Martos y Navarrete, Ángel de (unknown–unknown)

By: Robert Bruce Blake

Type: Biography

Published: 1952

Updated: August 2, 2020

Ángel de Martos y Navarrete was governor of Texas from 1759 to 1767. The former naval lieutenant received his royal commission as governor on August 21, 1756, but his predecessor, Jacinto de Barrios y Jáuregui, was allowed to remain in Texas for the establishment of San Agustín de Ahumada Presidio, so Martos y Navarrete acted as governor of Coahuila until February 6, 1759, when the two governors changed places. His first official act was to preside over the residencia (or judicial investigation) of Barrios. Martos's administration was marked by complicated events, including the attack of Diego Ortiz Parrilla on the northern Indians who had attacked Santa Cruz de San Sabá Mission in 1758, the cession of Louisiana to Spain by France in 1762, and a bitter dispute between the governor and Rafael Martínez Pacheco, captain of the presidio of San Agustín de Ahumada. Martos y Navarrete ordered Martínez Pacheco's arrest and was responsible for the burning of the presidio in 1764, events that caused Viceroy Carlos Francisco de Croix to summon him to Mexico City to report and to appoint Hugo Oconór as governor ad interim in his place in 1767. When the Marqués de Rubí made his inspection of Texas in the late summer of 1767, he was astonished at the reports that the governor had lived at Los Adaes as an Indian rather than as a Spaniard, that he had allowed serious deterioration of the equipment and morale of the garrison, that he had made a profit of 1,000 percent on goods sold to the garrison, and that he had purchased his supplies from the French at Natchitoches, in violation of the law he was supposed to enforce. The trial of Martos y Navarrete for his orders to burn the presidio lasted for fourteen years and resulted in the imposition of a heavy fine.

Hubert Howe Bancroft, History of the North Mexican States and Texas (2 vols., San Francisco: History Company, 1886, 1889). Carlos E. Castañeda, Our Catholic Heritage in Texas (7 vols., Austin: Von Boeckmann-Jones, 1936–1958; rpt., New York: Arno, 1976).

Time Periods:
  • Spanish Texas

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.

Robert Bruce Blake, “Martos y Navarrete, Ángel de,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed May 29, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

August 2, 2020

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