Since then, radio broadcasting in the country has been transformed not only in terms of communications technology, but also content and program formatting. In the year , the start of the Second World War, Mr. Andrew, was called into official service by Governor Sir Arthur Richards. This was partly the result of the need to communicate War related information, such as those concerning prices of food and other necessities set by the relevant authorities.
The first broadcast was made on the 17 th day of November Initially, the station operated on 4. By , the hours of daytime broadcast had reached as far as four hours. A day after the handover, the story made headlines in the local newspapers. At this juncture, Mr. Dennis M. Gick, an English man, became the chief manager of the station and the broadcasting content went beyond that of War related information to involve musical entertainment. On experiencing and forecasting high financial costs associated with operating the station, the government decided to venture into commercial broadcasting and in franchised it to the Jamaica Broadcasting Company JBC — a subsidiary of a British radio organization.
After much deliberation and negotiation, the Company was granted a ten year license from the Government which stipulated terms and conditions of operation. Later, the Rediffusion was dropped from its name. By this time there had been a drastic increase in radio headsets as well as listenership, the former over 22, and the latter surpassing , The name change resulted from an effort to prevent conflict between the two entities. However, as radio broadcasting technology developed, listeners could avail themselves of not only A. Radio broadcast format was virtually transformed as it became more encompassing and diverse.
Notable historical events that were broadcasted by means of radio includes: the visit of Her Majesty the Queen in ; and commentary regarding the West Indies Federation Referendum in The s also saw the establishment of a number of radio stations including Irie F. Today there are more than twenty radio stations in operation. Senior, Olive. Encyclopedia of Jamaican heritage.
Andrew: Twin Guinep Publishers Ltd, Meets All Exco. The Jamaican Government also did not have sufficient funds for this venture. Two English brothers, William and David Smith, asked the Government to allow them to build the railway and this was to become the first railway in the British West Indies. They began building the railway in on a standard gauge line i. The survey plans and estimates for the line were prepared by James Anderson, a civil engineer of Edinburgh.
By late the railway was completed and was subsequently opened on November 21, by the Governor, Lord Elgin. Invited were, His Excellency the Governor, the Lieutenant Governor, several heads of departments, civil and military personnel, the honourable members of the Council and Assembly, and a large number of wealthy and influential members of the community. The railway was 14 miles long and ran from Kingston to Spanish Town.
The band of the first West Indies Regiment took its stand in the last third class carriages and added to the festivity of the scene. People lined the route and cheered and waved as the train went by at a slow pace. From its opening until , the line was operated by the Jamaica Railway Company, owned by the Smith brothers. David Smith was the manager of the line and his brother William, the first civil engineer. Four tunnels were built, the longest of which was the Gibraltar tunnel near Bog Walk, which is yards long.
Despite the many lines which had been laid, the north coast of the island had still not been reached. The Government saw that they would not be able to pay for the laying of the lines across the mountains. Therefore, in , they sold the company to the West Indian Improvement Company. In , the line to Montego Bay was opened. This line was 66 miles long and ran from Porus to Montego Bay.
The line from Kingston to Montego Bay was now about miles long and its tunnels were cut through rocks. The Port Antonio 54 mile extension from Bog Walk was reached in It included the ft. Until the opening of the new ft. The mountain lines were now all laid. The construction of these lines created a vast drain on the resources of the West India Improvement Company and like the Smith Brothers they did not make the success of operating the railway as they had hoped.
In and they defaulted on the first mortgage bonds. In the shareholders assumed control of the line, finally defaulting to the Government in April The end result was good for the government, it had sold the line at a handsome profit, had the two most difficult sections constructed for it, and now had control of the line again.
It is interesting to note that the mountain sections of Jamaican railways are among the most difficult standard gauge mountain railways in the world. In , Mr. James Richmond took over as General Manager of the railway for the Government, and set about improving the operations of the system.
More locomotives were ordered including three unusual Kitson-Mayer articulated locomotives. In the first of various classes of tender engines were ordered from the famous American firm of Baldwins. The total route mileage — i. Many new lines were laid after the Government took over. In April a short spur line from Linstead to New Works was opened and was followed later in the year by a 13 mile line from May Pen, along the banks of the Rio Minho to Chapleton. The ten mile extension to Frankfield from Chapleton was authorized at the same time and the contract was awarded to the Canadian firm of Bedford Construction.
It was to include a yard tunnel and a ft. The line was not to be opened, however, until Diesel rail cars. During the World War, various engines were brought in by the U. Transportation Corps. Five large tender engines, the biggest work in Jamaica, were among these, along with a few small shunting engines. The War also saw the construction of two new lines- a two and a half mile line from Bodles to the U.
Special hopper trains ran from there to Port Esquivel via Spanish Town. Trains also ran from there to Port Esquivel. From 1st May , the Fort Simmonds line was closed and uprooted as the upper three miles of the line had been taken over by Alcan Jamaica Ltd. This was also the only place on Jamaican Railways where semaphore signals had been installed to control train movements.
Apart from the Jamaica Railway Corporation lines, there were also a number of other railway lines in the island. In early the Jamaica Railway Society was formed. This was a society whose membership was open to anyone interested in railways, either professionally or as a hobby. However, the financial crisis had led to a backlog of deferred maintenance, with stock and buildings also neglected.
The condition of the track resulted in the line closing once more in In October public rail transport services finally ceased operating in Jamaica, although private industrial linesThe Gregory Park Station continue to operate in part today. Public passenger service resumed in the island, for the first time since February , when an inaugural train operated from May Pen to Linstead on April 16, Regular service was planned to begin in July, with three round-trips per day between Spanish Town and Linstead, with extensions to Williamsfield and Gregory Park image on right opening in September and December, respectively.
The railway service has again proven to be inefficient and is therefore again on hold. Forsythe, H. Railways of Jamaica: an Outline History. Kingston: The Jamaica Railway Society, As a site of historical importance, its history was shaped by its experiences within two significant colonial periods. These periods are the Spanish from and the English from Ann as the capital of Jamaica, the area was found to be swampy and unhealthy. According to the King of Spain,.
After staying a couple of years at this location, Pedro Mazuelo Island Treasurer decided to spearhead a search party in order to locate a more suitable site for the capital. While making his way across the island, he came upon a wide fertile plain on the banks of the Great River now Rio Cobre, which had long been cleared and cultivated by the indigenous Arawaks. Mazuelo also observed that the area was suitable for settlement hence his remarks to the King,.
From its foundation Spanish Town became the center of Jamaican life and history. A lively commercial route was organized under Spanish administration, between Jamaica, Spain and other Spanish territories. In addition to the commercial activities that went on in Spanish Town, a formal political structure was established under Spanish government. Despite these general advancements of the capital, there were systematic attacks on Jamaica and other Spanish territories by European nations to loosen Spain stronghold in the Caribbean.
The result of t these attacks was a demoralized Spanish community, who according to a report made in , which read. After experiencing repeated attacks the country finally fell to the English on May 10, under an expedition led by Admiral William Penn and General Robert Venables. This marked the end of Spanish occupation in Jamaica. On arrival the English realized that the people had loosened their cattle and fled to the neighboring Cuba.
The soldiers in retaliation looted and destroyed the town, which would ironically inhibit later attempts at settlement. When the English began their attempts at settlement they were unable to completely restore the structures that were previously destroyed. To worsen their situation, they were not used to the climate and tropical diseases took an early tool on the new settlers. They also had to contend with Maroons who were freed Negroes or slaves who had escaped from the Spaniards and had fled to the mountains. The Maroons attacked the English quarters in the capital and the other parishes consistently slaughtering soldiers and setting fire to houses occupied by the English settlers.
It took some time for Spanish Town to recover from many unfortunate circumstances. During this time Port Royal operated as the capital. During that time many distinguished visitors were welcomed to Spanish Town. After Port Royal was devastated by the earthquake of June 7, Spanish Town regained its supreme position and remained that way for nearly years. By , serious rivalry from lobbyists caused increasing speculation about the continued suitability of Spanish Town as the capital.
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To worsen the situation on the heels of The Morant Bay Rebellion of , Sir John Peter Grant ordered the removal of the capital to Kingston which, with its spectacular harbors and major trade links had come to be considered the natural capital of the island. After the capital was removed Spanish Town lost much of its life and grandeur.
To date Spanish Town is considered as a town of significant historical value in this hemisphere.
It boasts the oldest iron bridge of its kind in the Western Hemisphere, which was erected in at a cost of four thousand pounds. It also had one of the first Spanish Cathedrals to be established in the new world. This was built around Most religious denominations have churches or meeting halls in the town. In the town standing untouched in character is an historic alms-house and a public hospital and a maximum penal institution built in the eighteenth century. There is in the town itself a factory where dyes are made from logwood, and a rice processing plant. In the neighborhood are five large sugar estates, a milk condensary and a large textile mill — significant contributors to the changing social and economic patterns of the Old Capital.
The Parish of St. Mary is situated on the north-eastern side of the island. It is comprised of approximately square kilometres of mainly hilly terrain of shale rock and limestone. It has an intricate web of surface and under-ground drainage which contributes to the lushness of the vegetation. A Handbook of St. After the English finally captured Jamaica from the Spanish in , the area around the north coast town of Puerta Santa Maria became known as St.
Mary and the chief town as Port Maria. The importance of St. Mary in the history of Jamaica is in many ways un-rivaled. Throughout the centuries the parish has undergone many social and political changes. Today it is a place of several communities at different stages of development. Agriculture forms the main base of the local economy, with tourism a fast-growing sector. Both industries have vast potential for growth and if given the required attention can contribute much to improving the lives of the people of St. Mary was one of the most important plantation regions during the period of slavery and the people of the parish, like the rest of Jamaica, are mainly descendent from the Africans brought to work on the several plantations found throughout the parish.
The descendents of the other peoples remain and while most slaves took the surname of their owners, names like Goffe and Marsh and the physical features of some of the persons bearing the names are strongly suggestive of an English heritage. The Silveras, another well-known St.
Mary Maroons and the parish has amongst the largest number of East Indians in the island. The cultural and artistic traditions of St. Mary reflect a mixed heritage typical of Jamaica. It is a heritage that is rich and vibrant.
One of the most important is the religious heritage — particularly Christian. If Jamaica can be said to have more churches per square mile than any other country then the same may be said of St. Mary among the parishes. This is what some say accounts for the reputed humble nature of the people and the low crime rate.
Albany is the home of a small community of Muslims. Other traditions prevail, some of them a mixture of sacred and secular practices. Most notable among them is an African-derived ring play or song and dance, the Dinki Mini. Indigenous to the parish, this form was originally practiced in connection with funeral ceremonies but may now be performed on other celebratory occasions. Other similar expressions such as the Kumina, Revival and Pocomania are seen in sections of the parish. Many of these practices are integral to the way of life of many communities and attempts are made to preserve them, mainly through the efforts of the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission and its Annual Festival of the Arts.
Many individuals and groups from St. The include balladeer Beres Hammond and actor Oliver Samuels.
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Mary has a thriving community of painters, woodcarvers, sculptors, craftworkers and ceramists. The Clonmel Potters are among the more well-known of these artists and their high quality products have found ready markets. On the culinary side St. Mary is said to have a taste for curry, reflective of the Indian heritage and fish and bammy , related to the coastal location of many of the major towns. Coconut dishes and, of course, banana are also favourites. Mary is a sports-loving parish.
The St. Mary Cricket Association is s aid to have been at one time the best run rural club in Jamaica. It can be hardly disputed that for monuments, historic buildings and ruins St. Mary is one of the richest parishes. Several Great Houses in various conditions of repair and their vast acreages speak volumes of a by-gone plantation era. Stately church buildings dating back to the 18th and 19th centuries can be found in Port Maria, Retreat, Islington, Annotto Bay and other communities.
Monuments to the memory of the slave warrior Tacky, the distinguished 18th century legislator, Sir Charles Price and those who took part in the Battle of Rio Nuevo, among others, have been established. In addition to these historic sites, St. Mary is possessed of extreme physical beauty.
The lush, green interior, winding rivers like the Wag Water, beautiful mountains and the attractive coastline are certainly sights to behold. With all these attributes St. In the year , the then reigning monarch King Charles II, instructed Thomas Lynch, Lieutenant-Governor of Jamaica, to make all the necessary arrangements for the establishment of a Post Office in the island.
This royal action ensured for Jamaica the honour of being the first British Colony to establish its own Post Office. In connection with the proposed Post Office, masters of vessels trading with Jamaica were instructed to take good care of letters entrusted to them, and told that when a place for the receipt and dispatch of letters had been set up in the island, all private persons would be prevented by law from carrying mails. Roused to action by this letter, London at once requested the authorities in the island to take action, and by order of the Council of Jamaica, which met at St.
Jago de la Vega on 21 September , the Marshal was ordered to go on board every vessel and receive all letters, both from master and passengers. He was further instructed to make a list of all the letters received and to give receipts for them. For this service he was empowered to charge a small fee of 3d. However, this was short lived as Martin later disappeared and by , there was again the need for a new postmaster. Wales also had close ties with the Island, having used Jamaica as his base for much of his mercantile activity.
He jumped at the oppor tunity offered to him in England to take over the Post Office in Jamaica. Thus, in , the Duke of Albemarle, Governor of Jamaica, ordered an investigation into the operations of the Post Office. He was made responsible for the receiving and dispatching of letters and packets to and from England, and had the power to take for his own use such postage rates as were proportional to the rates established for the erection of the Jamaican Post Office. Thomas Neale therefore had a monopoly, all other persons being forbidden to erect similar offices in these lands.
Early in the s the external mail service was, for about a decade, well handled by Edward Dummer who provided a regular service from Portsmouth in England via Barbados, Antigua, Montserrat and Nevis to Jamaica. During this period it was deemed important to have mails stamped with the name of the point of origin on all letters.
Earlier letters bearing the Jamaican handstamp may exist but to date none have been located. It could be that many of the letters from this period never reached their destination. Jamaica was growing fast — the population moving into new areas. The sugar industry began to reach new heights emphasing the need for better communication. Letters often had to be duplicated or triplicated in order to ensure that correspondence reached its destination. Communication with Britain and the other islands was of great importance. The mail service had to be efficient.
This fact was realized in Britain and Edward Dismore arrived in to take up the office as Postmaster General of Jamaica. Dismore was determined to do a good job and, while some of his actions were unpopular, he set about to create a fine postal service and network of Post Offices for the island. The Post Office profits had grown and Dismore was accused of not handing over to the Jamaican Government their full share of the revenue but, Dismore received the full support of the Crown and was in fact returning the profits to the British Post Office, he kept his position.
It was Dismore who set up what are today some of the key Post Offices of the Island. The foundations laid by this man speak highly of his ability and of the importance Jamaica was to Britain to have had such a fine postal system established so early. The evidence presented by early correspondence from Chief Justice Peter Heywood to Colonel Charles Long shows that in , a regular stagecoach service operated between Kingston and Spanish Town but it is not known whether it carried mail, though it would appear it did.
It is debatable how long the arrangement lasted and there are no records in Jamaica of the existence of the stage. Until the advent of the Railway in , mail had been conveyed by slave, post boy or mule over a system of five post roads organized to cover all the district offices. Even though the service was extremely slow, it did ensure at least one weekly post to even the most remote parts of the island. At first, the railway only covered a small area between Kingston, Spanish Town and later, Old Harbour, although it was responsible for an easing of postal costs and a subsequent reduction in postal rates for letters sent between any two points on the railway.
The mail for the outlying districts however, continued to be carried by mule until , when the state of the railway became so chaotic that the Postmaster General terminated the mail contract and spent L per annum on the transportation of mail by road between Kingston and Spanish Town. The idea of a subsidized mail-coach service, with an initial capital of L6,, had been raised some years earlier but no decision had been reached and it was not until the cessation of the conveyance contract, that public complaints of mail delays began to arrive from the northern parishes and His Excellency, the Governor, ordered two mail-carts to be manufactured in England to begin the service.
It first arrived at Spanish Town on August 19th , when it was brought in by Mr. Allwood, the Post Office Inspector, having taken one and a half hours to cover the distance of thirteen miles from Kingston. Clumsiness and weight proved to an insurmountable obstacle to its correct functioning and it was soon retired and finally scrapped.
By the end of , complaints regarding the slowness of the mails had reached a new height and the Government ordered the subsidization of a light mail-coach to operate between Old Harbour and Mandeville, the latter being considered a good centre for the distribution of mail for parts of the northern and western parishes. From onwards, mail was again conveyed by rail but the services to other districts continued to be made by mule, the new mail-coach and later, by mule carts. In , the first mule-drawn mail-coach was put into operation between Kingston and St. Since then, the motor mail-coach service has been considerably extended and the entire island is now covered by a network of small official services, connecting with many tiny villages and larger offices.
Their recommendations resulted in a series of Travelling Post Offices being established from onwards, which were intended to operate between several of the larger centers of population. These T. Each van was equipped with letterboxes and when halted in a village where the mail had already closed, letters could be posted therein and dealt with, although none of the units offered a counter service to the public.
Perhaps few people are aware of the dynamic role the Post Office has played in the history of Jamaica. The romance of the early days where mail was so uncertain of getting to its destination that letters had to be duplicated many times and still ran the risk of being captured by the privateers, is relatively unknown to the public. With technological advances and the advent of email the Post Office has had to become more innovative in order to be more competitive and meet the challenges of modern day.
They have had to offer wider and more varied services. Post Offices are now offering banking services; they are also taking advantage of modern technology and a few of the larger ones are establishing Internet Kiosks for the benefit of members of the public. Hopwood, Stephen. Foster, Thomas. Highway Travelling Post Offices in Jamaica. The Postal History of Jamaica Heralded by songs and dances and shouts of jubilation, through the streets of Kingston and all Jamaica, the independence sun dawned bright and clear on August 6, Bells swelled it out in schools and churches, children, adults and the aged gathered at schools, churches, homes, parks, community centres.
There were marches, dances, concerts, bonfires, fireworks and races, parties and treats of all kinds. The younger children were given sweets and balloons. Every one received tokens and mementos of various kinds. On this occasion her Royal Highness Princess Margaret, the Earl of Snowdon, the leaders of government and all the officials along with 20, Jamaicans came together at the National Stadium to witness the birth of a new nation. There was a parade followed by prayers of dedication offered by the various heads of churches in Jamaica. The Rt.
Percival W. Gibson prayed:. Look down O Lord upon our country and crown our independence with faith, hope and courage. Send down thy light and thy truth that they may lead us into paths of fellowship and peace. Then at one half minute to midnight the lights went out and darkness descended upon the stage as the Union Jack which had flown in Jamaica for years slowly slithered down the flagstaff for the last time.
The people looked up with pride. Fireworks went up and there were cheers of jubilation as the long desired day had finally arrived. Jamaicans were no longer British subjects, but citizens of their own country. The island has numerous fast flowing rivers. Jamaica is mountainous and greatly forested in the interior, and has low coastal plains and scattered hills and plateaux. It is km at its greatest length and 82km at its greatest width. The Blue Mountains are in the east.
The highest peak, the Blue Mountain Peak, attains 2,m. Jamaica is the third largest of the fifty-one inhabited islands in the Caribbean archipelago. It lies just inside the rim of the western half of the this archipelago, formed by the the islands constituting the Greater Antilles. The island commands some of the chief sea routes of the Caribbean. The Kingston Harbour is the seventh largest natural Harbour in the world, and it is located on the southern side of the island.
It has facilities to accommodate the most up-to date methods of general and bulk cargo handling. Extensive hurricane-proof warehousing, cold storage and handling facilities support its continuous deep wharfage. There are two international airports. English is the official language. In addition a dialect based on English is spoken by the majority of the population.
The climate varies from tropical and humid at sea level to temperate in the mountain areas. Rainfall is seasonal, with marked regional variations. Mean temperatures in coastal areas are 75 degrees Fahrenheit 24 degrees Celsius in February and 81 degrees Fahrenheit 27 degrees Celsius in August. The wettest months are normally May and October: the hurricane season extends from July to October.
Indigenous to Jamaica the plant is renowned for its medicinal quality. It is a species of the Humming Bird. The ackee an edible fruit which was brought to Jamaica from West Africa in the 18th century by Captain Bligh. The flag is tricolour, with a simple design of crossed diagonals in gold and triangles in black and green. The colours are symbolic: Green- agriculture; Black- hardships to be overcome; Gold- sunshine. The Jamaican culture is rich in varied art forms, and art movements reflecting the racial and cultural mixtures of the island.
The African and European aspects of our culture are dominant. This claim is evident in the religious beliefs and practices of our people, in our music and dance forms, and our works of art and our food. It is highly acclaimed internationally. Jamaican art and artists are also world renowned. Of note are, Edna Manley, and sculptor Cecil Baugh.
Writers, of note include Claude McKay, and H. The Hon. Rastafari and Reggae music are internationally identified with Jamaica. Bob Marley is an icon for both these concepts. Jamaica is also known for jerk, a style of cooking which has now become popular in areas where Jamaicans have migrated to, for example North America and England. Jamaica is a well respected force in the world of sports.
Jamaicans perform creditably at the major athletic meets. Courtney Walsh a retired former player for the West Indies Cricket team is the world record holder for the most number of wickets taken in Test Cricket. Merlene Ottey is noted in the world of track and field as the most durable athlete.
She is able to compete at the highest level even though she is over forty years old. Jamaica is as a popular tourist destination. The Jamaican economy is very dependent on agriculture. Sugar is the most important crop in terms of export value, as it occupies almost a third of the cultivated area of the island. Other important exports crops include coffee and cocoa. It is also one of the 66 African, Caribbean and Pacific nations which has signed the third Lome Convention Lome III which gives member countries duty free access of manufactured and agricultural exports to the European Union.
Jamaica is an independent country, and a dominion of the British Commonwealth. The Queen of Great Britain is the titular sovereign of Jamaica, a symbolic figure of unity without real powers. A new Constitution was enacted with Independence in August, In all matters he is advised by a Privy Council. The Executive comprises the Prime Minister who is the leader of the majority party, and Ministers appointed by the Prime Minister. Together they form the Cabinet which is the highest executive power.
The Legislature comprises two chambers, an elected House and a nominated Senate. The Executive is chosen from both chambers. As required by the Constitution the Leader of the minority party is Leader of the Opposition. The Chief Justice is head of the judiciary. All prosecutions are initiated by the Director of Public Prosecutions. The appointment of the Auditor General is elaborately safeguarded. The Rule of Law is practised, and political detachment from the functioning of Justice and the appointments and regulation of the Civil Service, are strictly safeguarded and observed.
However, with the arrival of the Spaniards in , the aboriginal population drastically declined. Today there are no Tainos in Jamaica Roberts, , p. The Spanish population significantly decreased following the arrival of the English in For over three centuries, the island was a colony of the England until it acquired independence on August 6, Throughout English rule, the occurrence of particularly periodical mass immigration by coerced and contractual means served to introduce other ethnic groups into the island.
Although these ethnicities exist to varying degrees in the society, they have all contributed to its ethnic heritage. The Tainos, previously referred to as the Arawaks, have often been described as the earliest inhabitants of Jamaica and the first to have come into contact with the Spaniards. Existing knowledge about the culture of the Tainos is largely based on archaeological evidence and the written records of Europeans Spanish and English who colonized the island.
This is mainly a result of the decimation of the Taino population by enslavement, warfare, as well as diseases. Prior to Spanish encounter in , the Taino population, though possibly exaggerated, is estimated to have been between five and six hundred thousand, a figure that was recorded by Fray Bartholome de las Casas Bercht et al, By the end of Spanish colonization, the population was reduced to what many have termed extinction.
The Taino society was primarily agrarian and fishing based. They cultivated maize, squash, papaya, custard apple, hog plum, pineapple, sweet potato, and cassava, in addition to other food crops. Cassava, however, was their main staple and was an essential part of various rituals and observances. It was also used to make cakes called cazabe and in making these cakes, the Tainos processed the staple and removed the toxins from it Bercht et al, Today, cazabe is a part of Jamaican cuisine, but it is more popularly known as bammy.
With the abundance of sea water on the island, it is not surprising that fishing was common among the Tainos. They harvested conch, oysters, crabs as well as other edible sea creatures. This, of course, was facilitated by their fishing techniques and navigational and canoe making skills. Calls for Lawrence to scrap possession-game. Hyland: We have what it takes to rebound. Latest Youth Teams News. Fevrier: U tournament at home will prepare us well for Concacaf championship. Sancho concerned about players after U withdrawal.
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