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     Puerto Rican Heritage Org.

     PO Box 1152

     Elgin, IL 60121-1152


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Puerto Rico


Puerto Ricans often call the island Borinquen, from Borikén, its indigenous Taino name, which means "Land of the Valiant Lord".The terms boricua and borincano derive from Borikén and Borinquen respectively, and are commonly used to identify someone of Puerto Rican heritage. The island is also popularly known in Spanish as la isla del encanto, which means "the island of enchantment" in English.

Christopher Columbus arrived in Puerto Rico during his second voyage on November 19, 1493 and named the island San Juan Bautista, in honor of Saint John the Baptist. The first Spanish settlement, Caparra, was founded on by Juan Ponce de León, a lieutenant under Columbus, who later became the first governor of the island. Eventually, traders and other maritime visitors came to refer to the entire island as "Puerto Rico", and "San Juan" became the name of the main trading/shipping port.

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