Online Encyclopedia

MAYAGUEZ

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V17, Page 931 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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MAYAGUEZ, the third largest city of Porto Rico, a seaport, and the seat of government of the department of Mayaguez, on the west coast, at the mouth of Rio Yaguez, about 72 M. W. by S. of San Juan. Pop. of the city (1899), 15,187, including 1381 negroes and 4711 of mixed races; (1910), 16, 591; of the municipal district, 35,700 (1899), of whom 2687 were negroes and 9933 were of mixed races. Mayaguez is connected by the American railroad of Porto Rico with San Juan and Ponce, and it is served regularly by steamboats from San Juan, Ponce and New York, although its harbour is not accessible to vessels drawing more than 16 ft. of water. It is situated at the foot of Las Mesas mountains and commands picturesque views, The climate is healthy and good water is obtained from the mountain region. From the shipping district along the water-front a thoroughfare leads to the main portion of the city, about , m. distant. There are four public squares, in one of which is a statue of Columbus. Prominent among the public buildings are the City Hall (containing a public library), San Antonio Hospital, Roman Catholic churches, a Presbyterian church, the court-house and a theatre. The United States has an agricultural experiment station here, and the Insular Reform School is 1 m. south of the city. Coffee, sugar-cane and tropical fruits are grown in the surrounding country; and the business of the city consists chiefly in their export and the import of flour. Among the manufactures are sugar, tobacco and chocolate. Mayaguez was founded about the middle of the 18th century on the site of a hamlet which was first settled about 1680. It was incorporated as a town in 1836, and became a city in 1873. In 1841 it was nearly all destroyed by fire.
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