The evacuation of Tristan da Cunha

The 264 inhabitants of the island of Tristan da Cunha were evacuated to Cape Town on October 10th, 1961.

Refugees from Tristan da Cunha at a church service in Cape Town. Getty Images/Time Life

Refugees from Tristan da Cunha at a church service in Cape Town. Getty Images/Time LifeIn 1506 a Portuguese sea-captain called Tristao da Cunha came across a group of six little islands far out in the Atlantic between South Africa and South America. The largest of them, which he named after himself, has a volcano in the middle. The British annexed the islands in 1816 and a population slowly formed from members of a temporary British garrison, shipwrecked sailors and other Europeans, as well as women from other islands. By 1886 there were 97 inhabitants, clustered at the settlement of Edinburgh on Tristan da Cunha.

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