On October 8th, the Estado Libre y Soberano de Quintana Roo (Free and Sovereign State of Quintana Roo) celebrated 39 years in existence.  To commemorate the event, Profesor Velio Vivas, the oficial historian of Cozumel, has written a short summary of our state’s history

Although its history goes back almost two thousand years, the administrative division known today as Quintana Roo has been acknowledged as such only a little over a century, and not just as part of another political division.

As a matter of fact, during pre-Hispanic times our State was formed by four chieftainships: Ecab, Uaymil, Cochuá y Chactemal, from the north to the south, all of these part of the Mayan world.

During the Spanish colony (1521-1821) the area was incorporated into the Captaincy General of Yucatan; a situation that prevailed when the Independence was consummated.

The changes began on 1847 when Maya farmers, weary of centuries of exploitation, rose in arms in what has been called as the War of Castes.

For over 50 years they lived beyond the control of the Mexican government, fighting against it with the support of the authorities of the English colony of Belize. Only the recently repopulated Cozumel, Isla Mujeres and Contoy remained under Yucatecan control.

By November 24, 1901, the federal government had created the Federal Territory segregating the eastern coast of the peninsula and the islands from Yucatan with rulers arriving from the central parts of the county; and until October 8, 1974 the Free and Sovereign State of Quintana Roo was created.

Thus the history yet to be written of a political autonomy that this week turns just 39 years was achieved. Back then there were only 100,000 inhabitants, and now we exceed a million. Then, there were 7 municipalities, and now we are 10. How far will we go? It’s entirely up to us.

Professor Velio Vivas Valdes, the official “cronista,” or historian of the island, most notably, his publication entitled “Forjadores,” (Founders) which chronicles much of the early history of the island.  Additionally, he has written a book, which is also available on-line regarding Hurricane Wilma and Cozumel.  A Cozumel island resident since his birth here in 1943, Professor Vivas V. has published much of his writing and Cozumel’s history in his official webpage.

This story originally appeared in the weekly Cozumel 4 You NEWS – the island’s number one source of positive information about our island!  Be sure and subscribe to the weekly NEWS to find out all the island events!…

Laura Wilkinson

Author at Cozumel 4 You
An ex-Connecticut Yankee who has called Cozumel home for over 18 years, Laura ran away to the Caribbean years ago, bumped around the islands teaching SCUBA diving, lost some time in Jamaica, and finally stopped in Cozumel for a 2 week vacation that hasn’t ended yet. With a degree in Journalism from a fancy private college she convinced her parents to pay for, Laura writes, edits, and creates the weeklyCozumel 4 You news,social media, and promotional articles about the island, as well as moderates the Cozumel 4 You Facebook group, which currently has over 25,000 members. Her long suffering husband, Fabian, has long since resigned himself to having zero private life, as he’s been involved in her various schemes and plots since his arrival. Proud parents to a variety of rescue dogs and cats, Laura continues to be the bane of her traditional Mexican mother-in-law’s existence, as she muses her way through life in the Mexican Caribbean.
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Una ex yanqui de Connecticut quien llama hogar a Cozumel desde hace más de 15 años. Laura escapó al Caribe hace años, desplazándose de una isla a otra dando clases de BUCEO. Se dedicó a perder el tiempo en Jamaica y finalmente se detuvo en Cozumel para pasar unas vacaciones de 2 semanas que aún no terminan. Convenciendo a sus padres que pagaran una elegante universidad privada, obtuvo su título en Periodismo y Laura crea semanalmente Cozumel 4You, medios sociales y artículos promocionales sobre la Isla y también es moderadora en el grupo Cozumel 4 You en Facebook que actualmente cuenta con 25,000 miembros. Fabián, s umuy tolerante marido, desde hace mucho tiempo se resignó a no tener vida privada, pues se ha visto implicado en los diversos proyectos y planes que urde Laura. Son orgullosos padres de diversos perros y gatos rescatados. Mientras contempla su paso a través de la vida en el Caribe mexicano,Laura continúa siendo la pesadilla en la existencia de su muy tradicional suegra mexicana.

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