TALCAHUANO, or Talcaguano, a seaport of the province of Concepcion, Chile, on the bay of Concepcion, 8 m.
Coquimbo was swept by a tidal wave in 1849, and Concepcion and Talcahuano were similarly destroyed in 1835.
South-west of Concepcion, which partially encloses the Bay of Arauco and is well cultivated; and Quiriquina, lying off the port of Talcahuano in the entrance to Concepcion bay.
There are some small harbours for coasting vessels of light draught along the coast of central Chile, usually at the partially obstructed mouths of the larger rivers, as San Antonio near the mouth of the Maipo, Constitucion at the mouth of the Maule, and Llico on the outlet of Lake Vichuquen, but there is no harbour of importance until Concepcion (or Talcahuano) Bay is reached.
There are three harbours on this bay, El Tome, Penco and Talcahuano (q.v.), the last being the largest and best-protected port on the inhabited part of the Chilean coast.
There is a military port at Talcahuano, in Concepcion Bay, strongly fortified, and provided with arsenal and repair shops, a large dry dock and a patent slip. The naval school, which occupies one of the noteworthy edifices of Valparaiso, is attended by 90 cadets and is noted for the thoroughness of its instruction.
Believing that he had now secured the support of the majority in congress on behalf of any measures he decided to put forward, the new president initiated a policy of heavy expenditure on public works, the building of schools, and the strengthening of the naval and military forces of the republic. Contracts were given out to the value of 6,000,000 for the construction of railways in the southern districts; some 10,000,000 dollars were expended in the erection of schools and colleges; three cruisers and two sea-going torpedo boats were added to the squadron; the construction of the naval port at Talcahuano was actively pushed forward; new armament was purchased for the infantry and artillery branches of the army, and heavy guns were acquired for the purpose of permanently and strongly fortifying the neighbourhoods of Valparaiso, Talcahuano and Iquique.