The Plaza de Santo Domingo is a classic city square in the northwest of the Centro Histórico, and a long term center for the city’s stationers and smaller print shops. The “Plaza 23 de Mayo,” though seldom referred to, is that section of the Santo Domingo Plaza directly in front of the temple, and separated from Santo Domingo Plaza, proper, by the Calle Belisario Domínguez.
The square is believed to be the site of the former home of Cuauhtémoc who had become tlatoani (i.e.; the last Aztec emperor) at about age 25, in 1520. The Spanish re-assigned the site, empty of any construction, to the Dominicans, who built the Temple of Santo Domingo on the north side of the square.
Most of the buildings in the area succumbed to sinking land and flooding problems and were rebuilt in the 18th century. This mass rebuilding led to a bit more harmony in the area and many buildings in the immediate vicinity share the New Spanish Baroque style. Besides the Temple of Santo Domingo, visitors can also see:
Alciati is better known for having sculpted the Angel of Independence, and for the statue of Benito Juarez presented as a gift to the United States. That work is presently in the Foggy Bottom neighborhood of Washington, DC, near the Department of State.
Since the 19th century, the portals on the west side of the plaza have been a center of scribes, often locally called “evangelists.” The job of writing letters began here with feathers, and jars of ink, and only later involved typewriters. The current stationers still provide printing services related to social events, academic theses, tax vouchers, titles, and professional certificates.
The imperial General, Santiago Vidaurri, is said to have been executed here, by firing squad, on July 8, 1867, for his collaboration with the government of Maximiliano of Habsburg.
República de Brasil s/n, Col. Centro.