Grecia History

Grecia Costa Rica has rich history

Grecia Costa Rica was founded over 167 years ago by locals who had a need to explore. The desire to look for new horizons, look for new fields to cultivate in a historically agricultural country and the colonizing spirit of Costa Rica that in those times was mostly virgin territory where some of the main motivations that families coming from Alajuela, San José and especially Heredia had to explore the region of “Potreros del Puas” –as it was called in those times-.

But it wasn’t until 7 years later, 160 year ago –April 27, 1838 to be precise- that Grecia was created as a town. Much happened between that and the construction of the actual town, but when it finally came the day when Grecia was populated and a community was formed, the wishes of the locals where to build a church where they could be true to their religious beliefs.

This wasn’t an easy task, but this is a clear example of the famous saying: Faith can move mountains. The economical difficulties and the lack of other resources impeded the termination of that wish. Instead of a proper church, a humble oratory was built in 1839 and a couple of other temples where built but destroyed by fire and an earthquake.

When those temples where destroyed and with the support of Bishop Bernardo Augusto Thiel and the Priest Carlos María Ulloa, the first steps towards the construction of the metal frame of the actual church where given. The construction was adjudicated to Dressé Aux Ateliers de la Societé de Couillet from Belgium.

Historical documents state that the first metallic plates arrived at the Port of Limon in October of 1892 and from there they were transported by train to Alajuela and with the help of bulls to the town of Grecia. The plates could not be used and where abandoned for two years due to the lack of money, but with the support of then President Rafael Yglesias Castro, the job was started and was finished by 1897 with the exception of the doors and windows, which were sent later by the Belgian company.

The church was finished and Grecia was on its way to become a great town, the great town that it is today and the story just told is an example of the nature that this town has, it is a strong willed and committed community. The thought back then was to convert Grecia into one of the best towns in Costa Rica, well, it looks like 160 years later this is true and they continue to be an example to follow.