Mollendo is a town bordering the Pacific Ocean in southern Peru. It is
located in the
Arequipa Region and is the capital of both the Islay
Province and the
Mollendo was the main port in the
Peruvian southern coast until
Matarani was developed about 50 years
ago; the port of
Mollendo only serves fishermen for the local economy
currently and all the commercial shipping is done through
kilometers north; the old port is in ruins. From about 1830 to 1880 it
was important in the
The railroad used to run a passenger train daily, but a good highway
Mollendo to the
Panamerican Highway now and the train now
only runs the summer express that goes down from
Arequipa on Saturday
and returns on Sunday; the beach is the main attraction, even though
it is visited by the
Humboldt Current that brings cold water from
Antarctica.In the summer months, which run from January to March, the
population more than doubles as people from the largest city in the
Mollendo and its beaches as a vacation spot,
especially on weekends.
Mollendo exports wool and has industries
producing cement, textiles, canned fish, and cheese. It is also a
popular beach resort. The Auxiliary Ship
BAP Mollendo (ATC-131) of the
Peruvian Navy is named after the town.
1.2 First inhabitants
1.3 War of the Pacific
4 See also
6 External links
About 1300, the legendary
Inca Mayta Cápac, puts the regions of
Arequipa and Moquegua under the control of the
Inca empire. Sixty
three years later, and according to Garcilaso de la Vega, the Inca
Cápac Yupanqui, following traditional customs of the
selected four generals from his major staff and entrusted them the
command of approximately twenty thousand soldiers (or Tuqui Titos) for
the coast region conquest project.
Cápac Yupanqui's son, Sinchi Rocca, conquered all of
Moquegua coast area. From this event and ahead, Tambo is a main
protagonist into the region history, due their geographical position
and serving as weapons and food supply depot.
Inca Yáhuar Huácac,
Inca Cápac Yupanqui, established his supply depots and
headquarters in this valley, to march into Atacama (north Chilean
region) direction to expand the territory of the
After Tiahuanaco's culture decadency and during the
Inca era, Peruvian
south coast were occupied for several tribes:
The "Tampus" stationed into today Tambo region.
The "Chullis" corresponding to Chule zone.
The "Changos" located between the Aranta and Islay zones.
The river basin formed by the Tambo river, probably conquest and
occupied by external forces during several periods, generate a
population with local and heterogeneous customs, leaving several
vestiges about their civilization, suddenly attached to the remaining
mixed etymology name from several languages such as Quechua,
Cocachacra, Challascapi, etc. Another external influences were the
Kauiqui and Puquina with characteristic suffixes such as ando, endo,
indo. Some examples are: Cachendo, Mollendo, Huarindo, Catarindo, etc.
A large population were located along the valley and nearing hills,
serving it from subterranean waters. Influence of the sea was decisive
on the valley and coast inhabitants were the mama coccha (the sea
creator) provide them with fish and sea fruits.
War of the Pacific
War of the Pacific
War of the Pacific
Mollendo was invaded by Chilean forces
under the command of Colonel Orozimbo Barbosa. The main idea of this
army (transported by the Chilean Navy) was to wreak havoc on Southern
Peru, so as to force the process of negotiations for peace between
Peru and Chile. The invasion forces consisted of the 3rd Chilean Line
Infantry Regiment, The Chilean Marines, One brigade of Chilean
Sappers, and 30 Horse Cavalry. The defenses of
Mollendo consisted of
two small forts with no cannon ( which were days earlier transported
to Arequipa) defended by 100 soldiers. The first to disembark were the
Chilean Marines, who took the town without a struggle. The rest (Main
Body) of the expedition landed on or near Islay, without opposition.
On March 9, 1880, the Main Body of the expedition entered Mollendo.
Colonel Barbosa with 500 soldiers left
Mollendo towards Mejia in
search of the defenders, leaving the 3rd Chilean Line Infantry in
charge of the town, looting of homes quickly began. Colonel Barbosa
arrived in Mejia, destroying the locomotives and railtracks to prevent
reinforcements arriving from
Arequipa via rail. Colonel Barbosa
surprised the defenders at Ensenada, taking 20 prisoners. Upon his
return to Mollendo, he learned of the sacking of the town, punishing
some members of his command. This resulted in some desertions.
The town of
Mollendo is serviced by the small civilian Mollendo
Airport ICAO Code (SPDO)
The town is served by the standard gauge Southern Railway of Peru,
which connects with Cuzco and Puno.
Railway stations in Peru
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Mollendo.
Wikisource has the text of the 1905 New International Encyclopedia
(in Spanish) War in the Pacific Moll