Travel to Argentina. Where there is Tierra Del Fuego and why so is called?Tierra Del Fuego - the archipelago consisting of 11 big and more than 30 small islands, separated from South America by Magellan`s passage. It is one of the solitudes on Earth (3,4 persons on 1 sq.km). From time immemorial there natives who, despite cold, were always absolutely nude and barefoot lived. Up to now did not live any representative of these people. On the archipelago there is the most southern city on Earth - Ushuaya.
South America comes to an end in the south with Tierra Del Fuego with Cape Horn in the extremity - it is a fact of common knowledge. But at the same time many consider that everything listed represents a single whole, that is both Tierra Del Fuego, and Cape Horn are on the mainland.
Frankly speaking, and in my representations it quite so also was. As I was surprised when our fifteen-deck cruise liner joking bypassed around a small island the Horn with a rocky ledge on South side which was the notorious cape of the same name.
I had to reconcile also to the fact that Tierra Del Fuego was the huge archipelago consisting of 11 big and more than 30 small islands, one of which is the island the Horn. From South side Tierra Del Fuego is separated from Antarctica by the huge passage called in honor of his pioneer, the most great seafarer and at the same time the cruelest pirate sir Francis Drake, and from the continent they are separated by other passage which bears a name of one more great pioneer - Ferdinand Magellan. Both of these passages connect Quiet and Atlantic oceans. Drake managed to prove that Tierra Del Fuego is the archipelago and it is separated from the Southern continent. Since then it on all world maps is also presented in the form of group of islands.
The name Tierra Del Fuego to everything, islands, not familiar with history of its assignment, seeming to not quite usual, was given by the same Magellan.
When the squadron from five ships in 1520 went by the largest island of the archipelago, on the earth the bright fires which are followed by a dense black smoke burned. Magellan, having taken these fires for eruptions of volcanoes, called this earth of Tyerr - del - Fuego that in translation into Russian and is meant by Tierra Del Fuego. So this name was also assigned to islands for all remained times.
Actually the natives inhabiting islands at the sight of strangers began to throw green branches into big fires at which they were heated to warn tribespeople about danger.
Scientists proved that people lodged in this territory long before opening by her Magellan. During the millennia there lived Indian tribes which led the most primitive life. Despite severe climatic conditions (in the winter there temperature reduces to zero degrees and below), they did not wear any clothes and were absolutely barefoot. In the coldest time they could throw over themselves fur skins of sea animals whom they got for livelihood. Besides fish, them and caught entered their poor diet.
In those days when people lodged in this territory, it made a whole with the continent. The passage was formed much later. The tribes living in the southern part of the continent were cut off from other population of the continent. Their development practically stopped, they had to spend all forces for production of livelihood and fuel for maintenance of fire without which in those severe conditions they could not survive in general.
The glaciers covering the earth in the period of the last great freezing left, having left the hilly district with numerous ravines. The sea coast which is strongly cut up on East side on western and southern has a set of beaches.
Now the most part of the territory of Tierra Del Fuego is located in Argentina while part of east islands including the Horn, belongs to Chile.
The first of Europeans on islands British lodged, but soon they were pressed by the Spaniards who built the first city on the archipelago, called Ushuaya that in translation from one of Indian dialects designates “the city in the depth of a bay“.
Long time these far lands were necessary to nobody, and Indian tribes, basic of which were Yagan and Selkov, continued to live on the customs. In 1834 Tierra Del Fuego during the round-the-world travel by the ship “Beagle“ was visited by Ch. Darwin. Future author of the theory of evolution very negatively spoke of local Indians. According to him, “they so differed from Europeans that even comparison of wild animals with house will not help to describe these distinctions“.
Having fully shown the racist views, Darwin called Indians of Tierra Del Fuego “wild dogs“, having declared at the same time that they have no spiritual life. He did not take into account that at them was, let and at the primitive level, own religion. Indians worshipped the Supreme deity Vatainev and to a great number of other gods with whom the shamans asking from them good weather or successful fishing could communicate. Everything was there, as well as in other primitive communities, and shamans as the most authoritative members of the tribe, had the big power. For Europeans also customs of inhabitants of Tierra Del Fuego seemed strange in those days. So, they painted the bodies with coal, dressed up dogs and danced with masks of spirits in hands.
Soon “gold-rush“ interfered with development of Tierra Del Fuego. Rumors about availability of gold on the archipelago, similar to what was found on Alaska were confirmed. Julius Popper, the Romanian engineer, received in Buenos - to Ayresa permission to its production and, heading crew from 35 adventurers, went to the gulf San - Sebastian where soon began to get to kilogram and more gold in days. Popper was called “the fiery dictator“, began to mint gold coins with own image and tried to take in hand all territory of the archipelago.
For a start Popper decided to destroy all Indians of Tierra Del Fuego. He paid for each scalp removed from the head of the killed native. Soon, having learned about the excesses which are created in Popper`s company, the government of Argentina was forced to close it. By this time also the gold deposit was exhausted. Popper was a prototype of the engineer Garin from the famous novel of Alexey Tolstoy. The final at both dictators was identical too: both had to live the days in poverty on the islands.
To the tourists getting to those places suggest to visit Popper`s mines which reached up to now in a good shape.
In 1960 the government of Argentina founded national park Tierra Del Fuego. It is the most South and only park with the sea coast from all national parks in the world.
Now Tierra Del Fuego represents one of the solitudes on Earth. Though there is the most southern city on the planet - Ushuaya, and 3 more towns, honor all population of the archipelago occupying the huge space in 74 thousand sq.km, makes 250 thousand people, or 3,4 persons on 1 sq.km.