1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Iquitos (city)
IQUITOS, a city and river port of Peru, and capital of the great inland department of Loreto, on the left bank of the upper Amazon near the mouth of the Rio Nanay, 87 m. below the mouth of the Ucayali and 930 m. from Puerto Bermudez. The geographical position of Iquitos is 3° 44′ S., 73° W. Pop. of the city (1906, est.), 6000; of the district (1906, est.), 12,000. Iquitos stands about 348 ft. above sea-level, on the low wooded banks of the river opposite some islands of the same name, and has a warm but healthful climate (mean annual temperature, about 75° F.). The city consists of two pueblos, the larger of which is occupied by Indians and half-breeds, the descendants of the Iquitos tribe from whom the city takes its name. The opening of the Amazon to navigation, and the subsequent arrival of foreign ocean-going vessels at Iquitos, added immensely to the importance of the city, and made it the commercial entrepôt of eastern Peru. In 1908 three lines of ocean-going steamers were making regular voyages up the Amazon to Iquitos (about 2500 m.). The city has a large import and export trade for an immense region watered by the Marañon, Huallaga, Ucayali and other large Amazonian rivers navigated from Iquitos by lines of small boats. Iquitos was put in wireless telegraphic communication with Puerto Bermudez on the 8th of July 1908, whence a land line runs across the Andes to Lima. Besides machine shops and shipbuilding facilities, the important industries are the weaving of hats and hammocks, and the preparation of salt fish; and there is a considerable export of rubber and straw hats. Tobacco is produced in the vicinity and sent to other parts of the Montaña region. Iquitos dates officially from 1863, when it had a population of 431, though there had been a white settlement there for more than half a century.