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History of Montserrat

From Academic Kids

The history of Montserrat

Geological history

European colonisation

On 3 November 1493 on his second voyage, Christopher Columbus sailed past the island and named it Santa Maria de Montserrate after the "Blessed Virgin of the Monastery of Montserrat" in Spain. Despite claiming the island, the Spanish did not colonise it and English and French interest grew.

Charles I granted a patent to allow colonisation in 1625. The first european colony was established in 1631 when Irish Catholics were forcibly moved to there and Antigua to prevent them from siding against English protestants on St Kitts.

After Oliver Cromwell's defeat of the Irish at the Battle of Drogheda, Irish political prisoners were transferred to Montserrat. A new fort at Kinsale was built.

In 1655 Cromwell himself was entertained on Montserrat. Montserrat was hit by hurricanes in 1657 and 1658.

Montserrat was a province of the West Indies Federation from 1958 until 1962, when it reverted back to a colony of the UK.

The Soufriere Hills volcano erupted starting on July 18, 1995 making most o the island unihabitable and displacing 2/3 of its population. The UK Government sent HM Ships Liverpool and Newcastle to help evacuate the island.

See also: Montserrat

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