Port of Saint Thomas

Port of Saint Thomas

Saint Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands

WGS84: 18° 20′ 0″ N, 64° 55′ 0″ W
18.333333, -64.916667

UTM: 20Q 297451 2028131

Saint Thomas (Spanish: Santo Tomás; Dutch: Sint-Thomas; Danish: Sankt Thomas) is one of the Virgin Islands in the Caribbean Sea and, together with St. John, Water Island and St. Croix, form a county and constituent district of the United States Virgin Islands (USVI), an unincorporated territory of the United States. Located on the island is the territorial capital and port of Charlotte Amalie. As of the 2010 census, the population of Saint Thomas was 51,634 about 48.5% of the US Virgin Islands total. The district has a land area of 31.24 square miles (80.9 km2

The island was originally settled around 1500 BC by the Ciboney people. They were later replaced by the Arawaks and then the Caribs. Christopher Columbus sighted the island in 1493 on his second voyage to the “New World”.

The Dutch West India Company established a post on Saint Thomas in 1657. The first congregation was the St. Thomas Reformed Church, which was established in 1660 and was associated with the Dutch Reformed Church.The Danish conquered the island in 1666, and by 1672 had established control over the entire island through the Danish West India and Guinea Company. The land was divided into plantations and sugarcane production became the primary economic activity. As a result, the economies of Saint Thomas and the neighboring islands of Saint John and Saint Croix became highly dependent on slave labor and the slave trade. In 1685, the Brandenburgisch-Africanische Compagnie took control of the slave trade on Saint Thomas, and for some time the largest slave auctions in the world were held there.