The West Indies is a region of the Caribbean Basin and North Atlantic Ocean that includes the many islands and

West Indies

island nations of the Antilles and the Lucayan Archipelago. After the first of the voyages of Christopher Columbus to the Americas, Europeans began to use the misnomer West Indies to differentiate that region from the Indies (South Asia and Southeast Asia).

From the 17th through the 19th century, the European colonial territories of the West Indies were the French West Indies, British West Indies, the Danish West Indies, the Netherlands Antilles (Dutch West Indies), and the Spanish West Indies. By extension, some formerly Danish and Spanish islands are now collectively known as the American West Indies; however, this appellation is of recent origin.

In 1916, Denmark sold the Danish West Indies to the United States for US $25 million in gold, as per the Treaty of the Danish West Indies. The Danish West Indies became an insular area of the US, called the United States Virgin Islands.

Between 1958 and 1962, the United Kingdom reorganised all their West Indies island territories (except the British Virgin Islands and the Bahamas) into the West Indies Federation. They hoped that the Federation would coalesce into a single, independent nation. However, the Federation had limited powers, numerous practical problems, and a lack of popular support; consequently, it was dissolved by the British in 1963, with nine provinces becoming independent sovereign states and four becoming British Overseas Territories.

West Indies or West India was the namesake of several chartered companies of the 17th and 18th centuries, including the Danish West India Company, the Dutch West India Company, the French West India Company, and the Swedish West India Company.

West Indian is the official term used by the U.S. government to refer to people of the West Indies.

Regions Edit

Luacyan Archipelago Edit

  • The Bahamas
  • Turk and Caicos Islands
  • Bermuda

Greater Antilles Edit

  • Cuba
  • Cayman Islands (United Kingdom)
  • Jamaica
  • Haiti
  • Dominican Republic
  • Puerto Rico (United States)

Lesser Antilles Edit

  • United States Virgin Islands (United States)
  • British Virgin Islands (United Kingdom)
  • Anguilla (United Kingdom)
  • Saint Martin (France)
  • Sint Maarten (Netherlands)
  • Saint Barthélemy (France)
  • Saba (Netherlands)
  • Saint Eustatius (Netherlands)
  • Saint Kitts and Nevis
  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Montserrat (United Kingdom)
  • Guadeloupe (France)
  • Dominica
  • Martinique (France)
  • Saint Lucia
  • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
  • Barbados
  • Grenada
  • Trinidad and Tobago

Leeward Antilles Edit

  • Aruba (Netherlands)
  • Curaçao (Netherlands)
  • Bonaire (Netherlands)
  • Nueva Esparta (Venezuela)
  • Las Aves (Venezuela)
  • Los Roques (Venezuela)
  • La Orchilla (Venezuela)
  • La Blanquilla (Venezuela)
  • Los Hermanos (Venezuela)
  • Los Testigos (Venezuela)
  • Isla la Tortuga (Venezuela)
  • Isla de Margaritas (Venezuela)

Central America Edit

  • Belize

South America Edit

  • Guyana
  • Suriname
  • French Guyana (France)