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Cucuta History, Colombia

Previously known as the San Jose de Guasimales, Cucuta owes its existence as a city to the settlements made in the place and to the people who explored it.  There were different remarkable events in the city which lead to Colombia’s independence as a republic.  All the tradition and events are noteworthy thus Cucuta’s own history was carved.

The Europeans

Cucuta was invaded by many European conquerors.  The first person to make his own exhibition to the place was the German Ambrosio Alfinger.  It was in 1530 when the said conqueror arrived at the place in his search for El Dorado.  He then saw the place with inhabitants known as the Tamalameque.  With his troops, Alfinger fought with the said tribe to be able to rule the land. 

His fleet was followed by several other conquerors like Hernan Perez de Quesada and Alfonso Perez de Tolosa(1541) and Pedro de Ursua and Ortun Velasco (1549).  Several European expeditions were also seen like those led by Diego de Montes and Francisco Fernandez de Contreras.  One of the most famous person who played a vital role in Cucuta’s foundation as a city is Alonso Esteban Rangel.  Rangel is the great grandfather of one of the founders of the City of Cucuta.

The City’s Foundation

The 16th century marked a good term for the cognizance of Cucuta in Colombia.  Its great valleys were owned by Christopher de Araque Ponce de Leon.  His belongings stretched from the Cucuta Valley to the San Jose village.  This was because the properties were donated to him by the Governor of New Merida.  In 1782, Juana Rangel de Cuellar donated 782 hectares of land for the erection of a parish and a village for Spanish families.

Battle of Cucuta

This is a significant event which led to the independence of two nations - Colombia and Venezuela.  The battle was fought between 400 men headed by Colombian Simon Bolivar and 800 troops formed by the Spanish Ramon Correa.  There were more Spanish than Colombian soldiers killed and injured during the war which lasted for several hours on February 28, 1813.  The victory paved the way for Colombia’s independence from Spanish settlers.

Cucuta Congress

Eight years after the city’s independence, on August 30, 1821, the first Congress of Cucuta took place.  This event was made possible by Antonio Nariño, Bolivar and General Francisco Paula de Santander.  They were joined by other leaders who were responsible for the ousting of Spanish rule in the land.  The Congress primarily focused on the cooperation of Colombia and Panama with Venezuela.

Earthquake of Cucuta

Cucuta experienced an earthquake which destroyed the city on May 18, 1875.    It had destructed several settlements and villages.  Despite the vast destruction of the natural phenomenon, the city was immediately rebuilt.

Now Cucuta is embracing the contributions of industrialization.  Railroads were built to connect it with other towns and cities of Colombia.  The said infrastructure also strengthened the nation’s alliance with other countries found within its boundaries.  The city is now enjoying its independence.

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