Black Manta

Black Manta

Saturday, February 1, 2014

365 dayz a year

American Liberator

Yanga (Nyanga)  was the stolen Prince from the royal family of Gabon Africa. Leader of a slave rebellion during the Spanish colonial rule of Mexico. The port city of Veracruz brought slaves to Mexico. Yanga's revolt freed men, women and children from Nuestra Senora de la concepcion in 1570. From there Yanga moved his people into the rugged mountains and set up a maroon colony there. Building houses, a church and a school there on Star Mountain. for more than 30 years the multicultural colony grew and prospered, partially operating on captured goods from caravans bringing in trade to Veracruz. Yang's raiders were devastating caravan cargo's so efficiently that the word from the Spanish crown was to eliminate the colony and retake control of the territory.

Spanish troops confronted Yanga's warriors in and around 1609 near Rio Blanco. Yanga at this time was an older statesman warrior who had Francisco de la Matosa as his military field commander. Francisco and his escaped men had joined Yanga around 1600. They faced 550 Spanish troops led by Pedro Gonzalez. The maroon warriors had only 100 men with some type of firearm. The rest of the Yanguicas were fighting with machete, bow and arrows and rocks. There were severe losses on both sides. The Spaniards burned the settlement but couldn't beat or subdue Yanga's forces. The warriors of Yanga simply disappeared into the terrain that had helped them defeat the enemy for years. Yanga's warriors and people took refuge inside Citlaltepetl volcano and fought the Spanish to a stalemate.

Gaspar's plan was to pain the ranks of the Spanish so bad that it would bring the Spaniards to the negotiating table. Yanga had already sent demands to the enemy from a captured Spanish soldier. The demands were rejected. At this point Gaspar challenged the Spaniards to come and meet death. Fighting relentlessly and using the superior tactics of Yanga, the maroon bloodied the Spanish troops to such a degree that by 1618 the viceroy of New Spain (Mexico) began negotiations with Gaspar resistance.

There were 11 conditions made by Yanga before he would lay down arms against Spain. One of the concessions was the establishment of a free town of former black slaves. This was something unheard of in this time period. A town ruled by Black People, free people in a period of slavery. By 1630 the town of San Lorenzo de los Negros de Cerralve was established; later called the city of Yanga.

This monumental accomplishment is a milestone of African American history. Gaspar Yanga and his people forced a new social order in the mist of an institutional vacuum. Every year Aug.10th a carnival is held to celebrate Gaspar Yanga. The American Liberator, founder of the first free city in American history.

The inscription under Yanga's statue reads

African Black Liberator and precursor 
of the black slaves who founded the town of 
San Lorenzo de Cerralvo (now Yanga) by agreement of the viceroy of 
New Spain, Rodrigo Pacheco,
on the third day of October 1631 by order of the viceroy's pen. Village Captain Hernando of Castro Espinosa 
H. Ayuntamento Constl. 


  1. here's a bit of irony for you. there's a small city next to the town i live in named San Lorenzo. back in the early 80s it was ranked as one of the most racist cities in America.

    1. Shameful right? In a country where it's so many diverse people, and where they all have contributed to the greatness of America; you can find racism.

      Gaspar Yanga and other real life Heroes were what was needed then and what's needed now. That's why his example of freedom can't be forgotten.

  2. Interesting history lesson there Tiger. Never hurts to be educated about all manner of things, especially this. Good work there informing us all Tiger.

    1. Real things inspire real conversation.
      Which in turn builds real unity.


  3. Wow it's amazing to me how certain cultures the world over have some pretty similar stories. It always amazes me how thinking outwits guns every time. In New Zealand with the british fought the Maori's, the latter built these massive forts with spears for fences (many of them still stand today and there are statues all over of famous warriors. The statue at the end of your post looks like one of them except the spear would be a taiaha - which is a spear head but a club bottom:

  4. I not to long ago read the British Empire by Dennis Judd. It was a real ride, I tell ya. It's also a movie (Tracker) that touches on the Maori war with the British. Decent story also. The video was strait, thanks for the link. I filed the weapon in my mental rolodex for further use.

    Your home turf is a beautiful place mate. I would love to visit and experience some history and culture from New Zealand.

    Until then....Long Live the Squad.

  5. Very nice way to kick off February... and all I did was a post about Deathlok. *hangs head in shame*
    Very interesting stuff here.
    I briefly dated a girl from Rhodesia. She is an activist and "missionary" -but not the crazy kind! I feel the need to specify that... She was legit. But, man- the stories she would tell me... It's unbelievable the shit that still goes on there still TODAY- that we NEVER hear about on the news- the atrocities that we just let happen. The killing and corruption and fights for power- that no one outside of Africa is paying any attention to... and the resulting suffering... fucking blows my mind.

  6. Activist and Missionary.....I would have loved to have met her. Was she Africaner? And yes man, it's a lot of things going on in our world that gets overlooked and or ignored. It's important that we all do our part to make things better. One

    1. -On her Father's side... her mother was a missionary he met there (or it was the other-way around, I don't remember exactly...) but her sister and her were eventually sent here to The States for schooling... That's how I met her.
      Last time I talked to her- she had just gotten back from Zimbabwe and was "home" for a bit before going to do some work in Mexico... So I went down to see her- we had lunch. That was a few years ago now, though... we've lost touch...
      Shit- I'm all lost in thought now... memory-lane! Anyway, yeah. -For sure. Even the smallest efforts to make things better will combine with others and gather momentum down hill.