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
The Formation of the Northern Mariana Islands (25 to 50 Million B.C.)
The geologic event forming the Marianas archipelago occurred during
the eocene epoch, a time when dinosaurs had already become extinct,
plants, fishes and invertebrate mammals had developed and the major
mountains of the world had begun to rise.
Man would not appear for another 25 to 50 million years, a period so
distant from the present as to equal 350,000 to 700,000 human life spans.
A theory known as plate tectonics presumes that the Asian continent
and the North and South American continents are moving and that the
Lithosphere (crust) of the continents are composed of different material.
The edge of these plates are believed to be moving  in such a manner that
one moves under the other and the cataclysmic forces that result push
material upward to form islands.
The CNMI Guide would like to thank Mr. William H. Stewart
for providing all the information used in these pages.