Grenada’s Endangered Archives (part 10)

Grenada's Endangered Archives

Update: Grenada National Archives – New hope

Today (3rd March 2015) Grenada’s Information Service (GIS) informs us that:

The University of the West Indies (UWI) has “brushed aside suggestions that the Keith Mitchell administration is to be blamed for the delay in the Open Campus project in Hope St. Andrew“.

Principal of UWI Open Campus (Grenada) Eudine Barriteau made the disclosure in St. George’s after presenting our political cabinet with a proposal for the project.

Claims that the current government was delaying the project have been attributed to opposition sources.

“The feedback is that the cabinet is supportive of the project as we have in fact anticipated, so if they are any misconceptions that there was a delay coming from the government that is totally incorrect”, Barriteau said.

The UWI Open Campus Principal told local journalists that the search for a reliable architect firm was the cause of the delay.

“In fact what was the delay…the Open Campus needed a partnership with a reliable quantity surveying architectural firm and we found that partnership with a firm out of Trinidad and Tobago that has expertise in engineering”.

The Open Campus project in Hope involves two phases during construction.

To us the most significant fact is that the first “Phase A”, which features the construction of administration offices, classrooms, and early child centres, the phase also promises the construction of a National Archives.


Professor on gender and public policy, Violet Eudine Barriteau who is Pro-Vice Chancellor had assumed office as Principal of our University of the West Indies Open Campus (Grenada) on 1st August 2014 (having succeeded then Pro Vice-Chancellor Professor Hazel Simmons-McDonald). Now she has successed Hilary Beckles as new Principal of UWI (Cave Hill, Barbados) from 1st May 2015.

The 60 year old professor Grenadian by birth, with a distinguished record as a Caribbean scholar and administrator, Professor Barriteau has served in various roles at The University of the West Indies for more than 30 years. She holds a PhD in Political Science from Howard University, an MPA in Public Sector Financial Management from New York University and a BSc, Upper Second Honours in Public Administration and Accounting from The University of the West Indies. She also holds a professional certificate in editing and scholarly publishing from the International Rice Research Institute in Los Baños, the Philippines.


20/07/2012: Government of Grenada hands over land to UWI
09/08/2012: Grenada to get UWI campus
11/10/2013: Open UWI Suppliment


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Grenada Heritage: Vital Records


When will Grenada be able to Discover their family history.

Since 1974, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) has been extracting records of births/baptisms and marriages from filmed records in its collection for countries around the world. Most of these extracted records are indexed by name in the International Genealogical Index (IGI) available on

However, IGI / FamilySearch has *NOT* indexed much of Grenada’s vital records.

Fortunately as of October 2017 serveral of the Grenada Church Family Registers have been digitized and are (with heavy restrictions) now available to view online. Recently the LDS have offered more locations from which to view these records through their Family History Centres and their Affiliates, however in the Caribbean, there none on Grenada and only one (often broken) computer each on Barbados, St Vincent. You may also get access from the one on each island of Trinidad, Martinique, Guadaloupe, Antigua, and St Kitts, and the five that are reportedly on Puerto Rico. Of cause from the UK, Europe, North America, Canada and Australia you will have hundreds of access points.

The Family History Library Film numbers on file for the seven parishes (St George, St John, St Mark, St Patrick, St Andrew, St David and Carriacou) of Grenada are:

1.1 No. 1523145 – Births for 1866 to 1874
1.2 No. 1523169 – Births for 1874 to 1888
1.3 No. 1523187 – Births for 1888 to 1892
1.4 No. 1523204 – Births for 1893 to 1905
1.5 No. 1523217 – Births for 1905 to 1910
1.6 No. 1523259 – Births for 1911 to 1916
1.7 No. 1523339 – Marriages for 1903 to 1910
1.8 No. 1523352 – Marriages for 1910 to 1918
1.9 No. 1523353 – Marriages for 1919 to 1922
1.10 No. 1523361 – Marriages for 1922 to 1932†
1.11 No. 1523537 – Deaths for 1866 to 1890
1.12 No. 1523656 – Baptisms 1784 to 1932, confirmations 1901 to 1931, marriages of Anglican, slaves, St Pauls, St Luke, St Peter, special, burials, burials of slaves and St Pauls, [not indexed nor digitized]
1.13 Land Registers

The problem is that Grenada’s civil birth records do not name the child it is only the Church Baptism registers which do this. Sadly, too, the only THREE Family History Library (FHL) films that HAVE been indexed are from birth registers:-

Film number 1523145 – This is a copy of parts of the Civil Register of Births from all seven parishes for 1866 to 1875 in twelve items corresponding to batch numbers I02551-1 to 1 to 12.

Film 1523169 – Births from all seven parishes for 1875 to 1882 (eleven batch numbers I02552-1 to 11).

Film 1523187 – Births from all seven parishes for the years 1882 to 1891 (eleven batches I02553-1 to 11).


Film 1523204 – Births from all seven parishes for 1891 to 1905.
Film 1523217 – Births from all seven parishes for 1905 to 1910.
Film 1523259 – Births from all seven parishes for 1910 to 1916.
Film 1523537 – Birth registers – five items 1 through 7 for 1900 to 1935 more specifically –
August 1910 to December 1910 in Carriacou
January 1911 through to June 1915 in All seven parishes
January 1916 through to December 1916 in All seven parishes
Film 1523362 – Index to 3 marriage volumes for 1903 to 1932.
Film 1523339 – Marriages from all seven parishes for 1903 to 1910.
Film 1523352 – Marriages from all seven parishes for 1910 to 1918.
Film 1523353 – Marriages for 1919 to 1922 and 1924 to 1928.
Film 1523361 – Marriages from all seven parishes for 1928 to 1934.
Film 1523537 – Death from all seven parishes for 1928 to 1934.

Film 1523394 – Births from all seven parishes for 1905 to 1924 has not been digitized nor indexed.
Film 1523396 – Births from all seven parishes for 1905 to 1935 has not been digitized nor indexed.
Film 1523429 – Births and Deaths from St John and St Andrew parishes for 1900 to 1932 has not been digitized nor indexed.
Film 1523408 – Deaths all seven parishes for 1909 to 1936 has not been digitized nor indexed.


These four films are the ONLY source of the christian name of a child in Grenada.

Film 1523692 – This most important film and ONLY record of a childs birth-name is of Baptisms, Births, Marriages, Burials all seven parishes for 1798 to 1931 has not been digitized nor indexed.

Film 1523752 – This most important film and ONLY record of a childs birth-name is of Baptisms, Marriages, Marriage Banns, and Burials all seven parishes for 1861 to 1931 has not been digitized nor indexed.

Film 1523767 – This most important film and ONLY record of a childs birth-name is of Baptisms, Marriages, Burials St Mark, St John and Carriacou parishes for 1900 to 1931 has not been digitized nor indexed.

Film 1523656 – This most important film and ONLY record of a childs birth-name is of Baptisms – it also covers other Confirmation, Bann, Marriage, and Burial registers from the Archdeaconry of Grenada in the Anglican Rectory registers (manuscripts) of the districts of St. Luke, St. Peter and St. Paul in the parish of St. George’s, Grenada for the years 1784 to 1971. So this is film covers:-

Item 2 – Baptisms and burials for 1784 to 1804.
Item 1 – Baptisms, marriages and burials for 1806 to 1831.
Item 3 – Baptisms, marriages and burials for 1812 to 1815.
Item 4 – Baptisms, marriages and burials for 1816 to 1831.
Item 5 – Slave baptisms, marriages 1817-1834, burials 1833-1834.
item 6 – Baptisms and marriages for 1831 to 1837.
Item 7 – Baptisms, marriages and burials for 1837 to 1844.
Item 8 – Baptisms for 1844 to 1892.
Item 9 – Baptisms of the district of St. Luke for 1851 to 1884.
Items 10-11 – Baptisms for 1892 to 1932.
Item 12 – Confirmations for 1901 to 1931.
Items 13-14 – Marriages for 1844 to1930.
Item 15 – Marriages for St. Luke and St. Peter 1909 to 1933.
Item 16 – Banns for 1903 to 1931.
Item 17 – Special marriage register 1912 to 1942.
Items 18-19 – Burials 1844 to 1930.
Item 20 – St Paul Marr. 1861-1902, Bapt. 1860-95, Bur. 1861-1971.

FamilySearch do run ‘projects’ to continue the indexing of FHL films on file. However they insist:-

Information about upcoming collections is not made available prior to publication due to various factors that can affect the publication time line, such as contract agreements with record custodians or partnership societies, final assembly considerations, server capacity, geographic considerations, prioritization of collections at risk, delivery type, and so forth”.
Further “…there is no specific time frame for the publication of indexing projects, since they are governed by the same considerations as indicated above“.

This terrible situation may only be overcome by having everyone making a request that the entire GRENADA COLLECTION be added to their online collections, to do this please follow these instructions:-

1. Go to the FamilySearch website (
2. Scroll down to the bottom of the page, and click on the Feedback button.
3. Click on Share your ideas, and post to request ALL OUR FILMS BE INDEXED AND PUT ONLINE.

Or use a direct link to FamilySearch “Send Us Feedback” website. Then click on Share your ideas and post your request.

Note: Posting does not guarantee that will be able to acquire the collection or have rights to publish it, but the requests will be seen by those who make decisions about which collections are published.

A further note: Much earlier French records from the era 1765-1790 of Grenada’s history have now been digitized and can be freely viewed online via the British Library EAP website at link, link, link, link, and link.

Grenada’s Endangered Archives (part 8)

Grenada's Endangered Archives

Grenada’s endangered archives programme (EAP295)

Update: Grenada National Archives – New access

Wonderful news – the link from the British Archive’s Catalogue to our Endangered Digital Collection is now live (as of 01 Aug 2014). So, for example, on this page , click on ‘Browse this collection’. On the new page, you can now click ‘View digital version’.

This is the British Library Catalogue search screen. Using the referecnce to one of our Endangered Archives series, “EPA295/2/6/1” for example, we can then see the option to “Browse this collection”…

You will then be taken to this screen listing our “Endangered Archives Programme” collection held on the British Library service. As you can see you are now able to “View digital version” of the collection.

Here is the screen showing the thumbnails and actual JPEG images of the scanned archives. In this case one of the 82 pages of the “Court of Oyer and Terminer for Trial of Attained Traitors record book” for 1796 from the “Collection of court records held by the Grenada Supreme Court Registry” for 1765-1797. Reference EAP295/2/6/1.

Note: The “JPEG” imaging standard is an acronym for the Joint Photographic Experts Group (defined in RFC 1341) a commonly used method utilizing a lossy compression for digital images. This compression inherently degrades the actual quality of the image, therefore loosing vital detail information. More commonly, images created by digital cameras are now recorded in the RAW (unprocessed) image format based on the ISO 12234-2 standard (or TIFF/EP). Although not confirmed we believe the BA has the original images in RAW format.

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Grenada’s Endangered Archives (part 7)

Grenada's Endangered Archives

Grenada’s endangered archives programme (EAP295)

Update: Transcription from Grenada’s Archives Published

Dr Laurence Brown (University of Manchester) has published a 73 page transcription of images from “Court of Oyer and Terminer for Trial of Attained Traitors record book 1796” [part of Grenada’s endangered archives digitised series EAP295/2/6/1]. It includes notes, the transcription and an alphabetical list of names from 1796.



Note: A page is missing between 037 and 038 (it was never copied). It containes trial information for 8th August 1796.

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Grenada Heritage At Risk: Carriacou cemetery vanishes

The Good News

One of Grenada’s most important commodity is Tourism.  All our other resources are equally important and of cause should be regarded hand-in-hand with our Tourism Resources.  On the 9-11 of July 2014 the Center for Responsible Travel (CREST) held the 3rd Symposium for Innovators in Coastal Tourism here at St. George’, Grenada. This event brought together over 150 ‘green’ experts and practitioners, including hoteliers, real estate developers, operators, investors, and others within the tourism industry committed to (or considering) new sustainable models of marine, coastal, and island tourism development and management.  Over 40 of these international tourism experts spoke on various aspects of sustainable coastal and marine tourism and the event was even represented for us by our Minister of Tourism and Alexandra Otway-Noel, who bolstered Grenada’s enthusiasm for a sustainable future through tourism, and stating action is already underway. View the Symposium Proceedings.

The Down Side

Sadly none of this covered our Historical or Heritage acpects of the island of Grenada – a very important commodity for tourism, our island community and the education of our young.

“Natural.” “Eden.” “Genuine.” “Safe.” “Paradise.”  “Pristine.” “Unspoiled.”

Russ Jarman Price was telling the audience at this international symposium that these and many other words had been offered to describe our island nation of Grenada. Collecting such descriptors was one step in the process that his team used in coming up with its new “Pure Grenada” marketing campaign. The new brand had provoked local controversy, even though the “pure” theme is intended to help spur Grenada into becoming a model of sustainability for the region – you will see it used all over Grenada’s new tourism site.

The conference represented the Grenada’s next step in staking out that claim: A three-day symposium on Innovations in Coastal Tourism, held this month at St. George’s University in Grenada. CREST, the U.S.-based Center for Responsible Travel, organized it. Symposium discussions moved along two closely related tracks: How to practice coastal tourism more responsibly in a world of rising seas, declining ocean quality, and growing tourism pressures, and more specifically, how to do so in Grenada and the Caribbean. (Shockingly Jonathan Tourtellot also spoke at the symposium, but the compete Caribbean development fund covered his travel expenses.)

Jarman Price was sensitive to the audience, the majority of cause Grenadian – the Ogilvy’s campaign “Pure Grenada: Freedom to Wonder” had been systematically thought out. For those who don’t know he is the Executive Creative Director for Inglefield/Ogilvy & Mather Ltd (the Caribbean part of global advertising giant Ogilvy) and a local resident.

Many have encouraged Grenada for several years to adopt a geotourism approach focused on its numerous unique qualities (though they constantly forget Heritgage) and the Pure Grenada was characterized as a geotourism rebranding campaign when Ogilvy introduced it in February of this year. National Geographic Society have defined geotourism as “tourism that sustains or enhances the geographical character of a place—its environment, culture, aesthetics, heritage, and the well-being of its residents.” A great fit for Grenada.

Unfortunately, things had not gone smoothly back in February.

Symposium speakers Andy Dumaine and Todd Comen check out a bin of nutmeg husks, from which mace is made, at the Belmont Estate. Photo: Jonathan Tourtellot.
Symposium speakers Andy Dumaine and Todd Comen check out a bin of nutmeg husks, from which mace is made, at the Belmont Estate.

Jarman Price admitted, the new brand rolled out “in isolation,” with the usual inadequate community preparation. Partly because of that—rebrandings often get public push-back anyway—a storm of controversy arose. Many Grenadians objected, mistakenly assuming the new slogan was intended to replace Grenada’s long-standing identity as the “Spice Island,” a nod to its many nutmeg trees. After much politically hyped debate, PM Keith Mitchell himself had to intervene, yielding the camel-like compromise “Grenada, the Spice of the Caribbean” – oh how we continue to show our ignorance!

Make of that what you will. The intent of Pure Grenada was to underscore what is considered the real reason to visit: The island is one of the last to offer a broad and authentic Caribbean travel experience. Grenada still has beauty, a benign climate, rich culture and heritage, good beaches, still-viable nature on land and in the sea, and relative freedom from intrusive mass tourism.

Can Grenada Pull It Off?

The question is whether our country can retain and build on that distinction. Like other islands, Grenada copes with numerous challenges—overfishing, sand mining, unemployment, irresponsible development, care-less attitute to heritage, limiting-unencompassing education. Take for example the terrible loss of our wave-swamped cemetery on our sister island of Carriacou – it has become an emblem for the Caribbean’s accelerated sea level rise. Certainly since the financial crisis, but truely even before the 1970’s, our government has basically been financially broke, and many of us Grenadians are therefore eager to grab at any economic opportunity, sustainable or not – with no care for the longer term stategies to protect our island and including our heritage for our youth (those who will become custodians in long after we’re gone).

Sockingly at the Symposium we were reminded that someone on Carriacou had chopped down about seven acres of mangroves to make room for a big new marina!  That environmental insult, which most certainly contributed to the demise of one of ancient cemeteries, was mentioned repeatedly at this symposium—a pimple of the face of Pure. In ignorance apologists often argue for a “balance between growth and conservation” in such cases. Sustainable marketing consultant Andy Dumaine grumbled when he heard that: “It’s not an either-or”.  Other endangered cemeteries are the  Mt. Airy cemetery in St. Paul’s and the church yard cemetery of St. Paul’s Anglican Church (the graves are literally sliding down an embankment into a ravine).

Indeed, Dr. Angus Friday, our current ambassador to the United States and Mexico, encouragingly believes sustainability is economic opportunity. He sees Grenada as taking a global lead in renewable energy and conservation for small island nations. While diplomatically not mentioning those missing mangroves, he argued, “Our natural capital is principal in the bank. We need to weave this into our DNA”. This implies that Good businesses don’t invade principal.  Is Friday in the minority when he hopes that Grenada can develop in a way that disrupts the standard model of Caribbean tourism—“Become the Airbnb of responsible travel”.

Let us hope it can be done and the symposium itself seemed quite successful. (Presentations here.)

At a geotourism meeting the next day, it became clear that many of our boutique hotel owners that dominate the Grenada tourism market don’t want to see huge all-inclusive resorts or more big cruise ships. But tourism growth is so much more than these two areas.  At a rural exposition on another day, many of our local artisans and ‘entrepreneurs’ took the opportunity to show off wares unique to our island, keen to grow their businesses through ‘responsible tourism‘. They had set up their booths at Belmont Estate, which itself has become one of our well-known agritourism attractions in the Caribbean.

Local entrepreneur Modesty makes Grenadian-themed fashions and hopes to add employees. Photo: Jonathan Tourtellot.
Local entrepreneur Modesty makes Grenadian-themed fashions and hopes to add employees.

And what about those spices? Grenada’s big three are nutmeg, mace, and cinnamon. One visitor  remembers landing at the Grenada airport long ago, entering the terminal, and immediately smelling these telltale scents. However the Symposium visitor detected no such pleasant odor when they arrived this time.  What an opportunity missed, and an other aspect of our heritage dies!  Research tells us that the brain’s wiring for memories and for smells are directly linked one another. Why not once again suffuse the airport arrival and departure halls with delicious fragrance?  Do that, and every time for years after, when we former visitors smell cinnamon on a roll or nutmeg in the eggnog, we’ll remember:

Ah, Grenada.


Contibutor Jonathan Tourtellot of National Geographic Traveler
CREST is a non-profit research instituteat Stanford University (Washington, DC) founded in 2003.


Grenada Heritage: Biographies


A biography is a history of a person’s life. A biography may give you birth, marriage, and death information and the names of parents, spouse, children, or other family members. Use the information from a biography cautiously because there may be inaccuracies.

You may locate individual or family biographies in the Surname Search of the Family History Library Catalog.

Biographies have been gathered and published in collections of biographies, sometimes called biographical encyclopedias or dictionaries. These usually include only biographies of prominent or well-known subjects. However, some collections of biographies are of specific groups such as ministers, musicians, painters, poets, radicals, or writers.

It is important to note that currently there is little in the way of individual or collective biographies on individuals born in Grenada or for those who have had great influence or participation in Grenada politically, socially, or otherwise. One would hope this will change in the future.

If your ancestor played an important part in a group or occupation, do a Place Search for Grenada in any British, Scottish, Canadian, North American, and Latin American biography archives, since people of note may be recorded in these. Although Grenada has little to do with Latin America many historical groups have collected Caribbean information which can include biographical details from Grenadian figures. Little work has been done on collections of biographies of African, Indian, or Portuguese descendant who have lived and died on Grenada’s islands.


For prominent historical figures, leaders, artists, businessmen, or religious the following sources may help:

  • American National Biography, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003. (Print) ($).

Some Prominent Names

This is a small list of prominent figures in Grenada’s long history – it is neither definitive nor complete. Further, it must be noted that, as is the case with all biographies, those listed here are neither the complete truth nor the whole life of the given individual.

Name (A) Biographical link
Arthur, James Stanley (1923–2010) Oxford University Press, 2014
Augustine, Fennis Lincoln Oxford University Press, 2014
Name (B) Biographical link
Beharry, Johnson (1979–) Damian Lynch, Garrick Hagon, and Nick Cook. Barefoot Soldier. Sphere, 2006
Benjamin, John (1934–2010) The Cultural Biographies of John Benjamin & Fernande Laas. S.l: s.n, 1990
Bishop, Maurice Rupert (1944–1983) Howard, Johnson. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009
Blaize, Rt. Hon. Herbert Augustus (1918-1989) Oxford University Press, 2014
Brizan, George Ignatius (1942–2012) Brave Young Grenadians: Loyal British Subjects…. Trinidad & Tobago: G. Brizan, 2002
Browne, Charles Macaulay (1885-) Oxford University Press, 2014
Butler, Tubal Uriah (1897–1977) O, Nigel B. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007
Bynoe née Gibbs, Dame Hilda Louisa, DBE (1921–2013) Collins, Merle. The Governor’s Story: The Authorized Biography of Dame Hilda Bynoe, 2013
Name (C) Biographical link
Charter, Joseph Stephen (1943-) Oxford University Press, 2013
Clyne, Reginald H. (1891-1974) Against the Currents. S.l: s.n., 1996
Coard, Frederick McDermott D. (1893-) Bitter-sweet and Spice: These Things I Remember. Ilfracombe: Stockwell, 1970
Coke, Rev. Thomas (1747–1814) A Journal of the Rev. Dr. Coke’s Third Tour Through the West Indies. London: G. Paramore, 1791
Collins, Merle (1950-) Bloom, Harold. Caribbean Women Writers. Philadelphia: Chelsea House, 1997
Cugoano, Ottobah Narrative of the Enslavement of Ottobah Cugoano…. Chapel Hill, N.C.:, 1999
Name (D) Biographical link
Davis, Hon. Sir Maurice Herbert (1912-1988) Oxford University Press, 2014
De Gale, Sir Leo Victor (1921-1986) Oxford University Press, 2014
Name (E) Biographical link
Ellis, George (1753-1815) J, M R, and Mills Rebecca. Ellis, George. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004
Name (G) Biographical link
Gairy, Sir Eric Matthew (1922–1997) Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004
Gentle, Eileen Before the Sunset: A Memoir of Grenada. Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue, Quebec: Shoreline, 1999
Gibbs, Oswald Moxley (1927-1995) Oxford University Press, 2014
Glean, Sir Carlyle Arnold (1932-) Oxford University Press, 2013
Graham, Sir Samuel Horatio (1912–1999) Oxford University Press, 2014
Grant, McGodden Kerensky “Cacademo” (1917-1982) Brathwaite, Shirley R. Cacademo Grant: Hero of the People’s Revolution. St. Georges: Printed by Government Printery, 1983
Granger, Winifred Held Captive: Memoirs of a Caribbean Woman. Trinidad: Phyllis Andrews, 2012
Grenada, 15 Dedicated 15 Dedicated Men and Women Who Have Served Their Country. National Democratic Congress Presents. Grenada: s.n, 1990
Grenada, Colonial Administrators Colonial Administrators and Post-Independence Leaders in Grenada Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005
Name (H) Biographical link
Henry, Sir Denis Aynsley (1864–1925) Oxford University Press, 2014
Herb, Ras Rehabilitation or Death., 1991
Hughes, Alister Earl Hewitson (1919-2005) Lewis, Paula. Alister Hughes: Glimpses into the Life of a Great Grenadian. St. Patrick, Grenada: Belmont Estate Heritage Foundation, 2004
Hutchinson, Leslie Arthur Julien ‘Hutch’ (1900-1969) Breese, Charlotte. Hutch. London: Bloomsbury, 1999
Name (K) Biographical link
Keens-Douglas, Richardo (1953-) Solomon, Frances-Anne. Believe – with Richardo Keens-Douglas. Toronto, Ont: Literature Alive Corp, 2005
Kent, Dr. Edward Roy (1920-2009) Kent, Edward, and Susan Payetta. Up Before Dawn. Grenada: Sail Rock Publishing, 2011
Name (L) Biographical link
Lewis, Sir Arthur (1915-1991) Transcript of the World Exclusive Radio Programme: Sir Arthur Lewis, His Life, Achievements and Thoughts. Castries, St. Lucia?: R. Lalljie, 1993
Lorde, Audre Geraldine (1934–1992) James, D S. Lorde, Audre. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003
Name (M) Biographical link
Mackenzie, Lt-Gen. Colin (1806-1881) A, J A, and T S. Roger. Mackenzie, Colin. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004
MacQueen, James (1778-1870) Gordon, Goodwin, and Baigent Elizabeth. Macqueen, James. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004
Marryshow, Hon. Theophilus Albert (1887-1958) Sheppard, Jill. Marryshow of Grenada: An Introduction. Grenada: s.n., 1987
Marshall née Burke, Valenza Pauline ‘Paule’ (1929-) Triangular Road: A Memoir. New York: Basic Civitas Books, 2009
Mcintyre, Sir Meredith Alister (1932-) Oxford University Press, 2013
Name (P) Biographical link
Palmer, Sir Reginald Oswald (1923-) Oxford University Press, 2013
Paterson, Nicholas Julian (1867-) Oxford University Press, 2014
Phillips, Harold Adolphus (1929–2000) James, McGrath. Phillips, Harold Adolphus. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012
Pigott, Sir Arthur Leary (1749-1819) R, A M. Pigott, Sir Arthur Leary. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004
Pitt, David Thomas (1913-1994) Mike, Phillips. Pitt, David Thomas, Baron Pitt of Hampstead. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004
Protain, Gertrude Isobel (-2005) Compton, Shadel N. Gertrude Isobel Protain: Glimpses into the Life of a Great Grenadian. St. Patrick, Grenada: Belmont Estate Heritage Foundation, 2004
Purcell née Orgias, Joan M. (1942-) Memoirs of a Woman in Politics: Spiritual Struggles of Joan M. Purcell. St. George’s, Grenada, W.I: J.M. Purcell, 2007
Name (R) Biographical link
Robertson, James Burton (1800-1877) Thompson, Cooper, and Lloyd Myfanwy. Robertson, James Burton. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004
Roux, Phillippe de Le Marquis de Casaux, un Planteur des Antilles, Inspirator de Mirabeau. Paris: Société de l’histoire des Colonies Françaises; en vente: Libraire Larose, 1951
Name (S) Biographical link
Scoon, Sir Paul Godwin (1935–2013) Survival for Service: My Experiences As Governor General of Grenada. Oxford, England: Macmillan Caribbean, 2003
Shrewsbury, Rev. William James (1795–1866) Memorials of the Rev. William J. Shrewsbury. London: Hamilton, Adams, 1867
Name (W Biographical link
Watts, Sir John Augustus Fitzroy Oxford University Press, 2013
Wharton, Arthur (1865-1930) Phil, Vasili. Wharton, Arthur. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004
Williams, Eric Eustace (1911-1981) Palmer, Colin A. Eric Williams & the Making of the Modern Caribbean. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2006
Williams, Sir Daniel Charles (1935-) Oxford University Press, 2013

You may find some collections under the localities listed above and then the subject “GENEALOGY.”



Author: Ric Greaves

Grenada Heritage: Our Plantations – part 3

James Evan Baillie

We know little of the man as a person, however, we can see from the records that he was a very astute businessman that would not seem out of place in a modern-day big-city financial sector only to be given accolades for his cleaver choices.  Only in hindsight, giving the context in which he and his family made financial acquisitions and the period they are set will the modern reader consider possibly branding James Evan Baillie (and his family) as tyrants dealing in the assets of slavery. Maybe today some would even set up a “Nuremberg trial” or a “McCarthy Committee” to pursue their decedents?

Born in 1781, he was the son of Evan Baillie (1742-1835), the merchant of Bristol and Dochfour, Inverness and Mary Gurley (daughter of Peter Gurley of the island of St. Vincent).

James became a London and Bristol merchant and banker (of the firm Baillie, Ames & Baillie), and was a major and astute recipient of slave compensation across the Caribbean.

James is described as thus by Rubinstein: “His family moved from being successful West Indies planters to bankers in Bristol”. 1  This was in 1812 when James had become a partner with his brother, Colonel Hugh Duncan Baillie (of Red Castle and Tarradale), as the two took over the management of the family firm (now ‘Bristol Old Bank’) on the death of his eldest brother Peter.

In 1829 James ‘acquired’ Redland Court mansion (Bristol, England) and 150 acres surrounding farmland from Sir Richard Vaughan, following Vaughan’s bankruptcy. This was because six years earlier Vaughan had mortgaged the estate to their company Elton, Baillie & Co (the Old Bank).
James later became a Member of Parliament (Whig) for Tralee (1813-18) and then in the 1830 Parliamentary elections for Bristol (1830-35), James Baillie and Edward Protheroe both stood for the Whig seat in Bristol (Bristol had two Members of Parliament, and the two seats were divided between the Tory party and the Whig party: voting at this time was not very democratic). Protheroe, whose family were involved in trade with the West Indies, declared himself opposed to slavery. Baillie, also from a West Indian trade family, supported slavery. A number of leaflets were published by both candidates attacking each other and promoting their own views. In the election, Baillie won the Whig seat by 535 votes.


James was a large-scale purchaser of Scottish land, acquiring Glentrome in Badenoch (£7,350) in 1835; Glenelg, Western Highlands (£77,000) in two years later; Glenshiel (£24,500) the following year; and Letterfinlay (£20,000) in 1851.

He appears never to have lived at Redland Court, the occupant being William Edwards, a partner in the Old Bank 1816-52. But he left the Redland estate to his nephews Evan Baillie (of Dochfour) and Henry James Baillie (MP of Elsenham Hall Essex), plus James Leman his attorney as trustees. They sold Redland Court for development and the house is now Redland High School. 2

James lived at 1 Seamore Place, Curzon Street Mayfair both in the 1830s and at his death on 14 Jun 1863. He remained unmarried and died leaving £120,000.

Grenada Plantations

Levera Estate Plantation, St. Patrick’s, Grenada

Levera Estate belonged to a Mr. Snell in April 1785. 3

At a later date Alexander Fraser (1759-1837, of Inchcoulter, Kiltearn, in Rosshire, Scotland) came to Grenada in the late 1790s, he was instrumental in raising money there for the Northern Infirmary in Inverness. In 1806 he purchased his Inchcoulter estate and created the village of Evanton there.  Alexander was also a friend of William Smith (of Revolution Hall) and was mentioned in his Will to receive £2000.  It is certain that in 1825 Alexander owned plantation Levera Estate.

Following the act of 1811 abolishing the slave trade the colonies instituted registers of negroes lawfully held in slavery. A further act of 1819 established an Office for the Registry of Colonial Slaves in London, England.  Finally in 1834 slavery was abolished in British colonies and to ensure it effectiveness the act of 1833 provided a sum of £20 million to ‘compensate slave proprietors’. Its distribution was entrusted to a Slave Compensation Commission which began to meet in October 1833 and was terminated at the end of 1842.

On the 9th November 1835 Alexander Fraser (as owner-in-fee) made a contested claim to this Slave Compensation Commission.  It was for 94 slaves at Levera Estate for £2759 1s 0d.  However a successful counterclaim from Hugh Duncan Baillie, James Evan Baillie and George Henry Ames, all of the City of Bristol, as ‘Assignees for the whole compensation money’. 4

Hermitage Estate Plantation, St. Andrew’s, Grenada

Alexander was also in charge of the Baillie’s plantation Hermitage, and was described, at this time, as a ‘planter of experience’. He was probably also a member of the Grenada Council. He  married Evan Baillie’s niece (Emilia Duff of Muirton) ‘some years ago’ and when his son was born in Grenada in 1800/01 the couple named the child Evan Baillie Fraser (1800-91). 5

By 1807 he was regularly described as ‘late of Grenada’ indicating that he was now resident in the UK. In 1812, with the death of Evan Baillie, Alexander Fraser entered into a partnership with Evan Baillie’s third son, James Evan Baillie, trading as JE Baillie, Fraser & Co of London. This company, dissolved in 1820, consisted of James Evan Baillie, Alexander Fraser, Hugh D Baillie, George H Ames and George Fowler. 6

On the 23rd January 1836 a compensation claim was made for 149 slaves at Hermitage Estate, Grenada for £4030 4s 3d by Evan Baillie (who we know was by this time deceased), as trustee on behalf of the proprietors of the Estate.

The previous part-owners were Colin Chisholm (MD of Bristol d.1825) and the Baillie brothers’ father James Baillie (MP of Bedford Square and Ealing Grove, d.1793).

A failed counterclaim was attempted by fishmongerer Rowland Ryley (of 3 Orange Street, Red Lion Square, England), based on a grantee of an annuity of £185 18s, secured by assignment of a legacy bequeathed by the Will of James Baillie Snr.  In this case J. H. Forbes acted as agent for the Baillies and secured in their favour. 7

John Sleeper, in 1860, declared “The Hermitage was one of the finest plantations in Grenada. It was pleasantly situated on elevated ground, a few miles from the sea shore, and was the residence of Mr. Houston, a gentleman of great respectability, who was attorney for the for the estate, and also the plantation adjoining, called Belmont.”  The previous owner, an Englishman name Bailey (sic) “had spared no expense in stocking the grounds with fruits of various kinds…”.  Sadly Houston had the axe freely used to chopped down all of these trees to make way for sugar cane crop. 8

Revolution Estate Plantation, St. John’s, Grenada

The Revolution Hall Estate, at the time overseen by Joseph Barlow, existed during the 1795 ‘insurrection’. It was described in 1845, as “a rich, fertile sugar estate, about two or three miles from the neat looking village or town of Goyave”.

On the 9th May 1836 a claim was made on 168 slaves at Revolution Hall Estate for £4210 16s 8d this belonged to Richard Oliver Smith, owner-in-fee, mortgaged by him on his second marriage.  However successful counterclaims by the Baillie brother, as mortgagees and assignees of a legacy of £580 and upwards and his mortgagers back in England for £4105 meant he gained nothing. 9

Richard Oliver Smith (May 1788 – ????) lived n Britain from c. 1793 to 1833. He was the illegitimate son of the Grenada slave-owner William Smith and Sarah Jean (or Dean, then ‘living with’ him) in Grenada.

His father Williams’s Will dated 15 July 1793 (registered 08 November 1794, but with handwritten note on margin ‘proved 30 April 1803’) shows an annuity of £150 later £700 to his lawful wife Elizabeth Smith (with a claus to revoked it if challenges); Sarah Jean was to stay in the house at Revolution Hall, £100 currency immediately, annuity of £150 sterling. £2000 sterling left to pay interest to children ‘being known and called by the descriptions following ‘Mary Smith now in England and Grace Smith in Grenada’, and to Richard Oliver Smith ‘now in England aged 5 years and 2 months’.

He was first married to a Harriet Gee in St Pancras (London, England, 21 August 1806) with whom he had a daughter Emily (b. 1808 Chelsea, Middlesex). Richard divorced Harriet for adultery an on 18 August 1819 married for a second time, to Mary Broderip (daughter of Edmund Broderip), in St. Cuthbert Church, Wells, Somerset, England. They had a daughter, Elizabeth Georgiana (bapt. 1828 Exeter, Devon). 10

A set of accounts for the Revolution Hall Estate exists for the year 1821 (held at the Burke Library, Hamilton College, Clinton, N.Y.) the 50 pages are accompanied by a copy of the conveyance of Revolution Hall to William Smith (dated 1771) and also by copies of letters to William Smith about the unprofitability of the plantation in the years 1832-33.  The Account book deals with maintenance, supplies, shipments of rum, and wages and includes lists of slaves on the estate on 31 December 1821, giving name, occupation and age of each. Also lists livestock.

Identified as of Gower Street on 23 July 1822 when he served as trustee for a marriage settlement and on 18 February 1833 a quitclaim appears between Richard Oliver Smith and his fellow trustees (Rogers Weatherall and Francis Broderip) where Richard is ‘released from trusteeship’ to live in West Indies when it appears to have moved to Grenada c. 1833.  The couple possibly had a son as well, Richard Joseph Sanderson Smith ( c. 1837 Trinidad), who went on to marry Pauline Josephine Nicholson in Middlesex in 1859. 11

His first daughter Emily Smith went on to marry Rev. John Nurse in Grenada in 1835.

Known Family Relationships – father Evan Baillie (1741-28 Jun 1835), brothers Hugh Duncan Baillie (31 May 1777-21 Jun 1866), first cousins Hugh James Baillie (1786-????), Alexander Baillie (13 Nov 1777-24 Jan 1835), Janet Higgins (née Baillie, 1773-1841), Colin Campbell Lloyd (née Baillie, 1781-1830).



  1. William D. Rubinstein, Who were the rich? 1860- (Volumes 3 and 4, manuscripts in preparation), reference 1863/2.
  2. Bristol Record Office 6682/40 for Baillie’s involvement, and deeds of Redland High School purchase.
  3. Laws of Grenada and the Grenadines: From the Year 1766 to the Year 1852, No.XVII p.48
  4. Parliamentary Papers p. 99. T71/880: claim 690.
  5. David Alston, Slaves and Highlanders,
  6. London Gazette,, 05/05/1821.
  7. Parliamentary Papers p. 312. T71/880: claim 701.
  8. Jack in the Forecastle, John Sherburne Sleeper, 1860, p.342-3.
  9. Parliamentary Papers p. 312. T71/880: claim 591.
  10. Familysearch batch no. M51385-3, I01821-5 and C05051-2., London, England, Baptisms, Marriages and Burials, 1538-1812
  11. Settlement, quitclaim and mortgage P89_TRI/130 1822-1835.