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The Kingdom of New Granada (Spanish: Reino de la Nueva Granada) is a nation located in OTL Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, parts of Brazil, and parts of Peru.
Native culture in New Granada, although ancient, spread out and well developed, is not so impressive as those in the Mexican Empire, the Mayab, or the Perú-Bolivian Confederation. However, local indigenous tribes did exist and formed incredible cultures.
The main native cultures in New Granada were:
- The Tierradentro and San Agustín sites in what today is the Neiva and Mariquita regions in the department of Colombia;
- The Tayrona culture in what today is the region of Santa Marta, especially in its Sierra Nevada;
- The Muisca tribe in between the Santa Fe and Pamplona regions,
- The Quimbaya tribes in Antioquia and Socorro regions;
- The Wayúu cultures in the Río Hacha and Maracaibo areas;
- The Shuar culture in the Quito, Maynas and Popayán regions;
- And the many undiscovered cultures in southern Venezuela, especially the Guayana region.
Only the Tierradentro, San Agustín, Muisca and Quimbaya tribes in Colombia created advanced, sedentary regions. Tierradentro and San Agustín created large buildings and statues in the towns they constructed, although they didn't conquer large swaths of territory in Colombia, and mostly stayed within the fertile valleys in which their towns were located. The San Agustín culture, for example, only had three permanent settlements, two of which were destined for ceremonial purposes.
The Muisca and Quimbaya tribes, in the contrary, were large cultural regions, which, although lacked proper settlements (The largest of which was Muiscan Guatavita, called by the Spaniards El Dorado), had thriving civilizations, famous for its intensive production of orfebrery, ceramic, salt and wool. The Spaniard name for certain areas, "El Dorado", was named because of a legend of a tribal leader who bathed himself in gold powder and later swam in a river after sinking a boat coated with gold.
The other cultures around OTL New Granada, such as the Caribs or the Shuar were mostly war-like, trying to conserve isolation and their own culture around local invaders. The Caribs were common for eating their dead enemies after battles. Their traditional rivals, the Taínos, were much more peaceful, and lived on the many Neogranadine-held territories on the Caribbean. The Shuar were able to expel Quechua and Aymara migrations into their Ecuatorian holdings, and were famous for reducing their enemies' heads.
The XV and very early XVI Centuries brought large amounts of Quechua migration onto Ecuador as the Incan Empire conquered most of the southern Shuar regions, confining the Shuar and the other indigenous Equatorian tribes into their respective warring cores while they settled much of the new areas. One Incan emperor was so in love with the lands of Ecuador that he founded an auxiliary capital in the area.
This period was interrupted by the Spanish conquistadors that sailed south from Cuba and Mexico, trying to conquer the war. This process of conquest was more peaceful and more respectful to the natives than in OTL, and so, New Granada still has a gigantic indigenous presence.
Differing from the French conquest of Aztèque or the Spaniard colonization of central Mexico, Spain's attempt to conquer the tribes was very peaceful. However, similarly to in the rest of Spaniard America, the tries to assimilate the tribes into Spaniard society was largely unsuccessful, and the Habsburg Reforms of 1650 prevented more cruelty against the natives from happening.
Although the ethnic conflicts and racism had ended, the Spaniard population still governed, thanks to they amassing the richness of the world, possible. Although New Granada was still as oppressed and unequal as in OTL, it was much richer.
The inter-social class disputes reached a climax in 1781, when a group of inconformed middle-classed men, called Comuneros (Commoners), revolted against the Spanish Crown, mostly in the regions of Socorro and Pamplona. The revolt ended when its leader, José Antonio Galán, was arrested and executed in February 2, 1782.
This, however, didn't end problems with the Neogranadine populace. There were many smaller revolts, such as the one in Antioquia (1783), Santa Fe (1785) and Maracaibo (1787), all of them unsuccessful. The now Bourbon leaders decided to instead tighten the grip that made the population rebellious.
With this, the Bourbon made a great error. Further revolts ended, but the population grew more and more in conform with the Spaniard government.
main article: Simón Bolívar
Simón Bolívar was born in Caracas in 1783. His father died when he was a few months old and his mother when he was seven, both of them victims of tuberculosis. He was taken to live to his tutor's home, but the tutor was Mestizo and of a middle-ranked class, and such was not deemed appropriate for the Criollo and high-class Simón. He was taken to the house of a restrictive and ultra-conservative uncle of his, who Simón hated. He tried to escape twice, although not once did he succeed.
Finally, when he was twenty, he traveled towards Europe, where he stayed for a year. By the end of the year, Bolívar married a rich Spaniard. This didn't work so well, when, at his return to America, she died of yellow fever.
Bolívar then started independence campaigns in New Granada. He tried to make Venezuela independent three times, although failed, and then went for Colombia, where he was able to free Cartagena and most of its state. Over time, although failing in many assaults, he was able to push the Spaniards back and back, until, in 1819, the Bolivarian forces captured Santa Fé after the Battle of Boyacá, which expelled Spaniard presence from New Granada. Finally New Granada was free.
Independent New Granada
Bolívar, however, was not content with New Granada. He wanted a federation of Latin states, stretching from California to Patagonia. Unfortunately, the liberal and monarchist Santandereans didn't allow that. With help of the Mexican emperor, Agustín de Itúrbide, they expelled Bolivarian forces from New Granada and established a kingdom within its borders.
A following war after the semi-absolutist monarchy of Perú, led by 78-year old Tupac Amaru II and the Dictator, Simón Bolívar, ended in a crushing defeat for the Santandereans, although the war ended on status quo ante bellum. However, this wars caused New Granada and Peru to be rivals for most of their history.
New Granada as Superpower (1836-1960)
Liberal and conservative problems arose once again in 1836, when New Granada went to the brink of civil war after the mostly Liberal and pro-Monarchic Andean regions discussed with the much mores conservative and pro-Republican Llanos Orientales and Caribbean coast (with the notable exception of the Liberal enclave in Cartagena) over if New Granada would help Mexico (liberal and monarchic) or Texas (conservative and republican) in the Texan Independence War. At the end, after several close calls for conflicts and a small insurgency in the city of Barranquilla (which was quickly put down), the government decided to help the Mexican army.
In 1845, finally, the Texan Republic was forcibly recognized by Mexico in its smaller borders in order to end the war. Later, in 1849, the Mexican Empire and the Texan Republic, now with more normal relationships, each other acknowledged its new conquests: Texas got eastern Oklahoma (now the Province of Houston) from Louisiana, and Mexico got Colorado (now part of the State of New Mexico) from the Republic of Louisiana, newly freed from Spanish rule and therefore unstable. New Granada happily acknowledged both treaties.
However, although relationships with Mexico (and Azèteque and the Mayan Empire) had gotten better and better, the relationships with the Peruvian Confederation, the United States and the Empire of Brazil got worse. In 1853, a short, undeclared naval war called the War of Guayaquil almost threw the whole American continent into war (as Chile had joined the Colombian side, and now only Argentina, Oregon, Quebec and the Norse Kingdom kept neutral), before being quickly reduced to international squabble by intervention from Oregon and Argentina, who didn't want to be involved in a continent-wide war.In 1856, the conservatives and rich slave owners, supported by Brazil and Peru, revolted in the city of Tunja, and the revolt quickly spread throughout the Conservative areas in the whole of Colombia. This war, the war of the One Thousand Days, destroyed the Neogranadine economy. At the end of the war in 1859, when the stronger Liberal side defeated the conservative army at the Battle of Cumaná, slavery was abolished and the Neogranadine economy was in tatters.
The Kingdom of France, a French state established in 1305 after the fall of the French Kingdom of Soissans, used this opportunity in order to get a lot of money from the small Ithsmus of Panama. It promised the New Granadan government part of the Canal's revenue, and the control of the area, in exchange for part of the money gotten from the Canal. Colombia agreed to this, and, in 1862, the French army and colonists landed on the richest area of the Isthmus of Panama and started building the canal there.
The canal, abandoned by France and continued by a joint Spaniard-Neogranadine building project, was finally finished and opened in November 4, 1874. Immediately, New Granada began getting huge revenues from the many ships that preferred to cross to the Pacific to Panama instead of through Cape Horn in Argentina, or the dangerous journey through Azètequan Nicaragua and Neogranadine Mosquitos Coast. By the end of the year, the Canal funded 50% of the Panama economy and about 2% of the Neogranadine one.
Colombia changed its capital after a Venezuelan independence revolt in 1881. Its capital was moved from the inland and hard to access Santa Fe or Tunja to the rich, coastal Cartagena, famous for its strong defensive position, extremely rich fields, and beautiful landscapes. This made it easier for the Venezuelan government to get a representation, and made the capital get more incomes while finally causing the inland Andean territories to get what they wanted: To get the Santa Fe yoke freed and to have more autonomy.
The time between 1874 and 1965 is called the Age of Expansion in New Granada, for Colombia stopped being the agriculture-and-mineral based economic nation it was into a strong, industrialised nation. A short conflict with both Azèteque and Peru placed Colombia in full possession of Mosquito Coast, San Andrés, and the Iquitos area after both the Azèteque and Peruvian armies were taken out from Colombian territory, and, in the case of Peru, were repelled as far back as Tarapoto.