San Germán, Puerto Rico facts for kids

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San Germán, Puerto Rico
Municipality
Porta Coeli Church, the most recognized landmark of San Germán.
Porta Coeli Church, the most recognized landmark of San Germán.
Flag of San Germán, Puerto Rico
Flag
Coat of arms of San Germán, Puerto Rico
Coat of arms
Anthem: "San Germán es mi pueblo querido"
Location of San Germán in Puerto Rico
Location of San Germán in Puerto Rico
Country Puerto Rico
Founded 1573
Area
 • Municipality 54.51 sq mi (141.18 km2)
 • Land 54.51 sq mi (141.18 km2)
 • Water 0.0 sq mi (0 km2)
Elevation 528 ft (161 m)
Population (2010)
 • Municipality 35,527
 • Density 651.75/sq mi (251.643/km2)
 • Metro 136,212
 • CSA 251,260
Demonym(s) Sangermeños
Time zone AST (UTC-4)
ZIP codes 00683, 00636
Website municipiodesangerman.com

San Germán (Spanish pronunciation: [saŋ xerˈman], Saint Germain) is a municipality located in the southwestern region of Puerto Rico, south of Mayagüez and Maricao, north of Lajas, east of Hormigueros and Cabo Rojo, and west of Sabana Grande. San Germán is spread over eighteen wards and San Germán Pueblo (The downtown area and the administrative center of the city). It is both a principal city of the San Germán–Cabo Rojo Metropolitan Statistical Area and the Mayagüez–San Germán–Cabo Rojo Combined Statistical Area. San Germán is the second oldest city of Puerto Rico, after San Juan. The island of Puerto Rico was once split between the San Juan and the San Germán municipalities. The latter extended from a line from Arecibo in the north to Ponce in the south, westward to the sea.

History

Spanish settlement in the original city of San Germán occurred early in the conquest and colonization of Puerto Rico. After the destruction of a small early settlement near modern-day Añasco during a Taíno uprising which started in February 1511, the new settlement was built by Miguel Diaz at Guayanilla and named after Germaine of Foix, the new queen of King Fernando. This town was attacked by French corsairs in August 1528, May 1538 and 1554. The construction of a small fort began in 1540, but work stopped in 1546 when the population of the town began moving inland to the current modern location.

An early written reference to the new town occurs in 1573. A letter sent to Spain's king Philip II mentions a city with the names of Nueva Salamanca and San Germán. Spanish conquerors used the name Nueva Salamanca to honor the city of Salamanca in Spain.

On May 12, 1570, the Royal Audience of Santo Domingo (see Audiencia) ordered that both the populations of San Germán and Santa María de Guadianilla be merged into a single city due to the constant attacks. The new city was built on the hills of Santa Marta, next to the Guanajibo River in 1573. Its official name was Nueva Villa de Salamanca, named after the city of Salamanca in Spain. However, the population would call the city San Germán el Nuevo (The New San Germán) and, eventually, the Villa de San Germán (The Village of San Germán).

San Germán is also known as the founding city of towns, given the fact that in 1514 the Spanish crown separated the island into two administrative territories (Partidos). The borders of the two partidos were established as the Camuy River to the north and the Jacagua river to the south. They were named the San Juan Partition and the San Germán Partition.

Towns that came out of the San Germán Partition

  • Aguada — Founded in 1508
  • Ponce — Founded in 1692
  • Añasco — Founded in 1733
  • San Sebastián — Founded in 1752
  • Yauco — Founded in 1756
  • Mayagüez — Founded in 1760
  • Cabo Rojo — Founded in 1771
  • Rincón — Founded in 1771
  • Moca — Founded in 1772
  • Aguadilla — Founded in 1775
  • Peñuelas — Founded in 1793
  • Camuy — Founded in 1807
  • Sabana Grande — Founded in 1813
  • Isabela — Founded in 1819
  • Quebradillas — Founded in 1823
  • Lares — Founded in 1827
  • Guayanilla — Founded in 1833
  • Las Marías — Founded in 1871
  • Maricao — Founded in 1874
  • Hormigueros — Founded in 1874
  • Lajas — Founded in 1883
  • Guánica — Founded in 1914

Geography

Mountains: Alto del Descanso (2,520 ft; 768 m) and Tetas de Cerro Gordo (2,897 ft; 883 m).

Rivers: Río Caín, Río Duey, Río Rosario, Río Guanajibo (Estero), Río Hoconuco Guamá and Rio El Brujo

Climate

Climate data for San Germán, Puerto Rico (1898-2013)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 32.8
(91)
33.3
(91.9)
35
(95)
35
(95)
35
(95)
37.2
(99)
37.2
(99)
36.1
(97)
36.7
(98.1)
36.1
(97)
36.7
(98.1)
36.7
(98.1)
37.2
(99)
Average high °C (°F) 30.6
(87.1)
30.6
(87.1)
31.1
(88)
31.7
(89.1)
32.2
(90)
32.8
(91)
33.3
(91.9)
33.3
(91.9)
32.8
(91)
32.2
(90)
31.7
(89.1)
31.1
(88)
31.95
(89.51)
Daily mean °C (°F) 23.9
(75)
23.9
(75)
24.4
(75.9)
25.6
(78.1)
26.7
(80.1)
27.2
(81)
27.2
(81)
27.2
(81)
27.2
(81)
26.7
(80.1)
25.6
(78.1)
24.4
(75.9)
25.83
(78.5)
Average low °C (°F) 16.7
(62.1)
16.7
(62.1)
17.8
(64)
18.9
(66)
20.6
(69.1)
21.7
(71.1)
21.1
(70)
21.1
(70)
21.1
(70)
20.6
(69.1)
19.4
(66.9)
17.2
(63)
19.41
(66.94)
Record low °C (°F) 6.7
(44.1)
10.6
(51.1)
10.0
(50)
10.0
(50)
13.3
(55.9)
14.4
(57.9)
11.7
(53.1)
14.4
(57.9)
15.6
(60.1)
13.3
(55.9)
11.7
(53.1)
9.4
(48.9)
6.7
(44.1)
Rainfall mm (inches) 63.8
(2.512)
55.6
(2.189)
55.6
(2.189)
87.1
(3.429)
130.6
(5.142)
68.6
(2.701)
79.5
(3.13)
132.8
(5.228)
157.5
(6.201)
185.2
(7.291)
145.0
(5.709)
59.2
(2.331)
1,220.5
(48.051)
Source: The Weather Channel,

Cityscape

Barrios

  • Ancones
  • Caín Alto
  • Caín Bajo
  • Cotuí
  • Duey Alto
  • Duey Bajo
  • Guamá
  • Hoconuco Alto
  • Hoconuco Bajo
  • Maresúa
  • Minillas
  • Rosario Alto
  • Rosario Bajo
  • Rosario Peñón
  • Sabana Eneas
  • Sabana Grande Abajo
  • San Germán Pueblo
  • Tuna
  • Retiro
Due to its large size, Minillas is usually subdivided into Minillas Valle, Minillas Carretera and Minillas Parcelas.

Tourism

San Germán is the site of the Porta Coeli church, one of the earliest Spanish cathedrals built in Latin America. Porta Coeli is still a major attraction that brings both domestic and international tourists every year.

Landmarks and places of interest

San German Historic district
Plaza Santo Domingo, located in the San Germán Historic District
San Germán Auxerre
Plaza Francisco Mariano Quiñones and the Church San Germán de Auxerre
  • Puente de Bolas (Bridge of Balls)
  • Casa Morales
  • Ceiba de la Libertad
  • Historic Gallery
  • Lola Rodríguez de Tió Museum
  • Casa Cruz de la Luna
  • Ramírez de Arrellano y Rossell Museum
  • Santo Domingo Plazuela
  • Three Races and One Culture Mural
  • San Germán Historic District
  • Porta Coeli
  • Inter-American University of Puerto Rico
  • Church San Germán de Auxerre
  • La Barrica, Original Spanish Tavern. Circa 1847

The urban center of San Germán is mainly composed of Spanish colonial houses. Many have been restored and conserve their Spanish look while other houses are somewhat abandoned and in poor condition. There are ongoing projects employing public and private funding to preserve and restore many houses and monuments and to maintain San Germán's colonial era look.

Culture

Festivals and events

  • Patron Celebrations (St. Germain d'Auxerre and Santa Rosa de Lima) - July
  • Festival de la Pana - July
  • Anón Festival - September
  • Christmas Festival - December
  • Christmas Parade - Early December
  • Patron Celebrations (The Virgin of the Rosary) — Celebrated in San Germán's Ward, Rosario Poblado, which borders Mayagüez.

Sports

San Germán is home to one of Puerto Rico's oldest basketball franchises, dating back to the 1930s, the San Germán Athletics (los Atléticos de San Germán), nicknamed "The Orange Monster". Many glories of Puerto Rican basketball have played in San Germán, a city that is also known as "The Crib of Puerto Rican Basketball". Some of those players are Arquelio Torres, José "Piculín" Ortiz, Eddie Casiano, Nelson Quiñones, Elías "Larry" Ayuso, Christian Dalmau, and so many others. Their home court is The Arquelio Torres Ramírez Court, which houses approximately 5,000 fans.

The Athletic's fan base is most commonly referred to as their sixth man, or "The Orange Monster". This is because for a visiting team it's extremely hard to win in San Germán due to how vigorous and "into" the game the fans are.

The Athletics have been to 26 National Superior Basketball (BSN) Finals, of which one was cancelled (1953) due to confiscation because of a fight between players from San Germán and the Ponce Lions, giving birth to Puerto Rican basketball's most intense rivalry.

Championships (14): 1932, 1936, 1939, 1941, 1942, 1943, 1947, 1948, 1949, 1950, 1985, 1991, 1994, 1997 Sub-Championships (11): 1931, 1933, 1936, 1938, 1940, 1954, 1955, 1956, 1957, 1965, 1986

Demographics

Racial distribution
Racial - (self-defined) San Germán, Puerto Rico
- 2010 Census
Race Population  % of Total
White 29,614 83.4%
Black/African American 1,989 5.6%
American Indian and
Alaska Native
129 0.4%
Asian 41 0.1%
Native Hawaiian
Pacific Islander
5 0.0%
Some other race 2,992 8.4%
Two or more races 727 2.1%

Symbols

Flag

Green - The Episcopal dignity and also the color of the Shield of Christopher Columbus and his son, don Diego Colón, Viceroy of the Indies, who named the city in honor of Germana de Foix.

White - The purity of the blood of the great families who colonized San Germán.

Purple - Color of the Shield of Juan Ponce de León, first governor of Puerto Rico.

Coat of Arms

First Quarter: The Mitre and the Staff in a green field represent St. Germain of Auxerre, the Patron Saint of the city.

Second Quarter: The second quarter exhibits the arms of the Kingdoms of Aragón and Sicily, where don Fernando the Catholic reigned.

Third Quarter: In this quarter the arms combine with the County of Foix and the Kingdom of France, which constitute the family shields of Germaine de Foix whose name is perpetuated as the name of the city of San Germán.

Fourth Quarter: Is Ponce de León's shield, The Crown: Is a civic or municipal standard and is used as a stamp for towns and cities; San Germán was assigned five towers to denote that this population formally obtained the title of city from the Spanish crown in the nineteenth century.

Notable Puerto Ricans from San Germán

  • PFC Joseph (José) R. Martínez destroyed a German infantry unit and tank in Tunisia, during World War II, by providing heavy artillery fire, saving his platoon from being attacked in the process. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, second only to the Medal of Honor, by General George S. Patton, thus becoming the first Puerto Rican recipient of said military decoration.
  • Ubaldino Ramírez de Arellano — Senator
  • Lola Rodríguez de Tió — poet, author of the original lyrics of Puerto Rico's national anthem, La Borinqueña, and pro-independence advocate
  • Benicio del Toro — Award-winning actor
  • Francisco Mariano Quiñones — Abolitionist and politician
  • Samuel R. Quiñones — Longest-serving President of the Puerto Rico Senate, serving for twenty years.

Images for kids


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