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Salto, São Paulo State (Brazil)

Last modified: 2013-02-02 by ian macdonald
Keywords: sao paulo | salto | triband: vertical (blue | white | blue) |
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SP (Brazil)] image by Dirk Schönberger, 22 January 2013
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About the Flag of Salto

The flag of Salto is prescribed by Municipal Law No. 585 of 28 December 1968. The flag is vertically divided Royal blue-white-Royal blue, with the municipal coat of arms in the middle. The dimensions of the flag are 14 units x 20 units. The central stripe is 7 units in width [slightly wider than the blue ones]. The height of the coat of arms is 6.5 units. The meaning of the colors is the same as for the arms. - Municipal website

The municipality of Salto (105,569 inhabitants in 2010; 13,426 ha) is located 100 km of São Paulo. Salto was granted the title of Tourist's Resort by State Law No. 10,360 of 2 September 1999. Salto is named for waterfalls ("salto") of river Tietê, near which the town was originally established. Oddly enough, the neighbouring town of Itu is also named for the Tupi-Guarani word meaning "waterfalls", and Salto was once named Salto de Ytu.

Salto belonged in the late 17th century to Sítio Cachoeira (Waterfall's Site), a part of the Captaincy of São Vicente acquired by Captain Antônio Vieira Tavares, the nephew of the pioneer Raposo Tavares*, and his wife Maria Leite. The captain built a chapel, where the first mass was celebrated on 16 June 1698, which is considered as the day of foundation of Salto. In 1700, the couple bequeathed his land, slaves and Indians to the chapel of Our Lady of Monte Serrat. For long, the nearby village would remain a borough of the town of Itu. In the first half of the 19th century, Salto de Ytu was part of the sugar quadrilateral limited by Mogi-Guaçu, Jundiaí, Sorocaba and Piracicaba, then the main region of sugar production in São Paulo Province. The Itu Railway Co. established a railway station in Salto in 1873. The same year, José Galvão da França Pacheco built the "Júpiter" cloth mill on the right bank of river Tietê. The Republican politician Francisco Fernando de Barros Júnior, known as the "Father of Salto", set up its own cloth mill nearby in 1882. José P. Tibiriçá inaugurated a socket factory in 1885 while Octaviano Pereira Mendes founded the "Monte Serrat" cloth mill in 1887. Melchert & Cia, the first paper mill in South America, was established on the left bank of the Tietê in 1889. Most of the cloth workers were Italian immigrants; the two pioneer mills eventually merged to form the "Società per l ´Esportazione e per l'Industria Italo-Americana", renamed in 1919 "Brasital", a company that would be for years the main employer of the town and established worker's estates. Salto was then known as the "Little Paulista Manchester".

The municipality of Salto de Itu was established in 1889 and renamed Salto in 1917. In the 1950s, a second wave of industrialization reached the town, when the Eucatex, Emas, Picchi and Sivat companies offered some 3,500 jobs. Business parks were created in the 1970s. Today, more than 98% of the inhabitants of the municipality live in urban areas.

*António Raposo Tavares (1598-1658), the "legendary pioneer", led his first expedition in 1628, which allowed the annexation of the current States of Paraná and Santa Catarina to Portugal. He led a second expedition in 1636, which allowed the annexation of the current state of Rio Grande do Sul. His last and most famous expedition trailed in 1648 from São Paulo to Belém. Out of the 1,200 members of the expedition, only 60 reached Belém, including Tavares himself.

Photos of the flag

The coat of arms of Salto, designed by Lauro Ribeiro Escobar, is prescribed by Municipal Law No. 550 of 28 December 1967. The coat of arms is "An Iberic shield, Royal azure with a fleur-de-lis surmounted with two swallows" volant affronty in base a fess wavy argent, a bordure compony gules and or of eight pieces counter-charged with four scallops or and four six-pointed stars gules. THe shield surmounted with an eight-towered mural crown argent ports gules. The shield supported dexter by a branch of coffee leaved and fructed proper and sinister by a sugarcane leaved the two proper. Beneath the shield a scroll azure inscribed with the motto 'LABOR OMNIA VINCIT' in letters argent."

The Iberic shield, used in Portugal at the time of discovery of Brazil, evokes the early colonizers and builders of the country. Royal azure is a symbol of justice, beauty, sweetness, vigilance, serenity, nobleness, constancy, incorruptible firmness, dignity, zeal and loyalty, which are the features of the administrators of the municipality. Azure also represents the natural beauty of the region. The fleur-de-lis is the emblem of Our Lady of Monte Serrat, the municipality's patron saint; it also represents the first chapel built by Captain Antônio Vieira Tavares, considered as the cradle of Salto. The swallows are a symbol of attachment to the land and equality among the citizens; the birds are also a symbol of Salto deeply rooted in the local traditions. The fess wavy represents river Tietê, along which Salto was built; it also represents the water resources of the municipality, including river Jundiaí and several rivers and brooks. Argent is a symbol of felicity, friendship, integrity, purity, temperance, truth, frankness and beauty, representing the atmosphere of harmony and understanding that reigns in the municipality. Argent also represents the natural beauty of the region. The shells ("vieiras") or an gules comes from the [canting] arms of the Vieira family, while the stars gules on or comes from the arms of the Tavares family. The shell is a symbol of patience and satisfaction. The star is a symbol of safe guidance, expected success, aspiration to highness and sublime acts, and light through the night. Or is a symbol of splendour, wealth, generosity, nobleness, glory, power, force, faith, prosperity, sovereignty and rule. Gules is a symbol of audacity, valour, valiance, intrepidity, nobleness, magnanimity and honour. The eight-towered mural crown is a symbol of municipal emancipation. The open ports are a symbol of hospitality. Gules is here a symbol of Law and Justice, meaning "Justice will be found between these ports". The branch of coffee and the sugarcane stands for the fertility of the soil; they were the main crops of the municipality and significantly contributed to its development. The motto, "Work Conquers Everything" was adopted in 1931, when Salto adopted its first emblem. - Municipal website
Ivan Sache, 23 January 2013