By Raphael Brewster Folsom
utilizing vast, newly unearthed documentation from files in Mexico, Spain, the U.S., and Italy, Folsom shines fabulous gentle at the desires, struggles, and tragedies of all individuals within the drama of come across. This finely wrought portrait of the Yaqui humans in colonial instances exhibits in brilliant aspect how natives, Jesuits, settlers, and executive officers jointly introduced a particular borderlands society into existence.
released in Cooperation with the William P. Clements middle for Southwest stories, Southern Methodist University
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Extra info for The Yaquis and the Empire: Violence, Spanish Imperial Power, and Native Resilience in Colonial Mexico
12 The rich rivers, forests, and soil of the river valleys supported high native populations. The lower Mayo and Yaqui River Valleys each hosted more than thirty thousand inhabitants. Daniel Reff has estimated the total population of lowland Sinaloa and Sonora at one hundred thousand. Largely because Guzmán and his party were so destructive, it is difficult to reconstruct the social, political, and material cultures of the various Cáhita-speaking peoples or the quality of relations among them.
Discordant passions drove them. Thirst for gold, rivalry with earlier conquerors, altruistic yearnings, desire for social precedence, and righteous hatred of the devil combined with hunger, thirst, and sexual desire as the main motives behind these expeditions. Added to this were an astonishing dearth of planning and a near total lack of sensitivity to local cultures. Taken together, these characteristics give one a fair idea of the destruction such expeditions wrought. Some conquistadors won treasure and glory beyond their wildest dreams: Pizarro held the Inca king Atahuallpa for a ransom that has been estimated at eleven tons of gold.
Five hundred “striking and handsome Indians” emerged to greet the Spaniards: They wore their customary brilliant plumes, conchs, beads, and seashells, and were well armed with weapons, though they wore little clothing, since they harvest little cotton. The general received them with much love and many gifts. This Río de Yaquimi is the most populous of all those the general traveled to, with fifteen thousand men in the ten leagues from the sea toward the sierra. There is a forested area of great freshness a quarter of a league [wide] and a cool river with quantities of good fish, and its shores are populated by many cultivated fields of corn, beans, and squash.
The Yaquis and the Empire: Violence, Spanish Imperial Power, and Native Resilience in Colonial Mexico by Raphael Brewster Folsom