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A Place to Conspire

CASA DE LAS CONSPIRACIONES1

CASA DE LAS CONSPIRACIONES2

By Jesús Aguado

The building located on the corner of Plaza Principal and Relox was built in 1701. Because of the incline of the street, a mezzanine was constructed. It was here that a military uprising was plotted, which would give the people of New Spain independence from Spain’s yoke.

The building belonged to Domingo Allende, brother of Igancio Allende, and it was in this building where important parties and literary soirees were conducted. These events were frequented by Ignacio Allende, Miguel Hidalgo, Josefa Ortiz y Dominguez, and other conspirators. They conspired to start a civil war to give criollos (a middle-class caste in New Spain referring to Spanish descent mixed with some Amerindian descent) the same rights as the peninsulares (the highest caste in New Spain, consisting exclusively of people born in Spain).

The House of the Conspirators, catalogued as a historical monument by the Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia (National Institute of Anthropology and History), known as  INAH, has original canvas curtains on the windows and original wallpaper and edging; even the brick flooring is original.

During Atencion’s visit by invitation of the owners, we saw the entry door on which are carved several numbers—from 11 to 16—the planned dates in September on which the battle for independence would start. Although the decorations of the period (in that place) are unknown, the family has tried to furnish it with objects and furniture from the 1800s. It has a drawing room with a registry visitors have been signing and making comments in since 1953. The second part has a bedroom.

The proprietors say that the house was acquired directly from the Allende family in 1845, and since then has gone from one generation to the next without sale or purchase. The proprietor is the Sanchez Gonzalez Family. The House of the Conspirators is not open to the public and can only be visited by direct invitation by the family or by special requests.

 

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