Gaspar Yanga, originally from Gabon, was sold into slavery in Mexico. In 1570, he led the escape of slaves into the mountains of Veracruz. He and his companions lived there for nearly 40 years, supplying themselves by raids on Spanish colonists. The Spanish colonial powers went into battle but never achieved a final victory. In 1618, Yanga achieved an agreement with the colonial government for self-rule of the settlement.