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Rosario History, Argentina

Rosario History – Initial Settlement

The beginnings of Rosario are not certain to this date, but it is believed that it was settled at the beginning of the 17th century. Back then, the territory was disputed between some Franciscan missions and the local tribes, who finally regained supremacy until the arrival of the Spanish crown in the area. Some Jesuits also arrived there but there was no proper ruling system on the spot, so most of the decisions were made from Buenos Aires. 1724 brought with it the first serious city plans in Rosario history, with the building of a mill, a chapel and constant expansion. This however was slowed down by the fact that the harbor was closed and Darwin’s records from 1832 speak of about 2.000 inhabitants at the time.

Rosario History – The Early City

The 5th of August 1852 is another important landmark in Rosario history, as it is when it finally obtained full rights as an independent city and started functioning as such. The river opened for international trade and the population expanded rapidly with the help of more than 20.000 immigrants who brought fresh ideas from Europe and turned Rosario into a politically active city. What followed were struggles to make Rosario the capital city of the country, an idea which had many supporters, but was finally abandoned due to stronger influence from the centre. Slowly but surely, the city started turning into an outpost for the anarchist movements and in 1903 the Radical Civic Union won the elections.

Rosario History – Destabilization and Recovery

By 1926, Rosario had more than 400.000 inhabitants and almost half of them came from the war menaced Europe. The dictatorial regime took over the country in 1955 and problems started appearing for the population, both socially and economically. Violence was a common phenomenon in the city and clashes between police and protesters made significant victims throughout the years. In 1983, the country turned to democracy, which was thought to positively affect not just Rosario, but also Cordoba or Mar Del Plata, but the hyperinflation process led to a collapse in 1989 and riots and violent manifestations started occurring even more often in Rosario. What followed was massive unemployment and constant loss, but finally the city managed to stabilize and to become a more and more desirable destination for tourists around the world.

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