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

Guatemala - National Theatre; New Cemetery Interior
Illustrations: National Theatre; New Cemetery Interior; A Squaw; A Native Mayor

Reverse - Text
Right section:
In early times, when the State was under Spanish control, Guatemala included the whole of Central America and a part of Mexico; but the name is now restricted to the portion of that area which constitutes an independent republic.
The city of Guatemala is on a fertile plateau, (over 5,000 feet above the sea,) which is crossed by the valley of the Rio de las Vacas--Cow River--so-called from the first specimen of the bovine race introduced there by the Spaniards. On nearly every side it is surrounded by baraccas or ravines. Like most Spanish-American towns it is laid out in wide and regular streets and has extensive suburbs. Owing to the prevalence of earthquakes, the houses are of one story in height, but they are solidly and comfortably built, many of them having gardens and courts. Plaza Major, the chief public square, contains the Cathedral, built in 1730--the Arch-episcopal Palace, government buildings, mint, and other public edifices. Plaza de la Concordia is the favorite resort of the people. The theatre--one of the best in Central America--erected in 1858, is in the middle of another square. There are many richly ornamented churches. The most important, besides the cathedral, are those of San Francisco, La Recoleccion, La Merces, and Santo Domingo, the oldest church in the town. Educational and benevolent institutions abound. Although destitute of either railway or river communication with either coast, it carries on a busy trade. In the northwest of the State, cocoa is most cultivated, and the nibs are used as small change throughout the country.
The general prosperity of the city of Guatemala has won for it the name of being the Paris of Central America. The modern city is properly called Guatemala le Nueva; Old Guatemala, often called merely Antigua, was destroyed by the Volcan de Agua in 1774. It had been a very rich and beautiful city, and its ruins are interesting. An older Guatemala was carried away 17 years after its foundation, by the great inundation, to which Volcan de Agua owes its name.
Population, 65,796.