(Guahan). Organized unincorporated US territory. Southernmost is. of Mariana* Is. Area: ca. 212 sq. mi.; Natives are basically of Indonesian stock. Probably discovered 1521 by Ferdinand Magellan (ca. 14801521; Port. navigator sailing for the Spanish), who is said to have named it Ladrones (thieves, perhaps in reference to behavior of natives); formally claimed by Sp. 1565; ceded to US 1898 at end of Sp.-Am. War, occupied 1899; occupied by Jap. 1941; retaken by US 1944. Official language: English. RC (now ca. 95%) 1668; others have included Assemblies of God, Prot. Episc. Ch., Seventh-day Adv., S Bap. Convention. The LCA began work in the early 1970s.
Edited by: Erwin L. Lueker, Luther Poellot, Paul Jackson
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