Jose Miguel Carrera
Jose Miguel Carrera Verdugo was a Chilean general, considered one of the founders of independent Chile. Carrera was the most important leader of the Chilean War of Independence during the period of the Patria Vieja ("Old Republic"). After the Spanish Reconquista ("Reconquest"), he continued campaigning from exile. Eventually, he was betrayed and executed in Mendoza, by the pro-San Martin military forces of the United Provinces of South America (River Plate). Jose Miguel Carrera was of Basque descent.
He was born in Santiago, the second son of Ignacio de la Carrera y Cuevas and Francisca de Paula Verdugo Fernandez de Valdivieso y Herrera. Carrera carried out his first studies in the Convictorio Carolino, the best school in the country at the time. During these years, he became friends with Manuel Rodriguez, classmate and neighbour, future guerrilla leader of the Chilean independence movement.
When he learned about the Junta de Gobierno that had been established in Chile to rule during the absence of the Spanish monarch, he went back to Chile and got involved in politics. As the Carreras were one of the three major political forces, he became part of the government. On 15 November 1811 the Carreras made a coup d'etat and Jose Miguel became the sole ruler of Chile (his brothers were military commanders). Because of his more personal and Chilean-national point of view about Chilean independence, Carrera came and came into conflict with the Lautaro Lodge, whose more Latin-Americanist centered objective was to unite all Latin America in the same way as the United States of America.
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