Kosrae Liberation Day

Kosrae Liberation Day is a holiday observed on September 8th on Kosrae in the Federated States of Micronesia. This holiday commemorates the day when the United States liberated Kosrae from German occupation. On Kosrae Island, this day is a public holiday, so people have the day off, and businesses, schools, and non-essential government offices are closed for the day.

Each village on the island has its own way of celebrating this holiday, but some of the more common ways to observe it include a communal feast and sing-alongs. It’s also a day to gather with loved ones and play games.

The History of Kosrae Liberation Day

A dispute between the German Empire and the Spanish Empire was finally resolved near the end of the 19th century under the terms of the Vatican State. The Spanish Navy would end up holding onto the island until the Spanish were defeated by the U.S. during the Spanish-American War of 1898. After the defeat, Spain would sell the Caroline Islands to Germany. During WWI, the island would then come under the control of the Empire of Japan.

During the Japanese South Seas Mandate of 1919, improvements were made to Kosrae by the Japanese, and the island was run by a few missionaries who converted the population to Christianity. During WWII, the Japanese fortified the island, but no major battles occurred on it. When the Japanese were defeated at the end of the war, the administration of the island would be administered by the United States. It’s this day that is celebrated as Kosrae Liberation Day.

Observing Kosrae Liberation Day

This holiday is observed independently by each village with song, dance, games, and food. Breadfruit, yam, and taro are common dishes, as are meats, fish, and rice. It’s a day to enjoy with loved ones and for the people of Kosrae to celebrate their independence.

Where is it celebrated?
Micronesia (Local holiday)
When is it?
This year (2024)
September 8 Sunday
Next year (2025)
September 8 Monday
Last year (2023)
September 8 Friday