Indian communities dot the landscape of present-day Costa Rica.
Chorotegas, or "fleeing people," arrive from southern Mexico, bringing with them a highly developed civilization.
On September 8, Christopher Columbus lands near present-day Puerto Limon during his fourth voyage to the Caribbean. He calls the region La Huerta (The Garden).
By now the region is known to the Spanish as Costa Rica-"the rich coast."
September 15, Costa Rica officially declares independence from Spain after Guatemala declares independence for all of Central America.
During March and April, Costa Ricans repel an invading army sent by an American adventurer, William Walker.
General Tomas Guardia overthrows the government and institutes a number of forward-looking reforms.
Dr. Rafael Angel Calderon Guardia serves as president, leading a reform movement that favors the poor.
When Calderons party loses the election and he refuses to step aside, Jose Maria (Don Pepe) Figueres Ferrer leads a 40-day revolt that gives power to Calderon's opponent in the election.
November 7, Costa Rican legislature ratifies the current constitution.
Figueres continues many of Calderon's reform policies and puts in place his own, including abolishing the military.
Costa Rica issues a proclamation of neutrality in response to civil wars in Central America.