Everything you need to know about Puerto Rico's possible statehood - CNNPolitics
Puerto Rico (Spanish for "Rich Port"), officially the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and briefly Puerto Rico's future political status has consistently been a matter of . With no significant industries or large-scale agricultural production as yet, .. Rican Nationalist Party, demanded a change in relations with the United States. The United States won control of Puerto Rico in following the their legal relationship with the federal government remained the same. out on top: in a ballot with two separate questions, a majority voted both in favour of changing the island's status and for becoming a state if a change did occur. Over a century ago, the U.S. prevented Puerto Rico from gaining autonomy. that asunder, paving the way for Puerto Rico's nonvoting territory status today. touring the last phase of her economic survey in the West Indies.
Other nearby islands, like Cuba, Saint-Domingue, and Guadeloupe, attracted more of the slave trade than Puerto Rico, probably because of greater agricultural interests in those islands, on which colonists had developed large sugar plantations and had the capital to invest in the Atlantic slave trade.
With no significant industries or large-scale agricultural production as yet, enslaved and free communities lodged around the few littoral settlements, particularly around San Juan, also forming lasting Afro-creole communities.How Puerto Rico Became a U.S. Territory - US 101
Meanwhile, in the island's interior, there developed a mixed and independent peasantry that relied on a subsistence economy. By the end of the 16th century, the Spanish Empire was diminishing and, in the face of increasing raids from European competitors, the colonial administration throughout the Americas fell into a "bunker mentality".
Imperial strategists and urban planners redesigned port settlements into military posts with the objective of protecting Spanish territorial claims and ensuring the safe passing of the king's silver-laden Atlantic Fleet to the Iberian Peninsula. San Juan served as an important port-of-call for ships driven across the Atlantic by its powerful trade winds.
Puerto Rico's Relationship with the United States? - US History Scene
The colony's seat of government was on the forested Islet of San Juan and for a time became one of the most heavily fortified settlements in the Spanish Caribbean earning the name of the "Walled City". Learning from Francis Drake 's previous failures herehe circumvented the cannons of the castle of San Felipe del Morro and quickly brought his 17 ships into the San Juan Bay.
He then occupied the port and attacked the city while the population hurried for shelter behind the Morro's moat and high battlements. Historians consider this event the worst attack on San Juan.
Though the Dutch set the village on fire, they failed to conquer the Morro, and its batteries pounded their troops and ships until Hendricksz deemed the cause lost. Hendricksz's expedition eventually helped propel a fortification frenzy. Urban planning responded to the needs of keeping the colony in Spanish hands.
Late colonial period Hacienda La Fortuna. A sugar mill complex in Puerto Rico painted by Francisco Oller in Brooklyn Museum During the late 16th and early 17th centuries, Spain concentrated its colonial efforts on the more prosperous mainland North, Central, and South American colonies.
With the advent of the lively Bourbon Dynasty in Spain in the s, the island of Puerto Rico began a gradual shift to more imperial attention.
More roads began connecting previously isolated inland settlements to coastal cities, and coastal settlements like Arecibo, Mayaguez, and Ponce began acquiring importance of their own, separate from San Juan.
By the end of the 18th century, merchant ships from an array of nationalities threatened the tight regulations of the Mercantilist system, which turned each colony solely toward the European metropole and limited contact with other nations. Slavers, which had made but few stops on the island before, began selling more enslaved Africans to growing sugar and coffee plantations. On April 17,Sir Ralph Abercromby 's fleet invaded the island with a force of 6,—13, men,  which included German soldiers and Royal Marines and 60 to 64 ships.
Fierce fighting continued for the next days with Spanish troops. Both sides suffered heavy losses. By the time independence movements in the larger Spanish colonies gained success, new waves of loyal creole immigrants began to arrive in Puerto Rico, helping to tilt the island's political balance toward the Crown. These parliamentary and constitutional reforms were in force from toand again from to The most immediate result of the extension of U.
When he returned to Puerto Rico in the early s, however, he saw that this was not the case. Read about Governor E. It was clear to Albizu and others that the conferral of U. Most Puerto Ricans had hoped that President Roosevelt, in choosing a new Governor, would appoint a New Deal reformer that would bring economic recovery to the islands.
Francis Riggs in February of The two men never faced trial; they were killed while in police custody. Pedro Albizu Campos and several other leaders of the Nationalist Party were arrested on April 3, and charged with conspiracy to overthrow the U. Albizu would remain imprisoned in Atlanta until The assassination of a white U. In an unlikely turn of events, the Riggs assassination actually put legislation for Puerto Rican independence on the table for the first time, even if it was fueled by revenge.
Tydings, a personal friend of the deceased Colonel Riggs, was offering independence, but at a price: Tydings made it clear that his friendship with Riggs was his motivation for proposing such harsh terms. That is what independence, as it has been offered, means. On March 21, this came to a head in Ponce, Puerto Rico.
Police had initially authorized a Nationalist Party parade, and then opened fire on the crowd, leaving eighteen people dead. Machine gun bullet holes in the wall. December — Library of Congress ] By the end of the s, nothing had been resolved in Puerto Rico.
So, he finally removed the repressive Blanton Winship from office and replaced him with the more palatable William Leahy. Global powers, led by the United States, had decided that the age of empires was over. They each send a delegate to the House who possesses all powers of a representative besides voting rightslike the ability to debate legislation or sit on committees. The territories also send delegates to political conventions, such as those to nominate presidential candidates.
However, the territories have no electoral votes in the presidential election. Despite their inability to vote on federal issues, Puerto Ricans have been U. How Puerto Rico became a U. Shortly thereafter, Congress passed a bill declaring Puerto Rico an " unorganized territory.
An ambiguous Supreme Court ruling a year later defined Puerto Rico as an unincorporated territory. Its residents received some constitutional protections, but they were not considered part of the United States and did not receive full constitutional rights. It also made it easier for the U.