Beyond commercial activities the “reach-me-down” operators were also important concerning the news spread across the island. The woods taken from the mountains were shipped at the old pier of Porto Novo, the same valley that served as scenario for the battles between liberals and absolutists in the 19 th century seen by whoever would be in the fortress at the West hill. From the mountains, the “levada” owners took the water, the mills motor force, such as for the Manuel Tavares’ watermill in great preserved shape. Water serves also the Public Lavatory, authored by the architect Chorão Ramalho, next at the Ponte Velha (old bridge) with the traditional Madeiran stone pavement used by whoever would cross the island through the Caminhos Reais (royal trails) that later, the Republic era preferred to call as “municipals”. Chorão Ramalho was also the author of all the electric transformation stations that mark all sceneries across the island and Gaula it is said to be the only town whose name was adopted from the chivalry romance “Amandis of Gaula” and according to locals, to the first people baptized in town were given the manes of the characters of this story.

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