Born in Sucre, Chile, Guerra was scion of two aristocratic families from Chuquisaca, Bolivia, who traced family descents from Incan royalty.  In England, he studied under the Jesuits at Stonyhurst College and graduated from Merton College, Oxford, in 1890.  Returning to Bolivia, he entered politics almost against his will.  Yet, in 1914, he was elected to Congress as deputy from La Paz.  By 1917, Guerra ran as the Liberal Party candidate for president.  Elected, he immediately faced worsening economic conditions and mounting opposition.  The 1917, the assassination of former president José Manuel Pando undermined Guerra’s popularity.  He also failed to act on the alleged misdeeds of his predecessor, Ismael Montes.  Guerra came to be nicknamed “the last Oligarch.”  He was toppled in a 1920 coup d’état and sought refuge in the U.S. legation at La Paz.  He later took a banking position at New York-based Chase National and lived out his days in exile, dying in Antofagasta, Chile, on February 3, 1929. 

Source:  Roberto Ossio Ortube, “1917-2017/The tomb of Gutierrez-Guerra,”, 8/14/2017.  Retrieved 7/12/2019,
Painting:  Author unknown.  Date: Circa 1917.  Public Domain in U.S.:  Pre 1/1/1925.  Public Domain elsewhere where copyright term is author’s life plus 70 years or less 

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