Key events in bermuda history

By straddling the old and new worlds, our Island often finds itself a player in history's crucial moments. And that is just how we like it.

1503 Spanish sea captain Juan de Bermúdez spots the uninhabited islands that will later bear his name.

1609 A violent storm wrecks the Jamestown-bound Sea Venture off St. George's Island. Sir George Somers and his entire crew miraculously survive, marking the beginning of the colonisation of our island.

1614 Our island is surrendered by the private Virginia Company to the Crown, making the island Britain’s oldest colony.

1812 The United States declares war on Great Britain. Bermuda becomes a staging area for British troops on their way to fight the US.

1815 The City of Hamilton succeeds the Town of St. George as Bermuda’s capital.

1834 Bermuda's slaves are emancipated.

1877 Mark Twain visits Bermuda for the first time and declares, “You can go to heaven if you want to, I’ll stay here in Bermuda.”

1941 During WWII (1939-1945) Britain and the United States sign a 99-year lease that grants the US one-tenth of the land area of Bermuda for military purposes.

1964 The phrase “Bermuda Triangle” is coined, but the myth is finally debunked in the 1970s.

2000 The Historic Town of St. George and related fortifications are named a World Heritage Site.