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López, Estanislao (1786–1838)

López, Estanislao (1786–1838)

Estanislao López (b. 22 November 1786; d. 15 June 1838), governor of the province of Santa Fe (1818–1838). Born in the city of Santa Fe, Argentina, López studied in the local convent school. At the age of fifteen he joined the Blandengues who patrolled the northern frontier, where he learned the hit-and-run tactics that his montonero soldiers would later use. He participated in the reconquest of Buenos Aires (1806) and in the struggles for independence in the littoral. San Martín early won him over to his ideas. On 23 July 1818, López separated the province of Santa Fe from Buenos Aires by proclaiming himself its interim governor; the following year, he was elected governor, and remained so until his death. In 1819 he gave the province its first constitutional statute. He joined José Gervasio Artigas and Francisco Ramírez in their war against Buenos Aires. He and Ramírez defeated Buenos Aires at Cepeda (1 February 1820) and compelled its cabildo to dissolve the national congress and to sign the Treaty of Pilar (23 February). Peace was reestablished between Buenos Aires and Santa Fe with the Treaty of Benegas (24 November). With the death of Ramírez in 1821, López became the dominant leader in the littoral. On 22 January 1822 he signed the Quadrilateral Treaty, and on the eve of the Brazilian invasion of Uruguay he approved an alliance with Montevideo (13 March 1823).

In 1828, López presided over the national convention in Santa Fe that approved the peace treaty with Brazil and appointed him commander of the national army to fight the unitarian José María Paz. At his initiative, the Federalist Pact was negotiated and signed in Santa Fe (4 January 1831). As governor, he encouraged trade and economic development, pushed the provincial borders farther into the Chaco, improved the administration of justice, and established elementary schools, including one in an Abipón village, and a secondary school. His influence diminished as that of Juan Manuel de Rosas increased.

See alsoRosas, Juan Manuel de; Santa Fe, Argentina.


Leslie Bethell, ed., Spanish America After Independence, 1820–1870 (1987).

Joseph T. Criscenti, ed., Sarmiento and His Argentina (1993).

H. S. Ferns, Britain and Argentina in the Nineteenth Century (1960).

Tulio Halperín-Donghi, Politics, Economics, and Society in Argentina in the Revolutionary Period, translated by Richard Southern (1975).

John Lynch, Argentine Dictator: Juan Manuel de Rosas, 1829–1852 (1981).

Ysabel F. Rennie, The Argentine Republic (1945).

José Luis Romero, A History of Argentine Political Thought, translated by Thomas F. McGann (1963).

Additional Bibliography

Hoffmann, Andrea. El discurso político de Estanislao López. Santa Fe: Asociación Amigos del Archivo General de la Provincia, 1998.

                                    Joseph T. Criscenti

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