The French, Dutch, and English made attempts to capture Puerto Rico, but failed to wrest long-term occupancy of the island.
In 1947, the United States granted the right to democratically elect the governor of Puerto Rico.
After the rapid gains of independence by the South and Central American states in the first part of the century, Puerto Rico and Cuba became the sole New World remnants of the large Spanish empire.
Puerto Rico's three major political parties are most distinguished by their position on the political status of Puerto Rico.
The first indigenous settlers of Puerto Rico were the Ortoiroid, an Archaic age culture.
The highest elevation point of Puerto Rico, Cerro de Punta (4,390 feet; 1,338 m), is located in this range.
In 1984 the head of the Roman Catholic Church,Pope John Paul II , became the first Pope to visit Puerto Rico.
Present-day Puerto Rico has become a major tourist destination and a leading pharmaceutical and manufacturing center.
Emigration has been a major part of Puerto Rico's recent history as well.
Located in the Caribbean, Puerto Rico has a tropical climate with little seasonal variation and enjoys an average temperature of 82.4 °F (28 °C) throughout the year.
Puerto Rico also is not included in the Current Population Surveys that the Census Bureau conducts to update its decennial census.
Puerto Rico has sometimes been said to have a white majority, an extinct Amerindian population, Africans, persons of mixed ancestry, and a small Asian minority.
The first comprises the subfamily Cheirogaleoidea and the latter three comprise the suborder Lemuroidea.
Beginning during at this time, there was heavy migration from Puerto Rico to the Continental United States, particularly New York City, in search of better economic conditions.
Still, Puerto Rico continues to struggle to define its political status.
The economic conditions in Puerto Rico have improved dramatically since the Great Depression due to external investment in capital-intensive industries such as petrochemicals, pharmaceuticals, and technology.
Mona is uninhabited through large parts of the year except for employees of the Puerto Rico Department of Natural Resources.
A non-voting Resident Commissioner is elected by the residents of Puerto Rico to the U.S. Congress.
From the United States they received the English language, the university system, and a variety of hybrid cultural forms that developed between the United States mainland and the island of Puerto Rico.
Education in Puerto Rico is divided into four levels.
The history of the island of Puerto Rico (Rich Port) before the arrival of Christopher Columbus is not well known.
The variety of surnames which exist in Puerto Rico suggests widespread immigration to the island from many regions.
Another popular unofficial symbol of Puerto Rico is the "jнbaro," the "countryman."
The current constitution of Puerto Rico was approved through referendum in 1952 and ratified by the U.S. Congress, which maintains ultimate sovereignty over Puerto Rico.
Puerto Rico's formal Chief of State is the President of the United States; however, most of the executive functions are carried out by the elected Governor.
Luis Muсoz Marнn became the first elected governor of Puerto Rico in the 1948 general elections, serving as such for 16 years, until 1964.
Still, Puerto Rico does not have voting representation in the U.S. Congress; neither does it have any delegates to the U.S.
During the 1800s, hundreds of Corsican, French, and Portuguese, along with a large numbers of immigrants from the Canary Islands and numerous Spanish loyalists from Spain's former colonies in South America, arrived in Puerto Rico.
The only public university system in Puerto Rico is the University of Puerto Rico.
Puerto Rico (pronounced pwer-tuh ree-koh), the smallest of the Greater Antilles, consists of a main island of Puerto Rico and various smaller islands, including Vieques, Culebra, Mona, Desecheo, and Caja de Muertos.
Spain was forced to cede Puerto Rico, along with Cuba and the Philippines, to the United States under the Treaty of Paris (1898).
In 1897, Muсoz Rivera and others persuaded the liberal Spanish government to agree to Charters of Autonomy for Cuba and Puerto Rico.
Puerto Rico is subject to U.S. trade laws and restrictions.
The Pinzуn family was given one year by the Spanish court to start a settlement in Puerto Rico, which would give them a claim to the island.
Some say that Puerto Rico was not discovered by Columbus but by Martнn Alonso Pinzуn in 1492 when he separated from Columbus and went exploring on his own.
The eighteenth and nineteenth century saw an increase in settlement in Puerto Rico.
Puerto Rico has 17 lakes, all of which are man-made reservoirs.
The official symbols of Puerto Rico are the bird, Reinita mora (Spindalis portoricensis), the flower, Flor de Maga (Thespesia grandiflora), and the tree, Ceiba or Kapok (Ceiba pentandra).
A number of plebiscites have been held in recent decades to decide whether Puerto Rico should request independence, enhanced commonwealth status, or statehood.
The first municipality (then termed a town) of Puerto Rico, San Juan, was founded in 1521.
In 1898, at the outbreak of the Spanish-American War, Puerto Rico, being a colony of Spain, was invaded by the United States with a landing at Guбnica.
The following year, Puerto Rico's first, but short-lived, autonomous government was organized.