Licenciado Mateo Ayuso Gómez

 J.P. & Commissioner of the Supreme Court.



1.         The most accepted theory about the origin of the Mayas, my ANCESTORS, is that of the BERING STRAIT, when the Mongols, hunting animals for food, crossed this frozen Strait on the NORTH-WESTERN side of Asia, into Alaska, say about (40,000) forty thousand years ago. Some historians claim that it is possible that these Mongols, as the years went by, perhaps centuries, multiplied among themselves, forming many communities, with their respective traits or characteristics; and thus molding their mode of livelihood, developing languages, customs, traditions and other cultural features.


2.         It is possible that through the thousands of years, their land and water sojourns took them through Canada, the United States of America, Mexico, Central America, South America and, including all the Islands of the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans.


3.         But according to our present-day knowledge, our Maya ancestors, concentrated their final habitat, within the confines of Central America; as The Mundo Maya tourist project comprises of: Yucatán-México, Belize, Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador.


4.         Many historians, and other researchers in the Social Sciences, have ascertained that Mayan Archaeological Edifices, proved their vast scientific knowledge in the areas of Advanced Mathematics, in Astronomy, etc., in fact, the late Sir J. Eric S. Thompson, a most renowned Archaeologist in this field, has compared the Mayas as the” Great Egyptians of the Americas”.







5.         Our history of Belize, Central América, begins about (4,000) four thousand years, ago, as portrayed and evidenced by many magnificent Mayan Pyramids, such as Santa Rita and Cerros here in Corozal Town which once was the home of no less then (60,000) sixty thousand Mayas. At present, 2001, our Maya-Mestizo Belizean-Ethnic group, throughout the whole country of Belize is composed of about 55.9% or 140,000, of the total Belizean Population. Belize is fortunate in possessing many Mayan archaeological edifices.


6.         Since the appearance of the Europeans, e.g. Spaniards, Portuguese, English, etc., say 509 years ago, in the Americas, all indigenous people like the Mayas, our ancestors, have been victims of utter and brutal exploitation, comparable to the treatment, which (15,000,000) fifteen million of brother-Africans, suffered while being brought to the Americas, so as to enrich the coffers of the said, Europeans.


7.         Historical records attest that Spanish Missionaries, like Bartolomé de Fuensalida, Orbita and Delgado, in spite of some violent encounters with the Mayas, who were living at TIPU, about 1618, a Village situated on the branches of the Belize/Old River, now known as Negro man, near Benque Viejo del Carmen, Caye District, traveled up to TAYASAL, now Petén Flores, in Guatemala, Central América. Their journeys usually began at Mérida, and continued through Bacalar, thence canoeing the Río Hondo, “Noh Ucum”, and the New River, “Tzulouinicob”, passing a Maya Village, named LAMANAI, (now, a tourist resort in the Orange Walk District), where the remnants of a Spanish Church still exists, and continued to the said, Tayasal/Petén Flores.


8.         Incidentally, some of our knowledgeable Belizean Historians can prove absolutely, that our Maya ancestors inhabited this portion of the Yucatán Península, now called Belize, Central América, for many thousand of years before the appearance of the white Europeans. Read “The Empty Land Myth: Justifying Continued Racism in Belize against the Maya", published in the Amandala, Sunday, August 6, 2000, page 17; a Lecture which Dr. Angel E. Cal, Ph.D., Rector of our Belize University, presented to a Select Faculty, at the University of Louisville, State of Kentucky, USA on 25th Feb. 2000. We, true born Belizeans, shall no longer acquiesce nor tolerate any more deliberate distortions of our Belizean History.


9.         Magnus Morner states that from the early appearance of the Spaniards and other Europeans, in our American-Ancient-Civilization, “New World” miscegenation or mixtures of people, indigenous of course, began in earnest. So it was not surprising that about 1511, when Gonzalo Guerrero and Gerónimo de Aguilar, the two survivors of Valdivias’s shipwreck, were rescued here at this Corozal Bay, know at that time as “Chactamal”; and consequently, it is claimed that Gonzálo Guerrero married Nachan Can’s daughter and thus initiated our Yucatán-region’s miscegenation or “MESTIZAJE”.







10.              Our Maya-Mestizo ancestors continued their resistance, now, not only against Spanish domination but also, against English encroachments, who established their Logwood and Mahogany working camps, on the Río Hondo and New River banks, about 1618. While England and Spain, agreed and disagreed on Signed-Treaties, about the Rights of Occupation, on the part of the English to exploit the Spanish Territory's natural resources, the Spanish Government continued with its Colonization of New Spain, including our geographical area of Yucatán, for, Belize at this time, was a political entity of Yucatán Península.


11.       Even though, there occurred many social and violent upheavals in Yucatan, as well as in many other regions of New Spain, during a spawn of no less than 348 years (1840-1492), one of these, must be remembered, since this specific one played a most important role in the development of our area, now known as Belize, in Central América. This particular one is the so-called, Guerra de Castas, 1847-1901, which caused a mass migration of about (15,000) fifteen thousand Maya-Mestizos, into the Northern and Western regions of this English–occupied territory, (British Honduras/Belize).


12.       Because of this migration, the entire population of this territory, British Honduras/Belize, increased to a total of about (25,000) twenty-five thousand inhabitants, composed at that time, of a few white Englishmen and a large number of our Brother–African slaves.


13.       It was about the early parts of the 1830’s to 1859 or so, that our present day Towns, e.g. Corozal, Orange Walk, Cayo–San Ignacio and Benque Viejo del Carmen; and Villages, e.g. Consejo, Xaibe, Patchakan, San Joaquín, Succotz and others, appeared as permanent settlements. Our Maya-Mestizo ancestors brought with them their Maya and Spanish languages, their customs and traditions; together with their Pre-Colombian and Spanish-Christian religious beliefs and their agricultural know-how. For example, besides the abundant production of corn, beans, yams and peppers, our ancestors produced 1,033 tons of sugar, of which, 762 tons were exported to England in 1868. Now, at present, 2001, both Orange Walk and Corozal sugar districts, produce annually, approximately (100,000) one hundred thousand tons of sugar.









14.              Some historians maintain that “The Caste War” was not a Racial War, a battle between Spanish Mestizos and Maya Indians; but was definitely, an economic-social “Revolution” between sectors of the Yucatán Society, which controlled the Government and its Socio-Economic resources, against the Marginalized-Proletariat or Peones, who for centuries were victims of Political, as well as Religious-Church oppression. I believe that our Belizean-Artist-Painter, Manuel Villamor Reyes, depicts this concept clearly in his Mural Painting, which can be seen in the Municipal Office-Building in Corozal Town.







15.       When our Maya-Meatizo parents settled Consejo Village, Corozal and the rest of the Northern and Westerns regions of this country of ours, Belize, say about (150), one hundred and fifty years ago, no land could have become purchased-property. There existed then, the Goshen Estate, an English Company, under the names of Young, Carmichael, Blake and the Schofields. Our Yucateco-Ancestors became TENANTS (Serfs) paying rent to the late Mr. William (Guillermo-Mito) Schofield, up to about 1956, when he sold all his Estate to the English Colonial Government, as a result of the total destruction of Corozal and surroundings, caused by Hurricane Janet of 1952.








This paper was presented in Corozal Town, at the Civic Center on the occasion of “The Official Programme for Expo 2001” by the Corozal Community College, Secondary Level, on 16th May 2001. “The purpose or objective of this said Expo-2001 was to retrieve the true History, language-Maya, Traditions, Customs and general culture of our Maya-Mestizo people.






Navarro, González Moisés, Raza y Tierra, La Guerra de Castas y el HENEQUEN, 1979, El Colegio de México, México.


Coe, Michael D. A Model of Ancient Community Stucture in the Maya Lowlands, 1965, And The Maya, Published-Pelican Bks. 1966


Dumond, Don E. The Machete and the Cross: Campesino Rebellion in Yucatán, Lincoln, University of Nebraska Press, 1997.


Lapointe, Marie. Los Mayas rebeldes de YucSatán, Zamora, Colegio de Michoacan, 1983, México.


Reed, Nelson. The Caste War of Yucatán. Stanford University Press, California, 1984


Shoman, Assad. Thirteen Chapters of a History of Belize, 1994, The Angelus Press Ltd. Belize, Central America.


Jones, Grant The Conquest of the last Maya Kingdom, Stanford University Press, California, 1998.


Rodríguez, Piña Javier. Guerra de Castas: La venta de Indios Mayas a Cuba, 1848-1861, 1990, Consejo Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes. México.


Diane Z. And Arlen F. Chase, 1986. Offerings to the Gods, Maya Archaeology at Santa Rita, Corozal, University of Central Florida, USA.


Berzunza, Pinto Ramón, 1965. Guerra Social en Yucatán, Costa-Amic-Editor, Mexico.


Morner, Magnus. Race Mixture in the History of Latin América, 1967, Little, Brown and Company (Canada) Ltd.


Bolland, O. Nigel. Colonialism and Resistance in Belize, Cubola Productions, Belize 1988



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