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Latin American perspectives a program of comment and analysis about current Latin American problems and their historical setting. A commentator for these programs is Dr. C. Harvey Gardner research professor of history at Southern Illinois University. Here now is Dr. Gardner. Ours is said to be the century of the common man. Many historians responding to democratic forces have moved from the great man thesis of history to the study of isolated but typical little man. A decade ago I published a volume entitled Martine lope is the door citizen of Mexico a case study of one representative fighter who stayed on to become landholder husband parent officeholder litigant. All that and much more in the course of several decades of life in Mexico.
Now we have a composite social view of conquerors becoming settled citizens in Peru. This is the work of James Lockhart the volume is entitled Spanish Peru 15 30 to 15 60 a colonial society. The book is published by the University of Wisconsin Press. Numerous sources but above all the Peruvian notarial records were searched through Phar Lockhart study with the general purpose of determining who the settlers of Peru were and what they did. What resulted can be considered social history and it is here organized into a series of chapters on various social groups. The categories dictated by common sense rather than logic. Follow closely the labels used by the Spaniards of the sixteenth century when they attempted to classify themselves
in legal records. Chronicles and ordinary speech emphasis in Lockhart's work is on a broad picture of society rather than on social theories or concepts. Each chapter aims to give a general description of the characteristics and functions of a group as well as to outline the lives of some typical or otherwise significant representative of that group. They're organized by social groups. The study contains much material on the economy and other substantive matters in the Spanish Indies. Even more than in most societies function determine status. Consequently if one is interested in who the settlers were it is necessary to know in fact there is no better way to know than to describe them by what they did. But the book falls short indeed intentionally
stop short of being a total history of Peru for that period 15 30 to 15 60. It contains no systematic treatment of administrative or military or intellectual affairs. These are matters which have already received considerable attention in the past. Further limitation is the almost total focus on an internal view of Peru and what the Spaniards did there. Since then this telling of life in Peru in early decades of Spanish power there in the 16th century is based on the writings of notaries. It is well to realize and understand just what the notary was what he did that he could leave such a rich record for the historian to work with. The principal beneficiaries of the Spaniards in ordinate respect for the written word were the bottom rank of the professional
class. The innumerable notaries who witnessed every phase of the conquest and occupation of Peru from beginning to end notaries were present without exception on the most adventurous expeditions of discovery in the smallest towns in every mining camp where ever there were groups of Spaniards to histories again. At our day and time there was hardly anything that the Spaniards did not know to rise from the act of taking possession of the Pacific as Balboa did it to a rebel captain's declaration that he was fighting the Royal Army unwillingly. One day in fifteen forty four two shoe makers walked into a notary's office on Lima's main square and had an impressive document drawn up devoted to nothing other than the simple fact that they had that day arrived in Lima. Trials and
investigations of all kinds also made heavy demands upon the notary's for Spanish trials were written affairs a notary took all the testimony in writing before the judges saw it. Even attorneys briefs and petitions passed through a notary's hands given then the Spanish love of litigation and the peculiar turn in which this litigation took the form in which it had to be cast. The notary's give us a peculiarly good and complete record of the life of the times notaries were not only or even mainly scribes because literacy was a wide enough among those Spanish conquerors that they didn't need scribes except on the secretarial level. Some of the notary's wrote in beautiful hands easily read others so scribbled as perhaps to approximate the genius. They were primarily experts in legal formulas
and terminology who could draw up a power of attorney or a petition in the correct form. The notary was the versatile workhorse of the Spanish government. The governor secretaries the court clerks lower level Treasury officials untitled attorneys even chroniclers were all variations of the notary and all had the same training a training that was almost completely practical. After grammar school the individual who wanted to become a notary was put to an apprenticeship in the office of a notary public and the training was complete before the age of 20. He then negotiated at court for a permanent title as his Majesty's notary which however was not the same as the right to set up an office to do the latter. The notary had to acquire a specific material office in a specific city or
town either through purchase or through political favor. The relative ease and experience of training meant that the notary's career was available to men from a wide variety of backgrounds. More so than such professions as law and medicine for example. There were notaries who were a doll goes of good standing their mothers and sisters being gone yes their brothers on the council of some Spanish city. There were others who were of families of merchants both small and well-to-do. Since the trade was learned through apprenticeship a corps of notaries came from the families which had long been handling notarial affairs from father to son and finally a good proportion of the notary's did come out of the artisan class. The sons of men who were carpenters are shoemakers over the years the notary's appropriated more and more into themselves. The
dollar gold status but they insisted that all of them should be because indeed some actually were. I would remind you it was a day when the notary's could profit by the close association in the minds of fellow Spaniards between the nobility and the holding of municipal office of any kind. From the records then grown up by notaries dealing with any and every aspect of life be it a social or economic or political something that would call for your wanting it in writing you're wanting proof you're wanting it in legal form. The records piled up in the archives of the Indies in Spain and to them James Lockhart to resort when he wrote his volume of Spanish Peru 15 30 to 15 60. We have in addition to the general pattern of activities of the men who
own property the professional men the merchants the women the artisan class the trenchant. We have in addition to the generalized views of such people as in Peru a little case study is that on occasion let us appreciate what happens to a specific individual. There is no area of life that was more intriguing. Of course to the prospect of building up a Spanish culture in the new world then was that of marriage. And this in turn calls to mind the dowery both partners in a marriage were of course seeking the best possible lineage in the other party. But the classic type of match in Peru was that in which the man had acquired wealth or power and now wanted to gain matching social prestige by marrying a woman of higher birth. The often
poor in these cases the man contributed a large dowry. Perhaps many thousands of pesos reversing the traditional process almost always the fiction was maintained that the dowry originated with the wife or her relatives but occasionally the man alleging the custom of the Indies would grant the sum openly in consideration of the lady's virginity and higher birth. However if the higher lineage was on the man's side the dowery did revert to its traditional form and come from the purse of the family of the bride to be. Some landowners paid princely dollar is as their daughters entered marriage dowries of twenty thousand pesos or over. And this of course meant that those sisters or daughters were marrying members of the Spanish nobility. The women of course played a great role
in the establishment of Spanish culture by virtue of the fact that these Spanish women were teaching Indian women their servants. The Spanish language. They were of course educating the sons and daughters who became that second generation. And it is in reference to the second generation that we have the cut off point for this volume. It's 15 60. The end of the line for Lockhart study. Not because it's the end of Spanish power or the end of Spanish society but because a second generation and a new and different Spaniard has come upon the scene. And this gives rise to his closing out his study of those who came as fighters and lingered as settlers and founded families and introduced Spanish culture to Peru. In the course of his study we have the notary Pedro de Salinas looked at in detail the merchant Baltazar a day or mentor the tailor. Domingo de S3 the ship master untold they rode us.
Latin American perspectives
Spanish Peru, 1532-1560
Producing Organization
WSIU 8 (Television station : Carbondale, Ill.)
Southern Illinois University at Carbondale
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University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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This program focuses on "Spanish Peru, 1532-1560" by James Lockhart.
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A series of comment and analysis about current affairs in Latin American countries.
Global Affairs
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Producing Organization: WSIU 8 (Television station : Carbondale, Ill.)
Producing Organization: Southern Illinois University at Carbondale
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 68-3-29 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:13:28
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Chicago: “Latin American perspectives; Spanish Peru, 1532-1560,” 1968-04-29, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed August 9, 2022,
MLA: “Latin American perspectives; Spanish Peru, 1532-1560.” 1968-04-29. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. August 9, 2022. <>.
APA: Latin American perspectives; Spanish Peru, 1532-1560. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from