Home News Local news DANISH ARCHIVES TO BE PRESERVED

DANISH ARCHIVES TO BE PRESERVED

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In an historic signing ceremony at Government House, the Danish Ambassador to the United States, K.D. Tygesen, Danish Minister of Culture Elsebeth Gerner Neilsen and Gov. Charles Turnbull paved the way for the preservation and sharing of historical records between Denmark and the US Virgin Islands.
"When Danish rule of the West Indies ended in 1917," said Neilsen, "many of the records were removed to the Danish National Archives in Copenhagen."
This meant Virgin Islanders have had difficulty gaining access to their history and identity.
"People must have access to that historic information to trace families. Denmark finds it imperative to make this information available here," she said.
The signing of an agreement to share the archival history of Denmark and the Virgin Islands will make this possible.
Turnbull called the documents "historic ties to the rich and diverse cultures of both governments."
The Danish government has committed $300,000 to the project, which is expected to take four to five years to complete.
The documents are currently stored in a number of places in Denmark, the Virgin Islands and the United States.
A program involving surveying, preserving and documenting all records on microfilm will be undertaken by the Department of Planning and Natural Resources. This will also include an educational program to train Virgin Islanders in the Danish language and in archival procedures.
The historical records will be copied for eventual transfer to the Virgin Islands.
"This is a testament to the deep and lasting connections between Denmark and its former territory," said Turnbull. "These documents represent the historic ties of the rich and diverse cultures of both governments."
"The characters of Frederiksted, Christiansted and Charlotte Amalie are testament to the deep and lasting relationship of the US Virgin Islands and Denmark."

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