The Hacienda of Our Lady of Sorrows, now Casa Peiro Cultural Center of the Sinaloa Institute of Culture, in Pericos, Mocorito, Sinaloa, was founded in the second half of the 18th century by Don Francisco Peyró Grammon, a Spanish immigrant; a visionary man who chose the site for its establishment in the middle of a very fertile valley surrounded by streams, which today we know as the Evora region in the central part of the state of Sinaloa and a short distance from the ocean on the coast of the Golf of California; since then, it is a strategic point for the passenger and cargo traffic in the region.
Don Francisco inherited a good amount of money to Doña Josefa Perez, his first wife, who upon her death, in the year 1795, ordered in her will for a chapel to be built in the vicinity so her remains could rest there.
Don Francisco inherited a good amount of money to Doña Josefa Perez, his first wife, who upon her death, in the year 1795, ordered in her will for a chapel to be built in the vicinity so her remains could rest there. The Chapel of Our Lady of Sorrows, located to the side of the main building, was completed in 1802, there, under the altar, is the crypt of Doña Josefa; currently it is the church of the village of Pericos, Mocorito. The Hacienda’s principal line of business were agriculture and livestock; in the late 19th century, an industry was created for the production of Aguardiente Mezcal, which carried the brand “El Periqueño”, a product that was known in Europe and the United States for its high quality. A fiber processed from the grown leaves in the pineapple of agaves, from which the mezcal was extracted, was also produced.
Another of its main activities was the exploration and commercialization, at national and international level, of wood from a tree known as “palo brazil” (caesalpina echinata), abundant on the region, from which the red dye used on the tannery industry is obtained. The Estero del Tule (or Tule’s Rivermouth), followed by the port of Altata –costal trade- were the boarding points for the transportation of wood by sea to the national and international markets. The Los Cuates mine, in the proximity of the Badiraguato mountain range, producer of gold and silver, was also part of the thriving activities that took place in the Hacienda.
From the last third of the 19th Century and from the first decades of the last century, the state, little by little, has gradually transformed into an agricultural and industrial emporium, first, under the administration of the brothers Inés León and Estanislao Peiro Castro, descendants (grandchildren) of the founder Don Francisco Peyró; entrepreneurial men
that were very well connected in political and business media, throughout the prolonged term of the governor Francisco Cañedo; and then under Don José Inés Peiro Orrantia, Don Francisco’s great-grandchild, who gave a new organizational turn to the business creating the company “Peiro Hermanos”.
Don José Inés was the protagonist of the great industrial boom of the state from the production henequen-based fibers whose export market increased before and after of World War I, becoming a flourishing henequen fiber producer and exporter. The henequen strains were brought by Peiro from Yucatan, thanks to his influence with the Porfirista elite, something almost impossible to achieve at that time. It was planted in large areas and a modern henequen fiber processing plant was installed.
Industrial modernization brought to Pericos electricity, the railroad, the automobile, the telephone, the cinema, the town got to know ice, the first Bank of the Northwest was founded here.
Industrial modernization brought to Pericos electricity, the railroad, the automobile, the telephone, the cinema, the town got to know ice, the first Bank of the Northwest was founded here; in short, all kind of satisfiers and services for the improvement and well- being of this thriving population, one of the most important development centers, at that time, in Mexico.
Given the wealth that was produced by this emporium, their owners knew how to circumvent the revolutionary movement by adapting to new circumstances; what soon attracted attention, once the armed movement ended, of presidents of the Republic that took it as a model of regional development. General Alvaro Obregon tried to associate with the Peiro family to produce fibers and take the henequen cultivation to Sonora. On more than one occasion president Obregon stayed in the Mansion of Pericos, as well as many other important political and business figures.
Don Rafael Canale Peiro, writer and a family member, tells that “…the state of Pericos wasn’t like those of the south, that is to say, with great extensions of land surrounded by a fence inside, within which were the employer’s house and a lot of the houses of the masons… No, Pericos was a model state, there was no fence, the owner’s house was in the center of the village and the workers’ houses were scattered all over the field that occupied the state… which ended as everything ends and today only the good memories of the state remain; there still stand the paternal house, the church, as well as a factory
chimney acting as a mute sentinel that reminds us that there existed a henequen industrial emporium.”
Nowadays, the old state where the Hacienda was born, is a symbol for the Periqueños; this is how one of the most prominent descendants, Don José Inés Perio Urrolagoitia, expresses about it: “because it means -he says- that part of its historic roots and traditions that were developed for a bit over two centuries. It is an icon of identity for the impact that the Peiro family had in the growth of the region.
From the old Hacienda of Our Lady of Sorrows, then Hacienda of Pericos, only remains the lordly building of austere architectural style and the chapel that functions as the parish of the town.
At the beginnings of the new millennium (21st century) the old mansion, due to its characteristics of a patrimonial building worthy of being rescued, was unfortunately abandoned, semi destroyed and about to be demolished. The College of Bachelors (COBAES) which eventually used it for its art festivals –pastoral scenery- proposed its rescue, first to the Peiro family and then to the State Government, which, together with the Mocorito City Council, resolved to initiate a rescue and rehabilitation project, preserving its architectural style and characteristics, process that lasted almost six years until it was put into use, establishing the Cultural Center “Casa Peiro” in charge of the then DIFOCUR, now the Sinaloa Institute of Culture.
In 2006, symbolically, the State Government delivered to the “periqueños” a magnificent patrimonial building that represents its history as a bearer of tangible and intangible signs that today confer cultural identity to the people of Pericos; with the entrustment that they preserve it with pride and to be used for the benefit of the children and youth bringing them closer to culture and the different expressions of the fine arts.
Texto: Lic. Jaime Félix Pico
Cronista y Promotor Cultural
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Universidad Autónoma de Sinaloa
Traducción al idioma inglés realizada por la Universidad Autónoma de Sinaloa a través del Centro de Estudio de Idiomas Culiacán. English language translation made by Universidad Autónoma de Sinaloa through the collaboration of Centro de Estudio de Idiomas Culiacán