GUADALAJARA, MEXICO – Then and Now!


So this is just a taste of everything
that we are going to be learning today as we explore downtown, and we will relay
the most important, useful, and interesting details for you guys about
the history of the city. Good morning guys! We are here in the center of Guadalajara, learning about the history, and the beginnings of the city from our
new friend Eduardo, who knows a lot about architecture, and the general history of
Mexico, and specifically this city. We’re here in Centro Historico by kiosko
here. Every city in Mexico, at least the ones that were founded by the Spaniards,
has one of these. Eduardo is also telling us that, in addition to this kiosko at
the very center of the city, you’re also going to have what is behind us. A
cathedral, and then what is to the left of us here, which is the government? Office of the state.
Office of the governor, and then also the house of the founders, which is just that
a way. But the house of the founders has since been destroyed? Yes is has been destroyed, it was here five hundred years ago. Okay. And now there are other buildings that have replaced that. Well you were saying the architecture of them is from the, has Baroque influences from Europe? Yep, yep. So the Spanish discovered Greek manuscripts long ago. Those said that cities should
be built on a grid. That’s what they followed here in Mexico when they were
conquering. The cities they built here in Mexico were built with a grid shape with
a similar kiosko, cathedral, government building, house of the founders. So this
kiosko here is probably one the most ornate ones we’ve seen in Mexico. There’s
so many details on it. And this was actually given to the Mexican government
by the French at the beginning of the 20th century. So this is just a taste of
everything that we are going to be learning today as we explore downtown,
and we will relay the most important, useful, and interesting details for you
guys about the history of the city. So we are here right now in Plaza Liberación,
right in front of a statue of Miguel Hidalgo. Which we have gone down the
street in Guadalajara called Miguel Hidalgo like a hundred times, and never, ever knew the history behind it. That’s something that’s very common here
in Mexico, is to name streets after important people in the history of the
country. So we were just learning that Miguel Hidalgo was a priest who was very
influential in abolishing slavery initially, and this was 60 years before
Abraham Lincoln did the same thing in the US. But, as far as here in Mexico,
apparently it was never actually legal, but it was still practiced, so he made
sure that that was done for completely, and that’s why, of course we’re standing
in front of a statue acknowledging him right now. He led the independence army
around 1810. The next thing we’re learning here, which i think is pretty
interesting, is that around the time that slavery was being officially abolished,
and there was a lot of transfer of power, where Mexico wanted to be free of the
control of Spain. It wasn’t very structured. It was just that people
decided we don’t want to be under the thumb of Spain’s rule or control anymore,
so we’re just gonna take over the power, and we’re gonna make these changes
ourselves. But it wasn’t a specific like President or Emperor. It was a time of
instability, so someone was able to just say okay I’m in charge now.
And then people sort of just went along with it. Basically, that’s how we got here. So here we stand in Plaza Liberación. The cathedral is behind me now and you have
some important buildings around here. Like this is the most important building
of the executive branch of government of Guadalajara, over here the most important
building of the judicial branch, the legislative branch, and here’s a theater,
and a museum. Around 1960 this plaza was built. It used to look like the old
buildings behind me here, but now we have a couple fountains you have
very popular Guadalajara sign that everyone likes to take a picture in
front of. And this was all around the time of 1960 that this was the plaza? In their era, they wanted to modernize the City Center, so they destroyed a lot of buildings and built plazas and avenues. Okay, and that was partly because they wanted cars to be able to move though? Yes. And also just to revitalize sort of? Yeah. Okay. Did that
happen with a lot of cities in Mexico? Yes, but Guadalajara was the most destroyed. We are standing in front of another very old, very awesome building, built in the
1860s. And this is Teatro Degollado. Yes. Teatro Degollado. [Laughter] And in contrast to some of the other buildings which have the Baroque
style, this has Greek architecture and Neo? Neo classic. Neoclassic. So a whole lot of mix of different styles here. And what plays here is the Jalisco Philharmonic
Orchestra. [Laughter] Philharmonic Orchestra. Eduardo was sharing that you can get discounted
tickets a lot of times, or they sometimes do free, but it would be about 200 pesos
to sit in the very front row if you wanted to come see them play. So right
now I’m standing in front of Templo de San Agustin or St. Augustine Temple, and
this building is one of the oldest here in Guadalajara. Not quite the oldest, it’s
about three or four hundred years old. So now I’m standing in front of a statue of
Beatriz Hernandez who is a Spanish woman and the one responsible for founding
Guadalajara. And that was after three other failed attempts by other people to
found the city. In various locations that they could not agree on. Rumor has it
that, well it is a fact that the law said you needed a hundred people to found a
city. In agreement over. Yeah and rumor has it that she didn’t have a hundred people, so she rounded up some cows, and chickens, and animals, and was
like “Okay we have a hundred now.” This is good enough! We’re doing it here! Not in the mountains, not in the North, we’re doing it here. So right now we’re standing in
front of the Plaza Fundadores, which is a representation of the 50 different
families from Spain that founded Guadalajara. The thing that I think is, I found the most interesting, is that the name itself Guadalajara came from the
influence of the Arab language, and it was originally Guadalajira which is
because, either it reminded them of a river in Spain, or because of the river
San Juan de Dios. San Juan de Dios. San Juan de Dios, that originally ran through Guadalajara. And Guadalajira means a river that goes across rocks. I thought that was fascinating! I don’t think I’ve ever learned where actually
the name of any city, ever, I have never learned where any city’s name actually came from. And yet I still don’t know how to actually pronounce it. [Laughter] We’ll get there eventually! Guadalajara. Guadalajara. Guadalajara. [Laughter] One day. So right now we are standing by this fountain on Calzada Independencia.
In the early 1900s this actually used to be a river flowing right here, San Juan
de Dios, but then they put it, put the river into a tube. What’s the word for
that in Spanish? Intuba. I don’t think there’s a word for that in English. They do that here in Mexico with many rivers. Mexico City was full of rivers and they put in a tube, all of them. To control them and be able to manage the city? They were not that deep also, so they could do that. So historically in Guadalajara, on the east side of Calzada Independencia
was where the indigenous people lived, generally, and it was a less wealthy area.
And on the west side of it, it was where the Spanish were living, and they were
the wealthier people at the time. That still remains true to this day
to an extent, on the east side there, it tends to be less wealthy, and on the west
side more wealthy. There are. More revitalized. There are exceptions to the rule today though. We’re still in the same spot
as before where we were talking about the river, which is now a tunnel going
underneath, and dividing the city. Behind us we have Fuente de la Inmolación de Quetzalcóatl. [Laughter] Impermeabilización (speaking like a robot). Inmolación de Quetzalcóatl Okay, we’re going to call that good. [Laughter] And this has a lot of interesting history. There’s a story behind it that is from Aztec
origins, that there was a god of light that sacrificed himself so that the
world could have light. So that is the representation here. You have in the
middle a snake which actually does not have a head, because the sculptor who
made it, made the head out of completely solid bronze. And it became too heavy for
the ground here to support it. So now it is over here because the ground is
hollow underneath. Yeah it’s over the avenue. There’s a road going under
here, and it was too heavy to put right in the middle, so it’s over here on solid
ground. And there’s four of these smaller statues surrounding this big thing in
the middle. Each one of them represents a snake with feathers on it. So if you see the Guadalajara flag or the Jalisco flag, you’ll see it has this coat of arms
with two lions and a tree. This coat of arms was given to city by King Carlos V of Spain. He was recognizing the village as an official
city. So we are here at La Rotunda De Hombres Illustres. Well, that was the old name,
but it’s basically a circle with statues of some of the most important people
here in the history of Guadalajara. But. Like architects, painters, engineers, writers,
humanitarians, and such. But they said hey we can’t have it named that, because that’s
like that’s saying it’s all men, and now there are women here. So they changed it to Rotunda De Los Jaliciences Illustres. Instead of hombres illustres. So people from Jalisco. People from the state of Jalisco, exactly. They were
cremated and some of their remains are here in the center. For the majority of
this time, we’ve been focusing on the history and how Guadalajara got
its start, and what components helped to build the city, and the important
buildings here. But what we just learned is something very cool and that is what
is to come for the future. And approximately 50 years ago this street
that we were standing on right now was created so that cars, and buses, and
everything could go through. But more recently, the powers that be decided, nope
we’re going to take that away, this is going to be a pedestrian Avenue. And
we’re standing on Calle Alcade? Fray Antonio Alcade. Me and names. My goodness. [Laughter] And so this is supposed to be, in the
coming years similar to Avenida Chapultepec, where it
has probably a lot of restaurants, and a lot of things happening, and sculptures, vendors, fountains, sculptures, and a really popular tourist place. So it’s not much to see right now because
there’s a lot of construction going on. But, that is what this is going to
be in the future. So another cool thing to look forward to in this city. It’s
interesting that just fifty years ago destroyed a bunch of buildings and stuff
to make it so cars can drive down here, and now, right now. Abort mission! Took cars away! And now it’s once again for pedestrians. Hope you guys enjoy these details
that we shared with you today. If we got anything wrong, hopefully we didn’t, just
let us know down in the comments, that way we can share that with other people
so we get all the facts straight. We definitely butchered so many of
the names, huge apologies for that. If you know any other fun facts about the city,
of any of the places we visited, please let us know! So if you liked this video,
please make sure to give it a thumbs up, and subscribe to our channel. We put out
more videos just like this about Guadalajara and our travels in Mexico.
And GONG That Bell, so you get notified every time we put out a new video. Before
you go, big thank you to Eduardo for giving us all these great details about
the history of the city and taking us around. He reached out to us recently and
wanted to share some more about the city with us. And we basically didn’t know any
of this. So this was really, really cool to find out, more of the roots and
the history of Guadalajara. All right bye guys!

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