Kosrae Constitution Day

Kosrae Constitution Day is a holiday observed in Kosrae—one of the four independent states of the Federated States of Micronesia. It is celebrated annually on the 11th of January and commemorates the creation of the Constitution of Kosrae in 1984. This constitution contains a preamble and sixteen articles that outline the rights and freedoms of the people of Kosrae.

Since its adoption, it has been amended four times. It is a holiday celebrated with music, dancing, and cooking with some of the traditional citrus fruits and crops of the island. Dishes can include everything from breadfruit and bananas to crabs, shellfish, and pork or chicken.

The History of Kosrae Constitution Day

Kosrae is an island that has been settled by humans since at least the first millennium, and maybe even longer than that. However, it was not sighted by Europeans until Alvaro de Saavedra of Spain did so on September 14, 1529. It would not be effectively occupied by the Spanish until the end of the 19th century.

After World War I, the Empire of Japan took over control of the island. During WWII, the Japanese fortified the islands, but the island was never attacked. When the war ended, the administration of the island passed to the U.S., which ruled the island as a Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands.

When the Micronesian constitution was rejected in the Trust Districts of the Marshall Islands and Palau, Kosrae joined Yap, Chuuk, and Pohnpei to form the Federated States of Micronesia, or FSM. After the FSM Constitution was adopted, each of the individual states began to develop its own constitution. On January 11, 1984, Kosrae adopted its State Constitution—a day that is still celebrated as Kosrae Constitution Day.

Observing Kosrae Constitution Day

This holiday is observed in Kosrae with students learning more about the constitution, through traditional song and dance, and by enjoying meals with friends and family members. Other events may also occur on this day, including sporting events, fishing competitions, or wrestling matches as well.

Where is it celebrated?
Micronesia (Local holiday)
When is it?
This year (2024)
January 11 Thursday
Next year (2025)
January 11 Saturday
Last year (2023)
January 11 Wednesday