1821, some of its countries were annexed by the First Mexican Empire in 1822 and then Central America formed the Federal Republic in 1823. From 1838 to 1840, the federation descended into civil war, with conservatives fighting against liberals and separatists fighting to secede. These factions were unable to overcome their ideological differences and the federation was dissolved after a series of bloody conflicts. [2]

Spanish Empire world empire from the 16th to the 19th century

The Spanish Empire, historically known as the Hispanic Monarchy and as the Catholic Monarchy, was one of the largest empires in history. From the late 15th century to the early 19th, Spain controlled a huge overseas territory in the New World and the Asian archipelago of the Philippines, what they called "The Indies". It also included territories in Europe, Africa and Oceania. The Spanish Empire has been described as the first global empire in history, a description also given to the Portuguese Empire. It was the world's most powerful empire during the 16th and first half of the 17th centuries, reaching its maximum extension in the 18th century. The Spanish Empire was the first empire to be called "the empire on which the sun never sets".

First Mexican Empire independent Mexico under a monarchical regime from 1821 to 1823

The Mexican Empire was a short-lived monarchy, and the first independent post-colonial imperial state in Mexico. It was the only former colony of the Spanish Empire to establish a monarchy after independence. Together with the Brazilian Empire and the two Haitian Empires, it was one of four European-style empires in the Americas; it lasted two years before transitioning into a federal republic.

Conservatism is a political and social philosophy promoting traditional social institutions in the context of culture and civilization. The central tenets of conservatism include tradition, human imperfection, organic society, hierarchy, authority, and property rights. Conservatives seek to preserve a range of institutions such as religion, parliamentary government, and property rights, with the aim of emphasizing social stability and continuity. The more traditional elements—reactionaries—oppose modernism and seek a return to "the way things were".

History

Independence 1821–1822

From the 16th century through 1821, Central America, apart from Panama, formed the Captaincy General of Guatemala within the Spanish Empire. In 1821 a congress of Central American Criollos in Guatemala City composed the Act of Independence of Central America to declare the region's independence from Spain, effective on September 15 of that year. [3] The process was bloodless with no resistance from the Spanish authorities as the Governor General Brigadier Gabino Gaínza, along with all the royal governors of the five provinces, were retained in office as executive powers pending a full transition to local rule. That date is still marked as independence day by most Central American nations.

Act of Independence of Central America Declaration of independence from Spain

The Act of Independence of Central America, also known as the Act of Independence of Guatemala, is the legal document by which the Provincial Council of the Province of Guatemala proclaimed the independence of Central America from the Spanish Empire and invited the other provinces of the Captaincy General of Guatemala to send envoys to a congress to decide the form of the region's independence. It was enacted on 15 September 1821.

Gabino Gaínza Spanish general and politician; 1st President of the Federal Republic of Central America

Gabino or Gavino Gaínza y Fernández de Medrano was a Spanish military officer and politician in Spain's American colonies. During the Latin American wars of independence, he initially fought on the royalist side, in Chile. Later, in Guatemala, he supported independence and became the first president of a united Central America extending from Soconusco through Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua and Costa Rica.

Absorption into the Empire of Mexico, 1822–1823

Independence proved short-lived, as local law and order broke down. Driven by regional rivalries, many localities refused to accept the newly formed federal powers in Guatemala—San Salvador, Comayagua, León, and Cartago were in open revolt. On January 25, 1822, the Junta consultiva in Guatemala City voted for annexation. A few weeks later General Vicente Filísola, the envoy of Emperor Agustín de Iturbide of the First Mexican Empire, arrived in Guatemala as the new ruler. [4]

San Salvador National capital in San Salvador Department, El Salvador

San Salvador is the capital and the most populous city of El Salvador and its eponymous department. It is the country's political, cultural, educational and financial center. The Metropolitan Area of San Salvador which comprises the capital itself and 13 of its municipalities has a population of 2,404,097.

Comayagua City in Honduras

Comayagua is a city in Honduras, some 50 miles (80 km) northwest of Tegucigalpa on the highway to San Pedro Sula at an elevation of 1,949 feet above sea level.

León, Nicaragua Municipality in Nicaragua

León is the second largest city in Nicaragua, after Managua. Founded by the Spanish as Santiago de los Caballeros de León, it is the capital and largest city of León Department. As of 2016, the municipality of León had an projected population of 206,264.

The annexation was controversial, with some seeing the Mexican constitution with its abolition of slavery and establishment of free trade as an improvement over the status quo . Central American liberals in San Salvador objected to this[ clarification needed ] and refused to accept Filísola's authority. The army[ which? ] was ordered[ by whom? ] to quell dissent.

Free trade policy in which countries governments do not restrict imports from, or exports to, other countries

Free trade is a trade policy that does not restrict imports or exports; it can also be understood as the free market idea applied to international trade. In government, free trade is predominantly advocated by political parties that hold liberal economic positions while economically left-wing and nationalist political parties generally support protectionism, the opposite of free trade.

Status quo is a Latin phrase meaning the existing state of affairs, particularly with regard to social or political issues. In the sociological sense, it generally applies to maintain or change existing social structure and values. With regard to policy debate, the status quo refers to how conditions are at the time and how the affirmative team can solve these conditions for example "The countries are now trying to maintain a status quo with regards to their nuclear arsenal which will help them if the situation gets any worse."

In the case of Costa Rica, the country decided not to join the Mexican Empire as part of the resolutions upon conclusion of the Ochomogo War (April 5, 1823), where imperialists lost against Republicans in the first civil war of Costa Rica.

After Iturbide abdicated (March 19, 1823), Mexico became a republic (formally proclaimed on November 1, 1823) and offered the previously annexed Central American provinces the right to determine their own destiny. Filísola turned over his power to the hastily formed National Constituent Assembly, which comprised representatives from each of the five provinces. On July 1, 1823, the Congress of Central America declared absolute independence from Spain, Mexico, and any other foreign nation, and established a republican system of government. [4]

Reconstitution of the Federal Republic 1823–1840

The liberal-dominated Assembly elected Manuel José Arce as president but he soon turned against his own faction and dissolved the Assembly. San Salvador rose in revolt against federal authority. Honduras and Nicaragua joined the rebellion and Arce was deposed in 1829. The victors led by the Honduran Francisco Morazán took power and Morazán was proclaimed president in 1830. To appease liberal supporters, the capital was relocated from Guatemala City to San Salvador in 1831 but as Morazán's hold on power was waning the opposition regained control in the provinces. [4]

The Assembly in 1838 adjourned with the declaration that the provinces were free to rule themselves as the Federal Republic dissolved. In 1839 Morazán was exiled as rebels from Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua entered San Salvador, evicting the governing institutions that held the region together. [4]

Dissolution of the union

In practice, the Federation faced insurmountable problems, and the union slid into civil war between 1838 and 1840. [5] Its disintegration began when Nicaragua separated from the federation on November 5, 1838, followed by Honduras and Costa Rica [6] (other sources give Nicaragua's secession date as April 30). [7] Because of the chaotic nature of this period an exact date of disestablishment does not exist, but on May 31, 1838, the Congress met to declare that the provinces were free to create their own independent republics. [7] In reality, this merely legally acknowledged the process of disintegration that had already begun. [8] The union effectively ended in 1840, by which time four of its five states had declared independence. The official end came only upon El Salvador's self-proclamation of the establishment of an independent republic in February 1841.

Name and emblems

The five rowed volcanos in the coat of arms of Central America was inspired by the Cordillera de Apaneca volcanic range of El Salvador, visible from the city of Sonsonate, which became the capital of the Federal Republic of Central America in 1834. Salcoatitan, El Salvador - panoramio (9).jpg
The five rowed volcanos in the coat of arms of Central America was inspired by the Cordillera de Apaneca volcanic range of El Salvador, visible from the city of Sonsonate, which became the capital of the Federal Republic of Central America in 1834.

The flag shows a white band between two blue stripes, representing the land between two oceans. The coat of arms shows five mountains (one for each state) between two oceans, surmounted by a Phrygian cap, the emblem of the French Revolution. The flag was introduced to the area by Commodore Louis-Michel Aury and inspired by the Argentine flag. The nation also adopted the term "united provinces", used in Argentina's original name, Provincias Unidas del Río de la Plata ("United Provinces of the Silver River").

Successor flags

Today, all five successor nations' flags retain the old federal motif of two outer blue bands bounding an inner white stripe. (Costa Rica modified its flag significantly in 1848, darkening the blue and adding a double-wide inner red band.) The short-lived sixth state of Los Altos was annexed by Mexico as the state of Chiapas.[ citation needed ]

Flag of the original Federal Republic of Central America, 1823-1839
Flag of the Federal Republic of Central America.svg
Member nations, 1839
Flag of Guatemala (1838-1843).svg Flag of El Salvador (1839-1865).svg Flag of Honduras (1839-1866).svg Flag of Nicaragua (1839-1858).svg Flag of Costa Rica (1838-1840).svg Flag of Los Altos.svg
Guatemala El Salvador Honduras Nicaragua Costa Rica Los Altos
Current flags
Flag of Guatemala.svg Flag of El Salvador.svg Flag of Honduras.svg Flag of Nicaragua.svg Flag of Costa Rica.svg Flag of Chiapas.svg
Guatemala El Salvador Honduras Nicaragua Costa Rica Chiapas

Later Central American federal unions

Despite the failure of a lasting political union, the sense of shared history and the hope for eventual reunification persist in the nations formerly in the union. Various attempts were made to reunite Central America in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, but none succeeded for any length of time:

See also

Related Research Articles

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Francisco Morazán Honduras general and politician

Francisco Morazán was a Central American politician who was president of the Federal Republic of Central America from 1830 to 1839. Before he was president of Central America he was the head of state of Honduras. He rose to prominence at the battle of La Trinidad on November 11, 1827. Morazán then dominated the political and military scene of Central America until his execution in 1842.

Flag of Honduras flag

The national flag of Honduras was adopted on March 7, 1866, based on the flag of the Federal Republic of Central America. In 1823 Honduras joined the United Provinces of Central America and adopted their flag. In 1866 it was amended; five cerulean stars were placed in the center to represent the five original Central American provinces. The colors and pattern are the same as the flag of the United Provinces of Central America. Civilian and government ships fly it as an ensign. Ships of the Honduran Navy fly as a naval ensign a version in which the five star emblem is replaced by the coat of arms of Honduras above an inverted arch of five small turquoise stars.

Coat of arms of Costa Rica coat of arms

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Francisco Gómez (El Salvador President) President of El Salvador

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References

  1. Cuhaj, George S., ed. (2009). Standard Catalog of World Gold Coins 1601–Present (6 ed.). Krause. p. 224. ISBN   978-1-4402-0424-1.
  2. Foster, Lynn V. (2000). A Brief History of Central America. New York: Facts on File. pp. 134–136. ISBN   0-8160-3962-3.
  3. "Documentos de la Union Centroamericana" (pdf). Organization of American States – Foreign Trade Information System. Retrieved October 12, 2014.
  4. 1 2 3 4 Munro, Dana. The Five Republics of Central America. New York: Oxford University Press, 1918. pp 24–34.
  5. "New Physical, Political, Industrial and Commercial Map of Central America and the Antilles: With a Special Map of the Possessions of the Belgian Colonization Company of Central America, the State of Guatemala". World Digital Library . 1845. Retrieved July 4, 2013.
  6. Minster, Christopher. "The Federal Republic of Central America (1823–1840)". Latin American History. About.com. Retrieved November 5, 2013.
  7. 1 2 Sandoval, Victor Hugo. "Federal Republic of Central America". Monedas de Guatemala. Retrieved November 5, 2013.
  8. Karnes, Thomas L. (1961). The Failure of Union: Central America, 1824–1960. Durham, NC: University of North Carolina Press. p. 85.
  9. Text in League of Nations Treaty Series, vol. 5, pp. 10–31.

Coordinates: 14°37′N90°31′W / 14.617°N 90.517°W / 14.617; -90.517