1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Castellón de la Plana (province)

CASTELLÓN DE LA PLANA, a maritime province of eastern Spain, formed in 1833 of districts formerly included in Valencia, and bounded on the N. by Teruel and Tarragona, E. by the Mediterranean Sea, S. by Valencia, and W. by Teruel. Pop. (1900) 310,828; area, 2495 sq. m. The surface of the province is almost everywhere mountainous, and flat only near the coast and along some of the river valleys. Even on the coast the Atalayas de Alcalá and the Desierto de las Palmas form two well-defined though not lofty ridges. The Mijares or Millares is the principal river, flowing east-south-east from the highlands of Teruel, between the Sierras of Espina and Espadan towards the south, and the peak called Peña Golosa (5945 ft.) towards the north, until it reaches the sea a little south of the capital, also called Castellón de la Plana. The Monlleo, a left-hand tributary of the Mijares; the Bergantes, which flows inland to join the Guadalope in Teruel; the Cenia, which divides Castellón from Tarragona; and a variety of lesser streams, render the province abundantly fertile. No considerable inlet breaks the regularity of the coast-line, and there is no first-class harbour. The climate is cold and variable in the hilly districts, temperate in winter and very warm in summer in the lowlands. Agriculture, fruit-growing, and especially the cultivation of the vine and olive, employ the majority of the peasantry; stock-farming and sea-fishing are also of importance. Lead, zinc, iron and other ores have been discovered in the province; but in 1903, out of 129 mining concessions registered, only two were worked, and their output, lead and zinc, was quite insignificant. The local industries are mainly connected with fish-curing, paper, porcelain, woollens, cotton, silk, esparto, brandy and oils. Wine, oranges and oil are exported to foreign countries and other parts of Spain. The important Barcelona-Valencia railway skirts the coast, passing through the capital; and the Calatayúd-Sagunto line crosses the southern extremity of the province. Elsewhere the roads, which are generally indifferent, form the sole means of communication. Castellón (29,904), Villarreal (16,068), the port of Burriana (12,962), and Peñiscola (3142), a town of some historical interest, are described in separate articles. The other chief towns are Alcalá de Chisbert (6293), Almazora (7076), Benicarló (7251), Maella (7335), Onda (6595), Segorbe (7045), Vall de Uxó (8643), Villafamés (6708) and Vinaroz (8625).