El Marrufo, a 800 hectare estate

El Marrufo is a farm estate with 800 hectares of pasture, agricultural land and woodland in La Sauceda valley, within the municipality of Jerez. In 1936 it belonged to the Guerrero family from Jerez, who owned many other properties in Cádiz province. In total they had 32 properties and a total of 6,140 hectares of land. El Marrufo had a small chapel, an enormous mansion and several outbuildings which were used as stables and storage.The Cortijo del Marrufo is situated to the far east of La Sauceda valley. It is in the municipality of Jerez, as this passed into Castilian hands in the 13th century.

For centuries the mountains of Marrufo were worked by individuals who rented or held the concession for the land; they paid a fee to the municipality in exchange for making use of the resources produced by its oak woods, acorns and pastures.

In his book La Sauceda y el Marrufo, de la resistencia republicana a la represión franquista (La Sauceda and El Marrufo, from Republican resistance to Francoist repression), Fernando Sigler explains that in the 20th century, after communal assets in the municipalities were sold to private individuals by the liberal governments of Isabel II, a family of landowners in Jerez, who were originally from Grazalema, the Guerreros, bought El Marrufo. It had been put up for auction and José Guerrero Ruiz bid 899,000 reales for it on 2nd December 1859. On 15th March 1860, it was awarded to him. The purchase of El Marrufo was one of eight property operations in which José Guerrero was the highest bidder. The total of land he acquired was 4,039 ‘aranzadas’, for which he spent 1,755,735 reales. El Marrufo was 43.58 per cent of the total land acquired by Guerrero from the Confiscation, and represented 51.21 per cent of the capital he spent. In fact, this operation was highly beneficial for Guerrero because he paid less than the real value of the land and he knew that through renting it in previous years.
When José Guerrero Ruiz died in 1885, the Marrufo estate was mortgaged to a lender, the Marquis of Misa. The pastureland was inherited by the Guerrero Hermanos company (formed by Pedro, María Dolores, Ramón and Manuel Guerrero Castro) in that same year. The company ceased to exist in 1902 and Pedro and María Dolores kept the property until 1904 when Pedro died, leaving María Dolores Guerrero Castro as the only and universal heiress. She died in 1918, a spinster with no children, but in her will she left El Marrufo to her nephew, Manuel Guerrero Lozano.
In 1931, when the Second Republic was proclaimed, the owner of El Marrufo was Manuel Guerrero Lozano, a 58 year old married man from Jerez. The estate, which focused on forestry work, covered 787 hectares and 20 areas, and was free from encumbrances. To the north it bordered El Quijigal; to the south, the Cortes road and municipality; to the east the Pasada Blanca area; and to the west, the Montifarti estate. Its owner had inherited it on 6th June 1919. In addition to El Marrufo, he inherited a further 11 estates and already owned numerous properties, some of which he had bought, or acquired through the dissolution of companies or through division.
The Guerreros were one of the principal landowning families of Jerez. Like Manuel Guerrero Lozano, Antonio and Pedro also possessed a great deal of land. Together they owned 32 estates with a total of 6,140 hectares. After the Guerrero brothers, the main bourgeois property owners in Jerez – but to a much lesser extent – were the Domecq and Bohórquez families