Orocovis, Puerto Rico

Orocovis, Puerto Rico

Heart of Puerto Rico

orocovis matrullas
Matrullas Lake

Foundation: Before Orocovis foundation with approximately 75 families (o-ro-KO-vis) was a ward (Barros) of Barranquitas. After the beginning of the last century the neighbors had made arrangements to found a town separate from the head of district. On May 25, 1825 the population empowered Don Juan de Rivera Santiago to request from the governing authorities approval to found a population center on the site of Barros. It is here where the pupulation of district bought fourteen acres of land from Doña Eulalia de Rivera, who then donated an additional acre, so that the inhabitants could erect the Mayorship and other municipal structures. But lamentably the location was not suitable for settlement because of the distance from the water sources that the settlers would need. For such reason the population asked the government for authorization to transfer the site to a place closer to water sources. The Governor, General Miguel de la Torre, granted the foundation of the new Barros municipality on November 10, 1825.

In 1838 the San Juan Bautista de Barros Parish was created, the same one was blessed and inaugurated October 29. In 1875 a great fire destroyed the church, the mayorship, the priest’s house and large number of houses of the population. In 1928 the Legislative Assembly of Puerto Rico approved a Joint Resolution by which the name of Barros was changed to Orocovis, name of the Taíno Chief Orocobix who governed this territory.

mapa orocovisLocation: Located in the area that is known as “The Heart of Puerto Rico“, it is bordered by: Ciales, Morovis and Corozal to the north; Juana Diaz, Villalba and Coamo to the south; Ciales to the west; and Barranquitas to the east.
Area: 163.8 sq km / 63.0 sq mi
Population: 23,844 (census 2000)
Population Density: 145.5 per sq km / 378.4 per sq mi
People are known as Orocoveños
Orocovis is also known as:
Corazón de Puerto Rico (Heart of Puerto Rico)
El Centro Geográfico de Puerto Rico (The Geographic Center of Puerto Rico)

Wards: Orocovis, Puerto Rico
barrios orocovis

Census 2000:
Population by Wards – Orocovis
Ala de la Piedra 418
Barros 1,862
Bauta Abajo 1,651
Bauta Arriba 908
Bermejales 570
Botijas 3,794
Cacaos 902
Collores 137
Damián Abajo 746
Damián Arriba 893
Gato 2,075
Mata de Cañas 487
Orocovis 3,373
Orocovis Town 851
Pellejas 436
Sabana 1,448
Saltos 3,293
Total 23,844

Source: Censo 2000

San Juan Bautista
San Juan Bautista Parish
PO Box 2114
Orocovis, Puerto Rico 00720-2114
(787) 867-2210
Founded: 1838
Patron’s Day: June 24
orocovis iglesia
Parroquia San Juan Bautista

Topography: Most of its terrain runs through the Central Mountain Range. The greater elevations are found in the south, between the limits of the municipality with Villalba and Coamo. Its highest elevation is the Mogote hill.
Hydrography: It is bathed by the Toro Negro, Sana Muertos, Orocovis, Matrullas, Bauta rivers and the Doña Juana, Palmar y Cacaos gorges among others. Its hydrographic system is made up of two dams or lakes: El Guineo Lake, which is formed in the channel of the Toro Negro river and the Matrullas Lake which is formed in the channel of the river of the same name, in the Bauta ward.
Economy: Agriculture: coffee, tobacco, fruits and cattle. It also has several small nutritional product industries and a electrical equipment factory.
Average Salary: $243.11 weekly (1998)

orocovis banderaFlag: La bandera de Orocovis está formada por cinco franjas verticales, dispuestas de la siguiente forma:

  • Two green at the ends
  • A blue one in the center divided by two narrower stripes

The green stripes represent the territories of Aibonito and Barranquitas and the two small white stripes represent those portions of territory yielded by the municipalities of Barranquitas and Morovis for the formation of the Barros municipality, in 1825, that is the present municipality of Orocovis. The central blue strip represents the regional dominion Chief Orocobix, previous to the colonization. On this stripe appears an oval with seventeen rays that represent the territorial demarcations. The sun, like the central body of our planetary system, was chosen to symbolize the position of this municipality as the geographic center of Puerto Rico.

orocovis escudoCoat Of Arms: The oval is symbol of the letter “o”, initial of the name of the town. In each quadrant appear representative elements of the town. In the left superior quadrant an Indian bust, symbol of the great “Chief Orocovix”, in silhouetted in gold on a silver-plated background. The Indian bust faces towards the star or sun that appears in the superior right quadrant, which is in gold on a blue background and represents the territorial municipality with its seventeen rays or demarcations. In the inferior quadrant a plantain plant is observed, silhouetted in gold on a silver-plated background. A bridge also silhouetted in gold on a blue background, above the river appears in the left inferior quadrant. The Indian represents the Taíno roots and the noble courage of its people. The sun is symbol of the municipality as the geographic center of the island of Puerto Rico. The plantain plant represents the main source of subsistence, the fecundity of the soil, the love for the land and the nature and work. The bridge is symbol of the hospitality, communication and friendship with the neighboring towns. It is also a main physical characteristic that distinguishes the municipality. The three tower gold crown above the shield, is symbol of the category that corresponds to the town.

The colors of the shield also have their meaning. The green represents the physical color of nature in the fields, it is symbol of the hope of progress and abundance that emanates of its soil. The blue symbolizes spiritual sincerity and nobility. The silver-plated and the gold are indicative of precious metals. They are symbols of the security and spiritual wealth that characterize the people. “Orocovis”, a town equipped with great human and spiritual values!

Orocovis public schools.

Name Level Telephone Address
ÁNGEL G. RIVERA Elementary (787) 867-5488 PO Box 1842
DAMIÁN ABAJO Elementary (787) 867-5466 PO Box 1842
NELIDA MELÉNDEZ MELÉNDEZ Elementary (787) 867-2840 PO Box 1605
ROMÁN DÍAZ AVILES Elementary (787) 867-0011 PO Box 1842
VISITACIÓN PAGÁN Elementary (787) 867-5383 PO Box 1693
GATO I Intermediate (787) 867-2410 PO Box 1693
ALBERTO MELÉNDEZ Secondary (787) 867-3353 PO Box 644
ANA DALILA BURGOS ORTIZ Secondary (787) 867-0106 PO Box 1841
BONIFACIO ALVARADO Secondary (787) 867-4633 PO Box 1202
BOTIJAS I Secondary
(787) 867-2260
PO Box 2115
BOTIJAS II Secondary (787) 867-0411 PO Box 136
MATRULLAS Secondary (787) 867-3966 PO Box 2115
SALTOS CABRAS Secondary (787) 867-4686 PO Box 1575
SANAMUERTOS Secondary (787) 867-1175 PO Box 2124
JOSÉ ROJAS CORTES High School (787) 867-2630 PO Box 2112

Hymn: By Celestino Avilés, hijo

Mi patria es una bella isla
y Orocovis su corazón
y a ese pueblo que me dio la vida
hoy le canto con todo mi amor.

Rodeado de verdes montañas
vigilado por un árbol de mangó
centinela y fiel testigo de su historia,
de su gente, de su honra y su valor

Fue en tu suelo que nació
el gran Cacique Orocobix
y muchos hombres que le han
dado tanta gloria a mi país.

Y es por eso que hoy
doy gracias al Señor
de nacer en este suelo…
¡Que orgulloso estoy!

De poder levantar tu escudo
y tu bandera y gritar a donde vaya…
¡Orocoveño soy!
¡Orocoveño soy!

Infant Theater Festival – April
Patron Festivities – June
Shrimp Festival – July
Craft Fair – September
Youth Festival – October

Places To Visit:
Indian Cave
Matrullas Lake
Orocovis Museum
Taíno Refuge

Distinguished Citizens:
Father Efraín Rodríguez Otero
Dr. Jenaro Collazo Collazo
Prof. Antonio Ortiz Hernández
Artesano Celestino Avilés
Rafael Santo Domingo
Pedro Orlando Torres

How to get to Orocovis from San Juan.

direction orocovis


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