Introduction: Uncovering Other Pos si ble Worlds
Epigraph: McKittrick, Demonic Grounds, xi, emphasis added.
1. “Acta de la legislatura de la provincia de Cartagena,” 68, 70–71. For a brief
account of “the day cartageneros declared themselves subjects of His Britannic
Majesty,” see Bell Lemus, “Cartagena de Indias británica.” For Cartagena’s short-
lived in de pendence, see Sourdís, Cartagena de Indias. For diﬀ er ent responses to the
French invasion, see Rodríguez O., The In de pendence of Spanish Amer i ca, 51–74;
Dym, From Sovereign Villages, 65–97; Gutiérrez Ardila, Un nuevo reino, 187–233.
2. Bell Lemus, “Cartagena de Indias británica,” 64.
3. For con temporary accounts of the siege, see Rodríguez Villa, El Teniente General,
2:575–578, 2:585–586, 3:9–11; Ducoudray- Holstein, Memoirs of Simón Bolívar,
111–122; Pombo, “Reminiscencias del sitio de Cartagena”; and García del Río,
“Página de oro.” For more recent analyses, see Earle, Spain and the In de pendence,
61–64, 101–104, 147–154; Cuño Bonito, El retorno del rey; and Sourdís, Cartagena de
4. Throughout the colonial period and most of the nineteenth century the po liti-
cal entity we now call Colombia was called New Granada. Until 1819 it was known
as the Viceroyalty of New Granada. Between 1819 and 1830, following the nation’s
Fundamental Law of December 17, 1819, “the republics of Venezuela and New
Granada are . . . united as one, under the glorious title of Colombia” (Article 1).
Since Ec ua dor was part of the former Viceroyalty of New Granada, the new nation’s
territory covered the area that now constitutes the republics of Venezuela, Colombia,
and Ec ua dor, as well as Panama. Starting in 1826, Colombia—or Gran Colombia,
as it has come to be known in the historiography— began to disintegrate until, by
the end of 1830, it broke down into three republics: Ec ua dor, New Granada, and
Venezuela. From then, the territory that now constitutes the Republic of Colombia
adopted several names, including New Granada (1830), Granadan Confederation
(1858), United States of Colombia (1863), and Republic of Colombia (1886). For