The Formation of the Northern Mariana Islands
The Prehistoric Period
The Spanish Period
The German Period
The Japanese Period
The Northern Mariana Islands and World War II
Trust Territory Period
United States Commonwealth
United States Commonwealth (1978 to Present)
The people of the Marianas were the first of all the former
Trust Territory entities to decide their future political identity,
they decided to enter into a Commonwealth arrangement in
political union with the United States.
In all of Micronesia they were the only island group to do so.
On January 1978 the Northern Mariana Islands became self
governing in political union with the United States under the
terms of a covenant negotiated between the two government
and the area's first elected governor took office.
For the first time after more than 300 years under the flags of
Spain, Germany, Japan and the United States, the new
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands began its own
destiny.  It has been said that the Spanish brought Christianity
to the islands; the Germans - copra commerce; the Japanese
agricultural and industrial development and the Americans the
concept of self government.
On May 28, 1986 the United Nations Trusteeship Council
concluded that the United States had satisfactorily discharged
its obligations to the islands.  On November 4, 1986 the United
States citizenship was conferred upon those people of the
Northern Marianas that met the necessary qualifications.
On December 22, 1990 the Security Council of the United
Nations voted to dissolve the Trusteeship.
The CNMI Guide would like to thank Mr. William H. Stewart
for providing all the information used in these pages.