Justo Rufino Barrios

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Barrios, Justo Rufino


Born 1835 in San Lorenzo; died Apr. 2,1885, in Chalchuapa. Guatemalan statesman and political figure.

In the years 1871–73, Barrios was commander in chief of the army and from 1873 to 1885, president. Although he established a dictatorial regime and proceeded to suppress all opposition, Barrios nevertheless promoted the economic development of the country. He also significantly weakened the influence of the church and placed it under government control. Barrios tried to unify the Central American countries in a confederation. However, these plans met with opposition and led to a war with El Salvador. In the very first battle Barrios was defeated and killed.

References in periodicals archive ?
The project would be built at km 294 on the highway to the Atlantic, in at Justo Rufino Barrios, opposite the Municipal Cemetery of Puerto Barrios.
Justo Rufino Barrios came to power in a coup in 1871 and worked to modernize the country and improve trade.
As he explained in an interview with Esther Allen, "I carried the research up to the United States because I found out a marvelous story about the dictator at the time that Marti was in Guatemala: Justo Rufino Barrios, who fell in love with an eleven-year old girl, when he was about forty.