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A town in Puerto Rico, 1941.
A town in Puerto Rico, 1941

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U.S. Raised the Flag in Puerto Rico
October 18, 1898

Carib Indians frequently raided Puerto Rico; later, French, British, and Dutch pirates did the same. In 1533, the Spanish began construction of El Morro, a walled fort that would protect the narrow entrance to the harbor of San Juan. After 1830, sugar, coffee, and tobacco plantations flourished in the colony. The island's population jumped from just 45,000 in 1765 to 155,426 in 1800; some 13,000 of these people were slaves. By 1900, nearly a million people lived on the 3,435 square miles of Puerto Rico.
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