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The State of Amazonas is situated in the most north-western part of Brazil. It is covered almost entirely by the Amazon Rainforest. While the area was discovered and explored starting in the 16th century, it wasn't significantly populated by westerners until the 18th century. Various indigenous tribes have resided many centuries in the area.
The upper amazon Region was renamed Grand-Pará and Maranhao in 1772, and in 1822 when Brazil gained it's independence from Portugal the area became part of the Province of Pará. By September 5, 1822 the area gained it's own Provinceship under the name of Amazonas, with the city of Barra do Rio Negro (which was renamed Manaus in 1951) was designated as the capital of Amazonas.
During the 19th century the region received heavy immigration from the northeast to join in the lucrative rubber industry that was booming at the time. A similar migratory influx occured in the 1960s from neighboring countries and states of Brazil, who came to Amazonas seeking jobs in the new industrial sector.
The Public Archive of the State of Amazonas (Arquivo Público Estadual do Amazonas) was created in 1897 as a repository to collect and maintain records from state public organizations as well as historic state records. They have digitized some of their records, and in conjunction with the Cultural Center of the People of Amazonas (Centro Cultural dos Povos Da Amazônia) have provided some records for public use. These records can be accessed at http://www.povosdamazonia.am.gov.br/prg_128.jsp?secao=input.
Those interested in obtaining additional records for the state of Amazonas should try contacting the State of Amazonas Public Archive:
Arquivo Público Estadual do Amazonas
Rua: Bernardo Ramos, 265 - Manaus - AM - CEP. 69005-320
Tel: (0**92) 3232-3878
Additional resources are housed in the Arthur Reis Library (Biblioteca Arthur Reis). Restored in 2001 by the State Government, the library holds over 21,000 volumes of books, pamphlets, periodicals, and iconographic materials. The library can be contacted at:
Biblioteca Arthur Reis
Endereço: Av. Sete de Setembro, 444 – Centro Histórico.
Telefone: (92) 3637-6660