Filed under Caribbean history

Did A Mini Ice Age Cause European Slave Trading?

Did A Mini Ice Age Cause European Slave Trading?

I’ve always been aware that the Middle Ages in Europe and the Tudor age were colder than the present – with famous ice fairs on the Thames in Tudor times. But it was also a time of gruesome punishments, tortures and plagues and churches seemed to be full of images of skeletons, dances of death … Continue reading


Jews and Slave Trading

Jews and Slave Trading

The British Labour party seems to be ripping itself apart on a number of levels, one of which involves the matter of anti-semitic comments. Jackie Walker, vice chair of Momentum, the group that supports its present leader, Jeremy Corbyn, Momentum, made some comments that were deemed offensive, and was suspended for claiming Jewish people financed … Continue reading

The Horniman Museum

The Horniman Museum

This is a wonderful venue in the far south of London which is home to the collections of a single man, so provides us with not just an incredible amount of items, from stuffed animals to cultural artefacts, to music instruments, and a room full of international curiosities, a dinosaur room and a small aquarium. … Continue reading

Medieval Trade & Slavery

Whilst trawling for information on foundlings, I stumbled upon this story, which I had heard of, but knew nothing about. This is from The Medieval World Europe 1100-1350 by Frederick Heer: “The great economic and political power of Italian finance would have been impossible without overseas trade. From the mid-eleventh century the Italian maritime cities … Continue reading

A Flogging In Jamaica

At times the stories of Silas Told seems to be over romanticised, but this account is one of the most realistic seeming parts of the book. It also sheds light on the sort of people who were involved in the trade – in his instance, he had no choice in it. This is from his … Continue reading

Montserrat Apple Tree

This is from The Life of Silas Told, his first job on a sailing ship as cabin boy; they arrived at Monstserrat to procure the rest of their cargo to return to England: “This island chiefly consists of numerous lofty and barren mountains with an unnavigableharbour, rendered so by a multiplicity of small sharp-pointed rocks, … Continue reading

A Hurricane in Jamaica

This is from The Life of Silas Told, his first job on a sailing ship as cabin boy: “As we were riding at anchor in Kingston harbour, the capital of Jamaica, waiting for a freight to England, a very great noise was heard in the atmosphere, similar to that of splitting wood, and the elements … Continue reading

Protecting Indians in Jamaica

This is more from Captain – brother of the poet Robert- Southey’s Chronological History of the West Indies. I have no date for this, but again, late 18th early 19th century: “The assembly at Jamaica, to prevent the traders of that island from stealing and selling the children of their friends the Mosquito Indians, passed … Continue reading

A Shipwreck

This is from the journal of Sir Henry de la Beche, pioneer of geological surveys and heir to a plantation in Jamaica, as edited by Richard Morris, one of his descendants . Henry was about ten when he and his mother  were returning from a visit to their property in 1800, As it was war … Continue reading