Manuel V. Domenech

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Manuel V. Domenech Ferrer
Mayor of Ponce, Puerto Rico
In office
Preceded by Antonio Arias
Succeeded by Luis P. Valdivieso
Personal details
Born (1869-03-23)March 23, 1869
Isabela, Puerto Rico
Died 1942 (aged 72–73)
San Juan, San Juan
Political party Republican
Alma mater Lehigh University
Profession Politician, Architect

Manuel V. Domenech Ferrer (March 23, 1869 – March 15, 1942) was a Puerto Rican politician and engineer.

Early years[edit]

Domenech was born in Isabela, Puerto Rico. He graduated from Lehigh University, Pennsylvania, United States, 1888.[1] Domenech was also educated at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Rensselaer was instrumental in the education of Domenech because above it was the first polytechnic university in the United States and promoted the use of the most advanced resources in engineering and architecture. It was also located in Troy, New York, an area that was experiencing a great amount of growth and architectural transformation that included bridges, buildings, and private homes, just as Mr. Domenech was studying there. Lehigh University, on the other hand, is located in Pennsylvania, a state that was experiencing a most accelerated development in modernistic architecture at the time when the future architect studied there.[2]

Political career[edit]

When Domenech returned to Puerto Rico, he became a prominent architect as well as a prominent politician. He was a member of the House of Representatives from 1900 to 1902. He was mayor of Ponce in 1904. In 1914 he was named Commissioner in the U.S. Department of the Interior. Later he was Treasurer of Puerto Rico, from 1930 to 1935. In various occasions he also served as Interim Governor of Puerto Rico.[2]

During 1904, he served as Mayor of Ponce, Puerto Rico. In 1914, he was appointed to serve as Puerto Rico's Commissioner of the Interior, becoming one of the first Puerto Ricans to hold a presidentially-appointed Puerto Rico Cabinet position. He was subsequently appointed as Treasurer of Puerto Rico, a position he held from 1930 to 1935.

Domenech attended the 1928 Republican National Convention as an alternate delegate. His great grand nephew, Francisco Domenech, is also active in contemporary politics, but in the Democratic Party, where he serves as a so-called "superdelegate". Another relative, Douglas Domenech, his grand nephew, served as the Deputy Chief of Staff of the United States Department of the Interior and a Bush appointee to the White House Task Force on Puerto Rico's Political Status and later served as Secretary of Natural Resources of the Commonwealth of Virginia.[3]


Domenech is also known to have acted as municipal architect for the city of Ponce.[4] He was a civil engineer and, in 1914, also rehabilitated the house where King of Tenors Antonio Paoli was born and grew up.[5]

Death and burial[edit]

Domenech died in 1942 in San Juan, Puerto Rico.He is buried at Puerto Rico Memorial Cemetery.


After his death, a major avenue in Hato Rey, Puerto Rico was named after him. Domenech is honored at Ponce's Park of the Illustrious Ponce Citizens.[6]


See also[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Antonio Arias
Mayor of Ponce, Puerto Rico
Succeeded by
Luis P. Valdivieso