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Jeremy Rich

African-born conquistador, was probably born in West Africa around 1505. Sometime before 1533, he arrived in the Americas and became the slave of Alonso Valiente, a notable figure among the Spanish settler community of the Mexican town of Puebla.

Alonso Valiente wrote to his nephew Pedro Mexía on 3 October 1541 about Juan s exploits According to this report Alonso had decided to take Juan to the notary of Veracruz to grant Juan the right to fight in Spanish expeditions to Guatemala and Peru Juan could then earn a salary like any other free soldier and thus could earn the money needed to buy his own freedom Juan Valiente would have to send all of his earnings for four years back to Alonso in order to officially become free However Juan chose not to send money back to his owner Alonso asked his nephew to collect the ...