Saint Vincent (island)

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Saint Vincent is a volcanic island in the Caribbean. It is the largest island of the chain called Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. It is located in the Caribbean Sea, between Saint Lucia and Grenada. It is composed of partially submerged volcanic mountains. La Soufrière is still an active volcano .[1]

The territory was disputed between France and the United Kingdom in the 18th century, before being ceded to the British in 1783. It gained independence on October 27, 1979. Approximately 120,000 people live on the island. Kingstown (population 19,300) is the chief town. The rest of the population is dispersed along the coastal strip, which includes the other five main towns of Layou, Barrouallie, Chateaubelair, Georgetown, and Calliaqua, and the Marriaqua Valley.

Contents

People

The people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines are called Vincentians. Afro-Vincentians There are also a few white descendants of English and French colonists, as well as a small number of Indo-Vincentians, descendants of indentured workers from India, and there is a sizable minority of mixed race (19%). The population of the island in 2008 was 118,000 and the annual growth rate is 0.5%. The main religions are Anglican (47%), Methodist (28%), Roman Catholic (13%), other Protestant denominations, Seventh-day Adventist, and Hindu. Adult literacy in 2004 was at 88.1%. Infant mortality in 2006 was 17 per 1,000 live births, and life expectancy for men stood at 69 years, with 74 years for women. The active workforce in 2006 was 57,695, and unemployment in 2004 was at 12%.[2]

History

Long before Christopher Columbus spotted this island during his third voyage in 1498, it had been called Hairouna by the Caribs. Columbus named the island St. Vincent, since it was discovered on 22 January, the feast day of the patron saint of Portugal, Vincent of Saragossa.

It is speculated though by some Vincentians[who?] that the date given above is wrong. Some say that, although the island was named after Vincent of Saragossa it was not discovered on his feast day because on that date Columbus was nowhere near this island[citation needed].

Geography of the island

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