Ferrol - Urban History
Portrait of President Cánovas, by Madrazo (1885)

After the 'Democratic Sexenio', the Restoration (1876-1923) saw the appearance in Spain of the two-party system designed by Cánovas del Castillo, which aimed to maintain the peaceful alternation of conservatives and liberals in power. Political reforms were implemented, such as freedom of association and universal suffrage for men. The Second Cuban Insurrection (1895-8) led to the annihilation of the fleet and the loss of the remnants of the colonial empire, and had a profound impact on the national conscience. Political unrest became more serious, as republicans and socialists found themselves excluded by the corruption of the electoral system. On one hand was the employers' organizations' hired gunmen, and on the other there was terrorist action by anarchists. The murder of Cánovas was the first of three assassinations of heads of the Cabinet.

Patrimonio Histórico-Artístico del Senado, Photograph by "Fotografía Oronoz"