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Antigua and Barbuda History Timeline


  • (1493) Christopher Columbus visited Antigua, named it after Church of Santa Maria de la Antigua in Seville, Spain
  • (1632) English settlers from St. Kitts colonized Antigua
  • (1667) In accordance with Treaty of Breda, France formally ended claim to Antigua
  • (1674) Sugar planter from Barbados, Christopher Codrington, set up sugar plantation in Antigua
  • (1685) Codrington leased island of Barbuda from British crown; African slaves imported to grow tobacco crops, sugarcane on plantations
  • (1834) Antigua slaves emancipated
  • (1860) Barbuda reverted back to British crown
  • (1871-1956) Antigua and Barbuda administrated together as part of the Leeward Islands federation
  • (1946-71) Vere Bird's Antigua Labor Party (APL) held power
  • (1958-62) Antigua and Barbuda part of British-sponsored West Indies Federation
  • (1967) Antigua and Barbuda became self-governing state within the British Commonwealth; Britain retained control of defense and foreign affairs; Antigua hosted first Antigua sailing week
  • (1969) Barbuda separatist movement began
  • (1971) Progressive Labor Movement, George Walter, beat APL, Vere Bird, in the general elections; George Walter replaced Vere Bird as prime minister
  • (1972) Sugar industry closed
  • (1976) ALP, Vere Bird, returned to power
  • (1981) Antigua and Barbuda gained independence from Britain
  • (1983) Antigua and Barbuda supported US invasion of Grenada
  • (1993) Vere Bird resigned as prime minister, replaced by son Lester Bird
  • (1994) ALP, Lester Bird, won general elections
  • (1995) Riots erupted against new taxes; Hurricane Luis hit islands, claimed 75% of all homes
1900s continued
  • (1998) Government closed down six Russian-owned banks accused of money laundering
  • (1999) ALP won general elections again; Hurricane Jose's direct hit caused extensive damage
  • (2001) Antigua fully cooperative with multi-national Financial Action Task Force against money laundering
  • (2004) Baldwin Spencer, leader of United Progressive Party, sworn in as prime minister; parliament passed anti-corruption bill
  • (2005) Personal income tax re-introduced
  • (2007) World Trade Organization ordered US to pay compensation to Antigua over online gambling trade dispute
  • (2009) Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer led United Progressive Party to victory again; Leroy King, Antigua's chief financial regulator, dismissed after being charged with helping Texas billionaire Allen Stanford, Antigua's single largest private investor, in fraud scheme coverup

Antigua and Barbuda's Information

Flag of Antigua and Barbuda
Land Area 443 km2
Total Area 443km2 (#181)
Population 93,581 (#196)
Population Density 211.24/km2
Government Type Parliamentary Democracy (Parliament) Under A Constitutional Monarchy; A Commonwealth Realm
GDP (PPP) $2.17 Billion
GDP Per Capita $24,100
Currency Dollar (XCD)
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