Start this magical route on Tepich and Tihosuco

TEPICH

tepichpThis native settlement was the political and religious capital of the prehispanic province Cochuah. It is located 91 kilometers from the Municipality of Felipe Carrillo Puerto, 12 kilometers of Tihosuco and 50 kilometers from the city of Valladolid, Yucatán. It was here that the Caste War began.

It is known as the Caste War to the Mayan native uprising that began in 1847 against the population of Creoles and Mestizos that was established in the Yucatan Peninsula, which for 5 decades was subtracted from the domain of the Republic, civil conflict that affected the Peninsula during the nineteenth century, facing the Mayan against the Mestizos and the Mexican government. This war was led by Jacinto Pat and Cecilio Chi due to the poor living conditions of the Mayan Indians in the Peninsula.

It began the morning of July 30, 1847 when Yucatecan authorities surprised Manuel Antonio Ay, chief of Chichimila, with a letter sent by Cecilio Chi, chief of Tepich, which set out the agreement to start an Indian uprising.
The execution of Antonio Ay, caused the overtaking on July 30, of the attack to the town by Don Cecilio Chi and his large group of Mayan, who murdered all Yucatecan people (non-Mayan, also called “dzules”) living in the city.

The Mayans were able to take most of the Peninsula area and fought tenaciously to avoid being subjected until mid-sixteenth century, when the governor Barbachano had to request military support to Mexico.War officially ended 1901 with the occupation of the Maya capital of Chan Santa Cruz by Mexican troops.
Shortly after the Hispanic conquest started, the capital was moved to Tihosuco.
Tepich was looted, destroyed and abandoned for decades until immigrants from Yucatan repopulated it, in the early twentieth century, motivated by the exploitation of gum.

Colonial Church.- The first church, dated from the seventeenth century, was a little austere chapel, run by Franciscan friars. It was a masonry building, on a rise that may be a prehispanic structure. Atrium is accessed by a wide staircase to the front. The facade is smooth, with a triangular cladding, topped by towers at each end. The roof was made of wood and palm, with the exception of the sanctuary that had vaulted ceiling, decorated by needles at the ends of masonry, had baptistery and rectory with guestrooms for the visitors. These were the first perishable buildings that were built in the village. Later on, the church was enlarged. It is located in the heart of the community, beside the Federal Highway, it has a rustic finish and its partially destroyed due to the Caste War, but it has quite a history.
Today the church is consecrated to the Holy Cross and St. Joseph Patron.
The festivities are held from March 12th to 19th, with traditional dance, bullfights, food and fireworks.

Mayan Cemetery .- On one side of the colonial church is a graveyard, completely walled, with access through a door with arch, surmounted by a belfry with space for three bells and a cross and had a small chapel.

TIHOSUCO

TihosucoThis town is located 79 km. northwest of Felipe Carrillo Puerto, the municipal seat of government. This town was part of the prehispanic province of Cochuah. The religious and political capital was in Tepich, but once the Spanish conquest started, this moved to Tihosuco.

It was conquered in the year 1544 by Francisco de Montejo, the conqueror of Yucatan, and this was one of the most difficult populations offered for submission. In this Village began the opposition to the colony causing an exodus of idolaters in 1605 to Isla Mujeres and Cozumel.

The religious Franciscan who dedicated themselves to the evangelization of the Peninsula choose Tihosuco as the center of their activities in the area, building the Temple of the Holy Baby Jesus and a monastery whose ruins are today the main symbol of the town, soon Tihosuco was a thriving population of Spanish and Mestizos.

His first Spanish chief in 1565 was Francisco Hernandez and yet, kept Mayan authorities, its batab (maya military rank) Francisco Xool. The Mayas were more frequent among the population.

In 1686 the English pirates Lorenz de Graaf and Grammont plundered Tihosuco on their way to the city of Valladolid, having landed in the Bay of Asunción, but the almost total destruction of this Village occurred during the Caste War. Here also lived Jacinto Pat, one of the main leaders of this movement of rebellion.

Former colonial church or convent of Tihosuco.- The most important building is the Tihosuco Temple devoted to the Holy Child Jesus and its adjoining convent. The church was carved in lime. It had sacristy, ornaments of silver, a golden cross with velvet sleeves embroidered in gold and silk. Some historians say that the revered saint was St. Augustine.

It had a large-scale clearing, supported by arches and logs, a wooden altar and sculptures placed in niches carved also in wood and painted in gold, baptistery, font, and choir. It probably had two towers. Inside the wall, hidden, we find a way round that has peepholes along the wall, no doubt used for surveillance of people and later for firing weapons.

 The frontispiece was bounded by recessed columns, in which spaces were probably placed religious statues. The walls of the church finished off in a series of battlements, like a turrets. Adjacent to the church built a convent that was a veritable fortress, included numerous cells, stocks for punishment, several courtyards, dining room, water storage, bakery, school theater roof, among others.

The church building was completed in the year 1839 and is now in ruins, because its facade was destroyed by an explosion in which the Mayan managed to enter to the church in the insurrection of 1847 because the white population had taken refuge in it, being now only remains of the side walls, a small part of the facade and a section of the vault. The neighboring convent was transformed into the cemetery and the only remains are the exterior walls. Inside the church you can still see the design of the period through carved stones and some paint.

The celebrated saint is the Holy Baby Jesus and the festivities are held during the week of 19th to 24th December each year.