Elections and Events 1900-1934

1900

Cardenal 2001:  “A partir de 1900, Pérez promovió…actividades para hacer frente a la infiltración protestante, tal como él la calificó” (page 281).

Wood 2000:  “In the first quarter of the new century, the ranks of the elite were swelled by European immigrants, who contributed significantly to coffee expansion and the development of economic infrastructure…Bearing names such as Hill, Parker, Sol, Schonenburg, D’Aubuisson, de Sola, Dalton, Deininger, and Duke, the immigrants came from various countries and joined the traditional Salvadoran elite as social equals.  The exceptions were immigrants from the Middle East, who established urban commercial firms…but who remained a distinct group within the upper class” (pages 227-228).

1901

Browning 1971:  “By the early twentieth century, commercial agriculture in El Salvador had become synonymous with the production of coffee…Coffee was king:  it earned the country’s foreign exchange, paid for its imports, provided the revenue for central and local government, financed the construction of roads, ports and railways, gave employment—permanent or seasonal—to a large part of the population and made the fortunes of a few.  The coffee planters formed an aristocracy of wealth and political power…They manipulated the process of political change to ensure the continuance of political stability and the existing economic order” (pages 222-223).

Schoonover 1991:  “In the early twentieth century, United States policies in El Salvador were inconsistent and at cross-purposes…The United States expected the Salvadoran government to adopt political, financial, and commercial programs that would facilitate American penetration of that society.  While U.S. political and economic influence was growing in El Salvador, that society was supposed to benefit materially through a transformation toward more liberal, democratic institutions.  When U.S. material and ideological goals clashed, ideology gave way to economic and strategic objectives, which were accompanied by the persistent interference of U.S. businessmen and government officials in El Salvador’s economic, political, and international affairs” (page 149).

December

Ching 1997:  “The ladinos made a second grab for power in 1901 [in Nahuizalco], and although it failed, it served as a show of strength.  The notable feature of the election was the dramatic increase in voting on behalf of the Indians” (page 133).  Describes election.

1902

López, Eugenia 2000a:  “Al final de su mandato, [Regalado] decidido a no reelegirse, promovió que Pedro José Escalón asumiera la siguiente administración, tenía confianza de que éste mantuviera la continuidad de su gobierno” (page 297).

Presidential election (Escalón / Partido Constitucional)

Soto Gómez 2005:  Pedro José Escalón “fue electo con la nueva bandera del Partido Constitucional” (page 163).

Vidal 1972: Names candidates (page 351).

1903

Cardenal 2001:  “Las  elecciones oficiales se iniciaron en 1903.  El presidente saliente escogía entre sus amigos y colaboradores a su sucesor, quien entonces se convertía en el candidato oficial, teniendo así asegurada de antemano la elección.  La votación tenía lugar durante tres días seguidos.  El voto no era secreto, sino que era inscrito públicamente en un libro llevado en el puesto de votación.  Los cafetaleros se trasladaban a sus plantaciones días antes de la elección para organizar la votación de sus empleados.  Lo mismo hacían los cañeros.  Las elecciones tenían lugar durante el tiempo de la corta del café, lo cual concentraba grandes masas de gente en las fincas.  Los cafetaleros y cañeros, además de obligar a sus trabajadores a votar por el candidato oficial, les forzaban a votar varias veces en las mesas electorales de los pueblos vecinos a las plantaciones…Era cosa común que los trabajadores de las fincas, después de votar una primera vez con su capataz a la cabeza, permanecieran merodeando en el parque pasando luego a votar una segunda y tercera vez.  En este sistema era de vital importancia el control de las municipalidades…Independientemente de la manera cómo se obtuviera el poder, las autoridades eclesiásticas siempre reconocieron y bendijeron a las autoridades civiles constituidas” (pages 243-244).

Cardenal Izquierdo 2002:  “(E)n 1903 se inició una nueva etapa de estabilidad política caracterizada por el gobierno de las familias cafetaleras.  Durante esta etapa las elecciones no estuvieron tan abiertamente presididas por el fraude como en el siglo XIX.  Sin embargo, pese a la apariencia de sucesión pacífica en el poder, el proceso siempre estuvo controlado por las mismas familias que se alternaban en el poder” (page 17).

Haggerty 1990: “Regalado’s peaceful transfer of power in 1903 to his handpicked successor, Pedro José Escalón, ushered in a period of comparative stability that extended until the depression-provoked upheaval of 1931-32" (page 12).

Krennerich 2005:  “From 1903 to 1931, all presidents were formally elected.  However, despite the universal male suffrage, in force since 1883, the elections had little political significance and the electoral competition was restricted to a small oligarchy” (page 270).

López, Eugenia 2000a:  “A partir de 1903 se notó un cambio:  comenzaba entonces una nueva era…En estos años las autoridades centrales conducían el proceso electoral bajo un severo control de los votantes por medio de las autoridades municipales y los finqueros.  La votación tenía lugar tres días seguidos y el voto era oral y público.  Era un sistema dual de patronato y clientelismo, en el que comúnmente los políticos, a su vez propietarios, hacían su clientela con los mismos trabajadores de sus propiedades; esto funcionaba así en el ámbito de políticos municipales departamentales y a nivel nacional” (page 292).

Webre 1979: “From 1903-1927, presidential elections in El Salvador were staged performances organized by the government in power for the purpose of installing its chosen candidate” (page 5).

March

Flores Escalante 2004:  “Don Pedro José Escalón, recibió las insignias del mando presidencial el primer día de marzo de 1903.  Como candidato oficial, se le brindó una masiva campaña electoral para hacerlo conocido del público y, como era de esperarse, resultó electo Presidente de la República por amplia mayoría de votos” (page 175).  Regalado “había entregado la presidencia, pero no el poder” (page 176).  “Escalón lo nombra Mayor General del Ejército, entregandole virtualmente el poder en las grandes decisiones políticas y militares” (page 272).

González, Luis Armando 1999:  “(F)ue…el finquero Pedro Jesús Escalón (1903-1907), quien se encargó de que la democracia institucionalizada por la Constitución de 1886—una democracia cafetalera—comenzara a funcionar en la primera década de 1900.  Con Escalón se inició la práctica de que el presidente saliente, teniendo prohibida la reelección, debía elegir a su sucesor para el siguiente período de cuatro años” (page 586).

Leistenschneider 1980:  “Don Pedro José Escalón (salvadoreño) gobernó como Presidente de la República:  1o marzo de 1903 al 1o marzo de 1907” (page 161).

López, Eugenia 2000a:  Escalón “era originario de Santa Ana, con él continuaba en el poder el grupo de hombres poderosos de occidente, que desde el derrocamiento de Carlos Ezeta se sostenía en la cúpula política…Se afirmaba que quien estaba en el poder tras el trono era el general Tomás Regalado, quien movía a su capricho los hilos de la política” (page 298).

Soto Gómez 2005:  “Cuando terminó el período del General Regalado, entró al poder don Pedro José Escalón, pero al decir de los políticos de entonces, quien realmente mandaba era Tomás Regalado, nombrado Ministro de Hacienda y Guerra” (page 163).

December

Ching 1997:  “In the election of 1903 [in Nahuizalco] the ladinos finally prevailed over the Indians by seizing control of the polling station” (page 134).

1906

Flores Escalante 2004:  “En 1906 Santa Ana se había convertido en la capital de los numerosos emigrados guatemaltecos.  Los rumores de una próxima invasión contra Manuel Estrada Cabrera, acaudillado por…Regalado, era un secreto a voces…Aunque el período presidencial estaba por terminar y se hablaba de que el próximo gobernante sería Regalado, ya que la ley no lo prohibía y el general aún contaba con mucha popularidad, las relaciones entre los dos hombres eran cada vez más difíciles” (page 185).

Schoonover 1991:  “In the years from 1906 to 1913 U.S. diplomats and businessmen opposed Salvadoran presidents General Fernando Figueroa and Manuel Enrique Araujo because these leaders, selected and sustained by the traditional methods of Salvadoran politics, guided Salvadoran society in ways which upset the U.S. idealized dream for El Salvador.  American dissatisfaction expressed itself in support for ‘democratic’ opposition leader and perennial exile Prudencio Alfaro.  Some of Alfaro’s support came from individuals or factions…which set a high priority on U.S. economic penetration of Salvadoran society” (page 150).

July

López, Eugenia 2000a:  “Tomás Regalado terminaría con la tranquilidad que había con Guatemala, así también acabaría con su misma vida al provocar el conflicto que se armó en el mes de julio de 1906” (page 300).  “(A) la muerte del general Regalado, el presidente Pedro Escalón…nombró jefe de la milicia del minsterio de Guerra y Marina [al general Fernando Figueroa]” (page 302).

August

Cardenal 2001:  “El obispo acompañó a Regalado hasta el final.  En 1906 intervino personalmente para lograr que Estrada Cabrera entregara los restos del ex presidente.  El 12 de agosto de 1906 ordenó al vicario de Santa Ana convocar al clero de la vicaría en la estación del ferrocarril para recibir el cadáver procedente de Acajutla…La curia pagó todos los gastos” (page 245).

1907

Cardenal 2001:  “La ley agraria de 1907 pretendió asegurar legalmente una oferta abundante de mano de obra.  Para ello proveyó la designación de jueces agrícolas en cada pueblo, quienes apoyados por el ejército debían velar por el abastecimiento de mano de obra a las fincas de los alrededores y por el cumplimiento cabal de los contratos de trabajo” (pages 48-49).

Cardenal Izquierdo 2002:  “En 1907 se aprobó la Ley Agraria, donde se recogían todas las leyes contra la vagancia existentes hasta aquel momento” (page 17).

González, Luis Armando 1999:  “(E)ntre 1907 y 1931 se siguió la regla de elegir presidentes civiles…El juego electoral era claro:  las autoridades centrales organizaban las elecciones, ejerciendo un severo control sobre los votantes a través de las autoridades municipales y los finqueros—cafetaleros y cañeros--.  Asimismo, se trataba de controlar al máximo la postulación de candidatos opositores.  La votación no era secreta y duraba tres días seguidos; ello hacía indispensable el control de las municipalidades, pero también hacía necesaria la colaboración del ejército—el major equipado, entrenado y pagado de Centroamérica—que veía en su alianza con la élite cafetalera una oportunidad para promover sus intereses corporativos” (page 586).

January:  presidential election (Figueroa)

López, Eugenia 2000a:  “El general Fernando Figueroa (1907-1911) fue electo el segundo domingo del mes de enero de 1907” (page 301).

Soto Gómez 2005:  “El Vicepresidente electo fue el Doctor Manuel Enrique Araujo” (page 165).

March

Bedford 1991:  “From its inception, the Figueroa Adminstration was plagued by domestic economic pressures and paramilitary threats…Meanwhile, the Salvadoran treasury was nearly depleted because slumping coffee sales had led to reduced revenues at the ports” (page 80).

Leistenschneider 1980:  Fernando Figueroa gobernó “como Presidente de la República:  1o marzo de 1907 al 10 marzo de 1911…El General Figueroa fue electo por el pueblo.  Vice-Presidente, Dr. Manuel Enrique Araujo” (page 165).  “Al General Fernando Figueroa le correspondió un período de crisis política…(D)ebido a tantos brotes revolucionarios, se vio obligado a mantener a la Nación casi todo el tiempo en Estado de Sitio” (page 166).

López, Eugenia 2000a:  “Al reorganizar el gabinete de gobierno, una de las nuevas medidas que adoptó fue la de asumir la cartera de Guerra y Marina, convencido que era una medida necesaria para la seguridad del país, y es que hacía más de un año que existía la expectativa y alarma por los trabajos de sedición de quienes deseaban adueñarse del poder político.  Particularmente se sentía amenazado por el general Potenciano Escalón, quien había sido candidato a presidente y decía no estar dispuesto a aceptar el triunfo del general Figueroa” (page 301).  “No era la primera vez que el general Figueroa asumía la silla presidencial, ya lo había hecho de manera provisoria cuando Rafael Zaldívar renunció” (page 302).  “Por estos años se desarrollaba un proceso de politización entre los sectores subalternos, lo que generó nuevas formas de respuesta” (page 303).

November

Anderson 1981:  U.S. president “Theodore Roosevelt…brought about a conference in Washington.  The Central American Peace Conference began on 14 November 1907, and ended on 20 December, having created six major treaties.  The most important of these was the one establishing the Central American Court” (page 8).

Bedford 1991:  “A series of agreements were consummated to prevent future wars.  Each nation again pledged to refrain from supporting paramilitary movements against neighboring states while also vowing not to recognize governments that come to power through coup d’etats…Lastly, the Conference resulted in the establishment of the Central American Court of Justice.  This institution was set up to mediate future conflicts in the region as an alternative to war” (page 78).

1908

Ching 1997:  “In Nahuizalco in 1908, the Junta de Elecciones reported that, ‘…in the act of voting by the citizens of this municipality for the officials to serve in the next year, it has resulted that the following persons were elected by a unanimity of 454 votes each’” (page 81).

1909

Wilson 1969:  “The process of military institutionalization began with a Chilean military mission in 1909” (page 164).

1910

Bedford 1991:  “In the 1910 Presidential contest…President Figueroa hesitated to throw his support behind Araujo because the former suspected that Manuel Estrada Cabrera, President of Guatemala, opposed the seating of Manuel Enrique Araujo, the favored candidate to win the election…A coup d’etat was planned in the event that the favored candidate, Manuel Araujo, won the election and failed to appoint Prudencio Alfaro to Minister of War” (page 109).

Presidential election (Araujo)

Bedford 1991:  “Araujo was successful at the polls” (page 109).

Soto Gómez 2005:  “Araujo ganó plenamente en unas democráticas elecciones…Su elección constituyó un evento cívico, y llevaba como compañero de fórmula en la Vicepresidencia a don Onofre Durán, agricultor y cafetalero de Ahuachapán” (page 167).

Vidal 1972: Gives candidates for president. “Triunfó por mayoría abrumadora el doctor Araujo” (page 359).

1911

Ching 1997:  “Figueroa stayed in office until 1911, when he passed on power to his Vice President, Manuel Araujo” (page 220).

López, Eugenia 2000a:  “El general Figueroa provocó descontento y oposición de políticos, quienes lo criticaron drásticamente por el control en el que quiso mantener a todo el país.  Un grupo de sus opositores que deseaban un cambio le apostaron al vicepresidente y cuando llegó el periodo electoral se vio presionado para colocarlo como su candidato” (page 304).

Schoonover 1991:  “While Figueroa exhibited no great commitment to broad-based, popular participation in a fair, just society, Araujo represented some of the best sentiments for justice, fairness, and social improvement which Central America produced in that era of rampant liberalism and positivism.  U.S. interference in El Salvador’s internal power struggle demonstrated little sensitivity to the social, economic, or humanitarian qualities of the various Salvadoran leaders or factions…To realign Salvadoran society, U.S. policy encouraged its destabilization” (pages 150-151).

White 1973:  “Significant early stirrings of the new direction in Salvadorean politics came in 1911…In that year Manuel Enrique Araujo arrived in the Presidency by the usual route, imposition by his predecessor through an election in which opponents were allowed to participate but not allowed to win” (page 90).

March

Cardenal Izquierdo 2002:  “La ausencia de un movimiento popular y una débil sociedad civil permitió que los gobiernos cafetaleros pudieran gobernar hasta los años veinte sin presiones procedentes de las clases subalternas.  Tan sólo el gobierno de Manuel Enrique Araujo (1911-13) llevó a cabo reformas dirigidas a aliviar la situación de los trabajadores rurales” (page 18).

Castro Morán 2005:  La “candidatura [de Araujo] fue propiciada e impulsada por la oligarquía con el objeto de paliar, amparándose en la destacada figura del Dr. Araujo, el descontento generalizado en el país debido a los malos gobernantes anteriores” (page 85).

González, Luis Armando 1999:  Araujo “buscó dotar a su gobierno de una mayor autonomía respecto de los intereses de los terratenientes…Para Araujo, los militares continuaron siendo unos aliados imprescindibles” (page 586).

Leistenschneider 1980:  “Doctor Manuel Enrique Araujo (salvadoreño) gobernó como presidente de El Salvador:  1o marzo de 1911 al 9 febrero de 1913…A los 46 años de edad fue electo Presidente de El Salvador por mayoría de votos…Vice-Presidente electo don Onofre Durán” (page 169).

López, Eugenia 2000a:  “Al momento de la trasmisión del poder algunos pensaron que las cosas en el gobierno seguirían de la misma manera, pues se necesitaba mucho para hacer cambiar su rumbo…Al pasar los días se dieron cuenta de que la forma de gobernar del nuevo presidente en algunos asuntos no tenía precedente.  Había empezado una evolución lenta, moderada, sin grandes sacudimientos” (page 304).  “Se opuso a los intereses de los cafetaleros, por lo que se establecieron fuertes contradicciones por las reformas a la legislación laboral y por el interés del gobierno de abolir las presiones por deudas de parte de los finqueros a los campesinos…Su gobierno condujo la depuración del organismo administrativo e hizo cambios importantes con relación a los gobiernos locales y colocó al municipio en plena independencia” (page 305).

Williams 1997: “(I)t was the civilian government of Manuel Enrique Araujo (1911-1913) that proceeded to organize a modern professional military structure in El Salvador. [Araujo] created the Guardia Nacional, the rural police force that remained in existence until the 1992 peace accords eliminated the military’s role in public security” (page 14).

1912

Cardenal 2001:  “Alfonso Quiñónez tuvo especial cuidado en manipular las elecciones municipales para poner al frente de las alcaldías a su gente” (page 244).

Leistenschneider 1980:  Alfonso Quiñónez “fue electo Alcalde de San Salvador en 1912” (page 180).

June

Cardenal 2001:  “La guardia nacional, cumpliendo órdenes de Casa Presidencial, forzaba a los campesinos a votar por el candidato oficial” (page 244).

Cardenal Izquierdo 2002:  “En 1912 se creó la Guardia Nacional con el objetivo de aplicar las leyes contra la vagancia y mantener el orden en el campo” (page 18).

Castro Morán 2005:  “Queriendo dar seguridad a la ciudadanía contra la criminalidad, el Presidente Araujo se dio a la tarea de organizar un cuerpo de Policía rural—la Guardia Nacional—, en junio de 1912, tomando como modelo a la Guardia Civil Española y trayendo de España instructores militares, mediante un acuerdo entre su gobierno y el de aquel país” (page 86).

Ching 1997:  The Policia Montada was “replaced in 1912 by a much larger and more ambitious organization, the Guardia Nacional.  The Guardia was trained by Spaniards who modeled it after their own Guardia Civil.  It rapidly became the preeminent military unit in the nation, while also garnering a reputation for its brutal tactics…The first Guardia patrols operated in the western coffee departments” (page 218).

Ladutke 2004:  The National Guard “functioned as a rural police force, giving the military control of public security.  The Manuel Enrique Araujo presidency also saw the creation of the paramilitary network of rural patrols (‘patrullas cantonales’).  The military organized these patrols out of the ranks of campesino conscripts who had finished their regular military service. Both the National Guard and the rural patrols proved the intelligence that allowed the state to monitor rural life” (pages 19-20).

Leistenschneider 1980:  “Creación de la Guardia Nacional—junio 1912” (page 170).

Paige 1997:  “The national guard, which had originally been organized in 1912 in a civic-minded effort to contain crime and brigandage, had rapidly become an instrument of rural labor control, and local commanders acted on the orders of local landowners” (page 108).

Wade 2003:  “(T)he National Guard was established in 1912 and paid for by the coffee elite itself to maintain ‘internal security’” (page 29).

White 1973:  “The National Guard (‘Guardia Nacional,’ modelled on the Spanish ‘Guardia Civil’), formed by Araujo in 1912 to combat crime in the countryside, came increasingly to be used as an agent of repression against the proletarian agitators, wherever they went outside the largest cities” (page 94).

Wood 2000:  The “pattern of coffee expansion in areas of relatively dense indigenous settlement, resulting in the expropriation of indigenous property and the widespread displacement of rural populations, was unique in Latin America.  The reorganization of El Salvador’s political economy led to a distinctive pattern of state-society relations, in which the required policing of land and labor fostered close cooperation between local landlords and the military.  The Guardia Nacional…was not only the principal force used to enforce property rights and labor law in the countryside; until 1948, it was also the most powerful agency of the nation-state” (page 227).

1913

Ching 1997:  “When Carlos Meléndez entered office in 1913, he looked to formalize the political control of the state.  To this end he founded the ‘Club Melendista,’ a pseudo-political party which he intended to use as a mechanism to regulate elections at the local and departmental levels” (page 239).  Describes its activities.

Lauria-Santiago 1999:  “Not until the creation of the National Guard in 1913 was there an effective rural police force” (page 156).

Lauria-Santiago 2004:  In 1913 “the governor of Sonsonate...attributed Izalco’s ‘flowering progress’ to the ‘many and very important ladino families who have managed to dominate the Indian masses, since for many years the local authorities have been composed of ladinos’” (page 21).

February

Cardenal 2001:  “En febrero de 1913, cuando Carlos Meléndez asumió la presidencia por primera vez, la clase gobernante tomó la forma de un grupo familiar cerrado que controló el país con la misma eficacia con que se controlaba una hacienda cafetalera.  Desde 1913 hasta 1927 el país estuvo en manos de la familia Meléndez-Quinónez.  Alrededor de ella se agruparon otros buscando las ventajas de la asociación a un sistema político corrupto e injusto” (page 242).  “Carlos Meléndez, primer designado, ocupó la presidencia para concluir el período presidencial de Araujo.  El 13 de febrero el obispo, cabildo, clero regular y secular de la capital y seminario visitaron oficialmente al nuevo presidente” (page 248).

Bedford 1991:  “On February 3, 1913, Salvadoran President Araujo was assassinated in El Salvador.  Rumors abounded that Guatemalan and Honduran officials were responsible, but no proof could be found to support this claim…Vice-President Don Carlos Melendez took charge of the Salvadoran government and vowed to establish friendlier relations with Salvador’s sister republics” (page 111).

Ching 1997:  “Because Araujo’s Vice President had resigned recently, the First Designate, Carlos Meléndez came to power, beginning what would become thirteen years of uninterrupted rule by members of the Meléndez-Quiñónez family” (pages 220-221).

Leistenschneider 1980:  Araujo “murió a consecuencia de un asalto criminal el 9 de febrero de 1913.  El crimen fue…el 4 de febrero del mismo año” (page 169).  “Se hace cargo del Poder Supremo don Carlos Meléndez el 9 de febrero de 1913” (page 170).  “Don Carlos Meléndez (salvadoreño) gobernó como presidente provisorio:  9 febrero de 1913 al 29 agosto de 1914” (page 171).

Lindo-Fuentes 1990:  “The only unsavory incident that affected the presidency during that period [from 1898-1931] was the assassination of President Manuel Enrique Araujo.  The motives of the crime were never cleared up, but insistent rumors linked it to business rivalries rather than to ideological differences” (page 153).

1914

Vidal 1972: Carlos Meléndez “electo popularmente” (page 362).

Local election

Ching 1997:  Discusses the municipal election of 1914 (page 241).

March

Leistenschneider 1980:  “El 4 de marzo de 1914, la Asamblea Nacional…proclamó Primer Designado a la Presidencia de la República [a Alfonso Quiñónez]” (page 179).

August

Leistenschneider 1980:  “Dr. Alfonso Quiñónez Molina (salvadoreño) gobernó como presidente por Depósito del Poder Supremo:  29 agosto de 1914 al 1o de marzo de 1915” (page 179).

1915

Browning 1971:  “Successive governments were created by administrative rather than political change, by agreement among small groups or even among families, as between 1915 and 1927 when President Carlos Meléndez (1915-19) was succeeded by his brother Jorge Meléndez (1919-23), who in turn acceded to his brother-in-law Alfonso Quinoñez Molina (1923-7)” (page 223).

Ching 1997:  Carlos “Meléndez was elected to his own four-year term in 1915” (page 237).

Lauria-Santiago 1999:  “By 1915 the wealthiest families known as the ‘fourteen’ (whatever their actual number might have been) were well established socially and economically, but not without the participation of many other elite sectors and family groups” (page 157).

January:  election

Cardenal 2001:  “Las autoridades eclesiásticas, pero sobre todo Pérez, mantuvieron muy buenas relaciones con la familia Meléndez-Quiñónez.  En enero de 1915 Pérez recibió con verdadero regocijo los resultados de las elecciones, pues en ellos vio ‘una valiosa garantía de paz y bienestar para la Nación.’  El gozo del arzobispo fue doble porque estaba persuadido de los sentimientos católicos del presidente Carlos Meléndez” (page 250).

Castro Morán 2005:  “(N)o le fue difícil al Sr. Carlos Meléndez ser el vencedor en la mascarada eleccionaria que se realizó en enero de 1915…En dicha campaña política se dio participación por primera vez en los comicios presidenciales al proletariado y, especialmente, al de pura cepa rural.  Más efectiva que en ningún otro lugar de la República fue esta participación en el departamento de Sonsonate, ya que dado el crecido número de indígenas obedientes a sus caciques, en las jurisdicciones de Izalco y Nahuizalco, ofrecía las mayores posibilidades de ganar la elección.  El medio más efectivo para obtener el voto del indio era el de halagar su amor propio y proteger a los cofradías” (page 91).

February

Leistenschneider 1980:  “Declárase electo para Presidente de la República don Carlos Meléndez y para Vice-Presidente, el Dr. Alfonso Quiñónez Molina—19 Feb. 1915” (page 181).

March

González, Luis Armando 1999:  Meléndez “se caracterizó por aglutinar a quienes, desde la producción y exportación de café, concentraron enormes cantidades de dinero.  Las familias, que se contaban entre las más importantes en la producción y exportación del grano, lograron monopolizar el poder politico” (page 586).

Leistenschneider 1980:  Carlos Meléndez gobernó “como presidente de la república:  1o marzo de 1915 al 21 de diciembre de 1918” (page 171).  “Vice-Presidente, Dr. Alfonso Quiñónez Molina” (page 172).

López, Eugenia 2000a:  “Carlos Meléndez…participó en la milicia que enfrentó la invasión de Justo Rufino Barrios en el año de 1885, y tres años más tarde lanzó su candidatura presidencial, pero en esa ocasión no fue el elegido.  Ligado a la política, continuaba al frente de sus propiedades…Llegó al poder como primer designado tras el asesinato de Araujo, decisión que fue tomada por el respeto del principio de la legalidad y en el siguiente periodo fue electo presidente constitucional.  Comenzaba así un periodo en el que el poder político nacional estaría en manos de la familia Meléndez Quiñónez” (page 310).  “Se inauguraba también una forma diferente de acceso al poder, que hasta ese momento fue por el regateo y la disputa por el cargo presidencial.  Se hacía no como una rebatiña dentro del único partido sino a través de una contienda electoral por lo menos entre dos partidos, no permanentes sino creados alrededor del candidato” (page 311).  “Durante este gobierno se gestaron diversos movimientos de oposición, organizados no solamente por grupos de militares sino también por estudiantes y obreros, quienes sostenían reuniones conspiradoras en apoyo al movimiento que desde Honduras preparaba el finquero progresista Arturo Araujo, sin embargo fue un movimiento fallido…Durante el gobierno de Carlos Meléndez la participación popular en la vida política fue más activa; se amplió la estrategia de creación de clubes como parte de las campañas electorales…Se logró en mayor medida la participación de artesanos y demás sectores en la contienda electoral a través de clubes…Al final de este periodo presidencial hubó cambios sustanciales en el proceso de elecciones para la sucesíon del poder de las municipalidades y del gobierno central.  Por primera vez en la historia política salvadoreña existía en el ambiente la inquietud de crear partidos políticos con programas definidos” (page 312).

1917

Anderson 1971: “The first steps toward popular organization in El Salvador were taken with the formation of Liga Roja in 1917.  Although ostensibly a labor organization, the league was deeply political in purpose, and while it appeared from its title to be a first cousin of the Bolshevik party, it was in fact a means of manipulating the lower classes for the benefit of the old crowd already in power.  The organization was the brain child of Dr. Alfonso Quiñónez Molina...who became the brother-in-law of President Carlos Meléndez” (page 22).

White 1973:  Quiñónez “formed the ‘Liga Roja’ (Red League) for the purpose of electing Jorge Meléndez in the 1918 election…It aimed to work not merely through the channels of administration to ensure the election of official candidates, but also attempted to acquire a mass membership or following by appealing to a popular demand for the improvement of living standards” (page 91).

June

Leistenschneider 1980:  “El 7 de junio de 1917, un violento terremoto dejó destruida la capital y pueblos aledaños, por haber hecho erupción el volcán de San Salvador” (page 172).

López, Eugenia 2000a:  “Arturo Araujo…se unió después del terremoto de 1917 a las acciones de apoyo a los damnificados” (page 315).

Wilson 1969:  “In 1917 and 1919 [San Salvador] was severely damaged by earthquakes and the eruption of the Volcano of San Salvador” (page 57).

October

López, Eugenia 2000a:  “Desde el mes de octubre de 1917 comenzaron a agitarse los ánimos en la capital, se habían iniciado, muy tempranamente, los preparativos para elegir al futuro presidente de la república pues las elecciones tendrían lugar hasta el segundo domingo de 1919.  Por tradición, el presidente designaba a su sucesor.  En la lucha electoral que se iniciaba se fueron formando dos corrientes:  la del médico de Suchitoto Alfonso Quiñónez Molina, cuñado del presidente y del vicepresidente de la nación, alrededor del cual se crearía el partido Democrático Nacionalista.  La otra corriente, formada por el doctor Tomás G. Palomo, Ministro de Hacienda, con quien, se decía el presidente se sentía comprometido, y por fuerzas militares que a través de este candidato aspiraban al control del poder.  Se creaba entonces el partido palomista” (page 312).

1918

Cardenal 2001:  “Cuando en 1918 Araujo amenazó seriamente la hegemonía de Quiñónez, éste respondió con la creación de la Liga Roja, organización paramilitar que agrupó a los seguidores de la familia Meléndez-Quiñónez.  Los candidatos opositores, frecuentemente procedentes del mismo grupo político y económico que el candidato oficial, eran amenazados, sus campañas electorales obstacularizadas, censurada su propaganda política y sus seguidores eran puestos en prisión.  Una vez proclamado el candidato oficial no había forma de evitar su elección” (page 244).

Cardenal Izquierdo 2002:  “En 1918, antes de las elecciones para elegir presidente a Jorge Meléndez, su cuñado, Alfonso Quiñónez, constituyó la Liga Roja con el fin de ayudarle a ganar las elecciones.  La Liga Roja fue el primer intento de crear un partido oficial desde el que canalizar el apoyo popular al gobierno” (page 18).

Ching 1997:  “It was in the midst of the heated electoral campaign that Quiñónez founded both the PND and the Liga Roja.  The PND was the political machine, the Liga Roja was its para-military wing” (pages 246-247).

Gould 2008:  “The first challenge to the governing clan came with preparations for the elections of January 1919.  Tomás Palomo initially combined official backing with a promise of democratic reforms and built a significant base among middle-class and working-class groups” (page 35).  “(I)n 1918 [Araujo] gave financial support to and participated in a workers’ congress” (page 58).  “The Ligas and the PND appealed to the indigenous people of Izalco as part of their drive to capture electoral support and organize las Ligas Rojas” (page 35).

Holden 2004:  “In 1918, Pres. Carlos Meléndez established the Liga Roja as the militia of his newly founded Partido Nacional Democrático (PND).  Although the government did not arm the Liga, it condoned its use of violence because of its capacity to intimidate, kill, or maim the opposition without directly implicating the state, thus making the Liga an agent of para-institutional violence…The Liga members were seen by Indian-majority towns as tools to recover some autonomy from both the state and non-Indians; the Indians who organized the Ligas expected the government to reward them by appointing them to local offices” (page 60).

López, Eugenia 2000a:  “(A)nte la crítica pública de que apoyaría a Alfonso Quiñónez, [presidente Carlos Meléndez] se decidió por Palomo, poco después de manera sigilosa pedía a miembros del ejército apoyar a éste, y de manera pública afirmaba que velaría por unas elecciones libres” (page 312).

Wilson 1969:  “Unlike other twentieth-century Salvadoran presidents, who based their leadership on elite support, Quiñónez incorporated both Indian and urban working groups into his personalist National Democratic Party in 1918” (page 66).  “In 1918 the Meléndez-family party, the National Democrats, promised land distribution to natives of Izalco” (page 105).  “Quiñónez Molina first resorted to the support of the popular groups during the election campaign of 1918, when the urban elements, students, teachers, merchants, and salaried employees aligned again Jorge Meléndez, Quiñónez’ brother-in-law.  In order to counteract this opposition the candidates organized workers associations, know in Salvadoran history as the ‘Ligas Rojas,’ at the departmental, district, and local levels.  By protecting the Ligas in their politically-related union activities the government secured the militant support of many workers” (pages 145-146).

August

Cardenal 2001:  El 8 de agosto de 1918, “Pérez lanzó una carta pastoral con intenciones de instruir al pueblo sobre sus deberes cristianos en las elecciones.  El arzobispo comenzó su carta estableciendo el carácter e importancia del sufragio y los deberes de conciencia que lo regían.  El pueblo, según Pérez, debía votar por el gobernante ideal a quien definió como persona “de ideas y sentimientos religiosos bien probados’” (page 250).  “Parecía que Pérez, al escribir estas líneas, pensó en la familia Meléndez-Quiñónez” (page 251).

December 8:  municipal election

Bedford 1991:  “Another test of U.S. will in El Salvador occurred in December 1918.  Municipal elections were scheduled for December 14.  By this time widespread domestic animosity towards the Melendez government had begun to spiral upwards…Melendez was hanging on with the support of the Salvadoran armed forces and the United States…The election went as expected.  Chronic violence accompanied the voting process with a battle erupting between supporters of Tomás [Palomo] and Alfonso Quinonez for control of the polling stations.  The Salvadoran National Assembly feared Civil war and possibly anarchy, therefore requested that U.S. warships enter Salvadoran ports to keep the peace if necessary” (page 148).

Ching 1997:  “The campaign between [Alfonso] Quiñónez and [Tomás] Palomo began in earnest around the middle of 1918.  Both candidates targeted the municipal elections of December 8th as a crucial moment in the campaign, for whoever could control the most municipalities would be able to monopolize the greater portion of the voting in the presidential election to be held between the 13th and the 15th of January 1919” (page 245).  Describes the election (pages 247-248).  “The elections were particularly violent with very few votes being cast” (page 247).

Holden 2004:  “(T)he especially bloody round of municipal elections [on December 8 1918]…left more than one hundred people dead” (page 64).

López, Eugenia 2000a:  “Los partidos políticos también estaban en campaña electoral para nuevas autoridades en las municipalidades; el Nacional Democrático fue el partido ganador en la mayoría de las localidades, muy a pesar de la presión oficial, de las fuerzas militares desplegadas en muchos departamentos y de la violencia que se generó entre civiles y agentes de la Guardia Nacional…El partido de Jorge Meléndez creaba las Ligas Rojas, organización paramilitar que le fue útil para ejercer control de sus opositores durante la campaña” (page 313).

December 11-21

Ching 1997:  “Quiñónez likely would have gone on to win the Presidency had it not been for a totally unexpected political development.  On December 11, just three days after the municipal elections, Carlos Meléndez fell ill…(H)e was unable to remain in office.  On the 21st of December, during a momentary recovery, he turned the Presidency over to Quiñónez, who as Vice President was the legal successor…Palomo immediately withdrew from the race…Quiñónez technically was disqualified from running in the election, because he was holding the office within six months prior to the inauguration.  Suddenly, there were no candidates for the election” (pages 248-249).

Leistenschneider 1980:  Alfonso Quiñónez gobernó “como presidente por Depósito del Poder Supremo:  21 diciembre de 1918 al 1o de marzo de 1919” (page 179).

Wilson 1969:  “Carlos Meléndez was succeeded by his brother-in-law and president designate [Quiñónez] for the completion of Meléndez’ unexpired term” (page 104).

1919

Ching 1997:  Quiñónez “turned to his novice brother-in-law, Jorge Meléndez, announcing him as the PND candidate less than one week before the election.  In another odd turn of events, a political novice by the name of Arturo Araujo announced that he would challenge Meléndez in the election” (page 249).

January 13-15:  presidential election (Meléndez / PND)

Anderson 1971: “Through its votes and strong-arm methods, the organization [Liga Roja] helped to elect Carlos’s brother Jorge Meléndez in 1919, despite his being a very unsavory politico with no record as a friend of labor” (pages 22-23). 

Bedford 1991:  “The January 1919 Salvadoran presidential elections proceeded along the same lines as the 1918 municipal debacle, but this time the stakes were higher.  In the 1919 election, the historically urban controlled political machines faced the competition of a caudillo with  organized peasant support.  Arturo Araujo, long time caudillo and rich coffee grower, made use of the peasantry in an impressive fashion for the first time in Salvadoran history” (page 149).  “Araujo had spent years organizing peasants for political purposes (voting) in the countryside, portraying himself as a benevolent coffee grower.  This worked to gain the support of rural workers and peasants, but alienated fellow coffee growers.  Conservative members of the oligarchy viewed Araujo as a traitor and potential enemy of the state…On the second and third days of the election Araujo’s supporters were turned away from the polls because the benevolent caudillo received ‘too many votes.’  As was customary in Salvadoran presidential elections, the victory went to the party that militarily controlled the polling stations.  In this case it was the Melendez-Quiñónez ticket” (page 150).

Cardenal 2001:  “En las elecciones de 1919…Salvador Sol fue visto con 200 hombres procedentes de su finca en tres pueblos diferentes, votando por Jorge Meléndez” (page 244).

Ching 1997:  “Meléndez and Quiñónez did not take kindly to Araujo’s sudden entrance into the race.  Although they announced that he would be allowed to participate freely in the election, they insured that he would receive almost no votes…(T)hey arranged for a third person who was not even a candidate in the election [Pio Romero Bosque] to receive more votes than Araujo” (page 250).  Describes the election (pages 250-251).  “The final results from the election had Meléndez receiving 166,441 votes, Pío Romero 4,370 votes, and Araujo 1,022 votes.  Quiñónez was elected Vice President, and Romero was selected as Minister of War…Incensed over the results of the election, Araujo spent the next year planning the overthrow of the Meléndez government” (page 251).  “Following their victory in the election of 1919, Meléndez and Quiñónez worked to consolidate their authority and expand the PND…The party was indistinguishable from the government” (page 253).

Gould 2008:  “The family clan chose…to perpetuate itself in power by electing Jorge Melendez through electoral fraud and making ample use of the violent Ligas Rojas” (page 35).  Araujo “ran as an opposition candidate in the presidential elections of 1919, as the Melendez-Quiñónez clan began to establish its control over the country’s political machinery.  After the elections were allegedly stolen, the National Guard was sent to his farms to suppress efforts to organize a revolt” (page 58).

Wilson 1969:  “In the election of…1919, Quiñónez deferred to Carlos’ brother Jorge Meléndez” (page 104).

February

López, Eugenia 2000a:  “Jorge Meléndez fue declarado presidente de la república el 20 de febrero de 1919, para cumplir un mandato de cuatro años…[Quiñónez] permanecería en el poder, pues no sólo había ejercido el poder durante el mandato anterior sino que también continuaría detrás del trono durante la presidencia del nuevo presidente, pues él había sido el verdadero creador del sistema político y económico en el que había descansado el gobierno de Carlos Meléndez” (pages 313-314).

March

Cardenal 2001:  “El 8 de marzo de 1919, después de la toma de posesión de Jorge Meléndez y teniendo en mente la violencia con que se habían realizado las elecciones, el arzobispo publicó otra carta pastoral dando gracias a Dios porque la paz había sido restablecida y el orden público consolidado.  Eso implicaba el afianzamiento en el poder de las autoridades constituidas” (page 251).

Gould 2008:  “The Melendez-Quiñónez regime had to respond to demands from increasingly heterogeneous rural and urban social groups while building a political system that would exclude all popular groups from electoral power” (page 36).

Leistenschneider 1980:  “Don Jorge Meléndez (salvadoreño) gobernó como presidente de la república:  1o marzo de 1919 al 1o marzo de 1923…(R)ecibió la Presidencia de la República de su cuñado el Dr. Alfonso Quiñónez Molina…; como Vice-Presidente, quedó el Dr. Quiñónez” (page 175).  Jorge is the brother of president Carlos Meléndez, their sister is married to Alfonso Quiñónez (page 175).

Soto Gómez 2005:  “Su abuelo Norberto Ramírez fue Presidente de El Salvador en 1840, y su padre Rafael fue Diputado y Alcalde de San Salvador” (page 171).  “La administración de don Jorge Meléndez fue agitada y conflictiva, manteniendo el estado de sitio casi permanente por las manifestaciones populares y sublevaciones que se repitieron en varios lugares del país por los Partidos opositores PPP y el Constitucional” (page 172).

April

Leistenschneider 1980:  “Terremoto de abril de 1919” (page 175).

June

Leistenschneider 1980:  “En junio de 1919, la organización de la Escuela de Ingenieros, anexa a la Escuela Politécnica Militar” (page 175).

September

Bedford 1991:  “By September 1919, both the economy and the political situation were deteriorating in El Salvador…On the political front, Araujo had grown hostile to the Melendez government after being robbed of his victory at the polls.  He therefore went abroad to organize a coup d’etat.  Compounding these problems, the Salvadoran elite were growing increasingly divided” (page 150).

December

Ching 1997:  Discusses the municipal election in Chalchuapa in 1919 (page 76).

1920

Anderson 1981:  “El Salvador called a meeting in 1920 to work on the question of unity.  Nicaragua…did not participate; but the remaining four states signed agreements” (page 8).

Gould 2008:  “The expansion of the country’s population during the early twentieth century compounded the effects of the closing rural frontier.  The rate of demographic expansion had been increasing since the late nineteenth century, and by 1920 El Salvador had nearly two and a half times as many people as in 1880, when around half of the country’s land was uncultivated” (page 17).

Lauria-Santiago 2004:  “Until at least the 1920s, Asunción [Izalco] continued to elect an Indian ‘alcalde’ (mayor) and ‘regidores’ (council members) and identify itself as a ‘comunidad’ (community).  Yet their position within the larger political economy of the region had changed drastically, and within their own municipality they were now merely a minority group” (page 38).

Wilson 1969:  “The administrative elite of El Salvador before the 1920’s included the ranking members of the civil government and about 50 generals and colonels.  Many of the members of the National Assembly and the diplomatic corps were from the sector of the landed class whose income from coffee was limited…Before 1920 lingering political rivalries prevented the members of the administrative group from consolidating the support of any particular economic interest and further impeded the emergence of a clearly-defined national elite” (page 62).  “The politics of the elite remained personalist but discreetly restrained during the economic prosperity of the 1920’s.  Since ‘continuismo,’ entrenched administrative and political control, protected the interests of the major coffee growers, and organized movements posed no immediate threat to the elites’ position, the growers assumed no distinct political posture” (page 138).

Wood 2000:  “By the 1920s, El Salvador’s socioeconomic elite had coalesced into an oligarchy that would largely control the country’s economy until the reforms of 1980.  The ‘magic square’ of coffee production, processing, exporting, and finance permitted the oligarchy to dominate the economy until the civil war” (page 228).

March

Bedford 1991:  “By March 1920 Arturo Araujo had successfully organized his paramilitary movement.  His arrest was ordered by Melendez, but the two hundred National Guardsmen stationed at Araujo’s home allowed him to slip away” (page 151).

December:  municipal election

Ching 1997:  “When local political factions outside the organizational realm of the PND refused to desist with their desire to gain municipal office, Meléndez and Quiñónez turned to coercion, which in some instances meant the military” (page 256).  Describes their intervention in the 1920 municipal elections in the departments of San Miguel and Chalatenango (pages 256-257).

1921

Cardenal Izquierdo 2002:  “(D)urante esta época el capital extranjero cambió de origen:  el capital británico cedió paso al norteamericano.  En 1921 el gobierno de Jorge Meléndez pidió al gobierno de Estado Unidos la financiación de una parte de su deuda…El cambio de influencia…no sólo se reflejó en el origen del capital, sino también en el intercambio comercial…El desplazamiento del mercado y del capital europeos por el norteamericano consolidó el ascenso de la hegemonía norteamericana en el área” (page 19).

Ching 1997:  “(I)n 1921 [1920?] Meléndez and Quiñónez…changed the term of municipal officeholding to two years” (pages 265 and 277).

White 1973:  “(I)n 1921 something unprecedented happened:  a demonstration by market women in San Salvador was fired upon by troops with machine guns and a number were killed.  The women…were demonstrating in favour of the opposition leader Miguel Tomás Molina...The National Guard (‘Guardia Nacional,’ modelled on the Spanish ‘Guardia Civil’), formed by Araujo in 1912 to combat crime in the countryside, came increasingly to be used as an agent of repression against the proletarian agitators, wherever they went outside the largest cities” (page 94).

January

Anderson 1981:  “The Pact of Central American Union was signed on 19 January 1921.  But it was the same old story; the pact was never ratified, and a coup in Guatemala put an end to any hopes that it might be” (page 8).

December

Ching 1997:  Mentions municipal elections in 1921 (pages 265-266).

1922

Castro Morán 2005:  “En los comicios presidenciales de 1922-1923, la oposición popular, así como algunos estudiantes universitarios…, se agruparon alrededor del Partido Constitucional o Partido Azul que postulaba como candidato a la Presidencia de la República al Dr. Miguel Tomás Molina, quien había ganado mucho prestigio en el régimen del Dr. Manuel Enrique Araujo, desempeñando el cargo de Ministro del Interior.  El candidato presidencial oficialista impuesto por la Liga Roja, fue el Dr. Alfonso Quiñónez Molina…(L)a campaña electoral presentó dos frentes bien definidos:  los estudiantes, obreros, maestros, empleados y comerciantes apoyando al Dr. Molina, y las masas campesinas que fueron agitadas intensamente, con el Dr. Quiñónez” (page 107).

Ching 1997:  “In 1922 two military coups broke out against the Meléndez government” (page 263).  “The Liga Roja was particularly active in 1922 during Quiñónez’ run for the Presidency against Miguel Molina” (page 266).

February

Leistenschneider 1980:  “En febrero de 1922 hubo la sublevación de la Escuela Politécnica Militar” (page 176).

López, Eugenia 2000a:  “En febrero de 1922 los zapateros iniciaron una huelga, éste sería el mayor movimiento huelguista registrado en el país” (page 315).

Soto Gómez 2005:  “En febrero de 1922 los cadetes de la Escuela Politécnica en El Piñalito encabezaron una revuelta que incluyó soldados de Caballería, Policías y Guardias.  Luego de controlada atrozmente se clausuró para siempre el establecimiento” (page 172).

May

Bedford 1991:  “On May 22, 1922 [the Salvadoran army] again staged a rebellion in an effort to discredit the Melendez government” (page 178).

October

López, Eugenia 2000a:  “A finales de octubre de 1922 se desarrollaba la campaña electoral para hacer uso del sufragio en la elección presidencial para el periodo de 1923 a 1927 y la elección de los representantes en la Asamblea Legislativa.  El candidato por el Partido Nacional Democrático volvía a ser el doctor Alfonso Quiñónez Molina” (page 316).  “Se reorganizaban las Ligas Rojas por todo el país, se estructuraban con un jefe, quien a su vez tenía jefes de barrios y jefes cantonales, y éstos eran quienes se encargaban de afiliar a los vecinos de los barrios.  De esa manera se organizaron las Ligas del departamento de Sonsonate, muchas de ellas eran indígenas, como las creadas en Izalco, que fueron dos, una de ellas tenía como jefe a Feliciano Ama” (page 317).

November

Cardenal 2001:  “Durante las elecciones siguientes la jerarquía eclesiástica se dedicó a orar para que saliera electo el mejor candidato.  Por medio de edicto del 19 de noviembre de 1922 el arzobispo ordenó los días 6, 7, y 8 de diciembre en todos los templos y oratorios públicos rezar…para que saliera electo el presidente y vicepresidente que gobernase el país conforme a los principios de la justicia.  Pérez dijo no tener preferencias por ninguno de los dos candidatos, Alfonso Quiñónez y Miguel Tomás Molina.  Ambos le dieron suficientes garantías de que favorecerían en todo a las autoridades eclesiásticas y el culto” (pages 251-252). 

December

Cáceres Prendes 1995:  “(L)as mujeres salvadoreñas estaban teniendo una muy activa presencia a través de los comités femeninos de diversos partidos políticos.  Que estos comités distaban de ser elementos ‘decorativos’ lo atestigua la célebre masacre de partidarias del Partido Constitucional del Dr. Miguel Tomás Molina en 1922” (pages 271-272).

Castro Morán 2005:  “Después de este sangriento suceso…se impuso el terror.  El Ejército fue puesto en estado de emergencia en todo el país” (page 108).

Ching 1997:  “(T)here were no municipal elections December 1922 around which [presidential candidate] Molina could mobilize support” (page 277).  “Meléndez and Quiñónez tolerated Molina’s campaign until December 25th, the day on which Molina organized a political rally in downtown San Salvador.  What took place that afternoon came to be known as the Christmas Day Massacre…More than 100 persons were hospitalized during the crackdown, and dozens were said to have been killed” (page 278).

Dunkerley 1985:  “In 1922 the ‘Liga Roja’ and the National Guard killed a large number of people, the majority of them women market sellers” (page 20).

Gould 2008:  “A judicial ruling that allowed Alfonso Quiñónez to run again for office despite having served as acting president ignited a protest movement led by students, artisans, and workers.  That movement soon merged with the electoral campaign of Tomás Molina, gathering momentum in December 1922” (page 37).

Leistenschneider 1980:  “Manifestación disuelta a balazos por pelotones de Caballería, Guardias y Policias, resultando de esto muchos muertos y heridos, el 25 de diciembre de 1922.  (Motivó dos Partidos Políticos:  El Constitucional, postulaba al Dr. Alfonso Quiñónez Molina, y el Nacional Democrático que postulaba al Dr. Miguel Tomás Molina.  La manifestación era del Partido Nacional Democrático)” (page 176).

Soto Gómez 2005:  “(L)a [alzada] más sangrienta…se dio el 25 de diciembre de 1922, cuando los seguidores del Doctor Miguel Tomás Medina, Candidato a Presidente por el Partido Constitucional y ex Ministro de Gobernación, fueron masacrados en una manifestación que dejó muchos muertos y heridos” (page 172).

1923

Anderson 1971:  “(I)n 1923, [the Liga Roja] was used to propel brother-in-law Quiñónez Molina  personally into office.  By this time the politicos had begun to feel that the league had served its purposes anyway...There was, after all, always the danger that this curious example of Salvadorean Zubatovism, in which the state became the leader of the revolution, might deviate from its projected course when the agricultural workers who made up the bulk of the organization’s membership discovered there was nothing for them in cooperation and decided to turn on their masters.  It is hardly surprising then that Quiñónez Molina, safely in office, harassed the officials of the league, broke up its meetings, and eventually smashed its organization” (page 23).

Ching 1997:  “Alfonso Quiñónez disbanded the Liga Roja in 1923 after he successfully gained the Presidency in the election of January 1923” (page 272). 

Gould 2008:  Arturo “Araujo returned from exile in 1923, and throughout the 1920s he opposed the Melendez-Quiñónez group.  During these years the ‘Araujistas’ were identified as enemies of the National Guard because of its role as the arbiter of political control at the local level” (page 58).

Holden 2004:  “When the Ligas began to challenge the power of the official repressive bodies of the state, attacking and killing soldiers in the course of punishing the opposition, they began to threaten government control and the state’s long-term project of eliminating Indian village autonomy.  They were disbanded by Pres. Alfonso Quiñónez Molina five years after their founding” (page 60).

López, Eugenia 2000a:  “Se daba forma al sistema de partidos, se creó el Partido Civil Republicano, que daba el apoyo al candidato oficial; el Partido Constitucional que llevaba como candidato al doctor Molina; y el Partido Palomista lleva de candidato a Miguel García Palomo, Ministro de Hacienda y Crédito Público” (page 317).

López, Carlos Gregorio 2000a:  Las “acciones [de las Ligas Rojas] contribuían a aumentar el desprestigio de la ‘dinastía,’ por lo que Quiñónez decidió disolverlas en 1923, después de haberse servido de ellas para llegar a la presidencia…Que las Ligas Rojas hayan sido disueltas no significa que sus militantes hubieran renunciado a la lucha política; más bien optaron por otros medios.  Reconocidos líderes indígenas que fueron miembros de las Ligas, estuvieron involucrados posteriormente en el trabajo de la Federación Regional de Trabajadores de El Salvador (FRTS) y participaron en el levantamiento de 1932” (page 377).

January 5

Ching 1997:  “On January 5th Molina issued a statement from exile telling his supporters to boycott the election” (page 280).

January:  presidential election (Quiñónez / PND)

Castro Morán 2005:  “Llegado el día de las ‘elecciones’ el fraude y la imposición se combinaron para otorgar el triunfo al candidato oficial, Dr. Quiñónez.  Un sentimiento de impotencia y cólera reprimida invadió a los partidarios del Dr. Molina” (page 109).

Ching 1997:  “Alfonso Quiñónez won the election of January 1923 as the candidate of the PND to succeed Jorge Meléndez for the term 1923-1927” (page 274).  “Quiñónez’ opponent in the election was Miguel Tomás Molina, a lawyer, a landowner, the one-time Minister of Government under Meléndez, and a cousin of Quiñónez himself” (page 275).  “Quiñónez…won the election unanimously, receiving a reported 178,000 votes.  Pio Romero Bosque was elected Vice President and was also chosen as Minister of War” (page 280).

Soto Gómez 2005:  “Meléndez apoyaba a su cuñado Alfonso Quiñónez Molina, Candidato que ganó la Presidencia postulado por el gobernante Partido PND” (page 172).

March

González, Luis Armando 1999:  Quiñónez Molina “gobernó durante los años de mayor auge cafetalero…(A)unque pretendió recuperar el proyecto liberal, se entrampó en las redes impuestas por los intereses vinculados al café” (page 587).

Leistenschneider 1980:  Alfonso Quiñónez gobernó “como presidente de la república:  1o marzo de 1923 al 1o de marzo de 1927” (page 179).

Soto Gómez 2005:  “Fue Presidente en tres ocasiones diferentes, acomodando sus períodos con los hermanos Carlos y Jorge Meléndez…Su propio período, ganado como candidato del Partido Nacional Democrático (Liga Roja), lo inició el 1 de marzo de 1923, recibiendo el mando de don Jorge Meléndez” (page 173). 

Wilson 1969:  Meléndez “returned the presidency to Quiñónez for the term lasting from 1923 to 1927” (page 104).

December:  municipal election

Alvarenga Venutolo 1996: “(L)os indigenas habían sido buenos aliados de los Meléndez Quiñónez...(A) partir de la disolución de las Ligas Rojas, se incrementó la presión ladina sobre los focos de poder local...(E)sta medida coincidió con un debilitamiento de los lazos de alianza entre los indígenas y el Gobierno” (page 308).  Author describes efforts of Indian community of Nahuizalco to get their mayoral candidate elected over the ladino candidate.

Ching 1997:  “The stakes of the 1923 election were high, for the regime of Alfonso Quiñónez had changed the tenure of municipal office to four years” (page 135).  “(I)n 1923, [Quiñónez] had the term of municipal office extended to three years for half of the municipal council, the other half would be replaced in an election after two years” (page 280).

1924

Cardenal Izquierdo 2002:  “El más importante sindicato que existió durante estos años fue la Federación Regional de los Trabajadores Salvadoreños (FRTS), que nació en 1924 y llegó a reunir hasta 80.000 trabajadores” (page 21).

Ching 1998:  “(B)y 1924 enough unions had come into existence that they could unite to form the FRTS [Federación Regional de Trabajadores Salvadoreños].  From its base in San Salvador, the FRTS coordinated union activity and organized new unions” (page 210).

Holden 2004:  “By 1924 there were one thousand [National] Guardsmen and ninety-six officers, controlled by the central government and free to ignore the interests of local ‘alcaldes’ and ‘gobernadores’” (page 62).

1925

Anderson 1981:  “A small, clandestine communist party first appeared in 1925” (page 20).

Ching 1997:  Mentions the municipal elections of 1925 (pages 280 and 282).

Elam 1968:  “In 1925, with the assistance of Mexican and Guatemalan agents, the first organized Communist group was established in San Salvador” (page 36).

1926

Ching 1997:  “Quiñónez…worked toward having a new Constitution written that would allow for re-election.  In July and August 1926 he called for the formation of ‘cabildos abiertos,’ town-hall meetings in which the general population theoretically discussed and then voted upon proposed changes to the Constitution.  But only a handful of municipalities actually held the cabildos, because Quiñónez quickly abandoned his attempt at re-election” (pages 285-286).

López, Carlos Gregorio 2000a:  “(C)uando se acercaban las elecciones presidenciales, Quiñónez Molina…dejó entrever su intención de reelegirse, pero enfrentaba el obstáculo de que la constitución de 1886 no permitía la reelección.  Para llanar ese inconveniente promovió por medio de sus allegados iniciativas para convocar a una Asamblea Nacional Constituyente que reformaría la Constitución a fin de hacer posible su reelección…A pesar de que la propuesta pasó a consideración de la Asamblea Legislativa la iniciativa no prosperó, principalmente por falta de tiempo.  Ante esa situación se optó por presentar la candidatura del Dr. Pío Romero Bosque, quien había sido un cercano colaborador de la ‘dinastía.’  Desde 1919 estuvo a cargo del importante Ministerio de Guerra” (page 380).

April

Cardenal 2001:  “El arzobispo Pérez murió el 17 de abril de 1926.  Quiñónez decretó duelo oficial…Dos días después el cabildo eligió al obispo auxiliar [José Alfonso] Belloso, vicario capitular…El gobierno y algunos miembros del clero comenzaron a trabajar las posibles candidaturas para el arzobispado” (pages 270-271).

1927

Ching 2004:  “For thirteen years between 1913 and 1927, three members of [the Meléndez-Quiñónez] family controlled the presidency and centralized patronage.  They were able to do so largely because of steady economic growth and an accompanying increase in state power.  Political advancement now meant rising within the ranks of the solitary network rather than trying to overthrow it from without” (page 58).

López, Eugenia 2000a:  “Durante los gobiernos de los hermanos Meléndez y su cuñado Alfonso Quiñónez, El Salvador se había convertido en el principal exportador de café de toda la región centroamericana” (page 321).

January:  presidential election (Romero Bosque / PND)

Ching 1997:  “Nobody stepped forward to challenge Romero [vice-president and minister of war], and he won the election of January 1926 by unanimity…Romero broke totally with the old ways and initiated a series of political reforms designed to foster genuine democracy” (page 286).

Leistenschneider 1980:  Romero Bosque “gana las elecciones como Candidato del Partido Nacional Democrático…Vice-Presidente Ingeniero Gustavo Vides” (page 184).

López, Carlos Gregorio 2000a:  “Romero Bosque fue el único candidato y obviamente contó con el apoyo del oficial Partido Nacional Democrático.  A diferencia de los comicios anteriores, en los que hubo mucha participación, esta vez la población se mantuvo más bien apática” (pages 380-381).

Soto Gómez 2005:  Quiñónez Molina “entronizó su gobierno apoyado en una organización política llamada Liga Roja, que coordinaba las acciones políticas y controlaba los adversarios.  Esta Liga propuso a su Vicepresidente Doctor Pío Romero Bosque como candidato a la sucesión presidencial y resultó electo” (page 174).

Wilson 1969:  “Pío Romero Bosque…came to office in 1927 in an uncontested election and there was little expectation of change” (page 104).

January 27

Leistenschneider 1980:  “Por Decreto del Poder Ejecutivo emitido el 26 de enero de 1927, se restableció con el nombre de Escuela Militar, la extinguida Escuela Politécnica” (page 184).

March

Baloyra 1982:  “A social conservative, Romero broke with the Meléndez-Quiñónez clan [and]  forced his predecessor into exile” (page 8).

Cardenal Izquierdo 2002:  “Al nombrarlo su sucesor, Quiñónez esperaba que éste continuara su política, pero también tenía el secreto anhelo de seguir controlando el gobierno desde la sombra…Romero Bosque no sólo no se prestó a su control, sino que con su política desafió los intereses de la elite cafetalera…Lo primero que Romero Bosque hizo cuando llegó al gobierno fue proclamar elecciones libres, las primeras y únicas elecciones libres que se celebraron en el país antes de 1979.  Para esas elecciones se permitió competir a todas las tendencias políticas, con excepción de aquellas cuyo objetivo era destruir el sistema político” (page 22).

Ching 2004:  “Over the next four years (1927-1931), President Pío Romero Bosque subjected the patronage system to a relentless attack.  He and a coterie of loyal bureaucrats promoted democratic reforms in a vigorous campaign...Their goal was nothing less than changing elections from objects of patronage to expressions of popular will.  Despite the enormity of this task, they made impressive strides” (page 58).

Elam 1968:  “Faithful to his inaugural pledge, the new President unmuzzled the press, raised the general state of siege, restored constitutional rights, and granted the University autonomy.  He declared amnesty, and most political exiles of the previous six administrations returned” (page 12).

González, Luis Armando 1999:  Romero Bosque “se preocupó por buscar un respaldo social en las clases mayoritarias.  Pese a estar vinculado a los intereses cafetaleros, Romero Bosque intento democratizar el sistema político…La apertura de Romero Bosque rindió frutos en la creación de una serie de partidos politicos independientes” (page 587).

Gould 2008:  “Supported by an incipient labor movement and by the urban middle classes, Romero Bosque used his political capital to institute fundamental reforms that democratized the electoral system at the national and local levels and further stimulated the growth of the urban labor movement and social democratic politics” (page 32).

Leistenschneider 1980:  “Doctor Pío Romero Bosque (salvadoreño) gobernó como presidente:  1o de marzo de 1927 al 28 de febrero de 1931” (page 183).

López, Carlos Gregorio 2000a:  “(A) los pocos días Romero Bosque dio indicios de que su gestión rompería con la tradición de la ‘dinastía’” (page 381).

Marroquín 1977:  “En contraste con su antecesor, el Dr. Romero Bosque realizó un gobierno de tipo paternalista con amplia concesión de libertades democráticas; aunque, como todos los gobiernos anteriores era el representante de la oligarquía semifeudal y su obra administrativa y financiera se limitó a mantener el marco semi-colonial y semi-feudal tradicional.  Al conceder amplias libertades, el régimen permitió la formación de los primeros grupos sindicales con orientación francamente revolucionaria de lucha de clases, por oposición a las sociedades artensanales que predominaban en El Salvador desde el siglo pasado” (page 143).

Soto Gómez 2005:  Romero Bosque “fue un fiel colaborador de sus antecesores presidentes, los Meléndez y el Doctor Alfonso Quiñónez Molina quienes aseguraron sus privilegios en la continuidad de la liga roja y el Partido Nacional Democrático (PND)” (page 175).

Webre 1979: “Oligarchic domination of Salvadoran politics began to weaken during the administration of Quiñónez’s chosen successor, lawyer Pio Romero Bosque…Buoyed by the remarkable prosperity of the late 1920s, he summoned the courage to break with the elements that had installed him.  No more receptive to innovation in social or economic matters than his predecessors, Romero Bosque turned his attention to political reform” (page 5).

White 1973:  “At the end of his term of office in 1927, Alfonso Quiñónez installed in the Presidency his friend and fellow-townsman…Pío Romero Bosque.  Quiñónez, like Regalado, Escalón, and the Meléndez brothers, was a member of the planter élite; Pío Romero Bosque was his inferior in wealth and social position, and he expected to be able to control him.  In this he was mistaken” (pages 94-95).

April-May

Ching 1997:  “(I)n April and May of 1927, the Romero government tried to revise the Constitution…One of the proposed amendments called for the secret vote” (page 326).

May

López, Carlos Gregorio 2000a:  “Para mayo de 1927 se había levantado el estado de sitio, vigente desde hacía varios años, a la vez que se daba una amplia libertad de prensa.  Estas medidas fueron muy bien recibidas por la población hastiada del ambiente represivo en que había vivio hasta entonces.  Este contexto favoreció a las organizaciones populares, especialmente la FRTS, la Liga Antiimperialista y las organizaciones estudiantiles” (page 381).  “Si bien es cierto que se otorgó libertad de prensa y se levantó el estado de sitio, eso no significó una irrestricta libertad y democratización.  La represión en el campo fue muy fuerte, pues allí estaban los principales intereses económicos de la clase dominante” (page 383).

June

Gould 2008:  “In June 1927 [Romero Bosque’s] newly formed Partido Civista’s break with the powerful and well-established PND partially hinged upon its ability to recruit popular support in the cities” (page 42).

August

Gould 2008:  “By August this new party [Partido Civista] claimed to have organized two hundred committees and enrolled 150,000 supporters” (page 42).

September

Gould 2008:  “In September a convention attended by five thousand supporters from throughout the country formally inaugurated the Partido Civista” (page 42).

December 6

Ching 1997:  “In December 1927, [Quiñónez] and Jorge Meléndez organized a coup against the Romero government” (page 308).  The failed coup “brought the Meléndez-Quiñónez influence to a decided end, and left Romero unquestionably in charge of the government” (page 311).

Gould 2008:  “The coup attempt failed, and the quick military trials and executions of its leaders in the army, National Guard, and police sent a clear signal that Romero Bosque would not compromise in his reform efforts” (page 43).

Leistenschneider 1980:  “El 6 de Diciembre de 1927 hubo una asonada militar; fueron fusilados el Coronel Aberle y el Mayor Noguera” (page 185).

López, Carlos Gregorio 2000a:  “(N)o todos los sectores estaban contentos con la nueva administración.  En diciembre de 1927 Romero Bosque tuvo que enfrentar un intento de golpe de Estado dirigido por el expresidente Jorge Meléndez con el apoyo de algunos militares…Al final Meléndez logró llegar a Honduras y posteriormente se radicó en Costa Rica” (page 381).

Paige 1997:  Romero Bosque “proved to be a surprisingly independent choice, even crushing a revolt organized by Jorge Meléndez in December 1927, when the dynasty found they could no longer control him.  [He] initiated the first, and some would argue the last, era of genuine democracy in the country’s history” (page 110).

December: municipal election

Alvarenga Venutolo 1996: “En las elecciones de 1927 los indios de Nahuizalco recuperaron el poder.  Pedro Mauricio, un líder indígena que pertenecía al partido oficial, fue electo alcalde” (page 310). 

Ching 1997:  “With the arrival of Pío Romero Bosque to the Presidency in 1927, the Indians [of Nahuizalco] had an opportunity to regain control of the municipal council once and for all, because the Romero government emphasized democratic procedures, and by virtue of their overwhelming numbers, the Indians should have had a great advantage.  Indeed, the Indians won the municipal election of December 1927.  But the [ladino] clique did not surrender power easily [and] contended that the victor, Pedro Mendoza, was illiterate and demanded that his election be annulled, for illiteracy precluded a person from holding public office” (page 136).  The government ruled in the ladinos’ favor, and “Nahuizalco became a hotbed of ethnically-based, political conflict.  Whichever group was in power, Indians or ladinos, the other barraged the national government with a continual string of denunciations and nullification requests” (page 137).  “The first experiment:  the municipal elections of December 1927” (pages 312-322).  “From the elections of 1927 we have a complete list of the municipal officials from San Vicente Department, and a list of just the Alcaldes in Ahuachapán Department” (page 323).

Gould 2008:  “Romero Bosque’s first concrete step aimed to liberalize the municipal elections scheduled for December 1927.  The central government pressured local officials to resolve political disputes by conciliating factions and attempting to reach a consensus (and single slates), while at the same time encouraging elections free of interference from public officials…With Romero Bosque firmly in power, the old PND was in crisis at the national level, but its local supporters and clients attempted to keep supporters of the Partido Civista and Romero Bosque from office in the municipal elections of December 1927.  The results of those elections were ambiguous, as many PND militants joined the Romero Bosque forces in opportunistic fashion”  (page 43).  Discusses the December 1927 municipal election in Nahuizalco (page 48).

1928

Ching 1997:  “(I)n 1928 Romero returned the duration of municipal officeholding to one year” (pages 324-325).  “In 1928, the Romero government also initiated a new process of electoral investigation.  Instead of waiting until after the election, the Ministry of Government would now conduct investigations prior to the election in hopes of addressing problems pre-emptively” (page 328).

January:  congressional election

Ching 1997:  “There actually was one election that took place between 1927 and 1929; the deputy elections of January 1928.  The archives in El Salvador contain very little information on this election” (page 340). 

March

Cardenal 2001:  “Por disposición de la Santa Sede, el 19 de marzo de 1928 José Alfonso Belloso tomó posesión del arzobispado de San Salvador” (page 271). 

August

Cardenal 2001:  “Fruto de las conferencias…[de agosto de 1928] fue la organización de la Acción Social Católica salvadoreña a nivel nacional” (page 286).

1929

Dunkerley 1985:  “(T)he PCS grew very quickly and within 18 months of its formation had come to the forefront of national political struggle.  The backdrop to these developments was the virtual collapse of the economy following the crash of 1929.  The price of coffee, which accounted for 85 per cent of exports, fell 45 per cent in six months” (page 22).

Marroquín 1977: “En 1929 se inició el último año del Gobierno del Dr. Pío Romero Bosque.  Era un año de crisis política porque tenían que celebrarse elecciones presidenciales: justamente, a fines de dicho año…se inicia la crisis económica; esta coincidencia, en la que la crisis económica se enlaza con la crisis política, tuvo consecuencias catastróficas…Todavía era la época en que no existían partidos políticos permanentes pues…los llamados partidos tradicionales, (liberal y conservador) habían desaparecido; al aproximarse el período electoral, se improvisaban partidos políticos alrededor de una personalidada destacada, el futuro candidato—quien formulaba un programa de gobierno y se lanzaba a una gran campaña nacional de propaganda” (page 147).  “Los grandes latifundistas y caficultores, ayudaban económicamente al candidato de sus simpatías y su poderío financiero, aseguraba casi siempre el triunfo del candidato de sus preferencias” (page 148). 

Paige 1997:  “(T)he most densely settled areas were also prime coffee land, so that coffee directly displaced subsistence cultivators…Much of the western coffee zone had also been an area of strong indigenous communities…The coffee area expanded by more than 50 percent in the 1920s, so that by 1929 there were many displaced peasants with vivid memories of the loss of traditional access to community lands” (page 106). 

Wade 2003:  “The [ASCAFE], the organization of coffee growers, was formed in 1929 to consolidate elite interests” (page 30).

Webre 1979:  “(T)he rapid decline in world coffee prices beginning in 1929 badly undercut [Romero Bosque’s] position…Romero Bosque had no solution for the economic crisis that beset El Salvador and he vacillated uneasily between concession and repression in his approach to the political troubles it generated” (page 5).

January:  congressional election

Ching 1997:  Mentions election for deputies in January 1929 (page 340).

March

Ching 1998:  “Sometime around 1928 a small radical faction emerged within the ranks of the FRTS.  It consisted of a few young members who made their debut in March 1929 at the Fifth Annual Congress by establishing a subcommittee called the…Congreso Obrero y Campesino” (page 211).

May

Lindo-Fuentes 2007:  “By the time of the [FRTS’s] Fifth Annual Congress in May 1929, a group of radical members formed a subcommittee within the FRTS called the Congress of Workers and Peasants…The congress, which became the kernel of the Communist Party in El Salvador, sought to suppress factionalism from the outset…Before the end of the year, numerous members had been accused of ideological lapses, and many were expelled, including at least two members of the original executive council” (page 188).

July

Elam 1968:  “Not until 1929…did labor leaders consider their movement anything but urban, and Communist labor propaganda was confined to San Salvador and other population centers.  But after a congress held in the capital in mid-July of that year, labor’s platform was redirected to include rural workers” (page 36).

November

Ching 1998:  “A police crackdown in November 1929 set the stage for a final showdown between the radicals and the reformers in the FRTS.  The incident occurred in the city of Santa Tecla…during an anti-imperialist demonstration organized by the Anti-Imperialist League.  The FRTS was invited to participate in the march, but the delegation that arrived apparently was dominated by members of the Congress of Workers and Peasants…It was at this point that the radicals decided to wrest control of the union.  They set their sights on the forthcoming election for a new executive council to be held in February 1930 at the VI Annual Congress.  It was at this crucial moment that the Comintern decided to play a more active role in El Salvador” (page 213).  A Comintern agent, Jorge Fernández Anaya [known as Anaya], “became the de facto leader of the radical faction and held an equally important position in the PCS after its formation” (page 214).

December

Anderson 1981:  “(T)he growers formed the Asociación Cafetalera, in December 1929, to look after their interests in the market.  Unfortunately, this association was dominated by the great growers:  the 350-odd growers out of 3,400 who owned 125 acres or more of coffee land.  The result was that the small growers were forced out of business, ruined by the mighty who then bought up their lands” (page 19).

Cardenal 2001:  “En 1929 los cafetaleros fundaron la Asociación Cafetalera de El Salvador para defender y representar organizadamente sus propios intereses.  La oligarquía cafetalera manipuló al país para asegurar la estabilidad política y el orden económico existente” (page 44).

Cardenal Izquierdo 2002:  “En 1929, los principales productores de café constituyeron la Sociedad de Defensa del Café (la que después se constituiría como la Asociación Salvadoreña de Café) con el propósito de asegurarse el control de la producción y la exportación del café sin interferencia del gobierno” (page 22).

Elam 1968:  “In late December of 1929, leaders of the [Regional Federation of Salvadoran Workers] established the first national Communist party.  Though the labor and Communist organizations appeared to act independently after 1929, their leadership was in fact provided by the same men” (page 37).

Gould 2008:  “The labor movement suffered a major reversal in December 1929, but one that to some extent energized the movement and probably helped the left to consolidate its control.  In a nationally famous case, on La Presa, a large plantation in Coatepeque, the National Guard evicted 345 colono families in the middle of a storm, claiming that the union had called for expropriation and subsequently distributing the land to the colonos.  In reality the union had threatened a strike in demand of higher wages and an end to payments for water.  But the élite family that owned the hacienda had the ear of the president of the Republic” (page 70).

December:  municipal election

Ching 1997:  The Indians of Nahuizalco “failed to regain control of the municipal government after 1927, except for one instance in the election of December 1929” (page 137).  Describes the election and its nullification (pages 137-138).  “Starting with the election of December 1929, [Romero] ordered his Departmental Governors and Comandantes to assemble lists of the registered candidates in each municipality, and then one week prior to the election, gather these candidates to decide upon the Directorio” (page 341).  “From the municipal elections of December 1929 we have a complete record of the officials elected in Ahuachapán Department” (page 346).

Ching 1998:  “Following the election of December 1929 [in Izalco], Feliciano Ama, a leader of one of Izalco’s two Indian communities, sent the government a nullification request accusing the recently-victorious ladino candidates of electoral improprieties.  The government rejected the request” (page 237). 

Gould 2008:  “Élite control over municipal politics in Juayúa was such that in the municipal elections of 1929 two allies, members of the élite, confronted each other” (page 45).  Discusses the December 1929 municipal election in Izalco (pages 46-47).  Discusses the December 1929 municipal election in Nahuizalco (page 48).  “In 1929 [Arturo Araujo] supported a populist candidate in the municipal elections of Armenia, Emeterio Torres, against a candidate supported by the local élite, the ‘gente regularizada’” (page 58).

Wilson 1969:  “The first free elections of the new regime, the selection of municipal officials in 1929, left the urban employees and professional groups with a sense of mastery” (page 197).  Quotes a number of articles discussing the December election (pages 197-198).

1930

Anderson 1971: “Even before the great crash, coffee prices had started downward.  With the start of 1930 this downward trend grew markedly worse and most producers preferred to let the harvest of 1930 rot in the fields...Some 28 percent of the coffee holdings in the country changed hands during the early years of the depression, the small growers generally suffering more than the large” (pages 8-9).

Brockett 1998:  “The situation in the country was desperate; male rural unemployment in 1929 was estimated at 40 percent, and it was still climbing the following year.  Thousands of people were attending ‘popular universities’ presented in the countryside by radical students to encourage peasant organization” (page 130).

Cáceres Prendes 1995:  “Prudencia Ayala, conocida poetisa…en ocasión de las elecciones de 1930 (las que llevarían al poder, efímeramente, a don Arturo Araujo), no sólo exigió inscribirse como ciudadana y votar, sino que llevó incluso a pretender lanzar su candidatura a la Presidencia.  Los periódicos de la época son testigos de la estupefacción con que esta demanda fue recibida por los integrantes de una sociedad claramente patriarcal.  Este asombro se mezcló con el pánico de comprobar que la solicitud podría tener un efectivo asidero legal por el hecho de que la Constitución vigente, la de 1886, no se había ciudado de negar explícitamente los derechos políticos a la mujer…Por su lado, la Ley Electoral de la época tampoco hacía distinciones de ningún tipo, de modo que de hecho la interpretación estaba dependiendo del ‘sobreentendido’ puramente cultural que las mujeres deberían estar excluidas del ejercicio de los derechos políticos” (page 271).  Describes the process followed to establish that Prudencio Ayala did not have the right to vote.

Cardenal 2001:  “En 1930, Belloso confesó su incapacidad para resolver satisfactoriamente el problema presentado por el protestantismo dado el poderoso influjo político-social de los Estados Unidos” (page 281).  “Para Belloso la relación liberalismo-protestantismo-comunismo estaba clara.  Los tres excluían la religión” (page 282).

García Guevara 2007:  “The PCS and labor unions such as the…’Federación Regional de Trabajadores’ [FRTS]…expanded dramatically in 1930, in part because the depression worsened living and working conditions, but many Leftist leaders had already laid the organizational groundwork in the late 1920s” (page 54).

Gould 2008:  “Araujo’s most visible allies were Masferrer and Felipe Recinos, former leader of the FRTS.  Araujismo sometimes shared and at other times vied with the left for the support of workers and campesinos.  At the local level Araujo’s multiclass alliance represented a challenge to the old patronage networks controlled by élites; nationally it led to a reformist political movement unparalleled in Salvadoran history until the 1970s.  The alliance between urban professionals and workers had roots in the decades-old political culture of urban reformism, but its extension into mass rural support that did not rely on patronage networks was unprecedented” (pages 58-59).  “By mid-1930 the FRTS had at least fifteen thousand members, probably doubling its membership during the previous six months” (page 83).  “Although the FRTS had a presence outside the coffee zones, it expanded mostly by organizing coffee workers and colonos on large estates” (page 84).

Johnson 1993:  “Beginning in the 1930s, several events conspired to challenge the Liberal system of oligarchic domination.  First was the economic crisis of the early 1930s that cruelly exposed the narrow foundations of the Liberal system built almost entirely of coffee production and export” (page 93). 

Lindo-Fuentes 2007:  “A variation on the conflict over reformism within the PCS was the emergence of an ideological dispute with its sister organization, the…Socorro Rojo Internacional…and its leader Farabundo Martí.  The SRI was another radical internationalist worker’s organization with headquarters in Moscow.  The Salvadoran branch appears to have been founded shortly after the PCS in 1930.  The SRI operated parallel to and in alliance with the PCS, but it had a distinct bureaucratic organization and a slightly different mission.  Whereas the PCS saw itself as the organizational backbone of the revolution, the SRI had a more moderate, public face” (page 189).  “Anaya and the other leaders of the PCS argued emphatically that El Salvador was not ready for revolution…Martí and other members of the SRI disagreed, believing that conditions in El Salvador were ripe for revolution and that the radical organizations should prepare to move to the offensive” (page 190).

Marroquín 1977:  “(A)parecieron cinco aspirantes al solio presidencial:  uno de los candidatos gozaba del apoyo del gobernante y era considerado el candidato oficial; tres más no tenían mayor arraigo popular; pero el quinto, el Ingeniero Arturo Araujo, millonario terrateniente, gozaba de gran popularidad debido a sus actitudes filantrópicas.  Fundó el Partido Laborista imitando el modelo británico y oportunamente logró ganar el apoyo del Maestro Masferrer” (page 148).

McClintock 1998:  “The post-1929 global depression provoked political crisis in El Salvador…The depression undermined El Salvador’s coffee-growing elite, which had dominated the government since 1870” (page 103).

Tilley 2005:  Feliciano Ama “had been a staunch supporter of 1930 presidential election contender Gomez Zarate; he had headed the ‘Indigenous Committee’ that orchestrated the Indian voting bloc for Zarate in the cantones around Izalco.  After the elections were canceled, however, he abandoned national party politics and withdrew his support from Zarate in favor of the communist alliance” (page 149).

White 1973:  “The name that Araujo gave to the party he founded for the purpose of his candidacy was ‘Partido Laborista Salvadoreño’…Moreover, his candidacy had the strong backing of a well-respected writer and educator, Alberto Masferrer” (page 98).

Wilson 1969:  “There were several indications before the election that radical influences had effectively alienated the masses from the elites.  In addition to the widespread demand for land reform, workers in Acajutla struck against the British-owned railraod and shipping companies…In San Miguel…a mob of several hundred people looted warehouses and homes…Generally public opinion considered these protests fair reactions to unjust conditions” (page 204).  “Arturo Araujo, a wealthy landholder and a perennial aspirant to the presidency, most effectively cultivated the support of the ‘campesinos.’  For a decade he identified with the labor movement and abandoned the candidacy of the liberal politician Enrique Córdoba in order to lead the Laboristas.  Apparently under the influence of several populist organizers who appreciated the possibilities of controlling the votes of the masses, Araujo promised his followers the distribution of land.  His paternalism became a pragmatic use of popular support which upset the existing party alignment of ‘liberals’ and ‘progressives’” (pages 205-206).

February

Ching 1998:  “By the opening of the [FRTS] VI Congress, the radicals had gained the needed votes and swept the reformers out of power…Shortly after the VI Congress, the new leadership began purging suspected reformists” (page 215).

Lindo-Fuentes 2007:  “By virtue of diligent campaigning and effective organizing, Anaya and the radicals won control of the union’s executive council in the VI Congress in February 1930” (page 188).

March

Anderson 1981:  “The guiding genius of the communist movement was Agustín Farabundo Martí, the son of a small coffee planter in the province of La Libertad…He was expelled from the country in February 1920, joined General Augusto César Sandino in his famous, though futile, campaign in Nicaragua, and reappeared in his native land in May of 1930” (page 20).

Ching 1997:  “The members of the Congreso [Obrero y Campesino]…founded the Communist Party of El Salvador (PCS) in March 1930” (page 301).

Ching 1998:  “In March 1930, shortly after their victory at the VI Congress, Anaya and the radicals founded the PCS…The PCS was to be a genuine radical alternative, a revolutionary vanguard, untainted by the bourgeois values, and a fellow combatant in the international war against capitalism.  For the first two months of its existence, the party busily recruited members and assembled the rudimentary elements of an administration” (page 216).

Gould 2008:  “The Partido Comunista Salvadoreño (PCS), founded in March 1930, followed the Comintern Third Phase line, which stated that in effect all non-communist political forces were objectively allied with fascism and imperialism…The PCS counseled abstention in the presidential elections of January 1931.  Yet the rank and file of the labor movement, especially the rural sector, became inspired by the electoral campaign of the Laborista Arturo Araujo” (page 57).

Krauss 1991:  “Spurned by the Nicaraguan nationalist [Augusto César Sandino], Martí returned to El Salvador in 1930 to unify students, workers, and Indian peasants into a single movement.  Farabundo Martí became first secretary of the Communist party of El Salvador.  Farabundo Martí’s call to arms provoked a schism among Salvadoran leaders, pitting a new class of liberal coffeemen like Arturo Araujo against far-right growers and their henchmen in the military” (page 61).

McClintock 1998:  “Founded by Farabundo Martí in 1930, the [PCS] spearheaded the planning for the insurrection of 1932” (page 49).

April

Dunkerley 1985:  “In April 1930 the FRTS, now securely controlled by the PCS, collected 50,000 signatures for a petition demanding a ‘workers’ law’” (page 22).

López, Carlos Gregorio 2000a:  “Romero Bosque rompió con la tradición de sus predecesores de nombrar de antemano su sucesor, quien actuando como’candidato oficial’ se aseguraba el ‘triunfo’ en los comicios.  Una vez que se hizo claro que Romero Bosque no tenía intenciones de nombrar su sucesor, el país se encontró con la paradójica situación de que no existían partidos políticos organizados.  Sin embargo, rápidamente se formaron seis partidos que, en realidad, eran agrupaciones creadas alrededor de un caudillo más o menos reconocido” (page 384).  Lists the parties with their candidates.

Webre 1979:  “As the end of his term approached, [Romero Bosque] made the fateful decision to break completely with the past and deliver upon his campaign promise to allow an open election to choose his successor.  Whether the president acted from a sincere commitment to democracy, concern for his historical reputation, or simply frustration in the face of multiplying problems, a period of deepening social and economic crisis was probably not the most propitious moment for experimentation with so totally unfamiliar a political procedure” (page 5).

Wilson 1969:  “Although Romero Bosque announced in April, 1930, nine months before the election, that he would not endorse any candidate, he nevertheless controlled electoral procedure and might conceivably attempt to impose his successor as was done in the past.  The creation of a party controlling patronage gave the ‘official’ candidate broad-based support.  Complaints about ‘continuismo,’ and the pressure military commanders allegedly applied to their subordinants to vote as directed were evidence of the middle groups’ effectiveness” (page  201).

May

Anderson 1971: “On May Day, 1930, the communists staged an eighty thousand-man parade through the streets of San Salvador.   Official announcement of the party’s foundation had come in March” (page 25).

Castro Morán 2005:  “A principios de mayo de 1930, sólo existían dos candidaturas:  la del Dr. Alberto Gómez Zárate, quien representaba una continuación de las políticas extremadamente burocráticas y centralizadas del ex-Presidente Quiñónez Molina, y la del Dr. Enrique Córdova postulado por el Partido Nacional Evolucionista, como representante de un grupo de terratenientes con tendencias más o menos progresistas, apoyados por los estudiantes universitarios…Poco después surgieron las candidaturas de los Generales Maximiliano Hernández Martínez y Antonio Claramount Lucero…Finalmente apareció de nuevo en la palestra el nombre del Dr. Miguel Tomás Molina,…postulado por el Partido Constitucionalista y a quien se le consideraba como el candidato de los elementos progresistas de la clase media” (page 119).

Ching 1998:  The PCS holds its first Congress in May 1930 (page 216).

Dunkerley 1985:  “The traditional May Day march in San Salvador attracted 80,000 supporters when the city’s population numbered only 90,000” (page 22).

June

Gould 2008:  “In June 1930 the government made its first serious moves against the left” (page 86).  Gives details.

July

Castro Morán 2005:  “Se le mencionó [a Arturo Araujo] por primera vez como posible candidato en mayo de 1930, pero fue hasta julio que decidió abanderar la causa de los trabajadores” (page 120).

Gould 2008:  “Araujo, one of El Salvador’s largest sugar and coffee producers, was quick to respond to Romero Bosque’s opening of the political system” (page 57).  “Unlike most members of the country’s economic élite who preferred to do their political work behind the scenes, Araujo was an active reformer” (page 58).

August

Gould 2008:  “After the anticommunist decree of August 1930 and the accompanying wave of arrests, most [union] meetings were clandestine and held in the countryside” (page 76).  “The pace of governmental action [against the left] picked up dramatically in August…(T)he government announced that it had uncovered a communist conspiracy and arrested scores of militants charged with plotting an insurrection, supposedly scheduled for 6 August…On 12 August, using the insurrectionary threat cited by the departmental governors, the government issued a decree prohibiting any speeches, propaganda, meetings, or rallies ‘of a communist character’ and ordering the arrest of all communist leaders…Using the decree of 12 August as a pretext, the National Guard attacked labor demonstrations in ten towns and cities in western Salvador, carting off to jail hundreds of participants” (page 87).

Paige 1997:  “On August 12 the government responded by prohibiting organizing and workers’ rallies and initiating a reign of ‘white terror’” (page 109).

September

Gould 2008:  “In September 1930 in Nahuizalco, an FRTS stronghold with over seventeen hundred organized seasonal laborers (including five hundred women), union members staged a protest.  The National Guard arrested large numbers of demonstrators and hauled them off to Sonsonate” (page 87).  “By late 1930 rural union members were so incensed at the state repression that ideas of insurrection began to circulate freely among the rank and file and local leadership…The radicalizing impact of rifle butts, bullets, and prison cells conditioned the dialogue between the rank and file and the national leftist leadership.  The rank and file pushed the leadership into more militant and radical ideological and tactical positions” (page 88).

December

Gould 2008:  “By December 1930 Araujo was recognized as the clear leader in the race, with nearly 41,000 registered voters and the only strong party machine.  The closest candidate was Alberto Gómez Zarate, with thirty thousand registered voters and the support of the traditional patronage oficialista networks” (page 60).  “On 21 December 1930 troops shot and killed several demonstrators in Santa Tecla and arrested approximately three hundred.  That shooting marked the virtual halt of leftist activity for the next three months…The dormancy of the revolutionary movement over the next months was also a result of the ascendancy of Arturo Araujo as a reformist presidential candidate…The rise of Araujo’s candidacy, which had a large base of support among the rural poor, combined with governmental intervention to set back the labor movement” (page 90).

December:  municipal election

Ching 1997:  “(T)he municipal elections of 1929…were followed by another round of municipal elections just one year later” (page 324).

García Guevara 2007:  “During the 1930 mayoral elections, ‘Diario de El Salvador’’s editors argued that the country could not have complete liberty because of the uneducated rural masses” (pages 54-55).

1931

Baloyra 1982:  “During his term, Romero was forced to use repressive measures to quell increasing popular and labor discontent over economic conditions, and he wanted to make amends for this at the end of his term by allowing a free election.  However, the high level of popular mobilization, the lack of effective party organizations, the obstructionism of the oligarchy, and the difficult problems confronting the nation made the changes for democratic transition through an electoral solution extremely poor in El Salvador at that time” (page 9).

Cardenal 2001:  “En 1931 el valor [de las exportaciones de café] sobre el valor total de las exportaciones del país alcanzó el 95.5 por ciento” (page 44).

García Guevara 2007:  “By the end of 1931, international observers in the U.S. military and Diplomatic Corps agreed with Salvadoran intellectuals and politicians that conditions were ripe for revolution, and that oligarchs were primarily responsible.  They lamented the miserable wages and working conditions on plantations.  The global economic crisis had exacerbated the Salvadoran masses’ material deprivation and precipitated a social crisis.  The divisions between rich and poor seemed greater than ever…U.S. diplomatic and military officials repeatedly noted the inherent dangers of the ruling elite’s profound resistance to sharing the benefits of prosperity” (pages 58-59). 

Gould 2008:  “(B)y 1931 the incipient coalition between the Partido Laborista, the key reformist political party, and the labor movement had fallen apart, and popular hopes in democratic social change had been dashed on the hard rocks of state repression” (page 32).  “While allowing for free elections, Romero Bosque played an important role in attempting to position the candidates in relation to well-established power centers like the National Assembly, the U.S. embassy, the military, and the banks…Romero Bosque personally favored Enrique Córdova, who he thought would be easier to influence than Gómez Zarate.  Sectors of the coffee élite also supported Córdova.  Viewed as the ‘official candidate,’ Gómez Zarate was the favorite of the remnants of the Melendez-Quiñónez faction and the PND” (page 60).  “Battered by repression, with its leaders in jail, exile, or underground, the PCS was at the nadir of its brief existence, and its call to abstain from the election was simply ignored by the rank and file of labor and the left…Despite what the Comintern and the government might have assumed, the Socorro Rojo in El Salvador did have a political and organizational life of its own…(I)ts relative autonomy allowed the SRI to survive when the National Guard had beaten down the FRTS.  Although communist militants led the SRI, it remained apolitical during the electoral campaign” (page 90).  “Unlike the small PCS group, the SRI did not campaign against Araujo, and unlike the FRTS it did not purge members who supported particular candidates” (page 91).

Ladutke 2004:  Wages for coffee workers in western El Salvador fell sharply during the 1920s…The onset of the Great Depression caused further problems for the nation’s economy.  The landowners decided not to harvest the coffee crops in 1931, thus creating further hardship for the campesinos who relied on this seasonal employment for their livelihood” (page 20).

Lindo-Fuentes 2007:  “During the campaign for the presidential election in January 1931, [Feliciano Ama, the Indian cacique from Izalco] decided to ally with the candidate Alberto Gómez Zárate.  Ironically, Gómez Zárate was considered the most conservative candidate and the one most closely allied to the elites.  But following a longstanding tradition of building patronage networks, Ama promised to deliver Izalco’s votes to Gómez Zárate in exchange for government support for local indigenous issues” (pages 58-59).

López, Carlos Gregorio 2000a:  “Una vez que los espacios políticos fueron abiertos en los primeros dos años de la administración de Romero fue imposible contener el torrente de agitación laboral…Cuando los efectos de la recesión económica se hiceron sentir con más fuerza, el descontento de los sectores populares aumentó, pero la campaña para las elecciones presidenciales en cierto modo distrajo su atención y postergó la crisis, pues muchos trabajadores creyeron que Arturo Araujo podría solucionar sus problemas” (page 384).

Paige 1997:  “Continuing strikes and demonstrations by rural workers in late 1930 and throughout 1931 were met with violent repression by units of the army and National Guard, which opened fire on unarmed workers” (page 109).

Wade 2003:  “By 1931 coffee accounted for 96 percent of El Salvador’s exports” (page 30).  “Income in 1931 was one-half of that in 1928 and the daily wages of plantation workers [were] slashed in half, from 30 to 15 ‘centavos.’  Declining economic conditions resulted in increasing tensions throughout the countryside.  Peasant uprisings, which had been sporadic throughout the countryside for the past century, were becoming potentially more dangerous” (page 31).

Webre 1979:  “In its campaigns against social and economic change, the oligarchy has taken advantage of its ability to co-opt the political elite, drawn increasingly since the 1930s from the military and the professions, through such devices as social preferment and pecuniary largess…

Before 1931, the families that in effect owned the country also governed it.  In those less complex times, the presidential chair was occupied by a succession of representatives of the Dueñas, Regalado, Escalón, and other wealthy families” (page 4).

Wilson 1969:  “Whereas coffee produced 56 per cent of the Republic’s foreign exchange in 1890, and 69 per cent in 1920, it produced 96 per cent in 1931…Failure during the Quiñónez administration to diversify agriculture demonstrated the nation’s total reliance on the export sector to support its growing urban classes” (page 187).  “Although the presidential campaign of 1931 was essentially personalist, each of the candidates drew his support primarily from one or another social class…In addition to the six men considered to be serious aspirants, Prudencia Ayala, a woman from Santa Ana, declared her candidacy” (page 199).  Quotes an article summarizing the “party alignments” (page 199).  “This slate of candidates represented three essential positions” (page 200).  Describes each.  “President Romero Bosque attempted unsuccessfully to reduce the field of six candidates.  He proposed that the parties eliminate the weaker aspirants in a preliminary election or a nominating convention.  The contenders could agree only that one of the two chosen should be an officer, perhaps indicating that neither of the two generals was likely to win.  The confusion caused by this factionalism seemed to assure a plurality for Alberto Gómez Zárate, the representative of the urban groups” (page 203).

January

Ching 1997:  “One week before voting was to begin on the 11th of January, a curious alliance emerged between Arturo Araujo and Maximiliano Hernández Martínez.  Martínez abandoned his campaign and became the vice-presidential candidate under the Labor Party” (page 352).  “The small political party (El Partido Nacional Republicano) that had sponsored [Martínez’s] candidacy in 1930-31 withdrew its support…when he joined with Araujo” (page 367).

Wilson 1969:  “When Maximiliano Hernández Martínez withdrew from the campaign on the eve of the election and joined Araujo as his running mate, the two consolidated the popular position.  Martínez had little support, but his pre-election statements regarding the high cost of living, the need for popular education, and the virtues of the common man clearly identified him with the workers” (page 207).

January 11:  presidential election (Araujo / Labor Party)

Anderson 1981:  “This election was held under the shadow of the Great Depression with left-wing, even communist, agitation growing in the countryside.  The struggle was a complicated one with a number of new political parties springing into existence to take advantage of the unheard-of opportunity for free campaigning.  In the end the man who won was perhaps the candidate least acceptable to the oligarchy—the wealthy, urbane, and progressive Arturo Araujo…He formed his own Labor Party for the election and talked a good deal about social reform.  All of this was watched with growing nervousness by the great coffee planters and the military” (page 22).

Baloyra 1982:  “A field of five candidates contested the election, which was won by Arturo Araujo with a plurality of 101,069 of the 217,405 valid votes” (page 9).

Bland 1992: “In November 1930, five political parties competed in a reasonably free election and the winner, Arturo Araujo, became president the following spring” (page 165).

Browning 1971:  “In 1931, Arturo Araujo was elected President after an election campaign in which there was considerable discussion of agrarian problems.  Araujo promised a programme of land redistribution, and his failure to honour this pledge after his election provoked a series of local outbreaks of violence in 1931” (page 272).

Caldera T. 1983:  “En 1930 apareció en el escenario político el Ing. Arturo Araujo hombre educado en Inglaterra, admirador del partido laborista inglés y fundador en El Salvador de un partído a semejanza de éste.  Dicha agrupación captó rápidamente una gran simpatía popular, logrando el apoyo del partido comunista--uno de los más antiguos de América Latina, de posición de avanzada y que creó grandes espectativas en la población--así como del presidente en funciones, Dr. Pío Romero Bosque, quien al observar la avalancha de popularidad en torno a Araujo, se abocó a prepara las condiciones para que se realizaran elecciones libres” (pages 3-4).

Ching 1997:  “The capstone of [Romero’s] reforms was the presidential election of 1931 in which Arturo Araujo was elected to office in a mostly free and fair democratic process” (page 287).  “The military would prove to be a valuable asset in the elections, especially in the presidential election of 1931.  Romero used armed units to maintain order, thereby creating a stable environment in which his officials were better able to monitor electoral procedures” (page 339).  “The presidential election of 1931 was a major event that generated much expectation, and equal amounts of documentation, for it was an innovation, and Romero saw it as the capstone of his four-year tenure and perhaps of his entire political career” (pages 346-347).  “The presidential election of 1931” (pages 346-354).  Gives the results for each candidate (page 354). 

Elam 1968:  “The three days of balloting in January of 1931 represented the first free presidential elections in the nation’s history.  In response to presidential orders, officers took up positions in each population center to act as observers and coordinators of the balloting.  Other military personnel formed an election center in the presidential house to register calculations as the votes were telegraphed from outlying polls…In the election of January 11-13, 1931, there were cast 225,809 votes, or 6.3 percent of the total population” (page 19).

El Salvador:  background to the crisis 1982:  “Arturo Araujo was elected president under the banner of the ‘Partido Laborista Salvadoreño’ in what many consider the only free election in El Salvador’s history.  Araujo was a wealthy landowner and an intellectual, who, while a student in England, had been greatly influenced by the British Labor Party” (page 13).

González, Luis Armando 1999:  “El 22 de enero de 1931 se realizaron las elecciones presidenciales con los resultados siguientes:  Araujo (Partido Laborista en coalición con la Unión Vitalista):  104 083 votos; Alberto Gómez Zárate (Partido Zaratista):  64 259; Enrique Córdova (Partido Evolución Nacional):  34 219; Miguel Tomás Molina (Partido Constitucional): 4 911.  Ninguno de los candidatos obtuvo mayoría absoluta, por lo que la Asamblea Legislativa tuvo que decider quién iba a ser el nuevo presidente” (page 587).

Gould 2008:  “Elite groups were not happy with the electoral results and accused the government of fraud.  To no avail, they asked the U.S. embassy to intervene in the election.  The results gave Araujo a wide victory, with 46 percent of the vote and much stronger majorities in the west…Araujo’s sweeping victory was a testament to the power of the democratic opposition and labor movements that flourished during the 1920s” (page 61).  Gives votes for each candidate.

Grieb 1971: “The elections of January 1931 served to intensify political maneuvering.  Incumbent governments normally controlled elections with the president selecting his successor, and the various parties acquiesced in this system to perpetuate control by the oligarchy.  President Pío Romero Bosque declined to designate an heir, producing a welter of candidates” (page 152).  “The Araujo-Martínez ticket scored impressively, but the multitude of candidates prevented it from securing a majority.  Araujo entered the Assembly ballot with the prestige of having garnered 101,000 votes as opposed to 64,000 for runner up, Gómez Zárate...The newly elected Assembly consisted predominantly of Araujo supporters, and this, together with the prestige of the popular vote, enabled him to assume the Presidency when the Legislature convened on 12 February 1931" (page 153).

Hoopes 1970:  “At the presidential elections scheduled for the second Sunday in January of 1931, seven candidates, including one woman (Prudencia Ayala of Santa Ana), presented themselves” (page 99). 

López, Carlos Gregorio 2000a:  “Las elecciones se realizaron en un ambiente de entusiasmo y orden.  Los seis partidos contendientes se redujeron a cinco...Los comicios duraron tres días, resultando ganador Araujo, pero por no alcanzar mayoría absoluta, la voluntad popular debió ser confirmada por la Asamblea” (page 385).  Gives further details on the election.

Lungo Uclés 1996: “Labor candidate Arturo Araujo won that year with the backing of popular organizations, including the recently established Communist Party.  This occurred during a time that was shaped by a temporary fracture in the hegemony of the oligarchy” (page 114). 

Mahoney 2001:  Pío Romero Bosque “was instrumental in setting up the first genuinely competitive elections in Salvadoran history.  The presidential election of January 1931 featured six main candidates, ranging from the progressive coffee planter Arturo Araujo of the newly formed Labor Party, to Alberto Gómez Zárate of the Quiñónez family, to the military candidacy of General Maximiliano Hernández Martínez.  Although Gómez Zárate was the early favorite, General Martínez joined the Araujo ticket as vice-president, and it was ultimately Araujo who emerged on top (winning 101,000 votes out of a total of 217,000 compared to Gómez Zárate’s 64,000).  Araujo, who made promises of land reform, was able to dominate in the central and western departments, where lower rural classes associated with the coffee economy were located” (page 201).

Mariscal 1979:  “Con las elecciones libres de 1930 llegó al poder Arturo Araujo, líder del nuevo Partido Laborista Salvadoreño.  Para entonces los efectos de la Gran Depresión se hacían ya sentir en El Salvador, a través de la caída de los precios del café en el mercado mundial, deterioro de la situación económica e incremento de la penuria e inquietud popular” (page 143).

Marroquín 1977: “Las elecciones se desarrollaron en un clima de auténtica libertad.  Nunca el país ha vuelto a vivir en un clima semejante. El triunfo del Partido Laborista fue rotundo.  El Ingeniero Arturo Araujo fue electo Presidente de la República…:  llevaba como vicepresidente al General Maximiliano Hernández Martínez” (page 148).

Montgomery 2000:  A “left-leaning party, the Salvadoran Labor Party, [won] the 1931 presidential election” (page 479).

Paige 1997:  “Faced with growing discontent toward the end of his term of office, Don Pío announced that the election of 1931 would be fully free and open to all and not simply a ratification of the chosen successor of the incumbent, as had been the case for the previous twenty-five years.  Six candidates announced for the presidency, and the winner in a free and open vote was Arturo Araujo, candidate of the newly formed Labor Party of El Salvador…Araujo was widely distrusted in ruling class circles, and his election was the result of widespread support from urban and rural workers and peasants” (page 110).  “Araujo was also supported by the radical Partido Proletario Salvadoreño led by Felipe Recinos, although he was forced to disavow Recinos during the campaign” (page 111).

Soto Gómez 2005:  “Participaron como candidatos a Presidente el General Antonio Claramount Lucero, Doctor Alberto Gómez Zárate, Doctor Miguel Tomás Molina, Ingeniero Arturo Araujo y Doctor Enrique Córdova” (page 176).  “Ganó las elecciones [Arturo Araujo] coaligando su Partido Laborista con el Partido Republicano.  Su compañero de formula era el General Maximiliano Hernández Martínez, del Partido Republicano” (page 177).

Wade 2003:  “Araujo’s campaign promised land reform and labor rights, both of which were in direct conflict with the interests of the coffee elite” (page 31).

Webre 1979:  “A host of candidates appeared carrying the standards of hastily organized ‘parties,’ but in the end the victory went to Arturo Araujo.  Himself a wealthy landowner with a reputation for treating his peasants fairly, Araujo ran a frankly populist campaign calling for sweeping change, including land reform, although he avoided the revolutionary rhetoric of the Marxists in favor of the more moderate ‘vitalista’ philosophy of Alberto Masferrer” (page 6).

Wilson 1969:  “The presidential election of January, 1931, brought a third unprecedented event:  the participation of the popular groups as an independent political force…Although all the candidates organized support among urban workers, three candidates, Arturo Araujo, and Generals Martínez and Claramount, appealed to the popular classes on social issues.  The ‘campesinos’…were an especially unexploited source of votes for these national candidates.  The Constitution of 1886, in Article 120, provided that all literate citizens would exercise the direct vote in elections” (pages 203-204).  “The results of the election held in December, 1930 [January 1931?] indicated the force of the popular groups in national politics.  Arturo Araujo received 105,000 votes, compared with 33,000 for Enrique Córdoba and 63,000 for Gómez Zárate, in a total of 220,000.  Araujo’s support came from a half dozen central and western departments, while the support of the other parties was distributed” (page 206).  “Araujo also received the support of Indian ‘cofradías’ who formerly backed Romero Bosque and Alfredo Quiñónez.  Gómez Zárate, as the political heir of the immediately preceding presidents, counted upon 30,000 votes in the Indian communities surrounding Izalco.  With the spread of radical ideas the Indian leader José Ama broke his relations with Gómez Zárate and turned his followers to Arturo Araujo.  Similarly, Araujo won the votes of the radical workers who ran no candidate of their own but who refused to support ‘liberal’ candidates.  The election of a populist candidate threatened the political base of the ‘liberal’ and the ‘progressive’ groups.  While both wished to organize popular support, neither benefited by the independent participation of the masses in national politics” (pages 207-208).

February

Anderson 1971: Gives votes received by top five candidates (page 47).  No simple majority is won, so on January 20, 1931 the election goes to the Assembly which elects the winner of the popular election.

Baloyra 1982:  “In order to prevent a maneuver by the oligarchy in the unicameral legislature that would have given the election to runner-up Alberto Gómez Zárate, who had obtained 62,931 votes and was the personal candidate of the Meléndez-Quiñónez clan, Enrique Córdova, the second runner-up with 32,778 votes, threw his support behind Araujo” (page 9).

Castro Morán 2005:  “Como la recién electa Asamblea Nacional Legislativa estaba constituida en su mayoría por partidarios del Ing. Araujo y, además, por la cantidad de votos obtenidos por el laborismo, fueron factores determinantes para que dicho cuerpo legislativo, al reunirse en pleno el 12 de febrero de 1931, declaraba triunfante al Ing. Araujo” (page 123).

Ching 1997:  “Because Araujo did not have an outright majority, the election went to the Assembly.  Córdova gave the votes of his Deputies to Araujo, who thus became the official winner” (page 354).

March

Elam 1968:  “On March 1, 1931, labor candidate Arturo Araujo was sworn into office on the basis of a clear victory at the polls.  Proposing broad social and economic reforms, the wealthy engineer and his supporters had barnstormed the country in an unprecedented fashion, promising land to the peasants and the elimination of taxes.  The day after Arturo Araujo moved to the presidential palace, his supporters began forming queues outside in the hope of collecting their share of the promised land.  Each day the crowds came and were turned away, and each day the newly elected president lost support” (pages 19-20).

Gould 2008:  “The SRI expanded primarily because it responded to the overwhelmingly popular demand for agrarian reform, intensified by the expectations raised by Araujo’s campaign.  His election legitimized the demand for land reform without offering anything more than token efforts toward relieving the intense land hunger of the poor.  The SRI thus became the vehicle of this newly awakened group…The promise and failures of Araujo’s government contributed significantly to the radicalization of the social movements of 1931…Araujo confronted enormous obstacles when he took office.  Within a short period he faced an élite that would not pay taxes; a middle class that would not allow more foreign loans; foreign banks that would not loan money easily; a U.S. customs receivership; and an ineffective public service infrastructure with a long tradition of graft and corruption” (pages 91-92).  “From its inception Araujo’s government also employed repression” (page 92).

Krauss 1991:  “Araujo hoped to mollify the fledgling rebels with higher wages, free public education, clean water, and land.  Araujo’s election sparked a rise in expectations.  Within forty-eight hours of his March inauguration, thousands of workers and peasants assembled outside the presidential palace for a three-day demonstration demanding radical land reform.  Police arrested Farabundo Martí at a massive march on Araujo’s home.  The new liberal president fell into an impossible situation, one that would become all too common for Salvadoran centrists:  he tried to placate the far-right and far-left” (page 61).

Leistenschneider 1980:  “Ingeniero Arturo Araujo (salvadoreño) gobernó como presidente de la república:  1o de Marzo al 2 de Diciembre de 1931…Vice-Presidente, General Maximiliano Hernández Martínez” (page 187).

Lindo-Fuentes 2007:  “Between December 1930 and March 1931 both the PCS and the SRI went into a period of retrogression.  Subjected to intensified police repression and bogged down by internal ideological disputes, they withdrew into themselves” (pages 48-49).

López, Carlos Gregorio 2000a:  “Tan solo tres semanas después de llegar a la presidencia, Araujo comenzó a sentir la presión de los comunistas…Este fue el inicio de una constante y creciente pugna entre los trabajadores dirigidos por la FRTS y el gobierno.  Al frente de los primeros se encontraba Agustín Farabundo Martí” (page 386).

Marroquín 1977:  “El triunfo del Partido Laborista originó grandes alegrías en un sector y profundo desconcierto en otro.  La oligarquía de los terratenientes quedó asombrada; no podía concebir que sus candidatos hubieran sido derrotados por la chusma, por la ‘plebe miserable.’  Por primera providencia la oligarquía asumió una actitud de boycot al nuevo gobierno…La casi totalidad de las plazas del Estado fueron ocupados por miembros del Partido Laborista, muchos de los cuales llegaron a desplazar a funcionarios que tenían largo años de desempeño en los mismos.  La máquina estatal empezó a funcionar con notoria pesadez y torpeza” (pages 148-149).

Paige 1997:  “To much of the oligarchy Araujo appeared to be a dangerous outsider threatening the established order, and after his election they boycotted his administration, leaving him with few experienced officials” (page 111).  Araujo’s “programs represented a progressive and democratic opening for El Salvador, but they were rapidly overwhelmed by financial crisis and popular desperation…There were rumors of a coup attempt shortly after his election, and in part to gain military support, he appointed presidential candidate General Maximiliano Hernández Martínez as his Vice President and Minister of Defense” (page 112).

Webre 1979:  “Once in office, Araujo proved unwilling or unable to deliver upon his promises.  The oligarchy withheld its support and thus made it difficult for him to recruit experienced ministers” (page 6).  “Arturo Araujo…owed his electoral victory in great part to the agreement of General Martínez to abandon his own presidential campaign, in which he represented the emerging corporate interest of the army.  The price for this agreement was the assignment of the war ministry to a soldier.  The job went to Martínez himself” (page 7).

Wilson 1969:  “Araujo’s pledge upon taking office to honor his promises to the masses ignored the elites and the middle sectors who had come to expect particular benefits from the state” (page 208).

April

López, Carlos Gregorio 2000a:  “Las capturas de líderes izquierdistas aumentaron y también se expulsó a varios extranjeros.  El diez de abril Martí fue capturado junto con otros agitadores.  Inmediatamente se organizó una campaña para lograr su libertad” (page 386).

May

Gould 2008:  “The SRI called for demonstrations in favor of freedom for…political prisoners throughout its bases in central and western Salvador.  The most significant of these demonstrations took place in Sonsonate on 17 May, in which from four to six hundred people, mostly campesinos, participated.  Many came from the new base of SRI support in the cantons of Izalco” (page 95).  “For the demonstrators and their families, 17 May was a defining moment.  The shooting represented a definitive rupture with Araujo’s government, which many had supported.  State violence also led many to the conviction that peaceful protest was not an option in their struggle for social justice.  Both political consequences radicalized the SRI rank and file” (page 98).  “The events of 17 May at once revealed and concealed the deepening of an ethnic dimension to the mass mobilization.  The majority of the demonstrators were Indians, yet both the left and the authorities tended to group rural Indians and ladinos into one ‘campesino’ category” (page 99).

Lindo-Fuentes 2007:  “(I)n roughly April and May 1931 both [the PCS and the SRI] refocused their organizational objectives.  Various reports reveal that a crucial meeting took place on May 15, 1931…Both organizations experienced impressive growth throughout the remainder of 1931.  The membership of the PCS rose to about five hundred…Notably, the party was still heavily urban, and San Salvador remained the center of party membership…Notwithstanding its impressive accomplishments and its declared commitment to organizing the western coffee workers, it remains likely that the party failed to establish a strong organizational foothold in the western countryside” (page 49).  ”Not only was the party based in urban areas, with nearly 75 percent of all party members being from San Salvador, but also almost every party member was Ladino.  Practically speaking, the party lacked familial and personal ties to the western countryside, and especially to its Indian communities.  In addition to ethnicity, another limiting factor before the party was the complex land-tenure situation in the western countryside and the way it clashed with the party’s ideological approach to property” (page 50).

López, Carlos Gregorio 2000a:  “El 18 de mayo, una manifestación organizada por los comunistas terminó en un enfrentamiento con las fuerzas militares que dejó varios muertos y heridos y muchos encarcelados.  Fue el primer acto represivo realimente grave, realizado bajo el gobierno de Araujo” (page 387).

Paige 1997:  “In May 1931 Indian peasants and rural workers from surrounding towns stormed the provincial capital of Sonsonate” (page 109).

Tilley 2005:  “The indigenous communities were anxious for a revolution against the rapidly strengthening ladino power structure…With its international contacts, they believed, the PSC could help them achieve what for four centuries they had been unable to achieve:  final victory over ladino government.  They had already begun militant mobilization under the communist banner, especially in some major and bloody demonstrations in May 1931, when thousands of Indians marched into Sonsonate” (page 145).

White 1973:  “By 1931 [strikes and marches] had increased, and in May Arturo Araujo began to repress them with bloodshed, the first such case being a demonstration at Sonsonate.  However, Araujo did announce that the Communist Party would be allowed to participate in the municipal elections scheduled for December.  There was still an attempt to balance concession with repression” (page 99).

June

Gould 2008:  “Following the events of 17 May, Araujo’s administration became increasingly committed to a repressive response to the left.  In early June police arrested Martí and others while they were conducting a meeting of three hundred in Armenia.  Martí’s arrest announced a period of intense government surveillance” (pages 132-133).  “In June Martinez, serving as both vice president and minister of war, led a protest by the army against the so-called ‘código rojo.’  This law had allowed Romero Bosque to try and execute the military coup conspirators of 1927 within forty-eight hours…Martínez and other officers demanded the reinstatement of the military right to ‘insurrection’…Araujo refused to give in to this pressure” (page 139).

July

Bird 2001:  “In July of 1931 the National Guard was sent to put down a student protest in the capital.  A bitter fight ensued and numerous injuries and arrests resulted.  The next day the government declared a state of siege.  The remaining months of 1931 saw falling coffee prices, expanding popular protests, and a corresponding step up of repressive measures on the part of the state” (page 128).

Gould 2008:  “(O)n 13 July Araujo declared martial law…The Partido Laborista began to crack under the stress of anti-popular repression and governmental inaction.  A putatively pro-government demonstration in July revealed the depth of Laborista alientation from the government.  Araujo brought between five and ten thousand rural workers to a rally in the capital.  After marching to the Casa Presidencial, they joined a second demonstration of thousands calling for the resignation of all Araujo’s ministers because of their inaction on land reform” (page 133).

Leistenschneider 1980:  “El 11 de julio de 1931 fue declarado el Estado de Sitio en la República” (page 188).

August

Elam 1968:  “(W)hen the government sharply reduced the military budget in August…it did so in a climate of suspicion.  Though eventually rescinded, the order irreparably damaged civil-military relations and plans for a revolt were soon underway” (page 22).

Gould 2008:  “In August the government called in the cavalry to break two municipal workers strikes in San Salvador” (page 133).

September

Ching 2004:  “Araujo responded to the [economic] crisis in a manner consistent with his political platform; he maintained the already limited social spending and cut back in other areas, most notably military pay.  As salaries shrank or fell into arrears, the military grew restless” (page 52).

Elam 1968:  “From September through November of 1931, officers in every department went without their salaries” (pages 22-23).

Gould 2008:  “The suppression of a union meeting on a coffee plantation near Zaragosa in La Libertad marked another watershed in the government’s relations with the left.  Some two hundred workers attended the meeting, on 23 September.  The local landlord called on the National Guard, who arrived on the scene.  Apparently without violent provocation, the Guardia opened fire with submachine guns, killing fourteen campesinos and wounding twenty-four.  The assault at Zaragosa was by far the most serious act of state violence up to that point, and it stands out in the record of action against the left and the labor movement over the previous two years” (pages 133-134).

October

Lindo-Fuentes 2007:  “(M)uch to their surprise, the leaders of the PCS and SRI discovered in late 1931 that an insurrection of potentially massive proportions was forming in the western countryside.  They sent a series of letters to their superiors in New York, requesting advice, weapons, international advisors, and money.  The tone of their letters reveals desperation” (page 47).

November

Elam 1968:  “(O)n November 30, after a series of appeals, Araujo promised that the government would pay all salaries.  The promise, however, was broken, and a revolt began two days later” (page 23).

Gould 2008:  “By November the Socorro Rojo reported having recruited five hundred new members in the Zaragosa area…The government’s use of force against the rural movement radicalized the struggle and placed the communist leadership in a position where they had to either accept a retreat into passivity on the part of their peasant and Indian militants or advance toward some form of armed struggle” (page 134).  “An incident in Ahuachapán in November 1931 revealed the growing acceptance of an insurrectionary solution among the popular sectors, particularly in the west.  In response to efforts by the Communist Party to register their candidates for the upcoming congressional and municipal elections, the government arrested leftist leaders in Sonsonate, Ahuachapán, and Santa Ana” (page 137).  “The arrest of the PCS candidates in Ahuachapán was part of a major national crackdown on the left during November 1931.  Government authorities arrested hundreds of activists in the west and around San Salvador.  The resort to massive repression during the middle of an election campaign revealed the inability of Araujo’s government to deal with the left and the growing protest movements” (page 138).  “The tension between Araujo and Martínez intensified on 27 November, when officers rejected the ten days’ back pay that Araujo offered the military” (page 139).

Ladutke 2004:  “By November 1931, the government had failed to pay both officers and enlisted men for nine consecutive months” (page 20).

December

Bird 2001:  “The situation had grown too volatile for General Martínez and much of the military.  They launched a ‘coup d’état’ and overthrew the civilian government on December 2, 1931” (page 128).

Bland 1992: “The depression doomed many a democratically elected regime in Latin America.  El Salvador under Arturo Araujo was no exception.  The price of coffee dropped by 45 percent in six months...Araujo, a landowner with progressive ideals, had the misfortune of taking office in spring 1931, in the midst of massive labor and student strikes.  Martial law was declared, and soon the military, upset about not having received its pay and supported by the oligarchy, which distrusted Araujo, easily overthrew his government after nine months” (page 166).

Ching 1997:  “The Martínez era (1931-44) constitutes a crucial period of transition between the civilian oligarchies of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries and the military authoritarian regimes of the latter half of the twentieth century” (page 357).  “In the confused aftermath of Araujo’s departure from the capital, the main conspirators, eleven mid-level officers, formed a Military Directorate and assumed control of the Executive Powers.  Two days later they turned power over to the Vice President, General Martínez, who supposedly had been jailed on the first day of fighting” (page 364).  “(O)ne of the more pressing concerns for Martínez was the forthcoming elections, scheduled for December 13, 1931 (municipal elections) and January 12, 1932 (deputy elections).  Thousands of municipal officials and the 42 Deputies of the Assembly were about to be elected, and in its infancy, the Martínez regime was not in a strong position to control the process” (page 371).  “Reports from outlying officials of potential disturbances in the elections, especially in the western region, with its increasingly mobilized peasantry, prompted Martínez to postpone the [municipal] elections from their scheduled date of December 13 to January 3, 1932.  In some areas of the west, elections were pushed back even further until the first week of February” (page 372).

Ching 2004:  “The manner in which Martínez rejected democracy...was consistent with the patronage system of the previous decades of civilian rule; he retained some electoral procedures but without the substance of popular rule.  Elections occurred regularly and often; people registered to vote and voted; and results were tallied and published.  Politics under Martínez involved a vigorous electorate and electoral process...The functioning of this system is perhaps best understood in the context of a brief history of electoral procedures in the decades prior to 1931” (page 55).  See pages 55-56. 

Dur 1998: “The United States, however, was determined to break the revolutionary habit in Central America by denying recognition to ‘de facto’ presidents...[Martínez] refused to yield to diplomatic pressure exerted principally by the United States, in concert with El Salvador’s neighbours, the other four Central American republics...The United States forbore closing its legation in San Salvador, but normal diplomatic relations between the United States and El Salvador, uninterrupted since their inception in 1863, were suspended for more than two years from December 1931 to March 1934" (pages 96-97).

Eguizábal  1984: “El régimen del General Hernández Martínez marca el rechazo de la oligarquía agraria salvadoreña a resolver el problema de la tierra y su decision de mantener su dominación por la fuerza” (page 18). 

Elam 1968:  “A military plan for the assumption of power had been rehearsed since the first days of September…To curb personal ambition, the revolt was made a joint and quasi-democratic enterprise…A part of the National Guard, the National Police, and the Cavalry—about 30 percent of the armed forces—chose to remain loyal to the government” (page 27).  “On the second day of the revolt, the Military Directorate transferred full executive powers to the Vice-President, General Maximiliano Hernández Martínez.  The directorate made the decision only after careful deliberation with prominent lawyers.  As is commonly the case following the establishment of a government by force, those in command saw the need to legitimatize their powers…The directorate, however, retained the power to make military appointments until its disbandment on December 12” (pages 31-32).

Gould 2008:  “The radicalization of the western countryside certainly played a role in the military coup of 2 December that overthrew Araujo” (page 138).  “On 1 December Araujo…removed [Martínez] from his cabinet position of minister of war…This move angered many army officers” (page 139).  “Initially there was confusion about the military revolt and the status of resistance by Araujo supporters in the police and army.  By 4 December, however, the directorate was clearly in control of the state apparatus.  The new military directorate quickly found itself supported by the country’s financial élite” (page 139).  “The PCS was in a state of confusion about how to respond to the new regime, since it was possible that the government would opt for a progressive agenda…Four days after the coup the regime allowed the Communist Party to open an office in San Salvador…Three days later the police did shut down the headquarters and take party lists, but allowed it to reopen as an election headquarters” (page 140).  “Taking advantage of the political lull and uncertainty, on 9 December, at the peak of the coffee harvest, unionized rural workers in western Salvador began what rapidly became the first sustained wave of strikes in Salvadoran history.  From 9 to 19 December strikes broke out in the departments of Santa Ana, La Libertad, and Ahuachapán in demand of higher wages and better working conditions” (page 141).  “The apparent neutrality of the regime and the timid response of the landowners emboldened the rural labor movement” (page 142).  Describes additional strikes.

Haggerty 1990: “The 1931 coup represented the first instance when the Salvadoran military took direct action as an institution to curtail a potential political drift to the left.  This watershed event ushered in a period of direct and indirect military rule that would last for fifty years” (page 15).

Krauss 1991:  “Martínez was as clever as he was eccentric.  One of his first acts as president was to put off municipal elections long enough to allow the Communist party to register candidates and reveal its supporters.  His real aim became apparent when he suspended the vote a second time:  he wanted the security forces to know every Communist in the land” (page 62).

Ladutke 2004:  “Military hard-liners overthrew Araujo in December, bringing his vice-president, General Maximiliano Hernández Martínez, to power” (page 20).

Leonard 1984:  “In 1931 General Maximiliano Hernández Martínez engineered a coup that inaugurated a thirteen-year dictatorial career.  Constitutional provisions in 1935 and 1939 extended his term in office until 1944…Deputies to the unicameral legislature…were approved by the president for their nonopposition to the administration” (page 48).

Leistenschneider 1980:  “Directorio Cívico…del 2 de Diciembre al 4 del mismo mes de 1931…Este Directorio Militar…entregó el Mando Supremo al Vice-Presidente y Ministro de la Guerra de entonces General Maximiliano Hernández Martínez” (page 189).  Lists 12 members.  “General Maximiliano Hernández Martínez gobernó como vice-presidente:  4 Diciembre de 1931 al 28 Agosto de 1934” (page 191).

Lindo-Fuentes 2007:  “Normally, municipal elections occurred in December, but because of the coup, many elections across the country, and in particular in the western region, were postponed until early January” (page 81).

Mahoney 2001:  “On December 2, 1931, a military coup ousted Araujo from power.  Relatively unknown junior officers, acting without the support of key senior army commanders, led the coup.  These officers quickly formed a Military Directorate and within two days installed General Martínez as president, thus following constitutional guidelines that provided for vice-presidential succession” (page 202).  “Lacking key domestic and international support, Martínez appeared to stand little chance of prolonging his government beyond a few months” (page 203).

Paige 1997:  “On December 2 a military coup deposed Araujo after brief resistance by loyal forces, and General Martínez was asked to assume the presidency.  There is considerable doubt concerning Martínez’s role in the coup, but there is no doubt that he was its eventual beneficiary.  Araujo’s program of social reform and El Salvador’s brief democratic opening had come to an end” (page 113).

Soto Gómez 2005:  Gives the names of the members of the “Directorio Militar” (page 178).  “Este Directorio gobernó oficialmente del 2 al 4 de diciembre de 1931” (page 179).  “El Directorio se disolvió, en un astuto juego político, y los destinos del país quedaron en manos del Vicepresidente Constitucional General Maximiliano Hernández Martínez” (page 180).

Tilley 2005:  “Martínez immediately faced international criticism for the coup and demands for restoration of an elected government” (page 143).

Turcios 2000:  “(U)n Directorio Militar electo por los delegados de los regimientos rebeldes había acordado cumplir los preceptos constitucionales, tomar el control de los ministerios y llamar al vicepresidente a rendir la protesta de ley” (page 406).

Webre 1979:  “That the Salvadoran army emerged as a political actor of prime importance only at this moment was partially due to its rather late professionalization, beginning only in the early twentieth century.  The representatives of the oligarchy, seeking to employ the armed forces as merely an instrument of their own power, had maintained civilian control and a tight budgetary policy” (page 6-7).

White 1973:  “The municipal elections were put off, but only for a month and the Communist Party was allowed, for the only time in Salvadorean history, to participate” (page 100).

Williams 1997: “The Hernández Martínez regime came into existence precisely as a reaction to liberal, electoral democracy.  The peasant rebellion of 1932 only hammered in that point and made order and discipline the regime’s bywords.  While electoral events continued to occur as mandated by the constitution and various by-laws, the regime viewed organized political activity as a threat to the country’s economic and social stability” (page 27).

Wilson 1969:  “Assuming that the change of government indicated something about the alignment of political interest groups similar to those that existed in the election of January, 1931, the rise of Martínez may be analyzed according to benefits to each of the three groupings—the liberals, the employee groups, and the workers” (page 211).  Gives details.

Zamora 2003:  “De 1931 a 1945 se vivió una dictadura con un sistema abiertamente monopartidista donde la oposición fue efectivamente suprimida haciendo uso de instrumentos legales y de una brutal represión” (page 14).

1932

Ching 2004:  “Between 1930 and 1932, the value of both imports and exports in El Salvador declined by more than 50 percent.  This economic crisis had wide-ranging social and political implications” (page 52).  “Throughout the second half of 1931, peasants in the four western departments of El Salvador—Sonsonate, Santa Ana, Ahuachapán, and La Libertad—had been mobilizing against local authorities” (page 52).

Gould 2008:  “By early January the regional agrarian élite was raising thousands of dollars a day for the National Guard…The refusal of the U.S. State Department to recognize the de facto regime also forced it into a tighter alliance with the cafetaleros, who generally got along well with the legations from the United States and Britain.  This combination of State Department opposition to Martínez and élite pressure offers the best explanation of the volte face of the regime, from a populist overture to the left toward violent suppression of the movement” (pages 143-144).

Lindo-Fuentes 2007:  “Research from the municipality of Nahuizalco shows that conflicts between Indians and Ladinos over control of municipal government had become especially intense on the eve of the 1932 insurrection” (page 59).  “Ladinos, led primarily by the Brito family, had been engaged in long-standing electoral conflicts with the local Indian population.  The conflicts seem to have begun in earnest in the mid-1880s, just as coffee started to become a viable commodity and the number of wealthy Ladino families in the region increased.  By 1932, the Ladino and Indian populations in Nahuizalco had been locked in political conflict for almost fifty years.  At no time was the tension higher than in late 1931 and early 1932, just prior to the outbreak of insurrection” (page 60). 

Tilley 2005:  “El Salvador’s exports plummeted in value from US$22.7 million in 1928 to US$6.4 million in 1932” (page 135).  “(T)he indigenous communities were also facing rapid political erosion.  The abolition of the comunidades had eliminated their formal corporate representation to the state; nationally, as a collective, they were voiceless.  They were increasingly vulnerable to the various repressive police forces controlled by ladino individuals and ladino-dominated town governments…By mid-1931, the conditions for a major revolt were smoldering.  Some hopes for change were pinned on local elections in December.  But when those elections were postponed, the die was cast” (page 136).

Wilson 1969:  “In the nineteenth century the elites accepted political democracy because it guaranteed equal opportunity for all members of the established groups to organize factional support.  After 1931, however, they abandoned liberalism as the laborers threatened to develop an organization and issues independent of their traditional patrons” (page 208).

January 3-5: municipal election

Alvarenga Venutolo 1996: “Cuando el Estado, hacia mediados de la década de 1920, empezó a favorecer a los ladinos en detrimento de los indígenas, estos últimos buscaron nuevas alianzas políticas.  Al iniciarse el año de 1932, miembros de comunidades indígenas ya tenían una considerable experiencia política...La creciente hegemonía de la ideología radical y los cambios en las relaciones entre indígenas y el Estado, empujaron a los caciques a adoptar la ideología comunista” (pages 315-316).

Anderson 1971: “The government promised complete freedom in these elections and invited all parties, including the Communist party of El Salvador, to participate...In order to vote, one had to be registered in the books kept by each ‘municipio,’ where one inscribed his name and that of his party.  Allowing the Communist party to register presented the government with a list of its adherents” (page 88). 

Ching 1997:  “(B)y the municipal election of January 1932, [the Indians of Nahuizalco] had run out of patience.  The municipal elections that took place in January 1932 had been postponed from the original date of December 1931…The timing was propitious, for throughout the western region, Indian communities were mobilizing for an armed insurrection, and the day of the election almost concided with the planned day of the revolt…When it came time to vote the ladinos seized control of the electoral hall and allowed Indians to vote but recorded their votes in favor of [the ladino candidate].  The Indians protested and demanded a nullification” (page 139).  Describes outcome.  “(I)n most of the nation, the municipal elections took place on January 3rd” (page 372).  “Martínez did…follow through with his promise of allowing the communist party to participate in the elections, and the communist slate in San Salvador ran a very close third, although repression of suspected communists in the countryside continued.  Comprehensive results from the elections are not available, so it is impossible to determine if one particular party dominated the elections” (pages 373-374).

Gould 2008:  “During the first few days of January, in response to the threat of fraud and intimidation, the left developed a two-pronged strategy.  First, the FRTS ‘suspended’ the rural strikes.  It withdrew the pickets so that the workers could travel to the towns and cities to vote.  The PCS and its allied organizations instructed their rank and file to line up regardless of whether they received permission to vote to demonstrate party strength…Anticipating an antidemocratic response by the regime, the left attempted to prepare its rank and file for this eventuality, counseling pacific protest whenever possible, but armed resistance when faced with state violence” (page 146).  “(T)he regime blocked PCS voters from voting in Ahuachapán, and elsewhere the elections were canceled or marred by fraud.  According to the British consul, ‘the suspension of the elections in the West was due to growing unrest of plantation laborers produced by the activities of agitators and the depressed conditions of coffee and sugar industries.’  A lieutenant in the National Guard and others emphasized that Martínez used the elections to gauge the level and makeup of Communist support…The regime may have decided to thwart the PCS victories, but its officials and local authorities did not follow uniform tactics”  (page 149).  Gives additional details on individual towns.  “Other parties had significant followings in San Salvador, and the authorities there apparently denied the PCS a plurality by closing the voting booths before its voters had a chance to vote.  The electoral authorities called upon the ‘bourgeois’ parties to vote first.  At the same time, the PCS made the mistake of ordering its peasant voters (from the city’s outskirts) to vote before its city supporters did” (page 150).  Gives more details.

Lazo 1992: “Para las elecciones municipales que se dieron en enero de 1932, los partidos populares, entre ellos el recién creado Partido Comunista (marzo 1930), fueron claros ganadores en muchos lugares, pero el régimen les negó el reconocimiento, dando inicio con ello a los fraudes electorales en contra de la voluntad mayoritaria de la población” (page 26).

Leistenschneider 1980:  “Hubieron Elecciones Municipales en enero de 1932, pero fueron anuladas” (page 193).

Lindo-Fuentes 2007:  “After a municipal election in early January 1932, the Indian community [in Nahuizalco] insisted to the national government that the Ladinos had stolen the election” (page 60).”The military regime allowed the elections to follow the democratic norms instituted by President Pío Romero Bosque, allowing for broad-based political mobilization.  In fact, the Communist Party backed candidates in a number of municipalities, including Ahuachapán and San Salvador.  The party’s candidates ran under third parties because the Communist Party was still clandestine, but they received significant popular support, partly because party leaders insisted that they avoid ideological discussions and instead focus on the population’s immediate suffering.  The party’s candidate in San Salvador came in third, only a few percentage points behind the winner” (page 81).

Lungo Uclés 1996: “(T)he Communist Party won many predominantly indigenous municipalities in western El Salvador, these elections were quickly annulled by the new dictatorship of Martínez” (page 114).

Marroquín 1977:  “(S)e permite la realización de elecciones Municipales y en ellas, la participación abierta y franca del Partido Comunista de El Salvador, Sección de la III Internacional (Comunista).  Por primera vez y última vez en la Historia de El Salvador, los comunistas presentaron candidaturas ‘proletarias’ sobre el principio de la lucha de clases.  El clima de libertad electoral dejado por el Presidente Romero Bosque, fue respetado en apariencia.  Los ciudadanos ejercieron el sufragio sin ninguna coacción de parte de las autoridades; el sufragio era público y el nombre de cada votante quedaba consignado en los correspondientes pliegos así como los candidatos por quienes se votaba.  Las candidaturas comunistas lograron gran cantidad de votos” (page 151).  “Cuando las autoridades se dieron cuenta de que en algunos municipios se corría el riesgo de que triunfaran las candidaturas comunistas, se hizo intervenir a la Guardia Nacional y se ayudó a triunfar a la candidatura que seguía en el orden de los sufragios…Entre los lugares donde la fuerza pública intervino para impedir el triunfo de los comunistas pueden citarse Soyapango, Guazapa, Izalco, Nahuizalco y Colón.  En otros lugares la votación fue suspendida arbitrariamente” (page 152).  Lists the candidates of the Communist Party for each municipal office in San Salvador.  “Veinte días más tarde cuando Martínez desató la represión comunista, la mayoría de las personas que figuraron en dicha planilla fueron fusilados como peligrosos agentes rojos.  La única prueba de su peligrosidad fue el haber figurado en la planilla de candidatos comunistas” (page 152).

Montgomery 2000:  “The first modern party was the [PCS], which was founded during a period of political liberalization in the late 1920s by Augustín Farabundo Martí, the educated son of a mestizo landowner.  The party focused its organizing in southwestern El Salvador and participated in the January 1932 municipal and Assembly elections” (page 479).

Turcios 2000:  “El primer domingo de 1932 se celebran elecciones municipales.  La agrupación más fuerte en los últimos comicios, el Partido Laborista, no se presenta.  Aunque había llevado a Hernández Martínez a la vicepresidencia, ahora enfrenta obstáculos para su participación, y el general se niega a levantarlos” (page 407).  “En la mañana del domingo, los votantes se forman en filas—hay una para cada candidato—, mientras los oradores los animan con sus discursos.  Cuando llegan a la mesa, cada ciudadano dice su nombre para que lo anoten en los pliegos—también agrupados por candidato—donde se escriben los votos.  Por primera vez los comunistas han presentado candidatos en muchas ciudades.  En San Salvador es Joaquín Rivas, quien sorprende con una de las filas más numerosas…En las elecciones de la capital no hay incidentes, en cambio, en otras ciudades…sí se registran irregularidades que obligan a la suspensión de los comicios.  En esos lugares, los candidatos comunistas aparecían como probables triunfadores” (page 408).  Gives additional details and sources of information.

Wade 2003:  “Tensions were exacerbated by the electoral fraud of the January 1932 municipal elections in which the government suspended elections in strongholds of the Salvadoran Communist Party (PCS) and refused to certify results in areas where the PCS claimed victory” (pages 31-32).

January 10

Gould 2008:  “On 10 January the Central Committee of the PCS convened a plenum to discuss the issue of insurrection.  The leadership was convinced—and the day’s events would bear them out—that the legislative elections would be a farce and that the regime would not waver in its repressive strategy.  The fifty delegates to the plenum were under intense pressure from departmental branches in the west to move toward an insurrectionary strategy” (pages 160-161).  “The plenum approved a plan that depended in large part upon support from within the military.  Its principal objective was the assault on the military barracks of the major cities in the west and the capital” (page 162).

Lindo-Fuentes 2007:  “The decision as to whether to join the insurrection in January 1932 provided another source of intraleft dispute with potentially long-term consequences.  When the leaders of the PCS and SRI learned in late 1931 that an insurrection of potentially massive proportions was going to occur among the western peasantry, they found themselves divided over how to respond.  Some leaders welcomed the insurrection and advocated supporting it out of a belief that its existence proved that El Salvador was ready for revolution.  Other leaders believed that the uprising was doomed, but insisted that the PCS and SRI had no alternative but to join because they could not be perceived as letting the masses engage the class enemy in combat alone…Those who supported joining won the debate in a vote held on January 10.  As a result the PCS and the SRI contributed what they could to the insurrection, although significant disagreement remained” (page 192).

January 10-12:  congressional election

Anderson 1971: “The conservative Partido Fraternal Progresista boycotted the elections in the capital department on the grounds of electoral fraud.  And in the department of San Salvador early returns...indicated a possible Communist party victory...Voting, it might be noted, had been extremely light, with only a few hundred votes cast in the capital city” (pages 90-91).

Ching 1997:  “The deputy elections of January 12th to the 14th were decidedly more predetermined [than the municipal elections].  The military submitted slates of candidates to each department and did not allow competition” (page 374).  Quotes a number of sources showing that the government selected the winners.  “The military’s control of the deputy elections was an important step in consolidating its hold on power” (page 375).  “The Assembly elections of January 1932 reportedly drew only 379 voters in the entirety of San Salvador during three days of voting” (page 396).

Gould 2008:  “Notwithstanding the extreme unlikelihood that the regime would allow PCS victories in the legislative elections, the PCS Electoral Commission continued to proceed as if the elections were a real option” (page 159).

Marroquín 1977:  “11 de enero:  tienen lugar las elecciones para diputados a la Asamblea Nacional.  Con el fracaso electoral anterior ya nadie tiene confianza en la libertad electoral y muy pocos son los que votan” (page 153).

Turcios 2000:  “El domingo 10 de enero se abren las votaciones para diputados.  Esta vez, la concurrencia es menor.  Hasta en San Salvador se registran incidentes” (page 408).

January 16

Bird 2001:  “(T)he government canceled the second round of municipal and legislative elections after it became clear the Communist party had done well in the first round.  The Martínez government immediately imposed a state of siege.  The countryside was boiling over with frustration and calls for revolt.  The divergent popular sectors agreed on a coordinated, armed rebellion on January 16, 1932.  The date, however, was postponed twice…In the meantime, the government caught wind of the planned rebellion and killed or jailed many of its leaders…Despite the loss of its leadership, the element of surprise, and proper military preparation, the rebellion proceeded” (page 128).

Gould 2008:  “By 16 January the military had already discovered and eliminated most of the revolutionary conspirators in its ranks” (page 166).

January 18

Anderson 1981:  “Agitations and plans for a Marxist revolution began to grow; but before the movement could come to a head, Martínez, now the chief of state, managed to find out the underground hideout of the movement’s leaders, and [Agustín Farabundo] Martí, [Alfonso] Luna, and [Mario] Zapata were arrested on the night of 18 January 1932 in the capital.  The movement was now headless, but the revolt was staged in any event” (page 23).

Ching 1998:  “Interestingly, the small faction [of the PCS] that supported the idea of armed rebellion appears to have been led by the famed Salvadoran activist Farabundo Martí, who is often cast by scholars and laypersons alike as a central figure in the PCS and the rebellion…But party records show that Martí was estranged from the PCS.  His official status in El Salvador was as a representative of the Comintern’s international aid organization, the Socorro Rojo Internacional (SRI)” (page 225).  “Ironically Martí’s status in the party increased significantly after his death and the virtual destruction of the party in 1932.  Martí’s supporters survived the matanza more intact than did Anaya’s, so it was they who oversaw the reorganization of the party in the mid-1930s” (page 226).

Gould 2008:  “Following leads from the captured soldiers, police arrested the PCS leaders Farabundo Martí, Mario Zapata, and Alfonso Luna and captured the military plans for the insurrection” (page 166).

January 20

Gould 2008:  “On the morning of 20 January, after the arrests and the regime’s declaration of a state of siege, the PCS Central Committee convened to discuss its options” (page 166).

January 21

Wilson 1969:  “The discovery of a revolutionary plot shortly after the exile of Arturo Araujo was announced in the quasi-official ‘Diario del Salvador’ on January 21, 1932…The basis of the report was the capture of the recently-liberated Augustín Farabundo Martí with incriminating documents in the capital suburb of Mejicanos” (page 225).

January 22-23

Alvarenga Venutolo 1996: Although the Indian communities were the targets of the repression, the National Guard also executed ladinos suspected of being Communist sympathizers.  “Apoyar la ideología comunista se convirtió en un crimen que debía pagarse con la vida...Precisamente en 1932 fue creada una nueva identidad nacional basada en el anticomunismo” (page 326).

Anderson 1981:  “The planter class had long lived with the fear of peasant revolt.  So long had they systematically starved, defrauded, and brutalized the ‘campesinos’ that they knew someday a great jacquerie would take place.  Now they set out to make such an example of the failed revolutionaries that the peasants would never again think of rising against their betters.  Further, the separateness of the Indian communities (such as those in Izalco) with their native ‘caciques,’ or chiefs, and their ‘cofradías,’ religious brotherhoods which no ‘ladino’ could join, had always been resented” (page 24).

Bird 2001:  “The uprising in the capital never got off the ground, but in the western departments of Sonsonate and Ahuachapán the peasants took control of several municipalities.  The government of President Martínez struck back quickly and brutally against the ill-coordinated revolt…The repercussions of the matanza were profound…Among Martínez’s actions was an administrative reorganization of the state…(I)n direct conflict with the 1886 constitution, Martínez further consolidated state control by replacing civilians with military officers at the local and national levels” (page 129).

Bland 1992: “The ‘matanza’ of 1932--the massacre of 10,000 to 40,000 peasants in response to an uprising organized by Communist leader Augustín Farabundo Martí...was a central turning point in the history of the country, an event that deeply influenced the Right and the Left’s view of their enemies in the violent decades to come.  The massacre demonstrated the brutal lengths to which the regime that was established over the preceding decades would go to defend the status quo and also instilled a reactionary fear of communism in those who were determined to preserve their societal status” (page 167).

Browning 1971:  “The events of January 1932—the murder of landowners resident on their estates, the revolutionary demands made by the rebels, the large number of peasants involved, and the fact that their march was stopped only within miles of the capital—left the government in no doubt about the problems inherent in the new agrarian structure so recently introduced, or about the deep discontent among the rural population” (page 273).

Byrne 1996: “The modern Salvadoran political system dates from 1932 and the defeat of a peasant revolt inspired by the Communist Party under the leadership of Farabundo Martí” (page 23).

Caldera T. 1983: “Para 1932 se produjo con el apoyo del partido comunista un levantamiento armado de los campesinos indígenas de la zona occidental del país, exigiendo la restauración de las tierras comunales y mejoras en las condiciones socio-políticas” (page 4).

Ching 1997:  “In a matter of three days [peasants in four western departments] gained control over roughly a dozen municipalities, including the important and populous townships of Nahuizalco, Izalco and Juayúa in Sonsonate Department.  Local military units were overwhelmed” (page 375).  “The government sent reinforcements to the west on the morning of the 25th, and these troops proceeded to unleash a reign of terror upon the peasant population” (page 376).

Ching 1998a:  “The 1932 ‘matanza’ was one of the single most brutal episodes of state-sponsored violence in Latin American history” (page 154).  “The massacre seemed the fatal blow to communities already fragmented by the privatisation of their communal lands and the advance of a ‘ladino’-dominated coffee economy.  But Indian culture proved resilient…From the civil registry we see that the Indian birth rates remained steady, and indeed in some areas even increased, after the ‘matanza.’  The structures of ‘cofradía’ and community, the bedrock of Indian identity, survived as well…But the Indians also had a little help from the military government…(T)he military’s support of the Indians did not go beyond the basics.  Indians were not allowed to compete for control over municipal governments, a privilege reserved for ‘ladinos’” (page 155).  “Regardless of what the Indians thought about the military after the ‘matanza,’ they recognised the role that the military intended to play and used the military as a line of defence against ‘ladino’ assaults.  The more the military supported the Indians, the more the Indians turned to the military for assistance” (page 156).

Dunkerley 1988:  “(T)he rebellion itself was less a direct result of the military coup of December 1931 that finally overthrew the luckless Araujo than of a long-planned rural strike and the cancellation of the municipal elections of early January 1932 that the new government of General Martínez had originally permitted to go ahead” (page 95).

Elam 1968:  “The abortive peasant uprising of early 1932 proved to be a convenient excuse for a thorough militarization of the government and the expulsion of reform-minded officers from the armed forces.  The net effect of these policies was to freeze conservative officers in key civil and military positions and to create deep divisions within the officer corps” (page v).  “Hernández Martínez’s government…emerged from the revolutionary experience of 1932 supported by a more devoted and united armed force than had existed in the nation for many years.  In addition, the government could boast having gained the following of most of the urban populations as well as the wholehearted support of the landowners, some of whom owed their lives to government protection” (pages 41-42).

Grieb 1971: “Successful suppression of the rebellion won the Martínez government broad support...Military dissension was forgotten in the effort to deal with this serious threat…Martínez’s strong stand also won him the gratitude of the politically powerful landowning classes, thus adding significant support from the civilian sector to his base.  The congressional elections which followed on the heels of the uprising resulted in a complete sweep by the adherents of the ‘de facto’ regime” (page 163).

Ladutke 2004:  “The military and the oligarchy…were not satisfied with simply putting down this revolt.  Instead, they carried out collective punishment by executing somewhere between eight thousand and thirty thousand campesinos without discriminating between those who took part in the rebellion and those who did not” (page 20).  “Despite its failure, the uprising itself reinforced the right’s deepest fears. This led to increasing anti-communism and further justification for the military’s growing role” (page 21).

Lauria-Santiago 1999:  “(I)n the 1932 revolt the [Indian] communities could not draw on their previous political and military clout to pull off a confrontation with a stronger central state controlled by a professional and well-armed military that no longer relied on local bases of power and alliances, much less peasant militias, to determine the balance of power” (page 221).

Lindo-Fuentes 2007:  “The rebellion lasted about three days before the military collected itself and regained control of the occupied towns.  During the army’s counterattacks, the rebels retreated quickly before the soldiers’ superior weaponry.  By the time the rebellion was suppressed, the rebels had killed between fifty and one hundred people.  The reoccupation of rebel-held towns marked only the beginning of the state’s devastating response to the uprising.  During the next two weeks, the army and local paramilitary bands embarked on a massive killing spree.  They massacred peasants indiscriminately throughout the entire western region” (page 1).  “The last major site of rebel attack was the municipality of Nahuizalco in Sonsonate Department…One of the rebels’ main targets in Nahuizalco was the Brito clan, a family of Ladinos that had moved into the region in the late nineteenth century and had become wealthy and politically powerful.  They were leaders of the small, but wealthy Ladino population in Nahuizalco and had been locked in an ongoing conflict with the local Indian community over control of municipal government for many years.  Francisco Brito was the town’s alcalde at the time of the uprising” (page 35).  “Notwithstanding the evidence that suggests communism was central to the uprising, much evidence exists to challenge communist causality” (page 46).  A “reason to question the validity of communist causality is that the leadership of El Salvador’s Communist Party did not believe that El Salvador was ready for revolution; therefore, it had not been preparing for an armed insurgency.  The Comintern and its office in New York City agreed and had instructed communists in El Salvador to focus on mass organizing instead of armed insurrection” (page 47).

Mahoney 2001:  “(J)ust as presidential transfer seemed imminent, the peasant revolt of 1932 erupted, enabling General Martínez to consolidate a secure power base…The revolt followed on the heels of growing rural mobilization in the western departments during the Araujo government. The internally divided Salvadoran Communist Party (PCS), led by Agustín Farabundo Martí, had organized in this area since 1930” (page 203).  “Yet most scholars agree that the 1932 revolt was primarily a spontaneous peasant rebellion led by Indian town caciques and religious organizations rather than a Communist-inspired insurrection…For the coffee elite and the military, the revolt represented the worst possible combination:  Indian rebellion and Communist revolution.  Within days, the government was on the offensive, seeking to destroy both participants and those who sympathized with the rebellion…PCS supporters in the towns were identified through voting lists and were literally hunted down and killed” (page 204).

Paige 1997:  “The uprising and the subsequent massacre were the defining event in modern Salvadoran political history and in the construction of ruling elite ideology” (page 103).  “There is little doubt that the acute class polarization created by the successful rationalization of coffee production in El Salvador was the root cause of the revolt” (page 105).  “The insurrection was in fact concentrated in those areas in which maximum coffee production overlapped with the maximum concentration of communal land holdings in the past” (page 106).

Tilley 2005:  “(I)n the decades after the Matanza the Salvadoran government dropped racial categories from the census and eliminated racial notations from the civil registry” (page 31).  “As international communism was already a U.S. hobgoblin, crushing a communist insurrection was one way for the new Martínez government to curry favor with the hemisphere’s hegemon.  On the other hand, the U.S. Marines were then still occupying Nicaragua in their effort to crush Sandino’s famous leftist guerrilla movement and the Martínez government was very apprehensive about similar North American intervention to crush communism in El Salvador” (page 143).  “Hence the Martínez government apparently tried to avert an invasion or dreaded U.S. occupation by loudly proclaiming that the communists were already ‘liquidated’…(B)oth domestically and internationally, calling the rebels ‘communist’ was a very handy way for the government to cover for the embarrassment of facing—and brutally crushing—a domestic revolt by its own dreadfully poor and abused citizens” (page 144).  Feliciano Ama “was alcalde del común, elected by the mayordomos of the cofradías as his community’s spokesman to the government” (page 147).

Wade 2003:  “Martínez consolidated power through the centralization of decisionmaking, public works and services; replacing civilians with officers at the municipal and local level; discouraging labor unions, and prohibiting peasant organizations” (page 32).

White 1973:  “The ethnic cleavage between Indians and ‘ladinos’ played a part in the revolt…But the revolt covered areas where the cleavage was already much less strong than at Izalco, and numerous ‘ladinos’ took part.  There was almost no echo of the revolt to the east of Lake Ilopango, either in the Nonualco region or elsewhere.  It was concentrated in the western coffee-growing areas” (page 101).

Wilson 1969:  “The third major test of the traditional liberalism was an Indian rebellion in January, 1932, which was suppressed with the loss of perhaps as many as 30,000 lives” (page 218).  Gives details.

January 25

Lindo-Fuentes 2007:  “By the end of the day on January 25, the rebellion had been put down and the rebel-controlled towns were back in government hands.  The speed with which the rebellion was suppressed proves that the rebels never had the military capacity to challenge the Salvadoran Army in open combat…Whenever the army had time to prepare, its speed and overwhelming firepower resulted in victory.  Those same advantages put the entire peasant population of the western countryside at the army’s mercy during the next two weeks.  The initial defeat of the insurrection was mere prelude to the series of horrifying events that followed” (page 37). 

January 26

Hoopes 1970:  “In stamping out the ‘red scare,’ the government captured the three leaders [Agustín Farabundo Martí, Alfonso Luna, Mario Zapata] and executed them in public on January 26.  That same day, Hernández Martínez refused a benevolent offer of assistance from the U.S. Marines, who were anxiously awaiting the dictator’s invitation to come ashore” (pages 99-100).

February

Anderson 1981:  “When the killing was over, the survivors returned, very subdued, to work once more on the coffee ‘fincas.’  A great quiet settled over the country” (page 25).

Ching 1998a:  “Although probably not aware of the [Communist] Party’s internal doubts and problems, military leaders apparently had an appreciation for its limited role.  At the least, they did not harbour illusions that communists infested El Salvador by the thousands, or that an international communist conspiracy held responsibility for the rebellion.  Instead, they looked to the internal conditions of their country…Shortly after the massacre, the military government began informally to publicise its intention to initiate reforms in the countryside…In his February speech before the Assembly, Martínez proclaimed that the causes of the rebellion would be eradicated if the life of the working class was improved” (page 144).  “Contradicting later impressions that the military waged a campaign against indigenous ethnic identity, the military appears rather to have defended that identity against a more relentless assailant:  the Indian communities’ long-standing ethnic rivals, the ‘ladino’ civil elite.  When the ‘ladino’ authorities regained control of their municipalities after the ‘matanza’ they indeed began a widespread campaign of repression and terror against the Indians” (page 147).

Elam 1968:  “The hardest blow to the [Communist] movement…came with the execution of Augustín Farabundo Martí on February 1…Without his leadership, and with the capture of a number of his lieutenants, the rebel organization broke into discordant factions” (page 39).

Gould 2008:  “’Las listas’ are engraved in the memory of the survivors thoughout the west.  National And Civic Guards carried around long lists of voters who had signed petitions to register the Partido Comunista Salvadoreño (PCS) as a political party in the elections.  In some locales such as Juayúa, they captured and used lists of Socorro Rojo supporters.  Throughout February and March, Civic patrols and the National Guard searched for those PCS supporters, and when they found them they shot them” (page 227).

Holden 2004:  The Legión Nacional Pro-Patria “was organized in February 1932 by Maj. Gen. José Tomás Calderón, who at that time was still commanding the ‘matanza,’ the brutality of which would be felt for the rest of the century.  Calderón’s Legion [was] composed originally of combat veterans of the ‘matanza’ and assigned to identifying and capturing suspected communists” (page 63).

Lindo-Fuentes 2007:  “Mass executions lasted approximately two weeks, and then, just as quickly as they began, they ended.  The military decided that the region was sufficiently pacified, or that whatever message it was trying to deliver had been sent…However, the military supplemented its defenses by creating a civilian defense force called the Guardia Cívica…to guard against further rebel activity” (page 40).  “Every able-bodied male in a town was expected to serve…Guard units remained active throughout the entire western region during the remainder of 1932 and throughout much of 1933 in some localities…Rather than resurgent rebels, the main problem facing the national government in the weeks following the uprising was angry local Ladinos seeking retribution on peasants, and especially Indians.  Civic Guard units were often implicated in the abuses.  The uprising had been a highly personal affair, and the response took on a similarly personal tone” (page 41).  “The repression of 1932 devastated labor and radical organizing in El Salvador.  Although peasants in the western countryside were the primary targets of the counterinsurgency, the army also pursued members of the Communist Party and labor unions.  Many members of the FRTS, PCS, and SRI were killed” (page 194).

Llanes 1995:  “After the rebellion was put down, the government sought to control organizations in the country.  [Protestant] pastors were required to register with the government and obtain government licenses” (page 132).  “Protestants sought to avoid any suspicion by government officials that they were in any way subversive” (page 133).

Leistenschneider 1980:  “(E)n febrero de 1932, se volvieron a practicar [las elecciones municipales]” (page 193).

McClintock 1998:  “After the capture of Martí, the failure of the insurrection, and the brutal killing of more than thirty thousand Salvadorans, the [PCS] was essentially destroyed” (page 49).  “General Martínez’s soldiers joined with local oligarchs’ vigilante bands to massacre about thirty thousand peasants in the coffee lands in western departments of the country; perhaps a mere 10 percent of these peasants had participated in the rebellion…While in part a result of the established tradition of repression by the Salvadoran military, ‘la matanza’ also initiated a more formal military-oligarchy pact in El Salvador:  the oligarchy would cede the benefits of executive office to the military in return for the military’s protection of oligarchical interests” (page 103).

Montgomery 2000:  “The PCS was banned after the uprising, and for the next thirteen years the Pro-Fatherland National Party, a personalist party created by Martínez, became the official—and only—political party allowed” (page 479).

Turcios 2000:  “El lunes 1 de febrero…se cumple la sentencia decretada contra Agustín Farabundo Martí, Mario Zapata y Alfonso Luna Calderón.  Un pelotón los fusila…Unas horas después…la Asamblea electa en enero pasado celebra su primera sesión.  Los dos hechos anuncian una nueva época, forman parte de un proceso al que el ministro de Gobernación llama una ‘transición suave.’…El general Martínez ha movido a sus allegados para que le den legitimidad constitucional a su mandato.  El 4 de febrero de 1932…la Asamblea lo reconoce como presidente constitucional.  Ese día se rompe la trayectoria política de las tres décadas anteriores:  la Asamblea bendice al golpe de Estado, algo que no había ocurrido en los treinta años que tiene el siglo, y a un general en la Presidencia” (page 412).

White 1973:  “Under Martínez, all other political organizations were banned, as well as trade unions…In these acts of repression Martínez was at first supported wholeheartedly by the ruling classes in general, who had been frightened by the rebellion” (page 101).

Wilson 1969:  “The uprising not only realized the worst predictions of social revolution but it vindicated the presidency of General Martínez, then under attack outside El Salvador…The loyalty of the troops and the vividness of the attacks on the established groups served to elevate the military to new prominence…Minister of War Joaquín Valdés asked immediately for the doubling of the Guardia Nacional” (page 229).  “The Church used its resources to work among the rebels and Catholic orthodoxy became a symbol of national loyalty…The merciless slaughter of the Indian insurgents forced the governing groups to reappraise their relationship with the masses.  Although government and elite spokesmen attempted to justify the massacre as a necessary defense of citizens’ lives and property, they could not easily absolve themselves of the social injustice that lay at the root of the rebellion and the mass execution of frightened Indians who were guilty only of fleeing when the government troops reached the towns occupied by the rebels” (pages 230-231).  “Local government, formerly an arena of liberal politics, was centralized after the social revolt of 1932.  The municipalities lost their traditional appropriations for public works projects as funds were channeled through national development programs.  Moreover, Martínez intervened in municipal politics to reduce the towns to dependencies of the national government.  Similarly, the other prominent autonomous corporations of the liberal era, the Indian ‘cofradías’ and the mutualist labor unions, declined in importance with the loss of leadership and the fear of reprisal against alleged subversion” (page 258).

July

Browning 1971:  “After order had been restored, the government hastily legislated a series of reforms.  In July 1932, a special fund, the Fondo de Mejoramiento Social, was created to be used for the provision of cheap housing, the development of ‘general industrialization,’ and a programme of land redistribution” (page 273).

November

Wilson 1969:  “The occurrence of the social uprising at the beginning of the coffee harvest demonstrated the rural laborers’ strategic importance to the export economy.  With a week the government granted amnesty to hundreds of detained men and urged them to seek work on the ‘fincas.’  Upon their release they were issued identification cards as the first phase of an official program called Defensa Social, the registration of all Salvadoran citizens.  As expanded in November, 1932, Defensa Social collected funds from the issuance of the ‘cédula,’ which was required of all adult citizens for employment, identification, and receipt of government benefits” (page 267).

December

Ching 1997:  Martínez “ignored the municipal elections” of December 1932 (page 379).

1933

El Salvador:  background to the crisis 1982:  “In 1933 General Hernández Martínez founded the ‘Mejoramiento Social,’ a broad, general purpose government program…At the same time he banned all trade unions and all political parties except his ‘Pro-Patria’ party” (page 14).

García Guevara 2007:  “ In 1933, Martínez crushed a ‘plot’ that enabled him to weaken some of the country’s most powerful military men including Colonel Aguirre and General Claramount, and appoint loyal officers to high military and ministerial positions” (page 73). 

Gould 2008:  “In 1933 the regime created the Junta Nacional de Defensa Social, which made very modest efforts toward redistributing land and constructing housing for the poor.  In ten years the regime constructed only 253 houses and distributed lots amounting to 29,000 manzanas.  Despite the limited thrust of these measures and a tax reform, Martínez earned the enmity of some sectors of the oligarchy as a result of his concessions to the poor” (page 241).

January

Ching 1997:  Martínez “concentrated…on the deputy elections [of January 1933].  The government intervened only in those municipalities where electoral violence had occurred, or was expected” (page 379).  “For the deputy elections, the government again sent out its list of candidates.  We actually have comprehensive results from these elections.  They reveal that the government’s slate of candidates ran virtually unopposed and won their elections unanimously.  In only four of the 235 voting districts did a second slate of candidates appear on the ballot” (page 380).

July

Ching 1997:  “In July 1933, political tensions increased rapidly when Martínez announced his intention to run for President for the term 1935-39.  Martínez’ decision to run was a reversal of his earlier promise to leave office after the completion of Araujo”s term…[and] alienated the pro-democracy sector” (page 382).  “In July 1933, shortly after announcing that he would run for President in 1935, Martínez founded the Partido Nacional Pro-Patria.  Pro-Patria was created under the guise of serving as Martínez’ political party for the campaign, but in actuality it became the patronage network, the heir to the PND, that Martínez would use to consolidate his political control throughout the entire nation.  In addition to leading the charge on Martínez’ campaign, Pro-Patria was used to control the selection of municipal officials and Deputies” (page 387).  Describes the party organization (pages 387-393).

Krauss 1991:  “Martínez…looked to Fascist Italy and Germany for inspiration and advice…Martínez founded his own Fascist National Pro-Homeland party as the only legal party in the country, and fielded black-shirted militia members organized along the lines of the European Nazi parties” (page 63).

November

Ching 1997:  “It was for the municipal elections of December 1933 that Pro-Patria swung into action and began to gain control over the electoral process.  Roughly six weeks prior to the election, Martínez informed each of his fourteen Departmental Governors that the municipal officials about to be elected must first meet the approval of the Party” (page 393).

Ching 1998a:  “Although the military did not seek to give the Indians political power in the ‘ladino’-controlled municipalities, the military rejected certain ‘ladino’ candidates on account of their abusive stance toward Indians” (page 150).  Describes an incident in “November 1933, when the military was compiling a list of candidates for the forthcoming municipal elections” (page 150).

Ching 2004:  “(G)overnors were to use their contacts in the municipalities to assemble lists of accetable candidates...This selection process was a key moment in the construction of patronage.  Governors, appointed by and already dependent on Martínez, accumulated loyalty from their contacts in the municipalities.  These contacts in turn gathered favors from the candidates.  Everyone in the system owed something to someone” (page 63).

December:  municipal election

1934

Ching 2004:  “Martínez’s rise to power certainly signified an expanded role for the military in politics.  Officers occupied many high-ranking posts once reserved for civilians, including the Ministry of War and departmental governorships.  For instance, in 1930 only two of the fourteen governors were officers, but by 1934 twelve were” (page 55).

Hoopes 1970:  Hernández Martínez “ran as the only candidate in 1934” (page 100).

January

Ching 1997:  “Martínez’ problems with the military peaked in late January 1934, when an attempted coup was discovered” (page 385). 

García Guevara 2007:  “Martínez reacted to another ‘plot’ the following year, and accelerated the process of retaining loyal and removing ambitious men…As a result of this plot, Martínez removed General and future president Salvador Castaneda Castro” (page 74).  “Using the incident to continue martial law, mobilize the propaganda machine, and retain the presidency, Martínez…argued that the people asked him to run for re-election, as the only person who could maintain order in such volatile times” (page 75).

July

García Guevara 2007:  “In July 1934, [Martínez] constructed the Pro-Patria Party for the express purpose of maintaining executive power” (page 75).

August

Elam 1968:  “In August of 1934, the presidency was transferred to General Andrés Ignacio Menéndez, Minister of War, to enable Hernández Martínez to campaign for the March 1935 elections.  According to the arrangement, Menéndez’s first act was to appoint Hernández Martínez as his Minister of War in order to insure his own resumption of that office after the election” (page 51).  “In August 1934, the Partido Pro-Patria was established and given full use of news media for the purposes of winning support for Hernández Martínez” (page 52).

Leistenschneider 1980:  “General Andrés Ignacio Menéndez [gobernó] como Presidente Internino:  del 28 de agosto de 1934 al 1o de marzo de 1935…Cuando el General Martínez solicitó permiso en 1934 a la Asamblea Nacional Legislativa para preparar su reelección, dejó como Presidente Provisorio al General Andrés Ignacio Menéndez y en el Gabinete fue nombrado Ministro de Guerra, Marina y Aviación el Presidente Martínez” (page 199).

December

Elam 1968:  “Preparations for Hernández Martínez’s campaign began in late 1933, though newspapers were prohibited from carrying political news until December of 1934, when the National Assembly belatedly announced the election.  Opposition candidates had little time to campaign” (pages 51-52).

December:  municipal election