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#16 - MEXICO

Size: 3" x 5"
Copyrighted: 1891
Lithographer: Joseph P. Knapp

Mexico City
Illustrations: A "Pulqueria"; Mexico and Vicinity; View of the City; A Ranchman

Reverse - Text
Right section:
The City of Mexico, formerly Capital of the Aztec Empire, and of the Spanish Colony of New Spain--now of the Republic State and Federal District of Mexico--stands on the Anahuac plain, 7,524 feet above sea level. It is the largest and finest city in Spanish America, forming a square nearly three miles both ways, and laid out with perfect regularity. The native inhabitants are pure Indians or mestizoes, but Europeans and Americans monopolize the trade, and consequently wield the balance of power. The broad, well-paved and gas-lit streets present a picturesque sight, with their two and three-storied stone houses, painted in gayest colors, against a background of rugged snow-capped Sierras which, although 30 or 40 miles distant, seem quite close, owing to the bright, clear atmosphere at this elevation.
The Plaza de Armas or Main Square, covers 14 acres, and is tastefully laid out with shade trees, gardens, marble fountains, and seats. All the main thoroughfares converge to this point; here also are grouped most of the public buildings, over which towers the Cathedral, the largest and most sumptuous church in America. It is in the form of a Greek cross, 426 by 203 feet; was over a century in process of construction, at a cost of 400,000 pounds for the walls alone. In the interior, the Doric style prevails, Renaissance on the exterior, which has a fine dome and two open towers 218 feet high. At the foot of the left tower is placed the famous Calendar Stone, the most interesting relic of Aztec culture. On the east side of the Plaza is the old Vice-Regal residence, now the National Palace, with 675 feet frontage, containing most of the Government Offices, Military Quarters, Meterological Department and Observatory.
The city is supplied with good water from Chapultepec and the S.W. at the rate of 44 gallons per inhabitant per day.
Population, 329,355.