History, Danish Authority Established
century Greenland, Hans Egede, northern Greenland, Permanent Court of International Justice, American expedition
The foundation of Danish rule was laid by a mission at Godthab (now Nuuk) in 1721 by a Norwegian missionary, Hans Egede. In the 19th century Greenland was explored and mapped by numerous explorers and navigators. From 1930 to 1931, British and German expeditions made weather observations on the inland ice north of the Arctic Circle. In 1933 an American expedition sponsored by the University of Michigan and Pan-American Airways engaged in meteorological research more than 545 km (more than 340 mi) north of the Arctic Circle.
The United States relinquished its claim to land in northern Greenland, based on the explorations of the American explorer Robert Edwin Peary, when it purchased the Virgin Islands from Denmark in 1917. In May 1921, Denmark declared the entire island of Greenland to be Danish territory, causing a dispute with Norway over hunting and fishing rights. In 1931 a strip of land on the east coast was claimed by some Norwegian hunters, whose action was later recognized by the Norwegian government. The occupation was invalidated by the Permanent Court of International Justice at The Hague in 1933.
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