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How did you travel around the country when there were no cars?

The downstream of the Paraná River revealed one of those relics of water transport. A boat from a time when there were no cars.

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¿Cómo se viajaba por el país cuando no había autos?

This is one of those “silly” questions, which we all ask, and which in the end are the ones that are worth asking. How did people travel in our country when there were no cars, buses and planes? The horse and the cart is the first option we can think of. But what after that? How did people travel from Buenos Aires to Corrientes? We are used to thinking of a very remote past or a very close past. But what about in the middle? In the middle there were boats. But not just some.

The point is that the unprecedented downstream of the Paraná River left a lot of things uncovered. On the shores of Ita Ibaté, Corrientes, were found the remains of a ship that had sailed in 1900. This quaint, ancient steamboat on wheels comes with a story telling how you traveled the country. If we make a small effort, we can imagine the Argentinian coastal landscape in the middle of the 19th century. What do you see? The Paraná River was filled with small wheeled steamboats that went from Buenos Aires to Corrientes. Passengers and goods went from one side to the other of the Paraná River and Uruguay. These were times when land transport was complicated, there were still no cars, buses or planes.

Travel with steam and wheels

Traveling on one of those ships would have been a wonderful thing. What can win a ride on the water with a large wheel of wooden pallets in motion? The thing is that these photogenic boats were in fashion for that time in the world and later in Argentina. But, like all fashion, it had a beginning and an end.

The first of these ships sailed for the first time on the River Seine. They say it reached a speed of 5 km per hour. Naturally, it was slow, but by that time it was quite a breakthrough. Since steamships allowed travel no longer to depend on the whims of the weather. These beautiful means of maritime transport came to an end when they were replaced by propeller ships . That is why today they are a relic of other times with air of steam and wood.

The work of the Paraná Department of Prefecture has been very important in safeguarding the remains of this ship. Thanks to them, the entire structure of one of the wheels of the Correntino ship has been rescued, along with other things. In addition, from the Municipality of Ita Ibaté, work is being done to preserve the remains of this glorious ship.


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Publication Date: 07/05/2020

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