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La Plata

LA PLATA, a city of Argentina and capital of the province of Buenos Aires, 5 m. inland from the port of Ensenada, or La Plata, and about 31 m. S.E. of the city of Buenos Aires, with which it is connected by rail. Pop. (1895) 45,609; (1907, estimate) 84,000. La Plata was founded in 1882, two years after Buenos Aires had been constituted a federal district and made the national capital. This necessitated the selection of another provincial capital, which resulted in the choice of an open plain near the former port of Ensenada de Barragan, on which a city was laid out after the plan of Washington. The streets are so wide that they seem out of proportion to the low brick buildings. The principal public buildings, constructed of brick and stucco, are the government-house, assembly building, treasury, municipal hall, cathedral, courts of justice, police headquarters, provincial museum and railway station. The museum, originally presented by Dr Moreno, has become one of the most important in South America, its palaeontological and anthropological collections being unique. There are also a university, national college, public library, astronomical observatory, several churches, two hospitals and two theatres. A noteworthy public park is formed by a large plantation of eucalyptus trees, which have grown to a great height and present an imposing appearance on the level, treeless plain. Electricity is in general use for public and private lighting, and tramways are laid down in the principal streets and extend eastward to the port. The harbour of the port of La Plata consists of a large artificial basin, 1450 yds. long by 150 yds. wide, with approaches, in addition to the old port of Ensenada, which are capable of receiving the largest vessels that can navigate the La Plata estuary. Up to the opening of the new port works of Buenos Aires a large part of the ocean-going traffic of Buenos Aires passed through the port of La Plata. It has good railway connexions with the interior, and exports cattle and agricultural produce.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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