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Espargos capital of Sal

Established by Il Duce Benito Mussolini

In 1939, the Italian Dictator Benito Mussolini was allowed to construct a transit airport to serve flights between Italy and South America. Pre-fabricated huts were built for the workers. But the war ended air traffic and in 1946 the Portuguese took control and established flights by 1949. The Ilha do Sal airport was always a transit stop. The airport has been improved ever since. Small houses were built near the airport. Workers from Sao Nicolau called thsis"Preguica" after the port on their own island. Espargos is the town's official name. Espargos means "asparagus" and refers to the wild vegetable grass stalk with its bright yellow flowers which grows in sandy areas around the island. Today Espargos is the principal commercial and government centre of Ilha do Sal. The population is about 6,000.