Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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DEGOLLADO, Santos (daygolyah'do), Mexican general, born in Morelia, state of Michoacan, Mexico, 30 July 1819; died in June 1861. He had a good education, but little is known of his life until he became prominent at the beginning of 1854 by revolting against the then powerful dictator, Santa Anna, and, together with Epitacio Huerta and Pueblita, headed the rising in the City of his birth. He organized an army about 2,000 strong, at the head of which he marched resolutely toward the City of Mexico, issuing on the way a proclamation, adopting the principles of the "Plan de Ayutla," issued on 11 March by General Juan Alvarez, whose forces he joined. After several victorious engagements with the troops of the dictator and the flight of the latter (16 August 1856), General Alvarez was proclaimed president, and Degollado with the liberal army entered the capital, 15 November 1855. Degollado belonged to the liberal party, and with Juarez, Lerdo de Tejada, Leon Guzman, and Ezequiel Montes, devoted all his energy to the success of the principles proclaimed at Ayutla, and was one of the deputies who signed the new Federal constitution, 5 February 1857. During the ensuing troubles of the reactionary or Church party, headed by Miramon, he was in the field again in aid of the liberal government represented by Juarez, and commanded the constitutional forces at, the unsuccessful battle of Tacubaya, 11 April 1859, against the reactionary army under Leonardo Marquez. In the same year he was elected governor of the state of Michoacan, which office he filled until 1861, when serious political complications called him to the capital of the republic.
Notwithstanding the final defeat of Miramon's forces at the battle of Calpulalpam, 22 December 1860, and his subsequent flight from the country, the Church party rose again, and forces under Zuloaga, Marquez, and Negrete threatened the government, and Degollado hastened to tender his services, but in the meanwhile he had been again elected to congress. When in June 1861, his friend, Melchor Ocampo, was taken prisoner by forces under the command of Cajiga, and, on the road to Morelia, was assassinated at Tepeji by order of Marquez, the government, indignant at this new outrage, took active measures, and Degollado asked of congress permission to take the command of the forces sent against the rebels, hnpatient of the arrival of a convoy commanded by General O'Horan, he left the City at the head of 150 men, and, in the dense woods called Monte de las Cruces met the enemy under command of Galvez and Buitron, who were in ambush. After a desperate fight of several hours, his ammunition was exhausted, his troops scattered, and Degollado taken prisoner° He was robbed and dragged away on foot, when suddenly Galvez's voice was heard, and Degollado was assassinated by his captors.
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