Santa Fe is a province of Argentina, located in the north of the country. Neighboring provinces are from the north clockwise Chaco, Corrientes, Entre Ríos, Buenos Aires, Córdoba and Santiago del Estero.
Its more important cities are Rosario (population 908,000), the capital Santa Fe (369,000), Rafaela (83,000), Villa Gobernador Gálvez (74,000), Venado Tuerto (69,000), Reconquista (66,000) and Santo Tomé (58,000). The illiteracy rate of the province is 3.7%.
* 1 History
* 2 Geography and climate
* 3 Economy
The aboriginal tribes who inhabited this region were the Tobas, Timbúes, Mocovíes, Pilagás, Guaycurúes and Guaraníes. They were nomadic, lived from hunting, fishing and fruit recollection.
The first European settlement was established in 1527, at the confluence of the Paraná and Carcarañá rivers, when Sebastián Gaboto, on his way to the north, founded a fort named Sancti Spiritus, which was destroyed two years later by the natives.
In 1573 Juan de Garay founded the city of Santa Fe in the surroundings of present town Cayastá, but the city was moved in 1651 and 1660 to its present location.
In 1812 the lawyer and general Manuel Belgrano created and displayed for the first time the Argentine flag on the banks of the Paraná River, at Rosario (by that time a small village), 160 km south of Santa Fe.
In 1815, while Alvear's central government felt due to Ignacio Álvarez Thomas' rebellion (at that time commander of an army sent to Santa Fe against Artigas), Francisco Candioti, the local militia chief, took over, peacefully, of government, thus starting the era of Santa Fe as an autonomous province. This period was short lived, since that same year Candioti died and central government reestablished the dependent government. However, in 1816, the caudillos Mariano Vera and Estanislao López deposed the governor delegate and proclaimed the sovereignty of the province and its membership into Artigas's Free Peoples League (Liga de Pueblos Libres).
López drew, in 1818, a provincial constitution of a strongly conservative flavour, after rejecting a project proposed by a provincial assembly; Santa Fe was the first province to have its constitution. During the civil strifes of 1820, Santa Fe troops were decisive in the defeat of Buenos Aires' centralist army. So, in time, López gradually became the Federation's Patriarch, establishing himself as the central figure of the Federal Party until his death in 1838.
After López's death it was his secretary and right hand, José María Cullen the one elected governor. However, being Cullen a potential rival of Buenos Aires governor and Confederation's Foreign Affairs Representative, Juan Manuel de Rosas, he sook and got Cullen's capture and execution, naming pro-Rosas Juan Pablo López as governor. The new governor mantained in power, alterning with Pascual Echagüe, until the province invasion by Justo José de Urquiza's Great Army in 1851, and during his term the province adopted a new constitution in 1841.
After the organization of the nation, the province entered an era of peace and prosperity; in 1872 the railways already connected many points of the province, as well as the telegraph lines, and in 1889 the Universidad de Santa Fe was founded.
The political hegemony of the conservative groups was challenged by the new ideas brought by the European immigrants gave birth to the Unión Cívica Radical (UCR) and the Partido Demócrata Progresista (PDP), and the creation of the Federación Agraria Argentina ("Argentine Agrarian Federation"). These two parties had many strong electoral contests with the province's conservative parties.
After the Electoral Reform of Roque Sáenz Peña in 1912, the UCR reached the government and stayed until the coup of 1930. During this time, more precisely in 1919, The Universidad Nacional del Litoral was founded. In 1932 it was the PDP who got the governor's seat.
The province importance kept growing, as a major agricultural producer, with Rosario as one of the most important ports of Argentina.
Geography and climate
Most of the province consists of green flatlands, part of the humid Pampas, bordering to the north with the Gran Chaco region. There are low sierras to the west. The north has higher temperatures with an annual average of 21 °C and precipitations of up to 1,100 mm in the east, decreasing towards the west, where there is a distinctive dry season during the winter. The south presents lower temperatures, and slightly less precipitations.
The main river, and connection to open sea through the Río de la Plata is the Paraná River. There are also other tributaries to the Paraná including the Salado del Norte, the Carcarañá and the Arroyo del Medio. The plain lands tend to be flooded after heavy rains due to the growth of the Paraná and Salado rivers. In 2003 a rapid rise of the Salado produced a catastrophic flood of the capital and many communities in the north-center of the province, prompting the evacuation of no less than 100,000 people and major economic losses.
Santa Fe's economy is one of the most important of the country. Twenty-one percent of the cultivated lands of Argentina are in Santa Fe, whose main crops are soybean (main national producer), sunflower, maize, wheat and rice. In smaller scale strawberry, honey and derivatives (300,000 beehives), wood and cotton are produced.
The National Flag Memorial, in Rosario.
The National Flag Memorial, in Rosario.
The green grass of the province is ideal for the 6.5 million heads of cattle (20% of national stock), which is not only source of meat but of 2,600 million of litres of milk per year (40% of the national production), which is processed by over 5,000 dairies.
The ports between Rosario and San Lorenzo are departure points for the export of the production of the Santa Fe and many other provinces; through them leave 65% of the Argentine cereal and 55% of the country's exports. In 2004, Santa Fe's exports (7,170 million USD) accounted for 21% of the national total. Between 2001 and 2004 they increased 65.2%. Derivates of soybean, flours and vegetable oils comprised about 2,000 million USD and over 7.6 million tonnes.  In 2005 the ports of southern Santa Fe shipped 60% of the grains, 93% of the agricultural subproducts and 85% of the vegetable oils exported by Argentina. 
The industry of Santa Fe represents 30% of its production and is also among the top in Argentina. Mills that produce different flours and oils, beer, and other food industries, leather and textiles, hydrocarbon refineries, steel (1 million tonnes a year) and metals production, industrial and agricultural machines, car industry and others.
Tourism is not an important activity in spite of the wide range of hotels and restaurants. Rosario, home to the National Flag Memorial (Monumento Nacional a la Bandera) and a number of museums, receives a number of visitors from Argentina. The replica of the Sancti Spiritus Fort, the ruins of Cayastá and the city of Santa Fe are also common destinations.
Información provista por http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Santa_Fe_Province