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Manuscript Plan and Calculations of a Land Dispute on the Site of one of Mexico's Largest Textile Mills

This plan depicts the lands of the Hacienda de San Diego Metepeque, or Metepec, in the modern state of Puebla. It is backed with tables of distances and an explanation about the survey. As with so many surveys in colonial Mexico, it was conducted to settle a dispute over land.

The west-oriented plan is cleanly drawn, with roads and rivers and hills drawn out. The largest plot of land, belonging to the Hacienda de Metepeque, takes up the center of the survey and is marked with red boundaries. A smaller area below the main survey is the area under litigation and is marked with letters which refer to landmarks used during the survey. The area is flanked by hills to the west and east and touches upon a river, called here the Atollaque.

On the reverse of the plan are two tables and an explanation of the plan. The first table, to the left, is a description of the bases, perpendiculars, mid-perpendiculars, and area of the 19 triangles used in the survey. These triangles pertain to the Hacienda de San Diego Metepeque. A similar table, to the right, explains the same measurements for the 12 triangles pertaining to the disputed land.

The dispute was instigated by a Don Manuel Florencio Martinez and involved a Señor Marquez de Santa Marta. Unfortunately, little information survives about the dispute. However, the Hacienda of San Diego Metepec would go on to some prominence as the site of a textile mill, one of the largest in Mexico, in the late nineteenth century. Together with another local mill, El León, the Metepec mill made Atlixco (Atlisco on this survey) a center for textile production.

Transcription of explanation:

Deve tener la Hac/da de Methepe, Yn citio de estancia para Ganado Men or, y quatro Cavallerias de Tierra; y contando otra estancia de [word blacked out] diez, y ocho cavallerias, deven ser todas, veinte, y dos cavallerias, cuya área plana se compone de Trece quentos, quatrocientoas, seis mil, novecientas, setenta y seis varas quadradas…………13.4 06.976

Importa la Tierra de Methepec, con inclucion de la Litigiosa…12.593.500

Se le restan a Methepec…00.813.476

Se compone una cavalleria de…00.609.408

Este [word rubbed out] es de como un Tercio…00.204.068

Se que se deduce: que aun dándolo a Methepec la Tierra litigiosa se le restan para la complemento de la Estancia de Panado menon(¿), y quatro cavallerias, ante mencionadas, una cavalleria, y un tercio de otra.

[in another hand and ink] Litú Sre Trerras En Mexico/y Cartas y tan q. de Monlloa

Text on the verso can be viewed here: /gallery/detail/49528baa

Condition Description
A few minor wormholes at the bottom of the image
Jeffrey Bortz, Revolution within the Revolution: Cotton Textile Workers and the Mexican Labor Regime, 1910-1932 (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2008) 42.