Manuel Gonzalez Flores was the 31st President of Mexico and a liberal politician and military general. He enlisted in the military after his father died, and he was dedicated to duty and valor. During combat, he was brave and didn’t hesitate to fight for the military leader he admired. During his military service, Gonzalez was active on both the Conservative and Liberal sides, flip-flopping between the two parties depending on who was in charge. He was a major figure in both the French Intervention in Mexico (Lieutenant) and the Reform War (Lieutenant) (general). Gonzalez had a significant political history in addition to his strong military background. Beginning as a lowly soldier in the Army, he rose quickly through the ranks to become Governor, Secretary of Defense, Secretary of the Navy, and finally President. He was admired for his bravery and intelligence, as well as his desire for power. Although little is known about his personal life, we do know that he married again in the same year (probably following the death of his first wife) and fathered two kids. When he died, he took sure to remind his family and friends to obey and respect his successor, Porfirio Diaz.
Childhood and Adolescence
Manuel Gonzalez Flores was born in Matamoros, Tamaulipas, Mexico, on June 18, 1833. Coronel Fernando Gonzalez Lerma and Eusebia Flores Capistran had four children.
Flores was significantly inspired by his father’s death at the hands of US invaders, which led to his enlistment in the army at the age of 19 in 1947.
Career of Manuel González Flores
From 1853 until 1855, Gonzalez fought alongside the Conservative forces in support of Antonio de Padua Mara Severino López de Santa Anna.
In 1856, he was wounded in the Battle of Ocotlan, when he was fighting against the rebels opposing President Ignacio Comonfort.
He fought alongside Conservative General Miguel Miramon against President Benito Juarez in 1859. On President Juarez’s order, General Miramon was hanged for treason in 1867.
Gonzalez accepted Congress’s offer of amnesty to the Conservatives in 1860. He also fought for the Liberals against the French invasion and Maximillian of Habsburg at the same time.
He was wounded in the defense of Puebla in 1862 while serving under Porfirio Diaz and taken prisoner by the French. Diaz promoted him to Chief of the Army of the Center after his escape.
Under Diaz’s command, he proceeded to face the enemy at the battles of Miahuatlan and La Carbonera, Oaxaca. The French recaptured him and imprisoned him once more. He was later released on bail and returned to the Mexican army.
Gonzalez lost his right arm in the battle of Puebla in 1867. President Juarez assigned him to the positions of military commander of the Federal District and governor of the National Palace the following year.
From December 1, 1880, to November 30, 1884, Gonzalez was President of Mexico.
Major Projects of Manuel González Flores
Gonzalez opened the railway from Mexico City to El Paso, Texas, when he was president.
In addition, he established the Banco Nacional de Mexico.
In the state of Puebla, he constructed 1,500 Italian-populated industrial and agricultural communities.
In addition, he cut the ribbon on the country’s first submarine cable.
He was instrumental in the adoption of the metric system in the United States in 1882.
He also had a key role in resolving a conflict with Guatemala. The conflict was peacefully resolved.
While in office, Gonzalez was able to change the 1857 Constitution, changing who would succeed the president in the event of his death while in office. The president of the Senate would be the new heir apparent.
Personal History and Legacy
Gonzalez married Mariana Vazquez in May 1860. Mariana died later that year, allowing him to remarry.
He married Laura Fdz Mantecon Arteaga in September 1860.
Manuel Gonzalez Hijo, Fdz Mantecon (March 20, 1863) and Fernando Gonzalez, Fdz Mantecon were Gonzalez and Arteaga’s sons (July 6, 1865).
He was charged with misappropriation of public funds after his presidency ended. No charges were brought against him by the grand jury.
On April 10, 1893, he died in Chapingo, Mexico.
Estimated Net Worth
The estimated net worth of Manuel González Flores is unknown.
He became governor of Guanajuato when a grand jury declined to prosecute him with embezzlement. He was unanimously elected and served from 1884 until 1893.
He was the first president from his home state of Tamaulipas to be elected by popular vote.
In 1854, he battled against Porfirio Diaz, but in the 1860s, he fought alongside Diaz.
Porfirio Diaz came before him and succeeded him.