The Benson Latin American Collection

Guillermo Dupaix:

An Inventory of His Papers at the Benson Latin American Collection

Descriptive Summary

Creator Dupaix, Guillermo.
Title Guillermo Dupaix Papers
Dates: 1804-1820
Abstract Personal archives of Guillermo Dupaix, military captain and pioneer archaeologist, including correspondence, literary productions, and official documents concerning his archaeological expeditions in Mexico.
OCLC Record No. 29743576
Extent 5 inches
Language Spanish or Castilian.
Repository Benson Latin American Collection, General Libraries, The University of Texas at Austin

Biographical Note

Archaeological explorer, military captain, and writer. Born 1748 or 1750 in Austria-Hungary; died 1817 in Mexico City. Joined the military at the age of fourteen. Became capitan of the Regiment of Dragones de Almansa in 1790 and was sent to Mexico, where he arrived in February 1791. Retired from the military circa 1800. Between 1805 and 1809, Dupaix explored and researched the indigenous ruins of Mexico under the sponsorship of King Carlos IV. Dupaix was accompanied by an escort of cavalry and by José Luciano Castañeda, artist for the National Museum of Mexico. Dupaix's descriptions and Castañeda's drawings of the ruins received high acclaim, especially in France and England. The publication of their works is credited with having stimulated the strong interest of Europeans in visiting and studying these ruins. Dupaix is considered to be a pioneer in the science of archaeology. In 1808 Dupaix was charged with disloyalty to the King of Spain, but was absolved and praised for his work.

Scope and Contents

Among Dupaix's personal archives and the individually numbered items are correspondence, passports and other official documents, literary productions, and financial documents concerning the three expeditions lead by Dupaix (filed as Guillermo Dupaix Papers, G308 Ms., G309 Ms., G314 Ms., G315 Ms., G316 Ms., G319 Ms., G321 Ms., G322 Ms., G339 Ms.), solicitation of salaries (G354 Ms.), charges of treason brought against Dupaix (G323 Ms.), settlement by executor Fausto de Elhuyar of Dupaix's estate including Dupaix's will (G369 Ms.), mandates after Dupaix's death for the collection of the manuscripts, drawings, and artifacts emanating from the expeditions (G373 Ms.) and the manuscript “Dedicación al Congreso Gral. de la Nación Mexicana” by H.Baredere, editor of some of Dupaix's work (G434 Ms). The collection also contains a log which traces the commissioning of Dupaix for the explorations (G245 Ms.). Miscellaneous notes and manuscripts in Dupaix's personal archives include Algunos avisos practicos para mejorar mi comisión by Dupaix. A biographical sketch entitled, “Yndicaciones relativas al Sor. Guillermo Dupaix” appears to be the answer to an attached letter of 1851 from the Belgian consul representing Dupaix's descendants. Much of the correspondence is with Viceroy José de Iturrigaray y Aróstegui.

The papers are in Spanish.



Organized into two subgroups, one consisting of personal archives and the other of individual manuscripts.


Personal archives arranged by format; manuscripts arranged by topic, each being assigned a separate number.

Index Terms

Subjects (Persons)
Dupaix, Guillermo--Archives.
Castañeda, José Luciano--Archives.
Subjects (Organizations)
Real Expedición Antiquaria de Nueva España (1805-1809)
Archaeological expeditions--Mexico.
Indians of Mexico--Antiquities.
Mexico--Description and travel.
Other Authors
Delhuyar, Fausto, 1755-1833.
Iturrigaray y Arostegui, Jose de, 1742-1815.

Related Material

García, Genaro, 1867-1920.Genaro García Collection, 15-- - 1920?, Benson Latin American Collection, General Libraries, University of Texas at Austin.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Guillermo Dupaix Papers, 1804-1820, Benson Latin American Collection, General Libraries, University of Texas at Austin

Acquisitions Information

The Guillermo Dupaix Papers form part of the Genaro García Collection, which was purchased by the University of Texas in 1921 from the heirs of Genaro García.

Processing Information

The papers were arranged into Archives and Manuscripts subgroups by earlier library staff. Series were created by the staff of the Mexican Archives Project, which completed processing of the papers in December 1993.

Alternate Form Available

The papers are also available on microfilm.

Other Finding Aids

The following guide is available in the Benson Latin American Collection Rare Books Reference: Castañeda, Carlos Eduardo, 1896-1958.Guide to the Latin American Manuscripts in the University of Texas Library.
Cambridge, Mass. :
Harvard University Press,

Subgroups and Series


I. Archives

1. Series, Correspondence.
2. Series, Literary productions. Notes.
3. Series, Financial documents. Notes, receipts, and bills.
4. Series, Passports and other official documents. Passports, orders to assist Dupaix, appointments.


II. Manuscripts

1. G245: Comisión del Capitán retirado Dn. Guillermo Dupaix para investigar antigüedades de esta América. Correspondence, literary productions (logs, reports, manuscript of description of Mitlan), and passports, orders, and salary recommendations.
2. G308: Oficios primeros de esta Rl. Comisión en el año de Con la Rl. Cedula expediente, carta del Sor. Arzobispo. Correspondence, notes, and clerical orders to assist Dupaix. 1804 y 1805.
3. G309: Escritos del Escribiente Franco Peredo, 1a Expn. principio de la 2a. y otros anexos a la misma. Correspondence, receipts, and a personnel report.
4. G314: Abonos de sueldos al Capitán D. Guillermo Dupaix y sus dependientes como director de la investigación de monumentos antiguos. Correspondence, orders and appointments, and reports.
5. G315: Cartas y papeles, indiferentes a esta 2a Rl. Expn. Correspondence, notes, and receipts.
6. G316: Papeles de Oficio. 2a. expn. Correspondence.
7. G319: Cartas. 3a. expn. Correspondence and notes.
8. G321: Variedad de papeles, desde Puebla hasta Ciudad Real, 3a. expn. Papeles de Provisor. Correspondence, reports, notes, and receipts.
9. G322: Papeles relativos a sueldos de la tercer expedición y correspondencia suelta. Correspondence and a record of salaries.
10. G323: Papeles del presidte. de la intendencia de Ciudad Rl. y otros pertenecientes a la dicha ciudad. 3a. expn. Correspondence, notes, passports, orders, and receipts.
11. G339: Oficios pertenecientes a la Rl. Expedición Antiquaria de Nueva España. Correspondence, notes, and receipts.
12. G354: Incidencia de Espte. indiferente N. 288 f. 6 vta. De la expedición de historia natural.... Correspondence, orders, and official documents.
13. G369: El Sr. D. Fausto Elhuyar, albacea del Capitán Dn. Guillermo Dupaix sobre estado en que quedó al tiempo de su fallecimiento la expedición.... Correspondence, wills and attached official documents, and inventories.
14. G373: Circular mandando se recojan y envien a esta capital varios originales de antigüedades americanas que reconocio en su expediciones el difunto Director Dn. Guillermo Dupaix. Circulars, correspondence, notes by Fausto Elhuyar, and orders.
15. G434: Dedicación al congreso gral. de la nación mexicana por H. Baradere. Manuscript of the dedication.