Garita de la Viga (Customs Gate on the Viga Canal)

Ernst Wardsworth Longfellow, a native of New England, was in Paris in 1865, where he was in contact with the open-air Barbizon schools. We do not know when he arrived in Mexico, where he left for us this painting of the Viga Canal, depicting the daily routine of the populace--almost all dressed in white-- busy transporting foodstuffs from Xochimilco and Chalco on their punts. The "Garitas" were the entry gates into the city, the place where customs duties were paid for bringing products into the city.
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