Guadeloupe is an insular region of France located in the Leeward Islands, part of the Lesser Antilles in the Caribbean. Administratively, it is an overseas region consisting of a single overseas department. With a land area of 1,628 square kilometres and an estimated population of 400,132 as of January 2015, it is the largest and most populous European Union territory in North America. Guadeloupe's main islands are Basse-Terre, Grande-Terre, Marie-Galante, La Désirade, the Îles des Saintes. Guadeloupe, like the other overseas departments, is an integral part of France; as a constituent territory of the European Union and the Eurozone, the euro is its official currency and any European Union citizen is free to settle and work there indefinitely. As an overseas department, however, it is not part of the Schengen Area; the official language is French, but Antillean Creole is spoken by the entire population except recent arrivals from metropolitan France. The island is called "Gwadada" by the locals.
The island was called "Karukera" by the Arawak people, who settled on there in the year 300. Christopher Columbus named the island Santa María de Guadalupe in 1493 after the Virgin Mary, venerated in the Spanish town of Guadalupe. Upon becoming a French colony, the Spanish name was retained though altered to French orthography and phonology. Archaeological evidence indicates that between 800 and 1000 AD drought led to a period with no habitation. Gradual resettlement occurred after 1000 AD. Christopher Columbus landed on the island in 1493. During the 17th century, the Caribs repelled Spanish settlers; the French Compagnie des Îles de l'Amérique delegated Charles Liènard de l'Olive and Jean du Plessis d'Ossonville to colonize one or any of the region's islands, Martinique, or Dominica. They settled in Guadeloupe in 1635, took possession of the island, wiped out many of the natives crushing them in 1641. Tobacco cultivation in the early 1600s was sustained by European laborers. In 1654 80% of the population of Guadeloupe was of European origin.
In the 1600s African slaves were brought in, by 1671 13%. Of the population was of European origin. Guadeloupe produced more sugar than all the British islands combined, worth about £6 million a year; the British captured Guadeloupe in 1759. Britain had seized Canada in the war, debate took place in both Britain and France as to, more valuable, Canada or Guadeloupe. Britain decided Canada, although expensive to maintain, was of greater strategic value and returned Guadeloupe to France in the Treaty of Paris. In 1790, following the French Revolution, monarchists refused to obey the new laws of equal rights for the free people of color and declared independence in 1791. In 1793, a slave rebellion broke out, which made the upper classes turn to the British and ask them to occupy the island. Britain seized Guadeloupe in April 1794. In December 1794, republican governor Victor Hugues used military force, helped by the slave population, to force the British to surrender. Hugues ended slavery, but in 1802, Napoleon I of France restored it, sending a force to recapture the island.
In 1810 the British again seized the island. In the Treaty of Paris of 1814, Sweden ceded Guadeloupe to France, giving rise to the Guadeloupe Fund; the Treaty of Vienna definitively acknowledged French control of Guadeloupe. In 1848, slavery was abolished. Slaves were replaced by indentured servants imported from India to work in the sugar fields. An earthquake in 1843 caused the La Soufrière volcano to erupt. Guadeloupe lost 12,000 of its 150,000 residents in the cholera epidemic of 1865–66. In 1925, after the trial of Henry Sidambarom French nationality and the vote was granted to Indian citizens. In 1946, the colony of Guadeloupe became an overseas department of France. In 2007 the island communes of Saint-Martin and Saint-Barthélemy were detached from Guadeloupe and became two separate French overseas collectivities with their own local administration. In January 2009, labour unions and others known as the Liyannaj Kont Pwofitasyon went on strike for more pay; the strike lasted 44 days. Tourism suffered during this time and affected the 2010 tourist season as well.
The 2009 French Caribbean general strikes exposed deep ethnic and class tensions and disparities within Guadeloupe. Guadeloupe is an archipelago of more than 12 islands, as well as islets and rocks situated where the northeastern Caribbean Sea meets the western Atlantic Ocean, it is in the Leeward Islands, in the northern part of the Lesser Antilles, an island arc a volcanic arc. Most of the inhabitants live on a pair of islands, Basse-Terre Island and Grande-Terre, which form a butterfly shape, viewed from above, the two wings of which are separated by a narrow sea channel, the Salée River. More than half of Guadeloupe's land surface is on Basse-Terre. Western Basse-Terre has a rough volcanic relief while eastern Grande-Terre features rolling hills and flat plains. La Grande Soufrière is the highest mountain peak in the Lesser Antilles, with an elevation of 1,467 metres; the adjacent islands of La Désirade, Les Saintes, Marie-Galante are under jurisdiction of Guadeloupe. The Lesser Antilles are at the outer edge of the Caribbean Plate.
Many of the islands were formed as a result of the subduction of oceanic crust of the Atlantic Plate under the Caribbean Plate in the Lesser Antilles subduction zone. This process is responsible for volcanic and earthquake activity in the region. Guadeloupe was formed from multiple volcanoes. There is an act
Danish West Indies
The Danish West Indies or Danish Antilles was a Danish colony in the Caribbean, consisting of the islands of Saint Thomas with 32 square miles. The Danish West India Guinea Company annexed the uninhabited island of Saint Thomas in 1672 and St. John in 1675. In 1733, Saint Croix was purchased from the French West India Company; when the Danish company went bankrupt in 1755, the King of Denmark–Norway assumed direct control of the three islands. Britain occupied the Danish West Indies during the Napoleonic Wars. Danish colonizers in the West Indies aimed to exploit the profitable triangular trade, involving the export of firearms and other manufactured goods to Africa in exchange for slaves who were transported to the Caribbean to work the sugar plantations; the final stage of the triangle involved the export of cargos of rum to Denmark. The economy of the Danish West Indies depended on slavery. After a rebellion, slavery was abolished in 1848, leading to the near economic collapse of the plantations.
In 1852 the Danish parliament first debated the sale of the unprofitable colony. Denmark tried several times to sell or exchange the Danish West Indies in the late 19th and early 20th centuries: to the United States and to the German Empire respectively; the islands were sold for 25 million dollars to the United States, which took over the administration on 31 March 1917, renaming the islands the United States Virgin Islands. Merchants in Copenhagen asked King Christian IV for permission to establish a West Indian trading company in 1622, but by the time an eight-year monopoly on trade with the West Indies, Virginia and Guinea was granted on 25 January 1625, the failure of the Danish East India and Iceland Companies and the beginning of Danish involvement in the Thirty Years' War dried up any interest in the idea. Prince Frederick organized a trading mission to Barbados in 1647 under Gabriel Gomez and the de Casseres brothers, but it and a 1651 expedition of two ships were unsuccessful, it was not until Erik Smit's private 1652 expedition aboard the Fortuna was successful that interest in the West Indies' trade grew into an interest in the creation of a new Danish colony.
Smit's 1653 expedition and a separate expedition of five ships were quite successful, but Smit's third found his two vessels captured for a loss of 32,000 rigsdaler. In August two years a Danish flotilla was destroyed by a hurricane. Smit returned from his fourth expedition in 1663 and formally proposed the settlement of St. Thomas to the king in April 1665. After only three weeks' deliberation, the scheme was approved and Smit was named governor. Settlers departed aboard the Eendragt on 1 July, but the expedition was ill-starred: the ship hit two large storms and suffered from fire before reaching its destination, it was raided by English privateers prosecuting the Second Anglo-Dutch War. Smit died of illness, a second band of privateers stole the ship and used it to trade with neighboring islands. Following a hurricane and a renewed outbreak of disease, the colony collapsed, with the English departing for the nearby French colony on Sainte-Croix, the Danes fleeing to Saint Christopher, the Dutch assisting their countrymen on Ter Tholen in stealing everything of value the remaining Danish guns and ammunition.
The Danes formed a Board of Trade in 1668 and secured a commercial treaty with Britain, providing for the unmolested settlement of uninhabited islands, in July 1670. The Danish West India Company was organized in December and formally chartered by King Christian V the next year on March 11, 1671. Jørgen Iversen Dyppel, a successful trader on Saint Christopher, was made governor and the king provided convicts from his jails and two vessels for the establishment of the colony, the yacht Den forgyldte Krone and the frigate Færøe. Den forgyldte Krone was ordered to run ahead and wait but ended up returning to Denmark after the Færøe under Capt. Zacharias Hansen Bang was delayed for repairs in Bergen; the Færøe completed her mission alone, establishing a settlement on St. Thomas on May 25, 1672. From an original contingent of 190 – 12 officials, 116 company "employees", 62 felons and former prostitutes – only 104 remained, 9 having escaped and 77 having died in transit. Another 75 died within the first year.
In 1675, Iversen placed two men there. Further instructions in 1688 to establish a settlement on St. John seem not to have been acted on until Governor Bredal made an official establishment on March 25, 1718; the islands became a base for pirates attacking ships in the vicinity and for the Brandenburg African Company. Governor Lorentz raised enormous taxes upon them and seized warehouses and cargoes of tobacco and slaves in 1689 only to have his actions repudiated by the authorities in Copenhagen. Possession of the island was subsequently disputed with the Scottish in 1698 and lost to the Spanish in 1811. St. Croix was purchased from the French West Indies Company in 1733. In 1754, the islands were sold to the Danish king, Frederick V of Denmark, becoming royal Danish colonies; the first British invasion and occupation of the Danish West Indies occurred during the French Revolutionary Wars when at the end of March 1801 a British fleet a
The Caribbean is a region of The Americas that consists of the Caribbean Sea, its islands and the surrounding coasts. The region is southeast of the Gulf of Mexico and the North American mainland, east of Central America, north of South America. Situated on the Caribbean Plate, the region comprises more than 700 islands, islets and cays; these islands form island arcs that delineate the eastern and northern edges of the Caribbean Sea. The Caribbean islands, consisting of the Greater Antilles on the north and the Lesser Antilles on the south and east, are part of the somewhat larger West Indies grouping, which includes the Lucayan Archipelago; the Lucayans and, less Bermuda, are sometimes considered Caribbean despite the fact that none of these islands border the Caribbean Sea. In a wider sense, the mainland countries and territories of Belize, the Caribbean region of Colombia, the Yucatán Peninsula, Margarita Island, the Guyanas, are included due to their political and cultural ties with the region.
Geopolitically, the Caribbean islands are regarded as a subregion of North America and are organized into 30 territories including sovereign states, overseas departments, dependencies. From December 15, 1954, to October 10, 2010, there was a country known as the Netherlands Antilles composed of five states, all of which were Dutch dependencies. From January 3, 1958, to May 31, 1962, there was a short-lived political union called the West Indies Federation composed of ten English-speaking Caribbean territories, all of which were British dependencies; the West Indies cricket team continues to represent many of those nations. The region takes its name from that of the Caribs, an ethnic group present in the Lesser Antilles and parts of adjacent South America at the time of the Spanish conquest of the Americas; the two most prevalent pronunciations of "Caribbean" outside the Caribbean are, with the primary stress on the third syllable, with the stress on the second. Most authorities of the last century preferred the stress on the third syllable.
This is the older of the two pronunciations, but the stressed-second-syllable variant has been established for over 75 years. It has been suggested that speakers of British English prefer while North American speakers more use, but major American dictionaries and other sources list the stress on the third syllable as more common in American English too. According to the American version of Oxford Online Dictionaries, the stress on the second syllable is becoming more common in UK English and is considered "by some" to be more up to date and more "correct"; the Oxford Online Dictionaries claim that the stress on the second syllable is the most common pronunciation in the Caribbean itself, but according to the Dictionary of Caribbean English Usage, the most common pronunciation in Caribbean English stresses the first syllable instead. The word "Caribbean" has multiple uses, its principal ones are political. The Caribbean can be expanded to include territories with strong cultural and historical connections to slavery, European colonisation and the plantation system.
The United Nations geoscheme for the Americas presents the Caribbean as a distinct region within the Americas. Physiographically, the Caribbean region is a chain of islands surrounding the Caribbean Sea. To the north, the region is bordered by the Gulf of Mexico, the Straits of Florida and the Northern Atlantic Ocean, which lies to the east and northeast. To the south lies the coastline of the continent of South America. Politically, the "Caribbean" may be centred on socio-economic groupings found in the region. For example, the bloc known as the Caribbean Community contains the Co-operative Republic of Guyana, the Republic of Suriname in South America and Belize in Central America as full members. Bermuda and the Turks and Caicos Islands, which are in the Atlantic Ocean, are associate members of the Caribbean Community; the Commonwealth of the Bahamas is in the Atlantic and is a full member of the Caribbean Community. Alternatively, the organisation called the Association of Caribbean States consists of every nation in the surrounding regions that lie on the Caribbean, plus El Salvador, which lies on the Pacific Ocean.
According to the ACS, the total population of its member states is 227 million people. The geography and climate in the Caribbean region varies: Some islands in the region have flat terrain of non-volcanic origin; these islands include Aruba, Curaçao, Bonaire, the Cayman Islands, Saint Croix, the Bahamas, Antigua. Others possess rugged towering mountain-ranges like the islands of Saint Martin, Hispaniola, Puerto Rico, Dominica, Saba, Sint Eustatius, Saint Kitts, Saint Lucia, Saint Thomas, Saint John, Grenada, Saint Vincent, Guadeloupe and Trinidad and Tobago. Definitions of the terms Greater Antilles and Lesser Antilles vary; the Virgin Islands as part of the Puerto Rican bank are sometimes included with the Greater Antilles. The term Lesser Antilles is used to define an island arc that includes Grenada but excludes Trinidad and Tobago and the Leeward Antilles; the waters of the Caribbean Sea host large, migratory schools of fish and coral reef
Barbados is an island country in the Lesser Antilles of the West Indies, in the Caribbean region of North America. It is 34 kilometres in length and up to 23 km in width, covering an area of 432 km2, it is situated in the western area of the North Atlantic and 100 km east of the Windward Islands and the Caribbean Sea. It is about 168 km east of both the countries of Saint Lucia and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and 400 km north-east of Trinidad and Tobago. Barbados is outside the principal Atlantic hurricane belt, its capital and largest city is Bridgetown. Inhabited by Kalinago people since the 13th century, prior to that by other Amerindians, Barbados was visited by Spanish navigators in the late 15th century and claimed for the Spanish Crown, it first appeared in a Spanish map in 1511. The Portuguese claimed the island in 1536, but abandoned it, with their only remnants being an introduction of wild hogs for a good supply of meat whenever the island was visited. An English ship, the Olive Blossom, arrived in Barbados in 1625.
In 1627, the first permanent settlers arrived from England, it became an English and British colony. As a wealthy sugar colony, it became an English centre of the African slave trade until that trade was outlawed in 1807, with final emancipation of slaves in Barbados occurring over a period of years from 1833. On 30 November 1966, Barbados became an independent state and Commonwealth realm with Elizabeth II as its queen, it has a population of 287,010 people, predominantly of African descent. Despite being classified as an Atlantic island, Barbados is considered to be a part of the Caribbean, where it is ranked as a leading tourist destination. Forty percent of the tourists come from the UK, with the US and Canada making up the next large groups of visitors to the island; the name "Barbados" is from either the Portuguese term Os Barbados or the Spanish equivalent, Los Barbados, both meaning "the bearded ones". It is unclear whether "bearded" refers to the long, hanging roots of the bearded fig-tree, indigenous to the island, or to the bearded Caribs who once inhabited the island, or, more fancifully, to a visual impression of a beard formed by the sea foam that sprays over the outlying reefs.
In 1519, a map produced by the Genoese mapmaker Visconte Maggiolo showed and named Barbados in its correct position. Furthermore, the island of Barbuda in the Leewards is similar in name and was once named "Las Barbudas" by the Spanish, it is uncertain. One lesser-known source points to earlier revealed works predating contemporary sources indicating it could have been the Spanish. Many if not most believe the Portuguese, en route to Brazil, were the first Europeans to come upon the island; the original name for Barbados in the Pre-Columbian era was Ichirouganaim, according to accounts by descendants of the indigenous Arawakan-speaking tribes in other regional areas, with possible translations including "Red land with white teeth" or "Redstone island with teeth outside" or "Teeth". Colloquially, Barbadians refer to their home island as "Bim" or other nicknames associated with Barbados, including "Bimshire"; the origin is uncertain. The National Cultural Foundation of Barbados says that "Bim" was a word used by slaves, that it derives from the Igbo term bém from bé mụ́ meaning'my home, kind', the Igbo phoneme in the Igbo orthography is close to.
The name could have arisen due to the large percentage of enslaved Igbo people from modern-day southeastern Nigeria arriving in Barbados in the 18th century. The words'Bim' and'Bimshire' are recorded in the Oxford English Dictionary and Chambers Twentieth Century Dictionaries. Another possible source for'Bim' is reported to be in the Agricultural Reporter of 25 April 1868, where the Rev. N. Greenidge suggested the listing of Bimshire as a county of England. Expressly named were "Wiltshire, Hampshire and Bimshire". Lastly, in the Daily Argosy of 1652, there is a reference to Bim as a possible corruption of'Byam', the name of a Royalist leader against the Parliamentarians; that source suggested the followers of Byam became known as'Bims' and that this became a word for all Barbadians. Amerindian settlement of Barbados dates to about the 4th to 7th centuries AD, by a group known as the Saladoid-Barrancoid; the Arawaks from South America became dominant around 800 AD, maintained that status until around 1200.
In the 13th century, the Kalinago arrived from South America. The Spanish and Portuguese claimed Barbados from the late 16th to the 17th centuries; the Arawaks are believed to have fled to neighbouring islands. Apart from displacing the Caribs, the Spanish and Portuguese made little impact and left the island uninhabited; some Arawaks continue to live in Barbados. In the early years the majority of the labour was provided by European indentured servants English and Scottish, with enslaved Africans and enslaved Amerindian providing little of the workforce. During the Cromwellian era this included a large number of prisoners-of-war and people who were illicitly kidnapped, who were forcibly transported to the island and sold as servants; these last two groups were predominately Irish, as several thousand were infamously rounded up by Engli
Saint Barthélemy the Territorial collectivity of Saint-Barthélemy, called Ouanalao by the indigenous people, is an overseas collectivity of France in the West Indies. Abbreviated to St-Barth in French, St. Barths or St. Barts in English, the island lies about 35 kilometres southeast of St. Martin and north of St. Kitts. Puerto Rico is 240 kilometres to the west in the Greater Antilles. Saint Barthélemy was for many years a French commune forming part of Guadeloupe, an overseas region and department of France. In 2003, the island voted in favour of secession from Guadeloupe in order to form a separate overseas collectivity of France; the collectivity is one of four territories among the Leeward Islands in the northeastern Caribbean that comprise the French West Indies, along with Saint Martin and Martinique. Saint Barthélemy, a volcanic island encircled by shallow reefs, has an area of 25 square kilometres and a population of 9,625, its capital is Gustavia, which contains the main harbour to the island.
It is the only Caribbean island, a Swedish colony for any significant length of time. Symbolism from the Swedish national arms, the Three Crowns, still appears in the island's coat of arms; the language and culture, are distinctly French. The island is a popular tourist destination during the winter holiday season for the rich and famous during the Christmas and New Year period. Before European contact the island was frequented by Eastern Caribbean Taíno people. Christopher Columbus was the first European to encounter the island in 1493, he named it after his brother Bartolomeo. Sporadic visits continued for the next hundred years. By 1648, the island was settled from St. Christopher, but the settlement was attacked and destroyed by Caribs six years later; these first French settlers had been encouraged by Phillippe de Longvilliers de Poincy, the lieutenant-governor of the French West India Company and comprised about 50 to 60 settlers. Led by Jacques Gentes, the new arrivals began cultivating cacao, until the Carib attack forced them to retreat.
De Poincy was a member of the Order of Saint John. He facilitated the transfer of ownership from the Compagnie des Îles de l'Amérique to the Order, he continued to rule the island until his death in 1660. Five years it was bought by the French West India Company along with the Order's other possessions in the Caribbean. By 1674, the company was dissolved and the islands became part of the French Kingdom. There was a brief takeover by the British in 1758; the island was given to Sweden in 1784 in exchange for trade rights in Gothenburg. It was only after 1784, when King Louis XVI traded the island to Sweden, that the island's fortunes changed for the better; this change of control saw progress and prosperity as the Swedes declared Gustavia a free port, convenient for trading by the Europeans for goods, including contraband material. Slavery was practiced in St. Barthélemy under the "Ordinance concerning the Police of Slaves and free Coloured People" of 1787; the last legally-owned slaves in the Swedish colony of St. Barthélemy were granted their freedom by the state on 9 October 1847.
Since the island was not a plantation area, the freed slaves suffered economic hardships due to lack of opportunities for employment. In 1852, a devastating hurricane hit this was followed by a fire. Following a referendum in 1877, Sweden gave the island back to France in 1878, after which it was administered as part of Guadeloupe. On 19 March 1946, the people of the island became French citizens with full rights. Many men from St. Barthélemy took jobs on Saint Thomas to support their families; the island received electricity circa 1961. Organised tourism and hotels began in earnest the 1960s and developed in the 1970s onwards after the building of the island's landing strip that can accommodate mid-sized aircraft; the coves and beach-side hotels attract catered and self-catered honeymooners. The capital attracts cruise liners. Saint Barthélemy was for many years a French commune forming part of Guadeloupe, an overseas region and department of France. Through a referendum in 2003, island residents sought separation from the administrative jurisdiction of Guadeloupe, it was accomplished in 2007.
The island of Saint Barthélemy became an Overseas Collectivity. A governing territorial council was elected for its administration, which has provided the island with a certain degree of autonomy; the Hotel de Ville, the town hall, is now the Hotel de la Collectivité. A senator represents the island in Paris. St. Barthélemy has retained its free port status. Saint Barthélemy ceased being an outermost region and left the EU, to become an OCT, on 1 January 2012; the island sustained damage from Hurricane Irma in September 2017 but by March 2018, the airport was handling daily flights and the ferry between St. Martin and St. Barts was operating. Electricity and water had been restored; some hotels were not yet open but most were expected to be operating by the fall of the year. The cruise ship port in Gustavia was operational. Located 250 kilometres east of Puerto Rico and the nearer Virgin Islands, St. Barthélemy lies sou
French West Indies
The term French West Indies or French Antilles refers to the seven territories under French sovereignty in the Antilles islands of the Caribbean: The two overseas departments of: Guadeloupe, including the islands of Basse-Terre, Grande-Terre, Les Saintes, Marie-Galante, La Désirade. Martinique The two overseas collectivities of: Saint Martin Saint BarthélemyDue to its proximity, French Guiana is associated with the French West Indies. Pierre Belain d'Esnambuc was a French trader and adventurer in the Caribbean, who established the first permanent French colony, Saint-Pierre, on the island of Martinique in 1635. Belain sailed to the Caribbean in 1625, hoping to establish a French settlement on the island of St. Christopher. In 1626 he returned to France, where he won the support of Cardinal Richelieu to establish French colonies in the region. Richelieu became a shareholder in the Compagnie de Saint-Christophe, created to accomplish this with d'Esnambuc at its head; the company was not successful and Richelieu had it reorganized as the Compagnie des Îles de l'Amérique.
In 1635 d'Esnambuc sailed to Martinique with one hundred French settlers to clear land for sugarcane plantations. After six months on Martinique, d'Esnambuc returned to St. Christopher, where he soon died prematurely in 1636, his nephew, Jacques Dyel du Parquet, inherited d'Esnambuc's authority over the French settlements in the Caribbean, in 1637 becoming governor of Martinique. He did not concern himself with the other islands; the French permanently settled on Martinique and Guadeloupe after being driven off Saint Kitts and Nevis by the British. Fort Royal on Martinique was a major port for French battle ships in the region from which the French were able to explore the region. In 1638, Jacques Dyel du Parquet, nephew of Pierre Belain d'Esnambuc and first governor of Martinique, decided to have Fort Saint Louis built to protect the city against enemy attacks. From Fort Royal, Martinique, Du Parquet proceeded south in search for new territories and established the first settlement in Saint Lucia in 1643, headed an expedition which established a French settlement in Grenada in 1649.
Despite the long history of British rule, Grenada's French heritage is still evidenced by the number of French loanwords in Grenadian Creole, French-style buildings and places name In 1642 the Compagnie des Îles de l'Amérique received a twenty-year extension of its charter. The King would name the Governor General of the company, the company the Governors of the various islands. However, by the late 1640s, in France Mazarin had little interest in colonial affairs and the company languished. In 1651 it dissolved itself; the du Paquet family bought Martinique and Saint Lucia for 60,000 livres. The sieur d'Houël bought Marie-Galante, La Desirade and the Saintes; the Knights of Malta bought Saint Barthélemy and Saint Martin, which were made dependencies of Guadeloupe. In 1665, the Knights sold the islands they had acquired to the newly formed Compagnie des Indes occidentales. Dominica is a former French and British colony in the Eastern Caribbean, located about halfway between the French islands of Guadeloupe and Martinique.
Christopher Columbus named the island after the day of the week on which he spotted it, a Sunday, 3 November 1493. In the hundred years after Columbus's landing, Dominica remained isolated. At the time it was inhabited by the Island Caribs, or Kalinago people, over time more settled there after being driven from surrounding islands, as European powers entered the region. In 1690, French woodcutters from Martinique and Guadeloupe begin to set up timber camps to supply the French islands with wood and become permanent settlers. France had a colony for several years, they imported slaves from West Africa and Guadeloupe to work on its plantations. In this period, the Antillean Creole language developed. France formally ceded possession of Dominica to Great Britain in 1763. Great Britain established a small colony on the island in 1805; as a result, Dominicans speak English as an official language while Antillean creole is spoken as a secondary language and is well maintained due to its location between the French-speaking departments of Guadeloupe and Martinique.
In Trinidad, the occupying Spanish had contributed little towards advancements, despite the island's ideal location. Because it was considered underpopulated, Roume de St. Laurent, a Frenchman living in Grenada, was able to obtain a Cédula de Población from the Spanish king Charles III, on 4 November 1783, allowing French planters with their slaves, free coloreds and mulattos from the French Antilles of Martinique, Grenada and Dominica to migrate to Trinidad; the Spanish gave many incentives to lure settlers to the island, including exemption from taxes for ten years and land grants in accordance to the terms set out in the Cedula. This exodus was encouraged by the French Revolution; these new immigrants established the local communities of Blanchisseuse, Champs Fleurs, Cascade and Laventille, adding to the ancestry of Trinidadians and creating the creole identity. Trinidad's population jumped from just under 1,400 in 1777, to over 15,000 by the end of 1789. In 1797, Trinidad became a British crown colony, with a French-speaking population.
The two official French overseas departments are Martinique. St. Martin and St. Barthélemy attached to the department of Guadeloupe, ha
Saint Kitts and Nevis
Saint Kitts and Nevis known as the Federation of Saint Christopher and Nevis, is an island country in the West Indies. Located in the Leeward Islands chain of the Lesser Antilles, it is the smallest sovereign state in the Western Hemisphere, in both area and population; the country is a Commonwealth realm, with Elizabeth II as head of state. The capital city is Basseterre on the larger island of Saint Kitts; the smaller island of Nevis lies 3 km southeast of Saint Kitts across a shallow channel called "The Narrows". The British dependency of Anguilla was also a part of this union, known collectively as Saint Christopher-Nevis-Anguilla. To the north-northwest lie the islands of Sint Eustatius, Saba, Saint Barthélemy, Saint-Martin/Sint Maarten and Anguilla. To the east and northeast are Antigua and Barbuda, to the southeast is the small uninhabited island of Redonda, the island of Montserrat, which has an active volcano. Saint Kitts and Nevis were among the first islands in the Caribbean to be settled by Europeans.
Saint Kitts was home to the first British and French colonies in the Caribbean, thus has been titled "The Mother Colony of the West Indies". Saint Kitts was named "Liamuiga", which translates as "fertile land", by the Kalinago who inhabited the island; the name is preserved via Mount Liamuiga. Nevis's pre-Columbian name was "Oualie", meaning "land of beautiful waters". Christopher Columbus upon sighting what is now Nevis in 1493 gave that island the name San Martín; the current name "Nevis" is derived from a Spanish name Nuestra Señora de las Nieves. This Spanish name means Our Lady of the Snows, it is not known who chose this name for the island, but it is a reference to the story of a fourth-century Catholic miracle: a summertime snowfall on the Esquiline Hill in Rome. The white clouds which wreathe the top of Nevis Peak reminded someone of the story of a miraculous snowfall in a hot climate; the island of Nevis upon first British settlement was referred to as "Dulcina", a name meaning "sweet one" in Spanish.
The original Spanish name was restored and used in the shortened form, "Nevis". There is some disagreement over the name. For many years it was thought that he named the island San Cristóbal, after Saint Christopher, his patron saint and the patron hallow of travellers. New studies suggest; the name "San Cristóbal" was given by Columbus to the island now known as Saba, 20 mi northwest. It seems that "San Cristóbal" came to be applied to the island of St. Kitts only as the result of a mapping error. No matter the origin of the name, the island was well documented as "San Cristóbal" by the 17th century; the first English colonists kept the English translation of this name, dubbed it "St. Christopher's Island". In the 17th century, a common nickname for Christopher was Kitt; this is why the island was informally referred to as "Saint Kitt's Island", further shortened to "Saint Kitts". Today the Constitution refers to the state as both "Saint Kitts and Nevis" and "Saint Christopher and Nevis", but the former is the one most used.
The name of the first inhabitants, pre-Arawakan peoples who settled the islands as early as 3000 years ago, is not known. They were followed by the Arawak peoples, or Taíno about 1000 BC. Peak native populations occurred between 500 and 600 AD; the warlike Island Caribs invaded about 800 AD. They had expanded north of St. Kitts by the time of the Spanish conquest. In 1623, the island was settled by the English, soon followed by the French; the Spanish were superior to the Kalinagos in terms of warfare, the French and English were more "economically aggressive and militarily determined" than the Spanish. The French and English, intent on self-enrichment through exploitation of the island's natural resources, understood from the start that their establishment of settlements in St. Kitts would be met with resistance, such resistance was waged by the Kalinago throughout the first three years of the settlements' existence. Throughout the process of establishing settlements on St. Kitts, as elsewhere in the Caribbean, the French and the English, like their predecessors, were intent on enslaving, expelling or exterminating the Kalinagos, since the latter's retention of land threatened the profitability of the European-controlled plantation economy.
To facilitate this objective, an ideological campaign was waged by colonial chroniclers, dating back to the Spanish, as they produced literature which systematically denied Kalinago humanity. In 1626, the Anglo-French settlers joined forces to massacre the Kalinago to pre-empt an imminent plan by the Caribs, conniving with the Kalinagos, to expel or kill. A Spanish expedition sent to enforce Spanish claims destroyed the English and French colonies and deported the settlers back to their respective countries in 1629; as part of the war settlement in 1630, the Spanish permitted the re-establishment of the English and French colonies. As Spanish power went into decline, Saint Kitts became the premier base for English and French expansion into the Caribbean. From St. Kitts, the British settled the islands of Antigua, Montserrat and Tortola, the French settled Martinique, the Guadeloupe archipelago and St. Barts. During the late-seventeenth century, Fra