Arica Province (Peru)

The Province of Arica was a historical territorial division of Peru, which existed between 1823 and 1883. It was populated by pre-Hispanic peoples for a long period of time before Spanish colonisation in the early 16th century saw the transformation of a small town into a thriving port.[1] Trade in both gold and silver was facilitated through Arica after the precious metals were first extracted from the Potosí silver mines of Bolivia. Following the War of the Pacific, the province was transferred to Chile and became an official Chilean territory in 1929.[2]

Arica Province
Provincia de Arica
Province of Peru
Flag of Arica Province
Departamento moquegua 1865.JPG
Arica Province (pink) within Moquegua in 1865
DemonymAriqueño, a
Historical eraWar of the Pacific aftermath
• Established
20 October 1883
31 October 1883
3 June 1929
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Tacna Department
Arica Province
Today part ofChile


The department was located in southern Peru, near the Pacific Ocean. It was limited to the north by the Tacna Province, in the south by the Tarapacá Department, on the east by Bolivia, and on the west by the Pacific Ocean.

Arica was established in 1823, as part of the Department of Arequipa.[3] In 1828, the capital city of the province was changed from Arica to Tacna. In 1837, the province joined the established Department Litoral with capital at Tacna. In 1853, the province was moved to the newly established Department of Moquegua, along with the provinces of Moquegua, Tacna and Tarapacá. In 1855, the province was divided into two, forming the provinces of Tacna and Arica.

In 1868, the city of Arica was almost completely destroyed during an earthquake that also affected the areas north of the city, as well neighboring Bolivia and Chile.

In 1875, Arica was transferred to the newly established Department of Tacna, along with the provinces of Tacna and Tarata. In 1875, the province itself was divided into six districts: Arica, Belén, Codpa, Livilcar, Lluta, and Socoroma. In the 1883 Treaty of Ancón Arica and Tacna provinces were transferred to Chilean control for ten years, and then were to have been subject to a plebiscite, one that was never held.[4][5] De facto, that was the end of the Peruvian province of Arica, although the dispute was not settled until the 1929 Treaty of Lima.[6]

Notable peopleEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ De facto.
  2. ^ De jure.


  1. ^ "Arica History" (Web page). Lonely Planet. 2011. Retrieved 27 March 2012.
  2. ^ "ARICA". Interpatagonia. Retrieved 27 March 2012.
  3. ^ Dicionario geográfico peruano y almanaque de "La Crónica" para 1918. Lima, Peru: N. Moral. 1918. p. 62. OCLC 26142406.
  4. ^ Egaña, Rafael (1900) The Tacna and Arica question. Historical antecedents.--Diplomatic action. Present state of the affair (translated from the Spanish edition by Edwin C. Reed) Barcelona Printing Office, Santiago, Chile, OCLC 19301902
  5. ^ "Chili and Peru. A money offer for Provinces". The Daily Telegraph. No. 5144. New South Wales, Australia. 16 December 1895. p. 5. Retrieved 8 December 2018 – via National Library of Australia. , ...Senor de Pierola, the President of the Republic of Peru, has offered Chili the sum of 10,000,000 piastres (about £790,000) for the provinces of Tacna and Arica. These provinces were ceded by Peru to Chili for ten years (1883-93), at the end of which period a plebiscite was to decide their definite nationality. Owing to the troubles in Peru last year this decision was deferred...
  6. ^ Jane, Lionel Cecil (1930) "The question of Tacna-Arica ..." Transactions of the Grotius Society 15: pp. 93–119

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