Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
San Miguel de Allende
San Miguel de Allende is a small city located in the state of Guanajuato, in Mexico's mountainous bajío region. The bajío (low place) is actually about 2000 m (7000 ft) above sea level, but it is a relatively flat region surrounded by mountains; it is a part of the Mexican altiplano. San Miguel serves as the administrative seat for the surrounding municipality of Allende, Guanajuato.
The town featured prominently in the Mexican War of Independence. General Ignacio Allende , one of San Miguel's native sons, was a leading player in the war against Spain for independence. Allende, captured in battle and beheaded, is a national hero. San Miguel el Grande renamed itself "San Miguel de Allende" in 1826 in honor of his actions.
By 1900, San Miguel de Allende was in danger of becoming a ghost town. Declared a national historic monument in 1926 by the Mexican government, development in the historic district is restricted in order to preserve the town's colonial character.
In the 1950s, San Miguel de Allende became a destination known for its beautiful colonial architecture and its thermal springs. After World War II San Miguel began to revive as a tourist attraction as many demobilized US GIs discovered that their education grants stretched further in Mexico at the US-accredited art school, the Instituto Allende, founded in 1950.
Famous worldwide for its mild climate, thermal springs and colonial era architecture, San Miguel de Allende has attracted a large community of foreign residents.
- Official site of San Miguel de Allende (in Spanish)
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