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Saturday, July 4, 2009

Were Convicts or Miners The First Settlers In New Caledonia?

New Caledonia is a French colony that consists of about 25 islands in the South Pacific, some 750 miles off the coast of Australia.

Most of the islands are very small. The single large island, called New Caledonia, has an area of 6,530 square miles, about the same size as all the Hawaiian Islands put together.

In 1853, France took control of New Caledonia and set up a penal colony there. French convicts were sent there to serve their prison sentences. Until the 1890s, most of the Europeans on New Caledonia had come there as convicts.

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