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You may not have heard of the Republic of Molossia, but it’s been around for nearly four decades — well, 21 years on land and 39 on paper.
Molossia is a micronation — a tiny, supposedly sovereign country — and it sits on 11 acres of land in Northern Nevada near Virginia City.
Micronations exist worldwide. And though they share features with sanctioned countries, they aren’t recognized by world governments.
Kevin Baugh dreamt up Molossia as a teenager in 1977, and held onto his vision long enough to buy land in 1998 and bring his kingdom to life.
"It is sort of an extension of that idea that kids often have that they declare their bedroom to be an independent country," he said, "We've sort of taken that to the nth degree."
Google Maps labels it a roadside attraction, but its founder insists it’s more than that because, "Google Maps doesn't really have a category for independent country."
Molossia has several residents - seven of them are humans, a navy, a space program, a radio station and its own time zone. They’ll even stamp your passport.
"We are basically a Third World country and so we are always struggling to put things together to make our nation as good as we possibly can," Baugh said.
Baugh said his nation has been and probably will be perpetually at war with the country of East Germany, which it should be noted was absorbed into the Federal Republic of Germany in 1990.
Baugh explained he declared war on East Germany while he was in the U.S. Army and stationed in West Germany in 1983. However, he forgot about it until a few years ago. When he found the declaration of war, he also discovered that a tiny bit of East Germany still existed. It is a tiny island near Cuba that was given to East Germany by Fidel Castro in 1972.
Baugh said the island was not addressed in the 1990 treaty that reunited East and West Germany. And, even though relations between the U.S. and Cuba have improved, no one lives on the island to talk about a truce.
"So, technically, we're still at war with this country and probably will be for a very, very long time," he said.
May 26 was Molossia’s 39th anniversary.
Kevin Baugh, president, Republic of Molossia
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