Territories of the United States

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Territories of the United States
Flag of CommonwealthUnincoprorated TerritoryInsular area
  The 50 states and the Federal District  Commonwealth (see footnote)   Incorporated unorganized territory   Unincorporated organized territory   Unincorporated unorganized territory
  The 50 states and the Federal District
  Commonwealth (see footnote)
  Incorporated unorganized territory
  Unincorporated organized territory
  Unincorporated unorganized territory
Largest settlement San Juan, Puerto Rico, United States
Languages English, Spanish, Hawaiian, Chamorro, Carolinian, Samoan
Demonym American
Territories
Leaders
Donald Trump
List of current territorial governors
Area
• Total
22,294.19 km2 (8,607.83 sq mi)
Population
• Estimate
4,065,516
Currency United States Dollar
Date format mm/dd/yyyy (AD)
  1. ^ "The term 'Commonwealth' does not describe or provide for any specific political status or relationship. It has, for example, been applied to both states and territories. When used in connection with areas under U.S. sovereignty that are not states, the term broadly describes an area that is self-governing under a constitution of its adoption and whose right of self-government will not be unilaterally withdrawn by Congress."[1]
Example of one of the interim political divisions of the United States (as they were from 1868 to 1876, including nine organized territories and two unorganized territories).
Tumon Beach in Guam.
Mount Tapochau in the Northern Mariana Islands.
Afono village in American Samoa.
The Wake Island Lagoon in Wake Island.

Territories of the United States are sub-national administrative divisions directly overseen by the United States (U.S.) federal government. Unlike U.S. states and Indian tribes that have sovereignty alongside the federal government, only one territory has sovereignty. The territories are classified by whether they are "incorporated" (i.e., part of the U.S. proper) and whether they have an "organized" government through an Organic Act passed by the U.S. Congress.[2]

The U.S. has sixteen territories in the Caribbean Sea, the south Pacific Ocean, and the western portion of the north Pacific Ocean. Five of them are permanently inhabited and are classified as unincorporated territories, the other eleven are small islands, atolls, and reefs with no native or permanent population. Of those eleven, only one is classified as an incorporated territory.

Historically, territories were created to govern newly acquired land while the borders of the U.S. were still evolving. Most territories eventually attained statehood. Other territories administered by the U.S. eventually became independent countries, such as the Philippines, Micronesia, the Marshall Islands, and Palau. Micronesia, the Marshall Islands, and Palau gained independence under the Compact of Free Association (COFA), which gives the U.S. full authority over aid and defense in exchange for continuing access to U.S. health care, government services such as the Federal Communications Commission and the U.S. Postal Service, and the right for COFA citizens to work freely in the U.S. and vice versa.[citation needed]

Many organized incorporated territories of the United States existed from 1789 to 1959. The first were the Northwest and the Southwest territories and the last were the Alaska Territory and the Hawaii Territory. Thirty-one of these territories applied for and were granted statehood; in the process of organizing and promoting territories to statehood, some areas of a territory lacking sufficient development and population densities were temporarily orphaned from parts of a larger territory when residents voted on whether to petition Congress for statehood. For example, when a portion of the Missouri Territory became the state of Missouri, the remaining portion of the territory, consisting of all the states of Iowa, Nebraska, South Dakota, and North Dakota, most of Kansas, Wyoming, and Montana, and parts of Colorado and Minnesota, effectively became an unorganized territory.[citation needed]

Existing territories and their legal status[edit]

Territories have always been a part of the U.S.[3] According to federal law, the term "United States", when used in a geographical sense, means "the continental United States, Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, Guam, and the United States Virgin Islands",[4] since political union with the Northern Mariana Islands in 1986, they too are treated as a part of the U.S.[4] An executive order adopted in 2007 includes American Samoa in the U.S. "geographical extent" as reflected in U.S. Department of State documents.[5]

Permanently inhabited territories[edit]

The U.S. has five territories that are permanently inhabited: Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands in the Caribbean Sea; Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands in the Marianas archipelago in the western North Pacific Ocean; and American Samoa in the South Pacific Ocean.

Approximately 4 million people in these territories are U.S. citizens. American Samoa has about 32,000 non-citizen U.S. nationals.[6] Under U.S. law, among the territories, "only persons born in American Samoa and Swains Island are non-citizen U.S. nationals."[7] American Samoans are under the protection of the U.S., with the ability to travel to the U.S. without a visa.[7]

Each of these territories is an organized, self-governing territory with three branches of government, a locally elected governor, and a territorial legislature.

Each also elects a non-voting member or, in the case of Puerto Rico a non-voting resident commissioner, to the U.S. House of Representatives.[8][9] They "possess the same powers as other members of the House, except that they may not vote when the House is meeting as the House of Representatives."[10] They participate in debate, are assigned offices and money for staff, and appoint constituents from their territories to the Army, Navy and Marine Corps, Air Force, and Merchant Marine service academies.[10] They can vote in committee on all legislation presented to the House of Representatives, they are included in their party count for each committee, and they are equal to senators on conference committees. Depending on the congress, they may also vote on the floor in the House Committee of the Whole,[11] as of January 2017, the members of Congress from these territories were: Gregorio Sablan for the Northern Mariana Islands, Madeleine Bordallo for Guam, Amata Coleman Radewagen for American Samoa, Jenniffer González for Puerto Rico, and Stacey Plaskett for the U.S. Virgin Islands.[12]

Every four years, U.S. political parties nominate their presidential candidates at conventions, which include delegates from these territories.[13] The U.S. citizens living in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, however, cannot vote in the general election for president of the U.S.

These territories pay some U.S. taxes and are under the protection of U.S. courts.

The capitals of these territories are Pago Pago in American Samoa; Hagåtña in Guam; Saipan in the Northern Mariana Islands; San Juan in Puerto Rico; and, Charlotte Amalie in the U.S. Virgin Islands.[14]

Uninhabited territories[edit]

The U.S. has eleven territories with no native or permanent population. They are small islands, atolls, and reefs spread across the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean: Palmyra Atoll, Baker Island, Howland Island, Jarvis Island, Johnston Atoll, Kingman Reef, the Midway Islands, Bajo Nuevo Bank, Navassa Island, Serranilla Bank, and Wake Island. Palmyra Atoll (formally, the United States Territory of Palmyra Island[15]) is the only incorporated U.S. territory, a status it has maintained since the Territory of Hawaii became a state in 1959.

The status of Navassa Island, Wake Island, Serranilla Bank, and Bajo Nuevo Bank are disputed by Colombia, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Nicaragua, and the Marshall Islands.[16][17]

Incorporated and unincorporated territories[edit]

The U.S. Congress decides whether a territory is incorporated or unincorporated, the entire U.S. constitution applies to each incorporated territory, including its local government and all of its inhabitants, in the same manner as it applies to the local governments and residents of a state. Incorporated territories are considered an integral part of the U.S., not mere possessions.[18]

From 1901 to 1905, the U.S. Supreme Court in a series of cases known as the Insular Cases held that the constitution extended by its own force to U.S. territories. The Court in these cases, however, also established the doctrine of territorial incorporation, under which the constitution applies fully to incorporated territories, such as the territories of Alaska and Hawaii, and applies partially in the unincorporated territories of Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Philippines.[19][20]

The U.S. had no unincorporated territories (also called "overseas possessions" or "insular areas") until 1856. In that year, the U.S. Congress enacted the Guano Islands Act, which authorised the president to take possession of unclaimed islands to mine guano. Under this law, the U.S. has taken control of and claimed rights in many islands, atolls, etc., especially in the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean, most of which have since been abandoned. The U.S. also has acquired territories since 1856 under other circumstances, such as under the Treaty of Paris (1898) that ended the Spanish–American War. The U.S. Supreme Court considered the constitutional position of these unincorporated territories in Balzac v. People of Porto Rico, where the Court said the following about a U.S. court in Puerto Rico:[21]:312

The United States District Court is not a true United States court established under article 3 of the Constitution to administer the judicial power of the United States.... It is created ... by the sovereign congressional faculty, granted under article 4, 3, of that instrument, of making all needful rules and regulations respecting the territory belonging to the United States. The resemblance of its jurisdiction to that of true United States courts, in offering an opportunity to nonresidents of resorting to a tribunal not subject to local influence, does not change its character as a mere territorial court.

In Glidden Company v. Zdanok, the U.S. Supreme Court cited the Balzac case and said with regard to courts in unincorporated territories, "Upon like considerations, Article III has been viewed as inapplicable to courts created in unincorporated territories outside the mainland ... and to the consular courts established by concessions from foreign countries...."[22]:547

The U.S. Supreme Court has recognized two ways in which incorporation could be made: "incorporation is not to be assumed without express declaration, or an implication so strong as to exclude any other view."[citation needed]

Express or implied?[edit]

In the Balzac case, the Court defined the meaning of "implied":[21]:306

Had Congress intended to take the important step of changing the treaty status of Puerto Rico by incorporating it into the Union, it is reasonable to suppose that it would have done so by the plain declaration, and would not have left it to mere inference, before the question became acute at the close of the Spanish War, the distinction between acquisition and incorporation was not regarded as important, or at least it was not fully understood and had not aroused great controversy. Before that, the purpose of Congress might well be a matter of mere inference from various legislative acts; but in these latter days, incorporation is not to be assumed without express declaration, or an implication so strong as to exclude any other view.

U.S. Supreme Court decisions about particular territories[edit]

The U.S. Supreme Court in Rassmussen v. U.S. first quoted from Article III of the 1867 treaty for the purchase of Alaska and then said, "'The inhabitants of the ceded territory ... shall be admitted to the enjoyment of all the rights, advantages, and immunities of citizens of the United States....' This declaration, although somewhat changed in phraseology, is the equivalent ... of the formula, employed from the beginning to express the purpose to incorporate acquired territory into the United States, especially in the absence of other provisions showing an intention to the contrary."[23]:522

The act of incorporation is on the people of the territory, not on the territory per se, by extending the privileges and immunities clause of the constitution to them.[citation needed]

Alaska Territory[edit]

The Rassmussen case arose out of a criminal conviction by a six-person jury in Alaska under a federal law allowing this procedure there, the Court held that Alaska had been incorporated into the U.S. because of the treaty of cession with Russia.[24] In addition, the Congressional implication was so strong as to exclude any other view:[23]:523

That Congress, shortly following the adoption of the treaty with Russia, clearly contemplated the incorporation of Alaska into the United States as a part thereof, we think plainly results from the act of July 20, 1868, concerning internal revenue taxation ... and the act of July 27, 1868 ... extending the laws of the United States relating to customs, commerce, and navigation over Alaska, and establishing a collection district therein. ... And this is fortified by subsequent action of Congress, which it is unnecessary to refer to.

In his concurring opinion, Justice Brown expressed the same thought:[23]:533-4

Apparently, acceptance of the territory is insufficient in the opinion of the court in this case, since the result that Alaska is incorporated into the United States is reached, not through the treaty with Russia, or through the establishment of a civil government there, but from the act ... extending the laws of the United States relating to the customs, commerce, and navigation over Alaska, and establishing a collection district there. Certain other acts are cited, notably the judiciary act ... making it the duty of this court to assign ... the several territories of the United States to particular Circuits.

Florida Territory[edit]

In Dorr v. U.S., the U.S. Supreme Court quoted Chief Justice Marshall from an earlier case as follows:[25]:141-2

"The 6th article of the treaty of cession contains the following provision: 'The inhabitants of the territories which His Catholic Majesty cedes the United States by this treaty shall be incorporated in the Union of the United States as soon as may be consistent with the principles of the Federal Constitution, and admitted to the enjoyment of the privileges, rights, and immunities of the citizens of the United States.' ... This treaty is the law of the land, and admits the inhabitants of Florida to the enjoyment of the privileges, rights, and immunities of the citizens of the United States, it is unnecessary to inquire whether this is not their condition, independent of stipulation. They do not, however, participate in political power; they do not share in the government till Florida shall become a state. In the meantime Florida continues to be a territory of the United States, governed by virtue of that clause in the Constitution which empowers Congress "to make all needful rules and regulations respecting the territory or other property belonging to the United States.'"

In Downes v. Bidwell, the Court said, "The same construction was adhered to in the treaty with Spain for the purchase of Florida ... the 6th article of which provided that the inhabitants should 'be incorporated into the Union of the United States, as soon as may be consistent with the principles of the Federal Constitution.'"[26]:256

Southwest Territory[edit]

In the Downes case, the first mention of incorporation is made in the following paragraph by Justice Brown:[26]:321-2

In view of this it cannot, it seems to me, be doubted that the United States continued to be composed of states and territories, all forming an integral part thereof and incorporated therein, as was the case prior to the adoption of the Constitution. Subsequently, the territory now embraced in the state of Tennessee was ceded to the United States by the state of North Carolina; in order to insure the rights of the native inhabitants, it was expressly stipulated that the inhabitants of the ceded territory should enjoy all the rights, privileges, benefits, and advantages set forth in the ordinance 'of the late Congress for the government of the western territory of the United States.

Louisiana Territory[edit]

First U.S. stamp to commemorate a territory and depict a map (1904)

In the Downes case, the Court said:[26]:252

Owing to a new war between England and France being upon the point of breaking out, there was need for haste in the negotiations, and Mr. Livingston took the responsibility of disobeying his (Mr. Jefferson's) instructions, and, probably owing to the insistence of Bonaparte, consented to the 3d article of the treaty (with France to acquire the territory of Louisiana), which provided that 'the inhabitants of the ceded territory shall be incorporated in the Union of the United States, and admitted as soon as possible, according to the principles of the Federal Constitution, to the enjoyment of all the rights, advantages, and immunities of citizens of the United States; and in the meantime they shall be maintained and protected in the free enjoyment of their liberty, property, and the religion which they profess.' [8 Stat. at L. 202.] This evidently committed the government to the ultimate, but not to the immediate, admission of Louisiana as a state....

The U.S. Supreme Court is unanimous in its interpretation that the extension of the privileges and immunities clause of the U.S. Constitution to the inhabitants of a territory in effect produces the incorporation of that territory, the net effect of incorporation is that the territory becomes an integral part of the geographical boundaries of the U.S. and cannot, from then on, be separated. The whole body of the U.S. Constitution is extended to the inhabitants of that territory, except for those provisions that relate to its federal character.

Moreso, the needful rules and regulations of the territorial clause must yield to the Constitution and the inherent constraints imposed on it in dealing with the privileges and immunities of the inhabitants of the incorporated territory.

Notice must be taken that incorporation of a territory takes place through the incorporation of its inhabitants, not of the territory per se. As such, those inhabitants receive the full impact of the U.S. Constitution, except for those provisions that deal specifically with the federal character of the Union.[citation needed]

Organized territory[edit]

Lands under the sovereignty of the federal government (but not part of any state) that were given a measure of self-rule by the Congress through an Organic Act subject to the Congress' plenary powers under the territorial clause of Article IV, sec. 3, of the U.S. Constitution.[27]

Classification of current U.S. territories[edit]

Incorporated organized territories[edit]

No incorporated organized territory has existed since 1959, with the last two being the territories of Alaska and Hawaii, both of which achieved statehood in that year.

Incorporated unorganized territories[edit]

Many incorporated unorganized territories became incorporated organized territories or states, for example, when the eastern part of the incorporated organized territory called Minnesota became the state of Minnesota in 1858, the western part became part of an unorganized territory. Later, that became a part of the Dakota Territory, out of which two states and some parts of other states were created. California was part of an unorganized territory when it became a state.

Name Location Area Population Capital Note
 Palmyra Atoll Polynesia & North Pacific 12 km2 (5 sq mi) 20 As of 2007, partly privately owned by The Nature Conservancy with much of the rest owned by the federal government and managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.[28][29] It is an archipelago of about 50 small islands with about 1.56 sq mi (4.0 km2) of land area, lying about 1,000 miles (1,600 km) south of Oahu, Hawaii. The atoll was acquired by the U.S. through the annexation of the Republic of Hawaii in 1898. When the Territory of Hawaii was incorporated on April 30, 1900, Palmyra Atoll was incorporated as part of that territory. When the State of Hawaii was admitted to the Union in 1959, however, the Act of Congress explicitly separated Palmyra Atoll from the newly federated state. Palmyra remained an incorporated territory, but received no new organized government.[30]

There are also territories that have the status of being incorporated but that are not organized:

  • U.S. coastal waters out to 12 nautical miles (14 mi; 22 km) offshore (except state waters extend a minimum of 3 nautical miles (3.5 mi; 5.6 km) offshore).

Unincorporated organized territories[edit]

Name Location Area Population Capital Note
 Guam Micronesia & North Pacific 543 km2 (210 sq mi) 159,358 Hagåtña Territory since 1898, Guam is the home of Naval Base Guam and Andersen Air Force Base.
 Northern Mariana Islands Micronesia & North Pacific 463.63 km2 (179 sq mi) 53,467 Saipan Commonwealth since 1978; formerly a United Nations Trust Territory under the administration of the U.S.
 Puerto Rico Caribbean & North Atlantic 9,104 km2 (3,515 sq mi) 3,667,084 San Juan Unincorporated territory since 1898, a commonwealth since 1952. In November 2008, a U.S. District Court judge ruled that a sequence of Congressional actions have had the cumulative effect of changing Puerto Rico's status from "unincorporated" to "incorporated."[31] However, the issue has not finished making its way through the court system;[32] and the U.S. government still refers to Puerto Rico as unincorporated.[33] See the Puerto Rico section in the article, Organized incorporated territories of the United States, and also the article, Political status of Puerto Rico.
 United States Virgin Islands Caribbean & North Atlantic 346.36 km2 (134 sq mi) 106,405 Charlotte Amalie Purchased by the U.S. from Denmark in 1917.

Unincorporated unorganized territories[edit]

Name Location Area Population Capital Note
 American Samoa Polynesia & South Pacific 197.1 km2 (76.1 sq mi) 55,519 Pago Pago Territory since 1898. Locally self-governing under a constitution last revised in 1967.[35]
Baker Island[a] North Pacific Ocean 2.1 km2 (0.81 sq mi) 0 Claimed under the Guano Islands Act on October 28, 1856.[36][37] Formally annexed on May 13, 1936, and placed under the jurisdiction of the United States Department of the Interior.[38]
Flag of Howland Island (local).jpg Howland Island[a] North Pacific Ocean 4.5 km2 (1.7 sq mi) 0 Claimed under the Guano Islands Act on December 3, 1858.[36][37] Formally annexed on May 13, 1936, and placed under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Department of the Interior.[38]
Jarvis Island[a] Polynesia & south Pacific Ocean 4.75 km2 (1.83 sq mi) 0 Claimed under the Guano Islands Act on October 28, 1856.[36][37] Formally annexed on May 13, 1936, and placed under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Department of the Interior.[38]
 Johnston Atoll[a] North Pacific Ocean 2.67 km2 (1.03 sq mi) 40 Last used by the U.S. Department of Defense in 2004
Kingman Reef[a] Polynesia & north Pacific Ocean 18 km2 (6.9 sq mi) 0 Claimed under the Guano Islands Act on February 8, 1860.[36][37] Formally annexed on May 10, 1922, and placed under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Department of the Navy on December 29, 1934.[39]
 Wake Island[a] Micronesia & north Pacific Ocean 7.4 km2 (2.9 sq mi) 188 Territory since 1898; host to the Wake Island Airfield administered by the U.S. Air Force; claimed by the Marshall Islands.[40]
 Midway Atoll North Pacific Ocean 6.2 km2 (2.4 sq mi) 4 Territory since 1859; primarily a wildlife refuge inhabited only by civilian contractors; previously under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Department of the Navy.
 Navassa Island Caribbean Sea & north Atlantic Ocean 5.4 km2 (2.1 sq mi) 0 Territory since 1857. Claimed by Haiti.
Serranilla Bank Caribbean Sea & north Atlantic Ocean 350 km2 (140 sq mi) 0 Administered by Colombia; site of a naval garrison. Claimed by the U.S (since 1879 under the Guano Islands Act), Honduras, and Jamaica. A claim by Nicaragua was resolved in 2012 in favor of Colombia by the International Court of Justice, although the U.S. was not a party to that case and does not recognize the jurisdiction of the ICJ.[41]
Bajo Nuevo Bank Caribbean Sea & north Atlantic Ocean 110 km2 (42 sq mi) 0 Administered by Colombia. Claimed by the U.S. (under the Guano Islands Act) and Jamaica. A claim by Nicaragua was resolved in 2012 in favor of Colombia by the International Court of Justice, although the U.S. was not a party to that case and does not recognize the jurisdiction of the ICJ.[41]
  1. ^ a b c d e f These six territories, together with Palmyra Atoll, comprise the Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument.

Extraterritorial jurisdiction[edit]

The U.S. exercises some degree of extraterritorial jurisdiction in overseas areas, such as:

Associated states[edit]

The United States exercises a high degree of control in defense, funding, and government services in:

Classification of former U.S. territories and administered areas[edit]

Former incorporated organized territories of the United States[edit]

See Organized incorporated territories of the United States for a complete list.

Former unincorporated territories of the United States (incomplete)[edit]

Former unincorporated territories of the United States under military government[edit]

  •  Puerto Rico (April 11, 1899 – May 1, 1900): civil government operations began
  •  Philippines (August 14, 1898[44] – July 4, 1901): civil government operations began
  •  Guam (April 11, 1899 – July 1, 1950): civil government operations began

Areas formerly administered by the United States[edit]

Other zones[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Definition of Terms - 1120 Acquisition of U.S. Nationality in U.S. Territories and Possessions" (PDF). U.S. Department of State Foreign Affairs Manual Volume 7- Consular Affairs. U.S. Department of State. 
  2. ^ "Definitions of Insular Area Political Organizations". U.S. Department of the Interior. 
  3. ^ Bartholomew H. Sparrow (2005). Sanford Levinson; Bartholomew H. Sparrow, eds. The Louisiana Purchase and American Expansion, 1803–1898. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 232. ISBN 0-7425-4984-4. Retrieved December 2, 2012. 
  4. ^ a b 7 FAM 1112. State Department Foreign Affairs Manual (FAM) 7-Consular Affairs. Viewed January 12, 2016.
  5. ^ Executive Order 13423 Sec. 9. (l). "The "United States" when used in a geographical sense, means the fifty states, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the Northern Mariana Islands, and associated territorial waters and airspace."
  6. ^ Nativity by Place of Birth and Citizenship Status, United States Census, 2010.
  7. ^ a b 7 FAM 1111(b). State Department Foreign Affairs Manual (FAM) 7-Consular Affairs. However, as reported in Samoa lawsuit, Newsweek, July 13, 2012. viewed December 16, 2012.
  8. ^ U.S. General Accounting Office, U.S. Insular Areas: Application of the U.S. Constitution, November 1997, pp. 8, 14, 27, viewed September 3, 2015.
  9. ^ U.S. Department of State, Common Core Document of the United States of America, report to the United Nations Committee on Human Rights, December 30, 2011, sec. 82, 83, 84, 85, 86, 87, viewed September 3, 2015. American Samoa, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands appear on the United Nations' list of non-self-governing territories, viewed September 3, 2015.
  10. ^ a b House Learn webpage. Viewed January 26, 2013.
  11. ^ Application of the U.S. Constitution, GAO Report, U.S. Insular Areas, November 1997, (p. 26–28).
  12. ^ [1] viewed August 10, 2015.
  13. ^ The Green Papers, 2016 Presidential primaries, caucuses and conventions, viewed September 3, 2015.
  14. ^ U.S. State Department, Dependencies and Areas of Special Sovereignty. The chart, under "Sovereignty", lists five places under U.S. sovereignty that are administered by a local "Administrative Center" with "Short form names": American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands, U.S.
  15. ^ Act of Admission, § 2, Pub. L. No. 86-3, 73 Stat. 4 (March 18, 1959).
  16. ^ U.S. General Accounting Office Report, U.S. Insular Areas: application of the U.S. Constitution, November 1997, p. 1, 6, 39n. viewed April 6, 2016.
  17. ^ U.S. State Department, Dependencies and Areas of Special Sovereignty Chart, under "Sovereignty", lists nine places under U.S. sovereignty thar are administered by the U.S. Department of the Interior: Baker Island, Howland Island, Jarvis Island, Johnston Atoll, Kingman Reef, the Midway Islands, Navassa Island, Palmyra Atoll, and Wake Island.
  18. ^ "Definitions of insular area political organizations". Office of Insular Affairs, U.S. Department of the Interior. Retrieved September 30, 2017. 
  19. ^ "Consejo de Salud Playa de Ponce v. Johnny Rullan, Secretary of Health of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, pages 6–7" (PDF). United States District Court for the District of Puerto Rico. Retrieved February 4, 2010. 
  20. ^ "The Insular Cases: The Establishment of a Regime of Political Apartheid (2007) Juan R. Torruella" (PDF). Retrieved February 5, 2010. 
  21. ^ a b "Balzac v. People of Porto Rico". U.S. Supreme Court. April 10, 1922. Retrieved October 4, 2017 – via FindLaw. 
  22. ^ "Glidden Company v. Zdanok". U.S. Supreme Court. June 25, 1962. Retrieved October 4, 2017 – via FindLaw. 
  23. ^ a b c "Rassmussen v. U.S.". U.S. Supreme Court. April 10, 1905. Retrieved October 4, 2017 – via FindLaw. 
  24. ^ Juan R. Torruella (2007). "The Insular Cases: The Establishment of a Regime of Political Apartheid" (PDF). pp. 318–319. Retrieved February 7, 2010. 
  25. ^ "Dorr v. U.S.". U.S. Supreme Court. May 31, 1904. Retrieved October 4, 2017 – via FindLaw. 
  26. ^ a b c "Downes v. Bidwell". U.S. Supreme Court. May 27, 1901. Retrieved October 4, 2017 – via FindLaw. 
  27. ^ U.S. Const. art. IV, § 3, cl. 2 ("The Congress shall have Power to dispose of and make all needful Rules and Regulations respecting the Territory or other Property belonging to the United States...").
  28. ^ "AUSTRALIA-OCEANIA :: UNITED STATES PACIFIC ISLAND WILDLIFE REFUGES (TERRITORIES OF THE US)". The World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency. 
  29. ^ "DOI Office of Insular Affairs (OIA) - Palmyra Atoll". 31 October 2007. 
  30. ^ "Palmyra Atoll". U.S. Department of the Interior Office of Insular Affairs. Retrieved 23 June 2010. 
  31. ^ Consejo de Salud Playa Ponce v. Johnny Rullan, p.28: "The Congressional incorporation of Puerto Rico throughout the past century has extended the entire Constitution to the island ...."
  32. ^ Hon. Gustavo A. Gelpi, "The Insular Cases: A Comparative Historical Study of Puerto Rico, Hawai'i, and the Philippines", The Federal Lawyer, March/April 2011. http://www.aspira.org/files/legal_opinion_on_pr_insular_cases.pdf p. 25: "In light of the [Supreme Court] ruling in Boumediene, in the future the Supreme Court will be called upon to reexamine the Insular Cases doctrine as applied to Puerto Rico and other U.S. territories."
  33. ^ accessed 26 January 2013: "Puerto Rico is a self-governing, unincorporated territory of the United States located in the Caribbean".
  34. ^ IBP USA (2009), SAMOA American Country Study Guide: Strategic Information and Developments, Int'l Business Publications, pp. 49–64, ISBN 978-1-4387-4187-1, retrieved 2011-10-20 
  35. ^ The revised constitution was approved on June 2, 1967 by Stewart L. Udall, then U.S. Secretary of the Interior, under authority granted on June 29, 1951. It became effective on July 1, 1967.[34]
  36. ^ a b c d Moore, John Bassett (1906). "A Digest of International Law as Embodied in Diplomatic Discussions, Treaties and Other International Agreements, International Awards, the Decisions of Municipal Courts, and the Writings of Jurists and Especially in Documents, Published and Unpublished, Issued by Presidents and Secretaries of State of the United States, the Opinions of the Attorneys-General, and the Decisions of Courts, Federal and State". Washington, D. C.: U.S. Government Printing Office. pp. 566–580. 
  37. ^ a b c d "Acquisition Process of Insular Areas". United States Department of the Interior Office of Insular Affairs. Retrieved July 15, 2016. 
  38. ^ a b c Exec. Order No. 7368 (May 13, 1936; in English) President of the United States
  39. ^ "Kingman Reef". Office of Insular Affairs. Retrieved July 15, 2016. 
  40. ^ "Wake Island". The World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency. 
  41. ^ a b International Court of Justice (2012). "Territorial and maritime dispute (Nicaragua vs Colombia)" (PDF). Retrieved 29 June 2013. 
  42. ^ "Agreement Between the United States and Cuba for the Lease of Lands for Coaling and Naval stations". The Avalon Project at Yale Law School. February 23, 1903. Retrieved 2 April 2008. 
  43. ^ Michael Ratner; Ellen Ray (2004). Guantanamo: What the World Should Know. Chelsea Green Publishing. p. xiv;. ISBN 978-1-931498-64-7. 
  44. ^ Zaide, Sonia M. (1994). The Philippines: A Unique Nation. All-Nations Publishing Co., Inc. p. 279. ISBN 9716420714. Retrieved October 20, 2011. 
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