1928-Says Alexander Hamilton worked in this store when he was a boy.
1936. Aerial above Frenchtown St Thomas. Punto Island still there. Channel not dredged fully.
1942-Bourne Field St Thomas. Grumman Goose
Aerial of Crown Bay (Subbase)and the airport 1942.
Alexander Hamilton Airport, St Croix 1960s.
Antilles Air Boats 'Mother Goose' Christiansted Harbor 1960s
Bornn's Bay Rum ready to be loaded. St Thomas c1920
Charlotte Amalie Harbor 1920s
Charlotte Amalie harbor, 1960s
Christiansted, 1930s
Christiansted 1940s
Christiansted 1950s
Christiansted, St Croix early 1920s
Church in Frederiksted 1940s
Cinnamon Bay, St John 1960s
Club Comanche. Christiansted 1960s
Coaling a ship. St Thomas 1924162
Community Band 1924, St Thomas
Coral Bay, St John. 1960s.
Coral World, St Thomas late '70s.
Cruise ship, Frederiksted Pier 1960s. Taken from Victoria House
Cruz Bay Battery and the Creek 1960s
Cruz Bay dock. 1941
Cruz Bay, St John C.1967
Cruz Bay, St John. Christian's Fort 1950s.
Crystal Gade, Charlotte Amalie, St Thomas. 1920s
Early 20s. Trader's Wharf is says. Torola Wharf. St Thomas.
Flag Hill, St Thomas, 1960s. Original Tramway, Original Yacht Haven.
Frederiksted, 1960s
Frederiksted, early 1920s
From Bluebeard's 1930s. St Thomas
From Raphune area looking East. St Thomas aerial 1942
Ft Christian St Thomas, early 1920s
Grand Hotel Square, St Thomas 1960s.
Grand Hotel Square, St Thomas, 1940s.
Gutter on Main Street by the now Enid Baa Library. C.1940
Hurricane after effects. Frenchtown, St Thomas. 1928
King's Wharf, St Thomas, 1940s
Lighthouse Point, St Thomas, 1950s
Main Street Charlotte Amalie 1940s. The Art Shop and Daily News owned by Ariel Melchior, Sr. And J Antonio Jarvis.
Main Street St Thomas 1940s
Marine Barracks 1920s St Thomas
Marine Barracks 1920s St Thomas
Mill Round, Caneel Bay, St John, 1950s
Peace Hill, St John 1960s
Police Captain-St John-1941
Protestant Cay, St Croix 1960s
Red Hook, St.Thomas 1960's
St Croix by the Sea 1960s
St John, 1950's
St John, 1960s
St. John's Anglican Church, Christiansted St Croix 1960s
St Thomas, 1960s
St Thomas harbor. 1933. Kids diving for coins thrown off steam ships.
Subbase St Thomas, mid 50s
The Battery Cruz Bay, St John 1960s
The Battery Cruz Bay, St John 1960s
The building of the sea wall WICO dock. St Thomas.
The dredging by Frenchtown. Creating land and losing Punto Island 1940s.
The raising of the Stars and Stripes March 31, 1917. Transfer Day
Upstreet St Thomas 1930s
Victoria House, Frederiksted, St Croix
View from Ft Christian St Thomas, 1960s

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What is Transfer Day?
The 31st of March is recognized every year as "Transfer Day" in the United States Virgin Islands. Learn More

Official Greetings
Are you interested in what our Government officals and board members have to say? Read Messages

COMMISSION  MEMBERS

Pamela C. Richards
Chairperson

Gerville Larsen
Vice Chairperson

  • Patricia Frorup
  • Patrice Harley
  • Dr. Lois Hassell-Habtes
  • Senator Myron Jackson
  • Sonia Jacobs Dow
  • Hans Lawaetz
  • Marlene Boschulte
  • Clement Magras
  • Shawn-Michael Malone
  • Colette Conroy  Monroe
  • Shelley Moorhead
  • Robert O’Connor
  • Dr. Eugene Petersen
  • Senator Sammuel Sanes
  • Charles W. Turnbull, PhD.
  • Kevin Jackson
    Executive Director
  • James A. O'Bryan, Jr.
  • Asst.  Executive Director

What is the Virgin Islands Transfer Centennial Commission

In 2014, Gov. John deJongh Jr. announced the names of 14 Virgin Islanders he had appointed to the Centennial Commission, a "special and temporary" commission established for "the purpose of formulating plans and making preparations to commemorate and celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the transfer of the Virgin Islands from Denmark to the United States of America,", in accordance with Act No. 7157, which was enacted in 2010 and amended in January to specify that the Centennial Commission must include six residents of St. Croix, six residents of St. Thomas and three residents of St. John, all to be appointed by the governor.

In addition, the commission is to include the presidents of two Virgin Islands organizations that foster the ongoing relationship between the Virgin Islands and Denmark. The legislation also provides that the president of the Legislature appoint two senators, one from each district.

"The Transfer Day Centennial is an opportunity to showcase the Virgin Islands on a grand scale and help others appreciate the contributions of Virgin Islands to the nation since we became U.S. citizens," deJongh said, adding that his vision of the Centennial celebrations includes “an open dialogue on the struggles that our ancestors overcame to ensure the liberties we enjoy today. Also part of these celebrations must be an exploration of our cultural inheritance from Denmark, the United States and Africa. By understanding our past, I am confident that we can foster a future of greater economic opportunity for all.”

Act No. 7157 established a separate fund within the Treasury of the Virgin Islands to provide resources for the Transfer Day anniversary celebration, which is to commence on or before Aug. 4, 2016, and terminate on Dec. 31, 2017.

WHAT IS TRANSFER DAY

The 31st of March is recognized every year as "Transfer Day" in the United States Virgin Islands. This day commemorates an event that occurred over nine decades ago, when the Danish West Indies were formally ceded to the United States by Denmark; thus, becoming the U.S. Virgin Islands, in exchange for twenty-five million dollars. The United States' interest in the Virgin Islands was primarily for their strategic location, while any economic benefits were secondary. The islands represented a much needed foothold in the Caribbean for the American navy, and later were looked toward as a base to guard the Panama Canal. American negotiations with the Danish government can be characterized as ones of strategic diplomacy. All offers of proposed purchase came on the heels of American military conflicts.

American interest in the Virgin Islands dates back to as early as the mid-1860's. At the eve of the Civil War, budding American imperialism, and the need for a Carribean naval base, prompted Secretary of State William H. Seward to begin to investigate the islands as a possible coaling station for U.S. naval and merchant vessels. On October 24, 1867, after nearly two years of extensive negotiation and a visit to the islands by Seward, himself, the Danish government ratified a treaty, in which Denmark would cede the islands of St. Thomas and St. John to the United States. The price was to be seven and a half million dollars in gold, provided the treaty received the consent of the islands’ population. Unfortunately, within a year the islands were visited by a hurricane, an earthquake, a tsunami and a fire.

By the end of the Spanish American War, Secretary of State John Hay expressed renewed interest in the Virgin Islands to the Danish government. Beginning on January 29, 1900, and over another two years a new treaty was negotiated, in which the Danish government would cede the islands of St. Thomas, St. John and St. Croix to the United States for the sum of five million dollars. The treaty was ratified by the U.S. Congress. However, the Danes returned the thirty year-old diplomatic insult, and neither house of the Danish legislature ratified the treaty.

Subtle efforts to negotiate the purchase of the Virgin Islands by the United States continued after the failure of the Treaty of 1902. However, by 1915 American interest had become heightened by fears of the impending crisis in Europe. The General Board, headed by Admiral Dewey informed Secretary of State Robert Lansing, that the purchase of the islands would not be advantageous as the site of an American naval base in light of the recent acquisition of Puerto Rico, but that the purchase would be wise in order to deter any other power from gaining bases in the Caribbean. Dewey, felt that this tactical defense of the Panama Canal was just politically by the Monroe Doctrine and by increased German efforts to consolidate the islands through commercial, diplomatic or perhaps even military means.

In March of 1916, Secretary Lansing sent a drafted treaty to the Danish Ambassador in Copenhagen Dr. Maurice Egan, offering twenty-five million dollars in gold coins for the islands, with instructions to deliver the proposal to the Danish government. On August 14, 1916, at the Biltmore Hotel in New York City, a revised treaty was signed by Danish Minister Constantin Brun and Secretary of State Lansing. The U.S. Senate approved the treaty on September 7, 1916 and by December 21, 1916 the Danish Rigsdag had approved the treaty as well. Finally, on January 17, 1917 the treaty ratifications were exchanged and the treaty finalized.

The official transfer of the Danish West Indies to the United States did not occur until 4:00 PM on March 31st, 1917, when a formal ceremony was held in the islands. At the State Department a U.S. Treasury Warrant for twenty-five million dollars was given to Danish Minister Brun.

News Info

Jan 13, 16

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Date: 1/10/2017 8:45 AM EST


Posted by V.I. Transfer Centennial 2017

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