José Manuel Gallegos

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José Manuel Gallegos
José Manuel Gallegos.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New Mexico Territory's At-large district
In office
March 4, 1853 – July 23, 1856
Preceded byRichard Hanson Weightman
Succeeded byMiguel Otero
In office
March 4, 1871 – March 3, 1873
Preceded byJosé Francisco Chaves
Succeeded byStephen B. Elkins
Personal details
BornOctober 30, 1815
Abiquiú, (then Province of Santa Fe de Nuevo Mexico, Viceroyalty of New Spain; now State of New Mexico, USA)
DiedApril 21, 1875(1875-04-21) (aged 59)
Santa Fe, New Mexico Territory
Political partyDemocratic

José Manuel Gallegos (October 30, 1815 – April 21, 1875) was a delegate to the US Congress from the Territory of New Mexico.


Born in Abiquiú, in what is now Rio Arriba County, New Mexico, Gallegos attended parochial schools. He studied theology at the Jesuit run College of Durango (Colegio de Durango), Republic of Mexico, graduated in 1840, and was ordained a Roman Catholic priest. He served as member of the legislative assembly of what was then the Department of New Mexico, Republic of Mexico from 1843 to 1846. He served as member of the first territorial council of the Territory of New Mexico in 1851.

Gallegos was elected as a Democrat to the Thirty-third US Congress (March 4, 1853 – March 3, 1855). He was elected to a second term but served only briefly, March 4, 1855, to July 23, 1856, as he was succeeded by Miguel Antonio Otero (I), who had successfully contested Gallegos's election. He served as member of the territorial house of representatives 1860-1862 and served as speaker. He was an unsuccessful candidate for election in 1862 to the Thirty-eighth US Congress.

In 1862, Gallegos was made a prisoner of war by the Texas Confederate troops when they came through Santa Fe. He served as Treasurer of the New Mexico Territory in 1865 and 1866, and as Superintendent of Indian Affairs in New Mexico in 1868.

Gallegos was elected as a Democrat to the Forty-second US Congress (March 4, 1871 – March 3, 1873). At the time he did not speak English and asked to be permitted a translator on the Floor of the House of Representatives, this request was denied. He was an unsuccessful candidate for reelection in 1872 to the Forty-third US Congress. He died in Santa Fe, and was interred there in the Catholic Cemetery.

See also[edit]


  • United States Congress. "José Manuel Gallegos (id: G000022)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Richard H. Weightman
Delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives
from New Mexico

Succeeded by
Miguel A. Otero
Preceded by
J. Francisco Chaves
Delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives
from New Mexico

Succeeded by
Stephen B. Elkins

 This article incorporates public domain material from the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress website