Where in the World is . . .
Grenada (J3)
CQ 8 ITU 11 IOTA NA-024
Grenada is a Caribbean country comprising a main island, also
called Grenada, and smaller surrounding islands. Dubbed the
“Spice Isle,” the hilly main island is home to numerous nutmeg
plantations. It’s also the site of the capital, St. George’s, whose
colorful homes, Georgian buildings and early-18th-century Fort
George overlook it’s narrow harbor.
Only 201
st
out of 339 on Club Log’s Most Wanted DXCC list, Grenada is still pursued by DX
enthusiasts, especially those who chase the IOTA awards.
About 2 million years ago, Grenada was formed as an
underwater volcano just 90 miles northeast of
Venezuela,
Before the arrival
of Europeans,
Grenada was
inhabited by
indigenous
tribes.
Christopher Columbus sighted Grenada in 1498 during his third voyage to the New World.
The French were the first to settle in 1649. They made war on the natives and eventually drove them
to the hills or to nearby islands. The French established an economy initially based on sugar cane
and indigo. The capital was named Fort Royal (later St. George). To shelter from hurricanes, the
French navy would often take refuge in the capital's natural harbor.
The British captured Grenada during the Seven Years' War in 1762. Known
in America as the French and Indian War, it sowed the seeds of the
American Revolution. The British held the island till the modern day, except
for a brief period after the American Revolution.
Nutmeg was introduced to Grenada in 1843 when a merchant ship left a
few nutmeg trees in Grenada. This was the beginning of Grenada's nutmeg
industry that now supplies nearly 40% of the world's annual crop.
Tourism is Grenada's main economic force. The tourism industry is
increasing dramatically with the construction of a large cruise ship
pier. Up to four cruise ships per day were visiting St. Georges in
2007–2008 during the cruise ship season.
Grenada remained a British Crown Colony and later, a member of
the British Commonwealth until 1974, when it achieved complete
independence. In 1979, a leftist coup, suspended the constitution, and established the People's
Revolutionary Government which had close ties with Cuba. Four years later, the U.S. invaded the
island. deposing the PRG and establishing a government friendly to the U.S. The date of the invasion
is now a national holiday in Grenada, called Thanksgiving Day.
The climate is tropical: hot and humid in the rainy season and cooled by the trade winds in the dry
season. Grenada, being on the southern edge of the hurricane belt, has suffered only three
hurricanes in fifty years.
Reporting from the Dark Side,
Ron, K5HM
Next Month: A visit to the Outer Hebrides.