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Essay/Term paper: Chile

Essay, term paper, research paper:  Geography

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In this project we are going to summarize the main points concerning the history of CHILE , its independance, and bring the country to present day CHILE. We are also going to mention some important facts about CHILE"S economy.


CHILE is a country located in the wester coast of South America, on the Pacific Ocean. It is known for the famous Andes Mountain Range that covers all of Peru and part of Chile
CHILE was first discovered in 1520 by a Portuguese navigator named Ferdinand Magellan, who sailed under the flag of Spain. It was not until 1536 that CHILE was explored by a Spaniard named Diego de Almagro. Almagro was an associate of Francisco Pizarro in the conquest of Peru. In 1540 a conquistador named Pedro de Valdivia made a second expedition into CHILE He arrived in CHILE in 1541 and claimed the land under the crown of Spain. He founded the city of Santiago in February of that year, and appointed a Cabildo (Council) of Conquistadores to control local affairs.


In December of 1553, Valdivia set out for the fort of Concepcion to avenge the death of three soldiers, after word had reached him that the Indians had murdered them. He did not know the Indians had an ambush prepared for him. Valdivia was captured and executed, his entire army was also killed.
The Spaniards eventually dominated CHILE During this period CHILE was a Captaincy General of Spain and supposedly governed from Peru, where Spain had a more important government because Peru was rich in Inca gold. In reality, because CHILE was farther away geographically, local affairs were controlled by a governor who commanded the army and each town had its own Cabildo (Council).
CHILE had plenty of wars. The Indians refused to stay quiet. Until the mid 1700"s, these wars against the Indians were payed for by Peru, which provided money to CHILE to maintain CHILE"S government in Santiago and an army on the frontier. CHILE was poor and dependent on its richer neighbor for wealth and security.


One of the most important reasons for CHILE"S independence as well as other Latin American countries, was the emergence of a class of CRIOLLOS (Creoles). Creoles were American born Spaniards, who were different from the Iberians. They developed a desire for a self-government. The Criollos, then, began and supported a movement in order to gain independence from Spain. The Criollos had a lot of influence in the merchant class as well as in the upper class of CHILE. They resented Spain"s trading system. For tax reasons, all trade with Spain had to pass through Panama by land to the Caribbean and Havana, Cuba, instead of directly by ship from the port of Valparaiso. This system was definitely one of the reasons Spain lost its American colonies.
Spain was also facing problems in providing its colonies with a good variety of manufactured goods. The Spanish economy was not doing well. The colonies began buying manufactured goods from other countries, especially Britain. The British in turn, supported Criollo political demands.
There were many other factors which also contributed to the fever of independence. Among them was the independence of the United States from Britain, in 1776, the overthrow of the Frnch Monarchy, Napoleon"s invasion of Spain, and many new intellectual ideas of the times.
In the 1820"s independence movements in America united against Spain. Simon Bolivar and an army of Criollos marched south from Venezuela, while Jose de San Martin and his Army of the Andes marched over the cordillera from Argentina into CHILE. Bernardo O"Higgins became supreme director of the new Chilean Republic. Formal independence of CHILE came in 1818.

During the 20th century, Chile has been throgh a few types of government, dictatorship and currently democracy.
In 1973, the military took control of president Salvador Allende"s goverment. Allende was the elected president of Chile during this period. The U.S. did not wanted Allende as president of Chile for many reason, so they killed him in a millitary coup. This coup was led by General Augusto Pinochet Ugarte,who, at this point, became dictator of the nation. For many years, Pinochet and the military ruled Chile. Before Pinochet was the dictator of Chile, he was the chief of the army. Then he overthrowed the president, and became dictator. The U.S wanted Pinochet better than Allende, because Pinochet was someone that the U.S army could control. (Talk more about Pinochet in the oral presentation) One of the things Pinochet is mostly remembered for, was the killing of thousands of people during a protest.
Many attempts were made to overthrough Pinochet"s government. Most of them failed, however. In the late 1980"s, Pinochet resigned fron office because of world pressure.

After his resignation, Patricio Aylwin became president. Chile"s current president is Eduardo Frei.
Today Chile is the country in Latin America that has had the greatest economic growth for the last five years.

Based on our research, we predict that Chile will continue to have a democratic government.We also think that the economy will get beter, as the democratic government is put into action. I also think that democracy will be in Chile for a long period of time


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