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San José, Costa Rica

San José is the capital city of the nation of Costa Rica. San José is also the nation's largest city, and the capital of San José provence. San José is located in the center of the country at 10.0° N, 84.2° W; it is in a mountain plateau at an elevation of about 1170 meters (some 4,000 feet) above sea level. In 1997 the city had an estimated population of 329,154 people.

History San José was a small village of little importance until 1824. In that year Costa Rica's first elected Chief of State, liberal Juan Mora Fernandez[?], decided to move the government of Costa Rica from the old Spanish colonial capital of Cartago and make a fresh start with a new city. This was a time of much optimism with the newly independent nation of Central America, which Costa Rica at that time was a state within (see: History of Central America). The new capital of San José grew rapidly. Because of it's 19th century origin, San José has little of the Spanish colonial architecture common in most other Latin American capitals.

The University of Costa Rica[?] was established here in 1843.

In 1950 the city had a population of 86,900 people.

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