Location of CULEBRA
in the Map of Puerto Rico
Isla Culebra (IPA: [ku 'le br?]) (Snake Island) is an island-municipality of Puerto Rico originally called Isla Pasaje and Isla de San Idelfonso. It is located approximately seventeen miles east of the Puerto Rican mainland, twelve miles west of St. Thomas and nine miles north of Vieques. Culebra is spread over 5 wards and Culebra (Dewey) Pueblo (The downtown area and the administrative center of the city). The island is also known as Isla Chiquita (Little Island) and Ultima Virgen (Last Virgin). Residents of the island are known as Culebrenses.
Christopher Columbus was the first European to discover the island in 1493. The island was populated by Taíno Indians prior to this and would be used by pirates as a refuge for more than 3 centuries.
In 1875, a black Englishman named Stevens was made the first governor of Culebra by the government of Vieques. He was given the task of protecting the island and the fishermen who used the nearby waters from pirates. He was assassinated later that same year. Culebra was then settled by Cayetano Escudero Sanz on October 27, 1880. This first settlement was called San Ildefonso, to honor the Bishop of Toledo, San Ildefonso de la Culebra. Two years later, on September 25, 1882 construction of the Culebrita Lighthouse began and it was completed on February 25, 1886. It was the oldest operating lighthouse in the Caribbean until 1975, when the U.S. Navy and Coast Guard finally closed the facility.
In 1902, Culebra was integrated as a part of Vieques. One year later, on June 26, President Theodore Roosevelt established the Culebra Naval Reservation. A bird refuge was established on February 27, 1909. In 1939, the U.S. Navy began to use the Culebra Archipelago as a gunnery and bombing practice site. This was done in preparation for the United States' involvement in World War II. In 1971 the people of Culebra began protests, known as the Navy-Culebra protests, for the removal of the U.S. Navy from Culebra. Four years later, in 1975, the use of Culebra as a gunnery range ceased and all operations were moved to Vieques.
Culebra was declared an independent island municipality in 1917. The first democratically elected government was put into place in 1960. Prior to this, the government of Puerto Rico appointed delegates to administer the island.
The Culebra flag consists of five vertical stripes, three alternate yellow and two green ones. The yellow central stripe has the map of Culebra in green.
 Coat of Arms
This crown consists of sterns of two ships with their sails filled by the wind. The cross and the episcopal walking stick symbolize Bishop San ldefonso, because originally the island was called San ldefonso de la Culebra. The serpent (culebra means serpent) symbolizes its name. An armed arm from the Coat Of Arms of the Escudero family, first settlers of the island. The laurel cross refers to the civic triumph reached when Culebra obtained the evacuation of the United States Navy from the island.
Reference: Wikipedia.org / census.gov / mapquest.com