History of Rawson

The present City of Rawson (originally named Trerawson) was first called Fuerte Viejo (Old Fort) by the local colonists. It used to be a British colony founded by Henry Libanus Jones. An important number of Welsh families settled down there later on and by the mid nineteenth century, the site already became self-sufficient. Thus, in 1865 Rawson officially adopted the Argentinian flag and its present name, suggested by Lieutenant Colonel Julián Murga in honor of the then Home Secretary, Mr. Guillermo Rawson. The new settlers of the town came from Puerto Madryn. Approximately 150 Welsh colonists settled down at this location and did not take long to organize themselves into a Council of Twelve proposed and moderated by themselves. It used to function as the legislative branch of government. There were also a governor and two courts of justice. It was not until 1876 that the national government sent the first official commissioner of the colony: Antonio Oneto. Later on, when the law providing for the creation of the National Territory of Chubut was passed in 1884, the colony adopted the structure of a territory ruled by a governor and its boundaries were laid out. Jorge Fontana was appointed first governor in 1885. Three years later, the municipal government and its first council -in charge of Gregorio Mayo- were created. Rawson was finally named capital of the Province of Chubut after the province was officially acknowledged by the Constitution in 1957. The city developed quietly but constantly and with essential elements that encouraged its growth, such as the railway, Playa Unión, the commercial port turned into fishing port later on and the publication of the first newspaper in Spanish.

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