Spanish conquest of Honduras

The territory that comprises the Republic of Honduras, one of the five states of the Central America, was claimed in 1502 by the king of Spain after the arrival of Cristóbal Columbus on his fourth and final trip to the New World.[1][2] In March 1524, Gil González Dávila became the first Spanish to arrive in what is now Honduras with the intention of conquest. He founded the villa of Saint Gil of Good Sight, from where he pacified the Indians.[3]

Hernán Cortés, motivated by reports of the wealth of the country, sent two expeditions; one by land and another by sea. He entrusted the first to Pedro de Alvarado, and the second to Cristóbal de Olid. The latter betrayed Cortés' trust, and Cortés set out from Mexico in command of an expedition that lasted almost two years and ended, after many of dangers and deprivations, in Trujillo.[2]

When he arrived in Honduras, Cortés introduced European livestock and founded the city of Natividad de Nuestra Señora, near Puerto de Caballos. On 25 April 1526, before returning to Mexico, Cortés appointed Hernando of Saavedra as governor of Honduras, and left instructions to treat the natives fairly.

On 26 October 1526, Diego López of Salcedo was appointed governor of Honduras to replace Saavedra. The following decade was marked by personal ambitions of individual conquistadores interfering with governmental organisation. Spanish colonists rebelled against one of their leaders, and the Indians rebelled against their overlords, and against their ill treatment.

Salcedo, seeking to enrich himself, clashesed with Pedrarias Dávila, governor of Castilla de Oro, who desired to add Honduras to his own dominions. In 1528, Pedrarias Dávila arrested Salcedo and forced him to yield a portion of the territory of Honduras, but King Charles V rejected the settlement.[4]

After the death of Salcedo in 1530, the colonists became the arbiters of power, installing and deposing governors. As a response to the growing anarchy, the colonists requested that Pedro de Alvarado intervene. With the arrival of Alvarado in 1536, the chaos diminished, and the region remained under authority.

In 1537, Francisco of Montejo was appointed governor. As soon as he arrived in Honduras, he cancelled the land distribution carried out by Alvarado. His captain, Alonso of Cáceres, had been responsible for putting down the Indian uprising of 1537 and 1538, lead by the Lenca ruler Lempira. In 1539, strong disagreements over governance of the region between Montejo and Alvarado attracted the attention of the Council of the Indies. Montejo relocated to Chiapas, while Alvarado became governor of Honduras.[4]


Columbus' fourth voyage

On 9 May 1502, Christopher Columbus set course from Cádiz for America with four caravels and 150 men. The admiral was accompanied by his brother Bartolo and his thirteen-year-old son Ferdinand.[3] On 15 June they arrived in Martinique.[5] On 20 June, Columbus and his crew set course for the island of Hispaniola with the intention of replacing a damaged ship, before continuing with his voyages of discovery. However, the governor Nicolás of Ovando did not allow him enter the harbour, leaving the admiral and his small fleet at the mercy of a raging storm.[5] After this, Columbus sailed along the southern coast of Jamaica.

Afterwards they explored the coast of Darién, until they arrived at the island of Guanaja, which he named Isla de los Pinos (Island of the Pines), some 40 leagues from Yucatán. While anchored off this island, they were approached by a canoe crewed by 25 Indians from Yucatán. Among its cargo of fruits the Spaniards saw cocoa for the first time.[5] Columbus noted that the inhabitants of Guanaja were more civilised than those of the Antilles.[3]

On 14 August, Columbus disembarked at Cape Caxinas, now known as Trujillo.[3][6] This was the first occasion on which Columbus trod land.[5] He claimed possession of the territory for the kings of Spain. After this he sailed southward, exploring the entire length of the coast of Central America, where he discovered the Mosquito Coast, Nicaragua and Costa Rica, continuing as far as Colombia.[3]


Christopher Columbus discovered Honduras in 1502.

According to historian Robustiano Vera, Honduras derives its name from the honduras, or depths, that the first pilots found off its coast, and because when leaving them they exclaimed: "God free us God from these depths!" Before this the Honduran territory had been known as Hibueras or Higueras.[3] Some Spaniards called it "New Extremadura".

In 1858, the North American archaeologist, Ephraim George Squier related in his book The States of Central America that Hernán Cortés, inspired by the news received about the existence "of the vast and heavily-populated realms south of the empire of Moctezuma, he undertook an expedition to Honduras, that at that time was called Hibueras or Higueras."[7]

Likewise, the French geographer Elisée Reclus in 1891 asserted that the name of Honduras dated to the time of its discovery by the Spanish. According to Reclus, Columbus in 1502 braved great danger when he sailed between the capes Caxinas and Gracias a Dios. However, the Frenchman stated that "the current name of Honduras was given to the coast not by Columbus, but by Bartolomé de las Casas, who in his description of the discovery of the West Indies by the Spaniards, spoke of the land of "Hondure", as if this name was of Indian origin". Twenty years later, in the famous expedition of Hernán Cortés across Yucatán, the territory of Honduras was known by the Spaniards by the name of Hibueras or Higueras, and had also been called "New Extremadura".[8]

In his book, Readings to Understand the History of Honduras (2008), the doctor Rolando Zelaya and Ferrera, a prominent Honduran historian and professor, based on the studies of Salomón Sagastume, indicated that it was very likely that the first to use the name of Honduras may have been Juan Días de Solís and Vicente Yáñez, who had accompanied Columbus on his first voyages of discovery, and who in 1508 decided to explore on their own account. Columbus never mentioned the name of Honduras in his reports and journals. His son Hernando Columbus who also accompanied him on his voyages, who described in a biography of his father how Solís and Yáñez gave the name Honduras to what was then known as Cape Gracias a Dios and Point Caxinas, during their voyages of 1508. In many public dissertations, as well as in his book, Rolando Zelaya argues that it is likely that Solís and Yáñez wrongly named Honduras to the fonduras, or anchorages, of the long beaches of the Honduran Caribbean, ideal for the process of navigation known as fondear (sounding) that consists in approaching the coast as much as possible without grounding, so that the crewmen go ashore without need of smaller watercraft. These characteristics of the Honduran Atlantic coast have been demonstrated through several geographic maritime studies that bear out this theory; however, it the only evidence is that opinion expressed by Hernando Columbus.

Antecedents of the conquest of Honduras

Pedro Arias Dávila, governor of Castilla de Oro

Pedro Arias Dávila, better known by the name of Pedrarias Dávila, had distinguished himself as a warleader in Granada and Africa; in Spain he received the title of Governor of the Santa María la Antigua del Darién or Castilla de Oro, that also included the territory of modern Costa Rica. Pedrarias arrived in Central America in 1514, many impoverished noblemen came with him, including Vasco Núñez de Balboa, Hernández of Córdova, Soto, Ojeda, Olid, and Pizarro, among others. Pedrarias established himself in Panama, and from there directed the conquest of further territories to be brought under his control.

On the other hand, Gil González Dávila was appointed at the beginning of the 16th century, counter of the island called Spanish or of Saint Sunday. Before doing charge of his destination, knew in Spain to the pilot Andrés Boy and to Andrés of Cereceda that already had been in Castilla of the Gold.

Gil González Dávila, excited by what explained him these, proposed to the king the discovery of earths in the south Sea. With this proposition, Gil González attained that the king ordered him to the Governor of Castilla of the Gold, Pedrarias Dávila, that delivered him shippings, artillery and ammunitions and 3000 weights, that had been decomisados to Basque Núñez of Balboa, for the trip. Besides it extended him to González, the title of General Captain of the Armed and Cavalier de la Cruz of Santiago.

The expedition split of Sanlúcar de Barrameda on 13 September 1519. Andrés Boy and Andrés of Cereceda accompanied to Gil González. The squadron composed of three shippings and 300 men. Afterwards of his arrive in the Spaniard, González Dávila happened to Darién with the purpose of to cross the isthmus and happen to the Pacific Ocean. In the meantime, Pedrarias already had begun in 1516, the conquest of Nicaragua and Costa Rica by means of Hernán Ponce and Bartolomé Stolen among others.

Castilla Of Gold (or of the Gold) was the name given at the beginning of the 16th century by the Spanish colonists to the territories centroamericanos.

In spite of the real order, Gil González could not obtain the shippings that went of Balboa, by what had to build his own shippings. When finishing the work, Gil González already had lost 120 men, and the crafts resulted defective, by what had to build other fuselages in the Archipelago of the Perlas.

Pedrarias Provided him some help, and like this could Gil González finish the construction of four crafts. It went out of The Perlas on 21 January 1522, but when it had sailed more than one hundred leagues, resulted that the fuselages were quite damaged. It ordered then, the repair of the fuselages and while this occurred, González Dávila had to do an incursion to the interior of the territory centroamericano.

It split, from the current territory of Costa Rica and penetrated in Nicaragua. In his expedition, Gil González attained that some caciques and his villages received them in peace. Besides, it attained that these declared vassals of the king of Castilla and embraced the Christianity. To the Indians that opusieron, did them the war.

On 25 June 1523, Gil González arrived to Panama. There it melted the gold recolectado in his expedition, which rose to more than 90 one thousand weights in gold, in addition to other articles of value. It separated the fifth real and when it had to travel to Saint Sunday and send it to Spain, presented him Predrarias demanding him the delivery of this part. Gil González opuso, and from Name of God evaded to Pedrarias and went out course to Saint Sunday where arrived without any setback.

First expeditions

Gil González Dávila

Hernando of Soto: it Was defeated by Gil González Dávila in Olancho

Once in Saint Sunday, the first that did Gil González was to send to his treasurer Andrés of Cereceda to Spain, with the object to deliver the fifth real, and request in his name, permission of the Court to go out to look for in the north coasts of Honduras the desaguadero of the lake of Nicaragua. Cereceda Gave part of all the sucedido, The king gave by satisfied and conceded the new permission that requested González Dávila. While it returned Cereceda, occupied Gil González in preparing the expedition that went to carry to Honduras.[3]

In March 1524, Gil González Dávila arrived in Port Horses (Honduras). Called like this, because before disembarking, "Gil saw tackled by a horrible tempestad." This gave like result, the death of many of his horses, which "commanded to throw to the water."[9]

After these facts, Gil continued his navigation, until disembarking near cape of Three Tips or Manabique, where founded a population, to which gave him the name of Saint Gil of Good Sight, that was the first that founded the Spaniards in Honduras. (Unfortunately it lasted very little time).[3]

When Gil González occupied in establishing to the banks of the Sweet gulf, and in exploring actively the embrolladuras regions that irrigate the Motagua and the Polochic, by which, thought to find the maritime communication with the south sea. There they did him know some natives, that his territory, was being invaded by the general lieutenant, Francisco Hernández of Córdoba. This, had been sent by Pedrarias Dávila, with order to occupy all the earths, that Gil González had conquered.[10] Pedrarias Argued, have been the first in arriving to these earths, because of some expeditions that he sent in 1516.[3]

Gil González, then gathered immediately his and some native auxiliaries, and left against the usurper. The distance was bigger and the most broken country of what he had thought. Whereas it tripped with innumerable difficulties in the province of Olancho. Córdova Knew his movement and advanced to his meeting in Nagrando.[10]

"There it was expecting and fortificándose. But #prpers having known that Gil happened the saw, goes out to expect it in the country of the Chontales, and finally the two competitors find in Toreba. The crash was encarnizado; Hernández of Córdoba beside his captains: Hernando of Soto, Gabriel Rojas and Francisco Compañón, almost victorious in a first fight, remain entirely defeated the next day, and lose a lot of soldiers, all his horses and ciento thirty thousand weights in gold".[3][10]

"Gil had to pursue it and to subject all Nicaragua to his authority, when they came him to say that an armed Spanish had appeared in Saint Gil" of Good Sight.[10] Interested by this news, prefers to lose the triumph and goes out course north of Honduras.

Cristóbal de Olid

Cristóbal of Olid

The news of the wealths of Honduras had arrived to knowledge of Hernán Cortés, and as already he had concluded his conquest and had brave and unemployed bosses, prepared then two expeditions. One by earth and another by sea. It commissioned the first to Pedro of Alvarado and the second to Cristóbal of Olid.[3]

Olid, hidalgo natural of Baeza or of Linares, and one of the first conquistadores of Cuba, split to course to this island on 11 January 1524 from Veracruz. "There it would receive the helps of a commissioner of Courts to the one who delivered him 7000 weights. In The Habana interviewed with the Governor of the island; Diego Velásquez, the one who was also enemy of Hernán Cortés. Velásquez Advised him to Olid occupy the earth of Honduras for the king and that the benefits that obtained distributed between both".[3][11]

Olid Was persuaded by Diego Velázquez and others and went out to the conquest of Honduras with different plans, to which originally had given him Hernán Cortés.

On 3 May it arrived to Port Horses (today Port Cortés), disembarked and take possession of the country for the King of Spain. In followed founded a villa that called Triumph de la Cruz. Erijió A municipalidad and catered between his the charges of Mayors and Councillors. It divided his Strengths and commanded them recorrer and pacify the villages.

Once that Cortés @darse of the occurred in The Habana, sent to his relative Francisco of the Houses to capture to Olid. When The Houses arrived to the Triumph de la Cruz, enarboló white flag in signal of peace. Olid Did not believe in this and control arm two carabelas with the few people that had remained him and proposed prevent that Francisco of the Houses and his people disembarked. It armed then fight between the crafts, but the strengths of the Houses were very upper, by what Cristóbal of Olid proposed him to this the peace. The square of the Houses separated of this place and had to capture to Olid in the night. In the meantime Olid expected to his people that were in way.

The luck protected to Olid. In the night raised a north recio. The ships of Francisco of the Houses could not put to saved and crashed them in the coast. Olid Fell on the miserable náufragos. It captured to all, afterwards did to swear to the soldiers that would be him faithful and that would help it against Cortés if it tried to subject it. And under this condition left them free, but kept prisoner to Francisco of the Houses. Later, the men of Olid captured in the village of Choloma to Gil González Dávila; to the one who Olid, considered a dangerous competitor. Both, The Houses and González Dávila received of part of Olid, all class of considerations.[3][12]

Murder of Olid

Francisco of the Houses and Gil González Dávila conjuraron then against Olid, but before proceeding The Houses demanded him to Olid that left him split to Mexico, that the would achieve of Courts that left him the government of Honduras, but that did not accept. Robustiano Vera relates the death of Cristóbal of Olid of the following way:

Afterwards of these events, Francisco of the Houses abandoned Honduras, but ántes of his game, founded to Trujillo on 18 May 1525. It split course to Mexico carrying prisoner to Gil González Dávila. Afterwards González attained to escape and went out course to Spain where died. It was Gil González Dávila the discoverer of Nicaragua and conquistador of the province of Honduras, which was him contested by Pedrarias and snatched by Hernán Cortés.

Hernán Cortés

Hernán Cortés

Hernán Cortés never had news of the occurred in Honduras. It feared by the welfare of his prime Francisco of the Houses, by what decided to go in his help. In addition to wanting to personally punish the deslealtad of Cristóbal of Olid. It went out of the city of Mexico on 12 October 1524, by earth and accompanied of two hundred fifty Spanish soldiers of infantry and cavalry, and a body of three thousand auxiliary Indians.[3][9][13]

In this expedition, Cortés and his army experienced a long and suffered trip because of the dense jungles and the big rivers that had to cross, as well as the shortage of supplies. They came by the Petén and Alta Verapaz, and finding finally in Nito, to two leagues of the mouth of the Sweet river or river of Babal, on 20 April, Cortés @darse of the tragic end of the existence of Cristóbal of Olid.

In Nito, Cortés found some sixty men and twenty Spanish women in the most sad situation. Ill, hambrientos and desfallecidos...They fed with cazabe and zapotes, and with some fish that from time to time took in the river. Cortés then, devoted to look for food for these Spaniards and his. Which did satisfactorily.

Of Nito happened to the Spanish colony of Naco north of Honduras. It was not little the admiration and enjoy that had the Spaniards that resided in Naco with the visit of Cortés...They received him with applause, although the arrival of so many guests was not the most timely. This colony also found in a lot of gets anxious about fault of edible. This need was remedied by the arrival of a fuselage of The Habana loaded of groceries, those that Cortés bought to credit and delivered between all.[14]

Afterwards, Cortés shipped with his people and with the Spaniards avecindados in Nito and headed to Port Horses in search of a place to populate in this port. In his "Letter Fifth of Relations" to the emperor Carlos V, Hernán Cortés explains because it chose that place:


Carlos V

Of Natividad, Hernán Cortés happened to Trujillo, where the colonos received it with demonstration of joy, but restless and with some fear, that Cortés imposed them some punishment for having supported to Olid. The neighbours offered him the respective explanations of the case and apologised him to Cortés. This showed satisfied with the explanations, left the past backwards and proceeded to confirm the municipal civil servants in his charges. Like governor of Honduras, appointed to his prime Hernando of Saavedra.[3][9]

When arriving to this villa of Trujillo, Hernán Cortés found that the natives of the populated of Chapagua and Papayeca found "disturbed", due to the fact that the first Spaniards that had arrived to these earths, had carried to a lot of natives like slaves.[15]

Cortés sent to Saavedra to ensure them that the things went to be different. By means of messengers and of interpreters, Cortés treated to do them see the need of the obedience that to the king of Castilla these had to loan, the need to abstain of the thefts and of the human sacrifices. Besides, to explain them the foundations of the Christian religion.

But the natives did not believe them, and went to the hills. Three caciques of the village of Chapagua were captured, and fixed them a term so that they returned to his village. This carried out quickly. However, the ones of Papayeca continued in rebeldía. It gave the situation in which, Pizacura, one of the main caciques of Papayeca was captured. This threw him the fault to his colleague Mazatl, and offering that if they freed it, he could help to the capture of this cacique. Besides it promised that if they hanged it, he would help to pacify to the people and to return to Papayeca. Mazatl Was captured, denied to subject to the requirements of the Spaniards, gave him a slap and the very raging Spanish, tied him a hand backwards and nailed him the another in a tree, by what died without being defended by any of his mates.[16] This event says Cortés, went "a big example for the other; because afterwards some villages that were like this something raised; they came to his houses, and there is not village that no this very safe with his children and women and inland revenues, except this Papayeca, that never has wanted to ensure."[17]

"When Cortés prepared to happen to Nicaragua to end to add it to his commands...It received a letter of Mexico in which it @darse him of the riots occurred after his exit, owing to that supposed that it had died and that his army had been destroyed...It did then call to Pedro of Alvarado that found occupied in the conquest of Guatemala for conferenciar with him. Alvarado Went out in search of Cortés, but when it arrived to Choluteca found with a part of the troop of Cortés and these affirmed him that Cortés already had shipped course to Mexico".[3]


Hernando of Saavedra

Recorded fact by Of Bry: Indians spilling gold in the mouth of Spaniards

"Honduras did not belong under concept any to the government of Castilla of the Gold".[3] It had established by the King of Spain, that this territory depended on the Audience of Saint Sunday, by what was chosen Governor, Diego López of Salcedo".[3] While this arrived to Honduran territory, Hernando of Saavedra remained to charge of the government.

On the other hand, Pedrarias Dávila that Honduras, of whose wealth had big concept, pretended that this territory, formed part of the district of Castilla of the Gold. For this reason, had questions with the Governor, Hernando of Saavedra. Pedrarias Authorised an incursion that in Honduran territory, which carried out the captains: Benito Stolen and Gabriel of Rojas.[3]

Splitting these of Nicaragua with some soldiers and two pieces of artillery, penetrated in the valley of Olancho, and fell on the people situated there by Saavedra, and that it was by those surprised. Directing afterwards to posesionarse of Port Horses; but the governor of Honduras, sabedor of such events, sent strengths to attack the invasores, which were defeated.[18]

Native rebellion

Juan of Grijalva died in Olancho to hands of the natives.

In the meantime the Honduran Indians, exasperados by the cruel abuses, resolved not working, imagining that like this would not have that subsistir the Spaniards and would abandon the country. It did not produce effect this resource; by the contrary, suffered more the aborigines; and then, decided to struggle by his freedom, launched against the Spaniards that had in Port Horses, doing them escape, after having given death to many.[9][18]

Saavedra, knowing that it already had been appointed another person like Governor, remained still in Trujillo, and limited to advise his compatriots defeated, that withdrew to the village of a fellow cacique of the Spanish domination.[3]

"The attack of Port Horses was not an isolated fact." Ciento Fifty caciques, had put of agreement to #finish with the Spaniards; but not to daring to attack of course to the ones of Trujillo, resolved to fall on which were in Olancho...The Indians found the timely occasion to put in execution his project, killed to 15 Spaniards and 20 horses, "finding there also unfortunately, Juan of Grijalva" the first navegante European in putting the feet in Mexican floor.[3]

Diego López of Salcedo

Recorded of Théodore Of Bry for the History of the destruction of the Indians

Afterwards of these events produced in Trujillo the arrive of Diego López of Salcedo. This, put in prison to the governor left by Cortés, Hernando of Saavedra and to his friends. It impounded them his goods and treated them pésimamente". It awarded for himself the best villages of Indians, and did another so much in favour of his friends.[3] His government characterised by the abuses committed against the native.

In 1527, finding in Nicaragua, Pedrarias commanded to Trujillo two councillors de León with a scribe, to intimidate to Saavedra thinking that this still found there.[18] But the envoys of Pedrarias found with Salcedo. Pedrarias Sued through his envoys, obedience like legitimate Governor of Honduras.[3][16]

Salcedo Arrested them and declared that Nicaragua went in in the jurisdiction of Honduras. For this reason, it went out course to this territory with 120 men, leaving to the charge of Honduras to Francisco Cisneros.[3] The Audience of Saint Sunday advised him that it returned to Honduras but did not obey. "It signalled his go through the villages with new vexations and bad deals to the Indians".[3] It arrived to the valley of Olancho with 300 loaded Indians, without mattering him his welfare. The poor Indians had to feed with "grasses".[3] The horses had enflaquecido notably, and to the Indian that treated to escape the to hang.[3] When arriving to Nicaragua, Salcedo apoderó of this territory, without that anybody did him shadow of his authority.[9]

"Pedrarias Wanted then be governor of Nicaragua...It sent to the king", an application under the promise to increase "a lot of wealth for the fisco real".[3] The king accessed to his requests and this achieved the government of Nicaragua. "Done charge of the government, commanded to process to Salcedo, for having exerted the government of the province without real permission".[3]

Pedrarias Kept prisoner by seven months to Salcedo. It soltó Afterwards to having arrived to an agreement, in which Salcedo engaged to pay him 20 one thousand weights in gold. López of Salcedo, defeated, reestablished in Trujillo. To the little time, treated to organise an expedition to the valley of Naco, but died. "They did not be missing suspicions that it had been poisoned".[18][19]


Spanish helmet

Before dying, López Salcedo appointed like his successor, to the counter Andrés of Cereceda. But the colonos of Trujillo were "restless and revoltosos". Those full men of greed, envy and grudges did not accept the nomination of Cereceda, by what gave big riots.[18]

The "revoltosos", affirmed that the government belonged him to Basque Herrera, the one who already had exerted like lieutenant in absence of Salcedo. The "neighbours honoured and peaceful" then proposed that both governed together. And like this it did ; they loaned swearing in the church, but when going out of her, began to scheme the one against the another.[18]

His disputes gave place, to that the Indians observed with care those discords, always attentive and take advantage of the moment to infuriate . On the other hand, in the valley of Juticalpa that housed a population of sixty Spaniards, discovered there some mines and laundry rooms of gold very rich. The native, to those who forced them to work in these works, heaved with frequency and withdrew to the forests, where hid big quantity of gold. But to través, of the good behaviour of the boss of the colony, captain Alonso Ortiz, these appeased and returned.[18]

"In the inmediaciones of Trujillo. Encouraged when seeing the discords of the two governors Cereceda and Herrera, infuriated and escaped to the mountains. It had that it went out Basque Herrera, with some soldiers to treat to reduce them". It pursued them during five months, without any result. Herrera returned to Trujillo tired and dissatisfaction.[3]

Death of Basque Herrera and Diego Méndez

"In that circumstance arose a new element of discord", Diego Méndez. This subject, also had governed to Honduras, when López Salcedo found in Nicaragua. Pretending that his powers were not revoked, believed governor of Honduras. Like this it began to form a plot against the governors, Basque Herrera and Andrés of Cereceda. Herrera declared betrayer to Diego Méndez, and loomed to which helped it, with the penalty of death. Of this way, the colony saw wrapped in new perturbations.[3]

Diego Méndez attained to take refuge in a church, and kept there until the city remained without troops. Afterwards of an insurrection of natives, that forced to Basque Herrera send his troops in pursuit of the natives insurrectos. When going out of the church, Diego Méndez with forty friends assaulted the house of Herrera and murdered it. Afterwards of this event, dragged his corpse until the square.[3]

The incited to riot demanded to Cereceda, that shared the government with Méndez. Cereceda Accepted by fear. "To the 35 days presented the captain Juan Ruano that walked expedicionando against the natives and that had had news of the occurred in Trujillo. Ruano And Cereceda interviewed and decided to undo of Méndez. A night, armed some twenty neighbours, of the most honourable of Trujillo, went to the house of Méndez and arrested it. It instructed him a process, and executed him like usurper of the authority. Cereceda Consolidated in the power and control hang to the friends of Méndez. With this the colony of Trujillo peaceful.[3]

Pedro de Alvarado

Pedro of Alvarado

In 1532 it arrived to Honduras Diego Albitéz, with the purpose to relieve to Andrés of Cereceda. It brought Albitéz an order of Rey, so that "in any way, neither by any case, did Indian slaves, neither had the use of them although they were rebellious." But "Albitez died to the few days of his arrival."[20]

Cereceda Continued in the charge, and his authority robusteció notably. Durante was to the control, devoted to commit a sinnúmero of acts of cruelty against the native population, and there was not in the colony, respect by the authority, by what committed a lot of crimes.

It gave the case where, a plague of smallpox that did big estragos between the Indians. The shortage was terrible and the prices of the articles went by the clouds. This, caused that Cereceda moved the colony to the valley of Naco, leaving abandoned to the residents of Trujillo.

All this situation, exasperó to the people of Honduras. They arrived to the point to request help to the governor of Guatemala, Pedro of Alvarado by means of the treasurer, Diego García of Celis, so that it took part in favour of them. "It attended Don Pedro the application, and resolved to go personally to help them".[9] Once in Naco, commissioned of the control of the province of Honduras in front of the renunciation of Cereceda. Alvarado..."It appointed officials of justice and dictated measured to pacify the country".[9]

Done this, Pedro of Alvarado sent the greater part of his people headed by Juan of Chávez to look for a suitable place where found a populated. Afterwards of an arduous research, in which they had to cross mountains and visit a lot of leagues, the men of Alvarado found a plain whereby crossed a river. When arriving there all exclaimed "Thank heaven" and gave him to the villa this name. Alvarado Delivered the earths between the colonos and control look for livestock and other requests to give him life to the new colony.

After these events, Pedro of Alvarado founded San Pedro Sula.[21] In Thank you, they found rich mines of gold and like result of this, the city prospered notably. Ordered the subjects in Honduras, Pedro of Alvarado shipped in Port Horses course to Spain, around the middle of July, 1536.[22] There it had it had to interview with the authorities and fix his legal subjects, which were not of good account.

Native resistance

Afterwards of the arrival of the Spaniards to the territories of the current Honduras, began to conquer the territory but found with the opposition of the inhabitants of these earths, between them, the lencas, papayecas, mayas-chorties,

Lenca resistance


When the king knew the death of Albitéz, appointed like governor of Honduras to gift Francisco of Montejo, Advanced of Yucatán and that shortly before had left the control of this territory. When having news of the gold discovered in Thank you, control to the captain Alonso of Cáceres, so that in his name, took possession of the control of Honduras.

When arriving to Thank you, Cáceres and his men were resisted by the people of Alvarado that was there installed. They denied to recognise to Cáceres, by what his leaders were reduced to prison. Montejo Rushed his trip and presented with 170 Spaniards between soldiers and sailors and took the control of the province. It began for removing the earths to the people of Alvarado, and awarded them to him to his friends. It expelled to some Guatemalan Indians, that had gone to establish there.

Done this, Montejo commanded to the captain Cáceres to pacify the villages that were insurreccionados. In order of the same Montejo, in December 1537, Alonso of Cáceres founded the villa of New Valladolid of Comayagua. "Depending Honduras of the Real Audience of Mexico, gave afterwards Montejo account to the Viceroy of the state of things of Honduras; but no very verified this, goes back to burst the war in his province".



"The city of Thank you found in the province of Cerquín, that is extremely mountainous. In these mountains lived "miserable" Indians, that recognised by boss, to the cacique Lempira, that was one of the feared by his bravura. The cacique Entepica entrusted to Lempira to organise the resistance Lenca because of the fame of Lempira like invincible warrior, says that in a battle had given death to 120 men with his own hand; that they never had attained to injure it, in spite of his launch and of the dangers in that it had seen surrounded. His subalternos no so alone looked it with respect, but they saw in him something of mysterious"[3]

Lempira Beside 30 one thousand natives Lencas to horse from more than 200 villages offered resistance until Lempira was died manually of the Spaniards directed by Alonso of Cáceres.

"Montejo Sent to his captain Cáceres, headed by a division to which accompanied natural of the country, so that it went it to combat since they did not want to reduce to the obedience. Lempira By his part gathered more than 30,000 Indians and prepared to resist.[23] Of one or another edict beat with denuedo, but already the fight carried more than six months and at all resolved definitively. Him convida then Cáceres to the peace, but the Indian boss does not accept, as it wants the freedom of his country". Cáceres In his wish to #finish with Lempira, occurs then to the betrayal".[3][24] The historian, Rubustiano Vera relates the death of the cacique Lempira:

Benito (gentleman of Silca)

Benito (gentleman of Silca), went a cacique lenca, his society the zone where today is the department of Olancho, afterwards of the arrival of the Spaniards, in 1526 resisted the strengths of Diego López of Salcedo. They struggled until Benito was captured, sent to Nicaragua like prisoner and launched to a jauría that gave him death.

Chorti resistance

In time of the conquest, Copán Galel was the king maya-chortí of what at present is the Honduran population of Copán Ruins (where spoke and still speaks the language chortí which is a language maya). In 1530, Pedro of Alvarado sent to a group of miltares Spanish led by Hernando of Chávez and Pedro of Amalín to conquer the village chortí. Hernando of Chávez led the attack against the city of Copán, which was defended by a native army composed of native soldiers from Sinsiniti, Zacapa, Ostúa and Güijar, led by Copán Galel; during the battle the Spanish Juan Vásquez of Osuna opened a brecha in the defences of the city with which the Spaniards conquered the city of Copán.

Papayeca resistance

They lived in the vicinities of the current Trujillo, his cacique was Mazatl, in 1524 was captured and hanged in Trujillo by the troops of Hernán Cortés. Afterwards of this his cacique was Pizacura, the one who later was captured by Hernán Cortés in 1524 since it wanted that they left to inhabit the saws to inhabit populated and serve them, Pizacura said to the translator that did not leave the saws because it was with his village and did not want to leave them, was soltado.

The natives infuriated headed by the cacique Pizacura, confronted to the Spaniards and captured 100 people, by what moved the capital from Trujillo until the valley of Naco where founded the new capital, the villa of Santa María of the Good Hope.

Tolupan resistance

The village Tolupan lived in the zone of the river Ulúa and the valley of Sula, his king Cicumba opuso resistance to the Spanish forces, fought against the forces of Pedro of Alvarado in 1536.

Pedro of Alvarado fought beside 80 Spaniards and 300 natives in the zone of the river Ulúa and the valley of Sula, believes confronted where today finds the Hill Palenque. Tolupan resistance was defeated and put prisoner beside the king Cicumba and left them die by hunger.

Annexation of Honduras to Guatemala

Statue of Francisco of Montejo in Mexico, beside his son

Pedro of Alvarado went out well in his management in front of the court of Madrid. It allowed him continue in exercise of the government of Guatemala by seven years more.[3] To his return, disembarked in Port Horses with his troop in a trip that demoró like twenty-five days. Of there it went out for San Pedro Sula with course to Graces.

Before arriving there, gathered with the elect bishop, Cristóbal of Pedraza. This, had been appointed by the Spanish government, to mediate between Alvarado and Montejo. Montejo There was desposeído to the people of Alvarado of his earths, in addition to having to resolve the situation on the government of Honduras.[3]

Both governors gathered in Thank you, and arrived to an agreement on the dispute of Honduras. Pedro of Alvarado yielded him to Montejo the government of Chiapas and entrust them of Suchimilco in New Spain, having to besides Alvarado pay two thousand weights that Montejo was due to several people in Honduras.[25]

Pedro of Alvarado wrote him to the king and exposed him, the suitability that the government of Honuras was joined to the one of Guatemala. Alvarado Ensure him to the King that Honduras could give more than one hundred one thousand weights by year to the real treasure, since at all it produced in the state, in that it found .[3]

Francisco of Montejo by his part, also wrote him to the king, "but in his letters, accused of partial to the Bishop Pedraza and says him that only yielding by force had left the government of Honduras, that Alvarado with his arrival all has revolved it and asks him that it do not approve the agreement. It gave him more credit to Alvarado and the King against the asked by Montejo approved said agreement and then the government of Honduras attached to the one of Guatemala".[3]


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  2. 1 2 Jalhay, Henry, ed. (1899). Monthly Bulletin Bureau of The American Republics Washington D.C. Retrieved 19 January 2011.
  3. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 Vera, Robustiano, ed. (1899). Apuntes para la Historia de Honduras. Santiago, Chile: Imp. de "El Correo". Retrieved 3 January 2011.
  4. 1 2 Girot, Pascal (1994). The Americas. Greenwood Press. pp. 284–285. ISBN 0-415-08836-4. Retrieved 27 January 2011.
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  8. Reclus, Elisée (1891). Mexico, Central America, West Indies. The Earth and Its Inhabitants, North America. 2. D. Appleton and Company. p. 255. Retrieved 30 December 2010. But its present name was given to the seaboard not by Columbus, but by Bartholomew de las Casas, who in his Discovery of the West Indies by the Spaniards, speaks of the land of "Hondure," as if this name were of Indian origin.
  9. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Gomez Carrillo, Agustin, ed. (1892), Compendio de la Historia de América Central (in Spanish).
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    Alamán, Lúcas Ignacio J., ed. (1844). Disertaciones sobre la historia de la república Megicana, desde la época de la Conquista (in Spanish). 2. Mexico: José Mariano Lara. Retrieved 19 January 2011.
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