St. Vincent and Grenadines Association of Toronto

Important Dates

Important Dates in the History of St. Vincent & the Grenadines

Events leading up to the attainment of Independence in 1979

1498 St. Vincent was so named
1655 Wars between the Carib and French settlers.
1675 Slave ship wrecked off Bequia. "Negro" slaves swam to St. Vincent and later produced the Black            Caribs.
1763 St. Vincent became British by Peace of Paris
1765 St. Vincent Botanic Gardens established
1772 First Carib War
1796 Death of Chatoyer, Carib Chief (March 14)
1797 Caribs deported to Ruatan off Honduras (March)
1812 Eruption of La Soufriere (April 30)
1813 Construction of Byera tunnel
1817 Establishment of one of the earliest newspapers - The Royal Gazette and Weekly Advertiser
1820 Consecration of St. George's Anglican Church (Septtember 6)
1825 Bishop of Barbados visited St. Vincent for the first time, and was sworn in as ex-officio member of            Council
1834 Slavery abolished
1838 Abolition of apprenticeship
1843 Act to increase General Assembly to 25
1849 Arrival of first free African immigrants
1853 Yellow Fever outbreak
1854 Encumbered Estate Act
1858 Cholera outbreak
1856 Executive Council created: 10 persons - 5 from the Legislative Council, 5 from the Assembly
1859 Inauguration of Windward Island Court of Appeal
1863 Passage of Newspaper Act under which declarations by publishers, proprietors, and printers were to            be made and delivered to the Registrar
1868 New constitution
1873 Disestablishment of the Church
1874 Colonial Hospital established at Edinboro
1875 Political constitution altered (August 5)
1875 Establishment of Royal St. Vincent Police Force
1876 Confirmation by Queen of Constitution Act of 1875 (December 6)
1877 New Executive Council was made by letters Patent
1878 Bishop Mitchinson installed in St. George's Cathedral Kingstown, as Bishop of the Windward Islands            (November)
1879 Meeting of the Legislative Council at Court House
1881 Kingstown cemetery opened (February 1)
1890 Botanic Gardens re-established
1895 First English cricket touring team to visit
1897 Royal Commission enquiry about sugar industry led to re-distribution of land and to establishment of            proprietor
1897 Local government established - Kingstown
1898 Hurricane
1902 Eruption of La Soufriere
1903 Dr. Daniel Morris, Director of Imperial Department of Agriculture for the West Indies, suggested            cotton group
1906 Cotton Growers Association established
1907 Foundation stone laid of the (September 11)Carnegie Free Library
1908 St. Vincent Agriculture Credit & Loan Bank Ltd. established
1909 Free Public Library was formally opened by His Honor Anthony Defreitas, Acting Administrator            (February 1)
1910 Census - 41,877
1921 Hurricane
1929 Corner Stone of pavilion at Victoria (May 1) Park laid by Governor Seton James
1933 First Trade Union Ordinance enacted
1935 Riot in St. Vincent (October 21)
1937 Change of name of Harbour in Bequia to Port Elizabeth
1940 Arrival of Lord Moyne Commission
1951 Introduction of adult suffrage (May 5)
1954 First Secondary School Bequia, Adventist
1958 Establishment of Federation of West Indies
1959 Introduction of ministerial system
1962 Demise of Federation of West Indies
1962 Final Mt. Bentick cane crop. End of St. Vincent sugar cane industry
1962 Establishment of Arnos Vale Airport
1964 Establishment of deep water harbour
1968 Entry of St. Vincent into the Carifta Agreement (July 1)
1969 St. Vincent became a State in association with Great Britain
1971 Mild Eruption of La Soufriere
1976 Airstrip at Canouan established
1979 Violent Eruption of La Soufriere (April 13)
1979 Independence of St. Vincent & the Grenadines

Highlights - from 1979 to 2007
Information contributed by
Dr. Adrian Fraser
Resident Tutor/Head University Centre
St. Vincent and the Grenadines

1979 Eruption of La Soufriere volcano (April 13)

1980 St.Vincent became a member of the United Nations (September 16)

1981 Mr. Joel Toney served as Ambassador to the United Nations - the first resident Ambassador from St. Vincent (1981 - 1984)

1981 Signing of the Treaty of Basseterre that gave rise to the OECS (June)

1985 The new SVG flag came into use officially (October 21)

1987 SVG elected to one of the Vice-Presidencies of the United Nations General Assembly - the first English speaking Caribbean country to have attained that honour (September)

1991 Death of Ebenezer Theodore Joshua (March 14) - first Chief Minister of SVG

1997 Death of Robert Milton Cato, father of the Nation (February 10) - 1st Premier and Prime Minister

2002 Joseph Chatoyer declared first national hero of St. Vincent and the Grenadines (March 14)

2007 Opening of the Yurumein Taiwan Bridge at Rabacca (March 28)


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