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Yanga, Veracruz

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Title: Yanga, Veracruz  
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Subject: Gaspar Yanga, Veracruz, 1811 German Coast Uprising, 1733 slave insurrection on St. John, Río Blanco, Veracruz
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Yanga, Veracruz

Municipality and town
Yanga is located in Mexico
Location in Mexico
Country  Mexico
State Veracruz
 • Total 102.82 km2 (39.70 sq mi)
Population (2005)
 • Total 15,547
Time zone Central Standard Time (UTC-6)
 • Summer (DST) Central Daylight Time (UTC-5)

Yanga is a municipality located in the southern area of the State of Veracruz, Mexico, about 80 km from the state capital of Xalapa. Formerly known as San Lorenzo de los Negros or San Lorenzo de Cerralvo, after a Spanish colonial priest, it was renamed in 1932 after Yanga, the cimarron leader who in 1609 led a slave 'rising' against Spanish colonists in the province. He was a chief of the Yang-Bara tribe from the area of present-day Guinea, and the name means "prince" in his language.

Yanga demanded a series of concessions before laying down his weapons, and gained establishment of a free town of former black slaves a few kilometers from the city of Cordoba, Veracruz. It became known as San Lorenzo de los Negros or San Lorenzo de Cerralvo, named after Juan Laurencio, a Jesuit friar who had accompanied an expedition sent by the Viceroy to crush the rebels. After a series of bloody skirmishers in which the Spaniards lost more men than expected, officials reached agreement with Yanga, giving the town of San Lorenzo its "small independence". The black inhabitants of San Lorenzo proclaimed their loyalty to the Church and the King of Spain, but refused to pay tribute to the Spanish government. They also agreed to capture runaway slaves and return them to their masters in return for a fee. In 1932, the town of San Lorenzo was renamed Yanga in honor of the leader of the rebellion.


The municipality of Yanga is bordered to the east by Cuitláhuac, to the north-east by Atoyac and to the south-east by Omealca.[1]


It produces principally maize, beans, sugarcane, coffee and mango.


Every February, a festival is held to celebrate Virgen de Candelaria, the patron of the town, and every December there is a festival held in honour of the Virgin of Guadalupe. A festivity for San Lorenzo, the saint of the town, takes place each August. Every year in mid-August, a carnival is held to celebrate Gaspar Yanga, the former slaves who defeated the Spanish and gained the founding of a free village for former slaves in 1609, said to be the first free black city in the Americas. The 400th anniversary carnival was held in August 2009, four centuries after the town's recapture by the Spanish (though many slaves escaped).


The climate in Yanga is warm and humid, with an average temperature of 18°C and rains mainly in the summer and fall.


  1. ^ "Enciclopedia de los Municipios de México: Yanga" (in Spanish). Gobierno Estatal. Retrieved 2009-06-18.

External links

  • (Spanish) Municipal Official webpage
  • (Spanish) Municipal Official Information
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