Archive | May, 2015

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History

15 May
Download on your phome, tablet, or PC at: Amazon.com; Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

Download on your phome, tablet, or PC at: Amazon.com; Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History – A 354 page, 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 simultaniously to give one a sense of the time. GG-103 – $24.95 plus $19.95 International S&H. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com; or Google Play for a considerable discount.

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A Gringo Guide to Mexican History

13 May
Download on your phome, tablet, or PC at: Amazon.com; Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

Download on your phome, tablet, or PC at: Amazon.com; Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History – A 354 page, 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 simultaniously to give one a sense of the time. GG-103 – $24.95 plus $19.95 International S&H. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com; or Google Play for a considerable discount.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History

12 May
Download on your phome, tablet, or PC at: Amazon.com; Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

Download on your phome, tablet, or PC at: Amazon.com; Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History – A 354 page, 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 simultaniously to give one a sense of the time. GG-103 – $24.95 plus $19.95 International S&H. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com; or Google Play for a considerable discount.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History

11 May
Download on your phome, tablet, or PC at: Amazon.com; Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

Download on your phome, tablet, or PC at: Amazon.com; Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

An 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

9 May
Download on Amazon.com; Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

Download on Amazon.com; Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History – A 354 page, 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 simultaniously to give one a sense of the time. GG-103 – $24.95 plus $19.95 International S&H. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com; or Google Play for a considerable discount.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History

8 May
Download on Amazon.com; Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

Download on Amazon.com; Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History – A 354 page, 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 simultaniously to give one a sense of the time. GG-103 – $24.95 plus $19.95 International S&H. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com; or Google Play for a considerable discount.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History

6 May
Download on Amazon.com; Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

Download on Amazon.com; Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

A Gringo Guide to Mexican History – A 354 page, 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 simultaniously to give one a sense of the time. GG-103 – $24.95 plus $19.95 International S&H. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com; or Google Play for a considerable discount.

Walking tours of Puebla de Los Angeles

5 May
Download on Amazon.com; Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

Download on Amazon.com; Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

Walking tours of Puebla de Los Angeles –

Including the complete story of “Cinco de Mayo.”

A book of the History, Legends, and Step-by-Step instructions for touring this 460+ year old Spanish Colonial city. The legends are authentic, and have been handed down generation after generation.The book has lots of historic and full color pictures, and is suitable for saving as a souvenier. WT-106 $14.50 Plus $6.95 Int. Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com; or Google Play for a considerable discount.

Walking tours of Puebla de Los Angeles

2 May

Download to your phone, tablet, laptop on Amazon.com, Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com (now includes sony Readers) and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

Download to your phone, tablet, laptop on Amazon.com, Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com (now includes sony Readers) and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

Walking tours of Puebla de Los Angeles –

Including the complete story of “Cinco de Mayo.”

A book of the History, Legends, and Step-by-Step instructions for touring this 460+ year old Spanish Colonial city. The legends are authentic, and have been handed down generation after generation.The book has lots of historic and full color pictures, and is suitable for saving as a souvenier. WT-106 $14.50 Plus $6.95 Int. Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com; or Google Play for a considerable discount.

Walking Tours of Puebla de Los Angeles

1 May
Download to your phone, tablet, laptop on Amazon.com, Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com (now includes sony Readers) and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

Download to your phone, tablet, laptop on Amazon.com, Amazon.com.mx; Barnes and Noble.com; Kobo.com (now includes sony Readers) and on Google Play. Search William J. Conaway.

An excerpt from my, “Walking Tours of Puebla de Los Angeles.”

Walking Tours of Puebla de los Angeles
Copyright William J. Conaway, 2009

The city of Puebla, capital of the state of the same name, is located in the large, high altitude, Puebla Valley, that connects to the Valle de México, 80 miles southeast of Mexico City. It is one of the oldest Spanish Colonial cities, founded in 1531, on a site not previously occupied. Legend has it that a band of angels appeared to Bishop Julian Garcés pointing to the location of the future city.

Puebla is renown for its distinctive Spanish Colonial architecture, and UNESCO designated it a World Heritage City in 1987. A truly Spanish Colonial city of imposing civil architecture next to centuries old churches. The Spaniards, with the aid of native artisans, left behind a magnificent architectural legacy. A National Monument.

Four volcanoes, the highest peaks in México, are visible, on a clear day, from the city: Popocatépetl (17,883 ft.), Iztaccihuatl (17, 338 ft.), La Malinche (14,632 ft.), and Citlaltépetl or Pico de Orizaba (18,855 ft.). Popo, as it’s affectionately called, is an active volcano occasionally spewing smoke and ash.

The city is officially known today as Puebla de Zaragoza, named for the General Ignacio Zaragoza, who successfully defended the city against the French Imperial Army on May 5, 1862. It is an important link between the Gulf Coast and Mexico City even today. An important agricultural, commercial, and manufacturing center. The population, as determined by the 2000 census, was 1,346,000 souls.

Getting there: Wherever you are go to Mexico City, to the Terminal Norte, and take the ADO bus to Puebla. It’s that easy. Don’t drive. It’s not worth it. Too much traffic, and no place to park. There are hundreds of perfectly adequate hotels, but I recommend the Hotel Colonial. It’s right beside the Church of the Company of Jesus, and one block from the Zócalo.

(Interspersed with the history and the walking tours of the city I have included some of the legends. The legends will be inserted at the place where they occurred, and will appear in italics.)

Puebla’s main Plaza, called the Zócalo, is the cultural, political, religious nucleus of the city and our tours will begin from there. The tree filled Plaza is flanked with beautiful, old colonial buildings, and graced with iron benches and a large fountain. The surrounding streets form a grid pattern adhering to the Spanish Colonial ‘blueprint.” The vivid talavera tile, evident throughout Puebla, was a craft brought here from Talavera de la Reina, a Spanish city near Toledo, Spain, and is produced here to this day.

Here, right on the square you can find a Burger King, a Carl’s Jr., and around the corner a KFC. And all around the place are coffee shops of The Italian Coffee Company. What you won’t find are the usual junk shops for tourists. Puebla’s visitors are mostly here on business. The tourists I did see were mostly European.

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