Municipalities / Juana Díaz
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San Ramón Nonato church
Juana Díaz is located in southern Puerto Rico. The municipality measures 156.3 square kilometers (60.64 square miles). It is known as "the mabee towntown, founding: A group of vecinos that wanted to found a town had to grant a power of attorney to one or more other vecinos to represent them before the governor and viceroy. This person could authorize the founding of the town and the establishment of a parish. The grantors of the power of attorney had to be a majority in the given territory and more than ten in number. Once the case had been made, the governor appointed a capitán poblador or settlement official to represent the vecinos and one or more delegates, who usually lived in nearby cabildos vecinos to receive the necessary documentation. Proof was required that the settlement was so far from a church that it was very difficult for the settlers to partake of sacraments and municipal services. In general, proof was provided of the absence or bad condition of roads and bridges. If the petition was approved, it was required that the vecinos mark off the new municipality and build public works such as a church, a parish house, a government house (Casa del Rey), a slaughterhouse, and a cemetery, and to set aside land for the town square or plaza and the commons (ejidos). The vecinos were expected to cover the cost of building these works by levying special assessments. Usually one of the land owners donated some land for the founding. Once the requirements had been met, the governor authorized the founding of the town and the parish, and he appointed a Lieutenant at War who usually was the same capitán poblador.," "the city of the Jacaguas River," the "city of the Three Kings," and the "Bethlehem of Puerto Rico." According to the 2000 census, there are 50,531 juanadinos, living in Amuelas, Callabo, Capitanejo, Cintrona, Collores, Emajagual, Guayabal, Jacaguas, Juana Díaz Pueblo, Lomas, Río Cañas Abajo, Río Cañas Arriba, Sabana Llana, and Tijeras wards. This municipality is where the centuries-old tradition of Three Kings Day is celebrated with the most enthusiasm. The famous kings have traveled to Rome to meet Pope John Paul II. The patron saint is Saint Raymond Nonnatus, whose day is celebrated on August 31.

At present, Juana Díaz produces fine quality marble. There are four quarries from where marble tile and chips for terrazo are extracted. The large-scale sugar plantations of the past are now used for fruit, especially mangos, avocados, beans, and produce. There is also some cattle farming.


Juana Díaz is located on the south coast of the island, and is bordered by Ponce to the west; Jayuya, Villalba and Ciales to the north; Coamo and Santa Isabel to the east; and the Caribbean sea to the south. The geographical region is part of the southern coastal plains and semi-arid southern hills, situated on a geological fault. There is very little rain. Topographical features include valleys, plains, and coasts.

This municipality is irrigated by the Descalabrado, Cañas, Guayo, and Jacaguas rivers. A dam was constructed on the Jacaguas River to create the Guayabal reservoir, between Juana Díaz and Villalba. The main tributary of the Jacaguas is the Toa Vaca River (Villalba), on which a dam has also been built. The Cañas River is born in Guayabal ward at an elevation of 1,246 feet (380 meters) above sea level, runs through the municipality, and empties into the sea at Pastillo Point. The Descalabrado River marks the border with Santa Isabel and Coamo. The Guayo River springs from Collores ward. There are other water bodies including Ponceña and La Torre lakes and brooks such as Indalecia and Chiquita. The south coast of the municipality extends from the Descalabrado River mouth of the mouth of the Jacaguas River.

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