“Hacienda del Apantle de la Santa Cruz, recuerdos de sus alrededores”
Francisco Ayala was born in 1760 in San José Mapachtlan, today Ciudad Ayala, and died in Yautepec in June of 1812. He was a captain of the rural police of the New Spain who, after his wife was assassinated by the royal militias, decided to join the insurgents during the war of Independence.
When he was captain of the Agreed Court he collaborated to eliminate the thieves in the valley of Cuautla. When the rebel uprising began in Dolores Hidalgo, the Commander Joaquín Garcilazo tried to force Francisco Ayala to join the Royalist ranks. However, Ayala decided to remain with his family at the hacienda of Mapachtlan. This denial provoked distrust on the part of the authorities of the New Spain.
Around those days, when the Royalist Commander Moreno murdered the rebel J. Toledano, he found among his belongings a series of letters written to him by the also rebel Ignacio Ayala, who, by orders of José Maria Morelos, was in charge of El Veladero. This originated an unfortunate confusion. Moreno thought that Francisco Ayala was a rebel and ordered his capture. So on the 16th of May of 1811 at 2:00PM when Francisco Ayala was eating with his family, two royalist soldiers ordered by Commander Moreno fired shots on the front of his home. Francisco Ayala’s wife was hurt by a bullet which went through the walls of the house.
Ayala made use of his gun and shot the soldier Piñaga and made the other one escape on his horse to seek refuge in Anenecuilco. The royalist troops set fire to the house where Francisco Ayala’s wife lay dying with her baby child in her arms. Ayala, on his part, barricaded himself with his two older sons and a group of men in the dome of the church. When Moreno discovered where they were he followed them and surrounded them. This fight lasted a long time, but finally the royalists had to draw back.
Ayala then made his way to Huichila, close to Tenextepango, where he was informed that his wife had died in Cuautla three days after the attack of the soldiers of Moreno and that his son had been saved. So Ayala decided on revenge, went to Chilapa and joined the insurgent army in charge of José María Morelos who named him Coronel and put him in charge of recruiting more troops.
During the first months of 1812 Francisco Ayala participated in the Site of Cuautla at the orders of Hermenegildo Galeana. When the site was listed he was one of the first present at Chiautla de la Sal. After a campaign through the valley of Cuernavaca he spent some time at the hacienda of Temilpa, close to San Gabriel, because he didn’t feel well. In the month of June, Ayala was surprised by Gabriel de Armijo —who Calleja had entrusted to exterminate the Insurgents- as well as one hundred and fifty lancers of the company of Cuautla. Ayala, his two sons and a group of thirty Insurgents did their best to resist the attack, but they were finally conquered. Ayala and his two sons were shot at the entrance to Yautepec. On the 13th of May, 1868, the name of the town was changed in his honor from San Jose de Mapachtlan to Villa Ayala.
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