American Pictures/ Tony Morrison
Minas Gerais state, The Rio São Francisco 1800 miles (2900km) is the longest
river wholly in Brazil and is known as the 'river of national unity' as it connects
the north-east and south-east. For many years Mississippi-style sternwheel paddle
steamers, known as gaiolas [small steamers] carried passengers and cargo
between Juazeiro in Bahia, Petrolina in Pernambuco and Pirapora in Minas Gerais.