LEGUIA, AUGUSTO B. (1863-1932), Peruvian man of affairs, statesman and executive, was born in the department of Lambayeque in 1863. He received his early education in Chile, and served with the Peruvian forces during the War of the Pacific (1879-81). At the end of the war he entered upon a business career, became head of the Latin-American department of the New York Life Insurance Company, and later was intimately connected with other business enterprises and industries. Turn ing his attention to politics in 1903 he was appointed secretary of the treasury, and in 1908 was elected president of the republic. In May 1909, a revolution in the capital very nearly cost him his life, and foreign complications throughout his term made it a stormy one. After his retirement he was the object of political persecution and in 1913 was driven into exile. He returned to Peru in 1919 and was again elected president, but before the end of his predecessor's term, being warned that he would be pre vented from taking office, he headed a revolt and seized the Government by a coup d'etat. The following year he secured
the passage of a new Constitution embodying several of the principles of the Mexican Constitution of 1917. In 1923 and again in 1927 the Constitution was amended to permit his re elections. Under Leguia's administration Peru has experienced an era of prosperity. His Government has procured the investment of large sums of foreign capital in the country, and has made notable progress in public works and education, in stimulating industries and exploiting natural resources, in the construction of roads and railways, in the organization of a navy and naval defence (under United States guidance), and especially in re claiming large tracts of desert land by means of irrigation.
See Graham H. Stuart, The Governmental System of Peru (Wash ington, 1925). (W. B. P.)