Sivut kuvina

The total amount paid for education in 1889 was $886,954.62, and for the school year of 1890 $1,007,942.20; a notable difference due to the increasing progress of the nation.


The standing army is garrisoned in the chief towns of the departments and in other important cities and ports. The effective force of each garrison varies according to circumstances, but gen-, erally it is not very large. The militia numbers over 50,000 men well disciplined.

The Roman Catholic religion is accepted by the majority of the inhabitants, but freedom of worship is complete and guaranteed by Article 24 of the Constitution. The seat of the archbishopric for all Central America is in the city of Guatemala. There are 17 dioceses and 111 parishes.


Article 26 of the Constitution guarantees the complete liberty of the press. A large number of newspapers are published in the capital and other principal cities. The most important are: El Guatemalteco, which is the official organ of the Republic; El Diario de Centro-América; La Bandera Nacional; El Bien Público; La Revista, organ of the Guatemalian Academy; Correspondent of the Spanish Academy; one illustrated paper, the Centro-América Ilustrada; and one English newspaper, called The Guatemala Star.


The standard of weight adopted is the Spanish pound: One libra has 16 ounces, 1 ounce 16 drachmas; 1 arroba is 25 pounds; 1 quintal, 4 arrobas, or 100 pounds; 1 ton, 20 quintals, or 2,000 pounds. One quintal is equivalent to 46 kilograms, or 101.449 English pounds.

As a measure of length the Spanish vara of 836 millimeters has been adopted. One vara is 3 feet, or 36 inches; 1 mile is 2,2223 varas; 1 league is 3 miles, or 6,666% varas. In calculating distances, however, 5,000 varas or 4.180 kilometers are usually computed to the league.

For land measures: One manzana is composed of 100 varas; 1 caballeria is 644 manzanas. In official acts, however, as well as in professional calculations, the metrical-decimal system is used to-day exclusively.


The national standard of money is the dollar; its weight being equal to that of the 5-franc piece, and of the same standard—900 grains fine. The silver dollars of Mexico, the United States, Spain, Peru, and Chile, circulate freely at par, as well as the French, the Italian and Belgian five-franc pieces, and those of other nations. belonging to the monetary union.

The peso is worth 100 centavos (hundredth), the peseta is worth 25 centavos (hundredth), the real is worth 12% centavos (hundredth), the medio is worth 64 centavos (hundredth), the cuartillo is worth 3% centavos (hundredth). Lately, the coinage of the piece of 10, 5, and 1 centavos has been authorized; and probably, before long, the decimal system will be used exclusively.

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Chapter V.


Agriculture in Guatemala has attained a considerable develop


ment, and every day gives new evidence of progress. such as rice, maize, and wheat are cultivated on a large scale, yet the production is not sufficient for home consumption. The cultivation of wheat, particularly, could be greatly increased, for immense tracts of land still untilled are well adapted to it. This neglected land accounts for the small amount of the actual crops and the necessity of importing every year from the United States. between four and five millions kilograms (11,000,000 pounds) of flour, and 200,000 kilograms (440,000 pounds) of wheat.

The celebrated cacao called the Soconusco, known to-day under the name of Guatemala cacao, is claimed to be the best in the world, and is a natural product of the country, but it is little used in the United States and Europe, beause it is cultivated to such a small extent that the production is scarcely sufficient for the consumption of the country. The cultivation of that valuable product would prove a considerable source of wealth were it properly managed.

The exportation of gutta-percha amounts to 4,000 quintals (400,000 pounds) a year. The tree grows in abundance, but this is another branch of industry that is much neglected. Great profits could be derived from it.

Tobacco is also very abundant and of a superior quality. Its production is simply limited to the purchases made by the Government, which has the monopoly of the trade. For exportation,


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