The “Atlántida de Chiapas”, the flooded city in southern Mexico 


Despite the recent rains that have fallen in Chiapas, the drought that the state is facing continues to affect the level of the dams, which until this Wednesday, July 12, have not recovered. For this reason, the city of what is now called old Concordia, popularly known as “La Atlántida de Chiapas”, emerged once again. 

This town was flooded in 1974 by the waters of the Grijalva River to make the Belisario Domínguez dam, known as La Angostura. The settlers had to leave their lands behind at that time to look for new places to settle. 

The agreement with the state government, then administered by Dr. Manuel Velasco Suárez, was that they would leave the town passing the festivities of the Patron Saint, “El Señor de la Misericordia”, which was celebrated at the end of June, as reported by Romeo Gómez González, chronicler of the region. 

     “After the fair, cars arrived that the government put in to carry all our things here. The deadline that the government had set was for the last Our Lord of Mercy to come out and with that the water level began to rise,” he explained in interview. 

This city, where around six thousand inhabitants lived, had 11 streets, five sections and 27 blocks, with eight lots each: one for the square with 129 varas, half a block for the church, a rectory and 50 varas for the municipal buildings. 

The “Atlántida de Chiapas” reappears due to the drought 

Among the ruins, today appears the “Atlántida de Chiapas” park. You can see the towers of the church of La Misericordia and from above you can see in detail the layout of the city, the streets, the places where there were houses and the central park. There was also the cemetery, whose remains of the deceased were not able to relocate in time in their entirety in what is now Concordia. 

This year’s drought caused old Concordia to emerge on the mainland for the third time in its history, confirmed Don Pedro Ruiz Hernábdez, a fisherman from the municipality. “The third time it’s down. Look here it was dry, two days ago the water rose, it’s going to start sinking again,” he added. 

In 2017, the old Concordia managed to show part of its urban secrets, but still with a water coverage that made it impossible to clearly identify the town. Between 1997 and 1998, when Chiapas experienced a drought like the current one, the old Concordia emerged just as it does now, although a little more public infrastructure was still appreciated. 

As every year, the inhabitants attend old Concordia to celebrate their patron saint, “El Señor de la Misericordia”, and thus relive the good times in what is now called “La Atlántida de Chiapas”.  

Source: El Heraldo de Mexico