Republic of South Peru

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Republic of South Peru
República Sud-Peruana
Republic of Peru-Bolivian Confederation

1836–1839
Flag Coat of arms
Flag Coat of arms
Location of South Peru
South Peru within the Confederation
Capital Tacna
History
 -  Established March 17, 1836
 -  Disestablished August 25, 1839
Today part of  Peru

The Republic of South Peru was one of the three constituent Republics of the short-lived Peru-Bolivian Confederation of 1836–39.

South Peru was formed from the division of the Republic of Peru into the Republic of North Peru and the Republic of South Peru. These two Republics were founded in 1836 to be (with the Republic of Bolivia) constituent Republics of the Peru-Bolivian Confederation.

The Confederation came to an end three years later after being defeated by Chile in the War of the Confederation. In August 1839, Agustín Gamarra declared the Confederation dissolved; as a result South Peru and North Peru reverted to being a single Republic of Peru.

Background[edit]

The Peru-Bolivian Confederation was a plan that attempted to reunite the Alto Peru ("Upper Peru", now Bolivia) and Bajo Peru ("Lower Peru", now simply Peru) into a single political and economic entity. Marshal Andrés de Santa Cruz promoted an ambitious project to reunite these two territories on the basis of a confederacy. This integration was based not only on historical, cultural and ethnic reasons, but also on sound economic motives. The union was trying to restore the ancient commercial routes and promote a policy of open markets.

As President of Bolivia, Santa Cruz instigated several failed plots to achieve a political union with Peru, taking advantage of that country's chronic political unrest. His best opportunity came in 1835 when the Peruvian President General Luis Orbegoso requested his assistance to fight the rebel armies of Generals Agustín Gamarra and Felipe Santiago Salaverry. Santa Cruz defeated Peruvian caudillo Gamarra at the Battle of Yanacocha on August 13, 1835 and Salaverry at the Battle of Socabaya on February 7, 1836.

With Bolivian help, General Orbegoso quickly regained his leadership throughout the country and had Salaverry summarily executed. In retribution to the support he received from Santa Cruz, he acceeded to the formation of the new Peru-Bolivian Confederation. Santa Cruz assumed the Supreme Protectorship of the confederation and Orbegoso maintained only the presidency of the newly created Republic of North Peru.

Creation[edit]

At the instigation of Santa Cruz, a Congress of the Peruvian southern departments (Arequipa, Ayacucho, Cuzco and Puno) gathered at Sicuani and declared the establishment of South Peru (March 17, 1836.) Then, together with North Peru, they recognized Santa Cruz as Supreme Protector with extensive powers that enabled him to create the Peru-Bolivian Confederation on October 28, 1836. Santa Cruz then summoned to the city of Tacna representatives of both legislatures together with those of the Bolivian Congress assembled at Tapacarí to establish a Constitution for the new State. Under his direction, they signed a pact on May 1, 1837 which named him Supreme Protector for a ten-year period.

Structure of the republic[edit]

Golden coins of 8 escudos of the Republic of South Peru. The left is the reverse side with the coat of arms of Peru-Bolivian Confederation and the right is the head side, with the image of Sacsayhuamán, the symbol of 8E (8 Escudos) and the state motto: "Firme por la Unión".

There was, from 1837 until the dissolution, a Provisional President and a Congress, both with limited powers and under the control of Marshal Andrés de Santa Cruz who was styled the Supreme Protector.

  • First President: General Ramón Herrera Rodado (b. 1799 – d. 1882) (September 17, 1837 – October 12, 1838.)

Development and dissolution[edit]

Invested with considerable powers, Santa Cruz endeavoured to establish in Peru the same type of authoritarian order he had imposed in Bolivia. He issued a civil code, a penal code, a trade regulation, a customs regulation and reorganized tax collection procedures allowing an increase in state revenues while restraining expenditures.

However, the Confederation generated resistances among several groups in both countries, which resented the dilution of national identities, and also among neighbouring countries. An important number of Peruvian politicians opposed to the idea of the Confederation fled to Chile, where they received support and this led to the War of the Confederation. Chile declared war on December 28, 1836 and Argentina followed suit on May 9, 1837. The Chilean military expedition against Santa Cruz, led by Admiral Manuel Blanco Encalada failed and had to submit to the signature of the Treaty of Paucarpata, on November 17, 1837. The Chilean government then organized a second expedition, which defeated the Supreme Protector at the Battle of Yungay on January 20, 1839 and forced the dissolution of the Confederation. When Agustín Gamarra took office as the new president of Peru on August 25, 1839, he officially declared the dissolution of the Confederation and of the merging of the Northern and Southern Peruvian Republics into a single state to be called again Peru and separate from Bolivia.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]