Biography of Ascensión Esquivel Ibarra (1848-1927)

Politician and Costa Rican lawyer, born in Rivas (Nicaragua) on May 10, 1844 and died in San José in Costa Rica in 1927. He/She was one of the most influential lawyers in his country. Costa Rican nationality since 1869, became President of the Republic in 1876, but his term was completed the same year by a military revolt; However, the Presidency came again a few years later.

It was appointed Foreign Minister in 1886, position where he/she remained until 1889. In this period, Costa Rica had a lawsuit with Nicaragua for his involvement in the construction of the Panama canal project. Esquivel launched Esquivel-Roman Treaty, which prevented the military confrontation between Costa Rica and Nicaragua.

In 1889 he/she decided to stand as a presidential candidate, but the result was not favourable and José Joaquín Rodríguez won the victory. Three years later participated in the elections to replace President Rafael Iglesias and emerged with the victory. Its legislature became effective on May 28, 1902, as a mediator of the rival fractions. Five days later, several soldiers tried to seize the barracks to overthrow the newly appointed President of the Republic and replace him by Demetrio Iglesias Castro, brother of Rafael who, to not support the attempt, made this to fail.

When Esquivel was elected President, the nation was at a delicate time: the price of coffee, one of the products that support the Costa Rican economy, had fallen and there were no funds from the Government. Despite this unfavorable situation, without money and with poor economic prospects, Esquivel got the progress of the nation. During his tenure he/she abolished a law set in motion by the former President that allowed the Chairmen of the country occur on two occasions to the elections and be eligible for re-election for another four years; He/She built the line that joins the city of Alajuela with Pacific; He/She contributed greatly to the development of the agricultural sector and boosted trade; in 1903 he/she took out to public tender the adjudication of rights to give lyrics to the national anthem; the following year he/she built the railroad to the Pacific, and resolved the issue of the limits of Panama, new address of Colombia.

His presidential term ended in 1906. He/She had to wait until 1917 to a position of importance: President of the Supreme Court of Justice, where he/she served until 1920.

After his death, his remains were buried in the General Cemetery of San José, but on January 15, 1984 moved to the mausoleum of former Presidents of the Republic, situated in the gardens of remembrance in the town of Heredia (Costa Rica).

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