Page images

goods, which are conveyed in the same manner, are weighed previous to starting, and both pay at the rate of so much per pound.

Young Wilson embarked at Buenaventura for Panamá, whence he sailed for Payta; and, continuing his route by land, he passed through Piura, Lambayeque, and arrived at Truxillo, on the coast of Peru. There he was detained for some time by Riva Aguero, then in open insurrection against the government of Lima. On his arrival in the capital of Peru, on the 19th of November, he was presented with a captain's commission by the Peruvian government. Upon joining the Liberator's head-quarters he was made aide-de-camp to his excellency, and was present at the battle of Junin.

In August, 1824, he was obliged to absent himself from the army, on account of ill health. At Huacho he took passage in the Protector frigate, and was present at some of the affairs with the Asia and other Spanish shipping in the bay of Callao. The affectionate kindness which Wilson experienced from Admiral Guise, added to good medical treatment, and quiet to which he had so long been a stranger, accelerated his recovery. He also passed some time on board The United States, an American frigate, and received from Commodore Hull the politest attention. He rejoined the Liberator at Chancay on the 12th of November.

In 1826, Wilson, who had now attained the rank of lieutenant-colonel, was made the bearer of the constitution which Bolivar had drawn up for the new republic of Bolivia. He performed the journey from

Lima to Chuquisaca, a distance of eighteen hundred miles, in nineteen days; and a longer journey on his return, by a different route, in the same space of time. General Sucre, with the sanction of the Bolivian congress, promoted Wilson to the rank of colonel. Conceiving that his brother officers might consider his promotion as too rapid, he refused to accept this additional rank until he was compelled to do so by the commands of the Liberator.


Wilson is a very fine promising young man. heriting the talents and spirit of his father, he has very popular manners. He has never allowed an occasion to escape to be of service to his countrymen, when, by employing his influence with the Liberator, he could in any way assist them. One trait completes his character. On a payment being made to the army at Lima, Wilson's share amounted to about five thousand dollars. He immediately sent the order for this sum to his father, and requested that the proceeds might be applied to Sir Robert's own use.



General Bolivar in Lima.-Congress not permitted to be installed. -Code Boliviano-adopted in Upper Peru.-Conspiracy in Lima.-Discontent.-Punishments.-The Liberator prepares to quit Peru.-Is prevailed upon to remain.-Code Boliviano approved of by the electoral colleges.-Bolivar named president for life. He proceeds to Colombia.-Grand federation at Panama.-Revolt of the Colombian troops at Lima-Adoption of the Code Boliviano declared illegal.-Congress installed. -General La Mar elected president of the republic.-Retrospect of Chile.-Magnanimity of South Americans towards Spaniards.

To bring the affairs of Peru to a close, it is necessary to return to General Bolivar, who quitted Chuquisaca in January, 1826, to be present at Lima at the installation of the congress, which had been ordered to meet in February of that year. It was understood to be his intention to resign, to this congress, the absolute power with which His Excellency

had been invested.

Several of the deputies arrived in the capital some little time before the day fixed upon for the opening of the sessions. Many of them expressed their opinions upon the propriety of the Colombian troops withdrawing from the territory of Peru, the necessity for retaining them having ceased. Some dwelt with marked emphasis on the declaration of Bolivar, upon his arrival in Peru, that, when its freedom should be

achieved, he would return to his own country with the Colombian troops, without carrying away even a grain of sand. The deputies held their preparatory meeting, when they received orders from Bolivar to submit their qualifications (poderes) to examination by the supreme court of justice; but the deputies contended that they themselves formed the proper tribunal for such scrutiny. An altercation ensued between Dr. Unanue *, president of the council of government, and the deputies. Bolivar, upon hearing of this refractory disposition, threatened to quit Peru. Petitions that congress might not be installed were got up. Their prayer was acceded to. The deputies returned to their homes, and the Liberator consented to remain.

It was about this period that Bolivar framed a constitution for the new republic of Bolivia. The general assembly of that state had dissolved itself on the 6th of October, 1825. A congress was installed at Chuquisaca on the 25th of May, 1826: Sucre was appointed to continue to exercise the executive power; and a committee of deputies was named to examine the Bolivian constitution. Upon the report of the committee, congress resolved to adopt the proposed constitution; which was done, and it was sworn to by the people. In conformity to the principles of the new constitution, a Presidente Vitalicio, or president for life, was elected. The choice fell The choice fell upon Sucre, who consented to accept the office for the period of only two years, and that upon condition that two

Unanue is a finished scholar, but did not shine as a statesman, politician, or man of business, excepting that his flexibility always kept him amongst the rulers of the day.

thousand Colombian troops should be permitted to remain with him. To these conditions congress acceded.

With reference to Peru, General La Mar had returned from Guayaquil to Lima, and he was solicited by Bolivar to assume the presidency of the council of government; but La Mar was disabled by indisposition from undertaking the duties of that office. He went back to Guayaquil; and General Santa Cruz, who was named in his stead, arrived at Lima, from 'Bolivia, in June, 1826, and immediately entered upon the office to which he had been appointed.

The Liberator was no doubt exceedingly desirous that the Code Boliviano should be also adopted in Peru. From the highly flattering manner in which he had been received in his tour through the provinces, he had perhaps been induced to imagine, and certainly with some appearance of probability, that whatever he recommended would be implicitly acceded to. He was confirmed in this erroneous way of thinking by those around him, and by others who constantly advocated the necessity of what they called a "strong government." This opinion was sustained by some of the ablest and best informed men in office, whose personal interest induced them to mislead Bolivar on this point, in which they were seconded by others anxious for place and emolument. These gentlemen reasoned as if every cause of complaint was to be traced to demagogues and party spirit, which a strong government would, as they persisted in declaring, have been able to keep down; but they forgot that no government in Peru could be really

« PreviousContinue »