The Santa Rosa’s Casona Historical Museum (Museo Histórico Casona de Santa Rosa) is the site of the battle against American filibuster William Walker. It consists of historical rooms which allow you to learn the relevant facts to the events occurred at the Hacienda of Santa Rosa and you can also enjoy a showroom about the Guanacaste Conservation Area (ACG in Spanish). All rooms are decorated with artwork that will guide you on your journey.
The museum is a very large structure, typical of the cattle ranches of Guanacaste, it also has a chapel (at one side of the chapel is located the room where slept the officiating priest who came to Mass every Sunday with neighbors from other farms), an old kitchen with the utensils used in the farms, a “Sabanero” room and a room with natural resources information. The museum also features guided tours, a small documentation center in the administrative area of the Park with scientific information, dining room, souvenir shop and a camping area with drinking water, tables, grills and garbage dumps.
Santa Rosa’s Casona History
Santa Rosa was one of the largest and oldest ranches in the country. Available data from the year 1663 refers to it as a place where agricultural and livestock activities developed through the years until 1966. It was not until 1863, when the owner Don Inocente Barrios Muñoz, registered Santa Rosa in the Public Registry under the name of “Finca Santa Rosa”. The original house was transformed in 1895, expanding and providing the design that remains until today. In 1919 the balcony was built and more recently the Ministry of Culture and the National Parks Service has been responsible for carrying out the necessary restoration work to keep the historic site.
Near the Casona are located the stone pens, built around 1700, there visitors can observe the “Bramadero” and southward along the immersion bath in which they bathe and took care of livestock.
A little history: in the nineteenth century, Nicaragua had run into political problems, a situation exploited by the North American William Walker, with slave trends, which governed under the doctrine of “Manifest Destiny” (the domain of powerful countries on the small ones). Walker offered his help in Nicaragua to resolve the problems and established in this country. His true intentions were to conquer the five provinces of Central America, “Five or None.”
In Costa Rica the President of the Republic Don Juan Rafael Mora Porras, knowing the intentions of Walker, declared war to Nicaragua on February 27th, 1856 and calls for Costa Ricans to join arms. The march began on March 4th from San José to Northern Border, commanded by the President, arriving to Liberia on March 12th where they join the battalion organized in that city (Moracia Battalion), under the command of Don José María Cañas. When the buccaneers heard about the movement that was happening in our country, they decided to send troops under the orders of colonel Schlessinger, which entered Costa Rica by the road that connected Liberia and Nicaragua, which also passed through the Hacienda of Santa Rosa, arriving on March 19th.
Costa Ricans started the journey to Santa Rosa too and on March 20th, armed with rifles, swords and bayonets at 4 p.m. began the attack, surrounding the buccaneers that had been located in the Casona and in the pens, and fourteen minutes later, the battle ended with the Costa Ricans triumph.
Address: Santa Rosa National Park, district: Santa Elena, canton: La Cruz, province: Guanacaste. Zone postal code: 51004.
GPS coordinates: 10.877594,-85.585858 (10°52’39.34″N, 85°35’9.09″W)
Schedule: From Monday to Sunday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Phone: + (506) 2666-5051 / 2666-5020