General Pedro Santana
Pedro Santana (June 29, 1801 – June 16, 1864), who also held the Spanish noble name Marquess de las Carreras, was president of The Dominican Republic. His presidency had 3 terms lasting from 1844 to 1848, from 1853 to 1856, and again from 1858 to 1861. He also held the post of Governor and Captain General of the territory until 1862. General Santana was a key figure in driving the Haitians out of the country after their 22 years occupation of the Dominican Republic (Haitian occupation February 9, 1822 to 27 February 27, 1844).
Pedro Santana y Familias was a strong military leader and dictator during his reign. He wanted Spain to annex República Dominicana, which the Trinitarians did not like. He fought, arrested and killed anyone that stood in his way. Those who fought alongside him to give the country independence from Haiti now were his enemies.
Santana was the person who had exiled Juan Pablo Duarte. He also exiled and arrested the members of La Trinitaria. He had María Trinidad Sánchez (the sister of Francisco del Rosario Sánchez), the co-creator of the Dominican flag along with Concepción Bona, captured. Santana had Maria tortured relentlessly trying to get information about the conspirators and La Trinitaria who were against him. She gave up no information and she was put to death one year after the proclamation of Independence (February 27, 1845). She was the first female martyr of the Dominican Republic.
Dead Under Mysterious Circumstances
General Pedro Santana died in Santo Domingo on July 16, 1864 while the Guerra de la Restauración / Restoration War was happening. He was called to the capital to face charges. The day after his arrival he was found dead under mysterious circumstances.
Pedro Santana y Familias, El Primero Marqués De Las Carreras, was buried in the Fortaleza Ozama next to the Torre del Homenaje. In 1978 the remains of General Pedro Santana were moved to the Panteón Nacional. The Congress of the Dominican Republic awarded him the title of “Libertador de la Nación” / “Liberator of the Nation” on July 18, 1849 for his victory in the Batalla de las Carreras.
Casa De Pedro Santana
The home of General Pedro Santana is located on Calle Hostos on the corer of Luperon is the Colonial Zone. This is the seventeenth-century building where the General died mysteriously.
The 450 square meter building is made from stone and brick masonry. Its attractive architectural style includes arcaded galleries with double arches and stone columns and a beautiful interior patio. It was completely restored in 1990 by the Oficina del Patrimonio Cultural.
The building is the home of the Casa de Italia. Here one can take a course in the Italian language and also see many different art exhibitions and other cultural events.