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Worst. Birthday. Ever. Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands, United States Territories

After Hurricanes Irma and Maria devastated Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI) this September, a survey revealed that only 54% of Americans know that the 3.4 million Puerto Ricans are American citizens. Many Americans are also unaware that the USVI are part of the United States. Paradoxically, 2017 was not only the year of the devastating hurricanes, but also the centennial of the territorial status of both Puerto Rico and the USVI in the United States. At the very moment we are commemorating their membership in our nation, these territories were almost wiped off the map.

One hundred years ago last March, the United States extended its borders and territory into the Caribbean. On March 2, 1917, the Jones-Shafroth Act became law, making Puerto Rico a territory of the United States.  The passage of the law guaranteed U.S. citizenship to Puerto Ricans born on or after April 25, 1898. The legislation was sponsored by Rep. William Jones (D-Va.), chairman of the House Committee on Insular Affairs, and Sen. John Shafroth (D-Colo.), chairman of the Senate Committee on Pacific Islands and Puerto Rico.

In December 1916, the United States began working with Denmark on the treaty to purchase the USVI, which then belonged to Denmark and were called the Danish West Indies. On January 23, 1917, President Woodrow Wilson asked Congress to appropriate $25,000,000.00 in gold to pay for the Danish West Indies and make them part of the United States. On March 31, 1917, the Danish flag was taken down and the United States flag was raised over the territory, a day which is now commemorated as Transfer Day. Ten years later, in February 1927, most residents of the USVI became U.S. citizens. The U.S. Navy administered the USVI’s governance until 1931, when the Department of the Interior assumed those duties.The Organic Act of 1954 provided a structure for the USVI’s government. The territory elected its first governor in 1970. Like Puerto Rico, the USVI has a delegate in Congress. The people of USVI were given the right to draft their own constitution in 1976, with the approval of the U.S. Congress and the president. However, although five constitutional conventions have been held, none of the drafts have yet been accepted.  The last convention was held in 2007, and a draft was sent to Congress in 2009. Congress returned the draft with suggested changes, and the convention met again in 2012 to discuss those changes.

To find more laws of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, and to learn more about the history of the territories’ acquisition and their governance, delve into the holdings of the Law Library. There’s a sampling in the bibliographies below. You can also learn more about the history of Puerto Rico becoming a United States territory, by reading our post covering the 100th anniversary of Puerto Rico.

Puerto Rico

Map of Puerto Rico / CIA World Factbook 2017 [https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/resources/the-world-factbook/geos/print_rq.html]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

KGV304.A66 A3 2014 Aponte Toro, Roberto P. Primera estación.

KGV2640.Α352009 C48 2016 Chiesa Aponte, Ernesto L  Reglas de evidencia comentadas.

KGV917.D53 2016 Díaz Olivo, Carlos E.  Sin fines de lucro: normativa jurídica del tercer sector.

KGV1319.D53 2016 Díaz Olivo, Carlos E.  Corporaciones: tratado sobre derecho corporativo.

KGV3205.F45 2014  Feijoó, José Roberto. Derecho laboral gubernamental.

KGV327.F66 2014  Fontánez Torres, Érika.  Ambigüedad y derecho : ensayos de crítica jurídica.

KGV602.G37 2015 García Cárdenas, Margarita E. Manual de propiedad horizontal: la Ley de condominios y esquemas jurídicos.

KGV2636.G669 2015 González Colón, Luis F. El Perito Psicológico Forense: desde la Consejería Profesional Licenciada y aliados de la salud en Puerto Rico.

KGV2919.H47 2014 Hernández Colón, Rafael. Estado Libre Asociado: naturaleza y desarrollo.

KGV3635.A28 2016  Legislación y documentación sobre las bibliotecas, los bibliotecarios y algunas instituciones de información en Puerto Rico.

KGV3588.L67 2014 López Cruz, Tamara. Un monstruo llamado D.E.: desenmascarando la verdad de la educación especial en Puerto Rico.

KGV1331.M66 2014 Montañez Miranda, Félix J. Lealtad fiduciaria de directores y oficiales.

KGV5414.32012.O78 2015 Ortega-Vélez, Ruth E. Código penal de Puerto Rico (2012) : enmendado por La Ley núm. 246/2014. Primera edición.

ΚGV516.Ο782 2014 Ortega-Vélez, Ruth E. Derechos y obligaciones de los abuelos: derecho puertorriqueño.

KGV801.R63 2014  Rodríguez Urbano, Jesús Antonio, 1977- La mora en el contrato de transacción judicial.

KGV215.S74 2016 Steidel Figueroa, Sigfrido. Ética para juristas: ética del abogado y responsabilidad disciplinaria.

United States Virgin Islands

United States Virgin Islands / CIA World Factbook 2017 [https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/resources/the-world-factbook/geos/vq.html]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

KF26 .T4 1933 United States. Congress. Senate. Committee on Territories and Insular Affairs. To provide a civil government for the Virgin Islands of the United States. Joint hearings before the committee on Territories and Insular Affairs, United States Senate, and committee on Insular Affairs, House of Representatives,   Seventy-second Congress, second session, on S. 5457 and H. R. 14319, bills to provide a civil government for the Virgin Islands of the United States. January 19-21, 1933.

KF26 .T5 1926  United States. Congress. Senate. Committee on Territories and Insular Possessions.  Permanent government for the Virgin Islands : ‡b hearings before the Committee on Territories and Insular Possessions, United States Senate, Sixty-ninth Congress, second session, on S. 3228, S. 4005, and S. 4550, bills to provide a permanent government for the Virgin Islands of the United States, and for other purposes.

KF27 .A7655 1973m  United States. Congress. House. Committee on Armed Services. Subcommittee No. 2.  Hearing on H.R. 7582, to amend Title 10, United States code, to entitle the delegates in Congress from Guam and the Virgin Islands to make appointments to the service academies; H.R. 8187, to amend Section 2031 (b) (1) of Title 10, United States code, to remove the requirement that a junior reserve officer training corps unit at any institution must have a minimum number of physically fit male students … September 26, 1973.

KF27 .I49 1936  United States. Congress. House. Committee on Insular Affairs. To provide a civil government for the Virgin Islands of the United States. Hearing before the Committee on Insular Affairs, House of Representatives, Seventy-fourth Congress, second session, on H. R. 11751, a bill to provide a civil government for the Virgin Islands of the United States (H. R. 12171, H. R. 12298, and S. 4524). April 3, 1936.

KF27.I49 1943 United States. Congress. House. Committee on Insular Affairs. To assist in relieving economic distress in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands: hearings before the Committee on Insular Affairs, House of Representatives, Seventy-eighth Congress, first session, on S. 981, an act to assist in relieving economic distress in Puerto Rico and the Virgin islands by providing work for unemployed persons, and for other purposes.

KF27.W3 1939e United States. Congress. House. Committee on Ways and Means. Appropriation of certain taxes to Virgin islands. Hearings before a Subcommittee of the Committee on Ways and Means, House of Representatives, Seventy-sixth Congress, first session, on H. R. 4773 … June 26 and 27, 1939.

KF27.W3 1948e United States. Congress. House. Committee on Ways and Means.  Tax remissions to Virgin Islands. Hearing before the Committee on Ways and Means, House of Representatives. Eightieth Congress, second session, on H.R. 4979 a bill to provide for the disposition of internal-revenue collections on articles produced in the Virgin Islands, February 3,18, and 27 1948. 

KF31.I5 1954 United States. Congress. Senate. Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs. Revision of the Organic act of the Virgin Islands; report to accompany S. 3378.

KGZ8 .U55   United States Virgin Islands. A set of laws passed by the municipal councils and the legislative assembly of the Virgin Islands.

KGZ10.4.W57 1973  Wisby, James S.  Digest and index of laws enacted, Ninth Legislature of the Virgin Islands, 1972.

KGZ104.A31956 A7 1985 United States Virgin Islands. Corporation laws of the Virgin Islands : Title thirteen of the Virgin Islands code.

KGZ307.V57 United States Virgin Islands. Attorney General’s Office. Opinions of the Attorney General of the Virgin Islands.

KGZ266 1972 .A2 1972  United States Virgin Islands. Constitutional Convention (1972)  Proposed Virgin Islands Federal relations act  as approved by Second Constitutional Convention of the Virgin Islands, August 10, 1972.

KGZ266 1972.A3 1972  United States Virgin Islands. Constitutional Convention (1972)  Constitution of the Territory of the United States Virgin Islands.

KGZ17.U55  United States Virgin Islands. Territorial Court. Annual report of the Territorial Court of the U.S. Virgin Islands. 

KGZ11.2 1970 Virgin Islands rules and regulations. 2nd ed.

KGZ11 .V57  Virgin Islands register.

KGZ13.A21917  Virgin Islands reports : containing opinions of courts of record, and others, relating to the Virgin Islands.

KGZ405.A48 U55 United States Virgin Islands. Office of the Government Comptroller. Decisions of the United States Comptroller for the Virgin Islands.

KGZ8.A23  United States Virgin Islands. Session laws of the Virgin Islands.

KGZ270.V57 1970  Virgin Islands, America’s Caribbean outpost:  the evolution of self-government.

KGZ151.A28 1967 United States Virgin Islands. Labor law of the Virgin Islands.

KGZ266 1906.A6 1921  Danish West Indies. Colonial law (no. 124-1906) for the Danish West India islands, Amalienborg, 6th April 1906.

KGZ8.2 1936 St. Croix, Virgin islands (Municipality). Laws, statutes, etc. A complete set of the laws enacted by the Municipal council of Saint Croix, by the Municipal council of Saint Thomas and Saint John. Letter from the acting secretary of the interior transmitting a complete set of the laws enacted by the Municipal council of Saint Croix, by the Municipal council of Saint Thomas and Saint John in connection with the requirement contained in the last sentence of the provision of section 16 of the Organic act of the Virgin islands of the United States relating to the publication of the laws annually as a public document …

KGZ294 .A28 1925 United States Virgin Islands. The laws of the Virgin Islands of the United States, municipality of Saint Thomas and Saint John from March 31, 1917 to December 31, 1924.

KF332.V5  V5  Virgin Islands bar journal.

KGZ281.2 .V57 1966 United States Virgin Islands. Legislature. Virgin Islands legislative manual.

KGZ268.V574 1965 United States Virgin Islands. Constitutional Convention (1964-1965) Proceedings.

KGZ281.2 .V57 1963  United States Virgin Islands. Legislature. Legislative manual.

KGZ281.2.V57 1960  United States Virgin Islands. Legislature. Legislative manual.

KGZ9.2 1957 United States Virgin Islands. Virgin Islands code, annotated.

LAW <United States West Indies Virgin Islands 1> United States Virgin Islands. Ordinance Providing for the Assessment, Levy and Collection of Taxes upon Real and Personal Property in the Municipality of St. Thomas and St. John, Virgin Islands of the United States.

LAW <United States 8 Commission on Application> United States. Commission on the Application of Federal Laws to the Virgin Islands. Report.

LAW <United States Pacific Islands Guam 1 Const. 1961>  Guam. Texts of the Organic act of Guam, as amended to December 31, 1960; Revised organic act of the Virgin Islands, as amended to December 31, 1960; Constitution of American Samoa, promulgated by the Secretary of the Interior, effective October 17, 1960.

LAW <United States Pacific Islands Guam 1 1958> Guam. Text of the Guam organic act of August 1, 1950 (64 Stat. 384) as amended by the Acts of August 27, 1954 (68 Stat. 882) and August 1, 1956 (70 Stat. 908, 911) and Text of the Virgin Islands organic act of July 22, 1954 (68 Stat. 497) as amended by the Act of August 30, 1957 (71 Stat. 510)

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