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(MEXICAN MANUSCRIPTS.) Mendoza, Antonio de. Decree by the Viceroy of New Spain in a lawsuit against Hernán Cortés. Document Signed the first Viceroy of New Spain, and also by 4 members of the Audencia including Alonso de Maldonado and Lorenzo de Tejada. One page, 12 x 8 1/4 inches, plus signatures and docking on verso; minor wear, folds, small tear in upper left corner. Mexico, 
A carta executoria issued in the name of the king by the Audiencia of New Spain, containing a decision in a lawsuit brought by Pedro de Salcedo against the conquistador Hernán Cortés. The relationship between Cortés and Salcedo was complex. Cortés had fathered a daughter Catalina by Leonor Pizarro circa 1515. Leonor later married the conquistador Juan de Salcedo, by whom she had Pedro. Thus doña Catalina Cortes and Juan de Salcedo were half-siblings by the same mother. Salcedo had charged that his father, the late conquistador Juan de Salcedo, formed a compañía (a campaign for exploration and conquest) with Cortés near the end of his life. Cortés was paid 8,000 pesos for being one of the leaders of the compañía, but due to the death of Salcedo, the expedition never took place. Pedro argued that Cortés should return the money. The Audiencia sided with him and signed their names on the carta alongside Antonio de Mendoza, the famed first viceroy of New Spain. The decision stipulated that Pedro de Salcedo could harass Cortés to whatever extent necessary to recover the money. Given Cortés' continued prestige and power, one can imagine that Salcedo was nevertheless not too brazen or aggressive in collecting his debts. The document is undated, but mentions "November of the year passed, 1539."
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