The city of Mexico is the capital of Mexico, and the chief city in North America south of the Rio Grande. By rail it is 263 miles west of Vera Cruz, and 965 miles in a direct line southeast from El Paso. The city lies in a beautiful valley, 7,850 feet above sea level. The valley is bowl-shaped, and is surrounded by mountains. The federal district in which the city is built is about 4 times as large as the District of Columbia. But the city itself is from 15 to 20 square miles in area. It has a population of 475,000. The modern City of Mexico is built upon the ruins of another famous city of Mexico. You are standing here in the cathedral which is built on the spot where the Aztecs had their temple of worship. It was the Aztecs who first selected this as the site of their capital city. This powerful tribe settled on the marshy islands near the western shores of Lake Texcoco, in 1318. Here they began their city. Their temple they called Tenochtitlan. It was built on the ground that the cathedral now occupies. They later named the city Mexitli, after their god of war. During the reign of their 10 kings, they built a fine city, great highways, and cultivated the land near by. In 1521 Cortes, the Spanish explorer, defeated the Aztecs in a decisive battle, and slaughtered a large number of the people. From that date until 1821, the Spanish controlled the city, and the country. Then Mexico became a republic. The City of Mexico is probably the oldest city on the continent. It is interesting not only for its history, but for its beauty as well. It is naturally well located. This location has been improved, particularly by building broad avenues. The chief of these are shaded by rows of trees. Keystone ID: 10803 Note: All titles, descriptions, and location coordinates are from the original Keystone Slide documentation as supplied by the Keystone View Company. No text has been edited or changed.