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Santa Fe in Santa Fe County, New Mexico — The American Mountains (Southwest)
 

Don Diego de Vargas Zapata Luján Ponce de León, El Marques de la Nava de Barcinas

1643–1704

 

—Resettled New Mexico Twelve Years after Pueblo Revolt of 1680 —

 
Don Diego de Vargas Statue Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, April 13, 2012
1. Don Diego de Vargas Statue Marker
Inscription. Don Diego de Vargas Zapata Luján Ponce de León, born 1643 in Madrid, Spain, served the crown as Governor of New Mexico from 1691–1697 and 1703–1704. Vargas was a devout Christian with a strong devotion to Nuestra Señora La Conquistadora, Our Lady of Peace. Recognized for his competency and talent as a royal official, his arrival in February 1691 at El Paso del Norte as Governor marked the beginning of the critical episode in New Mexico’s restoration, resulting in a remarkable reconciliation with Pueblo Indian leaders such as Luis Tupatú, Domingo Tuguaque, Juan de Ye and Bartolomé de Ojeda. Together these men forged a lasting peace that has endured for more than three hundred years. Vargas’ accomplishments in New Mexico will long be remembered by all generations that follow.
 
Erected 2007 by Caballeros de Vargas in commemoration of their 50th anniversary; founded June 25, 1656. City of Santa Fe. State of New Mexico. A special thank you to Representative Jim R. Trujillo.
 
Location. 35° 41.221′ N, 105° 56.199′ W. Marker is in Santa Fe, New Mexico, in Santa Fe County. Marker is on Cathedral Place north of East San Francisco Street, on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Santa Fe NM 87501, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers.
Don Diego de Vargas Statue and Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, April 13, 2012
2. Don Diego de Vargas Statue and Marker
2006 bronze by Donna Quasthoff is approximately six feet tall (not counting the spear) on a two foot base.
At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Kateri Tekakwitha (within shouting distance of this marker); Sena Plaza (within shouting distance of this marker); Captain Diego Arias de Quiros (within shouting distance of this marker); A Building Stood Here Before 1680 (within shouting distance of this marker); Hitching Post at the End of the Trail (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Site of Santa Fe’s First Chapel (about 400 feet away); Santa Fe Trail (about 400 feet away); End of Santa Fe Trail (about 500 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Santa Fe.
 
Regarding Don Diego de Vargas Zapata Luján Ponce de León, El Marques de la Nava de Barcinas. Marques translates to marquis in English. The title of marquis signifies that the title-holder is a nobleman with a rank above a count and below a duke. Diego de Vargas was the first person to hold the title El Marques de la Nava de Barcinas. It was bestowed by King Carlos II in 1699. The town of Barcinas is no longer in existence but the title is still valid and held at this writing by the 12th Marquis. Barcinas was in what is now the municipality of Iznalloz, in the Andalusian province of Granada in Spain.
 
Also see . . .
1. New Mexico History.org Entry for Diego de Vargas. Excerpt: “Spain's
Detail of the Sculpture image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, April 13, 2012
3. Detail of the Sculpture
rivalry with other European powers, especially France, for control of the Americas raised the reconquest of New Mexico to a very high priority in the early 1690s. Successful reestablishment of Spanish sovereignty would also mean handsome rewards, both financial and social, for the new governor. That success, however, was far from a foregone conclusion. Three previous attempts to reoccupy the Pueblo world had ended in failure.

“Nevertheless, in August 1692, just 18 months after his arrival at El Paso, Vargas led a modest force of less than 200 soldiers, vecinos, and Indian allies north. Following the Rio Grande, don Diego and his expedition found the southern pueblos abandoned, their people having sought refuge in mountainous terrain in anticipation of his arrival. In mid-September, the hopeful reconquerors reached Santa Fe, the former Spanish capital. There, at least 1,000 Pueblo people awaited them.

“After a perfunctory refusal to submit to Spanish rule by the native inhabitants of Santa Fe, Vargas threatened to cut off their water supply. There followed hours of verbal exchange, during which the Pueblos demanded that certain specific settlers not be allowed to return to New Mexico, and the governor consented. Finally, don Diego issued an ultimatum: either submit and be pardoned or undergo an attack by Vargas’ forces. In response, two unarmed
The de Vargas Coat of Arms, Detail of the Sculpture image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, April 13, 2012
4. The de Vargas Coat of Arms, Detail of the Sculpture
Pueblo men left the fortified town to offer peace. They were followed by others, until by nightfall a tense calm existed between the two groups.” (Submitted on August 14, 2014.) 

2. Cathedral Park Vandals Batter de Vargas Statue. 2013 article by Daniel Chacón in The New Mexican. Excerpt: “A fearless Don Diego de Vargas reclaimed Santa Fe from the Pueblo Indians in 1692. But a life-size bronze statue of the Spanish conquistador was no match for modern-day vandals. Since the statue was installed in downtown’s Cathedral Park in 2007, it has been fractured, defaced, sprayed with graffiti and, most recently, nearly knocked off its pedestal.” (Submitted on August 14, 2014.) 
 
Categories. Colonial EraSettlements & Settlers
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on August 14, 2014, by J. J. Prats of Springfield, Virginia. This page has been viewed 325 times since then and 88 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on August 14, 2014, by J. J. Prats of Springfield, Virginia.
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