Engenho São Jorge dos Erasmos
The Engenho São Jorge dos Erasmos located in Santos is the Base Avançada de Pesquisa, Cultura e Extensão da Pró-Reitoria de Cultura e Extensão Universitária da USP, which includes an archaeological site and natural park, opened to visits and scientific research; an extensive educational program with free guided tours aimed at different audiences; and a calendar of free educational and cultural events for all ages.
The remains of the Engenho do Governador, built by Martim Afonso de Sousa, in 1534, were donated to the University of São Paulo in 1958 and protected as a national monument by IPHAN in 1963, and later by CONDEPHAAT and CONDEPASA. In 2009, the Base’s building was opened, containing an amphitheater, an exhibition area, classrooms and research rooms, library and administrative offices. With the foundation of the Vila de São Vicente in 1532, Martim Afonso stimulated the sugar production in the region, in order to set the portuguese territory. Among the sugar-producing units, the highlight was the once called Engenho do Governador, subsequently called”of Erasmos”, when acquired by the family of Erasmo Schetz de Antuérpia.
Qualified as an open air museum, the ruins are the legacy of a period still little known in the history of Brazil. Its maintenance witness the essence of a colonization forged in the chains of slavery and acculturation of the natives. Its scientific activities includes an extensive research on societies and economies based on sugar production and the preparation of history, archeology and biology teaching materials. Currently, the Engenho receives about eight thousand visitors every year. The visitation policy aims at the relationship bertween the monument and the community, seeking the identification and valuation of the heritage by visitors.
Financed by BNDES, walkways and an observation tower are being built to expand the visits. The federal organ also sponsors the elaboration of sound and light shows, due to start in the end of 2015, as well as inventories for the historical and natural heritages of Santos.
To access Ruínas Engenho São Jorge dos Erasmos, click here.
Por Pró-Reitoria de Cultura e Extensão Universitária