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Colombia History Timeline

1500s
  • (1525) Spain began conquest of Colombia
  • (1535) First permanent settlement in South America founded at Santa Marta
  • (1536-1538) Gonzalo Jimenez de Quesada led expedition into Andes
  • (1538) Spain established settlement of Santa Fe de Bogotá, current capital
  • (1550) African slaves shipped to work on Colombian plantations
  • (1564) Spanish government appointed president to govern Colombian colony
1700s - 1800s
  • (1700) Viceroyalty of New Granada consisted of Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Panama
  • (1810) Colombia declared independence from Spain
  • (1814) Spain sent troops to South America to suppress uprising of colonists
  • (1819) Simon Bolivar defeated Spanish at Battle of Boyaca; Republic of Gran Colombia formed with Ecuador, Panama, Venezuela
  • (1830) Federation of Gran Colombia dissolved
  • (1853) Slavery abolished
  • (1891) Colombian National Police created
  • (1899-1902) Civil War of the thousand days
1900s
  • (1903) Panama seceded from Colombia with USA backing; allowed USA to build Panama Canal
  • (1910) Astronomer Julio Garavito Armero discovered crater on moon's far side (Garavito crater)
  • (1922) USA paid Colombia $25 million for loss of Panama
  • (1939-1945) Colombia helped USA keep Panama Canal open during World War II
  • (1948-1957) 250,000-300,000 killed in civil war
  • (1989) USA supplied government with military equipment to help rid Colombia of drug dealers
  • (1993) Pablo Escobar, drug cartel leader, shot dead after trying to evade police
2000s
  • (2000) "Plan Colombia" won almost $1 billion (US) in military aid to fight drug dealers, rebels
  • (2001) FARC rebels freed 359 police, troops in exchange for 14 captured rebels
  • (2002) Peace talks broke off with FARC rebels after 3 tortuous years
  • (2003) Car bomb killed six, injured 11 in Bogotá
  • (2004) USA President George W. Bush visited Cartagenade de Indias
  • (2005) FARC launched massive attack in remote village of San Marino
  • (2006) USA, Colombia reached free trade agreement after nearly two years
  • (2007) The Nevado del Huila volcano erupted after 500 years
  • (2007) Colombia's navy made largest drug seizure in nation's history - nearly 27 tons of cocaine buried along Pacific coast.
  • (2008) Hundreds of thousands of Colombians wearing white T-shirts marched at home, abroad to demand that FARC, the country's largest rebel group, stop kidnapping people, release those it held
  • (2009) Colombia's anti-narcotics police seized 5.7 tons of cocaine and base in jungle laboratory run by Black Eagles, the largest new generation paramilitary group
  • (2010) Air, ground assaults on two rebel camps killed 18 insurgents and captured 13

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