Bismarck Archipelago facts for kids
The first inhabitants of the Archipelago arrived around 33,000 years ago after sailing from what is now Papua New Guinea. Later arrivals included the Lapita people.
The first European to visit these islands was Dutch explorer Willem Schouten in 1616.
The islands remained unsettled by western Europeans until they became part of the German protectorate of German New Guinea in 1884. The area was named in honor of the German chancellor Otto von Bismarck.
Following the outbreak of World War I, the Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Force seized the islands in 1914 and Australia later received a League of Nations mandate for the islands. They remained under Australian control – interrupted only by Japanese occupation during World War II – until Papua New Guinea became independent in 1975.
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Bismarck Archipelago Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.