Notes on the Geography of Brazil: Manaus 30 Years Later: Photo 5
In 1995, Xerox paid for the refurbishment of the Praça São Sebastião, in front of the theater. The paving isn't new, however: it's always been wavy, symbolizing the confluence of the Rio Negro with the gray-white Amazon. The Monumento a Abertura dos Portos--the monument to the opening of the port--recalls that great event in 1866, when the Amazon was opened to ships of foreign nations. Until then, outsiders like the Yankees had pushed in vain for entry. No less than Matthew Fontaine Maury had made it a personal crusade. America's ports were as close to the Amazon as Brazil's, he argued--and it's true, if you measure from Savannah and Santos.
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