A Grave Fit for Kings,” the Parochial Crypt

510_2007_12_04_San_Miguel_de_Allende_parroqui_2-crypt

By Peggy Jones

Under the altar of the Parroquia de San Miguel Arcángel lies an amazing crypt constructed most likely around 1830 by the famous Mexican Architect Eduardo Tresguerras. An artist, Tresguerras painted the monochrome murals that enhance the walls of the crypt as well. Emperor Maximillian, when he visited San Miguel in 1864, declared the crypt “A grave fit for kings.”

Next week, during Day of the Dead celebrations, the crypt is open to the public. You can descend the well-lit stairway near the front chancel of the church and enter a large chamber. Hundreds of former priests and important citizens of San Miguel are entombed in honor there, some of whom were originally buried in the cemetery that once existed in the courtyard but were moved to the crypt at a later date. In the far corner of the crypt where a flag of Mexico is draped, a former President of Mexico, Anastasio Bustamante, is buried—or at least most of him! By his request, Bustamante’s heart was removed at the time of his death here in San Miguel in 1853 and taken to Mexico City in a crystal flask, to be buried next to his hero, former General, Emperor, and President of Mexico, Agustin de Iturbide.

You can learn more amazing facts about the historic sites of San Miguel by joining Patronato Pro Ninos Historic Walking Tours. We meet in the Jardín, in front of the Parroquia every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 9:45am and depart promptly at 10am. The cost is 300 pesos per person and no reservations are required, although we appreciate advance notice of large groups. Private tours can also be scheduled by contacting Lily at patronatoproninos.org or calling 152 7796. The two-and-a-half hour, mostly level walks are led by knowledgeable volunteer guides, all tours are in English, and best of all, you will be contributing to a great local cause!

The tours all benefit the good work of Patronato Pro Niños, a nonprofit organization that has been providing medical and dental services to underprivileged children of San Miguel and the surrounding rural communities for over 47 years. By joining our tours, your contribution goes 100 percent to help these children!

 

Historical Walking Tour

Every Mon, Wed, and Fri, 9:45am

Meet in the Jardín, across from the Parroquia

300 peso donation

Benefits Patronato Pro Niños

 

 

 

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