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Helen and Robert W. Long Collection of Moreno Documents
mssHLG 1-1132  
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This collection consists mainly of the original correspondence (1839-1869) to and from José Matías Moreno (born ca. 1818), with the bulk of it dating from 1850s and 1860s when Moreno was an important agent, merchant, and political figure in San Diego and Baja, California. There is also some later material dealing with the subsequent history of his Rancho Guadalupe in northern Baja, California.
José Matías Moreno was born about 1818 in Baja, California, the son of a Scottish whaler and a Mexican mother. As a youth he participated in various revolutionary movements, and eventually became the secretary to Governor Pío Pico in Alta California in 1845. A strong supporter of Mexico all his life, he fled to Baja California with Pico in 1846 in the face of American forces to continue the fight there against the U.S. After the war he came to San Diego, where he married the natural daughter of Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo, thereby becoming related to many of the major californio families. He was vocal in his opposition to the californios who had backed the U.S. in the war, and defended the interests of his fellow Hispanics in their dealings with American Anglo businessmen. At the same time he acted as an agent, promoting the development of Baja California and soliciting American capital. He was also long active in Mexican internal politics in Baja and served in 1861-1862 as political chief of the border region of the territory for the Mexican government. His frequent extended absences from home resulted in an extensive correspondence with his wife which lasted throughout their marriage until his death in 1869.
Approximately 1,500 items in 26 boxes
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