Campos Sales, Manuel Ferraz de (1841–1913)

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Campos Sales, Manuel Ferraz de (1841–1913)

Manuel Ferraz de Campos Sales (b. 13 February 1841; d. 28 June 1913), president of Brazil (1898–1902). Born in Campinas, São Paulo, Campos Sales studied and practiced law before being elected a provincial deputy by the Liberal Party in 1867. He became an organizing member of the Republican Party of São Paulo in 1871, and was elected to the provincial chamber in 1881 and the national legislature in 1885 as a Republican and doctrinaire federalist. He was voluble, principled, and politically astute.

With the establishment of the Republic, Campos Sales served as minister of justice in General Manoel Deodoro da Fonseca's governments and built the administrative and judicial basis of the new republic. Weathering the political conflicts of the 1890s, he was elected president in 1898. His administration is best known for the reconstruction of the nation's finances and the creation of the political process that characterized the Republic until 1930.

In the economic crisis characterized by rampant inflation and speculation, known as the Encilhamento, Campos Sales made financial reconstruction the priority of the administration. Bolstered by the "funding loan" he negotiated with the Rothschilds, the government carried out deflationary currency policies, cut spending, abandoned public works, increased taxes and tariffs, and emphasized agriculture over industry. Notwithstanding considerable unpopularity for his policies, by 1902 Campos Sales had rehabilitated the national finances and international credit.

Elected in an atmosphere of regional revolts and fractious party politics, Campos Sales proclaimed himself above partisan politics. He articulated the Política dos Governadores, in which incumbent state governments supplied loyal federal congressional delegations in exchange for nonintervention in state affairs. Relying heavily on the larger states' economic and demographic strengths, the political system revolved around São Paulo and Minas Gerais. This reciprocity created a hierarchy of interlocking interests and loyalties down to the coroneis, the local bosses who delivered the votes for patronage and financial favors.

Sales died in Santos, São Paulo.

See alsoCoronel, Coronelismo .


Manuel Ferraz De Campos Sales, Da propaganda a presidencia (1908; repr. 1983).

Celio Debes, Campos Sales: Perfil de um estadista, 2 vols. (1978).

Additional Bibliography

Camargo de Villegas, María Zelia de. El gobierno de Manuel Ferraz de Campos Salles, el restaurador de las finanzas, 1898–1902. Caracas: Instituto de Altos Estudios de América Latina, 1993.

                                              Walter Brem

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Campos Sales, Manuel Ferraz de (1841–1913)

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