Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography/Torre-Tagle, José Bernardo, Marquis de

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TORRE-TAGLE, José Bernardo, Marquis de, president of Peru, b. in Lima, 21 March, 1779; d. in Callao in 1825. He belonged to one of the best families of Spain, attained the rank of colonel of the army, and, being elected deputy to the cortes, was sent to Spain in 1813 with special recommendation for his good services. Being promoted brigadier, he was appointed inspector of the army of Peru and intendant of the department of Trujillo. When Gen. San Martin landed in Peru, Torre-Tagle was the first Peruvian officer to hoist the national flag in the north, and on 24 Dec., 1820, proclaimed independence in Trujillo. On 26 July, 1822, he was appointed provisional president by San Martin when the latter went to meet Bolivar in Guayaquil. After the departure of San Martin for Chili, on 20 Sept., Torre-Tagle was elected member of the triumvirate under La Mar. In January, 1823, congress appointed him president; but a military mutiny deposed him and proclaimed Riva Agüero on 28 Feb. After the deposition of the latter and his retreat to Trujillo, Torre-Tagle was appointed president by Sucre on 20 July, and elected by congress on 16 Aug., and Bolivar, who on his arrival, 1 Sept., had been proclaimed dictator, left him in charge of the government. When the garrison of Callao revolted, 5 Feb., 1824, for arrears of pay, and, Torre-Tagle failing to provide the necessary means, pronounced for Spain, Bolivar sent Gen. Necochea to arrest him, and congress deposed him on 10 Feb. Fearing to be shot by order of a court-martial, he fled to Callao, where the rebels kept him a prisoner, and on the reoccupation of Lima by the Spaniards, he was offered the place as governor of the capital, but declined, preferring to remain a prisoner of war. After the beginning of the siege of Callao, he tried several times to be admitted on board the blockading Chilian fleet, but Admiral Blanco Encalada refused to receive him except as a prisoner, and he perished with his whole family by the disease that was caused by the famine due to the protracted siege. Although he was not a traitor to his country, as charged by his enemies, he caused great misfortunes by his want of energy and vacillating policy.