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HISTORY OF BELIZE CITY

Belize City is the largest city of the Central American nation Belize. It is the capital of Belize District.

Unofficial estimates place the population of Belize City at 70,800 or more people. It is located at the mouth of the Belize River on the coast of the Caribbean Sea. Belize City is the nation's principal port and its financial and industrial hub. Several cruise ships drop anchor outside the port and are tended by local citizens. The city was almost entirely destroyed in 1961 when Hurricane Hattie swept ashore on Halloween. It was the capital of British Honduras (as Belize was then named) until the government was moved to the new capital of Belmopan in 1970.

Belize City's sister city in the United States is Ann Arbor, Michigan.

Re: HISTORY OF BELIZE CITY

Belize City was founded (originally as "Belize Town") in the mid-17th century by British lumber harvesters. It had previously been a small Mayan city called Holzuz.

Belize Town was ideal for the British as a central post because it was on the sea and a natural outlet for local rivers and creeks down which the British shipped logwood and mahogany. Belize Town also became the home of the thousands of African slaves brought in by the British to assist in the forest industry. It was the coordination site for the 1798 Battle of St. George's Caye, won by the British against would-be invaders, and the home of the local courts and government officials up to the 1970s. For this reason, historians often say that "the capital was the Colony", because the center of British control was here.

This sentiment remains true today. Even though people like Antonio Soberanis, George Price and Evan X Hyde all lobbied to take their movements outside, and other ethnic groups such as the Garifuna and Mestizos sprang up elsewhere in the country, people looked to Belize Town for guidance.

Belize Town slowly improved its infrastructure and has been the object of numerous infrastructural projects. Nevertheless, many of the streets built from colonial days are still small and congested, a majority of houses are still susceptible to fire and damage from hurricanes, and the city is always awaiting something calamitous to happen.

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