APRIL 2, 1838


After Central America gained independence from Spain in 1821, tensions emerged in Guatemala between the cities of Guatemala City in the east and Quetzaltenango in the west.  On April 2, 1838, in Quetzaltenango, the independent State of Los Altos was founded.  It became the sixth state of the Federal Republic of Central America and drew to it members of the Liberal Party of Guatemala, However, as it was the most productive economic region in Guatemala, Guatemala City wanted it back and sent General Rafael Carrera to subdue Los Altos.  He defeated former Mexican General Agustín Guzmán and then took Quetzaltenango where he imposed a harsh regime.  On March 18, 1840, he defeated liberal Francisco Morazán and sent him into exile.  Morazán’s surviving troops were shot without mercy.  On April 2, 1840, Carrera forcibly annexed Los Altos.  Revolts in 1844, 1848, and 1849, failed to reproclaim Los Altos. 

Sources:  Christian Diaz, “The Sixth State of Los Altos,” Entremundos.  Retrieved 11/26/2020, The Sixth State of Los Altos | EntreMundos 
Graphic:  Domaleixo at English Wikipedia, 11/9/2007.  Public Domain.

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