Solomon Islands History
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History[edit | edit source]
The first European to visit the islands was the Spanish navigator Álvaro de Mendaña de Neira, coming from Peru in 1568.
Missionaries began visiting the Solomons in the mid-19th century. The United Kingdom declared a protectorate over the southern Solomons in June 1893 and in 1898 and 1899, more outlying islands were added to the protectorate. Missionaries settled in the Solomons under the protectorate, converting most of the population to Christianity.
With the outbreak of the Second World War most planters and traders were evacuated to Australia and most cultivation ceased. Some of the most intense fighting of the war occurred in the Solomons. Local councils were established in the 1950s as the islands stabilized from the aftermath of the Second World War. A new constitution was established in 1970 and elections were held, although the constitution was contested and a new one was created in 1974.
Following the independence of neighbouring Papua New Guinea from Australia in 1975, the Solomon Islands gained self-government in 1976. Independence was granted on 7 July 1978.
Timeline[edit | edit source]
1500 - Mendana sails from Peru searching for the treasures of King Solomon, lands on the island
1589 - Mendana starts a colony on his second voyage, which does not succeed
1893 - The southern Solomon Islands become a British protectorate
1898 - 1899 Other parts become a British protectorate
1900 - German rights to some of the northern islands are ceded to the British
1944 - Guadalcanal and New Georgia are fought over in WWII
1976 - Self government is granted
1978 - Full independence is granted