Cape Verde

NASA images of Cape Verde

NASA image of Cape Verde, Jeff Schmaltz, October 17, 2005

Cape Verde, an island republic in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Africa. The islands total about 4,000 square kilometers (1,500 square miles) in area, slightly larger than the State of Rhode Island in the United States. The islands were claimed by Portugal in 1456; they declared their independence in 1975. Throughout its history, Cape Verde has been an important commercial port, serving at various times the slave trade, whaling, and transatlantic shipping. Commerce and tourism remain its dominant economic activities. All but one of the ten major islands are inhabited; the other, Santa Luzia, is a wildlife preserve. One of the islands, Fogo, contains an active volcano. This stratovolcano (a large cone-shaped volcano, like Mt. Rainier) measures 8 kilometers (5 miles) in diameter and last erupted in 1995. The rugged and mountainous islands have a warm, tropical climate and are often subjected to severe droughts.

Cape Verde was uninhabited when the Portuguese arrived in 1460 and made the islands part of the Portuguese empire. Due to its location off the coast of Africa, Cape Verde became an important watering station, then sugar cane plantation site, and later a major hub of the trans-atlantic slave trade, that would later form the contemporary African Diaspora.

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One Response to “Cape Verde”

  1. Jan Says:

    I usually don?t post in Blogs but your blog forced me to, amazing work.. beautiful

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