Plaza Civica is also known as Plaza Allende, or at least part of it is. In 1962, this plaza was created by happenstance. News spread that President Diaz was coming to San Miguel de Allende to dedicate the Ignacio Allende Dam outside of town. So why not have him dedicate the new and un-built plaza at the same time. Workers were recruited and even prisoners were used to get this plaza built in time. A sculptor from Mexico City was finally convinced in getting this huge equestrian statue of General Ignacio Allende done. When the statue was making its way into town, down the steep streets, a hand was broken off. Also looking a bit too new, it was drenched with acid which turned it green. With time running out, there was not enough time to plant the gardens so cut flowers, trees and vines were stuck into the ground.
When the President arrived, he spoke a few words to the public and muttered for those to hear close by, "Another equestrian statue, just what this country needs!"
It was Allende, the captain of the militia in San Miguel, who joined forces with Father Miguel Hidalgo, the parish priest from the nearby town of Dolores Hidalgo, that helped lead the movement in 1810 to free Mexico from Spain. I like to think that 200 years later, Allende is still watching over us.
Join me in June of 2011 on one of my guided tours of San Miguel de Allende and the surrounding areas. This favorite plaza of mine is part of my walking tour on day two.
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