Granada, the earliest Spanish settlement in Nicaragua and the oldest continuously inhabited city in Central America. Located on the western end of Lake Nicaragua, Granada was founded in 1524 by Francisco Hernández de Córdoba. Built on the site of the ancient Indian town of Jaltepa, it became an important trading center and a major port for the new colony. Spanish seagoing ships sailed directly to Granada until an earthquake created shallows in the San Juan River, which connects Lake Nicaragua with the Atlantic coast. Access to the sea also made Granada a target for buccaneers in the seventeenth century. After independence it became the center of the Conservative Party. Followers of the opposition Liberal Party, led by the American filibuster William Walker, burned the city in 1856. Rebuilt, Granada has maintained its colonial appearance. It is the principal port on the lake and serves as the terminus for the railroad to Corinto. It is currently the third-largest city in the country, after Managua and León. Its estimated population is 105,171 (2005).
Alejandro Barbarena Pérez, Granada, Nicaragua (1971).
Arellano, Jorge Eduardo. Granada: Aldea señorial en el tiempo. Managua: Dirección General de Patrimonio y Museos, Instituto Nicaragüense de Cultura: Organización de Estados Americanos, 1997.
Cruz S., Arturo J. Nicaragua's Conservative Republic, 1858–1893. New York: Palgrave, 2002.
Velázquez P, José Luis. La formación del Estado en Nicaragua, 1860–1930. Managua: Fondo Editorial, Banco Central de Nicaragua, 1992.
David L. Jickling