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An important Hacienda in the State of Michoacan

Finely executed map of a portion the Hacienda de San Bartolo, on the south shore of Lake Cuitzeo, north of Morelia in Mexico.

The Hacienda San Bartolo is located in the town of Álvaro Obregón (Michoacán). Dating from the 18th century, Álvaro Obregón was created around the hacienda as a result of the agrarian reform at the beginning of the 20th century. Currently the former Hacienda is still standing and functions as offices of the Municipal Presidency.

The Hacienda was built in a neoclassical style on top of a hill. The main house has two levels, its main facade has a portal on its first level and balconies on the second, inside there is a quadrangular home with arches of half point. It has a chapel dating from 1836 separated from the house, located in a small square in front of the property. 

Hacienda de San Bartolo

Throughout the Colonial period, Michoacán, like other regions of New Spain, experienced changes in agricultural production patterns due to the introduction of new crops, the use of draught animals and livestock farming. Production units were established in places with favorable natural conditions, mainly devoted to agriculture and livestock production. The Lerma River basin is one of the most agriculturally productive natural regions in Mexico. Lake Cuitzeo stands out in this basin, a region considered as a sub-basin of the Lerma, where there are several valleys such as Tarímbaro, Queréndaro. Tiripetío and Guyangareo-Morelia, among others. In this natural space arose the hacienda de San Bartolo, in the center of the present state of Michoacán, near the city of Valladolid. Today Morelia. 

The hacienda de San Bartolo appears as an agricultural and livestock producer in the descriptions of the bishopric of Michoacán dating from the time of Bishop Francisco de Aguiar y Seixas, in the final decades of the 17th century 

The Hacienda was described by Frances Erskine Inglis, Madame Calderón de la Barca, who traveled through Michoacán between November 16 and December 14, 1839. Madame Calderón de la Barca describes this productive unit as "an extensive and magnificent hacienda belonging to Don Joaquín Gómez. of Valladolid (Morelia)." She states that: “ the house is one of the most beautiful and welcoming that I have ever seen: but we saw on the way a large stone building that the owner of San Bartolo is building for someone of his family, which if he fulfills his plan, when it is finished it will be a palace.  

She adds that the main product is sweet pepper and spicy pepper (chili). In his narrative she describes some of the activities and premises that constituted the hacienda: "We spent the morning touring the hacienda, watching how they made cheese, visiting the chapel, the splendid barns built of saddlery, the large mills..." The traveller's story reveals an important architectural and productive complex near the city of Morelia, from which it was only "six leagues of horseback." In addition, she describes it as a "fertile and forested territory" with a very good road. 

After the Mexican Revolution, the Agrarian Reform brought about transformations that gave rise to a new composition of the territory. Upon assuming the government of the state of Michoacán in 1928. Lázaro Cárdenas expressed his interest in solving the problems of the countryside, in boosting agriculture and thus fulfilling the promises of the Mexican Revolution: his actions were aimed at making ejidal endowments and expansions. Francisco José Múgica, in his report on the agricultural question, stated that: The agrarian problem is one of those to which the current administration has devoted the greatest activity, as a consequence of the fact that agrarianism is surrounded by an indestructible hollow wall formed by the clergy and landowners with the support of militarism.  The large property in Michoacán resisted Cárdenas the governor, but not Cárdenas as president of Mexico a few years later, starting in 1934. The hacienda suffered the impact of the Cardenas actions: the buildings and productive areas were abandoned, looted and occupied by groups of ejidatarios. As a result of the disintegration, new human settlements were formed, in most cases taking over the structuring spaces of the old hacienda.  

Luis Iturbide was a Teniente de Ingenieros (Lieutenant of the Engineers) at the Colego Militar, Castillo de Chapultapec.

Condition Description
Minor soiling and dampstaining.