Martes a Sabado y Feriados de 09:00 a 14:00 hs y de 17:00 a 22:00 hs – Domingos de 17:00 a 22:00hs
MADRE DE CIUDADES HALL (MOTHER OF CITIES HALL)
Santiago de Estero was given the name of “Madre de Ciudades” (Mother of Cities) because of the expeditions that founded the cities of Tucumán, Córdoba, Catamarca, La Rioja, Salta, and Jujuy, whichall departed from here. It was also here that the first Catholic Diocese with its first Cathedral was founded, as well as the first School of Higher Education, which marked the beginning of university studies in the country.
Historian Luis Alén Lascano claims that Santiago del Estero was born out of a foundational process, which began with the so-called entradas a Tucuman (entrances to Tucumán). There were three of them: the first one by Diego de Almagro in 1536, the second one by Diego de Rojas in 1543, who founded the short-lived fort of Medellín, and the third one by Juan Núñez del Prado, who founded the city El Barco in the mid-1550s, in a territory that is now part of the province of Tucumán.In 1551, this city had to be moved due to a jurisdiction conflict with Chile, and it was established in the territory of Salta. It remained there for some time, but, due to the pressure from an Indigenous tribe, the Calchaquíes, it had to berelocatedin Santiago del Estero’s territory, under the name of Ciudad del Barco del Nuevo Maestrazgo de Santiago del Estero. Yet, once again a conflict with Chile forced anew relocation; this time it was Don Francisco de Aguirre who seized the city and had it renamed Santiago del Estero in 1553.
The three settlements
Back in 1556, the city stood on the grounds of what is now Aguirre Park. It was laid out in a checkerboard pattern, occupying a small area of approximately seven hundred square meters.
Not much can be said about the early layout of the citysince there are no remnants whatsoever.
The main square was allegedly located on Alsina and Independencia Streets, and the Town Hall on Alsina and Olaechea Streets.
According to historian Andrés Figueroa, the main square and the Cathedral premises probably stood where the 25 de Mayotheatre stands today. According to Orestes Di Lullo, in 1670, a flood forced the Cathedral to be moved to where it currently stands.