Report of Virgin Islands Governor

Report of Virgin Islands Governor/tiles/non-collection/c/c_038imgtile1.xml
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Report of Virgin Islands Governor/tiles/non-collection/c/c_038imgtile2.xml
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Report of Virgin Islands Governor/tiles/non-collection/c/c_038imgtile3.xml
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Report of Virgin Islands Governor/tiles/non-collection/c/c_038imgtile4.xml
Image courtesy of the National Archives and Records Administration
Report of Virgin Islands Governor/tiles/non-collection/c/c_038imgtile5.xml
Image courtesy of the National Archives and Records Administration

Description

In 1916, the United States purchased from Denmark the islands of St. Croix, St. John, and St. Thomas for $25 million. Today, this group of islands is a United States territory known as the U.S. Virgin Islands. Despite desperate economic conditions on the islands caused by drought and the collapse of the sugar cane industry, World War I spurred the acquisition, as the United States sought a strategic foothold in the Caribbean Islands from which it could control access to the Panama Canal. The U.S. Navy administered the islands until 1931. The Department of the Interior took over, and President Herbert Hoover appointed the first civilian governor, Paul Martin Pearson. Pearson submitted this report to Interior, outlining the conditions on the islands when he came into office, and what steps he planned to rehabilitate the islands’ economy.

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