The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 106, July 2002 - April, 2003 Page: 205
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josi Bernardo Gutirrez de Lara
States. Clearly, he believed that similar achievements were possible once
Mexico freed itself from Spain.24
While in the East, Gutierrez broadened his political perspective by
meeting with several Hispanic-American revolutionaries, including Jos6
Alvarez de Toledo y Dubois, a Cuban then living in Philadelphia. The lat-
ter had recently served as a delegate from Santo Domingo to the Spanish
Cortes, the assembly that had first gathered on September 24, 1810, to
meet the dual crisis of French occupation and American revolt. Toledo
reacted angrily to the Spanish delegates' condescension toward colonials.
He chose the path of revolution instead of constitutional reform. Fleeing
Spain by July 1811, he soon declared his support for "the liberty and ab-
solute independence of the continent and islands of the hemisphere of
Col6n [Columbus]: I am an American."25
As a newcomer to diplomacy, Gutierrez was awestruck by his first en-
counters with Toledo during the winter of 18 11-1812. The latter was not
only broadly educated and experienced, but also had a rhetorical gift for
revolutionary politics. On October 1, 181 1, Toledo published a pamphlet
in Philadelphia urging Mexicans to renounce monarchical government
as contrary to both natural right and the Bible. He cleverly adapted his
broadside for a religious audience by placing three crosses at the top, with
the names of Jesus, Maria, and Jos6 directly underneath. He then called
upon insurgent generals to expedite the formation of a junta gobernativa
consisting of representatives elected from all the councils (ayuntamientos)
of towns, localities, and cities then under republican control. Additional
communities would gain a voice in the junta as American armies seized
more territory from the enemy. Through this means, Spanish tyranny
would yield to "the peace and sweet harmony that always reigns among
Toledo helped to provide Guti6rrez with a sophisticated rationale for
his own burgeoning republican beliefs. Indeed, the latter was so taken by
Toledo's pamphlet that he boldly signed his own copy. Similar to Gutidr-
rez, Toledo had to imagine what could be achieved for Mexico from his
distant lodgings in the East. His scheme of government was not unique,
2' DiarnoJGB, Dec. to (quotation), 181 1,Jan. 10o, 1812 (Quotation from entry of Dec io: ".. y
todo este vien [i.e., bien] le resulta a esta Naci6n por el buen Govierno que tiene! O, Cuanto di-
jera .."). See also Guedea and Rodriguez O., "How Relations between Mexico and the United
States Began," 19
2' Gutierrez copied this passage from a letter that Toledo pubhshed in English in a Philadelphia
newspaper. See DiarioJGB, Dec. 23, 1811. (Quotation: "Sobre todo, yo deseo la livertad y la m-
dependencia absoluta de todo el continiente e Islas del hemisferio de Col6n: Sol Americano").
"'Jos6 Alvarez de Toledo, Mixzcanos . (Philadelphia: n.p., 1811). For Guti6rrez's enthusiastic
response to Toledo, see DiarioJGB, Dec, '7, 1811. Born in Havana, Toledo studied at the Escuela
Naval de Caidiz and later fought against the French. See Harris Gaylord Warren, "Jose Alvarez de
Toledo's Initiation as a Fihbuster, i811-1813," Hzspanwc American Histoncal Remvew, 20 (Feb.,
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 106, July 2002 - April, 2003, periodical, 2003; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101223/m1/257/: accessed October 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.