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Port Louis History, Mauritius

Port Louis is the capital city of the infinitely beautiful emerald green island nation Mauritius that gleams like a bright jewel amidst the azure waters of the Indian Ocean. Mauritius has been a tourists’ haven for many decades and its legendary beauty has assumed mythical proportions in countries far and wide. Before visiting an island nation as beautiful and verdant as Mauritius, you might be interested to know the history behind the country and its capital city.

History has it that Port Louis owes its foundation/genesis to the French colonizers who were traveling round the CAPE OF GOOD HOPE and were searching for a revictualling halt for their ships. The town which has now developed into a bustling city with skyscrapers was established by those French travelers in or around 1735.

The name of Port Louis has been derived from the name of the contemporary French emperor of that time - King Louis XV as a mark of respect to HIS ROYAL HIGHNESS. Count Bertrand François Mahe de la Bourbonnais was the first governor of Port Louis.

The British in 1835 had erected a strong fortification in the form of LA CITADELLE or FORT ADELAIDE in Port Louis to guard it from invasion.

The British and the French colonized the island. But after slavery was abolished throughout most of the world, even the colonizers of Port Louis were forced to do away with it in 1835.

Then they brought in Chinese and Indian craftsmen and workers to till the land, produce rum. Port Louis consists of a truly multicultural population which largely comprises the descendants of Indian laborers and artisans and masons hired and brought long back in the 19th century.

 It is because of this large scale immigration that the population in Port Louis is of mixed origins - ¾ of Indian roots belonging both to the Hindu and Islamic faith and the rest with Eurasian and Chinese roots. Many Africans had also migrated to Port Louis and settled there in the past and make up a minority group in Port Louis population.

Other historical records say that the Dutch and French tradesmen used Port Louis in the 17th and early 18th centuries to conduct trade and commerce. Port Louis became the main harbor and administrative headquarter of Mauritius in 1735 thanks to Labourdonnais.

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