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History[edit | edit source]
Aruba (/əˈruːbə/ ə-ROO-bə; Dutch: [aːˈrubaː], Papiamento: [aˈruba]) is an island and a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in the southern Caribbean Sea. Together with Bonaire and Curaçao, Aruba forms a group referred to as the ABC islands. Aruba and the other Dutch islands in the Caribbean are often called the Dutch Caribbean.
Aruba is one of the four countries that form the Kingdom of the Netherlands, along with the Netherlands, Curaçao, and Sint Maarten; the citizens of these countries are all Dutch nationals. Aruba has no administrative subdivisions, but, for census purposes, is divided into eight regions. Its capital is Oranjestad.
The Spanish took possession of the Leeward group, in 1527 but in 1634 the three islands passed to the Netherlands with which they have remained except for two short periods during the Napoleonic Wars when the British ruled at Willemstad. Curaçao, the center of Caribbean slave trade during the colonial period, lost much of its economic importance after emancipation of the slaves in 1863. In 1986 Aruba was constitutionally separated from the Netherlands Antilles.
The Winward group, St. Maarten, St., St. Eustatius, and Saba, also considered a part of the Netherlands Antilles, and changed hands often during the 17th and 18th centuries. All three have been under uninterrupted Dutch rule since the beginning of the 19th century. As of 1954, the Netherlands Antilles is considered to be an autonomous part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.
Timeline[edit | edit source]
1527 - Spanish took possession of the Leeward group
1634 - Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao passed to the Netherlands and have remained
1954 - The Netherlands Antilles is considered to be an autonomous part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands