Looking for a place in which they could retain their Spanish identity, they focused on Mexico.In 1531 large numbers of them left Spain and Portugal for the New World.A good chunk of northern Mexico, including what’s now Texas and New Mexico were settled by Tlaxcalan and Converso pioneers (the New Mexico “Spanish” are nearly all of Jewish ancestry, according to recent DNA studies).Shep Lenchek’s invaluable three-part series for Mexico Connect, “Jews in Mexico: A Struggle for Survival” notes that while most Mexican Jews are descended from immigrants who arrived between 18, there have always been “Crypto-Jews”: The “Conversos” were under increasing pressure from the Inquisition.However, if you are one of those people who are When I started studying Mexican history, I was surprised at how many of the early colonial leaders were “conversos”…
They settled in Vera Cruz, Campeche, Oaxaca, Guadalajara, Morelia and Mexico City.
By contrast, between 1571 when the Inquisition was established in Mexico and 1821 when it ended, only about 110 people were actually burned at the stake. Suffering from a depression, Mexican labor unions pressured the government to enact restrictions on “Chinese and Jewish” immigration.
Perhaps the same number died under torture or in prison, either awaiting trial or after sentencing. Later in the same decade, neo-Nazi right wingers, financed from Berlin, staged anti-Jewish demonstrations in Mexico City.
Unfortunately, it was also linked to an anti-Semitic website, and I was forced to change the comment settings for this post to require that I approve any new commentator.
At the same time, because I started to get comments on my site from neo (and retro) -Nazis I created a list of key words that would be used in normal discussions on this post’s topics, but would require the post to be approved before it appears. While I hope those that those of you who are looking for this post will spend the time to look at other posts as well, and learn something about the culture and history of Mexico.
But not a single act of violence against Jews or Jewish property can be documented.