Located about a thousand miles from Florida in the Caribbean Sea, Puerto Rico is a United States territory—but it's not a state. Puerto Rico had been a Spanish colony since the 16th century. Spanish forces quickly quelled an armed independence insurrection in 1868 and gave it more autonomy. Everything changed when the US declared war on Spain in 1898, and the colony was transferred to the US after the war via treaty. Since then its been a battle for more autonomy, statehood, or independence.