Archive | March, 2013

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History

30 Mar
Download Your copy today from Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com. Search William J. Conaway

Download Your copy today from Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com. Search William J. Conaway

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History – A complete History of Mexico. An easy read to learn the incredible history of the Republic from the Conquest until Today. The places, events, and the characters that played out their roles in one of the bloodiest histories ever recorded. Interspersed throughout are accounts of events taking place in the U.S. and the rest of the world simultaneously to give one a sense of the time.

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A Gringo Guide to Mexican History

29 Mar
Download Your copy NOW on Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com. Search William J. Conaway

Download Your copy NOW on Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com. Search William J. Conaway

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History – A complete History of Mexico with historic pictures. An easy read to learn the incredible history of the Republic from the Conquest until Today. The places, events, and the characters that played out their roles in one of the bloodiest histories ever recorded. Interspersed throughout are accounts of events taking place in the U.S. and the rest of the world simultaneously to give one a sense of the time.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History

28 Mar
Download Your copy on Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com. Search William J. Conaway.

Download Your copy on Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com.  Search William J. Conaway.

 

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History – A complete History of Mexico. An easy read to learn the incredible history of the Republic from the Conquest until Today. The places, events, and the characters that played out their roles in one of the bloodiest histories ever recorded. Interspersed throughout are accounts of events taking place in the U.S. and the rest of the world simultaneously to give one a sense of the time.

Third Excerpt – A Gringo Guide to Mexican History

27 Mar

Download "A Gringo Guide to Mexican History," from Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com. Search William J. Conaway.

Download “A Gringo Guide to Mexican History,” from Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com. Search William J. Conaway.

The third Excerpt from my, “Gringo Guide to Mexican History”.

LIFE IN THE STREETS AND PLAZAS OF COLONIAL MEXICO
During the 16th and 17th centuries little was known about the spread of disease and the need for sanitation. The streets were open sewers full of garbage, discarded clothes, dead dogs and cats, broken crockery, and any other disgusting thing that came to hand, all thrown down from the windows of the houses on either side. The masters of the houses lived on the upper floors. The first floor was for animals and servants!

It wasn’t until the 18th century that they began to illuminate the streets and plazas at night. When forced to leave their homes in the dark, the nobles were preceded by their imported Negro slaves carrying flaming torches. Many a poorer resident, coming home in the dark, found himself drenched with unspeakable filth thrown out of an upper story window. (And they tell me México City had no public illumination until 1970!)

The plazas were open air markets full of pig stys, chicken coops, sheep and goat pens, and cows waiting to be milked. There were slaughter houses with no regard paid to the rotting blood that spilled on the paving stones.
Even though the atmosphere was very pious, the private lives of the city’s citizens were not. Prostitution and every other vice flourished, and consciences were eased with large donations to the Church.

Then in the 18th century the colonial cities changed morally and materially. Filthy canals were filled in, streets were paved, public bathrooms were built, water hydrants were provided for the citizens, streets were named and houses numbered, free schools were instituted, bell-ringing was further limited, and public nudity was abolished.

Streetlights were ordered to be provided by the inhabitants of the houses in their doorways and windows. By the end of the 18th and the beginning of the 19th centuries, city police were providing protection for the citizens. In 1722, the first national newspaper was published, and in 1805, the first daily emerged.

Public libraries were opened and the intellectual life of the great city began in earnest, with conversations and discussions in the first cafes that opened along the boulevards.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History

26 Mar
Download Your copy from Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com. Search William J. Conaway.

Download Your copy today from Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com. Search William J. Conaway.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History – A complete History of Mexico with historic pictures. An easy read to learn the incredible history of the Republic from the Conquest until Today. The places, events, and the characters that played out their roles in one of the bloodiest histories ever recorded. Interspersed throughout are accounts of events taking place in the U.S. and the rest of the world simultaneously to give one a sense of the time.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History

25 Mar
Download Your copy Today!

Download Your copy Today!

A second excerpt from my, “A Gringo Guide to Mexican History”.

The Religious Conquest of Mexico
In 1529, Don Juan de Zumárraga, first Bishop and Archbishop of México, wrote in a report to the King:

We are very busy with our continuous and great work in the conversion of the infidels of whom…over a million people have been baptized, five hundred temples of idols have been razed to the ground and over 20,000 images of devils that they adored have been broken to pieces and burned…And…the infidels of this city of México, who in former times had the custom of sacrificing each year over 20,000 human hearts to their idols, now make their offerings to God instead of to the devils…. Many of these children, and others who are older, know how to read, write, sing, and sound the proper pitches for singing…. They watch with extreme care to see where their parents hide their idols, and then they steal them and faithfully bring them to our friars. For doing this, some have been cruelly slain by their own parents, but they live crowned in glory with Christ…. Each one of our monasteries has next to it a house in which children are taught and where there is a school, a dormitory, a dining hall and a chapel for devotion…. Blessed be the Lord for everything….

(You read it, in five short years they had baptized over a million people. The friars had destroyed 500 temples of idols, and 20,000 images of idols!)
Also among the missionaries first chores was to study the native languages and dialects and to compile vocabulary lists and other linguistic guides, and finally, dictionaries to aid them in teaching the natives the elements of faith, preparing them for baptism. And they baptized hundreds of thousands of the Indians they encountered during their lifetimes. They taught the people how to live better, helped them learn trades, and improved their artistic abilities.

These friars walked about barefoot with only their heavy woolen habits to cover them. They slept on the ground and begged for food in the Indian markets, sometimes even eating tortillas with whatever fruits and berries they could gather. The robes they brought with them from Spain were the only clothes they possessed and were soon worn out. (Clothing was a big problem for everyone in those days.) A legend persists to this day:

Don Martín, an Indian Cacique, Chieftan, of the village of Guacachula, seeing the disgraceful condition of his friars robes, sent several skilled artisans out to work for a newly arrived Spaniard who was weaving cloth on his imported looms and selling all he could produce. These spies were able to learn the trade in a short time and carefully took measurements of all the parts of the looms they worked on. Returning to the village they built their own looms and were soon producing sackcloth for the friars as well as for themselves.

The obvious difference between the humble friars and the conquistadores who built themselves fine homes and gorged themselves with all the best, was all too obvious to the poor Indians.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History

23 Mar
Download Your copy on Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com. Search William J. Conaway.

Download Your copy on Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com. Search William J. Conaway.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History – A complete History of Mexico. An easy read to learn the incredible history of the Republic from the Conquest until Today. The places, events, and the characters that played out their roles in one of the bloodiest histories ever recorded. Interspersed throughout are accounts of events taking place in the U.S. and the rest of the world simultaneously to give one a sense of the time.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History – First Excerpt

22 Mar
Download your copy from Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com. Search William J. Conaway.

Download your copy from Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com. Search William J. Conaway.

Excerpts from my, “Gringo Guide to Mexican History”.

Chapter Two

THE CONQUEST
In the 13th century, using religion for political purposes, King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella identified service to the monarchy with the cause of Catholicism, and made Spain into a unified church state.

With the expulsion of the Jews and the conversion of the Moors the Spanish warriors found themselves ready for a new grand adventure. They became convinced that by seeking wealth and glory for themselves they were also serving their God, and their king.

Christopher Columbus, filled with dreams of discovery, conquest, and wealth approached the court of Spain to petition the King and Queen for a commission to sail across the Atlantic to the Indies. After years of considering his proposal they sent him westward in 1492. He sailed in three small ships with 120 men, and was charged as Viceroy, second only to the King, who granted him a 10 percent commission in all that he found.

When news of Columbus’ discovery of the Indies reached Spain it electrified the country. Everyone who wanted adventure or a short cut to a fortune went in search of the glittering prizes he promised.
THE COLONY OF NEUVA ESPAÑA
After the debacle the conquistadores moved to Coyoacan for a few months in fear of the pestilence they had left behind in Tenochtitlán. But soon they began to build their fortresses on the foundations of the Aztec buildings, reusing the same material. Cortés divided the standing buildings around the main plaza, El Zócalo, amongst his captains, and he took Moctezuma’s palace for himself. Several square blocks of the city were rebuilt. The Zócalo was surrounded by government buildings and a church. In the atrium of this first church stood a gallows and a garrote to punish any rebellious Indians. (You can be sure the conquerors made examples of quite a few.)

Labor and material for building these fortress palaces was provided by Indians who worked, as they always had, at the tasks assigned to them. That had, after all, been their lot for generations. The only change in their lives was the color of their master’s skin.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History

21 Mar
Download Your copy on Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com Search William J. Conaway.

Download Your copy on Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com Search William J. Conaway.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History – A complete History of Mexico. An easy read to learn the incredible history of the Republic from the Conquest until Today. The places, events, and the characters that played out their roles in one of the bloodiest histories ever recorded. Interspersed throughout are accounts of events taking place in the U.S. and the rest of the world simultaneously to give one a sense of the time.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican Histroy

20 Mar
Download Your copy on Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com. Search William J. Conaway.

Download Your copy on Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; or Kobo.com. Search William J. Conaway.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History – A complete History of Mexico with historic pictures. An easy read to learn the incredible history of the Republic from the Conquest until Today. The places, events, and the characters that played out their roles in one of the bloodiest histories ever recorded. Interspersed throughout are accounts of events taking place in the U.S. and the rest of the world simultaneously to give one a sense of the time.

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