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Commonwealth of Kokomo

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Commonwealth of Kokomo
KO 2.png
Flag

Motto
Enrichment of the people
Anthem
Kokomo Love - The Star-Spangled Banner
KO 1

Map of Kokomo


Capital city Port Columbus
Official language(s) English
Demonym Kokomese
Government - President Barack Obama (D) - Governor Gilbert Warren (D)
Legislature Legislature of The Kokomo
Area claimed - Total 78.4 km²

30.270 mi²

- Water(%) negligible
Population - 2014 census 64,290
Currency United States dollar (USD)
Time zone Argentina Time Zone (UTC-03:00)


Kokomo, officially Commonwealth of Kokomo is an unincorporated territory of the United States northeast of Suriname and northwest of French Guiana. It is the only United States territory located in South America. It is 30.270 square miles (78.4 km²) in area and home to 64,290 inhabitants.

Etymology

The islands were first named "Cocoa men" by the British in reference to the slaves who harvested cocoa on the islands. In the Patwa dialect, it translated to Kokomon, a play on of "Koko" (cocoa) and "Mon" (man). Eventually "Kokomo" became the official name. The original Arawak name is now lost.

History

Pre-Columbian History

The Kokomo's first known inhabitants were Arawaks, believed to have come from northern South America around 200-400 AD. Numerous archaeological sites on the islands have produced specimens of the Arawaks' well-developed pottery. Caribs gradually replaced Arawaks during the period from 800 to 1000 BC.

Early Colonial History

The Kokomo was apparently discovered by Columbus in 1495, when he landed on a small island. He and his men gave it the name of "Isla de Isabella" after Queen Isabella of Spain. After circling the islands he came to a sheltered bay which he named "Bahia del Salvador". In 1501, settlers under Jorge Perez y Garcia founded a settlement on that bay, which is now Port Columbus. Spanish settlement was small and only about 300 people lived on the island. Soon after, they brought in slaves to work cocoa plantations in the interior. In 1700 French privateers started a small settlement on the southern coast (now Lyon Bay). France stepped in an took the island From Spain in 1703 without firing a shot. They abandoned the settlement at Port Columbus and concentrated at Lyon Bay. They founded the community of Gun Hill in 1707 and Terrebonne (now Orange Grove) in 1714. In 1791 Kokomo's black slaves staged an uprising and declared themselves independent, after seeing Haiti do the same. The Republic of The Kokomo (Republique du Kokome) lasted until 1792, when Jean du Lamier and a force of French soldiers defeated the slaves at the Battle of Bonaire and returned control to France.

British Colonial History

After the Napoleonic Wars, the Congress of Vienna awarded the islands to Britain. They declared Port Columbus, the official capital of the colony. The British made the cocoa plantations extremely profitable by converting them into rum distillers. In 1836 slavery was outlawed, but the former slaves still had to work for their former masters in order to pay off the rent for their homes and land.

Self Determination

On June 29, 1935 The Kokomo gained autonomy from the United Kingdom. The first PM was Charles Bates, the strongman who was in power until 1947. Hurricane Shiloh hit the islands and caused much devastation, to the now un-sponsored economy. Bates, set out to re-develop throughout the islands, but the government was short on funds. His conservative successors, Samuel Roberts and Neal Worrell (both CP, in power until 1965) did not create much social spending. The New Wave Movement, elected into office in the 1970's, attempted radical change by joining the United States Unincorporated Territories and rebuilding the government and economy. Social spending in the late 70's and early 1980's led to better quality of life and an increase in tourism. In the 2000's the commonwealth was ranked as one of the best in the Caribbean, though it still faces issues on Gay rights.

Geography

The Kokomo is characterized by its sandy beaches, found along the coast. The southern beaches (and waters) are the most tourist and swimmer friendly, as they are sandy and warm. The northern seaboard are full of rocky beaches, string undercurrents and colder waters. The northern interior is dominated by Gun Hill, a 118m high hill located within Gun Hill National Park.

KO municipalities

Map of Municipalities

List of Municipalitie

Tourism

Tourism is the largest source of revenue in the islands. The largest touristic areas are the capital region (including Bonaire Beach), Aventador Beach, and Kokomo Cabana Beach. Other tourists destinations are the few beaches between Foggy Bottom and Lyon Beach.

Demographics

64, 290 people live in The Kokomo, the majority in Port Columbus. There are also 2000 torusits that live on a temporary basis, mostly in beach homes in the south and west coasts.

The official language is English, spoken by everyone on the island. About 40-60% of the people also speak a local creole (Patwa Kokomé) which is a remnant of the French colonial period.

Religion

<p style="font-family:Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif;">Most Kokomese citizens practice Rastafarian religion brought in by Jamaican immigrants. There is also a small Catholic minority.

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