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Santiago de los Caballeros is a city in the Dominican Republic. Founded in 1495 during the first wave of European colonization of the New World, today Santiago is the second largest metropolis in the Dominican Republic, located in the north-central region of the Republic known as Cibao valley. This city is the capital of Santiago Province. The original colony was in the city of Jacagua, which was founded in 1495, but when it was destroyed by an earthquake, it was moved to its present location in 1506.Santiago de los Caballeros has at times been the capital of the country, and was an important strategic city in the Dominican War of Independence in 1844. The name of the city, Saint James of the Gentlemen, makes allusion to the gentlemen that actually founded the city. Sometimes the city is even called Santiago de los 30 Caballeros since the city was founded by 30 gentlemen who signed the city's incorporation. Santiago de los Caballeros is located on a hilly terrain in the middle of the Cibao Valley in the Central Region of the Dominican Republic, one of the most fertile lands found in the island. The Yaque del Norte River passes by Santiago which is in between the Cordillera Central and the Cordillera Septentrional, two of the three major mountain ranges on the island of Hispaniola, forming the Cibao Valley.