Belize in the Early 1900s

Late 1800′s & early 1900′s – Expansion of banana and chickle industries. (S)

1919 – Black Belizean soldiers, who had suffered discrimination during World War I in Europe, returned home to protest unequal, racist treatment at home. Samuel Haynes was an important leader in the 1919 riot. He became a member of the United Negro Improvement Association (UNIA) of which Marcus Garvey was the leader. Samuel Haynes wrote our national anthem, Land of the Gods. (M)

1931 – Great hurricane killed over 2000 people in Belize and destroys much of the infrastructure.

1930′s – First inland roads. Villages along the Old Northern Highway were established to move people out of Belize City during the Great Depression. (B)

1934 – A strike for higher wages at a local sawmill turned into a riot. Antonio Soberanis took a role as a leader in the labor movement that developed out of these events. This movement was influential in making many people begin questioning the need for a colonial government.

1930’s – Citrus as an export crop began. (L:119)

1949 – The devaluation of the Belize dollar led to the formation of the People’s United Party (PUP). PUP’s objective was political and economic independence for Belize.