Additional Chilean History

Chile's history is as multi-faceted as the country is long. Just as pre-Hispanic cultures throughout Chile varied from one ecological niche to another, so too does each region have its own post-Conquest historical events and traditions, separate economy and demographics.

Though Chile shares a legacy of Iberian colonialism with the rest of South America, historical similarities seem to end with independence in 1810. Contrary to popular conceptions of Latin American governments, Chile enjoyed an unbroken history of democratic rule until the 1973 military coup, and since 1989 has resumed this long-lived democratic tradition.

Many events in Chile's history run counter to popular expectations. Isolated from the rest of the continent and accessible only by sea, Chile was largely shaped by European immigrants who arrived to take advantage of the country's vast natural resources: silver, gold and copper, saltpeter, guano, fishmeal, lithium, borax, wheat, fruit, coal, wood, whale oil, seal skins, and petroleum.

Chile's history is the story of a people making a life, and a country, in one of the world's most unusual landscapes.

Thanks to the Tourism Promotion Corporation of Chile : 202-530-4109