Thursday, June 25, 2020

History of San Juan Del Sur, Nicaragua | IN 5 MINUTES | Video

San Juan del Sur was discovered in 1522 by Spanish navigator Andrew Child, a journey in search of a land passage way between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.

San Juan del Sur was an artisan village, when the Spanish came here to admire the craft of clay, ceramic, and ceremonies of the first settlers.

In 1821, Nicaragua gained Independence from Spain.

Then, in 1827, San Juan Del Sur was declared a fishing port, with the name of Puerto de la Independencia and cabotage services, until 1830. On, September 18, 1840, the name was changed to San Juan de la Concorde.

The town's name changed to Pineda City in 1851, in recognition of the Supreme Director at the time. But this change did not catch on and was soon changed to San Juan Del Sur. Named for being on the southern Pacific Coast of Nicaragua and to differentiate it from San Juan del Norte.

Now lets back track a few years to the start of the gold rush in California in 1849, Americans began moving large groups of people from the east coast of the US to the West Coast to reach California in search of gold, known as the California Gold Rush.

Cornelius Vanderbilt, an American business magnate organized the "American Atlantic and Pacific Ship Canal Company," which won a canal concession by the Government of Nicaragua, and began surveying for the construction of a transoceanic canal along the San Juan River.

In 1850, Nicaragua signed the Treaty of Independence with Spain but needed to commit in ensuring a future transit canal.

In the same year, Vanderbilt created the "Accessory Transit Company," which with a span of 36 days would bring passengers between New York and San Francisco.

In 1851, Vanderbilt left New York aboard the "Prometheus" which was the first steamboat to sail the San Juan River, officially opening the Transit Route, arriving in San Juan del Norte. Passengers then embarked on smaller boats that then crossed the Lake of Nicaragua, arriving at the port of La Virgen, in Rivas.

Then from Rivas, they traveled buy land and mule to San Juan Del Sur. They then boarded the ship called the “Pacific”, which brought them up to San Francisco, California, to search for gold.

During the years that this route was in activity, 81,448 people passed through San Juan Del Sur. One of the most famous travelers who passed through San Juan del Sur was the American writer Mark Twain.

In 1866 - The man we know as Mark Twain spent three days crossing Nicaragua, en route from San Francisco to New York, a trip recounted in the book “Travels With Mr. Brown.”, in which he mentions a land of beauty, his journey crossing on mule, being sold items from locals on the way, and various people getting sick on the boat in the San Juan River.

Now in the 20th century, The United States occupied Nicaragua from 1912 – 1933, which was known as part of the Banana Wars. The purpose was for the Americans to stop any other nation, other than the Unites States, to build the Nicaraguan Canal through the country.

In 1920, The Pacific Railway of Nicaragua, extended its railroad to San Juan Del Sur from San Jorge in Rivas, and was built between 1929 and 1932. It came through the Chocolata road from San Jorge, and stopped in front of Hotel La Estacion.

From the 1940’s until the late 1990’s, San Juan del Sur acted as one of Nicaragua’s largest shipping ports, where wood, cattle, and other agricultural products were exported, and goods ranging from automobiles to farm equipment were imported. The fishing still went on and one was of the main fishing ports in Nicaragua.

Since the late 1990’s, tourism and foreign investment in real estate have become the largest industries in San Juan del Sur. Tax revenues from tourism and real estate developments have enabled the mayor of San Juan del Sur to make improvements to public areas, including the park, sports center, and beach front. In October of 2002, the port of San Juan del Sur celebrated its 150th anniversary as a city.

Fast forward to today, San Juan Del Sur is the most popular tourist city in Nicaragua, for locals and tourists alike. Filled with restaurants and hotels, many people flock to the beaches of San Juan Del Sur.