Saint Helena

For alternate uses, see Saint Helena (disambiguation).

Saint Helena refers to both an island and administrative unit in the South Atlantic Ocean 2,800 km off the west coast of Angola, and to the British Overseas territory that includes it and the dependencies of Ascension and Tristan da Cunha; this article describes both. The United Nations Committee on Decolonization includes St. Helena on the United Nations list of Non-Self-Governing Territories.

Administrative Unit Area (km2) Population 1998 Capital
Saint Helena (administrative area) 122 5157 Jamestown
Ascension (dependency) 88 1122 Georgetown
Tristan da Cunha (dependency) 200 284 Settlement of Edinburgh
Overseas Territory
410 6563 JAMESTOWN

The island of Saint Helena (administrative area), including tiny satellite islets and rocks like Castle Rock, Speery Island, The Needle, Lower Black Rock, Upper Black Rock (South), Bird Island (Southwest), Black Rock, Thompson's Valley Island, Peaked Island, Egg Island, Lady's Chair, Lighter Rock (West), Long Ledge (Northwest), Shore Island, George Island, Rough Rock Island, Flat Rock (East), The Buoys, Sandy Bay Island, The Chimney, White Bird Island and Frightus Rock (Southeast), all of which are within one kilometer of the shore, but excluding the dependencies of Ascension (1270 km Northwest) and Tristan da Cunha (2420 km SSW), is further subdivided into eight districts:

District Area (km2) Population 1998
Alarm Forest 5.9 279
Blue Hill 36.5 175
Half Tree Hollow 1.6 1126
Jamestown 3.6 864
Levelwood 14.0 373
Longwood 33.4 951
Sandy Bay 15.3 254
Saint Paul's 11.4 893
SAINT HELENA (Island) 121.7 4915

The dependencies do not have a comparable subdivision into districts. For Ascension, which - apart from a few tiny satellite islands and rocks - consist of just one island, usually a breakdown by the five settlements is given. For Tristan da Cunha, which has just one settlement, but consists of several separate islands, usually a breakdown by islands is given.

Saint Helena
Flag of Saint Helena
coat of arms
(In Detail) (Full size)
National motto: Loyal and Unshakeable
Missing image

Official languageEnglish
Political status Overseas territory of the UK
Capital Jamestown
Governor and
Michael Clancy
Area 410 km

 - Total (2003 E)
 - Density

Currency Saint Helenian pound (SHP) at parity with the UK Pound Sterling (GBP)
Time zone UTC +0
National anthem God Save the Queen, My St. Helena Island (unofficial)
Internet TLD .sh
Calling Code 290


See main article History of Saint Helena.

The island was uninhabited in 1502 when it was discovered by Portuguese mariners.

Like every remote island in the age of sail, it was a crucial resource for sailing ships that ventured into its waters. (The important ships among these were of naval and commercial nature.) Its position on the only practical route, until construction of the Suez Canal, between Western Europe to the Indian Ocean enhanced that general role. It became a British military garrison for those reasons.

Napoleon Bonaparte spent the last part of his life in exile on St. Helena. Prominent Anglo-Boer War prisoners, including General Piet Cronje were also detained on St. Helena.


See main article Demographics of Saint Helena.

St. Helena has a small population that remains loyal to Britain. However, the island's diminutive size and geopolitical insignificance has led many Islanders to accuse the British government of ignoring the island.


See main article Economy of Saint Helena.

The island's economy was a one crop economy for many years, but is now very weak, and is almost entirely sustained on aid from London.

The St. Helena tourist industry is heavily based around the promotion of Napoleon's imprisonment. Two sites where Napoleon lived and the valley where he was buried are French territory.

The Saint Helenian pound is the local currency, and is on a par with the Pound Sterling. The government of St. Helena produces its own coinage and banknotes.


See main article Geography of Saint Helena.


See main article Politics of Saint Helena.


See main article Communications on Saint Helena.


See main article Transport on Saint Helena.


See main article Military of Saint Helena.

Missing image
Map of Saint Helena

External links

Countries in Africa

Algeria | Angola | Benin | Botswana | Burkina Faso | Burundi | Cameroon | Cape Verde | Central African Republic | Chad | Comoros | Democratic Republic of the Congo | Republic of the Congo | Cte d'Ivoire | Djibouti | Egypt | Equatorial Guinea | Eritrea | Ethiopia | Gabon | The Gambia | Ghana | Guinea | Guinea-Bissau | Kenya | Lesotho | Liberia | Libya | Madagascar | Malawi | Mali | Mauritania | Mauritius | Morocco | Mozambique | Namibia | Niger | Nigeria | Rwanda | So Tom and Prncipe | Senegal | Seychelles | Sierra Leone | Somalia | Somaliland | South Africa | Sudan | Swaziland | Tanzania | Togo | Tunisia | Uganda | Zambia | Zimbabwe | Western Sahara

Dependencies: Canary Islands | Ceuta and Melilla | Madeira Islands | Mayotte | Runion | Saint Helena and dependencies

ca:Santa Helena

da:Sankt Helena de:Sankt Helena es:Santa Helena fr:le Sainte-Hlne he:סנט הלנה id:Saint Helena io:St Helena nl:Sint Helena (eiland) ja:セントヘレナ lt:Šv. Elenos sala no:St. Helena pl:Święta Helena (kolonia) pt:Santa Helena sl:Sveta Helena sv:Sankt Helena zh-cn:圣赫勒拿岛 zh-min-nan:Sng Helena


  • Art and Cultures
    • Art (
    • Architecture (
    • Cultures (
    • Music (
    • Musical Instruments (
  • Biographies (
  • Clipart (
  • Geography (
    • Countries of the World (
    • Maps (
    • Flags (
    • Continents (
  • History (
    • Ancient Civilizations (
    • Industrial Revolution (
    • Middle Ages (
    • Prehistory (
    • Renaissance (
    • Timelines (
    • United States (
    • Wars (
    • World History (
  • Human Body (
  • Mathematics (
  • Reference (
  • Science (
    • Animals (
    • Aviation (
    • Dinosaurs (
    • Earth (
    • Inventions (
    • Physical Science (
    • Plants (
    • Scientists (
  • Social Studies (
    • Anthropology (
    • Economics (
    • Government (
    • Religion (
    • Holidays (
  • Space and Astronomy
    • Solar System (
    • Planets (
  • Sports (
  • Timelines (
  • Weather (
  • US States (


  • Home Page (
  • Contact Us (

  • Clip Art (
Personal tools