Biography of Andrés Avelino Cáceres (1833-1923)

Military Peruvian, born in Ayacucho in 1833 and died in Lima on October 10, 1923. Hero of the campaign of the Breña during the war with Chile in 1879 and twice President of the Peruvian Republic during the second militarism.

He was born in Ayacucho in 1833, his parents Domingo Cáceres Ore and Justa Dorregaray Cueva. I was studying in a school in his homeland, when in May 1854 visited him Ramón Castilla, leader who had rebelled against the Government of José Rufino Echenique, leading to the liberal faction. The young Cáceres was attracted by the figure of the tarapaqueno leader and liberal principles, so it stopped studying to become Cadet battalion "Ayacucho", which the general Fermín de el Castillo was forming. Under his command, Cáceres in Lima fought the battle of La Palma, in was defeated it. For his role he/she was promoted sub-lieutenant and Lieutenant graduate and effective very soon. He/She intervened again to support the cause of Castile against the revolution of Manuel Ignacio de Vivanco in Arequipa. He/She fought in Yumina and Bellavista, and participated in the assault of Arequipa, which amounted him to captain. In the taking of the city received a wound under the left eye which, fortunately, did not commit you view.

When the conflict with the Ecuador between 1859 and 1860, Cáceres was still convalescing for wounds received in his last campaign, came to the defense of the border. He/She was then sent by President Castilla to France, as military Assistant to the Peruvian legation in Paris, to heal old and new wounds, returning to the country in 1862. He/She joined the battalion in Huancayo Pichincha. To produce the events that led to the war with Spain, Cáceres strongly opposed the attitude, which considered passive, Juan Antonio Pezet's Government against the occupation of the Chincha Islands by the Spanish scientific expedition. For his harsh criticism the Government was arrested and exiled with other officers, who managed to flee to Mollendo. The fugitives joined the 'restoring national honor revolution' led by Mariano Ignacio Prado against Pezet and the crippling Vivanco-Pareja Treaty, which accepted the conditions of the Spanish Armada. Then, Cáceres was promoted and supported the coup State of Prado, participating in the occupation of Lima. He/She took part in the battle of Callao and on May 2, 1866, where was defeated the Spanish Armada, who withdrew to the island San Lorenzo, then leave the Peru.

After these events, he/she requested retirement and was devoted to agriculture in the land that saw it born, between 1868 and 1872, until he/she was opposed to the attempt of coup d'etat in the Gutiérrez brothers, which was to become the first civilian President, Manuel Pardo Lavalle. Civil Party leader gave him the leadership of the battalion "Zepita" Cáceres gladly accepted. He/She had to turn off an outbreak of rebellion that emerged in their ranks and marched to Tarma and Chanchamayo to complete the formation of his men. He/She participated against the rebellion of Nicolás de PIÉROLA in Moquegua, beating him in the high in los Angeles, after which he/she was promoted to Colonel graduated. He/She was elected Prefect of Cuzco in 1877, without abandoning his military obligations in front of the Zepita. Playing that charge began the war with Chile and had to go to the South II Division, fighting in the campaign of Tarapaca, the battles of Tarapaca (27/11/1789) and San Francisco (19/11/1879). In the latter was where he/she had an outstanding performance when it managed to take the hills, pushing back the Chilean troops, who were forced to abandon their cannons Krup. Although Tarapacá was defended thanks to the skill of Cáceres, was a provisional victory because the Peruvian army was back to leaving the saltpeter territory to the enemy.

Cáceres collaborated in the reorganization of the army of the South for its concentration in Tacna together with Bolivian troops under the command of the new President, Narciso Campero, who had launched coup d ' état to Hilarión Daza. A political crisis due to the departure of President Prado, who was overthrown by Piérola Nicolás has also had given the country. In that context gave the campaign of Tacna, which intervened Cáceres, demonstrating great value in the Alto de la Alianza (26/5/1880). Then, the warlord turned to the capital, which arrived in August 1880. He/She was appointed commander General of the V Division of the army of the Center and went to Huaral to conclude the training of reserve army.

As effective Colonel participated in the Lima campaign, personally organized by the dictator Pierola, who formed two defensive lines too long: that of San Juan, composed of trenches and that went from the Morro Solar to Monterrico chico, and Miraflores, that was the line of redoubts, which went from Armendariz to road to Chosica.

Chilean troops under the command of Baquedano landed in Pisco and Curayacu, three miles north of Chilca, reaching Lima by the Morro Solar, which was being defended by Miguel Iglesias, who had been forced to retreat by the Chilean forces. Cáceres participated in the unsuccessful battle, having to retire at Chorrillos with what remained of his men in order, after having suffered heavy losses. After the defeat of San Juan, on January 13, 1881, Chilean troops torched Chorrillos and Barranco. Taking advantage of the drunk, Cáceres wanted some soldiers to attack by surprise to Chileans, but Pierola refused. Two days later, the Chilean army overcame the line of Miraflores, where Cáceres fought hard to suffer the drilling of his right femur. He/She went to a place clinic in San Carlos, and was hidden by the Jesuits in the cell of the father superior of the convent of San Pedro. He/She was still in convalescence, when he/she fled from Lima, on April 15, 1881, fearing to be found in the research that made the Chilean troops. He/She went to Jauja and he/she was named military and political Chief of the departments of the Centre.

During the Chilean occupation (1881-1883), Cáceres organized its y in the Mantaro Valley, in the Central Highlands, and established its headquarters in Matucana. He/She was promoted to general in August 1881. Then, it relocated its headquarters in Chosica, but not for long. He/She was offered the Presidency in 1881, which did not accept to not create more divisions. The major battles of the campaign of the Breña occurred in Pucara on February 2, 1882; again Pucará, Marcavalle and conception on July 9, 1882; and in Huamachuco on July 10, 1882. The latter was the only significant defeat suffered by the leader, as the other encounters were victories of Cáceres, which until today are remembered and recall through the popular folklore of the region. For their skills in the fight, he/she won the nickname of the "Brujo de los Andes". The successful campaign of the Breña lasted until the warlord of the North, Miguel Iglesias, gave the cry of Montán from his hacienda in Cajamarca to put an end to the war. An assembly named him President regenerator of the Peru and empowered him to sign a treaty with Chile. So that was signed the Treaty of Ancón in 1883, Cáceres was opposed to that.

As a result of the war, began the time of second militarism (1884-1895), where they had the political domain the most important military commanders of the war with Chile. At that time, Cáceres revolted against churches, who had to leave power and hold elections, leaving chosen hero of la Breña. In his first Government (1886-1890), the leader formed the constitutional party. In this context of crisis at all levels, Manuel González Prada gave a famous speech at the Teatro Politeama in 1888, where he/she expressed a fierce criticism to the last Republican and its leaders, including Cáceres, and revealed his deep antichileno spirit. This speech was given in the framework of an event held to raise funds for the recovery of Tacna and Arica provinces which were held by Chile since 1883. In this period developed indianism, which sought to revaluate the Indian and overcome discrimination that had been subjected. Its exponents included Clorinda Matto de Turner. It was an important step at the cultural level, which was enriched with a thoughtful reflection.

In order to cancel the external debt due to the fiscal crisis and the ruin of the foreign credit caused by the war, signed the controversial contract Grace in 1889. Through the contract agreed between the Peruvian State and Miguel Grace, representative of the bondholders of Peruvian foreign debt, the English bondholders completely cancelled debt amounting to GBP 51.000.000. In return, the Peruvian State handed over the railways for 66 years, 3 million tons of guano and undertook to pay 33 annuities of 80,000 pounds each. Bondholders formed a company for the management of the railways in London: the Peruvian Corporation. In addition, bondholders were to conclude the rail stretches of Chicla - La Oroya (central railway) and Juliaca-Santa Rosa (southern railway); and they pledged to build 70 kilometers more than any other railroad. Free navigation on Lake Titicaca and the free use of some springs in the country were also granted.

At this time began the exploitation of rubber and export agriculture. The Italian bank, which at the beginning took care of Italian residents and soon was growing and beginning to attend the national audience also emerged. After his presidential term, he/she was appointed Minister Plenipotentiary of Peru in England and France.

Meanwhile, to Cáceres Colonel Remigio had happened as President Morales Bermudez, who died without having completed his period of rule. His second Vice-President, Justiniano Borgoño, completed its period supported by the army. Finally, called elections and was victorious Cáceres. Against the re-election of the hero of the Breña rose a strong opposition, led by Nicolás de PIÉROLA, founder of the Democratic Party, who had joined the civil Civic Union, forming the national coalition. The civil war that broke out in 1895 was due, among other factors, to the opposition of the permanence of the military in power and the re-election of Cáceres. This was based on harsh criticism to its management, especially in relation to the signing of the contract Grace.

In the provinces were the y pierolistas and caceristas, fighting each other. Then, PIÉROLA came to Lima with his people by the cover of Cocharcas on March 17, 1895. Several days lasted the fight in the capital, while the caceristas had been forced to retreat to Palacio's Government. It is estimated that they were killed around a thousand people, whose bodies the not being able to bury, not just fired an unbearable stench, but also threatened the city with an epidemic. Faced with the situation, the diplomatic corps met and achieved a truce of 24 hours between the two sides to bury the bodies. The peace was extended and Cáceres had to resign. With the victory of Pierola was end the period described by historians as second militarism.

After the civil war of 1895, he/she moved to Buenos Aires, where he/she remained until the year 1899. He/She also lived in Paris. He/She was Minister Plenipotentiary in Italy (1905-1911) and Germany (1911-1914). When he/she returned to his homeland in 1915, he/she favored the election of José Pardo and Barreda. As the President did not correspond, Cáceres supported the movement that ousted him in 1919. He/She was honored with the title of Marshal on November 10 of that year. Andrés Avelino Cáceres died in Lima on October 10, 1923.

His daughter Zoila Aurora wrote, based on the stories of his father, the campaign of the Breña (1927) and Julio C. Guerrero the war between Peru and Chile (Madrid, 1924) and memoirs of the General Cáceres (Berlin, 1924; and Lima, 1973).