Carlos Lacerda


August 12, 2022

Carlos Frederico Werneck de Lacerda GCC (April 30, 1914 – May 21, 1977) was a Brazilian journalist and politician. He was a member of the National Democratic Union (UDN), councilor (1947), federal deputy (1955–60) and governor of the state of Guanabara (1960–65). He was founder (in 1949) and owner of the newspaper Tribuna da Imprensa, as well as creator (in 1965) of the publishing house Nova Fronteira.


Carlos Lacerda was born in Rio de Janeiro, then the Federal District, where his grandfather lived and his father had great political interests. He was named Charles Frederick as a tribute to political thinkers Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. He was the son of the politician, tribune and writer Maurício de Lacerda (1888–1959) and of Olga Caminhoá Werneck (1892–1979), being the paternal grandson of Sebastião Lacerda, Minister of the Supreme Federal Court and Minister of Transport in the government of Prudente de Morais. Through his maternal family, he was the great-grandson of the botanist Joaquim Monteiro Caminhoá, great-grandson of the Baron of Ribeirão, a direct descendant of Inácio de Sousa Vernek, whose family had important political and economic influence in the region; great-nephew of the Baron of Maçambara, of the Viscount of Cananeia, of the Baron of Avelar e Almeida, of the Baroness of Werneck, the great-nephew of the Baron of Santa Fé and the great-great-nephew of the 1st Baron of Santa Justa. His parents were cousins , descendants in distant lines of Francisco Rodrigues Alves, the first sesmeiro of the city of Vassouras. On the other hand, although he had a surname similar to that of the 2nd Barão de Pati do Alferes, his surname Lacerda comes from his great-grandfather, a poor Portuguese confectioner who settled in Vassouras. His great-grandfather, as soon as he came to Brazil, married a descendant of Francisco Rodrigues Alves (these will be the parents of his paternal grandfather, Sebastião Lacerda). His Portuguese great-grandfather was named João Augusto Pereira de Lacerda and belonged to one of the main families of the Azorean nobility, the Lacerdas do Faial, descendants of the noble families of the Pereiras, lords of Feira, and of the Lacerdas, descendants of the kings of Castile and León and in France. In 1929, he entered the Legal and Social Sciences course at the then Faculty of Law of the University of Rio de Janeiro, currently the National Faculty of Law of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ). During his academic period, he stood out as an expert speaker and actively participated in the left-wing student movement at the Centro Acadêmico Cândido de Oliveira. Due to great involvement in political activities, he dropped out of the course in 1932. He became a communist militant, following in the footsteps of his father, Maurício de Lacerda, and his uncles Paulo Lacerda and Fernando Paiva de Lacerda, former members of the Brazilian Communist Party (PCB). His first action against the government of Getúlio Vargas implemented with the 1930 revolution took place in January 1931, when he planned to encourage marches by the unemployed in Rio de Janeiro and Santos during which attacks on commerce would occur. The communist conspiracy was discovered and dismantled by the police led by João Batista Luzardo. Rio de Janeiro, attended by thousands of people. The following year he published, under the pseudonym Marcos, a booklet telling the story of Manuel Congo's quilombo. Despite its youthful communist propaganda bias, the booklet resulted from the first historical research done on a subject that had been all but forgotten. When the Communist Intent of 1935 failed, he had to hide in the family's old farm in Comércio (currently Sebastião de Lacerda in the Rio de Janeiro municipality of Vassouras) and be protected by the influential family. rom