Guanajuato Mexico about 1892

guanajuato-mexico-about-1892

GUANAJUATO, MEXICO — Guanajuato is a capital of a State or the same name, 238 miles north of the City of Mexico. Its name is said to have been derived from an Indian word meaning “The Hill of the Frog,” and was so called because a huge stone in the shape of a frog was once worshiped here. At present the divinity most worshiped at Guanajuato is the Almighty Dollar, though it must be said that Guanajuato is not unique in this particular! It is a marvelously productive mining town. One of its mines is said to have produced $800,000,000! Its annual silver product now is about $6,000,000. It is built in a deep and narrow ravine, along the sides of which the buildings cling in such odd positions that an earthquake shock would apparently send them all tumbling down in great confusion. Silver was discovered here in 1548, and since then the tawny, desolate mountains which enclose this town have proved a treasure-house of wealth. One sees, however, few indications of such riches in the town itself. The streets are narrow, roughly paved and filled with disagreeable odors. The buildings, with the exception of a few houses in the upper part of the city, are as plain as though the adjacent hills were mounds of sand, instead of silver, and the poor Indians look as usual ragged and wretched. Great floods sometimes occur here occasioning loss of life and property. Some handsome churches, the Citadel, the Mint, and the Silver Mills, reward the traveler’s visit to this place, aside from the picturesque and mediaeval features of the town itself. (from John L. Stoddard, Glimpses of the world; a portfolio of photographs of the marvelous works of God and man – 1892)

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