Bougainville Island

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About Bougainville Island

  • Contained by: Solomon Islands
  • Time zone(s): UTC+10
  • Events: Battle of Koromokina Lagoon

Bougainville Island is the main island of the Autonomous Region of Bougainville of Papua New Guinea. This region is also known as Bougainville Province or the North Solomons. The population of the province is 175,160 (2000 census), which includes the adjacent island of Buka and assorted outlying islands including the Carterets. Although Bougainville Island is geographically part of the Solomon Islands archipelago, the nation of the Solomon Islands is a separate state. The first human settlement of Bougainville occurred some 28,000 years ago from New Ireland. Three to four thousand years ago, Austronesian people arrived, bringing with them domesticated pigs, chickens, dogs and obsidian tools. The first European contact with Bougainville was in 1768, when the French explorer Louis de Bougainville arrived and named the main island for himself. Germany laid claim to Bougainville in 1899, annexing it into German New Guinea. Christianity arrived on the island in 1902. During World War I, Australia occupied German New Guinea, including Bougainville, taking it over as part of a League of Nations mandate. In 1942 during World War II, Japan invaded the island, but it was returned to

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