Time Line



salt stagnation in the Crown of Castile


in Galicia there were twenty alfolíes (salt warehouses) that were not enough to supply the kingdom with salt.


possible marking out of O Ulló by Portuguese experts with a view to the salt works.


The Marnotos

The men who worked in salline pans were called marnotos, marnoteiros, marlotos or salineiros. The shovel loaders completed the intermediate process between the salt mine and the salt warehouse or alfolí. The person in charge of guarding and administering the salt warehouse was the alfolineiro.


deed of “the two sites of O Ulló destined for the salt factory”.


the foundation of the Jesuit College of Pontevedra is protected by the family estate of the Mosquera and Pimentel families.


a Royal Decree of 3rd July grants a licence to Melchor Mosquera to “manufacture salt flats”

1694, May, 11

Don Melchor Mosquera transfers the right to manufacture salt flats to the Jesuit College of Pontevedra.

In the 17th century, Antonio Mosquera Villar y Pimentel, General Administrator of the salt works, requested a licence to “work salt” in O Ulló and Larache. In 1637 and 1700, he and his wife acquired land in Vilaboa “on the seashore, in the sandy areas and reedbeds that are on the shore of the sea”. The couple’s son, Melchor Mosquera, took the step of “manufacturing salt pans” in Vilaboa under the protection of the Royal Decree of 1679. He finally transferred his rights over the saltworks in 1694 to the Jesuit College of Pontevedra.

1694, June, 14th

the notary José Rodríguez deeds the land of O Ulló in favour of the Jesuits.


the College of Pontevedra begins to configure the future farm of O Ulló with its house, stables, corrals and farmland.

1698, August, 10th

Don Francisco de León y Luna, Mayor of the Kingdom of Galicia, demarcates the places in O Ulló where the salt works can be built.


the Jesuits of Pontevedra comply with an order of 21 December on the treatment of salt.

In 1694, the Jesuits of Pontevedra inherited the rights to “manufacture saline pans” in Vilaboa from Melchor de Mosquera. In O Ulló they improved the existing salt pans and built a livestock farm with stables, stables, farmyard and dovecote. This farm had a residence or main house for the administrator and farmhouses for the landlords.

1709, August, 30th

The residents of Vilaboa complain about the excesses of the Society of Jesus over the communal property of the parish.

1710, February

The residents of Vilaboa, San Adrián and Santa Cristina dos Cobres are exempted from working in the salt works.

1710- 1712

The Society of Jesus acquires the lands bordering the salt flats with the idea of “making a piece all together”.


The Jesuits are accused by the residents of Vilaboa for continuing to fence off communal land. The lawsuit reached the Royal Court of Galicia.


Salt production is negligible compared to the extraction at the beginning of the century.

754, April, 14th

The Cadastre of the Marquis de la Ensenada states that salt had not been produced in O Ulló for thirty years, however, it records the last trades linked to exploitation.


Heavy rains hinder salt production.


The king Charles III expels the Society of Jesus from the Kingdom. The goods are requisitioned and, subsequently, put up for public auction.

1768, May

Heavy rains hamper salt production.

1769, April

Heavy rains hamper salt production.


Beginning of public bids for properties in O Ulló for which nobody shows much interest.


The southern bank is ruined by a flood.

The boatmen of Vilaboa, Ponte Sampaio and Arcade, supported the work in the salt works by transporting salt to the ships anchored in the estuary. The salt was also used for salting and mudding part of the sardines fished by the sailors, which was sold all along the peninsular coastline. The value of salt was derisory during the 16th and 17th centuries, but it was taxed at a level that made it inaccessible to the majority of the population.

1786, December, 5-12

The storm of these days makes it difficult to maintain the ruined salt marsh benches.

1788, September

Manuela Pérez, landlady of O Ulló, complains about the state of the waterlogged and useless land, without any production to pay her rent. The lease is rejected.

1789, August, 25th

The failed calls for a new lease obliges the residents of Vilaboa to take over “by force” the property of O Ulló.


1814, November, 22

The canon of the cathedral of Santiago, Don Pedro Acuña Malvar (1755-1814) leaves in his will the wish that the Jesuits recover, in the event of returning to Spain, the goods of O Ulló.

1841, November, 26

Doña Manuela Fernández Molina is listed as the owner of the O Ulló property.

She was the landlady of the salt works in 1788. She was a widowed and humble woman who managed the farm linked to the salt pans, for which she paid a large annual rent. As the salt pans’ banks were deteriorated, the sea flooded the land she used for pasture. In 1789, the rent was reduced by 400 reales, but he still decided to abandon the salt farm.

1856, January

The storm damages the ramparts.

1856, February

The stonemason Miguel Antonio Paz budgets the improvement works on the saltworks bench.

1867, August, 26

The farm manager, Prudencio Dios, tries to prohibit the use of argazo (seaweed used as manure) in the vicinity of A Xunqueira.

The women of Vilaboa, like the salineiras of Aveiro, played a fundamental role in the production and transport of salt from O Ulló and Larache. They were responsible for transporting the salt in baskets and baskets to the alfolín or the boats that arrived in Vilaboa to transport the ‘white gold’ from the bottom of the Vigo estuary. They were certainly in charge of cooking for the maintenance of the marnotos and the rest of the employees of the salt works.

1870, November, 12th

The neighbour of Pontevedra Prudencio Dios receives the power to administer the goods and rents of Don José Nazario in his name.


Mr. Arana draws up a memorial with his project to convert the uses and exploitation of the Granxa.

José Nazario de Arana y Ageo, Marquis of Arana, owned half of the farm and the salt pans during the 1870s. He was a resident in Zaragoza and during this time he intended to plant vineyards and corn on the farm, as well as chestnut, willow and pine trees. He also carried out a series of works on the farm. He acquired the whole of the O Ulló salt pans in 1880, buying his share from the residents of Vilaboa.


The works on the buildings of A Granxa improve the main house and its adjoining buildings.

1877, September

Master stonemason Isidoro Núñez Gómez de Tenorio carries out the improvement of the access road to A Granxa from Porta Muíños.

1877, October

Doña Manuela Fernández Molina dies. The reed lands are divided among her heirs.

1880; September, 15th

The Marquis of Arana reunites all the properties around the Granxa do Ulló.


Marquis José Nazario Arana dies.

1887, January, 24th

The Diario de avisos de La Coruña reports on Cazaux’s project to clean up the marshes of O Ulló and install a salting and canning factory on the site.

At the end of the 19th century, the French engineer Felipe Auguste Cazaux, in charge of the railway works passing through Redondela and Tui, acquired the property of O Ulló. Cazaux is credited with one of the last consolidations of the southern bank of the salt marshes (popularly known as A Banca de Casó) as well as the construction of a tide mill.

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