Parents and Teachers: Support Ducksters by following us on or .
Brief History of Marshall Islands:
The Marshall Islands is a small island nation in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. The islands were first inhabited by migratory people from Southeast Asia. The first European to arrive was Spanish explorer de Sasvedra who landed in 1529. In 1799, English explorer John Marshall visited. The islands were named after John Marshal.
Spain was the first to claim the islands in 1874. Not long after that in 1884, they were purchased from Spain by Germany. During World War I, Japan took control of the islands until late in World War II when the United States expelled the Japanese. The islands would be a US territory until 1979 when they became an independent nation. Today the Marshall Islands hosts the US Army Reagan Missile Test Site, an important installation in the US missile defense network.
The Geography of Marshall Islands
Total Size: 11,854 square km
Size Comparison: about the size of Washington, DC
Geographical Coordinates: 9 00 N, 168 00 E
World Region or Continent: Oceania
General Terrain: low coral limestone and sand islands
Geographical Low Point: Pacific Ocean 0 m
Geographical High Point: unnamed location on Likiep 10 m
Climate: tropical; hot and humid; wet season May to November; islands border typhoon belt
Major cities: MAJURO (capital) 30,000 (2009)
The People of Marshall Islands
Type of Government: constitutional government in free association with the US; the Compact of Free Association entered into force 21 October 1986 and the Amended Compact entered into force in May 2004
Languages Spoken: Marshallese 98.2%, other languages 1.8% (1999 census)
Independence: 21 October 1986 (from the US-administered UN trusteeship)
National Holiday: Constitution Day, 1 May (1979)
Nationality: Marshallese (singular and plural)
Religions: Protestant 54.8%, Assembly of God 25.8%, Roman Catholic 8.4%, Bukot nan Jesus 2.8%, Mormon 2.1%, other Christian 3.6%, other 1%, none 1.5% (1999 census)
National Anthem or Song:
Economy of Marshall Islands
Major Industries: copra, tuna processing, tourism, craft items from seashells, wood, and pearls
Agricultural Products: coconuts, tomatoes, melons, taro, breadfruit, fruits; pigs, chickens
Natural Resources: coconut products, marine products, deep seabed minerals
Major Exports: copra cake, coconut oil, handicrafts, fish
Major Imports: foodstuffs, machinery and equipment, fuels, beverages and tobacco
Currency: US dollar (USD)
National GDP: $133,500,000
** Source for population (2012 est.) and GDP (2011 est.) is CIA World Factbook.
Back to Geography Home Page TD>