Latin American History and Culture: Series 4: Parts 1-7: The Mexican Rare Monograph Collection, 1548-1890
About this Collection
Introduction: Latin AmericanHistory and Culture: Series 4: The Mexican Pamphlet Collection, 1607-1888
Origin of the Sutro Library andtheMexican Collection
Adolph Sutro, born in 1830 to anAlsatian-Jewish family in Aachen, immigrated in 1850 to San Francisco, where hebecame a successful clothier and tobacconist. With the flooding of the ComstockLode in Virgina City, Nevada, Sutro designed the tunnel that bears his name todrain the mines, becoming extremely wealthy as a result. As a real estate speculatorand investor, he bought Sutro Heights and served as a progressive mayor of SanFrancisco, where died in 1898.
As was frecuently the case ofother wealthy individual in the latter nineteenth century, Sutro commencedformation of a great library, not so much as a bibliophile but, more precisely,with the plan of providing a public center for research for San Francisco. In1884, Sutro initiated what would become his renowned acquisitions program bytraveling throughout Europe. There he purchased books and pamphlets in England,Italy, Germany, and France in what could be classified as bulk lots of oftenten to fifteen thousand titles in all conceivable fields of knowledge. InLondon alone it was estimated that he acquired in excess of thirty-five thousandtitles. As might be expected, the problem of space for Sutos purchases grewapace, and he was forced to store his library in crates in office and warehousefacilities on Montogomery Street. This storage problem led to the tragicdestruction of possibly fifty percent of his reputed 250,000-volume collectionduring the earthquake and fire of 1906, when one of his book warehouses wasconsumed in the conflagration. Despite this loss, a good portion of Sutrosholdings remained intact, and in 1913 Sutros surviving library was donated byhis heirs to the California State Library under the proviso that it remain inSan Francisco.
One of the largest segments of thecollection to remain entirely intact following the fire was the great Mexicanacollection of forty to fifty thousand books, pamphlets, broadsides, andmanuscripts, titles acquired by Sutro during a hastily planned trip to MexicoCity in 1889. In Mexico, despite his limited knowledge of the culture,language, and Mexican bibliography, good fortune had smiled upon Sutro. For hisarrival in Mexico had followed upon the death of the owner of Mexico Cityslongest established bookstore and publishing concern, Francisco Abadiano. FromLuis Abadiano, their father, Francisco and his brother Dionisio had inherited abookstore and printing plant located on Calle de las Escalerillas (today,Guatemala) in the heart of the Mexican capital, a concern that had become theculmination of a long and prestigious line of bookmen and printers.
Direct antecedents for Abadianosconcern can be traced to the famed Mexican humanist and bibliographer, JuanJos de Eguiara y Eguren, who founded the Imprenta de la Bibliotheca Mexicanain 1753. Eguiaras shop was subsequently acquired by Licenciado Jos deJuregui in 1767, and a year later Juregui merged his business with the shopof the Herederos de Mara de Ribera. Upon Jureguis death in 1778, theenterprise passed to the Herederos de Jos de Juregui until 1791 when anephew, Bachiller Jos Fernndez Juregui, assumed ownership and directed ituntil his death in 1800. Succession passed to Mara Fernndez de Juregui whodied in 1815, and subsequently, in 1817, the business was sold to AlejandroValds. In his own right, Valds was a well established printer, havingmaintained his own shop from 1808 to 1814, and in 1815 acquiring the equipmentand stock of his famed father, Manuel Antonio Valds y Mungua. The elderValds had served as printer for the Colegio de San Ildefonso of the Society ofJesus until 1767, when he joined the then largest printer in the westernhemisphere, Felipe de Ziga y Ontiveros. There he edited the famed
The wars of independencenotwithstanding, liberalization of freedom of the press through the SpanishConstitution of 1812 substantially expanded printing activities in New Spain,particularly in the area of political tracts and pamphlets. Alejandro Valdscontinued as an active printer, producing, in 1816, Jos Mariano Beristin ySousas classic bibliography, BibliotecaAmericana Septentrional. Following Mexican independence in 1821,Valds acquired the contract as imperial printer of Agustn de Iturbide for theprinting of official documents, and during this time he formed a partnershipwith Luis Abadiano that lasted until the death of Valds in 1831. Between 1825and 1884, the Abadiano family continued to operate both the printing andbookselling enterprises that had evolved out of Eguiaras original shop. Whilethe artistic output of Abadiano did not rival that of contemporaries JosMariano Lara, Vicente Garca Torres, or Ignacio Cumplido, probably the finestprinters in the Americas during the first half of the nineteenth century, theseveral thousand titles produced were of high quality, and the firm wasextremely active as booksellers.
The highly conservative andreligious Abadianos dealt extensively in books and pamphlets relative to theposition of the Church in Mexico. In order to avoid destruction as a result ofthe anticlerical liberal Constitution of 1857, the War of the Reform, andorders for confiscation of religious properties by Ignacio Comonfort and BenitoJurez in 1861, many of the books and manuscripts from the conventual librariesof Mexico City, the oldest in the Americas, were transferred to them byecclesiastical authorities or purchased in trust with the hope of restoringthem at a future date. This long and prestigious lineage of printers andbooksellers ended with the death of Francisco Abadiano in 1883, for his son andheir, Eufemio, apparently lacked the family skills and love of books. In 1885,he attempted to establish a serial publication of Mexican history andliterature by subscription and to produce reproductions of famous Mexicanarchaeological artifacts. This having failed, in 1887 Eufemio Abadianoannounced the auction of his fathers library and art collection, the lattercontaining works by Drer, Murillo, and Goya, and at the same time issued acatalogue remaindering the stock of his fathers publications. The bad fortuneof the Abadianos was the good fortune of Sutro, for the book store on Calle delas Escalerillas not only contained thousands of volumes on Mexican history,literature, religion, philosophy, and political theory, but also multiplecopies of works printed by Ziga y Ontiveros, Juregui, Valds, and the elderAbadianos. Thus, Sutro acquired the cumulative stock of over a century and ahalf of printing and bookselling in Mexico.
The full details of Sutrospurchase from Abadiano have not come to light. Material found within the greatSutro Mexican Collection, however, indicates that it was literally lock,stock, and barrel. Not only did Sutro acquire thousands of individual titlespublished from the sixteenth to the mid-nineteenth century, the largestcollection of nineteenth-century Mexican pamphlets and ephemera in the world,and an extraordinary collection of imprints and manuscripts relative to theChurch in Mexico, but he also landed the remaining multiple copies of thefirms imprints dating from the mid-eighteenth century. Were these purchasesnot sufficient to indicate Sutros unique method of acquisitions, he apparentlywent one step further in the case of Mexico. The very documents which reflectSutros purchases include the Abadiano account ledgers, receipt books,corrected galley proofs, and inventories dating from the late eighteeenthcentury. Sutro probably instructed his agents of buy everything, and theyinterpreted this to mean the contents of the files, desks, and waste paper baskets,thus unknowingly obtaining an excellent collection of documents pertaining tothe history of printing and book-selling in Mexico.
Nature of the Sutro Library Mexican Collection
The Sutro Mexican Collection is ofimmense value for research into the history of Mexican culture, religion, andpolitics from 1540 to 1889, and, since 1980, an active program of acquistion ofmodern supporting materials relative to history, geography, archival sources,and bibliography has added several thousand titles to the collection to enhanceits use by researchers. Special concentration has also added rare pamphlets,broadsides, histories, biographies, and lithographic works to the nucleusestablished by Sutro. Also aiding research, a representative collection ofseventeenth- to nineteenth-century maps, atlases, and ephermera, as well as anextensive collection of Spanish imprints from the sixteenth to nineteenthcenturies, most of which were also purchased from Abadiano, supplement theSutro Mexican Collection.
To facilitate consultation andresearch, the Sutro Mexican Collection is divided into four major sections:Pamphlets, Manuscripts, Library of the Colegio Imperal de Santa Cruz deTlatelolco, and General Imprints. The first of these is subdivided into boundpamphlets (tomos de varios), singlepamphlets, and decrees, bandos, and proclamations; and the fourth into thesubsection of Mexican Lithography. The general rule for inclusion into theMexican Collection is that the title be printed, or written in the case of manuscripts,in New Spain/Mexico between 1521 and 1890, or that the work treat specificallyof New Spain/Mexico, regardless of its place or origin, during the same timespan.
The Sutro Mexican Collection, withthe exception of the Sutro Mexican Pamphlet Collection and ManuscriptCollection, has been cataloged under the rules of the Library of Congress byHispanex (California Spanish Language Data Base) in collaboration with theCalifornia State Library. This cataloging has been entered on the MELVYL Catalogdatabase of the University of California and on the California State Libraryelectonic catalogs. Special added entries, including Mexican printers,Tlatelolco, and Guadalupanismo, enhance access to special areas of thecollection.
Published access to variousaspects of the collections is listed in the bibliography below.
Mexican Monographsand Serials
As a result of the Abadiano acquisition of books andmanuscripts from Franciscan convents, the Sutro Mexican Collection contains thebulk of the surviving books of the earliest academic library in the WesternHemisphere, that of the Imperial College of Santa Cruz de Tlatelolco founded in1535 by Bishop Juan de Zumrraga, O.F.M., and Viceroy Antonio de Mendoza. Twoof the volumes in the Tlatelolco collection are signed by Zumrraga, and manyothers are signed by other famous Franciscans of sixteenth century New Spain.Among these imprints are five European incunabula from the Convento de Santiagode Tlatelolco, one from the Colegio Imperial de Santa Cruz, four from theConvento de San Antonio de Texcoco, and two others of undetermined provenancebut also acquired by Sutro from Abadiano. In addition to the 277 titles ofsixteenth century imprints from the library of the Colegio Imperial de SantaCruz de Tlatelolco, six titles from San Andrs Chiautla, thirty-two from SanAntonio de Texcoco, nine from San Francisco de Mxico, and one each from SanBernardino de Xochimilco, San Cosm de Mxico, San Francisco de Pachuca, SanLuis de Huexotla, and Santa Mara de los Angeles de Churubusco represent otherFranciscan libraries. Further, from Jesuit colleges, one title from SanGregorio de Guadalajara, two from San Ildefonso de Puebla, and six from theColegio Mximo de San Pedro y San Pablo de Mxico; from Carmelite hermitages,one title each from Nuestra Seora del Carmen de Toluca and San Joaqun deTacuba, and two from San Sebastin de Mxico; from the Augustinian monastary ofSan Agustn de Puebla three titles; and one title from the Dominican monastaryof Santo Domingo de Mxico, demonstrate the breadth of acquisitions of earlybooks from conventual libraries.
The section of General Imprints covers all aspects ofMexican culture, however, there are several areas in which it is particularlyrich, In many instances this is due to the presence of imprints once notconsidered worthy of cataloging and space by many libraries. In that mostpublications of the three-century colonial period were religious in nature, thehistory of the Church is very well represented in the Sutro collection bythousands of titles of theological studies, confessionaries, liturgical manualsand breviaries, catechisms, devotionaries, and sermons. In addition to numeroustitles in these fields, moral philosophy and sermons include the works of JosAntonio Alcocer, Diego Miguel Bringas y Encinas, Cayetano Cabrera y Quintero,Ramn Casaus y Torres, Juan Benito Daz de Gamarra, Francisco de Florencia,Jos Ignacio Heredia y Sarmiento, Bartolom Felipe de Ita y Parra, FranciscoJavier Lazcano, Antonio Lpez Murto, Juan Martnez de la Parra, Juan AnselmoMoral y Castillo de Altra, Clemente de Jess Mungua, Pablo de Olavide, JuanAntonio de Oviedo, Jos Antonio Plancarte, Francisco Roxas Andrade, Jos ManuelSartorio, Jos Francisco Valds, Hermenegildo de Vilaplana, Jos Mara Zelaa eHidalgo, as well as those of numerous famed European preachers and moraltheologians in translation. Perhaps unique is the collection of over 1,50012mo. and 16mo. novenas and devotionaries, many with woodcuts or engravings,reflecting popular universal and regional devotions. Researcher will alsodiscover numerous offices, breviaries, liturgy, sacraments, manuals, rules ofthe Augustinian, Carmelite, Dominican, Hieronomite, Jesuit, Mercedarian, andOratorian (San Felipe Neri) orders, as well as convents of nuns, along withedifying letters, biographies of religious, and pastoral letters of thearchdiocese of Mexico and provincial dioceses. Religio-political sermonspublished during the Wars of Independence, 1810-1820, are well covered, as isthe restoration of the Society of Jesus in 1816, with works including those ofJos Mariano Dvila y Arrillaga, Carlos Mara de Bustamante, and AgustnPomposo Fernndez de San Salvador. Many religious as well as secular imprintsalso cover the ongoing conflict of Church and State between 1824 and 1888.
Of special contemporary interest, given the canonization ofJuan Diego, the Sutro collection of works includes many titles relative to OurLady of Guadalupe. To distinguish from the medieval apparition of the Virgin atGuadalupe in Spain, the reported apparitions at Tepeyac outside of Mexico Cityin December, 1531 may well have had a greater impact upon the WesternHemisphere than any other single event during the past five centuries. In 1556,Archbishop Alonso de Montfar established a hermitage on Tepeyac, and in 1622,Archbishop Juan Prez de la Serna founded the sanctuary of Our Lady ofGuadalupe there. Between 1695 and 1709, a large baroque sanctuary replacedthis, and in 1737, devotion was formalized with declaration of Our Lady ofGuadalupe as patroness of Mexico City, then as now, the largest metropolis inthe Western Hemisphere. On 12 December 1746, a papal decree established thefeast of Our Lady of Guadalupe of Mexico on that same day, and over theintervening years various popes have decreed devotion and patronage of thisuniquely Mexican avocation. Over 400 titles printed prior to Mexicanindependence relative to Guadalupanismo are found in the Sutro MexicanCollection. Included are Luis Becerra Tancos Felicidad de Mxico en la Admirable Aparicin de la Virgen Mara,Nuestra Seora de Guadalupe invarious editions dating from 1675; LaEstrella de El Norte de Mxico by Francisco de Florencia, S.J., of1688; the Escudo de Armas de Mxico,by Cayetano de Cabrera y Quintero of 1746; Maravilla Mexicana byMiguel Cabrera, and Miguel Venegas; HymnusEucharisticus in laudem mae.
The political upheavals of nineteenth-century Mexico arewell covered with numerous political sermons and pastoral letters, treatises onthe impact of the Napoleonic invasion of Spain and the restoration of FernandoVII, constitutionalism, royalism, insurgency, the empire of Agustn de Iturbide,and the republicanism of Antonio Lpez de Santa Anna. Over 1,000 decrees,proclamations, and public notices of viceroys Calleja and Venadito, Iturbide,the Constitutional Congress, Arrillaga, Santa Anna, Maximillian, and othernational and state administrations from 1810 to 1870, reflect political change,taxation, customs, and military organization, as do the published compilationsof laws and legal briefs. An essentially complete collection of the annualreports of national ministries from 1822 to 1860 reflect official actions alongwith numerous diplomatic documents and treaties. The extensive collection ofofficial publications of the State of Mexico between 1821 and 1840 is alsonoteworthy, as are files of government documents regarding economic and industrialdevelopment between 1830 and 1860.
A gift of materials relative to the war between the UnitedStates and Mexico (1846-1848) by Norman Tutorow substantially enhanced thatarea of the collection, and active acquisition in relationship to the sesquicentennialof the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo (1848) incorporating Alta California intothe United States, has also greatly augmented this collection with both Mexicanand United States imprints.
The serials section of the collection, with over 100 titles,is also extensive. It contains complete runs of the earliest newspaper in theAmericas, Gaceta de Mxico,and political-official serials: Diariode Mxico,
Many serials and calendars also form part of the importantMexican lithography holdings.
The lithographers art was probably initiated in Mexicoprior to any other American nation, and such Mexican lithographers as Iriarte,Salazar, Castro, and Garcs were among the greatest masters of the art, workingin concert with printers during the nineteenth century typographic renaissancein Mexico to illustrate books or produce great albums of plates. Extraordinaryillustrated works came from the presses of Ignacio Cumplido, Jos Mariano Lara,Murgua, and Vicente Garca Torres, but over the years plates were removed frommany books and albums for framing, thus making complete illustrated works difficultto obtain. Additions to the nuclear collection have been made since 1980,including the extremely rare LosNios Pintados por Ellos Mismos, El Museo Mexicano, Miscelanea Pintoresco de Amenidades Curiosas Instructivas, the extraordinarily rare Vida de Jesucristo, sacada de la Historia de Bossuet (1843)by Jacques Bnigne Bossuet, a work entirely printed by lithography, and AndrsManuel del Ros Manual deGeologa, extractado de la Lethaea Geognstica de Bronn, con los Animales yVegetales Perdidos, que ya no existen, mas caractersticas de cada roca, ycon algunas aplicaciones a los criaderos de esta Republica para uso del ColegioNacional de Mineria,illustrating the then new sciences of geology and paleontology. Also,complementing Sutros copy of Gustavo Baz and Eduardo L. Gallos
Also frequently ignored as unimportant are several hundredtitles of treatises and textbooks related to the teaching of and study methodsfor grammar and modern European and Classical languages, orthography andcalligraphy, rhetoric, theater, mathematics, general science, medicine, moralphilosophy, and recreation. Mexican editions of classical and popularliterature, and the complete works of Jos Joaqun Fernndez de Lizardi, someunique copies, as well as writings of other Mexican literati of the nineteenthcentury, are also preserved, as are various grammars and dictionaries in theNhutl language, including those of Horacio Carochi, Pedro de Arenas, andFaustino Chimalpopocatl Galicia.
Research inMonographs and Serials in the Sutro Collection of Mexicana
In general, the Sutro Mexican Collection has beenunderutilized by researchers in Mexican history and culture, both pre- andpostdoctoral. Of great importance to the researcher is the unusual fact thatthe Sutro collection has been retained in-bloc since its purchase in 1889 andit is, therefore, similar to a late nineteenth-century Mexican bookstore. Therehas been no culling of the collection, as frequently occurs in other academiclibraries, of material judged to be lacking in academic value, such as popularliterature and theater, calendars and almanacs, or overly emotional andsubjective, such as edifying letters, sermons, novenas, and devotionaries.Thus, the collection offers special opportunities for research in popularculture during the sixteenth to nineteenth centuries, especially in matters ofreligion; secular, political and religious literature; theater; education; andgraphic arts, printing, and publication.
As interrelated holdings, research in the Sutro MexicanCollection must include consultation of the librarys Mexican PamphletCollection of some 12,000 to 15,000 pamphlets printed between 1605 and 1888,the largest collection of its kind in the world. While the pre-1810 titles aregenerally religious in nature (theological treatises, devotionaries, andsermons), the post-1810 material is principally political and secular (tracts,speeches, laws, and ministerial reports) and represents virtually every aspectof Mexican government, society, and culture. Similarly, consultation of the MexicanManuscript Collection, containing a large number of seminary copybooks from theseventeenth and eighteenth centuries, plays, poetry, music, military orders,sermons, and documents relative to land holdings, and, of special interest,copies of religious, historical, and literary works submitted for publicationto the Abadianos and their predecessors, the records, inventories, andcorrespondence of the Valds and Abadiano printing and bookselling enterprisesfrom 1815 to 1884 must not be overlooked. Card catalogs of these collectionsare available at the library, and printed guides to them are cited in thebibliography below.
Orden Mexicana del Aguila Azteca
Honorary Curator, Mexican Collection
Published Guides To the Sutro Library Mexican Collection:
Dillon, Richard H. TheAnatomy of a Library.Sacramento: California State Library, 1957.
Koegel, John. New Sources of Music from Spain and Colonial Mexico at The SutroLibrary, Notes of the MusicLibrary Association 55(March, 1999), 583-613.
____. Nuevas fuentes musicales para danza, teatro y saln de la Nueva Espaa,Heterofona 116/117(Enero-Diciembre, 1997), 9-37.
Kurutz, Gary F., and W. Michael Mathes. The Forgotten War: The Conflict Between Mexico and The United States1846-1849. Sacramento:California State Library Foundation, 2003.
Mathes, W. Michael. Adolph Sutros Incunabula from Mexico: A Study ofProvenance, QuarterlyNewsletter-The Book Club of California XLVI (Fall, 1981), 103-105.
____. The Americas First Academic Library, Santa Cruz de Tlatelolco.Sacramento: California State Library Foundation, 1985.
____. A Bibliophiles Dream: Adolph Sutro in Mexico,
____. Bibliotheca NovohispanaGuadalupana. Mxico:Centro de Estudios de Historia de Mxico Condumex, 2003..
____. La Coleccin Mexicana de Ia Biblioteca Sutro de San Francisco,California, Quinto Centenario2 (1981), 213-215.
____. Early Books from Mexican Monastic Libraries in the Sutro Library,
____. Mexican Lithography at Sutro, CaliforniaState Library Foundation Bulletin 18 (January, 1987), 6-7.
____. Mexican Manuscripts in the Sutro Library, San Francisco: A Catalog,
____. The Mexican Railroad at Sutro, California State Library Foundation Bulletin 21 (October,1987), 6-9.
____. Mxico en Piedra: Lalitografa en Mxico (1826-1900). Guadalajara: Gobierno del Estado de Jalisco. Guadalajara:Imprejal, S.A., 1990.
____. Mexico on Stone: Lithography in Mexico, 1826-1900. SanFrancisco: The Book Club of California, 1984
____. Mexico on Stone at Sutro: Recent Acquisitions,
____. Our Lady of Guadalupe in the Sutro Library, California State Library Foundation Bulletin 40 (July,1992), 19-22.
____. Santa Cruz de Tlatelolco: Laprimera biblioteca acadmica de las Amricas. Mxico
____. The Sutro Library Collection of Mexicana, California State Library Foundation Bulletin 15 (April,1985), 4-9.
____. Sutro Mexicana: An Update, CaliforniaState Library Foundation Bulletin 17 (October, 1985), 11-13.
___, and Mara Isabel Gran Porra. LaIlustracin en Mexico Colonial- El Grabado en Madera y Cobre en Nueva Espaa1539-1821 - Illustration in Colonial Mexico-Woodcuts and Copper Engravings inNew Spain 1539-1821. Zapopan:El Colegio de Jalisco, 2001.
Radin, Paul, ed. Catalogue ofMexican Pamphlets in the Sutro Collection 1623-1888; With Supplements.California State Library 1939-1941 (W.P.A.). (New York: Kraus Reprint, 1971)