¡Por la Patria, Viva México Fuerte! A Mexican TL Mk. II

Part I: Fight for Independence
Hey y'all! It's been quite a while since I posted anything. Life's been kinda fucking nuts...but I won't get into the minutia of it all as I can imagine I'd only be singing along to the choir...and in that regard I hope you all and your loved ones are doing well and staying safe. Anywho, roughly a decade ago I began my first, and thus far only timeline on a stronger Mexico. I got as far as the 1880's but as I read a lot of my earlier material, I felt I left out a great many details, and that clarity has made me reconsider the path and trajectory I originally had the TL make. Not to mention , my writing was simply atrocious!!!

I'm going to try my best to stick as close as I can to the original TL, but at the same time I hope these new changes I have in store enhances the story. So without any further ado!

¡Por la Patria, Viva México Fuerte!


-“My fellow citizens of the Republic, on this most hallowed of occasions, I ask of you all to remember and honor the sacrifices the founders of our great nation made to make us proud to be Mexicans. On this, the Bicentennial of our independence let us all continue to build a just and free society, a society which respects the rights of all peoples and a society that strives to promote life, liberty and the common good of all.”
-President Patricia Jimenez Elba
(Excerpt translated from the El Sol de México, September 16, 2010)

-"Long live Fernando VII! Long live America! Long live religion, and death to bad government!"
-Father Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla
(Reported final appeal of the "original" Grito de Dolores, September 16, 1810)

Part I
Fight for Independence


The Querétaro Conspiracy

At the dawn of the 19th century, a group of like-minded individuals, prominent among them Ignacio Allende and Juan Aldama, Captains in their regiment of the Queen's Provincial Dragoons, the Corregidor of Querétaro Miguel Dominguez and his esteemed wife Josefa Ortiz de Dominguez, and the famed eccentric priest Father Miguel Hidalgo formed the core of a conspiracy to bring about an end to colonial rule of New Spain. Inspired by the philosophical though of the Enlightenment, as well as the recent eruptions of revolution in the United States, France and Haiti, the group of conspirators frequently met at various safehouses across the Bajío where they discussed politics and contemporary events, and upon recognition that the Viceregal government had failed to properly respect the rights of its colonial subjects, a consensus for greater autonomy and reform was agreed upon by the members of what became known to posterity as the Querétaro Conspiracy.

As Spanish control over its empire deteriorated, culminating with the Napoleonic overthrow of King Fernando VII in May 1808, the time for the conspirators to act seemed eminent. In México City, the predominantly criollo Ayuntamiento rebuked the newly installed King of Spain, Joseph Bonaparte, and amongst the sympathetic overtures to their deposed Bourbon monarch the Ayuntamiento proposed the formation of an autonomous representative government charged with administering New Spain in the name of King Fernando VII. [1] While Viceroy José de Iturrigaray gave his assent to the plan, the conservative and peninsular-led Audiencia rejected it outright. Over the course of the summer criollos continued to agitate for autonomy, with both the Ayuntamientos of México City and Veracruz issuing demands to allow the formation of a junta and the convocation of a congress, but the Audiencia continued to oppose all appeals for reform, arguing that it was not New Spain's place as a colony to dictate the terms of its relationship to the crown. Events culminated in September when an armed mob of roughly 500 landowners and merchants, lead by members of the Audiencia and the Archbishop of México City, orchestrated a coup d'état against Viceroy Iturrigaray and conducted a mass arrest of prominent criollos across the city. With New Spain now, for the moment, under their firm control, the Audiencia installed the old and frail Field Marshal Pedro de Garibay as their rubberstamp Viceroy where he served for a little under a year. In July 1809 he was replaced with the Archbishop, Francisco Javier de Lizana y Beaumont. Both men proved utterly inept and incapable of stemming the tide of unrest and in May 1810 the Audiencia relieved Lizana y Beaumont from his Viceregal duties, in the end opting to rule the colony directly until the new Viceroy, Francisco Javier Venegas, assumed power that following September.

By late spring of 1810 it had become abundantly clear that the Spanish government, despite British military aid, was on the verge of total collapse. With support and cover provided by Corrigedor Dominguez, the conspirators in Querétaro and Guanajuato began to assemble armaments, clandestinely recruit supporters, and even go as far as draft the outline of a new government. By the start of summer the conspiracy was in full swing and the date was set for December 8 as the planned start of the uprising, but as several weak links in the Conspiracy betrayed the movement to the Audiencia in August and September, the conspirators were forced to move the start of the uprising to October 1. Events then took an unexpected turn on the evening of September 14 when a rebel priest by the name of Manuel Irriaga bacame gravely ill and during a deathbed confession revealed the conspiracy's existance to his attendant peninsular priest, which precipitated the arrest of Miguel Dominguez and several other conspirators the following day. Despite being confined indoors for her safety, Miguel's wife Josefa alerted her neighbor and fellow conspirator Ignacio Pérez of what had transpired. Without a moment to spare the elderly Pérez embarked on a 40-mile horseride through the night to San Miguel el Grande, where Allende and the Aldama brothers were alerted to the Conspiracy's betrayal. With very little time to spare, Allende and the two Aldamas in turn rode north toward Dolores in order to warn Father Hidalgo.


The conspirators set the plan into motion, September 16, 1810

Upon arriving at Dolores in the early morning hours of September 16, Allende and his retinue awoke and informed Hidalgo about the course of events in Querétaro. At this point Hidalgo decided the time had come to set the plan into motion. Aided by laborers, parishioners and other local townsfolk, Hidalgo apprehended the Spanish Priest, Father Bustamante, and imprisoned him along with other known Spaniards. As the central plaza in front of the church Nuestra Señora de los Dolores filled with several hundred people, Father Hidalgo issued an impassioned call to arms in defense of King and country and against French invasion. Hidalgo, Allende and Aldama, along with four thousand rebels (mostly indians and mestizos), occupied San Miguel el Grande where Allende’s regiment of the Queen's Provincial Dragoons soon joined the rebel cause. After a heated dispute between Hidalgo and Allende on who should take military command of the Insurgent army, Hidalgo reluctantly conceded to Allende's position and followed the Conspiracy’s original trajectory with Allende and the elder Aldama holding joint command, while Hidalgo served as second in command. [2]

On September 18 the rebels moved on the village of Celaya, which was quickly taken and as news of the revolt radiated out through the Bajío the rebel forces quickly grew tenfold. Allende was initially wary over many of the new recruits capacity for restraint, as the vast majority were indian or mestizo peasant laborers with little or no military training. Regardless of his reservations he decided to make a move on Guanajuato, the capital of the intendancy. The Insurgent leadership promised the Intendant of Guanajuato, Juan Antonio Riaño, that the citizenry would be treated humanely if he were to surrender immediately. Riaño instead vowed never to surrender, as he amassed several thousand people into the city's grain exchange (referred to as the Alhóndiga de Granaditas) and utilized the buildings imposing structure as a impromptu fortress until reinforcements from México City arrived. However, the hills that surrounded the granary gave the Insurgents a strategic edge and quickly turned the battle to their advantage. Coupled with the death of Riaño early in the battle the Insurgents overran the granary and eventually the whole city, but not before massacring great numbers of Spaniards, including many citizens who had already surrendered. Allende and Hidalgo’s efforts to stop the rampage proved futile, and by the end of the day 600 Spaniards and 2,000 Indians lay dead. Allende, angered at what many of his Insurgents had done, began to rein Hidalgo in, cognizant of the fact the priest's inflammatory rhetoric towards Spaniards had whipped many Insurgents into a frenzy of blood-lust and revenge. Hidalgo was made to understand that while his gift for inspirational oratory would continue to serve a valuable service in inviting more people to the rebel cause, further attempts to incite unnecessary violence would be met by Allende's fury. To that end Allende instituted a zero tolerance approach when it came to dealing with the spree of pillaging that arose in the wake of their occupation of the Bajío, which initially hurt soldier retention but had the intended consequence of quelling much of the violence.


Massacre of the Alhóndiga de Granaditas in Guanajuato, September 28, 1810

Through October 1810, the insurgents made headway in the west, capturing both Guadalajara and Valladolid. At this point Allende was seen universally as the supreme commander of the Insurgent army, and with the aid of the Aldamas and his own son Indalecio began instilling proper military training and tactics as best as they could in preparation for a "true" engagement with Royalist forces, whom had hastily asserted control over Querétaro and San Luis Potosí. In Valladolid, the Insurgents were also empowered by more forces who were led by another militant priest, José María Morelos. Through private funds, Allende and his army, now over 75,000 strong, planned to strike the Royalists at their source--México City. [3] En route to the capital, Allende and his army met with a Royalist force under the command of General Torcuato Trujillo near Toluca, which itself was only 40 miles from México City. Viceroy Venegas had sent Trujillo and roughly 2,500 troops west toward the Toluca Valley in order to form a protective barrier against what the Royalists deemed a mob of rampaging barbarians, and to that end took up positions along the Sierra de las Cruces, which secured the two main roads to the capital. The battle for the sierras began early on the morning of October 30, and despite the numerical advantage the Insurgents failed twice to dislodge the Royalists from the high ground. At Hidalgo's urging the Insurgents sent emissaries to Trujillo to attempt to convince the Royalist leadership to surrender, but Trujillo refused outright to treat with rebels and ordered they be executed. The emissaries were all killed during the resultant melee, but to his misfortune the Royalist commander also suffered mortal wounds. The killings of the emissaries greatly angered and animated the Insurgents and on a third offensive that afternoon they finally managed to break the Royalists lines, securing Toluca and the road to the capital in the process. [4]

Now México City was literally within sight, and despite Hidalgo's reservations over attacking the capital, Allende sent emissaries to Viceroy Venegas imploring him to surrender the city peaceably, but Venegas rebuffed them on threats they be shot as traitors. On November 3 the Insurgents began engaging Royalist forces under the command of Augustín de Iturbide at the Battle of San Cosme, along the western edge of the city. In the meantime, Viceroy Venegas and other senior officials, fearing the worst, took flight to Veracruz. In street battles said to be some of the bloodiest in the war, the Insurgents slowly took the capital one city block at a time. With the few troops available to him in México City, Iturbide fought a battle of attrition against Allende, hoping to make seizure of the city a pyrrhic victory for the Insurgents, but he knew time was running out for a breakthrough to cut his losses and escape. Under the cover of darkness in the early morning hours of November 6, Iturbide and several hundred of his remaining men retreated east to Puebla, and by daybreak had crossed Paso de Cortes with Puebla visible in the distance. There was some initial instances of looting early on in the day, but Allende maintained his draconian countermeasures to abate the worse excesses of his soldiers, simultaneously assuaging many capitalino fears regarding the Insurgents. [5] With the fighting dwindling down over the course of the afternoon, the leaders of the revolt convened at the Palace of the Viceroy and discussed their next course of action. The following day, Allende, Aldama, Hidalgo and Morelos decreed the formation of a "governing junta," along wth a constituent assembly comprised of representatives from all the intendancies and provinces which was to rule the Viceroyalty in the name of Fernando VII. [6] The declaration also promised several things, paramount among them the abolition of slavery and the despised tribute tax. At this point Allende was officially made Capitán-General del America Septentrional (En. Captain General of North America) which made him the highest ranking officer in the Insurgent army. Throughout December Allende continued the monumental task of training and professionalizing his predominantly green forces. Aiding in this venture was the rapid influx of fresh rebel troops from the west and north (a mix of criollos, indians and mestizos, as well as several thousand recently freed negros, or Africans), which brought the Insurgent forces to just below 100,000 fighting men.


Battle of Monte de las Cruces, October 30, 1810

Upon hearing of México City’s capitulation, an infuriated Viceroy Venegas ordered his remaining forces to the north, under the command of Colonel Félix María Calleja to fall back from San Luis Potosí to Veracruz, in order to better calibrate their next course of action. Venegas decided on a renewed assault on the Insurgents in early January 1811, in order to drive them out of México City and extinguish the flames of revolution before they spread any farther, though even that final point proved unavailing. By the start of the new year revolutionary juntas dominated the landscape from Central America to Tejas and beyond.

At the beginning of January, Allende lead the Insurgent army east, occupying Tlaxcala and Puebla in the process, although the latter proved difficult as a sizable contingent of Royalist forces had been left behind by Viceroy Venegas prior to México City’s surrender. With the vast majority of the Valley of México under the Insurgent banner, Allende’s next move was to march on Veracruz. Not only would capture of the strategic port greatly bolster the Insurgent cause, but Allende hoped to apprehend Viceroy Venegas, who proved to be unwilling to any compromise whatsoever. On January 8 the Royalists and Insurgents engaged eachother near the village of Santa Rosa Necoxtla, on the eastern slope of the Sierra Madre Oriental overlooking Veracruz, fighting late into the afternoon with no clear victor. The Insurgents possessed the field advantage of overlooking the enemy, however General Calleja proved to be a formidable opponent and held his lines over repeated Insurgent assaults. After further engagements along the slopes of the Sierra Madre Oriental proved ineffective for either side, Allende and Calleja returned to Tlaxcala and Veracruz respectively. The remainder of January would be characterized by sporadic fighting along the eastern rim of the Valley of México and in the foothills east of Puebla.


Capitán-General de America, Ignacio Allende y Unzaga

Both sides used the remaining winter months as a general reprieve, as well as a moment to reflect and readjust battle plans for future campaigns. Calleja and Venegas began to move Loyalist forces from Central America and Cuba to the Altiplano in order to compensate for their own low numbers. [7] Although Venegas had petitioned the mother country for more troops and supplies just prior to the Insurgent seizure of México City, any help from Spain itself would be trickling in, if any help was sent at all. Spain itself was locked in a struggle for its own independence against Napoleonic France, and coupled with Insurgencies simultaneously breaking out in the other colonies such as New Granada, Perú and Río de la Plata, any help from Europe would be negligible for the foreseeable future.

Allende also began to take advantage of the lull in hostilities by further consolidating control of land already under Insurgent control. As of early February 1811 this included the Intendancies of Guadalajara and Valladolid, portions of Arizpe, Nueva Vizcaya, Nueva Extremadura, México, Puebla and Guanajuato, as well as the Provinces of Nuevo Santander, Nuevo León and Texas. Allende also sent Pascasio Ortiz de Letona as liaison to the United States. Upon his arrival in Washington D.C. nearly seven weeks later, Ortiz de Letona and his fellow diplomats consistently petitioned President James Madison and Secretary of State Robert Smith for any support they could provide for what they deemed the “struggle for freedom of all America.” Although Madison was receptive and sympathetic towards the plight of the independence movements sprouting up across Spanish America, his pressing international concerns at the time were primarily with the British. The United Kingdom was technically at peace with its former colony, but for years had upheld the practice of impressing American sailors caught at sea, despite numerous American protests. These events, coupled with Smith's replacement as Secretary of State with James Monroe that following April, made Letona’s progress for diplomatic recognition slow in coming. Meanwhile 1,900 miles away, the Insurgents were about to deal with a turn in their fortunes as the war for independence entered a challenging new phase.

[1] Ayuntamiento (or cabildo) is a Spanish term that translates to "city council" or "town hall."
[2] Point of Divergence: In OTL the argument began over Allende's disaproval of the looting of San Miguel, his hometown. The conspirators felt Hidalgo was the best "face" for the rebellion, as he was admired by many across all the various castes, and in the end he was chosen as Supreme Commander. This was a spur of the moment desicion, as the original plan gave more authority to Allende.
[3] OTL the Insurgents numbered over 80,000 at this point but Allende's draconian deterrants to pillaging and other acts of wonton violence have filtered out a significant chunk of potential fighters.
[4] In OTL Trujillo did order the deaths of the Insurgent emissaries during the ceasefire. This is probably the first "important" butterfly. This time around the Insurgents go in to negociate with some guns or some sort of cover, whatever the case may be, and manage to at least go down fighting. More importantly however is the fact that from this point onward things truly begin to deviate from OTL, as it was originally after the Battle of Monte de las Cruces that Hidalgo had his change of heart over attacking the capital and at the last minute turned his army around to Guadalajara.
[5] Capitalino/a is a term used to refer to someone from México City or "the capital."
[6] It's important to note that at this point in the game the conspirators aren't demanding independence yet, just greater autonomy and guarantees for some basic rights they understandibly feel are being infringed. That's why all of these early appeals both OTL and TTL were done in the name of Fernando VII.
[7] Atiplano is Spanish for plateau, in this case the Plateau of Anahuac or the Mexican Plateau, and is a reference to the Mexican "core" territory.
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Viceroyalty of New Spain, 1810
Because every TL isn't complete without copious amounts of maps. Granted this map isn't too much different than OTL but I figure it might help visualize movements in the TL a little.

@Arkhangelsk - I hope that you can incorporate both a Mexican Philippines AND a successful British invasion of the Río de la Plata this time around (maybe have Liniers die so that he doesn't rally the criollos to victory?)
I'm afraid the British invasion predates the PoD by a few years, but you still raise a very fine point with regard to Rio de la Plata, and who's to say the British (or another power) might meddle around the Southern Cone. I haven't quite figured out how much from my old draft I want to deviate but I'm always open to hearing new ideas. :)

Mexican Philippines definitely sounds like a challenge, but I do kinda like the timber of it :biggrin: As it is the Philippines will feature more prominently earlier on but I'm still working out the details.


I'm afraid the British invasion predates the PoD by a few years, but you still raise a very fine point with regard to Rio de la Plata, and who's to say the British (or another power) might meddle around the Southern Cone. I haven't quite figured out how much from my old draft I want to deviate but I'm always open to hearing new ideas. :)

You know which invasion does follow the PoD: the Portuguese, on two separate occasions (they could have a lot more luck on their side, which leads to them not only gaining the Banda Oriental, but everything between them and the Paraná (essentially all of Entre Rios and Corrientes) too). That last bit may not stick but with any luck, they might well hold on to Cisplatina.
Oh, boy! I'm thrilled that this timeline (reloaded version) is back. I loved the first iteration and I kept waiting for a new update. Glad to see that you're back Arkhangelsk and that you're doing it with this TL.
Aaaaahhh thanks so much for the love y'all, it means so much to me that y'all loved my old TL, I'll try my best to bake this new incarnation even better!

You know which invasion does follow the PoD: the Portuguese, on two separate occasions (they could have a lot more luck on their side, which leads to them not only gaining the Banda Oriental, but everything between them and the Paraná (essentially all of Entre Rios and Corrientes) too). That last bit may not stick but with any luck, they might well hold on to Cisplatina.
Thanks so much for the info Gian, this is great stuff! I was kinda aware of the plot to crown Carlota Joaquina didn't know about the Portuguese invasions. It'll probably be a couple of updates before I get into greater detail as to what's happening in South America, so that gives me time to figure it out.

Oh, boy! I'm thrilled that this timeline (reloaded version) is back. I loved the first iteration and I kept waiting for a new update. Glad to see that you're back Arkhangelsk and that you're doing it with this TL.
Thanks so much buddy, it's great to be back :)

Get hype.
Hell yes!!! :cool:

I can't believe that one of the best TLs in this site is getting a reboot!
Awwww thank you, that truly makes my day 💙

Can't say I'm familiar with the original, but this looks interesting on its own right.
Thank you very much!! I have plenty of exciting things planned so hang tight!
PS: I remember that Brazil broke apart in the original TL, with the Northeast and Grão-Pará becoming independent, and Paraguay of all places conquering Rio Grande do Sul. Please don't do that this time...
PS: I remember that Brazil broke apart in the original TL, with the Northeast and Grão-Pará becoming independent, and Paraguay of all places conquering Rio Grande do Sul. Please don't do that this time...
Hahaha sorry about that, I got carried away on poor Brazil, and especially with the Paraguay wank. x'D Fwiw I had intended on both Gran Colombia and Brazil to eventually reunify in their respective regions at different times, but I will admit my knowledge of Brazil and South America was not so great back when I first wrote it.
What I have planned already drastically changes much of what I had originally wrote on South America and without giving too much away I think Brazil will be much better off...or at the very least won't be balkanizing at least any time soon.
The Supreme Junta and the First Republic: 1811-1812
The Supreme Junta and the "First Republic"


The Congress of Anáhuac in session, 1811

February delivered to the Insurgents their first major setback as the ultra-reactionary Calleja, with support from Royalist troops transferred from Guatemala and Cuba, launched a renewed offensive into the Valley of México from recently captured Puebla. Insurgent forces under the command of Ignacio López Rayón engaged Calleja immediately to the south of México City, but were unable to deter the Royalist advanced, forcing the Insurgent government to flee the capital to Toluca, then further east to Zitácuaro in the Intendancy of Valladolid. Regardless of this victory, reoccupation would prove to be troublesome for the Royalists, as guerrilla bands continued to operate in the sierras, harassing Viceroy Venegas' procession upon his return to México City. Calleja, now a Brigadier general, was keen to pursue Allende and his army into neighboring Valladolid, hopeful that another deathly blow would force the Insurgent cause to crumble. Venegas dissented and advised that while he had no doubt over the Royalist commander's ability to utterly destroy the Insurgents, he expressed his desire to formulate a plan that would not only break the uprising once and for all, but also reduce the risk of rebellion flaring up again in the future.

Undeterred by the Viceroy's apparent hesitation, Calleja marched west into Valladolid with 6,000 troops while a smaller force of 2,500 led by Colonel Manuel de la Concha marched north towards Guanajuato. At the Battle of Taximaroa, the Insurgents managed to decisively halt Calleja’s advance, and despite continuing to suffer heavy losses forced the beaten Royalist army to retreat back to México City. Viceroy Venegas confronted Calleja upon his arrival to the capital, chastising the Royalist commander for his lack of restraint in dealing with the rebels. This incident proved to be the first significant rift amongst the Royalist leadership, and hold major ramifications for the future of the Royalist movement.

For the moment, the Insurgents remained at Zitácuaro where the budding Insurgent government finally took form. The Supreme National Junta of America which was established in México City was comprised of nine voting members, five from the Insurgent military leadership (Ignacio Aldama, José Mariano Jiménez, José María Liceaga and Ignacio López Rayón) and four from the civilian leadership (Andrés Quintana Roo, Carlos María de Bustamante, José Sixto Verduzco and Miguel Hidalgo) and were led by a President elected by a majority of junta members.[1] The Junta served to promulgate and execute laws drafted by the Congress of Anáhuac, the 50-odd member Insurgent legislature which was comprised of delegates from the various intendancies and provinces of the Altiplano and other regions they held sway. The Congress and Junta came into conflict almost immediately over the balance of power between the two governing bodies, after Hidalgo in his capacity as President ordered the seizure and detention of all Spaniards in the city, which led to the indiscriminate apprehension of peninsulares and criollos alike. The timely intervention of Allende and Morelos prevented a bloodbath and settled the political squabbles between the Congress and Junta by forcing each body serve as a check to the other, with the Captain Generals serving as a third check on both bodies for the duration of the national emergency, as deemed by the Congress. The Captain Generals also agreed to force an election on a new President, electing Ignacio López Rayón in a near unanimous vote.


Great Seal of the Supreme National Junta of America

In the early spring the Insurgents split their forces roughly into three parts, with Morelos and twenty thousand troops marching south from Valladolid intent on capturing the port of Acapulco and dislodge the Royalists from Oaxaca. López Rayón and eighteen thousand of his own troops were to trek north toward Zacatecas in order to secure the region's valuable silver mines, with the added hope his army would incorporate rebel bands operating in the northeastern provinces and establish formal contacts with sympathetic Americans in Louisiana. The remaining thirty-one thousand troops under Allende’s command would push east, with the goal of retaking the capital and push through to Veracruz. By May 1811 the plan was in full motion, with Morelos and his army blitzing their way through the sierras of southern México and Puebla, eventually capturing Acapulco on July 25, 1811 after an arduous nine week siege. Morelos continued to upset the Royalists and by October his army was in control of much of southern New Spain, poised to take Antequera and the Valley of Oaxaca.

The arrival of Morelos to Oaxaca coincided with the onset of revolt in the Captaincy-General of Guatemala. The Royalists in Ciudad Real and Nueva Guatemala warned their citizens of the clear and present threat Morelos and his men posed, often embellishing the tales of looting and rape streaming down from the north in anticipation of the Insurgent push into Chiapas. Coupled with the low number of available Royalists in Central America due to the reshuffling of troops to the Altiplano earlier in the year, rebellion began to fester and spread rapidly from its epicenter in San Salvador into both Comayagua and Nicaragua. Despite their low numbers the Royalists managed to subdue most of San Salvador within a matter of weeks but failed to progress further east and south. Morelos expressed great desire to aid the Central American rebels but felt it prudent to stay the course and push north toward Puebla and México City. The Insurgents had planned to encircle Calleja and attack the capital in a double envelopment, but as the year progressed it became jarringly apparent that the plan was quickly unraveling.


Battle of Zitácuaro, June 1811

By early summer the Insurgents could no longer protect Zitácuaro from Calleja's onslaught, which compelled Allende and the Insurgent government to evacuate first to Valladolid, then further north to Guadalajara, where some sense of permanency eventually emerged. There was a brief moment after the evacuation of Zitácuaro when the Insurgents felt trepidation at the possibility of succumbing to defeat at the hands of Calleja, due to a slew of defeats incurred by Allende in northwestern Valladolid. The Insurgents eventually managed to halt Calleja's advance near the birthplace of the independence movement itself, south of Guanajuato. Aided by foreknowledge of Calleja's impending attack, Allende managed to deal a decisive blow to Calleja by ambushing the Royalists late into the night of June 30 at the Battle of Yuriria.[2] With the Insurgent army in pursuit throughout July and early August, Calleja was forced to retreat and set up his defense around the city of San Luis Potosí. Engagement would ensue once more in mid-August where the Insurgents and Royalists fought to a stalemate, with Calleja retaining San Luis Potosí while Allende established himself to the south at Santa María del Río near the border with Guanajuato. San Luis Potosí was an ardent Royalist stronghold, so Allende knew he would have to fight hard for every inch of ground in this area of New Spain.

Repeated frontal assaults by the Insurgents proved ineffective, which drove Allende to exploit the geography surrounding San Luis Potosí, reminiscent of the battle of Guanajuato the year before. On the evening of August 30, a contingent of several thousand Insurgents under the command of Juan Aldama made their way around the mountains to the city’s southwest in order to attack Calleja’s southern and western flanks simultaneously. All the while Allende renewed his push into the city. In the early morning hours of September 1 Allende attacked Calleja’s eastern flanks, anticipating that Calleja would act on information given to him by spies on the movements of the Insurgents and focus on his western flank, which proved to be the case. Calleja attempted to supplement his eastern flank with some of the troops available to him, but fearful he would not have enough forces to face the impending attack from the west he refused to spread them out further. When Aldama did attack around noon, Calleja’s western flank managed to hold, as the Insurgents proved incapable of breaching Calleja’s lines. The dynamic changed however around two in the afternoon when Insurgent artillery struck an ammunition wagon, which caused a massive explosion that killed scores of Royalists and injured Calleja himself.[3] This momentary lapse in Royalist organization was all that was needed to break the western flank and allow the Insurgents to capture most of the city. By late afternoon Calleja was in Insurgent custody and Royalists not captured by Allende dispersed into the wilderness of the Sierra Madre Oriental. The Insurgents spent most of September occupying Rioverde, Los Valles and most of the Huasteca potosina.[4] On October 1, one month after the Battle of San Luis Potosí, Allende captured Tampico on the Gulf of México, providing the Insurgents with an Atlantic port. The remainder of 1811 was characterized by the formal establishment of the Mexican Navy in Tampico, utilizing captured Spanish warships as a base to build upon. Consequently the Insurgents gained vital sea access to American goods via New Orleans, and on rare occasions conduct harassment operations on Spanish supply lines.


Capitán-General Ignacio López Rayón

Further west López Rayón managed to consolidate Insurgent control over much of Zacatecas and southern Nueva Vizcaya, including the Guadiana Valley. From his temporary headquarters at Durango, López Rayón pushed east into Nueva Extremadura and within a matter of weeks united all the Insurgent bands operating in the Comarca Lagunera.[5] The Insurgents spent the remainder of the summer conducting raids into the Bolsón de Mapimí and Nuevo León, in anticipation of the drive into the Río Bravo Valley and the Gulf Coast in the autumn. One such raid on Monclova in July 1811 saw the destruction of the infamous Spanish prison el Polvorín.[6] Many of those jailed within the presidio included Texan rebels who had been condemned to death, such as Juan Bautista de las Casas.

The arrival of Ignacio Aldama with fresh reinforcements tipped the balance in López Rayón's favor and in early September the Insurgents took Saltillo, followed by Monterrey six weeks later on October 12. Assisted by De las Casas, who managed to rally the disparate rebel bands which had been operating in the province since January, the Insurgents took Laredo in early November and quickly occupied the Río Bravo Valley. By the end of the month López Rayón and his army were situated on the southern bank of the Nueces River, not far from the Royalist encampment at Presidio La Bahía. There the few remaining Royalist forces in the region, led by Colonel José Joaquín de Arredondo, banded together to stop the Insurgent advance on San Antonio de Béxar, the provincial capital. Both sides sustained heavy losses at the Battle of La Bahía, but López Rayón managed to take the village and move north. This alarming turn of events prompted Governor Manuel María de Salcedo to evacuate the capital. However, on his flight to the provisional capital at Nacogdoches, Salcedo was intercepted by Insurgents under the command of De las Casas, the very same man Salcedo had imprisoned and condemned to death several months before, and proceeded to execute Salcedo just outside San Marcos on December 15.[7] With Salcedo dead the organization of the Royalist movement in Texas all but crumbled, with Arredondo and the bulk of the remaining Royalist forces retreating south along the coastal plain to Nuevo Santander. López Rayón and De las Casas, now in control of the province, initiated the process of establishing informal connections with the United States. By the dawn of the new year, both Americans and Insurgents freely traveled between the U.S.-Texan border, with the city of New Orleans becoming a major hub for Insurgent activity outside the boundaries of New Spain.

With renewed resolve Allende marched south from Tampico, intent to secure the Gulf coastal plain and the port of Veracruz. In a variation of his original plan to encircle the capital, Allende intended to sever México City's principle connection to the Atlantic Ocean and thus to Spain, as well as deprive the Viceroy of utilizing the port as a place of refuge once more. The Insurgents managed to win a string of battles at Tuxpan, Coatzintla and Teziutlán with relative ease over the course of January 1812, before being halted near Jalapa by Royalist forces under Agustín de Iturbide. The battle at Jalapa served the Insurgents their first major defeat in nearly a year, and forced Allende to retreat back to Tuxpan in early February. Months of near constant fighting had decimated much of Allende's army, and by this point he commanded less than twenty thousand troops. Desperate for aid, Allende commissioned Bernardo Gutiérrez de Lara to join the Ortiz de Letona Mission in Washington City to formally petition the United States for military support against Spain.[8]


Capitán-General Morelos fighting at Cuautla, March 1812

The Insurgency in the south fared no better. After marching north through the Cañada de Cuicatlán, Morelos managed to get as far as Tehuacán before his forces were halted south of Puebla by Colonel Ciriaco del Llano. [9] Morelos was forced to pull back south to Tehuitzingo, then northwest to Cuautla in late January, where he and his seventeen thousand men settled in for a lengthy siege. The Royalist leadership surrounded the city and determined to starve the rebels into submission. In April Morelos' lieutenant Mariano Matamoros managed to break through the siege and rendezvous Vicente Guerrero in Toluca. There both men awaited Hermenegildo Galeana, who was marching south from Guadalajara with an army of eight thousand recently trained soldiers, ready to fight. In April 16 the new Insurgent army marched at lightning speed from Toluca to Cuernavaca, taking the city's Royalist defenders by total surprise. From there Matamoros led the bulk of his forces to attack the Royalist besiegers from behind, while Galeana and Guerrero aided Morelos and his beleaguered army in breaking out from Cuautla.[10] The Insurgents escaped through the Sierra de Huautla with Royalists under Del Llano and José Antonio Andrade in heated pursuit. The chase finally ended at Iguala where the Insurgents, despite all odds, inflicted significant losses on the Royalists and forced them to retreat back north. After a short reprieve Morelos and his forces made their way south to Chilpancingo, where they convalesced for roughly a fortnight before renewing their offensive on Puebla.

The Insurgents under Morelos set out in early May, and in a stunning reversal of their previous campaign overtook Izúcar and Puebla with relative ease, and by the end of the month both Orizaba and Córdoba were in Insurgent hands. With a reaffirmed sense of urgency, the Insurgents attempted once more to strike at Veracruz. From Córdoba Morelos marched toward the sea and attacked Alvarado to the south of Veracruz. Allende, who had been campaigning in northern Puebla and Veracruz throughout the spring of 1812, finally defeated Iturbide on his second attempt to take Jalapa on May 18. Allende was the first to reach Veracruz on May 29, and the following day began to siege the city. Morelos joined the siege a week later in an attack from the south, but even with the combined might of both Insurgent generals, Veracruz remained indomitable. As Insurgent morale once more began to wane, Allende was burdened by two unfortunate pieces of information. The first was a message from his ambassadors in Washington City, informing him of the United States unwillingness to interfere on behalf of the Insurgents, as the threat of war with the United Kingdom loomed on the horizon. The second unfortunate piece of information came to Allende in the form of a rider from San Luis Potosí, who informed the Insurgent commander that Félix María Calleja had escaped imprisonment and was now at the head of an army marching directly toward the heart of the Bajío.

[1] Alternatively known as the Supreme Governing Junta of America, it is similar but not quite the same as its OTL incarnation, the Council of Zitacuaro. Same goes for the Congress of Anáhuac, as the latter replaced the former originally as the Insurgent government. Also known in OTL as the Congress of Chilpancingo.
[2] I imagine Yuriria and San Luis Potosí to kinda-sorta be, drawing an allusion to the ARW, Allende's "crossing the Deleware" moment. Yuriria (or Yuririhapúndaro) is quite the fitting setting as well, as it translates to "Place of the bloody lake" in Purépecha.
[3] Call me lazy lol, it's a near inverse of what happened to the Insurgents at the Battle of Calderón Bridge in OTL.
[4] Huasteca potosina roughly corresponds to the eastern half of San Luis Potosí. Itself part of the greater Huasteca region along the Mexican Gulf Coast.
[5] Comarca Lagunera, which means "region of lagoons," is the name given to the cross border region between Durango and Coahuila where the Aguanaval and Navas rivers drain into.
[6] El Polvorín was Monclova's powder magazine, and in OTL served as the temporary prison of the Insurgent leaders before most of them were transported to Chihuahua to be tried and executed.
[7] Another little bit of irony, as it was Salcedo that originally had got the last laugh over De las Casas. OTL the Texans were executed, as by that point in time the Insurgents had already lost at Calderón Bridge and got captured by Igniacio Elizondo on the march north toward the United States.
[8] In OTL Ortiz de Letona's ship was intercepted by the Spanish en route to the eastern United States, and he was promptly executed. In this timeline he makes it to Washington DC no worse for wear. Also at the time the US capital was only known as Washington City.
[9] Cañada de Cuicatlán is the name of a long, hot, humid and fertile valley in north-central Oaxaca which serves as a corridor between the central valleys of Oaxaca and the Valley of Tehuacán in southern Puebla.
[10] Matamoros does indeed make a break to Toluca in OTL for desperately needed supplies, but much of it gets lost on his return to Cuautla, and there's not back-up waiting and ready in OTL. Butterflies from the Insurgency having an established presence after a couple of years helps a great deal.
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Are there already any noticeable differences from 1.0? Calleja still escapes from Insurgent custody, but it seems that Veracruz is besieged earlier.
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Wow, this was one of the first TLs I read when I joined the site. Glad to have it back, man, and looking forward to your improvements to the story
Are there already any noticeable differences from 1.0? Calleja still escapes from Insurgent custody, but it seems that Vercaruz is besieged earlier.
So far not too much, the first two updates I mostly corrected things, shifted a couple of things around like Veracruz (well more battles for the port will be fought in the future) and a few additions like the bit on the 1808 coup d'état and the Siege of Cuautla. The next couple of updates I'm going to have to write from scratch for the most part so that's where you'll begin to see some differences.

Wow, this was one of the first TLs I read when I joined the site. Glad to have it back, man, and looking forward to your improvements to the story
Same here. It was one of my favorites back in the day. Super happy to see it returning.
Thank you both, seriously it makes me so happy to hear that. :biggrin: