Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Captain Calles

On Tuesday I started to explore the background on Carlos Gomez Calles, cousin of my great-grandfather Plutarco Campuzano. Carlos joined the Mexican Army around 1916, serving as a Captain. He was closely associated with his Uncle Plutarco Elias Calles, who was then the military chief of Sonora (later General & Governor, and eventually President of Mexico).
Source: Tribuna de San Luis, 14 Jun 2015.
Captain Calles founded the town of San Luis Rio Colorado, on the US border on 15 March 1917, as an agricultural and military station under orders from the Mexican government. He shows up in US Congressional testimony titled "Investigation in Mexican Affairs" dated 1920, and appears in a FBI file. The Congressional testimony is really interesting and is worth another blog post, with tales of kidnapping, executions, extradition and more.

Calles clearly made some enemies during his time in San Luis. On 13 May 1920, Carlos Calles was shot and killed at San Luis when his station was seized during the Mexican Revolution.
Bisbee Daily Review, 14 May 1920.
Arizona Daily Star, 30 May 1920

The Tombstone Weekly Epitaph reported two of the six alleged murders of Carlos Calles were captured and imprisoned in August 1920.

Today there is a street named after Carlos Gomez Calles (Avenida Carlos G. Calles), it is the main road running along the border between San Luis Rio Colorado, Sonora on the US border with San Luis, Arizona. Anyone driving between the US and Mexico at San Luis today crosses this road.

Captain Calles is buried with his wife, Mary Flynn Calles, in Holy Hope Cemetery in Tucson, Arizona.
Source: Findagrave, photo by K.

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