History of Paysandú

The origin of the City of Paysandú dates back to 1750, when this place was used as a port to embark livestock. Due to its strategic location by the river, the city experienced a rapid growth and it was the second largest settlement until the early XX century.

The history of the city is tightly bond to important episodes related with the Independence exploits. Its square was attacked in several opportunities. Therefore, the city is known as "The Heroic One" due to the defense it put up between 1864 and 1865 before the Brazilian army and General Venancio Flores. This event is considered one of the most epic and heroic defenses of the city: 1,400 men resisted 17,000 strongly armed soldiers.

In 1871, the Santa María salting house began to operate on the riverbank. This brought along a great demographic growth, which gave way to the establishment of schools, the hospital and the police station.

In 1913, the last slaughter in the salting house was carried out. This led to an exodus of the local families in search for a new source of sustain. This situation remained until 1930, when the petrol company Ancap built its alcohol plant first, and its fuel and Portland cement plants later and gave a new impulse to the region. In 1952, the first oil boat arrived in the pier of Paysandú.

As time passed, the Paysandú-Colón Bridge, called José Artigas, was inaugurated and a citrus company named Azucitrus was settled there, which consolidated employment in the entire region.

It is important to point out that Paysandú commemorates its anniversary as a city on June 8, when big celebrations are held with gaucho parades, sports and cultural shows.