Saint Vincent (island)


Saint Vincent (island)

:"You may be looking for St. Vincent Island, Florida

Infobox Islands
name = Saint Vincent


image caption = Villa, St. Vincent, 1890s
image size =
locator

map_custom = yes
native name =
native name link =
nickname =
location = Caribbean Sea
coordinates = coord|13|15|N|61|12|W|display=inline
archipelago = Windward Islands
total islands =
major islands =
area = convert|345|km2|sqmi|abbr=on
length = convert|18|mi|km|abbr=on
width = convert|11|mi|km|abbr=on
highest mount = La Soufrière
elevation = convert|4048|ft|m|abbr=on
country = Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
country admin divisions title =
country admin divisions =
country admin divisions title 1 =
country admin divisions 1 =
country admin divisions title 2 =
country admin divisions 2 =
country largest city = Kingstown
country largest city population = 19300
population = 120,000
population as of =
density = 347.83
ethnic groups = Black 56%, East Indians 21%, Carib Amerindian 3%, Mixed Race 10%, Other 10%
additional info =

Saint Vincent is a volcanic island in the Caribbean, 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 . [cite book| first=Jan|last=Rogozinski | year= 1999| title= A Brief History of the Caribbean| edition= Revised| publisher=Facts on File, Inc.| location=New York| pages= pp 358–359| id= ISBN 0-8160-3811-2 ]

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 resides in the other five main towns of Layou, Barrouallie, Chateaubelair, Georgetown, and Calliaqua.

People

The people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines are called Vincentians. Most Vincentians are the descendants of African slaves (66%) brought to work on the plantations. There also are a few white descendants of English & French colonists, as well as some East Indians (6%), Carib Indians (2%), and a sizable minority of mixed race (19%). The population of the island 2005 was 119,100 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 was at 88.1% in 2004. Infant mortality 14 per 1,000 live births. Life expectancy for men stands at 72 years, with 75.8 years for women. The active workforce is 55,531, and unemployment is at 12%. [cite web |url=http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/2345.htm
title= Government of Saint Vincent |accessdate=2008-29-01
]

Geography of the island

Saint Vincent island is 18 miles long and 11 miles wide and is located 100 miles west of Barbados. It is dominated by the 4,048-foot-high, active volcano, called La Soufriere, which erupted violently in 1812 and 1902. The most recent eruption was on "Black Friday" [which was actually the Christian 'Good Friday' for that year] , April 13, 1979. The island is mountainous and well-forested. Saint Vincent island belongs to the Lesser Antilles chain. Its territory has a total surface of 345 km², and the coasts measure about 84 km. The island is tropical humid, with an average of between 18 and 31 °C depending on the altitude.

Mainland St Vincent is one of the few places on Earth that can boast about having black-sand beaches and white-sand in the same countryFact|date=August 2008. There are places where there is just a rock that borders the black-sand beach from the white-sand beach. The black sand, which was formed by the action of the volcano, is said to be able to provide one of the minerals that is needed by the human body. The majority of the beaches on the mainland have black sand (more than 95%), while all of the beaches in the Grenadines have white sand.

For many years the black sand was used in the building industry. During recent times, because of the destruction to the coastal areas, the government has restricted the amount of sand that can be removed from the beaches, and the beaches from which sand could be removed. This sand is still used in the construction of pitched roads, as it blends in nicely with the colour of the asphalt used for road constructionFact|date=August 2008.

Government and politics

The capital of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is Kingstown. St. Vincent's government is a parliamentary independent sovereign state within the Commonwealth of Nations. The executive branch of government is divided in: the executive-governor general (representing Queen Elizabeth II, head of state), the prime minister (head of government) and the cabinet. The current prime minister is Dr Ralph E Gonsalves. The legislative branch of government is a divided 15-member elected House of Assembly and six-member appointed Senate. The judicial branch of government is divided into district courts, the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (High Court and Court of Appeals), with final appeal to the Privy Council in London. The parliamentary term of office is five years, although the prime minister may call elections at any time. The most important political parties are " The New Democratic Party (NDP)",and " The Unity Labor Party (ULP)".

Footnotes

[cite web |url=http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/2345.htm
title= Government of Saint Vincent |accessdate=2008-29-01
]

ee also

*1898 Windward Islands Hurricane

External links

* [http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/2345.htm US Department of State Profile]
* [http://pdba.georgetown.edu/Constitutions/Vincent/stvincent79.html St. Vincent and the Grenadines / San Vicente y Las Granadinas Constitution of 1979]
* [http://go.hrw.com/atlas/norm_htm/stvncent.htm Map]


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