From Revista da Semana, December 1928. Click to enlarge
The Transformation of Rio’s Birthplace
The pictures on this page show two panoramic aspects of a part of Rio, taken from the same viewpoint, with a long interval, one in 1922 and another in 1928. Its publication aims to put the City’s Birthplace in focus. In the upper picture, one sees Morro do Castelo, already threatened by removal, but still almost intact, covering up Sugarloaf and Gloria, Santa Casa da Misericórdia and the Santa Luzia church. In this picture one of the palaces of the Centenarian Expo is under construction, today the Ministry of Agriculture.
One can also see the old historical mansion of the Old Jail, substituted today by the Assembly House, and the empty spot where the Palace of Justice was built. Of the Morro do Castelo, outlined by a broken white line, what remains is what one sees in the lower picture. And it is within that large area that Mr. Agache wants to do his urbanism projects, presented in Revista da Semana in 1921.
The picture below (bottom half) attests to the large transformation that took place in this area. From the historical hill, there are just two knolls, marked by two arrows. The view covers points that were then invisible, which we’ve already mentioned. The following places are marked: 1 – Niteroi. 2 – Ferry station. 3 – Ministry of Transport. 4 – The landfill of the Ponto de Calabouço at the cost of the removal of Morro do Castelo. 5 – The Mercado. 6 – The Department of Telegraphs, a historical home of governors and once the Imperial Palace. 7 – Tiradentes Palace (Chamber of Deputies). 8 – Palace of Justice. 9 – Ministry of Agriculture. 10 – Villegaignon Island. 11 – Santa Casa. 12 – São José Church. 13 – The leveled area of Morro do Castelo. 14 – Santa Luzia Church. 15 – Sugarloaf. 16 – YMCA, the first building built in the removal area. 17 – Glória knoll. 18 – The “skyscrapers” of Avenida Rio Branco.