• Spain lays formal claim to the Marshall Islands.

  • The Marshall Islands are given their name by British Naval Captain John William Marshall who sails through the area with convicts bound for New South Wales.

  • Germany annexes the Marshall Islands from Spain and pays Spain approximately $4.5 million as compensation. 

  • The Marshall Islands become a protectorate.

  • The League of Nations grants Japan the mandate to administer the islands.

  • American forces seize the Marshall islands from Japan.

  • The Marshall islands become a part of the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands that was created by the UN, the islands are administered by the United States.

  • The United States tests a series of 23 nuclear weapons in the Bikini Atoll area at 7 tests sites, including on the reef, by air, underwater, and on the sea.

  • In preparation of more self- governance in Micronesia, U.S. government sets up the Congress of Micronesia.

  • The United States begins a long-term project to help decontaminate the Bikini Atoll area following the nuclear tests.

  • After seeking more political independence, Marshall Islands withdraws from the Congress of Micronesia.

  • The Marshall Islands gain independence from the United States after the U.S. recognizes Marshall Islands' constitution and government.

  • Voters on the  Marshall Islands approve the Compact of Free Association with the United States, which is ratified by the US three years later.

  • U.S's Congress promises compensation to the Marshall Islands for the damages caused by the Nuclear tests.

  • Radiation levels are considered to be low enough for tourism to return to the Bikini Atoll.

  • The American president signs a new Compact of Free Association, worth $3.5 billion over 20 years, with the Marshall Islands and Micronesia.

  • The United States drops the Forum Fisheries Agency treaty with several Pacific Nations, which leaves the Marshall Islands facing a serious shortfall in revenues from fees.


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