Salt Flat Museum - Corporación Museo del Salitre
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Directions to Salt Flat Museum
The Salt Flat Museum Corporation (CMS) was created by former inhabitants and their descendants of the nitrate offices, with a constituent assembly date on November 23, 1997. It was officially founded on November 11, 1999 according to Supreme Decree No. 912 of the Ministry of Justice, with Legal address in the city of Iquique, Tarapaca Region, Chile.
It has a heritage consisting of all movable and immovable property formed by the Humberstone and Santa Laura Saltpeter Offices, declared World Heritage by UNESCO. Both salt flats are in the Commune of Pozo Almonte.
The Humberstone and Santa Laura salt flat offices constitute a unique testimony of the Age of Salt flats, both in its industrial dimension and in relation to the conquest of the desert pampas. The nitrate offices not only speak of the economic success of a unique industry but also of a social, historical and cultural phenomenon recognizable even in the heirs of the pampina culture.
These nitrate offices demostrate the extraordinary capacity of man to conquer a hostile environment and extract his wealth from it, as the caliche deposits are located in the middle of the desert which forced thousands of people to reside in the middle of the Pampas generating an industry and an absolutely original way of life, which accounts for the adaptation and transformation of the desert landscape into an inhabited space.
The most recurring idea about the new institutional goal is to transform the corporation into a professional institution in the issue of nitrate heritage. In this way it is inferred that the future of the Corporation is to improve its strategic, administrative and operational actions in order to lead the protection process.
The Salt Flat Museum Corporation is a private nonprofit institution (Decree No. 912 of the Minister of Justice, 2000) whose mission is to protect, restore and manage the salt flat offices of Humberstone and Santa Laura, Inscribed in the list of World Heritage Sites, by UNESCO in 2005.
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