José Manuel de la Peña y Peña was a Mexican politician and lawyer, interim president of Mexico from 26 September 1847 to 13 November 1847 and president from 8 January 1848 to 3 June 1848.
Manuel de la Peña y Peña was born in the Viceroyalty of New Spain (colonial México). He was a scholarship student at Seminario Conciliar. He graduated in civil and ecclesiastical jurisprudence on 16 December 1811 as valedictorian of his class. Career Mexico
On 26 December 1813, he was named a trustee of the Mexico City government. On 23 February 1820, he was named by the Crown to the Audiencia of Quito, a position he was unable to fill because of the 1821 independence of Mexico.
From 10 April 1822, he was a public prosecutor, at a very young age for this position. On 21 October 1822, Emperor Agustín de Iturbide named him minister plenipotentiary to Colombia, but he was unable to occupy this position either, because of the fall of the empire. After the promulgation of the federal constitution, which created the Mexican Supreme Court, he was named to a seat in that body (25 December 1824). Except for a few short gaps, he retained this position until his death.
On 22 April 1837, he was named Minister of the Interior, and on 16 November 1838 he was appointed to the Supremo Poder Conservador. He was also a law professor at Universidad Nacional de México, president of the Academy of Jurisprudence, and rector of the College of Lawyers. On 4 December 1841, he was named to edit the Civil Code.
On 3 October 1843, he was designated a senator of the Republic, and he was reelected to that position on 19 November 1845. In 1845, he was also Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of the Interior, and plenipotentiary to negotiate an extradition treaty with the Spanish envoy. Presidency
In 1847, because of the governmental chaos after the United States occupation of the capital, Peña y Peña assumed the interim presidency of the country in his capacity as president of the Supreme Court and by act of Congress. He served from 26 September to 13 November 1847, when he was replaced by Pedro María Anaya. The government was at that time in Querétaro. He was later named president in his own right (not interim) from 8 January to 3 June 1848. The state of Yucatán had seceded from the federation, Michoacán declared sovereignty, and many other states were ignoring the federal government.
During his term of office, the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, which ended the war with the United States, was negotiated and signed. Negotiations began on 2 January 1848 and concluded on 2 February. Mexico ceded Texas, New Mexico and Alta California to the United States and received a payment of 15 million dollars.
The treaty had much opposition in Congress, which was meeting in Querétaro, but considering the state of the country and the inability to continue the war, Congress ratified it on 13 May 1848. With the conclusion of the treaty, Peña y Peña resigned the presidency and returned to the Supreme Court. Congress elected General José Joaquín de Herrera president.
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