Publicaciones

Bol. R. Soc. Esp. Hist. Nat. 110, 2016


El litigio de la fosforita de Logrosán y la aplicación de la legislación minera en el siglo XIX


Logrosán phosphorite litigation and enforcement of mining legislation in the 19th century

Alfonso de las Llanderas López

Bol. R. Soc. Esp. Hist. Nat. 110: 29-41, 2016

Resumen

Los litigios entre empresarios en los Tribunales de Justicia, para obtener la propiedad minera de los terrenos en los que se encontraba la fosforita de Logrosán, fue la principal causa de que no se aprovechase ésta industrialmente de modo continuo en el periodo 1845-1868. Estos litigios llegaron hasta la intervención del Presidente de Gobierno Francisco Serrano en 1868. Es la segunda intervención del Gobierno de España en materia de explotación minera de la fosforita en Extremadura, pues la primera fue en 1857, siendo Presidente del Consejo de Ministros Ramón María Narváez. En 1857 se intentó declarar la fosforita mediante un Proyecto de Ley como sustancia reservada al Estado, pero que finalmente fue rechazado. Este artículo trata de la segunda intervención del Gobierno y se basa en la publicación de la Gaceta de Madrid del 8 de febrero de 1869, del Decreto de 10 de octubre de 1868 del Presidente del Gobierno Provisional resolutorio del pleito entre Julián de Luna (1789-1848) y su hijo Mario de Luna con un grupo de empresarios, que duró veintitrés años (1845-1868). Del Decreto se extrae cómo era la aplicación de tres Leyes de Minas (1825, 1849, 1859), la Administración, intereses y nombres de los litigantes, etc. Tras este Decreto, comenzó a explotarse de modo continuo la fosforita de Logrosán.

Palabras clave: Historia, Legislación, Minería, Minas, Fosforita, España, Extremadura, Cáceres, Logrosán

Abstract

Logrosán phosphorite was discovered in 1754 and published his discovery in 1775 (Bowles (1775). In the publication of the Junta de Extremadura, named La Minería en Extremadura (1987: 15, 141), referred to “the first news about deposits of phosphates in Logrosán date back to the reign of Carlos III and is not until 1864 when they begin to request permissions for research or exploitation, while practically up to 1900 there is work, as a consequence of the differences that have emerged between the Sociedad General de Fosfatos and the owners of the land” and “between 1917 and 1921 Logrosán dikes, mainly “Costanaza”, they produce about 90.000 tons of ore, which represent 50 per 100 of national production, wealth of 60 to 80 per 100 of tricalcium phosphate”. “The permanent cessation of these works in Logrosán occurred in 1956 and the facilities were dismantled.” According to Boixereu (2004:28, 2015: 94), the Decade of the sixties of the 19th century is that of the beginning of industrial exploitation in the Costanaza dike and six years later stopped production. The work undertaken on the Costanaza dike were irregular ditches some of them very deep, large number of pits, and some shallow shafts.

The pre-industrial history of mining of Logrosán phosphates was the result of the succession of 114 years of slow evolution with three periods: 1 - Discovery (1754 to 1787), 2 - Testing laboratories for their knowledge (1788-1832) and 3 - Mining research and the early attempts of exploitation with a view to its industrial use (1833 to 1868).

This article is a study of litigation in the Courts, among entrepreneurs, to have the ownership of the land where the phosphorite of Logrosán was. It was the main reason that this not be successfully exploited industrially continuously in the period 1845-1868.These disputes end with the intervention of the President of the Governement Francisco Serrano (1810-1885). It’s the second intervention in mining organization of Logrosán for the Government of Spain, because the first intervention was in 1857 with the project of law, finally rejected, to declare phosphorite like substance that could only exploit the State. This article is based on the publication of the Gaceta de Madrid, pioneer publication of the Boletín Oficial del Estado, of 8 February 1869, which develops the Decree of 10 October 1868 of the President of the Interim Government decision-making of the lawsuit between Mr. Julián de Luna (1789-1848) and his son Mario de Luna with a group of entrepreneurs that lasted 23 years (1845-1868). The Decree removed how was the application of the three laws of mines (1825, 1849 and 1859), other Orders, interests and names of those interested, etc. After this Decree, he began to exploit the Logrosán phosphorite. This lawsuit has always been considered in the memories of the Estadística Minera de España in those years. Julián de Luna had, on January 16, 1840, writing at the offices of the municipality of Logrosán, stating that he had designed to exploit phosphate limestone dike in the lands owned by all the people of the village.

The laws of mines gave the main guidelines of administrative and business performance. The 1825 act declared free Phosphorite exploitation, without administrative concession, while from the 1859, the granting by the State was already required for exploitation. Nicanor Fernandez Bravo made requests for mining of phosphate limestone, dated February 14, 1863, in his name (the Porvenir mine) and on behalf of the other three components of the society, Pedro de Echevarria (Esperanza mine), Pedro Ebejón, (Abandonada mine) and Ignacio Maria de Arevalo (Fundadora mine) on land that Mr. Luna exploded. Finally the Decree of 1868 was in favor of Mario de Luna and declared void Nicanor Fernández Bravo. The records data of various historical publications indicate mainly that are a exploitation aimed at promoting of its study, analysis and tests until 1863-1864 (Table I), while the memories of the Estadística Minera de España, who always had considered in the mining domain of Logrosán litigation which impeded its development, and show from that year and until 1869 it was rapidly growing, reaching the 128.000 metric quintals in 1865 (Table II).

Keywords: History, Law, Mining, Mines, Phosphorites, Spain, Extremadura, Cáceres, Logrosán





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(c) Real Sociedad Española de Historia Natural. Facultades de Biología y Geología. Universidad Complutense de Madrid. 28040-Madrid - e-mail: rsehno@bio.ucm.es