Happy Birthday to Bernardo O’Higgins Riquelme

August 20, 1778 is the birthday of Chilean independence leader, Bernardo O’Higgins Riquelme.  O’Higgins fought with José de San Martín to free Chile from Spanish rule.   O’Higgins studied in London as a young man, where he met Venezuelan freedom fighter, Francisco de Miranda.  As were many of the US Founding Fathers, O’Higgins was a Mason.  After achieving independence, O’Higgins ruled as Supreme Director of the new Republic.  But his liberal, democratic principles of abolishing the nobility and questioning the authority of the Church were opposed by conservatives, and he was deposed in 1823.