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The territorial government of Formosa is bounded on the north and east by Paraguay, on the south by the territorial government of El Chaco, and on the west by the Province of Salta. Its area is 30,000 square miles and its population about 30,000.
Señor Francisco Latzina, chief of the Argentine National Bureau of Statistics and author of one of the latest and best geographies of the Argentine Republic, wrote as follows regarding Formosa, in 1886:
The territory is only well known on the sides of the rivers Paraguay, Pilcomayo, and Bermejo. A great plain, slightly inclined from the northwest to the southeast, covered with forests, is all that is positively known regarding the physical aspect of the territory. The summer, which lasts during the seven months that intervene between October and June, is the rainy season. The winter, that lasts during the other five months, is generally dry. The rains usually commence in October and end in May. The dew is very abundant during the succeeding months of the year. The mean temperature is approximately 23° 5' Celsius.
The village of Formosa, on the banks of the stream of the same name, on the right margin of the Paraguay River, is the capital of the territory, with a population of 1,000.
In Formosa there is one school and a collectorship of national
The national colony that surrounds the village has an area of 74, 130 acres, divided in lots of 247 acres. The population of the colony is 800.
The colony has 225 kilometers of national telegraph lines; 95 kilometers from Bermejo to Formosa, 60 from Formosa to Riacho Inglés, and 70 from Riacho Inglés to Pilcomayo. Recently, Congress has authorized the construction of a railroad from Reconquista (Santa Fé) to Formosa.
The territorial government of El Chaco is bounded on the north by the territory of Formosa, on the east by Paraguay and Corrientes, on the west by Salta and Santiago del Estero, and on the south by Santa Fé. Its area is 62,000 square miles and its population about 30,000.
The physical aspect of this territory [says Latzina] is similar to that of Formosa. The side of the Paraná River is inhabited by civilized people, who
cultivate the soil or exploit the forest by means of the so called abrojes, while the Indians roam in the interior.
The capital of the territory is Resistencia, on the banks of the Paraná, opposite the city of Corrientes, with a population of 3,000. The village is surrounded by a colony whose area is 111,200 acres, divided in lots of 247 acres. Resistencia has one school, and Puerto Bermejo, near the reunion of the Bermejo with the Paraguay River, has another. Puerto Bermejo has about 600 inhabi
Guaycurú is another village of 500 inhabitants. In 1884, a military expedition, under the direction of the Secretary of War at that time, Gen. Benjamin Victorica, succeeded in advancing the military frontiers of the territory to the Bermejo River. Alongside of this waterway, there is a series of fortresses, which are in telegraphic communication with each other. In 1886, there were sold in this territory 333,585 acres of land at a total price of $104,000, which gave for each the average price of 31 cents. Since then, much more land has been sold to settlers by the national government.
In 1887, authority was granted to build a railroad from Resistencia to Fortagal, on the boundary of the province of Salta and Bolivia, a railroad which would cross El Chaco from east to west.
On the west of the Province of Buenos Aires, and bounded on the north by Cordoba, San Luis, and Mendoza, and on the south by the territory of Rio Negro, is the territory of La Pampa, with an area of 191,342 square miles and a population of 50,000. Señor Pico, who travelled through the territory, wrote:
A greater part of this territory is not, as is commonly supposed, a plain (pampa) nor a desert. It is not a vast and uniform plain, as is believed, because the topographical accidents, the undulations of ground, the médanos, the hills, and the mountains vary the view at every moment, narrowing and breaking the circle of the horizon. Neither can the name of desert be given to an extensive region covered with forests of fruit trees and woods, a land, too, in which grow, and in some places in great abundance, the best pastures, and a land endowed with many lakes and streams.
In the middle of the forests, there are wide spaces, bare of trees, that the natives call pampas, plains. Generally, a lake is to be found in these spaces, surrounded by médanos, movable sand hills that change their location according to the direction from which the wind blows.
After the military expedition of Gen. Roca, in 1879, that cleared the territory of all wild Indians, subjugating those that until then had resisted the authority of the National Government, the Territory of La Pampa made great progress, many important estancias, where great quantities of cattle and sheep are raised, having been established there. In this connection, it is of interest to relate that in 1886, and since then, much more land has been disposed of. There were sold by the National Government 1,788,278 acres, at a total value of $1,603,375, which gave for each acre the average price of go cents.
The capital of the territory is the villlage of General Acha, with a population, in 1886, of 2,000. It has two public schools.
A concession has been granted to build a railroad from Buenos Aires to Chile, passing by General Acha, which will also be in railroad communication with the port of Bahia Blanca.
The territorial government of Neuquen is bounded on the north by Mendoza, on the east and south by the Territory of Rio Negro, and on the west by the Andes, which separate it from Chile. Its area is 42,1
square miles and its population about 30,000. East of the rivers Neuquen and Collou-Curá, the country is a plain, while on the west, there are quite a number of sierras, ramifications of the Andes. In the extreme southwest of the territory, at the foot of the Andes, lies the beautiful lake of Nahuel-Huapi, known since the last century. The area of this lake is 309 square miles. A great many streams run into the lake, giving it communication with other smaller lakes that surround it. Thirty different islands, covered with the most luxuriant vegetation, are found in the lake, and many species of fish abound. Not far from shore, the depth of the lake is about 1,000 feet. The land adjoining the banks of the lake is very fertile and is watered by many streams.
To the north of Nahuel-Huapi, is to be found Lake Verde. The temperature of its water varies between 35° and 40°, Celsius, and is composed of alkaline carbonates and sulphates, which give very good results in the treatment of diseases of the stomach. About 100 metres from Lake Verde, there is a fountain of ferruginous water, the temperature of which varies between 60° and 95°, Celsius. Besides, there are the mineral waters of Picumleo, Domingo and Chapua. The bathing season commences in December and ends in March.
Since Gen. Villejas, in 1884, reached Nahuel-Huapi, subjugating all the wild Indians of this territory, many people have settled in it, especially Chileans, who cross the Andes for this purpose. The capital of the territory is the village of Chosmalal.
In 1886, there were 114 miles of national telegraph lines, and the other lines necessary to put all the centers of population in communication with each other were being built. In 1891, a line of 120 miles existed from Roca to Paso de los Indios, but for want of operators, it was not in use. The line between Bahia Blanca, Patagones, and Roca is used, but is often interrupted.
The territory of Rio Negro is bounded on the north by Buenos Aires, La Pampa, and Neuquen, on the east by the Atlantic, on the south by the territorial government of Chubut, and on the west by the Andes, which separate it from Chile. Its area is 130,000 square miles.
To the south of the Rio Negro [says Latzina] a few hills are found, and at a short distance from the Atlantic, stands the Sierra of San Antonio, the peaks
of which do not exceed an elevation of 1,640 feet. There are only real sierras in the extreme southwest of the territory.
The most important rivers are the Colorado and Negro, the last being navigable in all its course, having been explored by Villarino in 1772 and by Delcalzi in 1783, in sailing vessels to a point higher up than Choele-Choel, an island formed by the river in a spot above half the distance of its course. Now, it is navigated by steamers, that can also navigate the Limay River as far as the reunion of the Collon-Curá, which is navigable in boats to lake Nahuel Huapi, as has been demonstrated by O'Connor, of the Argentine navy. The River Neuquen is also navigable for ships of small draft as far as Chosenalal.
The very extensive bay of San Matias, formed by the Atlantic Ocean, forms part of this territory. In it, is found the port of San Antonio, from which are shipped the products of the territory.
In Choele-Choel, General Roca, General Conesa, and San Javier, all of which are places situated on the banks of the Rio Negro, are public schools. In Linares, General Conesa, General Roca, Bajada del Furco, Juntas del Limay, and Chelforó, national colonies have been established. These colonies have each an area of
24,710 acres, and are divided into lots of 247 acres.
The capital of the territory is the village of Viedma, with 2,000 inhabitants and two public schools. It is situated on the right bank of the Rio Negro, opposite the town of Carmen of Patagones, in the Province of Buenos Aires.
There were, in 1886, 326 miles of national telegraph lines that connected the different centers of population of the territory.
In this, as, indeed, in all the political divisions of what is better known as Patagonia, there are no wild Indians.
To the south of the territory of Rio Negro, lies the territory of Chubut, bounded on the east by the Atlantic, on the south by the territory of Santa Cruz, and on the west by the Andes, which separate it from Chile. Its area is 99,000 square miles. The principal waterway of this territory is the Chubut River, which crosses the