From upper left: Porto Alegre Public Market; Plant of Gasômetro; view of the city; Monument to the Azores before the building of the Administrative Center of the Rio Grande do Sul; panoramic view of the city from Guaíba River; Iberê Camargo Foundation; and the Monument to the Expeditionary at the Farroupilha Park.
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Porto Alegre was founded in 1769 by Manuel Jorge Gomes de Sepúlveda, who used the pseudonym José Marcelino de Figueiredo to hide his identity; but the official date is 1772 with the act signed by immigrants from the Azores, Portugal.
The vast majority of the population is of European descent.
The city lies on the eastern bank of the Guaíba River (also referred to as a lake), where five rivers converge to form the Lagoa dos Patos (Lagoon of the Ducks), a giant freshwater lagoon navigable by even the largest of ships.
This five-river junction has become an important alluvial port as well as a chief industrial and commercial center of Brazil.
On 24 July 1773, Porto Alegre became the capital city of the province, when the administration of Manuel Sepúlveda, who used the fictitious name or pseudonym José Marcelino de Figueiredo, to hide their identity, officially started.
In 1824, immigrants from all over the world started arriving, especially German, Italian, Spanish, Polish, Jewish, and Lebanese.This mosaic of diversity in appearance, ethnic origin, religions and languages is what makes Porto Alegre, nowadays with nearly 1.5 million inhabitants, a cosmopolitan and multicultural city. The capital city of Rio Grande do Sul is also the capital city of the Pampas region, the name given to the region of fauna and flora typical of the vast plains that dominate the landscape of the South of Brazil, part of Argentina and Uruguay.This is where the Gaúcho comes from, the historical figure of a brave warrior that fought legendary battles and wars in the quest to conquer the borders of the Kingdoms of Portugal and Spain in the 16th century.In recent years, Porto Alegre hosted the World Social Forum, an initiative of several non-government organizations.The city became famous for being the first city that implemented participatory budgeting.The 9th Assembly of the World Council of Churches was held in Porto Alegre in 2006.