Historical Figures

Pedro de Toledo y Leyva

Pedro de Toledo y Leyva (1585 – 1654) was the XV Viceroy of Peru and the first Marquis of Mancera. He was born in Madrid around 1585. Son of Don Luis de Toledo and Doña Isabel de Leyva. In his own words, he "had grown up in the galleys, and the navy was his profession and hobby." He participated in the campaign that Prince Doria led against Algiers (1601) and in command of five galleys intervened in the defense of the Strait of Gibraltar, attacked by the Moors (1607). He was later appointed to the council of Naples and served as governor in Galicia and in Oran.
Gentleman of the king's chamber and holder of the Esparragal encomienda in the order of Alcántara. He was honored with the Marquis of Mancera dignity in 1623.

Appointment of Pedro de Toledo as viceroy

He occupied a position as minister in the council of war when on February 24, 1638 the royal dispatches were signed that invested him as viceroy, governor and captain general of Peru and president of the audience of Lima.
He embarked in Cádiz together with his wife, Doña María Luisa de Salazar y Enríquez, and his son, Don Antonio Sebastián de Toledo. After a long journey, he was solemnly received in Lima on December 18, 1639. His period of nine years, dense with governmental actions, places this character in a prominent position within the series of viceroyalty leaders of the 17th century. Given the frequent raids by pirates, and advised by his military experience, he ordered the fortification of Callao with a wall of thirteen bastions and 75 heavy-caliber cannons (1640) . He was also in charge of erecting forts and surveillance garrisons in the ports of Arica and Valdivia, introduced the use of sealed paper, ordered the sale and composition of land throughout the entire viceroyalty, a mechanism thanks to which he collected two million pesos for the crown. In 1645 he visited the quicksilver mines of Huancavelica, in order to reform its administration and ensure the supply of the liquid metal. He promoted "the conservation, good treatment and relief of the Indians", but recognizing that they had the corregidores, priests and caciques as enemies, who showed no concern for obeying the provisions dictated for the protection of the native subjects. The continuous advance of the Portuguese merchants gave him reason, finally, to take some measures in defense of Buenos Aires. He handed over the command of the Peruvian viceroyalty on September 20, 1648 to his successor, García Sarmiento de Sotomayor, Count of Salvatierra. Don Pedro de Toledo y Leyva was successful in the residence trial, made the trip back to the metropolis and died in the court of Madrid on March 9, 1654.

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