Santa María Aztahuacan is one of the Iztapalapa original settlements. An ancient town, the Nahuatl name can be translated as “place of those with herons.” Famous for its street festivals, especial carnival, these draw interest from across the region.
Arguably, it’s an even more famous town for the recovery of super-ancient human remains. These were found in 1953 at the historic San Pedro Laundry. That’s a few minutes walk north from the town center. It’s another important local meeting place for the people of the neighborhood.
The broader neighborhood today also includes the giant former farmlands to the west. Shown in the map, today they’re residential neighborhoods. Their rather vast character reminds us of the town’s agricultural history.
The people of Santa María Aztahuacan built the town clock (shown above) between 1926 and 1930. Curiously, they paid for it through the sales of ducks from the town lagoon. It’s the civic center of the town, just south of the old and new churches. Those make up the historic religious center of the town. That history still reflects in the many town festivals for which residents will process through the streets. Often accompanied by elaborately costumed Chinelo and Charro dancers and performers, they’re a major part of the life and culture here.