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The Republic of the Corner Islands (French: République des Îles du Cornets), commonly referred to as Corner Islands, are an archipelago as well as a nation of four small islands in the Northern Atlantic Ocean.
The islands were discovered as early as 850 A.D. when Norse raiders destroyed homesteads and monasteries in the Azores and the Amperes, and find the islands while sailing toward North America. They establish settlements on the Corner Islands as well as the Kelvin and Greater Bermuda Islands. The settlements were abandoned, and the second discovery of the island were in the 16th century by several French explorers (first Jacques Cartier) and settlers who colonized the islands. Basseterre became the capital in 1537.
In 1536, 36 cows were left on the island of Grand Corne, and 40 in St Francois with settlers. They were used for milk and to make the famous St Francois cheese. Sugarcane was brought in 1548 and became the main economic source, especially for Europe's export. Since it was closer than Cuban sugar plantations, it went to Europe faster and became successful. Originally servants of indentures and migration workers were the main labor force. By the 1650s slaves were the major quantity of the labor force.The Corner Islands remained part of France until the mid-twentieth century. On June 2nd 1960 Corner Islands was given independence by France.
Today, 15% of the people are Atlantic Aborigines of mixed Caucasian and African origin. They settled in Petit Corne island and St Juste. Atlantic Aborigines in the Corner Islands were subjugated by successive waves of invaders. Atlantic Aborigines were driven to the brink of extinction by European diseases such as smallpox in the 16th century. Today the natives remain the poorest on the Corner Islands but since the 1990s have seen a general rise of quality of living in part due to local Affirmative Action policies and opportunities from the booming tourist industry.