Reform and Insurrection in Bourbon New Granada and Peru by John R. Fisher, Allan J. Kuethe, Anthony McFarlane

By John R. Fisher, Allan J. Kuethe, Anthony McFarlane

Publication by means of Fisher, John R., Kuethe, Allan J.

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29. Restrepo, Minas de Colombia, 242. "" The audiencia promptly denounced D’Elht'1yar to Spain, urging the crown to suspend the mining mission in view of his questionable associations. “ Without D’Elhi'iyar’s leadership, the mining operations quickly deteriorated. Ezpeleta tried to locate a private owner for the mines with the hope that someone would be able to exploit profitably the vast riches that supposedly existed in them. ” D’Elhuyar died soon afterward, without ever ridding himself of his legal and political problems, though his difficulties arose through association only.

In this process, the elites played a role of unquestionable importance. During the final decades of the eighteenth century, the elites were the main catalyst in the social and economic processes that led to the destruction of the Spanish colonial system and the establishment of the new republics in the early nineteenth century. This transformation did not, however, eliminate all colonial structures. On the contrary, the same groups that had monopolized political power before independence remained in power afterward.

26. Francisco Gil y Lemos to Antonio Valdés, Cartagena, February 28, 1789, and Santa Fe, May 15, 1789, AGI, SF, leg. 838. 'l'he llourhon Mining Reform in New Granada O 51 pended. And although Ezpeleta cautiously permitted activity to be resumed after his interview with D’Elhi1yar, the reform mission plainly operated on shaky ground. 27 After years of delay and labor and weather problems, the mining mission produced its first silver in 1791. Ezpeleta, however, had grown increasingly skeptical about the worth of the mines and their director as well.

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