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Francisco Duenas

DUENAS, Francisco (duaynyas), president of Salvador, born about 1830. He was educated for the bar, and figured at an early age in the politics of his country, on the conservative side, but, on account of his constant opposition to the liberal government of the president, Gerardo Barrios, was obliged to emigrate to Guatemala. When, early in 1863, General Rafael Carrera, president of Guatemala, suspecting Barrios of favoring a reestablishment of the Central American union, with himself as president, declared war against Salvador, Duefias joined the invading army. Although Carrera was defeated at Coatepeque, 25 February he soon raised a new army, and, after defeating a Salvadorian army under General Santiago Gonzalez at Santa Ana, 30 July he besieged and on 26 October occupied the capital, San Salvador, deposed General Barrios. and installed Duenas as provisional president.

In 1865 Duenas was elected constitutional president for the term extending from April 1865, to 1869, and in the same year a revolution in favor of the exiled Barrios broke out, San Miguel and La Union declaring in his favor, but his general, Cabanas, was routed near La Union, 29 May and at the same time the former, preparing to sail from Realejo to join his followers, was taken prisoner by the Nicaraguan authorities, and delivered to the government of Salvador, under a promise that his life should be spared. Notwithstanding this condition, Duenas submitted Barrios to a court martial largely composed of personal enemies, and he was condemned to death, and shot in August. In 1869 Duefias was reelected for a new term of four years, and, notwithstanding his conservative affiliation, followed a progressist policy. During his administration the first telegraph lines were established in the republic, the national palace in San Salvador built, and new and substantial wharves at the ports of La Libertad, La Union, and Acajutla were constructed. In February 1871, Honduras declared war against President Duefias, and at the same time, and probably in concert with Honduras, a revolution against his government broke out at home, headed by General Santiago Gonzalez, and on 10 April after a three days' battle, the government troops were defeated at Santa Ana. On the receipt of this news at San Salvador, the populace rose and sacked Duefias's house, who fled to the American consulate for protection, but on the entry of the victorious army, April 15, order was restored and Gonzalez nominated provisional president. Duenas, who had been delivered to the authorities, was set at liberty in June. After a prolonged trial by the Supreme Court, he was absolved, 4 July 1872, but toward the end of that month, on the discovery of a conspiracy to overthrow the governments of Guatemala and Salvador, he was imprisoned again, and in August expelled from the republic with sixteen capuchin friars who were implicated with him. They went to Europe.

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