The Islands of Turks and Caicos – The Long Road to Independence
The islands of Turks and Caicos are found in the Atlantic Ocean’s Lucayan Archipelago in the West Indies. A British Overseas Territory, the islands feature a total area of 430 square kilometers, and are primarily known for their many tourist attractions and resorts.
The islands were first sighted by European explorers in 1512, however, their history is much longer than that. Scholars believe that Taino people from Hispaniola moved to the islands as early as 500 AD. When the Spanish found the islands in the 1500s, they took many of their inhabitants as slaves along with the people from the southern Bahamas Islands.
After Britain prohibited slave trade in the early 19th century, the islands became part of a separate colony under a council president. After Turks and Caicos also became part of Canada for a short time, the islands finally received their own governor when the Bahamas became independent in 1973.