The Spaniards founded Buenos Aires in the 16th century. The city was founded as a trading port, a city of the port, where its residents are called porters. By the middle of the 18th century, Buenos Aires was a flourishing, if modest, commercial entrepôt of nearly 20,000 inhabitants. Houses were built along the narrow earthen streets that stretched north from the Riachuelo. Initially, the harbour was silted up, so larger boats that called at the port had to anchor offshore. As the capital of an independent Argentina, Buenos Aires became immensely prosperous and famous for its rich cultural life and architecture during the late 19th century. During the second half of the 20th century, however, the city suffered from a national political and economic turmoil.
Political struggles between the porteños and the interior became more intense after 1850 because the stakes increased. Industrialization and capitalism’s transformation, combined with significant technological advancements, dramatically changed the European market, making the exploitation of Argentina’s fertile plains economically viable.
Here are some stunning historical photos of Buenos Aires, Argentina, in the 1870s.