Guadalajara is a beautiful, spacious city on a plain, surrounded by mountains. It is a modern commercial metropolis with many picturesque survivals of the Spanish colonial era. The mild, clear, dry climate has made it a popular health resort, and because of its charm it is often called Perla del Occidente ( Pearl of the West ).
Guadalajara is also an important communications and industrial center. Industry is aided by direct Railroad and air service to the U.S., and by a hydroelectric plant utilizing the Juanacatlan falls on the Santiago River.
Food processing; manufacturing of xerographic and photographic equipment, plastics, chemicals, and electronic products are among the leading industries. The region around the city is important for agricultural and livestock raising; some coal is also mined. Big tourist area.
The most famous products of Guadalajara and its environs are intricately designed and finely worked glassware and pottery.
Founded by Cristobal de Onate c.1530, Guadalajara was moved twice, before and during the Mixton War, because of military pressure by the region’s native inhabitants; it was permanently est. in 1542, the date chosen as its official founding. Guadalajara became the seat of the audiencia of Nueva Galicia. Easily captured in 1810 by Hidalgo y Costilla during the war against Spain, the city was the center of reform activities. Again in 1858, in the War of Reform, it was briefly occupied by the liberals under Benito Juarez. Miguel Hidalgo International airport to South.
Its notable public buildings include the cathedral, finished in 1618 after more than 50 years of work, and the governor’s palace, begun in 1643. The cathedral, which houses B. E. Murillo’s The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin, has been partially destroyed several times by earthquakes and represents a conglomerate of architectural styles. The governor’s palace, with murals by J. C. Orozco, is an excellent example of Spanish colonial architecture. The University of Guadalajara and the orphanage chapel also contain Orozco murals.