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Joaquín Crespo

In office
26 April 1884 – 15 September 1886
Preceded by Antonio Guzmán Blanco
Succeeded by Antonio Guzmán Blanco

In office
October 7, 1892 – February 28, 1898
Preceded by Guillermo Tell Villegas Pulido
Succeeded by Ignacio Andrade

Born 22 August 1841(1841-08-22)
San Francisco de Cara, Aragua
Died 16 April 1898 (aged 56)
La Mata Carmelera, Cojedes
Political party Liberal Party
Spouse(s) Jacinta Parejo

Joaquín Sinforiano de Jesús Crespo Torres (22 August 1841 – 16 April 1898) was a politician, soldier and President of Venezuela from 1884 to 1886 and again from 1892 to 1898, and a member of the Great Liberal Party of Venezuela. During the Joaquín Crespo regime, Venezuela had a dispute with the United Kingdom over the border between Venezuela and British Guiana (what is now Guyana).

Son of Leandro Crespo and María Aquilina Torres, Joaquín Crespo was born in San Francisco de Cara, lived his youth in Parapara, town of Guarico state, where learned to read and write. His career as military, began in March, 1858 as soldier under the command of Colonel José de Jesus, Donato Rodríguez and Zoilo Medrano, rising on 17 March 1864 as brigadier general. On 18 September 1864, married in Parapara with Jacinta Parejo, widow of Ramón Silva. Begins in politics as deputy to the Legislative Assembly of Guarico in the same year, being the principal deputy of the state at the National Congress (1865-1868). After completing his period on this charge, fights against the Revolución Azul (Blue Revolution) (1868-1870), led by José Tadeo Monagas, being one of main supporters of Antonio Guzmán Blanco, who rises him to the rank of General in Chief of the Venezuelan Army in 1871. Thanks to the support of Guzmán Blanco, his political and military career rises in short time. In 1871 is designated as military and civilian chief of Guarico, in 1873 as second appointed of the Presidency of Venezuela, in 1874 president of Guarico state, and between 1876 until 1877 minister of war and navy .

Crespo by Arturo Michelena
Joaquín Crespo at Los Colorados battle

In 1879, was one of the political figures that claim the return of government to Guzmán Blanco, being named civilian and military Chief of Maracay in 1880 and president of Guzmán Blanco state in 1882. On 14 April 1884 Crespo was elected president of Venezuela by the Federal Council succeeding Guzmán Blanco, also in 1884, under the direction of Giussepi Orsi Crespo started the construction of the Miraflores Palace (Current workplace of the president of Venezuela), for his family. On 26 April, takes office until 15 September 1886, being succeeded by his predecessor Antonio Guzmán Blanco. After this, the Congress rewarded his loyalty with the title of Héroe del Deber Cumplido (Hero of Fulfilled Duties), on 29 April 1886. In 1888, after the political reactions against Guzmán prompted by president Juan Pablo Rojas Paul, Crespo decides to travel to Trinidad, where prepares an uprising. However, the attempt failed, being arrested aboard the schooner Ana Jacinta and transferred to La Rotunda jail in Caracas, for a few days, exiling between 1889 and 1890. Senator for Guárico (1890-1892), opposed the constitutional reform promoted by president Raimundo Andueza Palacio, being the main leader of the Revolución Legalista (Legalist Revolution) in 1892, taking office on 7 October 1892.

In words of Thomas Rourke, the second presidency of Crespo that remained for six years after the revolution that had put him into power, was simply a repetition of the two years he had been in power before, or even worse, was victimized by everyone, created new debts for the nation, ruined the foreign credit of the merchants, getting funds from Germany to pay the debts of the railroad, but mist of the money found its way into the pockets of his friends. Nevertheless, Crespo was an honest man and the people knew it and he maintained his power until his term expired in 1898 and then he put in his place a dummy figure Ignacio Andrade. [1]

On 16 June 1893, is established a new constitution, being the major changes, the increase of presidential term from two for four years, and the direct suffrage. In February, 1894, obtain 349,447 votes at the presidential elections. being in charge of presidency for the period 1894 - 1898. In 1897, endorsed the candidature of Ignacio Andrade for the presidential elections of September, 1898.

However, Andrade's victory at the elections was fraudulent, causing the eruption of an armed movement led by General José Manuel "Mocho" Hernández, known as Queipa Revolution. For this reason, Crespo in his role as leader of the Army decides to destroy the uprising, being killed at La Mata Carmelera (Cojedes). Crespo, like many major figures of Venezuelan history, was linked to Freemasonry, being mason in the 33rd degree. Crespo was buried at the Southern General Cemetery of Caracas, in a private mausoleum on 24 April 1898. An obituary listed him as "killed in battle."[2]

See also


  1. ^ Thomas Rourke, Gomez, Tyrant of the Andes (1969; ISBN 8371-2698-3).
  2. ^ "Obituaries". The American Monthly Review of Reviews (New York: The Review of Reviews Co.): p. 539. 1898.,M1.  


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