List of oldest buildings in the Americas

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This article lists the oldest known surviving buildings constructed in the Americas, including on each of the regions and within each country. "Building" is defined as any human-made structure used or interface for supporting or sheltering any use or continuous occupancy. In order to qualify for this list a structure must:


Pre-Columbian era

NameImageNoteCountryHistorical regionFirst BuiltUseSource
Sechin Bajo Sechin casma valley.JPG A large archaeological site with ruins dating from 3500 BCE to 1300 BCE Department of Áncash, Peru 3500 BCAdministrative-Ceremonial center [1]
Pyramids of Caral Caral-Supe in Peru.jpg These pyramids predate the Egyptian pyramids by around 100 years Department of Lima, Peru Caral civilization 2600 BCTemples and residential buildings [2]
Kotosh Templo Blanco de Kotosh amb l'edifici del Templo de las Manos darrera06.jpg Archaeological site consisting of buildings with six periods of continuous occupation. Huánuco, Peru 1800 BCTemple [3]
Garagay PILASTRA FRENTE.jpg One of the largest centers of pre-Columbian culture on Peru's central coast Lima, Peru 1400 BCTemples [4]
Yucuita Yucuito.jpg Founded by the Mixtec civilization in the pre-Classic Period Oaxaca, Mexico Mixtec civilization 14th century BCCeremonial center and a square [5]
San José Mogote San Jose Mogote Pyramid.jpg San José Mogote was the largest and most important settlement in the Valley of Oaxaca during the Early and Middle Formative periods Oaxaca, Mexico Zapotec civilization 1300 BCTown [6]
Chavín de Huantar Chavin de Huantar-5.jpg Occupation at Chavín de Huántar has been carbon dated to at least 3000 BCE Department of Áncash, Peru Chavín culture 1200 BCReligious center [7]

Colonial era

NameImageNoteLocationHistorical regionBuiltSource
Basilica Cathedral of Santa María la Menor Basilica Menor de Santa Maria CCSD 07 2017 4676.jpg It was the first and oldest cathedral established in the Americas. Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic Columbian Viceroyalty, Spanish Empire 1514-1541 [8] [9]
Monasterio de San Francisco CCSD RD 12 2017 7554.jpg It was the first and oldest monastery built in the Americas. Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic Columbian Viceroyalty, Spanish Empire1509-1560 [9]
Hospital San Nicolás de Bari Ruinas San Nicolas de Bari CCSD 09 2018 1414.jpg It was the oldest hospital built in the Americas. Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic Columbian Viceroyalty, Spanish Empire1503 [9] [10]
Ozama Fortress Fortaleza Ozama RD 11 2017 6495.jpg It is the oldest military construction of European origin in the Americas. Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic Columbian Viceroyalty, Spanish Empire1502-1508 [9] [11]
Palace of Cortés Palacio de Cortes 2017.jpg It is the oldest conserved colonial-era civil structure in the continental Americas. Cuernavaca, Mexico Viceroyalty of New Spain, Spanish Empire1523-1528 [12] [13]
Colegio de Santa Cruz de Tlatelolco Templo y Ex Convento, Santiago Tlatelolco.jpg It was the first European school of higher learning in the Americas and the first major school of interpreters and translators in the New World. Mexico City, Mexico Viceroyalty of New Spain, Spanish Empire1536 [14] [15]
Biblioteca Palafoxiana BIBLIOTECA PALAFOXIANA.tif It is the first and oldest public library in the Americas. Puebla City, Mexico Viceroyalty of New Spain, Spanish Empire1646-1773 [16] [17] [18]

See also

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Fortaleza Ozama Early sixteenth-century fortress built by the Spaniards

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Basilica Cathedral of Santa María la Menor

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Museo de las Casas Reales

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Hospital San Nicolás de Bari hospital in the Dominican Republic

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Biblioteca Palafoxiana Library in Puebla, Mexico

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Historic centre of Puebla old town in Mexico

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