This list provides codes for places existing at the time the list was compiled.  The names of the places are also those current at the time of compilation.  Changes in the status of places as well as changes in names are reflected in revised versions of this list.  The following discusses how such changes are presented in the list.

When a place has changed its name, the existing code is retained but the new name is used and the earlier name is added as a reference.  For example:

Sri Lanka [a-ce]

UF    Ceylon


USE  Sri Lanka

When it becomes necessary to change a code because the status of an entity has changed, notes are added to the list to explain the code changes and the date the change was made.  If the old code is discontinued, it is retained in the code list for information.

The code for the latest name (the new code) should be used in all new records.  The old code, however, will not always be changed in previously input records.  Thus when using geographic area codes to retrieve records, if the code for the entity has changed since the implementation of an earlier code list, it is advisable to specify both the new and previously assigned (historical) codes in the retrieval request if records coded prior to the changes are desired.

The following are examples of events that lead to changes in the codes.

One entity assigned a single code splits into two or more separate entities.

In this case, each of the new entities is assigned a new code, and the code for the older combined entity is discontinued.  Notes are also added to each entity indicating the date of the code change.  For example, Gilbert and Ellice Islands split into Kiribati and Tuvalu:

Gilbert and Ellice Islands Colony

[Coded [pogn] (Gilbert and Ellice Islands) before Mar. 1988]

Assigned codes:

[pokb]  Kiribati

[potv]  Tuvalu

Kiribati  [pokb]

[Coded [pogn] (Gilbert and Ellice Islands) or [poln] (Line Islands) before Mar. 1988]

Tuvalu  [potv]

[Coded [pogn] (Gilbert and Ellice Islands) before Mar. 1988]

One entity previously assigned a code is annexed by another entity which is already assigned a different code.

In this case, the code for the annexed entity is discontinued, and the annexed entity is assigned the code for the annexing entity.  For example, Sikkim was annexed by India:

India  [a-ii]

Sikkim (India)

[Coded [a-sk] (Sikkim) before Mar. 1988]

Assigned code:

[a-ii]  India

An entity which was assigned the code of another entity splits off.

In this case, the code for the existing entity is retained, and a new code is created for the entity which split off.  For example, Mayotte split off from Comoros:

Mayotte  [i-my]

[Coded [i-cq] (Comoros) before Mar. 1988]

Comoros  [i-cq]

See also: