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Puerto Rico

Populated for centuries by aboriginal peoples, the island was claimed by the Spanish Crown in 1493 following COLUMBUS' second voyage to the Americas. In 1898, after 400 years of colonial rule that saw the indigenous population nearly exterminated and African slave labor introduced, Puerto Rico was ceded to the US as a result of the Spanish-American War. Puerto Ricans were granted US citizenship in 1917. Popularly-elected governors have served since 1948. In 1952, a constitution was enacted providing for internal self government. In plebiscites held in 1967, 1993, and 1998, voters chose not to alter the existing political status.

Languages & Population

Approximate Population: 3,944,259

Nationality (Noun): Puerto Rican(s) (US citizens)

Nationality (Adjective): Puerto Rican

Official Language(s): Spanish, English

Major Languages Spoken: Creole, English, Spanish

Map of Puerto Rico

Country Facts

Country Name (long form): Commonwealth of Puerto Rico

Country Name (short form): Puerto Rico

Country Name (local long form): Puerto Rico

Country Name (local short form): Puerto Rico

Name of Capital: San Juan

UTC Time Difference (from capital): UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

Countries Near by, and Bordering Puerto Rico: Virgin Islands, British Virgin Islands, Dominican Republic

Land Area: 8870 sq km

Water Area: 4921 sq km

Comparative Area: slightly less than three times the size of Rhode Island

Coastline: 501 km

National Holiday: US Independence Day, 4 July (1776); Puerto Rico Constitution Day, 25 July (1952)

International Phone Code: -786

Currency Code: US dollar (USD)

Internet Country Code: .pr

US Embassy Location: none (territory of the US with commonwealth status)

US Embassy Mailing Address: none


Puerto Rico flag

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