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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Conditions Governing Use
  • Preferred Citation
  • Immediate Source of Acquisition
  • Biographical / Historical
  • Scope and Contents
  • Processing Information
  • General
  • Existence and Location of Copies
  • Existence and Location of Copies
  • Arrangement

  • Contributing Institution: The Huntington Library
    Title: Pizarro-de la Gasca collection
    Identifier/Call Number: mssPL
    Physical Description: 19 Linear Feet (21 boxes, 2 volumes)
    Date (inclusive): 1537-1580
    Abstract: A collection of material related to Gonzalo Pizarro and Pedro de la Gasca concerning the early history of Peru.
    Language of Material: Materials are in Spanish.

    Conditions Governing Access

    RESTRICTED. Boxes 1-10, 21: fragile. Use digital surrogates, facsimile copies (boxes 11-20) or the two volumes of 19th century transcriptions of the papers. Originals available with curatorial approval.

    Conditions Governing Use

    The Huntington Library does not require that researchers request permission to quote from or publish images of this material, nor does it charge fees for such activities. The responsibility for identifying the copyright holder, if there is one, and obtaining necessary permissions rests with the researcher.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item]. Pizarro-de la Gasca collection, The Huntington Library, San Marino, California.

    Immediate Source of Acquisition

    Purchased from Maggs Bros., 1926.

    Biographical / Historical

    Francisco Pizarro (approximately 1475-1541) and Diego de Almagro (-1538) together conquered Peru for the Spanish crown from 1531 to 1533; the two men were divided by frictions and jealousies which finally led to the execution of Almagro by Pizarro in 1538 and the murder of Pizarro by Almagro's followers in 1541. After his brother's death, Gonzalo Pizarro (-1548) seized control of the government from the new viceroy of Peru, and a period of disorder ensued until Charles V sent his own emissary, Pedro de la Gasca (1493-1567) to Peru to settle the disputes and quiet the rebellion. La Gasca executed Gonzalo Pizarro, repealed the opposed "New Laws of the Indies," and, by offering liberal pardons, won support for the Crown and established civil government in Peru.

    Scope and Contents

    A collection of 946 items from 1537 to 1580, it consists of letters, manuscripts and documents, all in Spanish, documenting the early history of Peru, including Francisco Pizarro's civil war with Diego de Almagro and the pacification of the country by Pedro de la Gasca. It also includes material pertaining to the Catholic Church in Peru; missionaries; the conquest of Chile; the Native people of Peru; and enslavement of Indigenous peoples. There is material regarding the cities of Arequipa, Cuzco, Lima, and Quito. There are letters and decrees of Charles V and Philip II, letters of Gonzalo Pizarro and Francisco Pizarro, reports of Pedro de la Gasca, and Pedro de Valdivia's account of the conquest of Chile. Persons represented in the collection include: Juan de Acosta, Pascual de Andagoya, Francisco de Carvajal, Charles V, Gonzalo Fernández de Oviedo y Valdés, Philip II, Hernando Pizarro, Pedro de Puelles, Pedro de Soria, Cristóbal Vaca de Castro, and Pedro de Valdivia. Also included are paper facsimiles of the original material and two 19th century volumes of transcriptions of the collection (the transcriptions are not in chronological order).

    Processing Information

    Processed by Huntington Library Staff, circa 1930. In 2020, Gayle Richardson created the finding aid derived from a legacy summary report. In 2023, the finding aid was updated to include the restricted boxes 1-10; also, the four boxes of microfilm were removed and discarded.


    Former call number: mssPL 1-946.

    Existence and Location of Copies

    All primary source material in the collection have been digitized and the digital reproductions are available in the Huntington Digital Library. 

    Existence and Location of Copies

    Series 2 is made up of facsimiles and transcriptions of the original material in Series 1.


    Organized in two series: Series 1. Correspondence, documents, and original bindings; Series 2. Facsimiles and transcriptions.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Indians of South America -- Peru -- History -- 16th century
    Mines and mineral resources
    Missionaries -- Peru
    Slavery -- Peru
    Arequipa (Peru)
    Cuzco (Peru)
    Lima (Peru)
    Peru -- History -- Conquest, 1522-1548
    Peru -- History -- 1548-1820
    Quito (Ecuador)
    Letters (correspondence)
    Acosta, Juan de, active 16th century
    Almagro, Diego de, -1538
    Andagoya, Pascual de, -1548
    Carvajal, Francisco de, 1465?-1549
    Charles, Holy Roman Emperor, V, 1500-1558
    Fernández de Oviedo y Valdés, Gonzalo, 1478-1557
    Gasca, Pedro de la, 1493-1567
    Philip, King of Spain, II, 1527-1598
    Pizarro, Francisco, approximately 1475-1541
    Pizarro, Gonzalo, -1548
    Pizarro, Hernando, -1578
    Puelles, Pedro de
    Soria, Pedro de, active 16th century
    Vaca de Castro, Cristóbal, -1588
    Valdivia, Pedro de, 1500?-1554?
    Catholic Church -- Peru -- History -- 16th century