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Benito Juárez

García Vigil #609
Oaxaca, Oaxaca
Telephone: (951) 516-1860
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Casa de Benito Juárez
  This is the home of Benito Juárez in Oaxaca, Oaxaca, 6-1/2 blocks N of the NW corner of the zócalo on Garcia Vigil. Juárez was the 27th President of Mexico and Oaxaca's most famous son. He was a rebellious champion of liberal political reform and human rights and one of a very few native Americans to become a country's president.

The building houses the Museo de Sitio Casa Juárez. Hours are 10 am - 5 pm Sunday and 10 am - 7 pm other days except closed on Mondays.

Benito Juárez was a Zapotec native American born in 1806 in San Pablo de Guelatao, Oaxaca, to a poor sheep-herding family. As a young boy, he worked for a wealthy Creole family. His employer helped Benito to get an education and then become a lawyer. Benito Juárez became governor of Oaxaca in 1847 but was exiled by dictator Santa Ana in 1848. He joined other exiles in New Orleans, Louisiana. He served as governor until 1852. In 1854 he played a major role in drawing up the Plan of Ayutla, a reform program for unseating Santa Anna and creating a federal constitution. In 1857 he became the Minister of Justice of the Mexican government in exile and in 1859 issued the Laws of Reform or Ley Juárez . The reform laws separated church and state and attacked the privileges of the army.

The conservative government was defeated and in 1861 Juárez became President of Mexico upon the resignation of Ignacio Comonfort. Comonfort had attempted to choose middle ground between liberal and conservative politics, making enemies on both sides. In 1863 Juárez' enemies, with the help of the French, once again sent him into exile. In 1867, Juárez and his supportors retook the presidency by force. As president, Juárez became known as the Abraham Lincoln of México because he outlawed slavery and the mistreatment of the Mexican native Americans. He was reelected in 1871 but died in the presidency in 1872 with much of his reform work left undone.

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