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History of the Netherlands Antilles

From Academic Kids

The Netherlands Antilles were colonized by the Netherlands in the 17th century. They were once the center of the Caribbean slave trade.

The island of Curaçao was hard hit by the abolition of slavery in 1863. Its prosperity (and that of neighboring Aruba) was restored in the early 20th century with the construction of oil refineries to service the newly discovered Venezuelan oil fields. The island of Sint Maarten is shared with France (whose northern portion is named Saint-Martin and is a part of Guadeloupe, though there have been movements to become a separate overseas territory). The Netherlands Antilles remain part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

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