Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands

Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands

Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands
United Nations Trust Territory




Flag Coat of arms
Location of the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands in the Pacific.
Capital Saipan
Languages English
Government Trust Territory
Chief of State
 -  1947–1953 (first) Harry S. Truman
 -  1993–1994 (last) Bill Clintona
High Commissioner
 -  1947–1948 (first) Louis E. Denfeld
 -  1981–1987 (last) Janet J. McCoyb
Historical era Cold War
 -  Trusteeship July 18, 1947
 -  Free Association October 1, 1994
 -  1980 1,779 km² (687 sq mi)
 -  1980 est. 132,929 
     Density 74.7 /km²  (193.5 /sq mi)
Currency United States dollar
a. Clinton was President when Palau's Compact of Free Association took effect. Ronald Reagan was President when the RMI, FSM, and CNMI's final status took effect.
b. McCoy retired as High Commissioner in 1987. As Palau was still a part of the TTPI, it was administered by officials in the Office of Territorial and International Affairs until 1994.
Map of the TTPI from 1961

The Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands (TTPI) was a United Nations trust territory in Micronesia (western Pacific) administered by the United States from 1947 to 1986.


Arrival of UN Visiting Mission, Majuro, 1978. The sign reads "Please release us from the bondage of your trusteeship agreement."

The territory comprised the former South Pacific Mandate, a League of Nations Mandate administered by Japan and taken by the U.S. in 1944.[1]

The TTPI entered UN trusteeship on July 18, 1947 and was designated a "strategic area" in its 1947 trusteeship agreement. As such, its formal status as a UN trust territory could be terminated only by the Security Council, and not by the General Assembly as with other trust territories. The United States Navy controlled the TTPI from a headquarters in Guam until 1951, when the United States Department of the Interior took over control, administering the territory from a base in Saipan.[2] A Congress of Micronesia first levied an income tax in 1971. It affected mainly foreigners working at military bases in the region.[3]

On October 21, 1986, the U.S. ended its administration of the Marshall Islands District. The termination of U.S. administration of the Chuuk, Yap, Kosrae, Pohnpei, and the Mariana Islands districts of the TTPI soon followed on November 3, 1986. The Security Council formally ended the trusteeship for the Chuuk, Yap, Kosrae, Pohnpei, Mariana Islands, and Marshall Islands districts on December 22, 1990. On May 25, 1994, the Council ended the trusteeship for the Palau District, after which the U.S. and Palau agreed to establish the latter's independence on October 1.

Current status

The area is now divided into four territories:

Sovereign states in free association

The following sovereign states have become freely associated with the United States under the Compact of Free Association (COFA).

Unincorporated organized territories

See also


  1. ^ Encyclopædia Britannica: Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands
  2. ^
  3. ^ Micronesia's Simplified Tax System
  4. ^ "Northern Mariana Islands". CIA World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency. March 27, 2014. Retrieved April 5, 2014. 

External links

Media related to at Wikimedia Commons

  • Photos from the records of the Trust Territory Government
  • 1967 Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands Census Geography