martes, 17 de junio de 2008

Historia de Santiago de los Caballeros

Santiago fue fundado como fortaleza a orillas del río Yaque del Norte, por el Almirante Cristóbal Colón en 1495. Esta fortaleza se encontraba cercana a donde actualmente se encuentra la ciudad de Santiago.

En 1502 la Corona nombra a Fray Nicolás de Ovando Gobernador de la Española, quien reside temporalmente en Santiago. En 1504, la ciudad de Santiago es trasladada, por orden de Ovando, hacia el Norte, en la localidad conocida como Jacagua. En su sede de Jacagua es repoblada por los Caballeros que aun quedaban de la agonizante Isabela (Ciudad Primada de América); la tradición asevera que, desde esa fecha comienza a llamarse Santiago de los Caballeros.

El Rey español Fernando el Católico otorga, en 1508, el escudo de armas a la villa de Santiago: escudo colorado con cinco veneras blancas, con una orla blanca y en ella siete veneras coloradas. Las veneras estaban asociadas con las playas de Galicia donde se encontraba Santiago de Compostela, era pues el símbolo del peregrino que había visitado Tierras Santas. Para 1514, según datos del primer censo en Santiago había 60 personas y tenía iglesia, casa del cabildo, y hasta un total de 40 vivienda y edificios públicos.


El 2 de diciembre de 1562 un fuerte terremoto destruye totalmente la villa de Santiago junto a otras colonias españolas entre las que se encontraba la Concepción de La Vega. Bajo las construcciones de mampostería quedaron sepultados muchos de sus habitantes. La ciudad es restablecida de nuevo a orillas del río Yaque, donde actualmente está localizada. El peligro de los sismos está presente en la historia de Santiago, que ha sido estremecida por terremotos en varias ocasiones, destruyéndola y matando parte de sus habitantes.

En 1660 Santiago fue saqueada por el pirata Fernand de la Fleur. Treinta años más tarde, en 1690, la ciudad se defiende victoriosamente contra los franceses ubicados en la porción occidental de la isla, en la batalla de "La Limonada".

Santiago fue afectado por fuertes terremotos ocurridos en los años 1775 y 1783. Tropas haitianas saquean y destruyen la ciudad de Santiago en 1805. La mayoría de sus vecinos son degollados tras rudísima y desigual batalla. A partir de 1822, Haití domina toda la isla dificultando el desarrollo de la parte oriental.

En 1842, otro fuerte terremoto afecta la ciudad de Santiago, muriendo gran parte de su población.

Santiago es el sitio de la famosa batalla efectuada el 30 de Marzo de 1844, en la cual las tropas dominicanas, en desventaja numérica y de armamentos, derrotaron al ejército del Norte de Haití comandado por el Gral. Pierrot, consolidándose así la Independencia Dominicana proclamada en la ciudad de Santo Domingo el 27 de Febrero del mismo año.

En 1857 los pueblos del Cibao se sublevan contra la dictadura de Buenaventura Báez, nombran a Santiago Capital de la República Dominicana, con un gobierno presidido por el General José Desiderio Valverde y proclaman una Constitución liberal. Pero el intento revolucionario no tuvo mayor trascendencia porque el nuevo gobierno nombró jefe de las tropas al ex-dictador Santana. El General Pedro Santana volvió a dirigir el país desde la ciudad de Santo Domingo y lo anexó en 1861a España.

El pueblo santiagués, disconforme con la Anexión, inició un movimiento tendiente a restaurar la República, que en agosto de 1861 se convirtió en un inicio de lucha contra el español que derivó en la ejecución de los héroes Eugenio Perdomo, Pedro Ignacio Espaillat, Carlos de Lora, Vidal Pichardo, Antonio Batista y el Coronel Pierret.

El 6 de septiembre de 1863, Santiago es destruida totalmente luchando contra las tropas españolas sitiadas en la Fortaleza San Luis y el 14 del mismo mes, tras ser incendiada y destruida casi en su totalidad para expulsar a los Españoles de la misma, Santiago es declarada capital del Gobierno Restaurador en las Guerras Restauradoras de la Independencia, con un gobierno provisional presidido por José Antonio Salcedo. España entregó el país a los independentistas en julio de 1865 después de tres años de guerras Restauradoras.

La Sociedad "Amantes de la Luz" y el Ateneo de Santiago, destinados a difundir la cultura santiaguesa, fueron fundados en 1874. En 1881, durante el gobierno del Padre Meriño, se creó la primera Escuela Normal del Cibao, en Santiago de los Caballeros. En 1891 salió el primer periódico diario de Santiago, El Día.

El 16 de agosto de 1897 fue inaugurado oficialmente el ferrocarril Santiago - Puerto Plata por el presidente Ulises Heureaux. Por esta época se inicia la moda de las construcciones tipo Victoriano, de estilo neoclásico, tan características del Caribe y en particular de la ciudad de Santiago, donde algunos historiadores prefieren denominar estilo Lilisiano en honor al presidente del país, Ulises Heureaux (Lilís). En 1915 fue inaugurada la Compañía de Agua y Luz de Santiago.

En 1916 el país fue ocupado por fuerzas de infantería norteamericana y se estableció en la ciudad de Santiago el Cuartel General de las tropas interventoras en el Cibao. No fue hasta 1922 cuando se efectúa la retirada gradual de las tropas de Estados Unidos y se instaura el tercer periodo republicano en 1924.

Durante el periodo de ocupación Norteamericana Santiago crece y se desarrolla; fueron construidas nuevas calles, puentes, carreteras interurbanas como la de Santo Domingo - Santiago - Montecristi y la que comunica Santiago con su puerto natural, Puerto Plata, y en esta época se dotó a la ciudad de alumbrado eléctrico. El censo de 1916 contó 14,774 habitantes de los cuales 13,167 eran dominicanos y el resto interventores americanos, y la ciudad tenía entonces 3,226 viviendas.

Entre 1924 y 1930 el Gobierno de Horacio Vásquez favoreció a Santiago con diversas obras públicas y con grandiosos acontecimientos de carácter internacional, como la Exposición Interantillana de 1927. En 1930 Rafael Leonidas Trujillo es nombrado presidente del país, iniciándose la dictadura de 30 años conocida como La Era de Trujillo y que culmina en 1961 con el asesinato del dictador. En esta época la ciudad de Santiago llega a tener cerca de 15,000 viviendas en un área de 6km², creciendo lentamente durante la Era.

Desaparecida la tiranía en 1961, comienza a manifestarse una extraordinaria migración desde los campos hacia los centros urbanos, situación que en Santiago hace romper el relativo equilibrio que existía entre los componentes del sistema urbano. Se experimenta un aumento crítico de la población y una extensión súbita del área urbana, de manera que en menos de 20 años alcanzó una extensión de 70 km². Este crecimiento no se ha logrado frenar y continúa actualmente.

Fotos: Archivo Historico de Santiago, Fuente externa y colección personal
Datos: José E. Marcano http://mipais.jmarcano.com © 2008 All rights reserved.

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que bella pagina nos gastamos hacia falta olgo asi espero que sigan recoletando datos de nuestra ciudad tan hermosa.

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