Portal:Puerto Rico
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Portal:Puerto Rico

The Puerto Rico Portal

Location of Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico (Spanish for 'Rich Port'; abbreviated PR; Taino: Boriken, Borinquen), officially the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico (Spanish: Estado Libre Asociado de Puerto Rico, lit.'Free Associated State of Puerto Rico') is a Caribbean island and unincorporated territory of the United States. It is located in the northeast Caribbean Sea, approximately 1,000 miles (1,600 km) southeast of Miami, Florida.

The Commonwealth is an archipelago among the Greater Antilles located between the Dominican Republic and the U.S. Virgin Islands; it includes the eponymous main island and several smaller islands, such as Mona, Culebra, and Vieques. It has roughly 3.2 million residents, and its capital and most populous city is San Juan. Spanish and English are the official languages of the executive branch of government, though Spanish predominates.

Originally populated by the indigenous Taíno people, Puerto Rico was colonized by Spain following the arrival of Christopher Columbus in 1493. It was contested by other European powers, but remained a Spanish possession for the next four centuries. Spanish rule led to the displacement and assimilation of the native population, the forced migration of African slaves, and settlement primarily from the Canary Islands and Andalusia. Within the Spanish Empire, Puerto Rico played a secondary but strategic role compared to wealthier colonies like Peru and New Spain. By the late 19th century, a distinct Puerto Rican identity began to emerge, centered around a fusion of indigenous, African, and European elements. In 1898, following the Spanish-American War, the United States acquired Puerto Rico.

Puerto Ricans have been U.S. citizens since 1917, and can move freely between the island and the mainland. However, as residents of an unincorporated territory, American citizens of Puerto Rico are disenfranchised at the national level, do not vote for the president or vice president, and generally do not pay federal income tax. However, in addition to the other 4 territories which send non-voting representatives to Congress, they do participate in presidential primaries. As it is not a state, Puerto Rico does not have a vote in the U.S. Congress, which governs it under the Puerto Rico Federal Relations Act of 1950. Puerto Rico is represented federally solely by one non-voting member of the House called a Resident Commissioner. The U.S. Congress approved a local constitution in 1952, allowing U.S. citizens residing on the Island to elect a governor. Puerto Rico's future political status has consistently been a matter of significant debate. (Full article...)

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First Supreme Court PR.JPG
Photo credit: Library of Congress

The first Supreme Court of Puerto Rico was established by the Foraker Act in 1900. A total of five members were appointed by U.S. President William McKinley, and two more for substituting resigning members.

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      Spain and       Puerto Rico.

Spanish settlement of Puerto Rico began in the early 1500s shortly after the formation of the Spanish state in 1493 (continuing until 1898 as a colony of Spain) and continues to the present day. On 25 September 1493, Christopher Columbus set sail on his second voyage with 17 ships and 1,200-1,500 men from Cádiz, Spain. On 19 November 1493 he landed on the island, naming it San Juan Bautista in honor of Saint John the Baptist.

There are two recognized Spanish immigration waves to Puerto Rico: the first arrived during the colonial period, and the second after the Spanish Civil War. There is a continuing but small number of Spanish-born residents on the island.

The Spanish heritage in Puerto Rico is palpable today in its customs and many traditions, language, and in the old and new architectural designs. (Full article...)

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Francisco Ramirez Medina
  • ... that Puerto Rico once had a President? Francisco Ramírez Medina, who participated in the Grito de Lares, was temporarily named President of the "Republic of Puerto Rico" on September 28, 1868 until the revolt was ended by the Spanish Colonial Government?.
  • ... that Puerto Rico had an official currency (coins) minted and in circulation in 1898, and that extant samples of these coins in pristine condition are extremely valuable?
  • ... that Puerto Rico had an its own postage stamps and that the first stamps inscribed "Puerto Rico" were issued in 1873?[1]
  • ... that the Intentona de Yauco of March 26, 1897, was the last major uprising against Spanish Colonial rule in the island?[2]
  • ... that the Baños de Coamo, a popular resort, was damaged by artillery bombardments during the Puerto Rican Campaign of the Spanish-American War?[3]
  • ... that Puerto Rico has been a territory of the United States since 1898?
  • ... that the first commercial silent film was presented in the "Teatro La Perla" in Ponce in 1901?[4]

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  1. ^ Rossiter, Stuart & John Flower. The Stamp Atlas. London: Macdonald, 1986, p.150-151. ISBN 0-356-10862-7
  2. ^ "Historia militar de Puerto Rico"; by Héctor Andrés Negroni (Author); Publisher: Sociedad Estatal Quinto Centenario (1992); Language: Spanish; ISBN-10: 8478441387; ISBN-13: 978-8478441389
  3. ^ Puerto Rico Herald
  4. ^ Historia del Cine en Puerto Rico


  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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