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Thursday, February 22, 2024


March 18, 2004 – The 87th anniversary of the United States' purchase of the Danish West Indies from Denmark will be celebrated March 31 in a 10 a.m. ceremony of the grounds of the V. I. Legislature — at the spot where the first transfer ceremony was held, Gov. Charles W. Turnbull announced Wednesday.
The United States bought the territory for $25 million from Denmark in a ceremony March 31, 1917.
The governor also named the month of March as "United States Virgin Islands-Denmark Friendship Month."
In his proclamation naming Virgin Islands-Denmark Friendship Month, the governor said that the V.I. government recognizes the historic ancestral ties of the people of the former Danish West Indies to the people of Africa. He said that some of those people were enslaved and transported to the territory during the mid-Atlantic slave trade. He went on to say that descendants of those slaves forced their emancipation on July 3, 1848.
The governor said this year is significant in the history of Denmark because it will mark the marriage of IIRI Crown Prince Frederik to Mary Elizabeth Donaldson on May 14 at Vor Frue Kirke, Copenhagen's Lutheran Cathedral.
Transfer Day is a V. I. government holiday, and Turnbull urged residents to join him in the March 31 celebration. Lee Vanterpool, government house spokesman, said details on the ceremony and other Transfer Day events are still in the planning stages.
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